Wertung: highly recommended
Label: Shadow Kingdom Records
Somehow, and I don’t know why, I felt the urge to write this review in english so I apologize for that in the first place. Maybe I want to make sure the noble englishmen of IRON VOID can read what I have to say about their latest release “Excalibur” to give them a lot of love.
First I really thought I ended studying history after my GRAVE DIGGER-phase in the nineties but then IRON VOID came along with an album about “Excalibur” and the King Arthur legend, one of the greatest myths of the UK. But much more than the history class I’m overwhelmed by the beauty of the songs! Honestly … when I listened to the first songs “Dragon’s Breath”, “The Coming of a King”, “Lancelot of the Lake”, “Forbidden Love” for the very first time, I was smiling all the time. Not that it was funny, it was the hillariously well done Doom Metal that made me happy. Doom, happy. Paradox to some, but that’s my life. IRON VOID never deliver a depressed mood, nope. The have written some epic tunes, I listen for quite a while on a daily basis and I don’t get tired of it. They managed to write heavy riffs and merged them with the finest melodies. The first three mentioned songs remind me of WALPYRGUS when it comes to the melodies, but only they did it the doomy way. “Forbidden Love” even adds some DAUTHA heaviness to the great melodies and it is simply exciting stuff.
The following songs “Enemy within”, “The Grail Quest”, “A dream to some, a nightmare to others”, “The Death of Arthur” and “Avalon” cannot compete with the first four songs enitrely, although they a still great. But don’t get me wrong: If I would rate the songs on a scale from one to ten, the first four songs are definately eleven; the latter half is still a nine. Except the beautiful “Avalon” … that has to be a ten. So you’ll understand what I mean, right?! What we have is a great album in its entirety!
I don’t expect much from the most concept albums as many bands are focussing on the lyrics and neglect the quality of the songs but IRON VOID did both so well, that I’m simply excited to the maximum.
The band is doing great, too: Steve Wilsons plays one heavy riff after another, while the tremendously hauting vocals are done by bassist Jonathan “Sealey” Seale, who sets the pace with drummer Richard Maw; slow motions beats, or a slightly stoner-ish groove, you name it, they play it, hehe.
“Excalibur” is a kind of record that will have to find its fans in not only the Doom genre; of course, if you like BLACK SABBATH, ST. VITUS, CANDLEMASS, you’ll love the album for sure. But even if you’re a Heavy Metal maniac, you will have a great time listening to it (as you might remember my WALPYRGUS comparison!). The balance of heavyness and melody, accessibility and delivering the goods to the Doomheads around the world is, I repeat myself obviously, incredibly well executed.
I’m pretty sure “Excalibur” will be added to my all-time favourite mp3-stick I use when we travel and I recommend this record to everyone who loves timeless Doom Metal. It will be available via Shadow Kingdom Records as Vinyl on May 25th (European Vinyl release date), the release dates for the Tape and CD will be coming up shortly!
Love, Peace, Doom. (chris)