You may remember Aeonblack – pure Heavy Metal from Germany. These guys are not reinventing Heavy Metal and trust me, this is a very good thing, especially for people like me who write about music as it makes things simpler. No subgenres to be investigated, no fancy words necessary! Their lead guitarist and vocalist – Maunze and Holger – sent me recently their new album: Metal Bound and I am very happy to write a detailed review. I took a quick look at their Facebook Page as well as their website and I realised that their bass player Nikki left them some time ago. I have no indication when but he is no longer with Aeonblack.
Anyway, let’s get down to business and review their new album Metal Bound!
The first track on this 10 piece album is called New Reality. The intro is a few seconds of bass and drums only followed by classic Power Metal and a couple of high pitched “Reality” screams. Nice overture gentlemen. What follows is good old Aeonblack – Holger’s unique voice which really suits the band’s style extremely well. The track has a fast rhythm and whilst the vocals remain the focal point, the guitars grow more and more dominant towards the end of the track. About 3 minutes into the track this becomes more obvious and New Reality becomes really enjoyable!
The title track called Metal Bound starts with tough riffs and a rhythm that makes you bang your head. Metal Bound serves as a reminder of the good old times and I hear many elements that would remind me of different bands. What makes this piece enjoyable is the fact that Aeonblack blends all these different parts together and makes their own unique piece. I really like it when the guys slow down a bit half way through the track and bring out some background chants and some really nice guitar solos, top notch.
Aeonblack is Heavy Metal without frills and this becomes obvious when taking a listen to Coming Home. A fast beginning with several breakdowns in rhythm and a strong Maunze on lead guitar throughout this track. I am quite convinced that the refrain works out very well when performed live as it is memorable and almost anthem like. It is one single track but within it we have a lot of variety and many different parts which makes this a very demanding piece of music.
No sleep ’til Loerrach! Last Breath is very powerful with a strong guitar intro and if the wife would not be around, I would bring out at least the air guitar and bang my head, maybe even throw a few PET bottles around the apartment! So far the bass has taken a bit of a back seat – with a few small exceptions. This is not unusual though, it remains an essential part of all of the tracks even though it may seem to drown a bit in the more prevalent rhythm guitars. Last Breath is my favorite track so far.
For a moment there I was worried when I started to listen to No One Knows! Do I have to write about a ballad? No! The beginning gives you that impression however, it sounds really beautiful and Holger brings out some goosebumps for a second. 2 minutes later the goosebumps won’t go away as the guitars take over and keep the emotions going. Without even noticing, Aeonblack turns this into a proper Metal track and if I have mentioned “anthem like” like beforehand, No One Knows to me is a proper anthem! Wow – mind-blowing, seriously.
World Of Fools must be a great track. Whenever the word Fool appears in a song title it is usually an amazing track (King Of Fools (Edguy) or Ministry Of Fools (Saxon)) and once more this simple and pathetic rule is correct. Aeonblack is managing my expectations well. This piece is a bit more progressive than the previous ones. I had to listen several times to fully embrace this great tune and its sheer power.
This Is highlights the variety of these German guys. You will discover once more new elements such as a slightly darker underlying guitar pattern during the first 3 minutes or so. Holger’s vocal range in this song is again impressive and he goes from straight forward to high pitched and then to hell and back again! A compliment also for Kay for keeping up on his drum kit, good thing that Mike Portnoy is one of his favorite artists!
Track 8 on this album is called Awake. Trust me, you will stay awake when listening to this tune. Distorted guitars in combination with some double bass drumming open this song. Aeonblack remain extremely powerful and there are no fill-in tracks at all. Awake is enjoyable from the first second but I find it rather progressive and as with many progressive tracks, the more you listen to it, the better it gets. Try it out!
Where Is God? is a massive 08:30 minutes track. I worry that a ballad might be coming up but 2 minutes later I am once more relieved. Even though I thoroughly enjoy the last 06:30 minutes the beginning is not for me. Then again listening to the lyrics – which are sociocritical- I get the message. The remainder of the track is more powerful and for once I really took the time to focus on the lyrics as well. They are impressive and it is one of the reasons why this piece is so formidable. When it comes to music itself I can only recommend you to listen to it. Sit down, relax and get ready to enjoy 08:30 minutes of awe-inspiring guitars!
Dangerous wraps this album up and Aeonblack leaves us with a 3:51 minute long bang! Fast, loud and extremely powerful. Holger brings out a few more high pitched screams and keeps up a very strong vocal performance, Maunze and Tom give it their all in this last piece and Kay is bashing his soul away on drums. This is probably the fastest track overall.
Now, as you know, I do not normally rate albums. However, the least I can do is to give Aeonblack 7 points on the Richter Magnitude Scale. I really think it is a massive album but unlike the maximum points on the Richter Scale, Aeonblack is not about total destruction hence the 7 points for bringing out a mind-blowing album! Now dear Metalheads, be happy as finally you can listen to their music and prove me right! Enjoy This Is! Thank you for reading this!