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Ruler: Descent Into Hades
Ruler - Descent Into Hades Music Review

Ruler: Descent Into Hades

Heavy Metal

Italy's Ruler has been around for ten years, but this is my first experience with the band. They got off to a quick start releasing back to back albums, in 2012 and 2013, Evil Nightmares and Rise To Power. They quickly followed these albums by hitting the road for gigs in their home country and across Europe. As it often happens, Ruler suffered some personnel changes, but now, after a six year delay, the band returns with their third long player, Descent Into Hades.

Ruler - Click For Larger Image


From the start, Ruler's desire has been to play classic heavy metal in the UK and European tradition. When listening there's little doubt that the band is taking a few pages from the New Wave of British Heavy Metal musical play book, with a healthy dose of speed metal tossed in. Their tunes have the many trademarks of that venerable tradition: strong guitar work in riffs and roaring leads, an often galloping pace from an ambitious rhythm section, and clean, sometimes soaring, sometimes screamo, metal vocals. At times, I felt that vocalist Daniele Valentini had a little Geddy Lee in his timbre. Curiously, or not, Ruler does this without twin guitar harmony and leads. Matt Baldoni is the sole axe slinger and he's quite up to the task. Fans, such as myself, who love their heavy metal with an abundance of guitar solos will not be disappointed with Baldoni's fret fireworks.

For the tunes, you'll find some galloping heavy metal with Black Hand, Queen Of Danger, and The Shunt. Baldoni lights up the start of Airstrip 1 with some sharp guitar work. With Melanie and the instrumental Descent Into Hades, you'll hear Ruler dropping some rock groove into their heavy metal. The closer Alibi trips you up with some light electric guitar before dropping into some steady metal. Later, about two-thirds in that light guitar work returns in a segue. In the end, if you enjoy classic heavy metal in the best tradition, you will enjoy Italy's Ruler and their latest album Descent Into Hades. Recommended.

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The Bottom Line

If you enjoy classic heavy metal in the best tradition, you will enjoy Italy's Ruler and their latest album Descent Into Hades. Recommended.

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