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HammerFall - Infected


AlphaMale

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Anybody checked this out yet? Pretty much a disappointment for me. A few songs are good but for the most part, this is a bad disc. Songs about zombies and radiation clouds instead of templars, battlefields, and warriors? WTF?

 

Even the bands mascot Hector is gone. What happened HammerFall??

hammerfall-infected-o-card.jpg

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Here's Hardrock Haven's Review:

 

http://hardrockhaven.net/online/2011/hammerfall-infected/

 

Weird. To hear the opening track “Patient Zero” on HammerFall’s new release, Infected, is just plain weird. Known for being one of the most galloping and triumphant composers in all of Power Metal, this somewhat new direction will take longtime fans by surprise. And why the new logo? Not that metal fans are control freaks, but knowing you can “count” on something — like your favorite band not turning their logo from a sword into a scab — is not the same as wanting to control it. All that weirdness aside, it’s HammerFall, and Infected is still going to end up being a success … maybe even in spite of themselves.

 

A female voice opens the album on “Patient Zero,” with sirens wailing in the background, as she says “Contamination breach in sector 7G. Evacuation protocols for Project Legion in effect. Emergency shutdown in five seconds.” Instead of spirited riffs and soaring vocals, you get a near Candlemass dirge, a doomy, mid-tempo construction with Joacim Cans singing with his fathomless talent but at a much more metered and measured pace. While it’s a great track … it’s nearly uncomfortable as you wait for them to double or triple the speed. And they don’t, not here, not yet. Obviously, there’s a bit of a concept here, with Patient Zero being infected with Project Legion, meaning, there’s a lot more than one person/soul/being inside the body. Still …

HammerFall had little choice but to get back on track with the second song, or risk losing people. “Bang Your Head” is probably how most people expected the album to begin. Here, you’ll get tempo changes and those insane vocal melodies so germane to HammerFall’s legacy. Of course, Dronjak’s solo is as vivid and effortless as expected, and everything new is old again.

 

“The Outlaw” is a chaotic and cool barnburner. The riffs are complicated, and Anders Johansson’s drumming is a marvel. It’s mostly unfair how much talent this band wields in every facet. While the music is intense and interesting, the lyrics and the way the vocals are delivered don’t measure up; were they trying not to let the vocals get in the way of the musical mastery? Or is this just an uninspired lyrical and vocal moment?

Again, just when you start questioning the band, they come at you with the majestic and heartfelt “Send Me a Sign.” Maybe HammerFall is just so damn good they have finally started screwing with their fans — as in, expect the unexpected, metalheads. With deft acoustic picking, haunting and masterful vocals from Cans, “Send Me a Sign” blazes near the end and then fades to an acoustic end. Not weird.

Getting back to the Patient Zero theme, the uplifting “666 – The Enemy Within” is one of the highlights of the entire release. With a more reminiscent song structure, the tale speaks of a man awakening to a bloody trail, spouting poetry like “There’s an echo in the mirror, of a man I do not know, staring back at the scar on my neck, and the numbers are screaming … 666!” The entire song crescendos near the close, changing pace and becoming both glorious and vile all at the same time.

 

Whether this is a concept record or really an album with a running theme (you say potato, they say potato gun), the narrative from “Immortalized” to ”Lets Get It On” to “Redemption” is the album’s denouement. In the keyboard-crazy “Redemption,” you will experience sorrow-laden musical passages, metallic orchestration and overall, it’s a madly fitting way to close the pages of Infected.

 

In fairness, you can’t expect HammerFall NOT to grow as musicians, even though historically they’ve shown little interest in doing so. Wake up call — they are interested now. Infected is darker, more intense and perhaps more thematic than anything they’ve ever composed. That means little if it isn’t a good album, but it is. Whether this is a one-time “off the beaten path” journey or an indication of what lies ahead, HammerFall is still a force, albeit a weird one this time around.

 

Band:

Joacim Cans – Vocals

Oscar Dronjak – Guitar

Anders Johansson – Drums

Fredrik Larsson – Bass

Pontus Norgren – Guitar

 

Tracklist

1. Patient Zero

2. Bang Your Head

3. One More Time

4. The Outlaw

5. Send Me A Sign

6. Dia De Los Muertos

7. I Refuse

8. 666 – The Enemy Within

9. Immortalized

10. Let’s Get It On

11. Redemption

 

Label: Nuclear Blast Records

Online: http://www.hammerfall.net/

 

Hardrock Haven rating: 7.7/10

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I amhappy to buy and give this one a go. To be honest, and I am obviously in the minority but I reckon HF have played it safe for far too long. I dig the band and I love zombies and I reckon Pontus is one of the best guitarists going around so I'll be listening with open ears :)

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I'll be honest, I'm not the biggest fan of this album, but it's not all bad either. So many fans have been saying that Hammerfall keeps releasing the same album over and over again, but when they finally change it up, their fans get all bent out of shape... I guess you just can't win em all.

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Probably the WORST Cover art yet for a Hammerfall album.. But, being a fan I Will pick this up and give it a listen.. I have heard the stories about how they Changed and shit.. Hey bands WILL evolve.. I just hope they don't stray TOO far from their sound..... :whistle:

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I was worried when I saw that they were using James Michael to produce and although he is a great producer I was worried they would change into a more modern band. I guess I can't expect them to keep singing about Heeding the Call and being a Renegade but I do like that you can always count on them for a straigh ahead heavy metal album so I haven't been in to big a hurry to hear this yet even though I own all of their studio albums. I'm sure I'll buy it eventually.

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  • 4 weeks later...

So I grabbed this for $9.99 over the weekend and so far it's okay. Well produced but I'd rather this band stick to what they do best and just play straight up heavy metal and not try to do different things but that might just be me. There's certain things you should be able to count on in life such as death, taxes and Hammerfall making cheesy badass straight up Heavy Metal. I'll keep playing but half way through I'm dissapointed.

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