Manowar
Gods of War


3.0
good

Review

by Tyler Munro EMERITUS
February 23rd, 2007 | 62 replies


Release Date: 2007 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Manowar does the unthinkable and releases an album that's actually lacking metal. Gods of War is marred by endless overtures and interludes, but the bonus track saves the day.

Germans.

Germans are sort of an interesting breed when it comes to music. I can say this safely based on a few things, but there's one that stands out in my mind.

David Hasselhoff.

David Hasselhoff is not a talented singer. In fact, he's not a talented actor either. The often drunk, often ridiculous 'Hoff can barely carry a tune, yet, somehow, the Germans eat it up. Night Rocker, his debut album, not only showed us that he was definitely maybe only partially joking, but it got his name out there in the music world. But Night Rocker didn't garner him the fame I'm talking about, no; it was the release of Looking for Freedom that skyrocketed him to superstardom. And this is where it gets ridiculous...

The album went triple platinum, and the Hoff was eventually named top selling artist in Germany for the year (1989).

Basically I'm trying to say the Germans are a little odd. There's something else they're fascinated with though, something I actually agree with. The Germans, they love their Manowar. And really, who could blame them?

Manowar is a group that has based their entire career on three things: Metal, Manliness and Sex. They're misogynistic, muscular, hairy, mighty, loud, and they love to ride motorcycles. They're advocates of True Metal, and defenders of all that is real in the Metal world. Though puzzling to some, as it's never quite clear how serious the band really is, Manowar is a group that you can appreciate for more than their ridiculous image. Basically, the music kicks ass too.

But the band is getting older, and I'm led to believe that with age comes maturity. So, with each member getting up there age-wise, maybe this is Manowar's time to really take themselves seriously. Enter Gods of War...

Gods of War pains me deeply. Released in Germany months before it'll see the streets of North America, Gods of War is the first entry to a supposed series of concept albums based on mythological gods. This is Manowar giving it up to Odin, and it's probably twice as epic as you're expecting. But would you believe that's its biggest fault? Ah yes, chock another one up to the 'too-epic-for-its-own-good' league of albums, and while you're at it, tell Rhapsody of Fire to change their name back.

If you hadn't guessed, Gods of War suffers from the same blunders as the latest offering from Italy's finest "Symphonic Hollywood Metal" band, who believe it or not is actually managed by Manowar bassist Joey DeMaio. When I listen to Rhapsody [Of Fire], I expect a lot of drawn out overtures and tacky monologues, in fact, that's the sole reason I started listening to them. But this is fucking Manowar, and with Manowar I expect the Metal. I expect TRUE Metal, and I expect it in ridiculously large, loud quantities. That's where this album disappoints.

Gods of War is a pretty long album, falling two minutes short of an hour and fifteen, and it's honestly too epic for it's own good. It starts off good enough; when I first turned this on I was ridiculously excited."Overture to the Hymn of the Immortal Warriors" is just what it sounds like, opening the album with what sounds like a full symphony and a giant choir to back them up. Strings and organs set the mood with harmonic choir vocals keeping the pace, but what really irks me is that pace is kept throughout most of the album. The fact is that there really isn't much Metal on Gods of War. The intro is 6:20 in length, and when it's over you expect to hear the protectors of True Metal ride in on their Harley's or something, but no, instead you get another overture. This time it's "The Ascension". Sure it has his purpose from the point of concept, but it honestly does a great job at killing the mood pretty early on. "King of Kings" eventually starts and finally kicks off the Metal, but I mean, this was off the EP (much like "The Ascension") and though it was live on Sons of Odin, it's still basically the same track. But regardless, at least we're finally done with the overtures and interludes and monologues...right?

WRONG.

