4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 28 September 2000
If you've heard Manowar before, then you'll know what to expect. This album follows on from "Fighting The World" and "Kings Of Metal" with more of the same. That said, it's not quite as melodic as those two, and it's lacking that spark that makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. The album is let down by the terminally boring drum solo "Armor of the Gods", and to a lesser extent "Burning", a track with vast amounts of potential that's never quite realized. Redeeming features, though, include the stunning "The power of thy sword", a serious contender for the best Manowar track ever written.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 14 November 1999
The best Manowar album, digitally produced for the ultimate Manowar experience! If you want to buy one Manowar album, then buy this one, some excellent choral productions, and some epic sounds that some up the true men of metal, please buy, before you die!!
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on 25 September 2004
The following review was written by me for The Metal Garage [...]
Opinions on Manowar are pretty much divided in two. There are those who hail them as the kings of true metal, and those who just consider them to be rather goofy and laughable. Just looking at the band pictures, it's easy to see why people go with the latter; as their costumes are quite ludicrous, and their lyrics are so damn cheesy they are laughable at times. But look beyond the lyrics and costumes and you will notice that Manowar are one hell of a heavy metal band. Now onto 'The Triumph Of Steel'...
The album starts off with the 29 minute 'Achilles, Agony and Ecstasy', which is an inconsistent song broken up into eight parts. It starts with a decent heavy metal song lasting the first two parts, and then goes into a cymbal solo (yes, a cymbal solo) and then a drum solo. These show what a good drummer Rhino is, but is a real bore to listen too. Toward the end of the drum solo a riff comes in and it seems the song will finally lead somewhere, but then the music stops to go onto the next part. Fifteen minutes in and the song finally gets going again, with part 5 being an epic piece, leading into part 6, a decent fast heavy metal song. Then comes the bass solo, as present in most Manowar albums. It is impressive and shows Joey DeMaio is a very good bass player, but as with the drum and cymbal solos it's a bore and is something you'll most likely skip after a couple listens. The song ends with 'The Glory Of Achilles', the third good part within 'Achilles, Agony and Ecstasy'. If this song didn't include the solos, and was just the three decent parts combined, it would have been good but unfortunately this song is far too inconsistent. The remaining seven songs are good, typical Manowar, with the highlights being 'The Power of thy Sword' with its incredibly catchy chorus, 'The Demon's Whip', and 'Master Of The Wind.' Self-proclaimed best bass player ever Joey DeMaio does a superb job on bass throughout the album, and more than makes up for the lack of a second guitarist. Rhino pounds away at his drums excellently and is very tight when using the double kick drums, which he uses on the faster parts of the album. Eric Adams puts on a great vocal performance and is one of my favourite singers. He has a very theatrical voice and his falsetto screams are just brilliant. The album finishes with 'Master Of The Wind', a great ballad. Though the lyrics are extremely cheesy here: 'Fly away to a rainbow in the sky, Gold is at the end for each of us to find', it's a very good, uplifting song and a fitting way to end the album.
'The Triumph Of Steel' would be a welcome addition to the collection of any heavy metal fan who doesn't mind a bit of cheese in his (or her of course) music, and for everyone else, I leave you with a Manowar quote: 'Suffer and die slowly listening to our music.'
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 8 April 2003
The Triumph of Steel was Manowar's heaviest album to date (1992),and in most respects was business as usual...viking metal,epic tunes and outstanding musicianship. But there are some subtle changes compared to previous albums.Firstly,the band's taste for progressive metal,which had always been evident ('Bridge of Death' from Hail to England is still a classic), is taken further here with the 28 minute monster opening track.Taken as a whole it is a bit drawn out, but if you listen to some of the sections as individual songs it is very good indeed.Secondly,the influence of thrash metal is seen, as the some tracks have a noticeable thrash element.However, no fear,this remains a classic Manowar power/thrash release.Dave Shankle plays guitar in place of the Boss,while the drummer,Rhino, is absolutely amazing,drumming with superb technique and power.This was one of 1992's best rock releases.
In the same year that Grunge was well and truly selling billions of CDs worldwide, US Heavy Metal legends Manowar released their seventh full-length studio album – 1992’s The Triumph Of Steel.
It must have been no easy task following up their immensely popular and loyally beloved 1988 release Kings Of Metal, nor must it have been easy having to train up a new drummer and guitarist after losing Scott Columbus and Ross “The Boss” Friedman. In fact, nor can it have been fun trying to promote an album of blistering, powerful, OTT Heavy Metal after “Man In The Box” and “Smells Like Teen Spirit” changed what must’ve felt like every journalist on earth’s priorities in the pre-internet culture of the day.
Despite all that was going against them, Manowar released what must surely be one of their greatest ever albums (certainly its my personal favourite at any rate). Call it ambition, or call it arrogance, but the band even opened up the record with a twenty-minute long song. A song with a bass solo, a drum solo so indulgent that it has a separate solo for the cymbals and for the drums, two minutes of somber guitar violining… all telling the story of Achillies and Hector from Greek Mythology. The world wanted “Touch Me I’m Sick” …Manowar gave ‘em “Achilles, Agony and Ecstasy in Eight Parts.”
Despite how easy it is to skip a twenty-minute album opener with three solos in it, the song isn’t poor. In fact, some sections of it are absolute genius, such as the furious Thrashy “Death Hector’s Reward” part, which feels like the musical equivalent of being battered upside the head.
