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Released: 2011, Victory Records
Reviewer: Metal-Rules.com UK Team
Melodic death metal band Blackguard, (Or as I like to call them ‘Children of Bodom Junior’) really know how to make a solid, fist in your face killer album that has: Catchy vocal lines, insane double kick drumming, and shredding guitar solos making Firefight 44 minutes of pure full foe metal. Hold on tight because this storm of an album is a powerful one, guaranteed to knock you down as soon as it hits!
Firefight is in a totally different league to Blackguards previous effort Profugus Mortis (Also the bands former name). Where Profugus Mortis took a trip down blackened folk lane, Firefight looked to its melodic death metal forefathers such as: Children of Bodom, Arch Enemy and Amon Amarth for inspiration. Going for a more death metal approach to the music was an excellent move for Blackguard, as Firefight serves up some of the most memorable chorus’s and guitar hooks of 2011 so far. If you look at the riff in the title track ‘Firefight’, it is a blistering guitar line which when mixed with the synth sounds and the double kick drums in the background, powers through your speakers at 500mph! When you delve deeper through the Alexi Laiho sounding vocals in the verses, and the talented musicianship of each song, you get catchy chorus’s which hook the listener from the first note and leave them begging for more in the end.
If you aren’t really into your melodic death metal then you should still check out Firefight for its power metal styled mix. Amongst the stabbing riffs and harsh vocals we still have present the keyboard and synth which we hear in previous Blackguard releases. The orchestral and choral parts in tracks like: ‘Farewell’, ‘Cruel Hands’ and ‘A Blinding Light’ are special indeed, showing that the band have experimented with this style of metal and twisted it to form this hybrid of metal mastery. You definitely need the melodic bits as they superbly compliment the more brutal bits setting the music in a much grander and epic spectrum.
Musically there is nothing wrong with Firefight. You get lost in all that death metal goodness and before you know it these ten amazing tracks are over. I’m being serious when I say this. You will actually want to listen to it over and over again just to make up for the fact that time flies when you are listening to a killer album. Blackguard have given the listener a fantastic array of well written, well produced, battle sturdy anthems which unfortunately only last for 44 minutes.
If you like Children of Bodom you will love this album. If you are a fan of Dragonforce then this is the album for you. Most of all though. If you call yourself a metal head then you must own this album. Firefight is so diverse it is unbelievable and I bet that is the reason why it will make so many top tens of 2011.
Review: Matthew Seddon
7.The Fear of the Flesh
8.A Blinding Light
Vocals – Paul Zinay
Guitars - Terry Deschenes
Guitars - Kim Gosselin
Bass - Étienne Mailloux
Drums - Justine Ethier
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