(r)Evolution - Digipack
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The career of Swedish heavy metal pioneers HAMMERFALL is one amazing march of triumph: After revolutionizing the genre by the end of the 90s, the Gothenburg based quintet released a total of eight studio albums, several compilations, live-releases and toured the globe relentlessly. Right after celebrating the 15th anniversary of their legendary debut Glory To The Brave, the band announced to be taking a creative break in 2013, only to treat the fans with the highly acclaimed live DVD Gates Of Dalhalla in late 2012.
"Absence makes the heart grow fonder, they say, and that was definitely true this time around," commented guitarist Oscar Dronjak. Not only has HAMMERFALL reclaiming their rightful place on top of the metal globe, but also taking things back to the roots in many ways. Once again the band has had production duties handled by none other than Fredrik Nordström, who helmed their two milestone releases Glory To The Brave and Legacy Of Kings in the early years of the band's history. Meanwhile vocalist Joacim Cans went to the United States for vocal recordings, working with James Michael (SCORPIONS, MOTLEY CRUE).
About the meaning of the title, (r)Evolution, Oscar Dronjak states: "The name comes from the second remake of the Planet Of The Apes movie, "Rise of…". In Swedish, it was called "Apornas Planet: (r)Evolution.", and the name stuck with me ever since I saw (and loved!) the movie. It seems like a fitting title for this album, since that's how I view it: we've taken everything that makes HammerFall HammerFall and evolved it. So I guess the revolution is that we've gone back to basics a little, yet still are moving forward."
Top Customer Reviews
Since then, I’ve been a little disappointed by other Hammerfall releases. It’s not that they’ve not been good, just that Crimson Thunder is just such a damn fine album that I’ve found it hard to compare. Until now.
(r)Evolution is a collection of stunning tracks, lovingly produced to show off the music as a whole and the lyrics in particular. Joacim’s vocals are as clear as anything Bruce Dickinson has wailed out over screaming guitars and a chugging baseline.
Hammerfall have, with (r)Evolution, mastered the art of heavy yet catchy. A classic metal sound with hooks that dig in and just can’t be pulled out.
While some tracks are better than others (“Hector’s Hymn” and “Origins” are quality), there isn’t really anything I would class as filler. There’s even a power-ballad-esque track in the form of “Winter Is Coming”.
If you liked the lead single, “Bushido”, then I’d be fairly confident in saying that you’ll like the rest of the album.
Hand on heart, I think Crimson Thunder still just pips this one, but albums by bands are a bit like Doctor Who and James Bond – the one you started off with is often very hard to shake as your favourite.
It's nice to see that they haven't tried to revert back to a blueprint unearthing of classics "Glory to the brave and Legacy of kings" after the dilute offering of "The infected". This is an acute distillation of everything that Hammerfall stands for, and has done previously. This is most certainly one of they're better albums here and it is great too:- to see cans on a solid vocal platform. This isn't quite a spectacular offering, but it is still a power metal CD that manages to steer clear of contrived songwriting - tedium in the main, and instead serves up a high quality blend of diverse euro tingled enjoyment.
Perhaps feeling the spirit was starting to go awry, Hammerfall attempt to capture their old sound on (r)Evolution. Eschewing the drop D tuning that seemed to feature heavily on Infected, instead opting for tuning similar to their earlier albums. They even contacted Fredrik Nordström, who produced their first two albums, to help with production again.
The result, however, isn't quite the classic that some people wish it was. (r)Evolution is a strong album, but it's not perfect, and the similarities to their early work is overplayed. Whilst the guitar tone is similar to what we heard on Glory to the Brave, the songs are mostly slower, more akin to the tempo found from Crimson Thunder onwards. Incidentally, Crimson Thunder is my favourite Hammerfall album, and one that proves they can write good mid tempo songs.
However, some the mid tempo songs here are a bit plodding. Maybe not to the same extent as Infected, but not much more exciting. The album starts and ends strongly, but sags in the middle. I don't want to do the album an injustice as there is much to enjoy here. When the songs are good, they're very good, and Joacim Cans's vocals are the best they've been for years, showing a range greater than some of their recent albums.
(r)Evolution isn't another Glory to the Brave or Legacy of Kings. It's not even a Crimson Thunder. It is however, a very solid album.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Best album in a long time. The Bonus track is worth it. Thumbs up!!Published 22 months ago by Mauricio Suarez Figueroa