"Army of the Dead Part One" is yet another pointless interlude, but at least it's relatively brief. Finally it's "Sleipnir", our first new Metal Manowar track since the EP was released months ago. It's typical Manowar, and that's why I love it. Sure, they're still singing about Odin and Valhalla (which is apparently only reachable by crossing a rainbow bridge...wtf?), but the music is traditional True Metal. Mid-paced Metal with powerful vocals, thunderous drums and epic vocal prowess, all of which are subtly accompanied by a quiet choir of sorts. It seems we're definitely off to the running, and this is where the album's at its strongest. "Loki God of Fire" is the band's attempt at an A&E style Bio with a Metal twist, and it's yet another Manowar classic. "Blood Brothers" is yet another gem, mischievously starting off like another boring overture only to have Eric Adams enter, accompanied only by synths. This is deep stuff, man. This is the more "inspirational" side of Manowar, one we're rarely exposed to. As a drum-roll enters, some light guitars join in on the fun and Eric Adams lets us know he's here for us, a true friend with no price. It's great. It's hilarious. It's sort of Metal, but it's definitely still Manowar. This is what this album should consist of exclusively; a blend of mid-paced Metal with the occasional Power Ballad thrown in to fill the cheese/laugh quota.

But don't worry, the album quickly returns to the theme of boring and dreary symphonic overtures. 7 minutes pass -that's two more tracks for the record- and then another track off the EP kicks in. "Sons of Odin" is one of the stronger tracks on the album, calling back classic Manowar songs with its powerful and driving bassline and building structure.

Honestly, I could write for pages upon pages about this album and it'd still only be half as epic as this album sets out to be. If you include the AMAZING bonus track (more on that in a minute), this album is one hour and thirteen minutes long. Now, if you do the math, there's about half an hour worth of overtures and interludes on the album. There's 8 Metal tracks on the album, which equals half of the tracklist, and three (four if you count Odin, which was on the EP in string form) of those were off the EP. What you're left with is around 5 new Manowar tracks worth listening to, one of which is a bonus. Honestly, as a self-proclaimed protector of True Metal, I can't help but feel a little cheated. If it weren't for the Bonus Track, I'd feel more than cheated. But...luckily there's that damned bonus track. I mean, there's some really awesome stuff on here, but for the most it's something I've literally heard before, but the bonus track, well...

Playing off Led Zeppelin's "Kashmir" better than Puff Daddy ever could, "Die For Metal" is the Metal anthem for the 21st Century. This is the Manowar we've come to know and love. The lyrics, which sort of fall in line with every Manowar quote we've ever heard, are all about Metal's effect on the group, as well as their unbridled devotion to the genre. It's anthemic and powerful, 5 minutes of true glory if I've ever heard it. Seemingly live (though not really confirmed), "Die for Metal" has some of the most powerful drumming we've heard from the band in years and has Eric Adams belt out one of his most passionate vocal performances in recent memory. So while Gods of War is ultimately disappointing, there's a glimmer of hope at the end of the proverbial tunnel. I leave you with the lyrics to "Die for Metal".

THEY CAN'T STOP US LET 'EM TRY
FOR HEAVY METAL...WE WOULD DIE!

Quit my job this mornin', said forever I would hold my head up high.
Cause I need Metal in my life, just like an eagle needs to fly.
So I walk outside into the street, from the hall I heard thunder and screams (YEAH!)

I walked inside so I could hear, and the guy beside me gave me a beer
He had his fist up in the air, and called me brother, said "My friends are over there".
They called themselves Immortals, they're the truest of the true
And in that very moment I was born again like you!

THEY SAID HOLD YOUR HEAD UP HIGH
RAISE YOUR FIST UP IN THE AIR
PLAY METAL LOUDER THAN HELL (LOUDER THAN HELL)

THEY CAN'T STOP US, LET 'EM TRY
FOR HEAVY METAL WE WOULD DIE!

Brothers stand beside me, there's a battle on
Know my words are true
There's a battle for True Metal, they're marching
They're marching on, me and you

Ten thousand strong are here tonight, with twenty-thousand fists on in the air
YEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH
The power of True Metal's calling you...
It's everywhere.


Stay true, Metal Elite.



Recent reviews by this author
Masked Intruder Masked IntruderAtheist Jupiter
Aeon Path of FireAdam Haworth Stephens We Live on Cliffs
Autopsy The Tomb WithinOrbs Asleep Next to Science
user ratings (135)
Chart.
2.8
good

Comments:Add a Comment 
Tyler
Emeritus
February 24th 2007


7926 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

This is one of those reviews I just typed really fast and didn't really alter much when I proof read it. I wrote this about two hours ago, proof-read it about 10 minuets ago, and posted it now.

