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Born in the late 60's, Chesy hails from a Welsh mining village with a long name and was pretty glad when he got the Hell out of there. He got into Rock/Metal in about 1980, thanks to a TISWAS related incident (Rainbow video for All Night Long) and thankfully has never looked back. Chesy often sang solo in the school choir, but thanks to a puberty related incident his voice is now completely bolloxed, although in his own head Paul thinks he sounds like a blend of Coverdale and Dio (R.I.P). He was brought up on the classics - Deep Purple, Rainbow, Thin Lizzy, Rush, Whitesnake and loved melodic rock and the Hair Bands of the 80's. (Nowadays, he has progressed a little and prefers a more technical and/or progressive metal - Dream Theater, Rush, Symphony X, Porcupine Tree, Pain Of Salvation, Spock's Beard. He hates Black and Death Metal (can't stand the grunting) but for some unknown reason loves the magnificent Opeth! He wont stop this blog until his beloved FM finally play the likes of the NEC as a headlining act!!!

Thursday 26 July 2018

Primal Fear - 'Apocalypse' Album Review

The European power metal combo Primal Fear has been kicking around the metal underground for years, refining their brand of melodic riffing and soaring vocals. Their sound, highly influenced by Gamma Ray  (who has traded members with this band) and Judas Priest , was introduced on their 1998 eponymous debut. The following year found them gathering a press following when Jaws of Death  garnered positive reviews from most respectable metal critics. On top of that, their European popularity flourished as power metal enjoyed moderate success in the overseas mainstream. 
Nuclear Fire followed in 2001, leading to their first U.S. appearances in the guise of several large metal festivals throughout the year. They returned to the studio in early 2002, recording and releasing Black Sun by the end of spring. 2004's Devil's Ground and 2005's Seven Seals  saw the band expanding their fan base via a run of heavy touring, including a European and Japanese tour with Helloween, and 2007's New Religion featured a guest vocal from Epica's Simone Simons, as well as ambitious orchestral arrangements from Matz Ulmer and Mat Sinner. 2009 saw the release of the band's eighth studio long player, 16.6 (Before the Devil Knows You're Dead), followed in 2012 by a string of well-received LPs that included Unbreakable (2011), Delivering the Black (2014), and Rulebreaker (2016). In 2017, they issued the live album Angels of Mercy as well as the single "If Looks Could Kill."

Although they’ve been going for over 20 years now 'Apocalypse' is the only Primal Fear material that I have knowingly heard. I have listened to 'Apocalypse' several times now and it is a good album. However, it did not impress me enough to make me want to go out and buy their extensive back catalogue. There isn’t actually anything wrong with the album but sadly there wasn’t a single track on the album that made me sit up and think 'holy sh*t that’s a great song'. What I did notice is that the composition of 'Apocalypse' is extremely well done and it flows beautifully; the atmospheric opener reaches a crescendo that sets the tone for the rest of the album. 
 Although I couldn’t pick a track that really stood out, what I did hear was a very polished melodic metal album that will have any self respecting rock fan shredding their air guitar and double kicking their phantom drum kit to the blistering paced 'New Rise' and 'The Ritual'.  'King Of Madness' does slow things down a touch then the breakneck speed resumes with 'Blood Sweat And Fear'. For the next five tracks the foot comes off the accelerator slightly, almost coming to a halt when 'Eye Of The Storm' fades out.  However, there was one shot of nitrous left in the tank and when it was hit 'Cannonball' came flying out of the blocks to bringing the album to a high speed conclusion.
For me Apocalypse is a solid 8/10 album.

Ralf Scheepers – lead vocals
Mat Sinner – bass, vocals
Tom Naumann – guitars, backing vocals
Alex Beyrodt – guitars
Magnus Karlsson – guitars, keyboards
Francesco Jovino – drums

Tracklisting - 
New Rise
The Ritual
King Of Madness
Blood, Sweat & Fear
Hail To The Fear
Hounds Of Justice
The Beast
Eye Of The Storm

• Official Website: www.primalfear.de 
• Facebook:www.facebook.com/PrimalFearOfficial 

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