Metal Bulletin Zine (est. 2006) (Washington state, USA), 203 issues so far.
pdfs at https://issuu.com/metalbulletinzine
Monday, April 15, 2019
Beyond the Void
8 March 2019
Album number nine. The first one was released in 2000 and pleased the die-hard fans of European-style polished power metal. In 2019 Iron Fire is much grittier, heavier, rougher heavy metal, closer to Motörhead than to Helloween, closer to traditional heavy metal and thrash than to joyous power metal, closer to the local pub than to a fancy wine tasting event, closer to the city streets’ hustle and bustle than to rainbows, damsels in distress and knights in shining armor. Somewhere along the line the band has chosen to sound considerably more muscular, with more punch, more crunch and nowadays they have quite an individual sound.
What a cool tune “Bad Habits Die Hard” is. Rowdy, rough around the edges, but with melodies above the chunky riffs, and the gritty singing that has melodies, but man, there’s lots of crunch in the tone, like a mix of that Elvis-Danzig-Motörhead-Volbeat tone, but with some high notes to boot. The ballad “Judgement Day” dials up a little bit of the blues; hey, this is a ballad, but it’s a tough-and-rough ballad, not a wimpy one. It’s not trying to make you cry, it’s trying to make you raise your fist. This is a ballad for tough, salt-of-the-earth people. This is followed by “To Hell and Back,” a thrashing, double bass drumming and the singing kicking up the grit, some bits of melodic singing, but some lower singing, too, that is not really growling, but it’s intense nonetheless.
What a great place musically Iron Fire find themselves in 2019. The old fans hopefully are adjusting well to the heavier direction that the Danes have been pursuing for years now, given that this is not some unannounced change that has arrived out of nowhere. This is where they have been heading for the last few albums. It’s a good spot. To anyone that objects to the old heavy metal bands because the genre is supposedly wimpy and sugary, check out this album! You might be surprised by how much muscle and elbow grease Iron Fire puts into this heavy metal. Who says that old dogs cannot learn new tricks?! These old dogs can school new puppies all day every day and twice on Sunday.