Winds Of War
9/26/2004 - Review by: Eric Compton
Iron Angel - Winds Of War 2004 Marquee Records reviewed by: EC
I won't bother going into the back history of Iron Angel. For those of you who are curious about the history of the band, or want to read a review of their debut record, just look up my review of that particular reissue in the Review section of Maximum Metal. I will however state that "Winds Of War" is a very different record than its predecessor, with Iron Angel shifting the metal gears into a more solid, hard rocking effort with their sophomore release.
Sure, the speed metal vibe is present on this album, just look at fast riding cuts like "Creatures Of Destruction" or "Metalstorm" to prove my point. But it is the slower, less technical stance that this record takes that really appeals to me. For the longest time I didn't like this album nearly as much as the first, but as the Scorpions and Accepts of the world have become increasingly more numb to me (I've wore out the discs), I find the hard rocking attitude of "Winds Of War" very refreshing.
Tracks like "Born To Rock" and "Stronger Than Steel" burn intensely with that Accept/U.D.O sonic riffage, which some may find commercial when compared to their first album, but by no means are these types of songs weak or radio friendly. The heaviest of the heavy will find this album filled with crunchy, fast rhythm numbers, with vocalist Dirk Schroder straying from out of control warrior to rock renegade persona seemingly overnight. The record is smooth, with the arrangements and song writing patterns easy to follow, keeping the album flowing fluidly from start to finish.
Along with the original "Winds Of War" recording, this reissue contains seven bonus live cuts, taken from the group's "Hellish Crossfire" tour. I highly recommend picking both of these reissues up.
Note - Hell Bent For Leather has announced they have an Iron Angel live album out with even more bonus cuts.
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