Unleashed - Hammer Battalion review


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Band: Unleashed
Album: Hammer Battalion
Release date: June 2008

01. The Greatest Of All Lies
02. Long Before Winter's Call
03. Your Children Will Burn
04. Hammer Battalion
05. This Day Belongs To Me
06. Marching Off To War
07. Entering The Hall Of The Slain
08. Black Horizon
09. Carved In Stone
10. Warriors Of Midgard
11. Midsummer Solstice
12. Home Of The Brave
13. I Want You Dead

Two years only after the release date of the really good "Midvinterblot", the Swedish Death metallers of Unleashed are back one more time with an album of great Scandinavian Death Metal. The band never changes its way to play and compose Death Metal but we seriously don't care because in general the final product just proves that these guys know what they do. Like with "Midvinterblot" I'm sure that all the fans of Unleashed will like a lot the new "Hammer Battalion".

I really hope that you still like the Viking aspect that we can find on some songs of Unleashed because with "Hammer Battalion" you'll have a lot of such music. Unleashed plays Death Metal of course but like with "Midvinterblot", "Hammer Battalion" is really influenced by Viking spirit. Unleashed has always been a band which claims to be Nordic, with their lyrics but also with their music but I think that they're clearly more into Viking music now than in the past. I'm not saying too that the new Unleashed is in the vein of bands like Turisas or Amon Amarth but it's easy to hear the "Viking" influences in the really good Death Metal of the band. "Hammer Battalion" is an angry album, as always the lyrics say what the band wants to say and as an example, they're one more time about war and anti-monotheism if you see what I meanů But even if the band plays a melodic Death (a lot more melodic than the first albums), "Hammer Battalion" is heavy loud and aggressive. Some songs like "The Greatest Of A Lies" or "Hammer Battalion" are two perfect examples of this mix of melody and aggression, the riffs are pure shrapnel but the choruses are epic and sound like some real anthems to the old Gods. "Hammer Battalion" is not the heavier album of the discography of the Swedish combo but with "Midvinterblot" they're probably the most engaged and representative of the message that the band wants to give.

The production of the album is great and the cover a la Motörhead perfectly represents the general ambiance of the album. Maybe that some people, especially old fans, will find that "Hammer Battalion" is too melodic for them but I think that the band is real on this album and that they give the best of themselves to send their message. "Hammer Battalion" is a true album and if you like European Death Metal I'm sure that you'll like this release, definitely it's better and cannot be compared to all the Gothenburg Death Metal bands that we can listen to everywhere nowadays.

"Hammer Battalion" is a really good album which follows the spirit of "Midvinterblot" so if you like the previous album of Unleashed's discography, I'm sure that you'll enjoy a lot their new release. "Hammer Battalion" is full of great songs and must be considered as a real and unique album of Viking Death Metal. "Hammer Battalion" is a must for the Metalheads who like Death and Metal from the North.

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

Written by Jeff | 02.06.2008



Comments: 5   Visited by: 170 users
03.06.2008 - 04:57
Urban Monster
I'll check this one out, not too late, but i doubt it could stand alongside with Midvinterblot, that was just almost a masterpiece, but can't affirm til' heard.
Any man can stand adversity, but to test his character give him power - A. Lincoln
05.06.2008 - 13:08
Eternal Flames
Nice review. I'm eager to hear this one when it comes out.

It would be difficult to top Midvinterblot, although from the review I get the feeling that Hammer Battalion is just as good as it's predecessor.
07.06.2008 - 02:28
The Shooter
Very good album.
11.08.2008 - 07:38
Jason W.
It's great to see that Unleashed has continued with their new sound started on Midvinterblot, since it's given a fresh sound to their music which hadn't interested me much since the first half of the 90s (and I'd honestly forgotten about them until a few years ago). The only downside with this release to me is that the arrangements are so repetitive that I was able to predict some of the solowork while listening to it the first time But, then again, I wasn't expecting originality... I prefer Midvinterblot a bit more, but this CD is equally enjoyable in short doses
"After silence that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music." - Aldous Huxley
08.04.2010 - 03:04

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