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Falconer: Grime vs. Grandeur

Having never heard Falconer before, our Publisher of SoT sent me a copy of Grime vs. Grandeur, saying that I would really like Falconer, given my classic metal background. He was so right!!

Falconer records with Metal Blade, and its members hail from Germany. From start to finish, Grime vs. Grandeur is an all out shredfest of the best kind. Lead vocalist Kristoffer Gobel is excellent throughout. Stefan Weinerhall and Jimmy Hedlund provide superb double axe crunching guitar playing, while Magnus Linhardt and Karsten Larsson lay the groundwork with their bass and drums.

Grime vs. Grandeur starts with "Emotional Skies", which kicks off with a very thrashy riff, before launching into a great metal song, showing off Falconer's great vocal harmonies, complete with female backup vocals. "Purgatory Time" features some excellent double leads by Weinerhall and Hedlund, as well as some great drumming by Larsson. In "I Refuse", Gobel really shows off his vocal range. Grime vs. Grandeur does not show the least signs of letting up until "Humanity Overdose", which has more time changes. "The Assailant" is a favorite of mine, with its great intro riff. "No Tears For Strangers" is unique in that it has a riff ala 70's Deep Purple, while keeping with the times. "The Return" provides a small hint of thrashy and gruff vocals. "Jack The Knife" starts with church bells, and is Falconer's take on the whole Judas Priest Ripper thing. The closest that Falconer comes to an epic in this one is the 6:50 "Child Of The Wild".

All in all, this is a spectacular effort by an equally spectacular band. Fans of power metal with a hint of thrash will thoroughly enjoy Grime vs. Grandeur. I would certainly look forward to seeing Falconer on stage if and when they decide to tour the US.

track Listing
1. Emotional Skies
2. Purgatory Time
3. I Refuse
4. Humanity Overdose
5. The Assailant
6. Power
7. No Tears For Stangers
8. The Return
9. Jack the Knife
10. Child Of The Wild
11. Wake Up (Digipak bonus)
12. Rock 'n' Roll Devil (Bonus for Japanese release)

Added: January 28th 2006
Reviewer: Jack Toledano
Related Link: Falconer Website
Hits: 3225
Language: english

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» SoT Staff Roundtable Reviews:

Falconer: Grime vs. Grandeur
Posted by Ken Pierce, SoT Staff Writer on 2006-01-28 15:56:56
My Score:

The newest release by Falconer is certainly a great follow up to 2003's Sceptre Of Deception as once again Stefan Weinerhall has composed a solid slab of Metal for fans new and old. If this is your first time even hearing the name then this CD is something that will definitely make enjoying them a very easy task. There is so much in the terms of kick ass song writing and riffing that even I was impressed at first listen. I admit that I liked "Sceptre" and the band but one must take each release as a separate entity these days. There are a couple of differences that listeners should be aware about the band this time around. For starters the line up has changed with the mutual quit/firing of Anders and Peder from the last recording. They are ably replaced by Jimmy Hedlund (guitar) and Magnus Linhardt (bass). The other difference is that this is straight ahead Metal and not an epic story like the last one was. There are individual songs rather than connected segments that require a full CD listen to get the impact of. Weinerhall and Gobel each split the writing for this album and I feel that this allowed Gobel to really develop his own identity in the band this time around. On "Sceptre" he was new to the line up and performing ready to record material. Being responsible for 25% of the album makes this better for him and the group as a whole. "Emotional Skies" kicks the release off and lets you know that you are in for a metal treat. Great chops and a sing along chorus that will make you raise a glass of whatever very high as you join in the vocals. Weinerhall's guitar work is just as good as the last release and on "Power" both axe wielders showcase their skills. On "The Assailant" I was reminded of early Krokus from around their "Headhunter" years due to the drive this track held. "Child Of The Wild" closes the recording with a slamming dose of double bass and lightning guitar that I think even the most discerning critic will like. It's a consistent recording and shows a musical skill that should gain a lot of fans for Falconer. They join a sad number of bands that are excellent but under exposed due to the ever-changing Music Industry. Let's hope that bands like Hammerfall and EdGuy see it in the cards to bring them over when they again tour.

Falconer has proved to me on this recording that there is something about them that more people should look into. If you are a fan of Power Metal and traditional feel Heavy music then I think you have room in your CD Collection for some Falconer. Give it a shot because I think they are here to stay.

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