Rating:
8.5
Primal Fear - New Religion
31 August 2007


01. Sign Of Fear
02. Face The Emptiness
03. Everytime It Rains [feat. Simone Simons]
04. New Religion
05. Fighting The Darkness
    1 - Fighting The Darkness
    2 - The Darkness
    3 - Reprise
06. Blood On Your Hands
07. The Curse Of Sharon
08. Too Much Time
09. Psycho
10. World On Fire
11. The Man (That I Don't Know)
+ Fighting The Darkness [video] [digipack bonus]
+ Sign Of Fear [video] [digipack bonus]


Primal Fear have often been accused of sounding too much like the metal gods Judas Priest, but "Seven Seals" and now the latest effort from these German heavy metal heavyweights, "New Religion" are beginning to slowly push these remarks under the carpet as they edge away from the straight forward heavy, power metal style, and into more symphonic, ballad-oriented waters but still keeping that crushing metallic edge that they do so well.

"New Religion" is quite a stark contrast compared with the self titled debut or "Nuclear Fire" for example, but now the band sound more modern and the song writing is more mature in the way that every song is not just a great guitar riff with drums plodding along, but the album as a whole shows diversity. Ralf Scheepers has always had one of the best singing voices in metal and this album just solidifies that statement even more as "Sign Of Fear" kicks the album off in suitably heavy fashion, leading straight into the first slower song of the album "Face The Emptiness". Here the symphonies are prominent running through the song accompanied by Ralf Scheeper's majestic voice making the powerful chorus even more grand, but not to the degree that it sounds so pompous and over the top.

This is generally how the album proceeds; "Fighting The Darkness" is an awe-inspiring nine-minute epic and "The Curse Of Sharon" is another ultra catchy ballad-type similar to the aforementioned "Face The Emptiness". Simone Simons of Epica makes a somewhat commercial oriented appearance on "Everytime It Rains" but this track is one of the weakest on the album, it is a good job we have the inclusion of some more typical Primal Fear tracks in the form of the crushing "Blood On Your Hands", the speed metal influenced "Too Much Time" and typical power metal stomper "World On Fire".

Primal Fear have always delivered the goods in the past, they have "quality" written all over them and so there is definitely no reason to question them now. "New Religion" may catch a few people off guard that are expecting an album of unrelenting, one way, relatively simple power metal such as the self titled debut, but once the slight change in style has been adjusted to accommodate for, there is an album full of top quality melodic metal just waiting for you to fall in love with and sing along to. If you loved "Seven Seals" then I can guarantee this will be one of your top albums of the year.


Band profile: Primal Fear
Album: New Religion


 



Written on 27.10.2007 by
Baz Anderson
Member of Staff since 2006.
More reviews by Baz Anderson ››



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Beautiful War - 27.10.2007 at 19:51  
On first listen I was pretty unimpressed. I dunno, maybe I'll give it another go but I find Primal Fear albums very generic.
Bararey - 27.10.2007 at 20:15  
The release date for this album is mid January in the US, I could have had it a few weeks back at ProgPower, but I was too cheap to pay $17 for it, regretted it 3 hrs later, went back and it was sold out

And speaking of them sounding like Judas Priest, at the end of their show they introduced band members and when it came time to introduce the Vocalist, Mat said "Ralf Scheepers", and I was like man what's wrong with him can't even say Rob Halfrod's name right (yeah I realized minutes later it was time to go to sleep!)
Opium - 28.10.2007 at 03:14  
IMO, this is their worst album to date. All of the songs presented here are too polished, I was right in fearing the worst. On a whole, this verges on/towards pop, like no other metal album out there. I'd say it's worthy of a 6, the only thing that impresses me here is a couple of solos, that's all, otherwise I wouldn't hesitate to give it a much lower rating.
dismaleuphony - 28.10.2007 at 04:09  
Oh, I just don't like this release at all I've seen a few other reviews on this disc, praising the "epic" track "Fighting the Darkness"... what a terrible song! It's totally devoid of emotion and is just epic for the sake of being epic. Length does not make a song epic... The only song I even care about on this disc is "Face The Emptiness," which would have been just an average track on a better release; but here it's the only thing I can deal with. The song "Everytime It Rains," with the one and only Simone Simons is a cheap pop/metal song that shows even a great singer sounds useless in a bad song. What a letdown for her compared to Epica's work.