After that, the first normal-length track comes in. Its my favourite track on the album, or by the band. “Metal Warriors” is the most perfectly-pitched, sing-along tribute to Heavy Metal that’s ever been written. Ludicrous to the point of featuring the lyric “If you’re not into Metal you are not my friend” and yet musically out of this world. Its some kind of supercharged version of Kiss’ “I Love It Loud” filled with Painkiller screams, mountain-top chants and the screech of guitars that feel only-barely in control.
There’s more blistering speed, in the sword-and-scorcery realm of “Ride The Dragon” with its constant double-kicks and incredibly catchy chorus.
The band then take a different tack, choosing to sing about Native Americans in a surprisingly tasteful way, in an interesting mid-paced affair that sonically evokes cowboy movies subtly, but doesn’t loose that Manowar sound. Maybe they were jealous of Anthrax? Who cares why they did it, but it works, really well!
Then they follow it up with another mid-paced track called “Burning” which you’d imagine might be a momentum killer, but is actually one of the more interesting compositions in the band’s catalogue. It’s a bit different than their usual any of their usual directions… epics, ballads, rousing anthems or blistering speed. It’s a nice change of pace. Sort of experimental, with a lot of emphasis on dynamics and Eric Adams trying out as many vocal techniques as he can imagine.
“Power Of Thy Sword” comes next, and its what I would consider the quintessential Manowar song. If you wonder if the band are for you, this is one of the tracks you should use to decide. Its got everything that’s great about the band in spades. Its so powerful, OTT and fun. Its beyond catchy, the solo is awesome, there’s slow bits, fast bits and there’s a touch of the orchestral epic-ness that the band aspire to. With this one song, you get a good musical, technical and lyrical picture of Manowar… oh, and by the way its a great song too!
Even if the last one felt good enough to be an album closer, it doesn’t stop there. There’s more Metal in the form of “The Demon’s Whip.” A robust, interesting track which is half crushing Sabbath-inspired Doom and half double-kick Thrash attack, almost-ending the album with a jarring reverse-whiplash effect as the too-slow doom accelerates out of control to the tune off way-too-loud whip samples.
It all closes with the grand, cinematic, vocally-impressive “Master Of The Wind” which kind of evokes Greg Lake-era King Crimson with its chiming bells, big reverb, dynamic production and haunting singing. Its probably the best ballad/orchestral-track that Manowar ever did. Not something to be skipped, but a genuine album highlight in itself.
Overall; Triumph Of Steel is a really diverse and almost strange album. Despite its seeming lack of focus, it really feels like Manowar just doing everything they could think of to absolute perfection. Anthem – nailed. Ballad – absolutely nailed. Fast bits – nailed. Slow bits – nailed. Exploring new ideas – nailed. Keeping true to what makes Manowar, Manowar – nailed. It might not have gotten the attention it deserved at the time, but for my money this album is a straight up-and-down masterpiece that shows what superb musicians, performers and songwriters Manowar are from every possible angle. Highly Recommended!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
on 1 December 2004
ManOwaR never cease to amaze me, they are truely awesome the best metal band ever and thats it, metallica, slayer, maiden, megadeth, all fall at the feet of the largely unnoticed band.
Joey de maio is the greatest bass player ever, nad eric adams has the grestest voice ever!
This album is great, check out the 26 min long opener and strap yourself in,
on 24 June 2008
In my opinion this is a masterpiece, i do understand some of the complaints of this album. For example the first track Achilles, Agony & Ectasy in 8 parts, the song is a masterpiece but it would of been better to cut it down a bit. Favourite songs for me have to be Achilles, Agony & Ectasy In 8 parts, The Power Of thy Sword & The Demons Whip (The last minute is unbelievably fast). There is no way i'd call this their weakest effort you may not like but it is a masterpiece. This is probably their strongest effort and it is one off their best albums. This album, Hail To England & Fighting The World are in my opinion their best but i love all Manowar albums. You cannot not like this album it's breathtaking yeah the reviewers have some good complaints about it but give it a chance. JUST PLAY THIS ALBUM AS LOUD AS POSSIBLE AND YOU WILL BE BLOWN AWAY.
on 15 June 2004
This album is the epitome of what Power Metal should sound like. Every thing is there that you would expect; heavy/catchy guitar riffs, groove bass lines, double bass drumming and high/agressive pitched vocals. You will see what I mean when you give this a spin at high volume, to feel it's intensity! I was on holiday and around 12 when my older cousin let me listen to this and I was like WOW first thing I got to do when I get back home is buy this album. Even today I still like listening to it. I think this is the only Power Metal album I own because I did not bother to explore other bands of this sub genre because I got into rap shortly after but then returned to metal like 6 years later and now listen to more extreme forms of Metal. Go buy it if you like Power Metal NOW!!
on 10 August 2008
A great album, mostly a concept release concerning the Trojan War.
The songs are strong, the production and musicianship are amazing!
The bass guitar is awesome here, very upfront & aggressive with a couple of really good solos, there's a lengthy drum solo and lots of strong riffs and powerful vocals. There's some keyboard/Classical elements that
work really well and the lyrics are faithful to the spirit of the Iliad.
Final track, Master Of The Wind is possibly Manowar's best/most epic ballad!
Great artwork for the cover & liner notes...
on 10 February 2004
This album got me into Manowar and power metal. It kicks ass.
Whereas i normally skip the first track (at about 30 minutes long I can be forgiven, right?) it sounds epic, except the four minute drum solo which can drag on (it display's Rhino's explosive skills pretty well though). At 30 minutes long the song basically is an album in itself.
The rest of the album is extremely listenable, with "Ride The Dragon", "The Power Of Thy Sword" and "Master Of The Wind" being the highlights of this spectacular album.