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Metal/Prog Metal CD Reviews

Storm Warrior

Heading Northe

Review by Greg Olma

From what I can gather, this is the fourth official CD from StormWarrior (a couple of tapes and a vinyl disc preceded their 2002 full length).  I'm not much into viking folklore but these guys present it wrapped in a great metal way that I can excuse the cheeziness of some of the lyrics. I have spun this CD about a half dozen times now and it gets better with each play.  Aside from some of the lyrics (but then again, that is their "thing"), I can't find much fault with these guys.  Heading Horthe is well played and produced but most of all, it is really fun to listen to.  It brings me back to a time when metal was fun, and shouldn't it be enjoyable to listen to music?

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2008  Volume 4 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
And The Horde Catteth For Oden
This is just an intro with some sound effects.
Heading Northe
The CD really opens with this fast power metal tune.  I know that's redundant but this is really a fast song.  It has a little of that Hammerfall battle chanting in it.
Metal Legacy
Things slip more into a standard rocker on this cut.  It still retains the main theme of warriors and battles but done in a more traditional metal style.
The Holy Cross
This epic tune starts with the sound of horses galloping and quickly moves into very heavy yet melodic mode.  As the song progresses, it has a fast Iron Maiden sound to it.  It is the longest track here, clocking in at over 7 minutes, but it never gets boring.
Iron Gods
Power metal is the name of the game here but somehow it can't match the excitement of the previous cuts.  It fits with the rest of the material but somehow falls short of any real lasting impression.
Ragnarok
The CD slips again with this filler track.  It is pretty much the same as "Iron Gods."
The Revenge Of Asa Lande
Wow, just when I was thinking the rest of the disc was a wash out, StormWarrior come up with this epic sounding winner.  Not only is there some solid riffing but I was surprised at how catchy the chorus was considering the title.
Remember The Oathe
This song is very much like "Heading Northe."  They are both really fast rockers and the lyrical content is a bit cheeesy, it also brings back a feeling of when heavy metal was fun.
Lion Of The Northe
While starting off very fast like the previous song, it slips into a nice metal groove towards the end.  Plus, the guitar solo here is very good and has a bit of a Maiden vibe to it.
Into The Battle
Although this is one of the shorter tunes, it still packs quite a punch.  It has a great groove and it almost swaggers along as opposed to galloping in power metal style.  This is definitely one of the stand out tracks on Heading Northe.
And The Valkyries Ride
This is an outro that basically sounds like soundtrack music.  It kind of book-ends the CD.
 
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