End Of The Night
Released: 2016, Massacre Records
September 19th is International Talk Like A Pirate Day, (Yes, it is a real thing, check out the website) and since I was enjoying the new albums by Running Wild and Silverbones (both reviewed here this month) I might as well mix my pirate and hockey metaphors and present a hat-trick of oceanic/piraticus Metal albums.
Germany’s Gloryful seem quite productive with another album, their third full-length on Massacre Records since 2013. Not much has changed, the album was recorded at Powerwolf’s studio, Kris Verwimp does the cover art and there has been a minor change in that guitarist Adrian Weiss is now fully integrated into the band. There have been no major changes to the bands sound, nor did we want any changes.
Much like the last album, Gloryful has semi-concept behind the lyrics which is kind of hard to explain, so I will actually ‘cut and paste’ this quote directly from the bands press kit! You can decide if the story sounds awesome or not. For the record, I think it does! “ Lyrically, END OF THE NIGHT marks the logical follow-up to OCEAN BLADE and opens a new chapter in the legend of Sedna (Goddess of the Inuit): Hundreds of years after the demise of the "Ocean Blade", Cpt. McGuerkin has risen from his tomb on the bottom of the ocean. He’s now called King Guerkin and leads his faithful and revengeful crew into the next battle.” That sums it up better than I could and it gives you an idea that these sea-faring Metallers work in the world of high fantasy. They skirt around the fringes of the pirate Metal sub-genre, not actually sounding like Running Wild and other bands of that style, but certainly have a kinship with oceanic tales and attitude.
I must admit, sonically and musically, my initial impression of END OF THE NIGHT was not as strong as when I first heard OCEANS BLADE. The latter had an immediate appeal to me while the new album has taken several spins for me to wrap my head around it. They are textbook flawless but something didn’t grab me quite as quickly. I enjoyed the atmospheric introductory instrumental piece with sound effects and a cello. The band rips through several fast numbers, making lacking in a bit of personality. The skill, power and speed is all there but perhaps the songs are not as catchy as others. An album highlight for me is the title track, which is oddly enough a ballad! It is a lush atmospheric piece with a stringed instrument, sounds like a fiddle to me interplayed with a simple acoustic guitar line and all accented with the slightly gruff but still excellent delivery of vocalist Johnny. It seems the album is back-loaded with the stronger tracks. The band employs some big, bad backing gang vocals, and many big sing along chants as variations of the classic ‘Woah’! . After a very short, subdued the cut ‘On fire’ just rips for about six minutes straight before coming full-circle and closing with another acoustic outro. The album finishes strong with another fast one called ‘Rise Of The Sacred Star’ with more big gang, sing-along backing vocals. The albums rips from start to finish.
I would recommend Gloryful with confidence to any fan of Powerwolf, Sabaton, Lonewolf, Rebellion, Grave Digger etc and any other number of big, bombastic Germanic, anthemic Metal bands.