F U L L . R E V I E W S



Unleashed
Hammer Battalion

Company: Steamhammer
Release: 2008
Reviewer: Raising Iron
Genre: Death
Rating
4



  • Straight from the scabbard death metal in all it's original glory



  • If one is a fan of classic Swedish Death Metal, then 2008 is an aural smorgasbord! We have a new Dismember (sure to make my top 10 list for this year), a new Grave, and here we have the new Unleashed. Tried and true, this long-running and highly stable act have "unleashed" (I know, cheap pun) their 9th studio album, Hammer Battalion, upon the masses.

    Now, for those in the know, the first question that one wants answered is, "have they made a severe shift in style or approach?" You see, Unleashed have been churning out their take on death metal virtually unchanged since their bass player and vocalist, Johnny Hedlund, left the much-lauded Nihilist back around 1989 or so and formed this formidable franchise. Well, Hammer Battalion will answer the posed inquest with a clarion "NO". That's right, if you know Unleashed, then you are pretty much keyed in on what to expect with this release.

    The next question needing answered is whether this is a bad thing or not. This is where things are going to get quite subjective. I, for one, am not complaining. Although I usually want to hear my favorite bands expanding, experimenting, and otherwise rewriting and changing their approach every couple of releases or so, it can be comforting to have those few acts out there that if you like 'em, you know what you're going to get, and it brings a bit of comfort in a world filled with sub-sub-sub genres. It's like putting on that broken-in old pair of larrigans. This is where Unleashed reside, and that's just fine.

    Now to the crux of the matter, when the riffs are this damn headbangable, the production this top-notch, and the assailment this whole-hearted, who cares if it's not exactly changing the Death Metal landscape. Unleashed have left that up to others, content to swirl in their ever-spinning maelstrom of fury. Hammer Battalion is undiluted, crushing, and straight from the scabbard death metal in all it's original glory. So, pour yourself some mead and lift your mugs high for yet another round of raging ire from one of the more legendary acts to rise out of the North. "Hammer Battalion, Unleashed!"



    Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details
    5 Excellent - Buy it and say a prayer to the metal gods that you were tuned on to this masterpiece. A classic.
    4-4.5 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a clunker or a lacking somewhere to keep it from perfection. You won't feel bad about dropping some bones on these.
    3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler. This is the OK range where you'd search for the record on sale or used.
    3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio. Could show skills but be dull overall. Redeeming qualities for indy bands are effort and passion. Majors that don't try or suck outright end up here.
    2-2.5 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors. There is much better metal out there.
    1-1.5 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
    0 Terrible or an otherwise waste of your life and time.

    Note: Reviews are graded from 0-5, anything higher or not showing is from our old style. Scores, however, do not reveal the important features. The written review that accompanies the ratings is the best source of information regarding the music on our site. Reviewing is opinionated, not a qualitative science, so scores are personal to the reviewer and could reflect anything from being technically brilliant to gloriously cheesy fun.

    Demos and independent releases get some slack since the bands are often spent broke supporting themselves and trying to improve. Major releases usually have big financial backing, so they may be judged by a heavier hand. All scores can be eventually adjusted up or down by comparison of subsequent releases by the same band. We attempt to keep biases out of reviews and be advocates of the consumer without the undo influence of any band, label, management, promoter, etc.

    The best way to determine how much you may like certain music is to listen to it yourself.



    ALL FULL REVIEWS FOR: UNLEASHED
    CD
    TITLE BAND
    DOR
    REVIEWER DATE
    Dawn of the NineUnleashed
    2015
    Greg Watson4/21/2015
    Hammer BattalionUnleashed
    2008
    Raising Iron7/25/2008
    MidvinterblotUnleashed
    2006
    David Loveless3/14/2008
    OdalheimUnleashed
    2012
    Greg Watson3/28/2012
    Sworn AllegianceUnleashed
    2004
    Eric Compton8/30/2004


    ALL SUMMARY REVIEWS FOR: UNLEASHED

    No Summary reviews currently exist for them.


    ALL INTERVIEWS FOR: UNLEASHED
    INTERVIEW BAND INTERVIEWER DATE
    Johnny HedlundUnleashedEric Compton10/8/2004


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