Review Summary: It's a heavy metal feast.
Wolf is a heavy metal band from Sweden, formed in 1995 and having released 6 studio albums so far. If you are familiar with Wolf’s sound then you know exactly what to expect. They’re not trying to reinvent the wheel, they’re not afraid or embarrassed to play an old brand of metal and I am very happy for that. Powerful vocals, epic guitar riffs, screaming guitar solos and sing-along choruses… and the sometimes ridiculous lyrics (‘When you put on a hex to get rid of your ex’ – “Voodoo”)
Ravenous boasts a beautiful sound courtesy of Roy Z (Halford, Dickinson, Malmsteen, Helloween). Most of the line-up of the band has changed prior to this recording but it would not affect the band's "classic" sound, so long as founding vocalist, guitarist, and de facto leader, Niklas Stalvind remained at the helm -- which he did and still does. This may be the band's most guitar-centric project yet. Ridiculous as such a claim may seem when applied to any heavy metal band, enthusiasts of the genre will readily recognize it as a fact once the galloping riffs and duelling harmonies of opener "Speed On" commence the album's battle of the axes. That being said, Niklas’s vocals do not hold back either. Very solid for the style of the album with some interesting and catchy vocal lines to ensure you won’t forget that chorus soon.
The album opens with a bit of speed metal (“Speed On”) and continues in the realm of classic metal with “Curse you Salem”, “Voodoo” and “Hail Caesar” – where you’ll no doubt make the connection between them and Iron Maiden, Black Sabbath and Judas Priest’s old acts. Surprisingly, the album-titled track is one of the weakest in the album, but “Mr Twisted”, “Love at First Bite” and “Whiskey Psycho Hellions” (??) will quickly excite you again with some rather tasty riffs. “Hiding in Shadows” and “Blood Angel” close the album, the latter with some nice acoustic guitar parts, leaving your metal appetite satisfied.
The final balance brings Ravenous close to the top of Wolf’s discography – not reaching The Black Flame but not overshadowed by it either. All in all, I would say that this album is a worthy item to be in your metal catalogue because of its genuine effort to be exactly that – a solid heavy metal collectible listen.