Review ANNIHILATOR ‘Metal II’

Annihilator stands for excellent metal since 1984 the year when guitarist Jeff Waters founded the Canadian powerhouse. The remarkable debut ‘Alice in Hell’ brought the band some immediate attention and since then, Waters and band are a very constant factor in metal with 17 longplayers under their belt.

These days it is earMUSIC that start the re-issue a number of Annihilator records with ‘Metal II’ being the first one that hits the shelves. ‘Metal II’ relates to the ‘Metal’ album from 2007. ‘Metal’ didn’t only shine by great metal tracks, a prerequisite if you give an album such a title. The songs on this longplayer also includes a bigger number of guest appearances.

When Waters was asked which of the Annihilator albums he would love to do once again, the answer was: “Metal”. Not totally satisfied with the final result of ‘Metal,’ the guitarist and producer started to shape the ides of a new version of this classic. With all the original songs and all the guest contribution the remaining question was who should sing and who should sit behind the drum kit. The solution to this problem couldn’t have been much better than having Stu Block and the legendary Dave Lombardo on board for this undertaking.

The result is an album that contains all songs from the 2007 release. Each of these tracks sound stronger and more powerful. The density on this album certainly gained compared to the original version which is also thanks to the work of sound engineer Mike Fraser. He had to work with a larger number sound tracks from 2006 and 2021. He had to bring it all together and the result impresses.

Next to the fact that these metal anthems shine brighter than on the original album, ‘Metal II’ is dedicated to two guitarists that passed away far too early – Eddie Van Halen and Alexi Laiho. While the latter added back in time a guitar solo to the straight neck breaker ‘Downright Dominate’ while it is Van Halen’s ‘Romeo Delight’ being an addition to the original tracklist and a tribute to the band’s iconic guitarist.

The songs of ‘Metal II’ are known and still there is enough extras embed on this album to make it also to an exciting release for fans that call the 2007 release their own. A much stronger sound and the mentioned Van Halen classic make ‘Metal II’ to an album that carries the bold title with proud. Time for some headbanging.

Rating: 8 out of 10.

Tracklist:

  1. Chasing The High featuring William Adler
  2. Downright Dominate featuring Alexi Laiho
  3. Army Of One featuring Steve “Lips” Kudlow
  4. Couple Suicide featuring Danko Jones and Angela Gossow
  5. Heavy Metal Maniac featuring Dan Beehler & Allan Johnson
  6. Haunted featuring Jesper Strömblad
  7. Romeo Delight
  8. Detonation featuring Jacob Lynam
  9. Clown Parade featuring Jeff Loomis
  10. Smothered featuring Anders Björler
  11. Kicked featuring Corey Beaulieu

Label: earMusic

Genre: Metal

Release Date EU: February 18th, 2022

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