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Intense: The Shape of Rage

British band Intense, playing and recording albums since the 1990s, is one of the most overlooked heavy metal acts in the world. To finally change it, everyone who loves their metal music pure and undiluted should go and buy a copy of Intense's latest release, The Shape of Rage. I don't think you'll be disappointed. Hell, I believe you'll end up looking for the band's previous albums even before The Shape of Rage stops spinning.

What I'm trying to say is that The Shape of Rage is, as Larry David would put it, a pretty, pretty, pretty good heavy metal effort. Starting with two intense (no pun here!), galloping, in-your-face tracks, "Anubis" and "The Elemental", it then sports its first real highlight: the wonderful, over 5-minute long "One Man's Word" which truly sounds like a lost heavy metal treasure from the '80s! Exactly the same can be said about "Save Me From Myself" and "The Shape of Rage", both of which immediately bring to mind the golden era of such bands as Iron Maiden and Iced Earth. And even though the balladic "For the Fallen" certainly isn't one of Intense's most impressive tracks and the eight-and-a-half-minute long "Skull Of Sidon II (The Final Stand)" doesn't always make most of its epic running time, it would be unfair to say there are any fillers here: all nine tracks collected on The Shape of Rage are at least fine (yes, even "For the Fallen" has its moments of greatness!), and more often than not – they're much more than just that.

Led by frontman Sean Hetherington's powerful vocals and some skull-crushing guitar work by Nick Palmer and Dave Peak, this is an album you can always turn to when the old-school-metal nostalgia sweeps over you. And you know it will.

If only the band's back catalogue was easier to track down then I guess such bursts of nostalgia wouldn't be frightening at all…

Sean Hetherington – vocals
Nick Palmer – guitar
Dave Peak – guitar
Steve Brine – bass
Neil Ablard – drums

01. Anubis
02. The Elemental
03. One Man's Word
04. For The Fallen
05. Save Me From Myself
06. Lie
07. Haunted
08. Skull Of Sidon II (The Final Stand)
09. The Shape Of Rage

Added: April 11th 2012
Reviewer: Bartek Paszylk
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 2059
Language: english

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