posted on 1/2004 By:
From the genre that gives metal a bad name comes Battleroar. I’m a self-admitted patient in the insane asylum of Power Metal, but there are some things that don’t even appeal to my tastes. There are some good aspects of this album (as with pretty much any metal album), but they’re not enough to garner my recommendation for this self titled effort.
For starters, the production is pretty flat. The focus seems rightfully placed on the guitars, as the rest of the instruments are pretty negligible. The highlight is of course guitar here. Most tracks seem to be built around a pretty straightforward main riff, with little deviation from the expected path. A lot of the riffs are actually very good and catchy, which is what caught my ear at first listen. The battle theme is somewhat cool, but again we’ve heard this a million times before. Taste my steel, grasp the blade, wield the foe-hammer, victorious we ride, and so forth. Nothing new.
The thing that I couldn’t get past was how obnoxious the vocals are. Even as a fan of the falsetto eardrum destroying high notes, I couldn’t bring myself to enjoy the vocals. It sounds like a bad karaoke night or something. Usually it’s the vocals that help me get past the ultra cheese; a charismatic vocalist can give you the willing suspension of disbelief so that you no longer care about how ridiculous the theme is. Such is not the case here. Another thing that any power metal act should have is an inhuman drummer, while in this case the man on the skins is merely average. Either that or they just don’t put him to good use. One way or another, I’m disappointed.
The good thing about coming into a new power or classic metal style act is that you have no expectations of anything, which gives me a clear conscience to say that I will probably never listen to this disc again. When I have to force myself to listen to the entire album, things aren’t going well. This is a shame, because there are some nice riffs in there. The production and vocals REALLY bring this one down, therefore I must advise against anyone trying out Battleroar.
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