Heavy riffs are pulsing from the Greek Islands as Black Soul Horde release their second album.
It has been a while since we heard new music from Athens heavy metal band Black Soul Horde. Their first album, Tales Of The Ancient Ones, came out in 2013. There have been a lot of twists and turns since then, but, whatever road had to be traveled, the journey was a success because the new album is a showcase of old school metal. The primary driving force in the band is John Tsiakopoulos (guitars and bass), who also did all the producing and technical studio work. John is joined on Land of Demise by Jim Kotsis (vocals) and Costas Papaspyrou (guitar solos), with session drumming by Vasilis Nanos.
The musical style is a classic brand of heavy metal with clear New Wave Of British Heavy Metal roots. You can hear this in the vocals particularly but also in the rhythm and riffs. The percussion is more on the contemporary metal side and this overall combination seasons the songs for a crossover palate.
“Stone Giants” gets things started with a confident thumping tick and growing feedback consolidating into a theatrical opening (ala Vivian Campbell on Holy Diver, say). You start to get a sense of the scale of the musical composition as early as the second song “Into The Badlands,” where elements of epic metal show through, the drums really start roar, and a generous lead break makes its appearance.
Fantasy strands are persistent in the narrative themes and they shape the overall feel of the album. The songs are held in the four minute range, making them confrontable. The final songs are every bit as strong as the ones in the middle and the beginning. Indeed, the lead work winds up to new levels near the end in “Lord Of All Darkness” and, the closer, “Iron Will,” is a raging torrent with sinister outro. This album is definitely throwing up sparks. Recommended.
Land Of Demise had been delayed for a little while because of the pandemic. The digital is out now, with a CD release slated for December 14th, followed by the vinyl early in February.