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Battle Beast: Bringer Of Pain
Battle Beast Bringer Of Pain CD Album Review

Battle Beast: Bringer Of Pain

Melodic/Heavy/Power Metal
4.5/5.0

Pretty much on cue, Finland's Battle Beast reveals a new album every two years, the latest being Bringer Of Pain. With this album, they parted ways with guitarist and principal songwriter Anton Kabanen, with Joona Bjorkroth, a long time friend of the band, becoming his replacement. Otherwise, musically speaking, Battle Beast sticks with their brand of melodic heavy power metal.

Battle Beast Band Photo

Battle Beast

Yet having said that, after one or two listens, something seemed different with Bringer Of Pain. This is definitely heavy metal, but Battle Beast has really turned up the rock groove that courses through these songs. Additionally, stealing a page from AOR, the songs have more hooks in their arrangements, whether by the chord structure, vocal arrangement, refrains, or simply the essential use of harmony and melody in the same. Those hooks become pretty damn catchy, making this album more heavy metal rock. You hear this within Straight To The Heart, Familiar Hell, the speed monster Bringer Of Pain, Beyond The Burning Skies and its amazing vocal arrangement, and the interesting Dancing With The Beast. I call that song interesting because its beat and groove moves like "dance" music, inferred by the title, making it sound like heavy metal disco. It's kind of weird actually, especially when the band declares that they're "100% heavy metal, 0% bullshit." Some "true" heavy metal fans may find that song out of character for the genre.

Nevertheless, Battle Beast can still deliver the heavy metal goods. Despite the slight synth beginning, riff-wise, Lost In Wars is one of the heaviest songs here and adds a touch of growling vocals. The metal anthem Beyond The Burning Skies was mentioned earlier, and you can add the closing metal ballad Far From Heaven as something similar. It almost entirely turns on the vocal arrangement over the lush symphonic layer, and the guitar solo is rather subdued. Finally, a production note: I think this is the first Battle Beast album where vocalist Noora Louhimo rises in the mix, rather than being overwhelmed by the heavy metal.

All in all, I think Bringer Of Pain is probably the best Battle Beast album to date. It's musically consistent for the band, yet has some definite diversity and interesting twists. Easily recommended.

Battle Beast - Familiar Hell



CraigHartranft.net - New fiction, crime fiction by Craig Hartranft

The Bottom Line

All in all, I think Bringer Of Pain is probably the best Battle Beast album to date. It's musically consistent for the band, yet has some definite diversity and interesting twists. Easily recommended.

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