Title: XIII Devil's DozenLabel: Frontiers Records
you may have guessed from the title, this is the 13th
studio release from Denmark’s Royal Hunt and fifth to
feature the vocals of D.C Cooper, who once again brings the
sound of the first Royal Hunt album back with a vengeance.
well as Cooper’s vocals, we see the enigmatic keyboards of
founder Andre Anderson, the towering guitars of Jonas Larsen
and the big hitting rhythm section of Andreas Passmark on
bass and Andreas Habo Johansson on drums.
album once again highlights the Danes ability to cross over
between the Melodic and Symphonic Metal genres with ease, as
the album opens up in true Hunt style with the first of the
seven-minute epics ‘So Right So Wrong’, as the keyboards
of Anderson and the guitars of Larsen fight out for
supremacy with the only winner being the listener, then when
Cooper unleashes his vocal might and the bass and drum
explode onto the scene, the track really comes together.
this massive opener you wonder have the band peaked to soon,
but fear not, this isn’t the case, as the epic metal
continues with 'May You Never (Walk Alone)'. This one
opens with a gentle piano styled keyboard then Cooper joins
the party and all hell breaks loose. The guitar, bass
and drums unleash holy melodic metal hell in true Royal Hunt
second of the seven minute plus tracks is up next, this is
where the band showcases it's clever arrangement as we mix a
little jazz infusion with the more symphonic metal.
This is a really funky track that ebbs and flows like no
other, it has a dark edge while still retaining a great
melodic feel, again it's all down to those clever
more traditional lovers of symphonic drive metal will just
love ‘A Tear In The Rain’. This is the best
example of Cooper’s expanded vocal range. A real
powerhouse from one and all on this one. The tempo is
brought down a touch with the 'Until The Day’, then it's
full speed ahead once more with the stunning folk/metal
infused ‘Riches To Rags’.
The band bring a real modern metal vibe with excellent ‘Way Too Late’, before rounding things off with the shortest track off the album 'How Do You Know’. A real classy mid-tempo slice of Melodic Metal to round off another great Royal Hunt opus. It may be only eight tracks long, but each and every track is a killer and when they are all this good, you don’t need any fillers.
Review by: Barry McMinn
Right So Wrong
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