Tuesday, January 21, 2014

SWITCHBLADE - "Heavy Weapons"


LABEL: Killer Metal Records

Review By: Alan Holloway

Close your eyes and let your mind wander back to the glory days of NWOBHM, and you'll be in synch with Israel's Switchblade, from their logo and debut album cover to their no frills, riff heavy, metal for muthas.

Iron Maiden comparisons are unavoidable here, especially when Lior Stein starts to wail His air raid siren vocals are not as good as Bruce Dickinson's, but to be fair to him he does have a strong set of pipes that play in a similar fashion. The music is fast and furious for the most part, taking inspiration from the likes of Maiden and Priest as well as Accept, the chugga-chugga of guitars building up to fist-in-the-air choruses and the obligatory guitar solo. There's nothing wrong with any of the musicianship here, and Switchblade do exactly what they have obviously set out to do - make a heavy metal album.

There's been a lot of positive press around the band, mainly because old fart reviewers (like myself) appreciate the no frills NWOBHM approach that Switchblade do so well. If looked at critically, however, if "Heavy Weapons" had been released in the early 80s it would not be ranked up there with the greats. This is second division NWOBHM, although a fine piece of it. There's plenty of energy and some good songs, but ultimately Switchblade are a pale imitation of those they worship.

Band Facebook: Switchblade

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