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HMS Music Spotlight

The more I hear Primal Fear, the more I like the speed and progression of everything that spills out from their music. Their sound defines their name and they’re not afraid to make you turn on the lights when you hear them. Rulebreaker is just another reason to turn up the volume. Ralf Scheepers’ vocals pierce through any void, the guitar duo of Tom Naumann and Alex Beyrodt starts a fire under your feet, Matt Sinner’s bass playing sticks to the book and the canon fire of Francesco Jovino explodes between your ears.

This, the 12th studio release is again a work of metal art. These melodies that provoke you to listen hard and pound your chest with pride will carry you through any rough day. For example, “Angels of Mercy”, “The End Is Near” have an anthem feel to them that draws you into what’s being said like looking beyond the obstacles and pushing through. “Bullets And Tears” will remind you of Judas Priest, but that’s not a bad thing. The title track “Rulebreaker” is a song for all of us heavy metal rebels and “In Metal We Trust” is the nail that holds that trio of tunes together.

The next song is over eleven mutes of mid-tempo mastery. Each second is filled with something new to hear. “We Walk without Fear” is wonderfully written and doesn’t leave you bored. The guitar breaks are speedy without getting muddled and the surrounding music envelopes the voice. “At War With the World” speeds things up a bit with more of that classic metal sound and “The Devil in Me” beefs up the beat with the break down rhythms in the verses.

Primal Fear
(Contagion Records)
Written by: Tim Duran
9 out of 10

The intro to “Constant Heart” automatically tells you that you better brace yourself for a wild ride and the ride is no Sunday night cruise down the Boulevard. Next “The Sky Is Burning” takes it down but takes nothing away from the heaviness within the song. The record ends with the insane tune, “Raving Mad”. This song gives you the emotional state of being dragged through the freshly waxed tiled hallways of madness with no regard as to how you’re feeling.

Downside is that for a few songs it is heavy on the Judas Priest vibe. Not that there is anything wrong with that, it’s just when the intro or the chorus comes up, it’s the first thing I think of. Upsides are the structure and the songwriting. No one ever writes eleven minute heavy metal songs. Sure there are the Prog bands that do, but the last real heavy metal song I can remember is “Rime of The Ancient Mariner” by Iron Maiden in 1984. Although Primal Fear’s song “We Walk without Fear” is nothing like “Rime”, it’s a compelling song that combines poetry and metal together.

I like how the whole record plays out and I give Primal Fear Rulebreaker a solid 9 for keeping heavy metal something to put our trust into.

Tim Duran, HMS

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