Review - Hammer King "Hammer King"
What is up with the German power metal and their hammers? The fourth album from Hammer King launches soon and it was time to see what all the hype was about. Their great music videos aside, the music needs to stand on its own two feet and prove it’s competent, interesting, and all around worth your time. Hammer King, consisting of Titan Fox V (vocals, guitar), Gino Wilde (guitar), Gladius Thundersword (bass), and Dolph Aiden Macallan (drums), released their debut album Kingdom of the Hammer King back in 2015. Since then, the band was able to continue consistent releases until 2018’s Poseidon Will Carry Us Home. No doubt the three year gap, which is better than most bands still, is due to the state of the world, but the new album Hammer King is ready to go.
Opening with “Awaken the Thunder” is easily the best call that Hammer King could have made. The opening track sets the pace very quickly with its anthemic chorus, and melodic, almost Amon Amarth style of riffs throughout. Not to mention a killer solo to boot, which is always one of the biggest bonuses to power metal. The huge anthemic verses done end here either, absolutely no disrespect to Titan Fox V, but he does not look like he should be able to nail these notes as seamlessly as he does. If you need an example of how high this band can soar, it comes immediately after with the second track, “Baptized By The Hammer”. Oh right, get ready for a lot of “hammer” talk, because with Hammer King, it’s hammer time.
While the big, hefty power metal songs continue through the album with”Hammershlag” and “In The Name Of The Hammer”, Hammer King aren’t a one trick band, and Hammer King isn’t a one trick album. Anyone keeping up with the singles will know that “Atlantis (Epilogue)” takes a much more mid tempo approach. The best part of these songs is how heavy they are, a huge emphasis on the vocals, which is impressive that anyone can put more focus on the vocals in power metal. This is true as well for “Onward To Victory”, and if you want heavy this is exactly where to go. Straight forward, mid tempo, and a massive hook with the main riff. This is the ultimate crowd pleaser song, certain to go down well at any gig.
The thing is, a lot of the songs mentioned come in the first half of the album, which makes it seem like this album may be a bit front loaded. That couldn’t be further from the truth though, from front to back, from “Awaken The Thunder” to “King Of Kings”, Hammer King is certain to keep the interest of any heavy metal or power metal fan. Hammer King have such a sing-a-long style of songwriting that is heavy, but easily accessible to most that it’s hard not to find something to love. In terms of power metal released so far this year, this is a huge step ahead of anything else that’s come across my path thus far. It’s hard to see anything topping what Hammer King brought to the table with their self-titled release.