If it wasn't for "Die for Metal", this'd probably be a 2.5. This album makes me sad.

Mikesn
Emeritus
February 24th 2007


3709 Comments


I haven't heard much Manowar. I feel dirty and unmetal.

If you hadn't guessed, Gods of War suffers from the same blunders as the latest offering from Italy's finest "Symphonic Hollywood Metal" band
The intro is 6:20 in length, and when it's over you expect to hear the protectors of True Metal ride in on their Harley's or something, but no, instead you get another overture.
But don't worry, the album quickly returns to the theme of boring and dreary symphonic overtures. 7 minutes pass -that's two more tracks for the record-
Ugh, not to sound closed minded or anything, but I'm not interested in hearing this. I think I'll look up Battle Hymns or something

Digging: Grimes - Visions

Tyler
Emeritus
February 24th 2007


7926 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Get Battle Hymns definitely. Look for the bonus track off this album, check out Kings of Metal as well.

samthebassman
February 24th 2007


2164 Comments


I dont like your intro in this review.

Damrod
Moderator
February 24th 2007


1093 Comments


Dude, not all Germans like the 'Hoff, and not all GErmans like Man-O-War. I must know, I am one... ;)

TheMisterBungle
February 24th 2007


861 Comments


I saw a Manowar review on the front page and said "I wonder who did a Manowar review..."



Oddsen
February 24th 2007


1127 Comments


great review. you managed to keep me interested through the whole thing

MrKite
February 24th 2007


5020 Comments


The intro was awesome.

Tyler
Emeritus
February 24th 2007


7926 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Damrod don't worry, I know it's a stereotype, but without stereotypes this review would only work half as well.

Thor
February 24th 2007


10200 Comments


Pretty good review, but it's too damn long.

Tyler
Emeritus
February 24th 2007


7926 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

It's really not that long if you cut out the lyrics at the end. If it bothers you that much, skip the intro about Germans.

temporary
February 24th 2007


207 Comments


I thought this review was really good, captured all the sillyness and stupidity of Manowar perfectly.

chelseaface
February 24th 2007


1 Comments


Manowar is unfailingly epic. As such, reviews of Manowar albums should follow suit. Too bad the bonus track (all I have currently heard) sucks balls.

Bfhurricane
March 2nd 2007


6197 Comments


This is a decent review... convinced me not to check this out

Pluh
March 7th 2007


579 Comments


Very good review, you kept my attention throughout... though i'm not a huge fan of Manowar, i do wanna hear that last bonus track... it looks like it would be pretty good.

Castamir
March 11th 2007


9 Comments


You know what saddens me deeply? It's people like you Tyler.

You probably listened to the album about 3 times only before making your stupid review.

You completely missed the point of the album, which is a true musical masterpiece.

Nobody in his right mind would say that hearing the first notes of "The Ascension" kills the mood of anything, in fact it's the opposite, it's sets the mood wonderfully. Then you talk about "Army of the Dead" as "yet another pointless interlude" when in fact it is the back-bone of the album.

The leitmotiv comes up twice in it's simple form, and then culminates in the ending of a most magnificent song called "Odin".

I think you will be one of many who will listen to this album many years from now and regret ever saying childish things about it.

Abaddon2005
March 11th 2007


684 Comments


^ I hope that's a joke account or something

Castamir
March 11th 2007


9 Comments


I don't know, does everybody have to agree with each other, in here?This Message Edited On 03.11.07

Abaddon2005
March 11th 2007


684 Comments


You didn't just "disagree", you pissed on his review because you have a different opinion. Just because your opinion differs from his doesn't mean this was a weak review.

Castamir
March 11th 2007


9 Comments


I think it was a pretty weak review.

It always refers back to the EP which was only 9 bucks. Once the album comes out you just forget about the EP and talk about the real album. The EP is just like a thriller for a movie. Would you go "hey, that was on the thriller, nothing new here".

Come on. A review that makes people want to ignore some piece of art out there is just a bad review with a negative attitude.

I want Tyler to tell us sincerely how many times he listened to the album before writting his review.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2014 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy