Reviewed: March, 2018
Released: 2018 Bleeding Music Records
Reviewer: Peter Atkinson
While so many of their countrymen opt to go the vintage Swe-death route, Halmstad quartet Lechery – whose frontman Martin Bengtsson played bass on Arch Enemy’s Stigmata album 20 years ago – take their old school inclinations in a far more classic metal direction.
We Are All Born Evil, the band’s third album and first in seven years, teams with the punchy riffs and ear-worm hooks, twin-guitar dueling and huge sing-along choruses the likes of Saxon, Scorpions, Judas Priest and, especially, Accept championed back in the day – and still do, to a certain extent, today. “We are metal, that will never change, brothers and sisters, break the chains, shoulder to shoulder, we rule the world,” Lechery declare on “Rule The World.” And that is, essentially, the album’s mantra.
And though the band’s approach is reverent to a fault – the influences here are brazenly obvious – Evil is infectious as hell and packed with one fist-pumping anthem after another. “Heavy Metal Invasion” gets things off to a rousing, “Balls To The Wall”-like start and Lechery take the, umm, ball and run with it from there. For them, it’s the early ’80s all over again, and they make the most it over Evil’s 10 tunes.
“Let It Out” actually echoes early W.A.S.P. with its layer upon layer of backing vocals and sleeker presentation, but the rest of the album, for the most part, has more bite. The title track offers the same sort of massive chorus, but the hooks sink deeper and the solo tradeoffs are out of this world. “Even A Hero Must Die” and “Rule The World” kick up the tempos to near speed metal velocity without losing the anthemic grandeur. “Spineless” is perhaps the most modern sounding track, with its tempo changes and craftier arrangement, but it too is anchored by big, beefy guitars – and lots of them – and Bengtsson and company’s rally cry vocals.
The otherwise nicely crunchy “Sacrifice” stumbles a bit with its cheesy, chanted “Sac-ri-fice, neu-tral-ize” chorus and the nifty Thin Lizzy meets Maiden guitar work of the closing track “Tip Of The Whip” can’t overcome the Manowar-like dumbness of its lyrics. But those are really the only downers on an otherwise rather enjoyable album that will have your head bobbing from start to finish. And while Evil certainly does not have a terribly original sound, Lechery’s take on ’80s metal is about as good as it was back in the day.