1. Never Cry Wolf
4. Celestial Bodies Fall
5. Korgon’s Descent
6. Minutes to Madness
7. Necro Nation
8. I am King
9. In the Lair of a Lion
11. The Wolf at your Door
Release Date: 2011 – Self-Released
Second release of dutch power metal band Lord Volture. After inviting Jeff Waters on their debut „Beast of Thunder“ the band now also can show another high level guest on their new album „Never Cry Wolf“. No one less than Sean Peck, vocalist of US Metal powerfuls CAGE has taken part this time. The promo says their bands influences lie in bands like Vicious Rumors, Jag Panzer or Iced Earth. Not the worst references of bands. And after the quit of Jag Panzer, maybe we can find here a new alternative for all who are sad about their split up ? Well…let’s find it out now.
Kickin’ off with the title track. A melodic guitar line starts „Never Cry Wolf“ before a well known US Metal riff of the 80’s appears. Vocalist David Marcelis offers a wide spectre of voice. Proofing his class in higher level and screams, but not as good as that in deeper levels. He tries to put a pound of aggression behind his voice, works good if he performs high, not in deeper base.
But the song can point with a nice chorus and good guitar work. The sound breathes the air of the good old 80’s power metal times. Welcome back in time !
After this 7-minute-appetizer we’re moving into the deep of the „Taiga“. A Jag Panzer memorial guitar line at the beginning, like galopping horses. The guitar duo Paul Marcelis/Leon Hermans from time to time plug in a melodic harmony guitar line between their shredding. The vocalist again performs like a light version of Harry Conklin (Jag Panzer). His willing to do is present, but it would be a lie to say he could reach this god of power metal voices. For my opinion David Marcelis has to bring more power behind his voice. As I said before…good in high lines, too powerless in deeper lines. But he really can point in his high screams, that we can fortunately hear a lot. Straight power metal smasher old style.
Power and the Glory ? The guitar line that starts „Wendigo“ remembers a little to that Saxon classic. But this is the only parallel to the british NWOBHM legends. This song is a mixture of speed riffing parts and slower breaks in the refrain. Ok….in the refrain there could be a bit more pressure, but all in all a speedful 80’s grenade that fans of that genre will like for sure. The only question for me that lasts is…what is Wendigo ?
„Celestial Bodies Fall“….Amazing riff in the beginning combined with some frickling elements show the guitarist talent as well. The drums lean the song a big punch to push it forward. David performs like he would suffer from the worlds pain. Some tempo changes give the song an epic touch, like we know it from bands like Manilla Road or yes…Jag Panzer. I would says that Jag Panzer is definetely the man influence for Lord Volture. Not only cause of the sound of the voice that is near to the Tyrant, also the musical arrangements lie similar to them. Cause of it’s breaks and various elements this song is the best one for me so far. Classic, epic, powerful 80’s metal best played. And the length of again more than 7 minutes underlines that too.
Oriental start in „Korgon’s Descent“. Middle east guitars in alliance with some back choirs rule the scene. The song is a speed metal monster with some breaks in it. Power drumming and some crazy guitar leads can proof the songwriting quality again and it let you feel being part of a battlefield.
Epic moments everywhere. Manilla Road is again in my mind.
It’s only some „Minutes to Madness“…the tempo is more slow this time. Depper laid guitars played in 70’s hard rock style combined with David’s epic voice means a great flashback in time, as bands like Rainbow and early Judas Priest began their way of triumph. Good rocker with a harmony refrain in twin vocals.
As slow the song was before the more speed comes up in „Necro Nation“. Hectic vocals, strange and disharmonic guitar lines but designed with a catchy refrain. Sometimes you think that David’s fast performed screams could break his voice, but he stands the time only interrupted by police sirens and some radio announcement samples. The song paints a crime scene here and from that the band breaks the tempo so that the song can spread his charme with a long guitar performance with stamping rhythm and duel solos. In the end the song ends like it starts, weird and screamy.
Applause, applause…“I am King“. After a short spoken message David tells us that he is king. A real dark song. Lord Volture tries here to create an excitement bow starting with back guitars and vocal solos. For that the refrain is a bit disappointing. I awaited more here. Just a rock’n roll refrain and no mighty epic sequences, as the begin promised. So this song is more a filler than a killer, good played for sure but without the esscence of a signature song.
Guitar entrance like Breaking-the-law times of Judas Priest in „In the Lair of the Lion“. Rapid Fire comes in mind. This is with it’s 8 minutes again a relly long track. The twin guitars spread a warm sound before a slow riff starts, heavy as hell. After this 2 minute guitar intermezzo elegian vocals sends epic moments. Held in midtempo this song remembers me to a band called Total Eclipse, if anyone of you knows them. Sean Peck gives his audience to the listeners here too, like ever with his typical Halford like touch. Some shredding parts used as guitar solo duels underline the old Judas Priest vibes in this song.
Acoustic guitars lead to balladesque voice and moments in „Brother“. Sounds tragic between fear and hope. Well…so this is the ballad of the album. Not cheesy as known from lots of Hard Rock and Hair Spray bands. Performed without thinking about writing a lady killer song. A statement for the brother, praying for him. Not more, not less.
What would you do if you have the „Wolf at your door“ ? Howling wolf in the rain first and an oriental acoustic guitar part opens this albums last song. Soon the song is getting faster and faster. Yes…this remembers to Iced Earth a bit cause of the guitar lines. The vocals appear aggressive and rough. More straight and fast forward again. Nowhere to run, nowhere to hide. The Wolf is at your door. The guitars are galopping through the whole track, speed rules. Later as some bells can be heard the song moves again to a Jag Panzer memorial one. A nice kicking track to end this album with power.
Well…I am a fan of old 80’s US Metal. And this album breathes this great times during the whole album. What prevents a higher rate is the thin vocals in middle spheres (the screams are really good) and the low production some times. More power here could be necessary for the band to reach the next step.
The album is good enough to reach the standards of the 80’s, but it is a bit to less for today. Ok…music of that time has to have a sound like this maybe, but more punch for example behind the drums would be good.
I think that Lord Volture will realize this in future releases and so all fans of that kind of music have to risk an ear on this album and I am looking forward what is coming next.
Points 7 /10
Review by Kerbinator