I wouldn’t even have considered pickin’ this album up in the store with this cover art – a naked lady covered in blood with a torch in her hand – that’s just too corny and cliché-like! But try to abstract from the cover, and you’re in for a pounding and powerful injection of metal with numerous influences in styles (but not Judas Priest, although the album name hints something else…).
Swedish album debutants under the name of Freevil, consists of guitarist Tomas Andersson and bassist Roger Blomberg (former thrash-act Denata), drummer/singer Mique Flesh (former Witchery and Séance) and synth/FX-“player” Phanatos.
At times Freevil sound a bit like King Diamond in general mood, singing and keyboards, but the songwriting isn’t quite the standard of K.D.; this is a more straight ahead, full throttle modern version of the above mentioned styles (and more) mixed together. And that’s what impresses when you listen to Freevil: the power and speed of the music is breathtaking.
The vocals of Mique are mostly like a speedy, high pitched screaming version of Udo (Udo D. goes Melodic Death Metal…) with some additional growling in places (by Tomas). To begin with impressive in power and aggressiveness, but in the long run (at least for me) a bit tiresome and lacking diversity.
The keyboards (or synth as it’s called here) contributes well to the drive and the (B horror movie like) mood in the songs, well integrated in the general mood and sound of the album, although it gets a bit too dominant in the sound-scape at times.
The guitars on this album is almost purely rhythm/riff orientated, no time for long solos in this relentless attack on your senses, an although there’s nothing equilibristic in the playing, it’s done steady and powerful.
The sound and mixing is quite aggressive and in your face, done by Mique Flesh and mastered by Peter In de Betou (a.o. Dimmu Borgir and Dark Funeral).
This may sound like I’m not that thrilled with this album, but taken for what it is (no really new inventions – just a sheer power attack), it’s quite entertaining, and should be checked out by someone who can appreciate some of the above mentioned qualities.
Recommended tracks: Deathblow, Killing Spree and Morbid December