Release DetailsLABEL Napalm Records
RELEASED ON 4/17/2007
Blade Of Triumph
posted on 9/2007 By:
Is it me or does most power metal these days just kind of cruise by without much notice? I can't help but think that there's something lacking. In the case of Iron Fire's third album, Blade of Triumph, it's a heavier set of balls.
Where I used to think vocalist Martin Steene was nothing short of phenomenal, I find myself questioning the need for his elongated wails. Something just clicked with me on the last album, Revenge, and it's not clicking here. The riffs that have come to define the band's more traditional power metal sound are slightly less crunchy and the tunes not as catchy, but I think most of the blame lies in Steene's exaggerated vocal quirks. I admire his ability to reach certain pitches, but that doesn't mean it always fits the music.
However, when Steene keeps himself in check Iron Fire is very far from being a bad band. Songs like "Lord of the Labyrinth" and "Dawn of Victory" are fine examples of the kind of chest-thumping metal that, either invited or uninvited, sticks to your memory like hot glue. There's a strong sense of diversity, too, that keeps this band afloat. A largely acoustic-driven track, "Legend of the Magic Sword," is a welcome change of pace near the end of the album, and, thankfully, Steene doesn't force his performance. Unfortunately, these are all exceptions to the rule that says that Blade of Triumph is a minor disappointment.
All in all, Blade of Triumph is a decent but mostly unremarkable album. There's nothing in Iron Fire's sound that comes off as particularly unique, and while they could get away with that on Revenge because it had some pretty kick-ass tunes, the same cannot be said for this third album. Nonetheless, Steene will continue being an arguing point for Force of Evil and Iron Fire fans alike, and Iron Fire will probably continue to release stuff that just kind of floats around the underground like a lonely pup.
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