by: TJ FOWLER
Available: August 15th, 2014
Label: Nuclear Blast Records
I have always liked to equate the heavy metal genre to the Star Wars Universe in the sense that I thought the metal bands being like Jedi, MTV as the Emperor, Metallica as Darth Vader, Iron Maiden as Obi Wan and Nirvana as the clone troopers executing Order 66 in the 90’s when we had the great Jedi Grunge Purge. During this purge many Jedi (metal bands) were killed and replaced by an oppressive regime (grunge music). Also, many bands did survive and went into hiding only to remerge once the Emperor (MTV) was overthrown. One of these bands I like to think of as one of the great Jedi that survived is Accept.
Back in 2010 Accept re-emerged and delivered to us ‘Blood of Nations’ which showed everyone that the Force was still strong with Accept and I consider it one of the best comeback albums of all time in the metal world if not in music. It was fresh while still encompassing everything that made Accept, Accept. The guitars were cutting and clear and new singer Mark Tornillo’s vocals were spot on and fit the songs perfectly. Accept was back and ready to deliver a Heavy Metal Force attack to anyone who stood in their way.
Now we are in 2014 and Accept has a new album, ‘Blind Rage’ set to release upon the world. Several weeks ago the band released the single ‘Stampede’ and it showed Accept still has the chops to make vintage Accept songs while again sounding relevant and not a 80’s throwback. ‘Stampede’ is also the opening track to the album and starts off very similar to ‘Metal Heart’ before it launches into its catchy sonic assault. The song is a good track for any fan of Accept looking to get back into the band as this will be the song that will make someone go out and purchase the album.
Next up is ‘Dying Breed’ which is an anthem to all the older bands/fans that grew up in the time period where metal had the attitude, look and captured the golden age of what made metal great. It is a really good anthem song that references Saxon, Rainbow, Jimi Hendrix and Judas Priest. The song again has a driving guitar attack and lyrically is pretty rocking as well for the nostalgic metal fan.
Other notable tracks I found on the album that I thought were good were ‘Wanna Be Free’ which is actually a social commentary on the state of the world today and how one man profits at the expense of someone else. And ‘From the Ashes We Rise’, which is another tune about how Accept is not going to lay down and just die which seems to be a underlying theme on this album in some songs.
The thing I noticed on ‘Blind Rage’ is that the album tends to have a lot of mid-tempo songs mixed in with several songs starting out with a very slow clean guitar sound before kicking in. I found this an interesting direction for Accept to take as it offers variety on the album in between the more faster paced songs. It also shows that Accept doesn’t have to be a ‘speed’ band that seems to be something a lot of bands feel they have to be, 100% of the time. Also, the production quality is fantastic here. You have the distinct Accept sounding guitars which are in the front and do not get pushed to the back of the sound while also Tornillo’s vocals are clear and distinct and not lost in the mix. You even have those great ‘Accept Chants’ in several of the songs which is a nice touch as well.
‘Blind Rage’ is another great offering from the Modern Age Accept that shows that great bands don’t have to become irrelevant as they grow older. Accept knows what heavy metal is about, where it comes from and make no excuses in how they deliver it, with guitars in your face and screeching vocals from the pits of hell. ‘Blind Rage’ is another triumph that should sit proudly in any metal collection. The heavy metal Teutonic Jedi are back and may the Force be with you!
Wolf Hoffman – Guitar
Peter Baltes – Bass
Mark Tornillo – Vocals
Herman Frank – Guitar
Stefan Schwarzmann – Drums