Monday, January 2, 2012

WOLFEN - Chapter IV CD review

WOLFEN - Chapter IV CD

Pure Legend Records / Pure Steel Records

Genre: Power Metal / Thrash

If this release didn't have an intro with the sound of wolves howling on it I would've been disappointed. With a name like WOLFEN you come to expect these things. What I didn't expect is that this band's vocalist Andreas von Lipinski (who also plays bass) at times sounds like Graham Bonnet which is pretty cool in my book. This is WOLFEN's fourth full length since starting out back in the late 90s. The band was releasing full lengths at a modest pace through the early part of the past decade but the aptly titled Chapter IV is their first since 2006. Music like this is for genre purists at heart as well as this band's countrymen and women in Germany. I'm sure these guys are big in their homeland although not DORO big but at least modestly big. Musically this has ICED EARTH styled power melodies joined along with TESTAMENT's thrash aggression. Also Chapter IV is a long album checking in just a few minutes under seventy. That's a lot of room to play around in which WOLFEN certainly does with their fourteen tracks. Whether it's all out thrashers like "Revolution / Evolution" and "Nefilim" or strong power metal centric cuts like "Hole in the Sky" or "Unbroken", the songs all have this catchy surge of electricity about them. Even on the ballad "Birmingham 6", which kinda reminds me of Down to Earth era RAINBOW, there's this old school feel about this release that doesn't sound forced or fake. It's a long way from the 1980s but WOLFEN definitely take you back to some good times past. One thing important here is that the songs on here sound fresh as well. It might have taken a while but WOLFEN have an opus of greatness here.




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