Review Summary: Powerwolf’s inevitable fame is starting to take form.
2 of 2 thought this review was well written
Power metal, is without a doubt, a very cheesy genre. It doesn’t take a genius to realize that dragon slaying themed music over layering an orchestra is going to be ridiculous, and at times childish in the sense of maturity (mainly with the themes of the music, not the song writing itself). However, very few bands can break the mold in the power metal genre to be relevant enough to follow. Obviously, the veterans of the genre, such as Blind Guardian or Stratovarius, have distinctive sounds that have made them who they are. For most power metal bands, the talents of the musicians are not in question; it is the style of producing original music. If Dragonforce did not speed up their music and craft solos that are virtually 5 minutes long they would not have the fame that they have today, they would still be squabbling in the underground for the most part. In the case of Powerwolf, the band’s brand of power metal is without a doubt original. Answer me this: how many power metal bands do you know of that has a “blackened” sound? Yes, you read that correctly: Blackened power metal. However, Powerwolf does not incorporate characteristics of real black metal into their sound. Instead, they use corpse paint as part of their imagery, anti-Christian lyrical themes, haunting keyboards, and other tasteful vampiric elements. In a way, they more or less echo the controversial image of black metal. Thus, they created some sort of originality.
Once starting Preachers of the Night, “Amen and Attack” starts the album off with strength, along with notable improvement in the guitar leads from the Greywolf brothers. However, the song itself is a cliché in many ways: ranging from the theme and the song structure. The important part for any listener is that they can get past the first song, and if you can, you are going to be in for a treat. That is, if you have enjoyed what you have heard so far. The follow up to “Amen and Attack” is “Secrets of the Sacristy”. This song is an indefinite highlight of the album for its more traditional use of power metal elements, rather than their own brand of power metal. However, the main notice of the song is, yet again, the guitar leads put on by the Greywolf brothers.
Other notable highlights include “Cardinal Sin”, “Sacred and Wild”, “Coleus Sanctus”, and “Extatum Et Oratum”. All of which contains notable improvements in the guitar leads by the Greywolf brothers (which has been quite a surprise), and soaring operatic vocals from Attila Dorn that captivates the listener from the beginning until the end (but that’s already a dead given if you already knew, or if you were familiar with Attila’s vocals off of previous Powerwolf albums). Despite these tracks being selected as notable highlights, the other tracks that are not mentioned in the notable highlights category have the same amount of quality to offer as the aforementioned songs. The only reason why they do not fall into that category is mainly because there was room for improvement that they did not take up, or they just didn’t expand on an area of the song where it could have been appropriate. Don’t get me wrong or anything; the listener should be content with virtually every song off of Preachers of the Night. That is, if you can enjoy Powerwolf for who, and what they are.
In conclusion, Preachers of the Night is just another Powerwolf album when one looks at the broader picture, despite the enjoyable quality that it has. Is it true that Powerwolf is not exactly expanding on their current sound? Yes, it is true. However, that should not be a means of any justification to write off this album. The quality of Preachers of the Night relies solely on its simple catchiness; there’s nothing flashy what so ever on the album, it’s just a fun listen. And when I previously said “Powerwolf’s inevitable fame is starting to take form” in the summary, all that means is that this album will surely pick up more fans when they go back on tour. To know what I mean by that is to know what Powerwolf truly sounds like, for they have great potential within their sound. Nevertheless, there is praise for the Greywolf brothers’ improvement on their lead efforts, although they can put more effort into it if they so desire. After all, they do have that potential. Preachers of the Night may be a simple album compromised with expected outcomes, but the album is enjoyable and possibly a guilty pleasure for some. A must listen for any power/heavy metal fans.
'Answer me this: how many power metal bands do you know of that has a “blackened” sound? Yes, you read that correctly: Blackened power metal. However, Powerwolf does not incorporate characteristics of real black metal into their sound. Instead, they use corpse paint as part of their imagery, anti-Christian lyrical themes, haunting keyboards, and other tasteful vampiric elements. In a way, they more or less echo the controversial image of black metal. Thus, they created some sort of originality.'
Insane Clown Posse use corpse paint, so are they influenced by black metal as well? Anti-christian themes were common in the second wave of norwegian black metal because they were trying to be controversial and they wanted to shine a light on their pagan heritage, this does not mean that those types of lyrics are 'typical' for black metal bands, as bands that came after the second wave quickly strayed away from that kind of imagery.
Also, the usage of keyboards is very common amongst power metal bands and as such I would be hesitant to say these guys were influenced by early black metal bands on any other front other than their stylistic image.
Oh and asking your readers a question is generally a bad idea, you should try to keep yourself from doing that, it reads quite awkwardly.
'Preachers of the Night may be a simple album compromised with expected outcomes, but the album is enjoyable and possibly a guilty pleasure for some. A must listen for any power/heavy metal fans.'
Either it's a guilty pleasure or it's a must-listen, can't be both. Also, based on the rest of your conclusion (which contains a lot of negative points) and your final rating I'd hardly call it a must-listen.
I actually listened to this album after reading your review, which was quite persuasive. Power metal never really was
my thing, for i prefer death growl to soft vocals, melodic as they may be. Yet, despite my tastes, i thought it was
worth a try.
Preachers of the night may come off as silly for many reason, but i'll simply point out the main one. The use of
typical latin sentences often found in well-known prayers was an unpleasant cliché for the most part; for some
reason it gave the impression, that it was clumsily employed and thrown at random throughout the songs. Lyrics as a
whole for that matter, weren't exactly the highlight of this album.
This being said, it wasn't all that bad. While none of the songs of the LP can really be considered as a masterpiece, a
few tracks make up in "catchiness". "Amen and Attack", "Coleus Sanctus", "Sacred and Wild" and "Lust for Blood" had
many strong points, mainly because of the very well mastered chorus and some pleasant guitar riffs. "Last of the
living dead" was definitely my favorite out of the eleven tracks, with its slower pace and its crafty atmosphere, thanks
to the organ.
I believe there is enough potential here to build what could be good, maybe great, music. Yet, it would seem
Powerwolf hasn't reach this point yet, and won't come close to it unless they work hard to improve their art. Then
again, being a die hard fan of death growls and melodic craft, i may not be the best power metal band advisor.
Nevertheless, Preachers of the Night remains enjoyable. It isn't serious and sophisticated enough to be considered
epic or majestic... But there's definitely something worth listening there. Let's just pray Powerwolf won't sink in the
sea of abomination where so many power metal bands got trapped with little hope of redemption.