'Run With The Wolf'
MY KINGDOM MUSIC
There seem to be more bands with the name Drakkar than most would care to count. This review however refers to the 20-year Italian power metal veterans and their fifth full-length studio album 'Run With The Wolf'. Power metal may be scoffed at by a few, and yes it has been unfairly lampooned in the past, but its hard to deny its pedigree with bands like Helloween, Hammerfall, Symphony X, Stratovarious, and Blind Guardian at the helm. While bands such as Drakkar keep adding originality and passion to the genre.
The band's new album is both epic and direct. Soaring guitars, big choruses, symphonic keyboards, sing-a-long vocals and thunderous rhythms cut a fine shape on tracks such as 'Under The Banners Of War', 'Watcher Of The Wall', 'Burning', 'Gods Of Thunder', and 'Call Of The Dragon Blood'. While tracks such as 'Rise Of The Dark Lords', and 'Southern Cross' adding drama and poise to the track list.
The bonus CD offers up some more epic cuts with 'Coming From The Past', 'Dragonheart' and 'Pure Of Heart' standing alongside the main track list with ease. But it is the symphonic strains of the folk-infused 'Galadriel' Song' that trumps them all.
It would be nice to hear more of the folk elements coming through, and for the band to slow things down and even go instrumental to break the track list up. But on the whole it is a decent collection of songs that is well performed and well produced.
'Run With The Wolf' my not be a genre defining album. But the Italian's do it well. Everything a power metal fan could want is present and correct. It would be nice to have a little more variety, but there is something charming about their balls-to-the-wall execution. It's a fine way to mark 25 years doing what you love.