Friday, March 13, 2015
traditional heavy metal RENEGADE
Renegade (Italy): Thunder Knows No Mercy (Pure Steel Records) Bands like Judas Priest, Primal Fear and HammerFall are the personification of heavy metal. That is, if someone wants a definition of heavy metal, it is not difficult to provide one. Listen to “Stained Class” or “Defenders of the Faith” or “Nuclear Fire” or “Glory to the Brave.” That is what traditional heavy metal is. Renegade is heavy metal. Renegade is a bunch of stubborn fanatics that has studied the sounds, songs, structures, tempos, traditions, solos, guitar work and vocals of heavy metal. Renegade says, “If you feel at home with heavy metal, give us a chance to show you what we can do for you.” In metal, if a band shows that they are serious students of the music and they can demonstrate that they have the whole package (talent, skill, desire), too, then that is when a band is worth your time and money. Renegade is not fooling around at all, and immediately comes across as seriously dedicated heavy metal played by a talented group. The first song, “Nobody Lives Forever” makes clear that the band means to capture the devoted listener of the style. This midtempo/uptempo song has everything you want in the style. Then, “The World Is Dying” follows up with a faster energy that establishes the muscle of Renegade. Now, comes the crucial question, “Ok, so the first few songs rock, but what about the rest of the album?” The album has eight songs, and at no time do I get the impression that there is one single filler track. All the songs sound like the band has worked on them a lot. In reality, the complete album sounds like they labored on every song. For me, this matter is very important because I don’t want to listen to some band that has two or three good songs, and then the rest of the album is a bunch of inferior songs. Isn’t that really what the listener wants? An album that shows dedication to the craft throughout, instead of half-hearted songs or a collection of half-done, hastily written songs; or, just as bad, a band with little talent and skill; attitude alone is not enough in heavy metal; you must have the skills. Renegade has been active since 2005 and with this album now has five albums in total. This is the first time that I hear this band’s music, and Renegade leaves a very good impression after listening to the album a few times. This is Renegade. This is heavy metal.