Manowar
The Triumph of Steel


4.5
superb

Review

by lostforwords USER (36 Reviews)
June 19th, 2012 | 19 replies | 3,820 views


Release Date: 1992 | Tracklist


7 of 7 thought this review was well written

Kings of Metal proved to be a big hit with the fans. While its success was commercial rather than artistic, it included some of Manowar’s classics, such as Heart of Steel, Hail and Kill and The Crown and The Ring. More than anything, it restored Manowar’s position in the hearts of the legendary Army of Immortals and repaired some of the damage Fighting the World had caused. In the end, it cost Manowar two members; founding member Ross the Boss and drummer Scott Colombus. It took them four years to find replacements and release a record that could be aptly described as a mighty return to form.

First of all, Triumph of Steel was not a “safe” record. With the exception of the aforementioned three songs, which are standard epic metal, Kings of Metal had found them performing a brand of classy yet not classic heavy/power metal. In Triumph of Steel, Manowar made their intentions clear from the very first track; 28 minute-opener Achilles, Agony and Ecstasy has Homer’s Iliad as the central theme, and serves as a declaration of their return to the epic sound that made them famous. In terms of technical ability, Manowar was never as lethal as in Triumph of Steel. Rhino (who replaced Colombus) is a masterful drummer and Joey DeMaio honored him by letting him play his own solo in Achilles, Agony and Ecstacy. David Shankle, who replaced Ross the Boss, is a shredder (latter, he abandoned Manowar to focus on his guitar studies). Next to them is Joey DeMaio, whose abilities were well known by then, and of course Eric Adams. The respected vocalist chooses to sing in a lower register, sounding confident and strong, while he retains his capacity to master the higher notes whenever it is needed.

Triumph of Steel could be seen as Manowar’s fifth masterpiece (the four first records being the four first masterpieces). It is also by far their darkest and most aggressive record; Ride the Dragon is a power metal song in the borders of thrash with exhausting rhythms and ferocious vocals. The exact same could be said for Death Hector’s Reward, or the last minute of The Demon’s Whip. On the other hand, Burning is viciously dark, with a remarkable absence of structure; no choruses, only Adams whispering and screaming (towards the end), the band entering here and there to play a ritualistic mid tempo riff. Demon’s Whip includes an impressive, Sabbath influenced, very mean riff and a menacing chorus-the last minute, as said before is a pure thrash holocaust. Spirit Horse of the Cherokee is a tribute to the Indians; Manowar imitate Indian rhythms and dress them up with a heroic chorus, resulting in a very distinct track. As usual, there is also a piece which praises the virtues of the Heavy Metal nation. Metal Warriors lightens the overall dark mood and serves as the traditional-metal break in an epic metal record.

The pinnacle of the album is the duet Master of the Wind and Power of thy Sword. The first one is Triumph of Steel’s most special moment, a touching, acoustic ballad with some of the band’s most optimistic lyrics: “and for any day that stinks, two better days it brings, nothing is as bad as it seems”. The latter is the best epic metal song they wrote since 1984 (and until 2002’s Call to Arms), with its fast riffs, glorious chorus and silent atmospheric middle section. With the exception of the opening track, which disrupts the excellence of the record by being overambitious, too long and ultimately weary (it is their most complex song, but there are moments that don’t really fit in such as the bass solo or the drum solo, which ruin the incredible opening riffs), the rest of their record is flawless.

The Triumph of Steel is the closest Manowar got to re-approaching their golden age (1981-1984), but it remains criminally overlooked up to this day. It is true, Triumph of Steel is not an epic tale of glory (like Into Glory Ride was), but an epic tale of hatred and vengeance, which explains its obscure tone and aggressive aesthetics. That is in fact its uniqueness. As a result, it didn’t produce the number of hits Kings of Metal (or the first four albums) produced, nor it ever became a fan favorite, despite the fact that it is one of Manowar’s most varied and consistent works and that its overall quality is of very high standards.



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user ratings (140)
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Comments:Add a Comment 
TheNotrap
June 18th 2012



8029 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Their last great album in my opinion.
Have a pos.

Digging: Savage Grace - Master Of Disguise

MO
June 18th 2012



18442 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Def one of their better albums. The whole 24 minute achilles agony and ecstasy is so good

Also power of thy sword slays

Digging: Immolation - Dawn of Possession

jopower
June 18th 2012



103 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Gods of war feel the power of my sword

The albums after The Triumph of Steel definitely aren't Manowar's best.


BallsToTheWall
June 18th 2012



44164 Comments


Skeet skeet

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
June 18th 2012



5985 Comments


Excellent review, pos.

I always wondered about the quality of this record and you made it perfectly clear with your review.

Digging: Lisa Gerrard - Twilight Kingdom

lostforwords
June 19th 2012



445 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

@ Notrap: To tell you the truth, Kings of Metal, which is considered great, is a 4 to me. Warriors Of The World is also a 4 to me, so I think that Manowar have 1 more great album after The Triumph. I also LOVE Louder than Hell, which of course is objectively a lesser album.

@MetallicOpeth: The first 5 minutes are stunning, then Achilles gets a little weary to me, especially the solos.

@Voivod: Man, don't you ever sleep???? Thanks for the good words. This record is kind of a hidden treasure if you ask me, not the easiest Manowar album. If you are to check it via Youtube go for Spirit Horse, Power of Thy Sword and Master of the Wind first, then dive into the rest

rockandmetaljunkie
June 19th 2012



3302 Comments


Great job on writing this review man, pos'd
I have only checked the first track from this one and it rules.

I want to buy this album but only if i can find it in a reasonable price.

YUJOS
June 19th 2012



916 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

^ I can give you the album in cassette if you like my friend!! Go buy instead the t-shirt which has the cover!!!! It's awesome!!!! m/ m/ m/

Poet
June 19th 2012



5921 Comments


MANOWAR m/

rockandmetaljunkie
June 19th 2012



3302 Comments


A cassette Yujos ? hahaha
That sounds romantic lol

YUJOS
June 19th 2012



916 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I am a romantic kafros my friend!!!

rockandmetaljunkie
June 19th 2012



3302 Comments


hahaha

TheNotrap
June 19th 2012



8029 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Nothing beats a good old metal cassette m/

YUJOS
June 20th 2012



916 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

^ Hell yeah!!!!! m/ m/ m/

InbredJed
August 12th 2012



5786 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

You actually REVIEWED this?@! YES!!!!

ffs
August 12th 2012



4857 Comments


mods, please delete all bands other than manowar from the database. thanks

manosg
January 17th 2013



5877 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great review. Nevertheless, I really like Fighting the World. Hell, I like all their albums.

Digging: Anacrusis - Manic Impressions

YUJOS
January 18th 2013



916 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Somebody is blowing his speakers with Manowaaaaaaaaaaaaaar!

manosg
January 18th 2013



5877 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Other bands play, Manowar kill.



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