Recipe: Take Manowar lyrics. Add a bit of old Judas Priest. After rocking for a bit, throw in a scintilla of old Iron Maiden, and leave it baking for a while. Finally, pick a few random old German metal bands (in the vein of, say, old Helloween and old Scorpions) and stir without relent. Let the mix cool off, and examine the whole thing the next morning. Chances are significant you will end up with Hammerfall's "Glory to the Brave".

What we have here is a German five-piece with added compository cooperation of Jesper "In Flames" Stromblad, who have sought to improve upon the classic heavy metal bands of old. Their singer sounds a lot like Kai Hansen or Klaus Meine, though with an understandably lower range as the former. Bits of lyrics like "the power of metal unchained", "we follow the king", "spread your wings and you will fly" and dozens more like this should tell you exactly what you bargain for. There are two true metal ballads to be found on the disc, too, as well as a tight cover of Warlord's "Child of the Damned".

"Glory to the Brave" is a trip down memory lane for those who have been in the rock and metal scene for a longer time or, if you've entered it rather more recently, a collection of old farts making horribly dated tripe. Whatever is the case, I like it.

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Written September 1997


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