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Primal Fear: New Religion

Primal Fear opens its seventh studio album with "Sign of Fear," which is typical of the band's ear-melting Painkiller-meets-Gamma Ray sound. But then something unexpected happens: Track two, "Face The Emptiness," finds the band working within a tighter, more song-oriented framework, one in which melody and muscle collide in one of the few Primal Fear songs that will remain with listeners long after the music fades. The next track, "Everytime It Rains," emerges as even more of a surprise, with singer Ralf Scheepers (sounding as potent as ever) joining Epica's Simone Simons on a song that wouldn't have been out of place and probably would have enhanced Evanescence's latest album. Then, two tracks later, comes a three-part, eight-and-a-half-minute epic that has to rank among the most atmospheric, dramatic and moving pieces of work Primal Fear has ever recorded. Think Edguy covering Shadow Gallery. (That's right, you read correctly.) And bassist Mat Sinner's unrivaled production makes it all sound huge.

Indeed, New Religion marks a new beginning for the German metal band that released its first album in 1998. After severing ties with Nuclear Blast Records, Primal Fear signed with Frontiers Records, an Italian label best known for melodic hard rock, not power metal. Label and band each seem to have made some compromises on New Religion, and both should pick up new fans with this one. Granted, the title track, "Blood On Your Hands," and "World on Fire" still deliver vintage, galloping Primal Fear. But there's enough variety hear to make it Primal Fear's most accessible (and most unexpected) record.


Track Listing:
1) Sign of Fear
2) Face the Emptiness
3) Everytime It Rains
4) New Religion
5) Fighting the Darkness/The Darkness/Reprise
6) Blood On Your Hands
7) The Curse of Sharon
8) Too Much Time
9) Psycho
10) World on Fire
11) The Man (That I Don't Know)

Added: March 17th 2009
Reviewer: Michael Popke
Score:
Related Link: Frontiers Records
Hits: 1749
Language: english

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» SoT Staff Roundtable Reviews:

Primal Fear: New Religion
Posted by Pete Pardo, SoT Staff Writer on 2009-03-17 19:19:00
My Score:

As a recent convert to the Primal Fear camp, I'm quickly engulfing myself into their excellent back catalog of classic styled power metal, and eagerly awaiting their new release which is coming out spring of 2009. New Religion is their most recent CD, coming out back in 2007, and it's an inspired metal feast, containing plenty of the crunchy yet melodic material we've come to expect from this band, as well as some epic styled stunners like "Fighting the Darkness", "Face the Emptiness", and "Everytime It Rains". As always, Ralf Scheepers proves that he is one of the best vocalists in the heavy metal genre-forget the fact that he is at times a dead ringer for a young Rob Halford, this guy can flat out sing.Throw in some of the crispest, crunchiest, beefiest guitar riffs around, complete with blazing solos and wild pinch harmonics, killer production, and instantly memorable songs, and you have an unbeatable formula. In fact, it's easy to say that Primal Fear are coming up with the type of quality metal that we all wish Judas Priest could still muster (let's face it, Nostradamus was a big disappointment), and they keep delivering the goods time after time after time.

New Religion is a complete winner among a slew of albums like Seven Seals, Nuclear Fire, Devil's Ground, Black Sun, Jaws of Death, and Primal Fear that simply deliver the power metal goods on every level.



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