Avatar – Hail the Apocalypse – Gain Music – Out now
Avatar was formed by a couple of very young hounds back in the early 00’s and since 2003 they managed to keep a stable line-up for ten years, until the departure of guitarist Simon Andersson. During those years they have managed to grow a lot, with their definite highpoint, so far, being picked as a support band for Avenged Sevenfold. Recently they released their fifth album “Hail the Apocalypse”. Time to enter the circus of Avatar!
Johannes Michael Gustaf Eckerström – Vocals
John Alfredsson – Drums
Kungen – Guitars
Tim Öhrstrom – Guitars
Henrik Sandelin – Bass
Hail the Apocalypse
And what a circus it is! Throughout the album you get the feeling as if you’re in some sort of twisted circus show with a mix of grooving death ‘n roll tunes, with ringmaster Johannes leading you further into their world. At the entrance you get greeting by the sounds of lions purring heavily as reproduced by the guitarists in the opener “Hail the Apocalypse”, laying down a firm groove. This circus-like feel is continued in several of the songs and in a superbly awesome twin-guitar way in the catchy “What I Don’t Know”, which has a very bland chorus. The band also shows a more serious side in “Death of Sound”, but sort of bounce back with “Vultures Fly” which reminds me of an older Rob Zombie song.
Besides that, the album has quite an ‘American feel’ to it, especially in the song “Bloody Angel” and “Murderer”. While the songs are pretty damn good, I just feel the typical nu-metal angst ooze from it. Without getting on my nerves though.
“Puppet Show” is the most blandly circus song of the bunch and mostly feels like a song they just came up with the fill up the album, ripping off on Phantom of the Opera. Still pretty damn catchy though and probably a blast during live shows.
Nearing the end the band lets the engine simmer down with the rather drudging “Something in the Way”. Luckily it gets cut off by “Tower” which has a very melodic and melancholic feel to it. This is definitely the odd duck of the bunch and plays on the teen portion of the audience. Yet it totally works and it brings the hectic show to a peaceful end.
Despite being active for ten years the band still manages to sound young and energetic. The songs are catchy and fun and it really sounds as if the band had a lot of fun recording it.
It’s probably outside the comfort zone of older metal fans, but give it a few spins and you’ll get with the show!
- Hail The Apocalypse
- What I Don’t Know
- Death Of Sound
- Vultures Fly
- Bloody Angel
- Tsar Bomba
- Puppet Show
- Get In Line
- Something In the Way
Score: 4.1 out of 5
Text by Robert Popovic