Writing about ACCEPT’S Metal music is not hard as I have know them for more than 15 years, I lived and grew up with their music. I remember the first time I’ve heard ACCEPT, it was “Head Over Heels”, what a song! After 36 years you know what has changed about ACCEPT’s music? NOTHING! They are still on a high level and are legends, even more, in fact they signify true Heavy Metal.
In 2009, when ACCEPT announced rejoining, and UDO declined to join, then they announced new a singer, Mark Tornillo and begun working on new material, everybody wondered how the album would be without UDO, as he was one of the bases of this strong German castle. But as always time flies, all people soon saw that ACCEPT knows Heavy Metal very well, even more than some other legendary bands, who couldn’t go back to their roots with quality. ACCEPT released a masterpiece killer album, “Blood Of The Nations”, in 2010. The album included such songs like “The Abyss”, “Time Machine” and “Teutonic Terror” which the band released a video for too. “Blood Of The Nations” was an answer for all hungry ACCEPT’s fan who had been waiting for 14 years. It was their dream to have new material from their No.1 band and had this question in their head, ‘What can ACCEPT do with modern technology?’
Yesterday, April 6, ACCEPT have released their newest album, “Stalingrad” via Nuclear Blast, produced by British musician and producer Andy Sneap. Andy knows what true Heavy Metal is, as his career in HELL band demonstratesl. Check out what legendary Wolf Hoffmann said: “ACCEPT and Andy Sneap have the perfect synergy. This was so clear with ‘Blood Of The Nations’ and we are excited to continue on that path. Andy is not only an amazing and prolific producer but also a very good friend who has long become a member of the ACCEPT family.”
Starts with an ACCEPT ish track which remind me the roots and golden age of Heavy Metal, the track entitled “Hung, Drawn And Quartered” which is a great beginning for a new ACCEPT talent book, self titled track comes as the second track and it enters so heavy and so strong. ACCEPT teaches us how to mix some killer guitar and bass riffs with monster hunter drums rhythms in this album, and “Stalingrad” track is the best example for it, this track is remembering to the Stalingrad battle between German and Russian soldiers in WWII era and I can feel it ‘s whispering so heavy the pain and the lost honor of all who killed on that battle.
Guitarists Wolf Hoffmann and Herman Frank seem to be unstoppable in playing killer riffs – In “Hellfire” they continue with some hellish magical riffs which are played by a distorted guitar and also a clean one plus a mysterious guitar solo in the background. You’ll find it a point to bang your head with the timeless rhythms of the legendary ACCEPT. The tracks “Flash To Bang Time” and “Against The World” are the point that you face the Power Metal ish ACCEPT side, which the German metallers know better than everyone, Fast, Powerful and Heavy guitars, bass and drums and they will give you a memory of “Breaker”.
This magical show continues with a gentle heavy metal song, “Shadow Soldier” which reminds me a little of the role of “Kill The Pain” track in their previous album or “Winter Dreams” from their timeless album “Balls To The Wall” and it is my choice as the best track of this album. The track starts with an amazing arpeggios by acoustic guitar and a solo guitar in the background which shows the genius of legendary Wolf Hoffmann and what he can do with his Gibson guitar. “Stalingrad” is the second album of ACCEPT, featuring high range vocalist Mark Tornillo who is the best choice for replacing UDO no doubt, his voice gave ACCEPT a new life, he did one of his best vocal performances in this album, especially in “Shadow Soldiers”.
Another notable song in this album is “Twist Of Fate” which reminds me of Heavy Rock solo guitars and riffs of legendary guitarist Ritchie Blackmore, Rainbow-Era, as I ‘ve heard it before in Wof’s previous work, especially in his solo album, “Classical”. Next track, “The Quick And The Dead” is fast, strong and filled by heavy guitar and drum riffs and fantastic solos which complete the song. But maybe the bold moment of this song is when amazing Peter Baltes starts playing a wonderful riff and Rocking his bass guitar. The last track of this masterpiece is entitled “The Galley”, starting with a mysterious riff and after that a gallop riff that I was waiting for from the first track, as I’m a big fan of gallop riffs, especially when ACCEPT do it, remember what they did in “Metal Heart” or in “Head Over Heels” and you see what I mean. The track sounds even better when Wolf starts playing an amazing oriental riff, as he has done so well before and seems he is a master at it. The album draws to a close with “The Galley” but it’s not THE END, as me and you want to listen again and again, and that’s the magic of what ACCEPT can do, and with this album they reminded us why we call them LEGENDS.
As my final word, I want to warn those hasty rockers who will not find this album such an impressing album like the ACCEPT’S previous one at the first listening, Don’t be hasty, try to listen again and I’m sure you’ll enjoy it exactly like what I did and do. My rating for the ACCEPT’S latest album, “Stalingrad”, is 9.5/10.
“Stalingrad” track listing:
01. Hung, Drawn And Quartered
04. Flash To Bang Time
05. Shadow Soldiers
07. Against The World
08. Twist Of Fate
09. The Quick And The Dead
10. Never Forget (bonus track)
11. The Galley
Review by Mohsen Fayyazi