Tuesday, 7 May 2019

ALBUM REVIEW: Herman Frank, "Fight The Fear"

By: Richard Maw

Album Type: Full Length#
Date Released: 08/02/2019
Label: AFM Records GmbH

This is superlative heavy metal delivered by one of the masters of the genre

“Fight The Fear” CD//DD//LP track listing:

1. Until The End
2. Fear
3. Terror
4. Sinners
5. Hatred
6. Hail & Row
7. Hitman
8. Stay Down
9. Rock You
10. Don’t Cross The Line
11. Are You Ready
12. Wings Of Destiny
13. Waiting For The Night
14. Lost In Heaven

The Review:

One half of Accept's legendary guitar attack returns to action here with a trad metal powerhouse of a record. I have two of his previous solo records- “Loyal to None” and “Right In The Guts”, but I must confess to missing “The Devil Rides Out” in 2016. What Herman gives the listener here is... traditional teutonic heavy metal. This is anthemic, bombastic- suitable for soundtracking crushing your enemies and seeing their women driven before you- and resolutely old school.

The Euro vocals of Rick Altizi are perfectly suited to the musical approach. The rest of the band play tight and heavy, while Herman is allowed to excel outside of Accept's confines as a player and riff master. The one-two punch combination of “Until The End” and “Fear” would sit admirably on any trad metal album you can name- a sound midway between Accept, Maiden, Motorhead and Priest. The “tanks rolling” feel of “Terror” may remind you of a certain Accept track that shares a lot of the same DNA, but this is what I want from Herman Frank- crushing metal delivered with complete conviction.

The heavy hits keep on coming- there are fourteen tracks on offer here. If anything, it's nearly too much as “Sinners” roars out of the traps with as much firepower as “Until The End”. It's a punishing hour long listen- but can soundtrack a lengthy workout superbly! “Hatred” is mid-tempo but no less crushing. There are moments of respite. “Hail & Row” is downcast and moodier than the preceding five tracks and “Hitman” is different again with its AC/DC feel. “Stay Down” is akin to Accept's more steady material while “Rock You” is as serious about business as the title implies.

The Motorhead-like loping groove of “Don't Cross The Line” would have done the Kilmister/Campbell/Dee line up proud. “Are You Ready” is a straight up rocker, built for a US amphitheatre in 1985. Yes, the lyrical cliches are constant and the feel is unashamedly retro, but so what? This is heavy metal. No more, no less. The album throws up an absolute gem in the form of “Wings of Destiny” and, naturally, it recalls Priest at the peak of the early 80's pomp. It may well be the best track on here and it absolutely slays.

”Lost In Heaven” is a more restrained finishing statement from Herman Frank and his band. I can't help but recommend this album to lovers of real traditional metal. It's a long record- maybe a couple of tracks too long- but there is not a duff song on here and it matches any other trad album of recent times, I reckon. This is superlative heavy metal delivered by one of the masters of the genre. It will wreck.

“Fight The Fear” is available HERE

Band info: facebook