Just two years after the release of their previous album Unholy Saviour, BATTLE BEAST are due to release their fourth studio album, Bringer of Pain. It is the first album that the Finnish power metal group have released through Nuclear Blast, who are renowned for power metal with the likes of SABATON and HAMMERFALL serving as just two examples.
The opening track of the new record is sublime; it sets the tone of what you can expect from the album and the band, and is a very strong way to start a new album. The track, Straight To The Heart, starts off with explosive riffs from the guitar of Juuso Soinio and Janne Björkroth working in perfect harmony to deliver an epic intro. Mix that in with the powerful vocals of Noora Louhimo, and straight away you’ve got yourself an excellent power metal track.
The second song and also the title track of the album, Bringer Of Pain, continues the theme straight from the opening track. The riffs are hard, fast and aggressive, coupled again with Noora’s strong vocals and the blast beats from Pyry Vikki on drums, and sums up exactly what power metal as a genre is all about in just one song.
The following track, King For A Day, takes a different twist to the opening duo on the album, as the band seem to take it down a notch. While the riffs are still relatively fast, they are much more simplistic and slower compared to those from the previous mentioned tracks. The vocals too are softer; Noora’s voice is still powerful, but the sound is more gentle in this particular track, which gives the song more of a hard rock feel rather than power metal. If you were to listen to this song without knowing who the singer or even the band is, there are a lot of similarities to JOAN JETT in Noora’s voice. While there are subtle differences between the songs across the whole album, the only other real stand out track from the remainder of the album is the final number, Far From Heaven. This is a completely different track to anything else that features on the album, but is a good way to round it off. This is the ‘ballad’ of the album, and is more common in power metal than you might think – one that springs to mind straight away is Twilight Princess by HAMMERFALL from their latest album.
As mentioned before about Noora’s vocals being softer in King For A Day, this is definitely evident in this final track. While we have been used to powerful screaming from her throughout most of the album, Far From Heaven shows just how good her singing voice is, and that Noora can adapt from hard hitting power metal anthems to something much slower.
We may be less than two months into 2017, but to date this is potentially one of the best albums that has been released this year. Granted, there is a lot of the year left and a lot more new music to come yet, but from what has already been released this year, Bringer Of Pain is right up there. Anyone who loves power metal, or even wants to test the waters with the genre, will love this record, especially fans of NIGHTWISH in particular, it truly is an exceptional album.
Bringer of Pain is set for release on February 17th via Nuclear Blast Records.
Like BATTLE BEAST on Facebook.