Dutch cult band Martyr known for their classic ‘For the Universe’ and their most famous track “Speed Of Samurai” releases their fourth album end of this month. The band already started when half of our readers perhaps weren’t born yet, or running around in diapers (1982!). If you are interested in their career, I advice you to look further on the internet. Their last feat of arms hails from 2011, in which they released ‘Circle of 8’. A fine album that showed there was still room for them in the metal scene. In my opinion they topped that album with ‘Your Are Next’. Somehow everything is just a little better. The songwriting, the production, the mix, the variety, the vocals, everything improved. Besides singer Rop van Haren, there are also some guest vocals of Andreas Lipinski (Wolfen), Gert Nijboer (Highway Chile), Nick Holleman (Vicious Rumors), Marloes (Izegrim) and JayCee Cuypers (Praying Mantis).
The opening track immediately shows the class of the band. On high speed with great galopping riffs and the excellent singing of Rop van Haren you are thrown back in you chair. The mix of thrashy riffs, NWOBHM (read: Iron Maiden) bass lines, a lot of melody and vocal Nevermore influences is a feast for your ears. “Infinity” shows that NWOBHM has influenced them a lot, twin guitars, pumping bass and some singing lines remind me of early Maiden. In general the riffs and solos on the entire album are of a high quality and with a lot of melody.
“Inch By Inch” is a mid-tempo track and not really one of my favorite songs. Fortunately “Souls Breathe” compensates a lot, a very fast track with grunts and growls of Marloes. “Unborn Evil” is a more threatening creapy sounding slower song that adds some balance to the most of the time fast tracks. “Monsters” is pure power metal with some rather heavy riffing. When a song is called “Crawl”, I expect it to start slow and a bit weird and exactly that happens. “Mother’s Tear” contains besides the Maiden influences also U.S. metal parts reminding me of Vicious Rumors. The most chaotic song “In the End” follows, especially the different singing lines and styles on top of the riffs takes a few spins to get used to. In general covers are less good as the original, but “Dont’ Need Your Money” is one that breaks the rule, a very good version.
With this album Martyr serves us an original mix of speed, thrash, NWOBHM, power metal and U.S. metal in a way only Martyr can! Thumbs up!
01. Into the Darkest Of All Realms
03. Inch By Inch
04. Souls Breathe
05. Unborn Evil
08. Mother’s Tear
09. In the End
10. Don’t Need Your Money
Playing time: 44:36
Release date: 31 March 2016
Label: Pure Steel Publishing/Into the Limelight Records