This CD just turns my stomach, and I can barely get through it. I just don't know what you see in it Primal Fear's ballads are just whiny emptiness, not an "epic" experience. I don't make it a mission to disagree so heavily with most reviews, but I just don't understand this (or other reviewers perspectives)....
Jari - 28.10.2007 at 10:37  
Seven Seals was a perfect album but this was a disapointment for me + the production is a pretty weird, Ralf sounds like an robot on some songs.
Baz Anderson - 01.11.2007 at 20:40  
wow, I am really surprised - this will be one of my favourite albums of the year. Primal Fear always do it for me

I thought the change in style, how it sounds more commercial, would displease some people, but I thought the people that really liked the band would just get over it and hear the album for the great release it is
Beautiful War - 01.12.2007 at 23:16  
This album seems more like a 6 or 6.5 than a 8.5. It sounds exactly like Primal Fear's other albums, with a few corny, ineffective ballads thrown in there. "Everytime It Rains" is pretty much the worst song they've ever written.
ThunderAxe1989 - 03.12.2007 at 02:12  
wow i had no idea they were coming out with a new album!
ThunderAxe1989 - 13.12.2007 at 23:57  
Dammit man! I cannot find samples to stream anywhere!!
BMR Monkey - 23.12.2007 at 19:33  
kick ass Band
AnarChrist - 03.01.2008 at 00:51  
I have to agree with dismaleuphony.I liked all previous Primal Fear releases,even "Devil's Ground".But this is just too...plain."Face The Emptiness" makes it to passed years power/heavy collection disc though.
+{Jonas}+ - 11.02.2008 at 21:49  
I prefer their previous stuff, the fast and full of "great guitar riff with drums plodding along" as teh review says.
Jay - 07.04.2008 at 18:34  
I really like this album and I'm a huge Priest fan so I just can't believe how much Ralf Scheepers sounds like Rob Halford (when he decides to)! Just puts chills down my spine. Go Ralph!
Mountain King - 29.07.2010 at 22:11  
Gio is right! this is the best Primal Fear album and trust me i have all Primal Fear albums except the most recent 16.6: (Before The Devil Knows You're Dead)! Sign Of Fear is a killer, and fighting the darkness is the best PM ballad and one of the best ever made. This album is way better than the debut album and better than anything they have done before...
Angelic Storm - 30.07.2010 at 13:17  
Written by Jari on 28.10.2007 at 10:37

Seven Seals was a perfect album but this was a disapointment for me


It was a disappointment for me too, and probably the PF album I like least. There are some great songs like "Sign Of Fear", "Face The Emptiness", and "Too Much Time", but overall I found it a little bit weak. And "Everytime It Rains" is probably my worst PF song. Im not a fan of female operatic metal anyways, so Im a bit biased, and I think the song would have been a little better without her vocals, but it's still not great. "The Man That I Dont Know" is a great ballad though! xD
Baz Anderson - 30.07.2010 at 15:29  
"Seven Seals" is one of my favourites, while this album is one of my least favourites...
Just goes to show how Primal Fear appeal to different people.
RavenKing - 30.07.2010 at 17:36  
Written by Baz Anderson on 30.07.2010 at 15:29

"Seven Seals" is one of my favourites, while this album is one of my least favourites...
Just goes to show how Primal Fear appeal to different people.


This comment doesn't fit with your review. Or perhaps your opinion changed over time.
Baz Anderson - 30.07.2010 at 17:53  
Written by RavenKing on 30.07.2010 at 17:36

This comment doesn't fit with your review. Or perhaps your opinion changed over time.

Primal Fear always put out good albums - this is a great album, but just not one of my favourites.
RavenKing - 30.07.2010 at 17:54  
I understand now.
Angelic Storm - 30.07.2010 at 17:59  
Written by Baz Anderson on 30.07.2010 at 17:53
Primal Fear always put out good albums - this is a great album, but just not one of my favourites.


This is exactly my view as well. Its far from being a bad album, but if I was asked which PF album I liked least, Id say "New Religion" without a second thought.

I thought the last album was a great return to form. Still not as great as my absolute faves, but it was more consistent than the previous album and a much better listen. xD

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