Review: Lonewolf – The Heathen Dawn

Hailing from Grenoble, France, heavy/speed metallers Lonewolf have changed little of their sound since forming in 1992 or the full-length debut in 2000, and that continues here in this unbelievably enjoyable release. Their now eighth full-length offering, it was released on May 20th, 2016 by Massacre Records.

The album carries on their tried-and-true standard of unleashing the classic heavy metal sound being brought aboard here. Mainly swinging from the more rousing, energetic patterns that contain tight, swirling and hard-hitting riffing filled with speed-metal patterns, furious straightforward marching and blistering drum-work that winds through the majority of the album here with such stand-outs as Wolfsblut, Demon’s Fire, Until the End and Rise to Victory coming into play nicely; there’s a lot of great work throughout here. Also, there’s some rather fun times here with the slow-down periods using more majestic marches with mid-tempo patterns working through the simplistic paces as in When the Angels Fall, The Birth of a Nation and Song for the Fallen which make for a wholly engaging time. This here is oddly arranged in the running order, though, in that the first half is more the fiery charging efforts while the second half comes with the more mid-tempo efforts which seem like an odd pairing, which works rather against it by letting the high-energy efforts start up only for the big, majestic efforts to slow down the back-end. Still, there’s plenty to like about the album here.

While there’s nothing really wrong here with the music on this release, the slightly disproportionate set-up of the running order is only enough of a minor let-down but not enough of a truly detrimental problem that it’s still highly recommended to fans of the bands’ previous works, the style in general or fans of classic traditional metal. 9/10

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