This is the ninth album of the German true heavy metal band in their 20 year existence. I always had a love/hate relationship with this band. The music on most of the albums is above average true German heavy metal with lots of thrash parts, which suits me very well. The bit heavier albums like ‘Slaughter Prophecy’ and ‘Iron Blessings’ are my 2 favorites. The only part I think I will never get used to is the typical nasal singing style of Gerrit P. Mutz. You just can dig his style and voice or you can’t I guess.
The new songs are packed full of melodies and twin guitar parts in Maiden style can be heard in several songs. “Children of the Sky” even sounds like a Iron Maiden song. With “The Sign of the Skull” the band created its own true heavy metal hymn in Manowar style. Many times the tempo is rather high, like the in speed metal tempo track “Hail the Godz Of War”, but there are also a lot of less interesting mid-tempo pieces. Because of the less thrash parts on the album, I personally don’t find this one of their best releases. A lot of songs have melodic NWOBHM influences combined with U.S.metal and a teutonic (German) sauce, only “The Dead Walk the Earth” leans more towards thrash.
The band also wrote a few longer more epic tracks like “Let There Be Steel” and the threatening track “Beyond The Gates Of Nineveh”. The first is fast for the bigger part, but slows down several times during the refrains. The other one is rather different from the usual song style of Sacred Steel. A song with a good build up and a variety in tempo and style, but somehow it doesn’t grab me by the balls. The last short track is more a kind of joke or at least an attempt to be funny, it adds nothing to the album in my opinion.
Personally I miss the heavier (read: thrash) songs, but I’m sure the German fan will love this record. For me the music is a little bit too cliche and less strong and with words in their titles like Glory, Heavy Metal, Steel, Children, Godz, War, etc. etc. there isn’t a lot of originality either. Below you can hear to one of the faster songs on the album.
01. (Intro) Glory Ride (1:05)
02. Heavy Metal Sacrifice (4:29)
03. The Sign Of The Skull (6:10)
04. Hail The Godz Of War (3:24)
05. Vulture Priest (5:18)
06. Children Of The Sky (4:07)
07. Let There Be Steel (7:30)
08. Chaos Unleashed (4:09)
09. The Dead Walk The Earth (3:31)
10. Beyond The Gates Of Nineveh (6:45)
11. Iron Donkey (0:41)
Playing time: 47:00
Release date: 14 September 2016
Label: Cruz Del Sur Music