1. The Gift of Death
2. Codex Gigas
3. Spirit of the Death
4. Medieval Land
5. Burning the Holy Gates
6. Hate of Dogmas
8. The Signal
9. Speed Metal Attack
10. Old School Avenger
Release Date: 15 September 2012 – Inferno Records
Clenched Fist is a band from brazil formed back in 2000. After their release of a demo in 2003 and the debut album in 2008 here comes their second full length called „The Gift of Death“. Clenched Fist describe their music as in the line of epic heavy metal that bands like Manilla Road or Ironsword play. Retro old school sounds ? Interesting…but we have to find out if Clenched Fist can come up with this requirements.
All starts with an intro. Horns and choirs…heading for the battle. Leading to „Codex Gigas“, the first real song. Epic guitars and real old school vocals of Vagner Fist underline the words about Manilla Road. This is exactly the sound that those legends play for many years. Good guitar work, midtempo reigns. Far away from modern sounds, deep rooted in the 80’s.
Galopping Maiden guitar line opens „Spirit of the Death“. Higher vocals and some doom elements reminds a little to older Candlemass. Vagner sound more as Messiah Marcolin than Mark Shelton here.
„Medieval Land“ next points with marching drums and deeper guitar lines. Everytime in a melodic way. And….again…the vocals gives it all a doom metal touch. The song is getting faster in the middle. Battlefield sounds ends it.
Now we are „Burning the Holy Gates“. Faster start into the song than before. Speedy epic metal I would say. Vagner has some problems to keep the speed in his vocals and so he laughs about it.
This is that old school that there is a wall of dust on it. The song fades out in the last minute with acoustical guitars supported by fire noises. The holy gates burnt down !!
„Hate of Dogmas“ sounds as it comes directly from the early 70’s. Sabbath vibes around. More whispered vocals than sung. Elegian guitar elements, sometimes strange in sound.
A heavy metal riff starts „Asgard“ in a faster way. More speed in that track. Sometimes I get problems to understand what Vagner is singing. Anyway…the heaviest and most speedful song so far. Chaotic guitar duels in alliance with heavy riffing and some Vagner screams.
More traditional heavy metal now…“The Signal“. High in tempo, straight riffing. Some cannons fired around. A kind of epic speed metal. In the refrain the vocals sound a little strange to me.
Heavy, doomy start in „Speed Metal Attack“. And as the title tells it is getting faster soon. Did the song titles running out ? The refrain says „no“. And yes…this seems to be the fastest track of the album. But I wouldn’t call it speed metal. Fast, epic metal…that’s it.
„Old School Avenger“ is the last song. And…Clenched Fist are real old school avengers, for sure.
This is not a real catchy song. Some balladesque moments in between and high vocals makes it again more doom style.
„The Gift of Death“ is an album for fans rooted in deep old school sounds. Yes..Manilla Road lovers also will like Clenched Fist. But also fans of old Candlemass can risk their ears cause of the vocals and the slowing parts that appear very often.
Modern orientated people – put away your fingers !! It will not amuse you.
This is pure, this is dusty, this is nostalgic – this is Clenched Fist !
Points: 7 / 10
Review by Kerbinator