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Grave Digger: Symbol Of Eternity

Is it possible that some 40 years and 20 albums into their existence Symbol Of Eternity is my first encounter with the enduring German metallers Grave Digger? Well by my reckoning it is, and I have to say that it’s been an enjoyable, if hardly life changing experience. Grittier in approach, the sound here is still immediately recognisable as German, a mid-paced Accept grind sparking off something a little more based in the Running Wild sound. The whole album appears to be set during the Crusades and judging by the lyrics gargled out by Chris Boltendahl they were pretty much not a time to be alive, with much in the way raping and pillaging going on as the ‘liberators’ spread the ‘good word’.

For me, where things really come together here is when a sprinkling of the heavy but fun attack that the likes of Powerwolf thrive on comes to the fore, with “Hell Is My Purgatory” being the prime example. Here too guitarist Axel Ritt is given a good amount of space to stretch out in terms of his solo work, with the beats slammed down by Marcus Kniep (who also doubles up on keyboards - presumably not at the same time) mighty in their explosions.

Right across the album there’s an element of bombastic grandeur, although the chest-beating never quite tumbles into the ridiculous. Instead, the intensity comes across as much more genuine than many of the bands who have followed in Grave Digger’s wake over the years. And in many ways it’s worth remembering that while what we hear on Symbol Of Eternity may not be exactly innovative, it does come from a band who helped fix this style of metal in place for the many who have followed.

An album that’s sure to delight this band’s faithful followers and impress those, like me, who have for whatever reason never taken that plunge with Grave Digger before, Symbol Of Eternity delivers in all the right ways.

Track Listing
1. The Siege Of Akkon

2. Battle Cry

3. Hell Is My Purgatory

4. King of the Kings

5. Symbol of Eternity

6. Nights of Jerusalem

7. Heart of a Warrior

8. Grace of God

9. Sky of Swords

10. Holy Warfare

11. The Last Crusade

12. Hellas Hellas

Added: September 1st 2022
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Grave Digger online
Hits: 605
Language: english

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