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Primal Fear - 'Rulebreaker' http://rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/13/0f/b7/primal-fear-rulebreaker-91-1450121532.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     December 14, 2015    
 
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Bombastic, majestic and fantastic!

Much as my tastes cover everything from Thrash to AOR, Classic Hard Rock to Progressive Metal (or Rock), there's a primeval thirst within that can still only be quenched by old-school Heavy Metal. The fact that I was in my early teens when the NWOBHM kicked in probably has a lot to do with that, but gut-wrenching riffs delivered with power and sophistication seem to hit the spot like nothing else can. Judas Priest were the de-facto masters thirty-five years ago when my warped view on reality was still being formed, but in recent years that mantle has slowly but surely passed to German sabre rattlers Primal Fear.

Formed the best part of two decades ago now by bassist Mat Sinner (Sinner) and former Gamma Ray vocalist Ralf Scheepers (initially as a way of keeping the latter in the business after he lost out to Ripper Owens in the race to replace Rob Halford in Priest), PF quickly became one of the major players on the then re-emerging Metal scene, as well as the main focus for all involved. And to be honest, they've pretty much been at the spearhead ever since, a string of great albums like 'Nuclear Fire', 'New Religion' and 'Delivering The Black' (to name but three) always keeping them one step ahead of the competition.

What I've always found impressive about Primal Fear (or indeed anything Sinner has been involved in over the years) is that within the basic Classic Metal framework – scything riffs, searing solos and rabble rousing vocals – they always manage to push the parameters to the limits and make their albums as diverse as possible whilst still staying true to their roots. New album 'Rulebreaker' follows exactly that same tried and tested blueprint, but once again manages to pack an almighty punch!

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Fast tracks, slow tracks, epics... you want it, you got it! After a brief but beguiling intro that could easily have come from some 'Alien' remake, opener 'Angels Of Mercy' roars in astride a real Harley-Davidson of a riff that just lives and breathes 'Painkiller'... Scheepers still screams like a banshee from hell when he needs to, and the blitzkrieg of guitars just knocks your senses into the middle of next week! Without pausing for breath they then launch into the decidedly Accept-like 'The End Is Near'; again, another venomous riff fest with a deliciously twisted hook.

At the other end of the scale, the eleven minute plus 'We Walk Without Fear' is a brooding masterpiece that turns into a real guitar tour-de-force, whilst the grinding 'The Devil In Me' (my current favourite) has a statesman-like gravitas that draws you in from the get go.

In summary... bombastic, majestic and fantastic!

Dave Cockett

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Comments (3)add comment

Adriano said:

...
I'm a great fan of Ralf, since Gamma Ray and also his work in Primal Fear. I've seen Primal Fear several times, and they (almost) never let me down. This album, at first, doesn't seen so great, but it grows and grows every listenig. Rulebreaker has everything that a Primal Fear fan wants.
 
January 09, 2016
Votes: +1

Ptrac30 said:

...
Seems to have picked right up where Delivering the Black left off.Have to give them credit for delivering to the fans what they have come to expect. "In Metal we Trust" sounds like it was written for Dream Evil. Still a great track. "The End is Near" chorus will be one that will have the crowd going nuts at live shows. I'd say the album puts its best songs out early and starts to wane by the end in terms of its power. "we Walk without Fear" is a long song that might take things off track a bit but it is still very enjoyable. Fortunately, the speedy "Final Call" brings things back to full blast. very enjoyable, pop this on during a workout. Primal Fear embraces some Judas priest rudiments but has also come into its own sound at this point.
 
January 29, 2016
Votes: +0

Ptrac30 said:

...
Seems to have picked right up where Delivering the Black left off.Have to give them credit for delivering to the fans what they have come to expect. "In Metal we Trust" sounds like it was written for Dream Evil. Still a great track. "The End is Near" chorus will be one that will have the crowd going nuts at live shows. I'd say the album puts its best songs out early and starts to wane by the end in terms of its power. "we Walk without Fear" is a long song that might take things off track a bit but it is still very enjoyable. Fortunately, the speedy "Final Call" brings things back to full blast. very enjoyable, pop this on during a workout. Primal Fear embraces some Judas priest rudiments but has also come into its own sound at this point.
 
January 29, 2016
Votes: +0

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