Alestorm - No Grave But The Sea review


146 users:
Band: Alestorm
Album: No Grave But The Sea
Release date: May 2017

01. No Grave But The Sea
02. Mexico
03. To The End Of The World
04. Alestorm
05. Bar Ünd Imbiss
06. Fucked With An Anchor
07. Pegleg Potion
08. Man The Pumps
09. Rage Of The Pentahook
10. Treasure Island

Alestorm has developed a taste for songwriting that weighs heavily on party-style dance-metal tunes that could fly in any nightclub if they didn't smell so strongly of marine life, and No Grave But The Sea delivers the hearty "Mexico" and heavily hardcore "Alestorm" to follow up "Magnetic North" and the cover of Taio Cruz's "Hangover." It's good to see the band embrace such a fun, high-energy, and catchy style, especially because the strictly traditional folk metal sea shanties have begun to sound a little formulaic. I don't know if Alestorm could in good faith abandon its "serious" metal roots entirely and become a purely party band, but it's a shame they don't at least do so more often.

Sunset On The Golden Age avoided running out of steam by incorporating a wide spread of musical influences and switching gears frequently; No Grave But The Sea recognizes the wisdom of that album and continues searching for new fads to incorporate into Alestorm's repertoire. "To The End Of The World" is by and large another sort of fast, folksy questing tune that helps fill the band's straight metal quota and doesn't offer much that songs like "That Famous Ol' Spiced" or "The Huntmaster" hadn't already done before, but you can hear aspects of Gloryhammer peeking through in the chorus, a pleasant diversion that breaks up the song a bit and makes it more memorable. Elliott Vernon's harsh vocals, playing the lead role in "Alestorm" and featured prominently in several other tracks, continue to add new flavors to the band. These moments of excitement, however, don't extend to tracks like "Bar Und Imbiss," "Pegleg Potion," or "Rage Of The Pentahook," which are pretty rote.

"Fucked With An Anchor" is less the barnacle-encrusted Cannibal Corpse tribute I had hoped for and more a jaunty, profane nursery rhyme drawn out with Alestorm-standard verses. Its blithely stupid chorus is as catchy as the implement in question, but the song is a little too boring and airheaded to sustain my interest for very long. The lengthy finisher, "Treasure Island," is less dynamic and inspired than Alestorm's other long tracks, and while it has a few proud moments and is better than the rest of the album's second half, it gives the impression of being just an extra-long average Alestorm song as opposed to a true epic like "Sunset On The Golden Age" or "Death Throes Of The Terrorsquid."

No Grave But The Sea isn't the powerhouse follow-up that Sunset On The Golden Age deserves; it's as entertaining as any Alestorm album, but doesn't offer a whole lot that will stay in my head when I'm through listening. Nonetheless, it has its fair share of new Alestorm classics and keeps up the dumb fun even at its most unadventurous. Alestorm has really settled into its own sound over the last couple of albums; despite an ever-changing lineup, the band is tighter, more articulate, and a lot more comfortable having fun and being stupid than they were on the first few releases. The light-hearted, melody-heavy, unashamedly pop-influenced sound is right where this band belongs, and if in the future they can keep the songwriting as strong and consistent as it was on Sunset On The Golden Age, they'll have nothing to worry about.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 9
Songwriting: 6
Originality: 7
Production: 8


Written on 24.05.2017 by I'm the reviewer, and that means my opinion is correct.


Comments: 4   Visited by: 277 users
24.05.2017 - 16:15
I have no opinion on your review yet, because my preorder (with duck) hasn't arrived yet.

However, I worry a bit about the addition of harsh vocals; SotGA pushed it to the limit for my tastes, so I'm not really that pleased about your announcements about Vernon doing his thing in "several other tracks".
25.05.2017 - 21:18
I'm not a fan, but I'm glad they've evidently finally embraced what, in my opinion, was always their true sound.
30.05.2017 - 01:53
Bad English
Fucked With An Anchor has super intelecual lyrics, seems sex pistols wrote them somehow, punkish style. but seems what I kn ow from this, this is an party album ... girls listen, party album
Life is to short for LOVE, there is many great things to do online !!!

Stormtroopers of Death - ''Speak English or Die''

I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
23.06.2017 - 03:15
Fun album, kind of drops off after the halfway mark, though.
I lift weights and listen to metal

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