Review SCREAMER ‘Kingmaker’

The region around Ljungby is sadly known to metal fans, as the name is closely connected with the tragic bus accident in 1986, which took the life of Metallica bassist Cliff Burton (R.I.P.). Fortunately, however, there are also positive thoughts that come to mind when you hear about this place between Malmö and Stockholm. This is mainly due to Screamer.

Screamer are still a relatively young band, even though they have been active for 13 years. It all started in 2009 and picked up speed in 2011, the year the band released ‘Adrenaline Distraction’, a noteworthy debut album. Then came ‘Phoenix’ and it was the third album, ‘Hell Machine’, with which the band was the talk of the town.

The band has its musical roots in traditional heavy metal and builds on the sound of the NWoBHM. In addition, the Swedes add an extra portion of melodies to their mix, which give the sound catchiness without sacrificing proper heaviness.

With ‘Kingmaker’ Screamer starts with a new record into the year 2023 and already after the first songs it is evident; this start is a very successful one.

Things kick off with the pumping title track, a song that contains all the trademarks of the Swedes and is therefore a very good gate opener. Already with the first listen you find yourself headbanging, which is a very good sign for such a record. It becomes more original with the powerful ‘Rise Above’ in which classic metal riffs unite with good melody before a very tuneful song comes next with ‘The Traveler’, a track that instantly attracts and somehow I have to think of Pretty Maids while listening to ‘The Traveler’.

In general Screamer stay with their songs under the four minute mark. The rather anthemic ‘Ashes and Fire’ is an exception here. Clocking in at over five minutes, Screamer have created a little masterpiece on their latest album; a song that immediately shows all its sparkle with its pounding rhythm. After such a rather epic excursion, the guys shift up a gears again with ‘Burn it Down’. The fast and powerful tune comes without gimmicks. Everything unnecessary is renounced and the pure essence of heavy metal is offered.

‘Kingmaker’ marks a felicitous start into the metallic year 2023. Screamer remain true to themselves and have lost nothing of their punch even four years after ‘Highway of Heroes’. Traditional heavy metal is alive and you can feel that with every note played on this album.

Rating: 8 out of 10.

Tracklist:

  1. Kingmaker
  2. Rise Above
  3. The Traveler
  4. Hellfire
  5. Chasing The Rainbow
  6. Ashes And Fire
  7. Burn It Down
  8. Fall Of a Common Man
  9. Sounds Of the Night
  10. Renegade

Label: Steamhammer

Genre: Heavy Metal

Release Date EU: January 13th, 2023

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