WITH Accept you get what you ask for and nothing more - a heavy metal band, playing heavy metal music: no frills, no fucking about, no bullshit and no pretence or genre splitting. Yet this time out they stretch their vision so much further...
With their latest release 'Rise of Chaos' you get a stand-out album of riffs, solos, choruses to sing-a-long to, and more importantly deceptively straightforward metal.
This album rocks like Satan's rocking chair on amphetamines. Sure, there is nothing too particularly ground-breaking that is going to bother the charts or the wankers on the Mercury Music Awards - but fuck them! They are more to be pitied than hated for not listening to Accept.
As Mark declares the band he - and the band - are an "old-school son-of-bitch".
There is something glorious about this release. With 'Blind Rage' they topped 'Stalingrad' but on 'Rise of Chaos' there is a looseness and anger steeped within every track: a vision of the outsider standing, looking at the mayhem around them, yet still staying true to Accept's snear.
Wolf declared the intent behind the album when he said: “The Rise Of Chaos is something I have been thinking about often. It describes a condition which is slowly spreading around the world.
"With the stage setup on our latest European tour, we wanted to portray rather dystopian and destroyed scenery. If you now take a look at our new cover, it’s the same imagery. This time however you can also spot the invisible destruction that we feel more and more in these times, as well as the visible destruction.”
And by Baphomet's hairy balls they have achieved something remarkable...
From the declaration of the title track, through to 'No Regrets' and 'What's Done is Done' it is hard to find fault with this release. Packed with songs that will have feet tapping and heads banging it is wondrous.
In fact, here in the deepest bowels of Metal Mansions we had to check with our coven of witches and wizards were we over-rating it...Nah, of course we weren't!
Even the metal mutt Toby was seen to be bopping along to 'Worlds Colliding'.
Wolf hammers out his usual excellence, Mark roars his indignation but there are two key elements that take this to the next level. One is Andy Sneap's production, capturing the live essence of Accept on this album. The other is Peter, Christopher and Uwe. The trio manage that almost mystical balance between tightness and the feeling of a rhythm section packed with loose groove.
Of the songs on display here it is almost impossible to pick one that should be selected head and shoulders above all others, but 'Koolaid' (re-visiting the same topic as Manowar's Guyana: Cult of the Damned) and the closer 'Race to Extinction' would just edge it, with a tiny lyrical misstep on 'Analog Man' the only reason it isn't there.
Yes, some of the topics touched on aren't the most profound; they're not preaching to the as yet unconverted with environmental themes and horror at the world, but each is an important statement in its own right.
We all watch the 'Rise of Chaos' in a world where distorted hypernormalisation is the pattern set by 'leaders' but crank this fucker up, raise a single finger to dystopia and bang yer fuckin' head.
Review by Jonathan Traynor
Rise of Chaos is out on Nuclear Blast on August 4th