Sunday, December 21, 2014

(Not that) Restless and Fairly Mild

Accept – Blind Rage

Nuclear Blast Records – 2014

Muthas, the Teutonic Terrors Accept are back with their third album since their reformation in 2009 – Blind Rage. The previous two albums with Mark Tornillo were both great slabs of excellent traditional Metal that had all the hallmarks that fans expect of Accept.  How does this new album stack up agaist the standards set by Blood of the Nations and Stalingrad

Unfortunately, Blind Rage is something of a disappointment.  Interviews with the band made it sound like this album would be very heavy and aggressive – it’s titled Blind Rage after all, and the album starts off quite well with the kickass “Stampede” and the celebration of the history of Metal that is “Dying Breed.” 

It’s then that the album comes to a screeching halt with “Dark Side of My Heart.”  This track starts out with a riff borrowed from “Up To The Limit” (which is awesome) but then slides into a melancholy bore.  WTF?  This is followed by a succession of underwhelming songs – “Fall of the Empire,” “Trail of Tears,” and “Wanna Be Free.”  At this point, the listener wants to be free of boredom by listening to something else.   

Thankfully, the pace, and the song quality, pick up with “200 Years” and “Bloodbath Mastermind.”  Both cuts are very good and are up to the standard set by the other Tornillo helmed albums, but the next two songs - “The Curse” and “From The Ashes We Rise” - are plodding and just as melancholy as most of the rest of the album.  The last track, “Final Journey,” does finish off the album with a bang and is one of the best tracks on the disc.

I know the band had more time to write and record this album, and I think this lack of urgency is reflected in the overall tone of the album.  It’s a weird, gloomy album that both musically and lyrically feels depressing.  A couple of speedier tunes in the vein of “Pandemic” or “Beat The Bastards” would have really helped to propel this album and break up the slower material. 

Does anyone really want to hear several slow songs bemoaning the fate of the world and the trite pablum of “Wanna Be Free”?  I know I don’t.  This is Metal for the love of God!  Strap it on and start kicking some ass!  Sheesh.


The Bottom Line: Accept’s new album is a something of a disappointment and is definitely the least of the Tornillo trilogy.  Not enough songs with that killer Accept viciousness help to drag Blind Rage down to the merely ordinary.  Accept fans will find some good tracks, but this album isn’t essential by any means.  At least the deluxe edition comes with a great live DVD – so we’ve got that going for us.  Which is nice.


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