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Manowar: Warriors Of The World (10th Anniversary Remastered Edition)

If ever there was a love or loathe band it is Manowar; some finding their chest beating Metal and anthemic OTT approach to be stirring and uplifting, while the band's detractors point to loincloths, slogans of "Death to false Metal" and a lyrical fixation with swords, battles, warriors and manliness as why they should be ridiculed. Released back in 2002 (therefore making this 10th Anniversary Remaster a little late...) Warriors Of The World was the ninth offering of such fare, with the band's previous efforts Louder Than Hell and The Triumph Of Steel cementing the overly bombastic style cultivated on Fighting The World and Kings Of Metal.

Warriors Of The World begins in exactly the same fashion, with "Call To Arms" and "Fight For Freedom" (the latter a 9/11 tribute) being everything that people either love or loathe. Snarled chanting vocals, thunking beats, bristling riffs and machismo abound through a pair of convincing Metal anthems which call their believers to battle. However from there an oddly faithful version of the operatic piece "Nessun Dorma" surprises both through the manner in which it fails to gel with what has come before and, to be fair, the impressive vocal display from Eric Adams. The song was actually included on the album as a tribute to Adams' mother who had sadly died earlier in the year it was recorded and on that level it was a fitting addition, but maybe it would have fared better as an album ending "bonus" cut. That said the short classical piece "Valhalla" which follows it doesn't help the flow of the record either, especially when further followed by the slow string infused "Swords In The Wind". Then an odd version of "An American Trilogy" (made famous by Elvis Presley) where three traditional American 19th Century pieces are brought together into one song, confuses further and in truth struggles to convince. Most of these tracks are handled well, but coming one after the other there's no doubt that Warriors Of The World lacks for focus, especially when the classically inspired Wagnerisms of "The March" is also taken into consideration.

From there WOTW closes out with another four foot to the floor anthems in the traditional Manowar style, with "Fight Until We Die", "Warriors Of The World Unite" and "House Of Death" (the latter also included again as an excellent live bonus version on this reissue), all being as good as they come.

Possibly the most eclectic and uneven release in the entire Manowar catalogue, I have to be honest and say that back in 2002 it confused me to the extent that it actually became my final Manowar purchase. Something the benefit of a decade or so of hindsight hasn't really altered. In terms of remastering, this version of the album sounds magnificent, accentuating the power and might of this band, while also being light enough of touch to give the less Metallic sections the gravitas they need to make a mark. However for completists, the omission of the two bonus tracks ("I Believe" and "The Dawn Of Battle") that were included on the "Gold" version of this album will be a disappointment.

If want to hear Manowar in all their uncompromising glory, then this probably isn't the best place to start.

Track Listing
1. Call to Arms
2. The Fight for Freedom
3. Nessun Dorma
4. Valhalla
5. Swords in the Wind
6. An American Trilogy
7. The March
8. Warriors of the World United
9. Hand of Doom
10. House of Death
11. Fight Until We Die
12. House Of Death (live)

Added: August 16th 2013
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: The Manowar Official Web Site
Hits: 2353
Language: english

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