Primal Fear
Jaws of Death


2.0
poor

Review

by Venpts16 USER (27 Reviews)
June 1st, 2012 | 17 replies


Release Date: 1999 | Tracklist


The sophomore slump is a dangerous, and common, trend in music. Many bands have failed to make a follow-up that could match up with their debut, and usually suffer commercially and critically as a result. Many bands, such as Gamma Ray, created inferior follow-ups compared to their debuts, and really hurt their early career because of this. One large case of a sophomore slump is Jaws of Death by Primal Fear, an album that hardly compares to their other albums by a long shot.

Before I go into detail about the problems of the album, it does have a few positive points. The first song of the album, “Final Embrace,” is everything you could possibly need from Ralf Scheepers and the gang, with tight riffing, great soloing, and Mr. Scheepers dominating the microphone. The song defines Primal Fear’s career, and makes for an excellent introduction to what was a promising album. Songs like “Save a Prayer” and “Hatred in My Soul” follow and play off the band’s strengths of soloing and singing, and are necessary listens as well. Their style of Power Metal is at its strongest on these three songs, and newcomers to the band will likely be in joy just from the songs...

…Though, after those tracks, is where the problems start. Out of the eleven songs, only three are fairly enjoyable. Every other song plods on without emotion, doing little to hold the listener’s attention and just makes painfully boring listen after listen. The guitar playing becomes derivative of the band’s other material from both this album and their self-titled album, and even Scheepers’s singing is mediocre and unremarkable throughout the eight boring songs. All of the band members, especially the aforementioned Scheepers, feel like they are on auto-pilot, and lack the energy and motivation from their debut and later albums like Black Sun.

Excluding the individual performances, the songwriting might be the weakest aspect of the album. The songs lack the spark that make songs like “Final Embrace” and “Silver and Gold” so great, and is what unfortunately kills the album. The melodies feel forced, and it becomes impossible to enjoy them if it is song after song of repetitive and bland riffing and singing. Sure, some songs may be faster than others, but the perpetual elements in the eight bad songs are enough to stray anyone away from the actually good songs like “Hatred in My Soul.”

In their early years, there is no reason a band like Primal Fear should release such a boring album. Few points throughout the eleven songs catch the listener’s attention, and it just feels as though the band was on autopilot in both songwriting and performances. Though the band thankfully bounced back with one of their best albums, Nuclear Fire, this is one flaw that should not be forgotten in the long career of Ralf Scheepers.



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user ratings (33)
Chart.
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
FictionalFlames
June 1st 2012


1516 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

great review man.

Venpts16
June 1st 2012


283 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

Thanks! I wanted to review something new while giving a negative review for the first time in a while.
I'm glad you liked it, even if you seem to have a bit of a more favorable opinion to this album than
myself.

FictionalFlames
June 1st 2012


1516 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I haven't listened to it since Jan. or Feb. from this year (that's when I first started listening to this band); I still don't remember a damn thing off of it.

Venpts16
June 1st 2012


283 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

Oh, nevermind then! The album wasn't too bad on my first listen, though the second was when I discovered that it was really boring.

FictionalFlames
June 1st 2012


1516 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

generally it seems like most of their songs sound the same; a shit ton of fillers in the majority of their discography.

I might check it out later though and give it another chance.

Venpts16
June 1st 2012


283 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

True; I think their most unique (and best) albums are easily Unbreakable and Seven Seals because of the variety of songs on them. However, that is true for a bit of their albums (the end of the self-titled album, this album, a little bit of Nuclear Fire, maybe some others).

FictionalFlames
June 1st 2012


1516 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Unbreakable is easily one of their best albums. I'm curious if they'll release any new material next year, judging based on their history of releasing material.

Venpts16
June 1st 2012


283 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

I hope so, but I'm not sure. It has been three years between this and 16.6 (which was one of their weaker albums btw), and I fear that the material might be rushed. That said, I wouldn't mind hearing some more Primal Fear in a year or so.

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
June 1st 2012


6105 Comments


Funny, I remember reading reviews about this back in the day, saying that this is enjoyable at least and a step forward from the debut.

Digging: The Sabbathian - Ritual Rites

FictionalFlames
June 1st 2012


1516 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

It's been like 3 years between the release of 16.6 and Unbreakable, but during those years Ralf Scheepers released his solo album, and I heard it sounded just like another Primal Fear album.

Venpts16
June 1st 2012


283 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

Really? I was unaware about Scheepers's solo album; that just got me really optimistic for Primal Fear sooner than I thought!

FictionalFlames
June 1st 2012


1516 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

http://www.sputnikmusic.com/bands/Scheepers/25659/

Venpts16
June 1st 2012


283 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

That's pretty awesome, and that was released a year ago...I'd say that your estimation is a good one. I wouldn't mind having another Primal Fear album next year!

Venpts16
June 1st 2012


283 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

As for your comment Voivod, I would like to add that I am a little confused by that. I'm not really sure why some would consider this an improvement over the s/t album (outside of songs like Final Embrace), though I will say that I may just be a tad unusual with some opinions of albums (negative of The Time of the Oath, positive of Land of the Free II, etc.).

RunOfTheMill
June 2nd 2012


1465 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

STILL. NEED. TO. CHECK-MORE-OF-THEIR-STUFF-OUT.

One of the things that is kinda bothering me about Primal Fear is that their sound doesn't evolve much... It's still good, but not as interesting as I'd hoped (correct me if I'm wrong). I'll stay away from this one, though. Another great review!

RunOfTheMill
June 2nd 2012


1465 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

You should review Nuclear Fire next if you're up to it!

Venpts16
June 3rd 2012


283 Comments

Album Rating: 2.0 | Sound Off

That is a great idea! I may do that, and the band's debut, as upcoming reviews...though I do want to review some of the Rage and Persuader albums that are review-less as well. I'll see what I can do over the next few days!



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