Released: 2014, Czar Of Bullets
Geneva, Switzerland’s Claw is a self-proclaimed post-apocalyptic metal band. The band’s self-titled debut draws visual inspiration from the Mad Max movies as well musical influence from the titans of thrash metal, like Kreator, Megadeth and Metallica but also from more gothic influences like Paradise Lost. Armed with good riffs and powerful drumming this is a worthy debut that should impress fans of the above mentioned bands.
“Claws In So Deep” is one of the best places to start, combining elements of Testament’s guitar work with the Mustaine-like vocals of Serge Morattel while showcasing all of the band’s elements in one epic tune, nearly 8 minutes long. One thing that quickly stands out with Claw is their emphasis on thoughtful riffs and rhythmic structures, the guitars clearly presented as the strength of Claw. In terms of tempo, Claw prefers a mid-paced approach but does vary things up with “Alone”, a very respectable ballad. Conversely the previously mentioned “Claws In So Deep” is the fastest and heaviest tune which features the angriest vocals as well. “Too Late” opens as a speedier tune recalling KILL ‘EM ALL’s style of riffs before transitioning to a BLACK ALBUM like verse and some cool bowel grind vocals help transition to the speedy close to the song. Likewise, the middle section of “Dawn Of A New Era” is particularly intense and inspired, really picking up speed in a good way.
Another strength to CLAW is the solid, self-produced sound of the album, this easily upping the professional quality of the album to near major label standards. The arrangements are logical if somewhat simple, the only major knock on the band being that this is clearly a product built on the backs of Claw’s many influences. So yes, this is not exactly an original effort, but one performed and executed lovingly, the band’s passion for this style being unmistakable. This enthusiasm helps to overcome some of the derivative nature of the album and proves Claw a band that bears watching. Fans of Megadeth and Metallica in particular will find many familiar and welcome elements with Claw.