Royal Hunt - XIII - Devil's Dozen review



Reviewer:
9.0

42 users:
7.52
Band: Royal Hunt
Album: XIII - Devil's Dozen
Release date: August 2015


01. So Right So Wrong
02. May You Never (Walk Alone)
03. Heart On A Platter
04. A Tear In The Rain
05. Until The Day
06. Riches To Rags
07. Way Too Late
08. How Do You Know [bonus]


Progressive? Neo-classical? Power? Rock? Symphonic? It has always been hard to describe the style of Royal Hunt and XIII - Devil's Dozen does not make this task any easier. It is an album packed with so many elements from a wide range of genres that fit together so well to create 8 tracks that manage to sound contemporary and classic at the same time.

XIII - Devil's Dozen has more than enough to please any fan of melodic music; massive choruses, catchy melodies throughout and excellent performances from the entire band. D. C. Cooper is a quality vocalist and seems to be able to change style on a whim and is never over the top. His performance is impressive throughout and really stands out on "May You Never (Walk Alone)" where the song begins as a ballad before suddenly exploding into an up tempo anthem with soaring vocals and an outstanding use of backing vocals. It is the fastest track on the album and also shows a clear demonstration of the quality in songwriting found on this album.

It would be unfair to only praise Cooper individually as the album really comes alive with the work of Andre Andersen who really shines on XIII - Devil's Dozen. Yes, there are keyboard solos, but what impressed me most was the tasteful symphonic sound that is ever-present. From the blues style "Heart On A Platter" to the folkish "Riches To Rags", his keyboard work simply blew me away. This guy really knows how to mix heavy metal with classical elements and his songwriting and production definitely are two of the main reasons that XIII - Devil's Dozen sounds so different from the work of other symphonic power metal bands. "A Tear In The Rain" and "Riches To Rags" have keyboards throughout that reminded me of Nightwish if the keyboards didn't sound like a Tim Burton inspired Disney theme park ride. "Until The Day" is a great ballad with major classical influences; but again, it is surprising enough and features some great guitar work as well as those great backing vocals I mentioned previously.

The main negative comes in the form of bonus the track "How Do You Know"; a song that just sounds out of place when listed alongside the 7 other tracks. The rest of the album has intricate songs that tend to last 6 or 7 minutes. "How Do You Know" just seems like a short, anticlimactic end to the album. Of course it is considered a bonus track, but it is there and should be judged as a standard one. Fortunately this track is the only blip in an otherwise quality album. I would have liked maybe one more fast song, but it's pretty hard to complain when the other ones are so good.

With their 13th studio album, Royal Hunt continues to be imaginative and very creative. It would be unfair to simply label them as symphonic power metal. There is so much more going on here and fans of any variety of hard rock or melodic metal music should find something that appeals to them.


Rating breakdown
Performance: 10
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 9
Production: 8


 



Written on 17.08.2015 by Try not to my review score personally.


Comments

Comments: 6   Visited by: 219 users
17.08.2015 - 20:55
Bad English
Masterchief
Song 8 is bonus track?
----
Life is to short for LOVE, there is many great things to do online !!!

Stormtroopers of Death - ''Speak English or Die''

I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
Loading...
17.08.2015 - 21:29
Belegûr
Arise In Might!
Written by Bad English on 17.08.2015 at 20:55

Song 8 is bonus track?


Yup!
Loading...
17.08.2015 - 21:33
Bad English
Masterchief
Written by Belegûr on 17.08.2015 at 21:29

Written by Bad English on 17.08.2015 at 20:55

Song 8 is bonus track?


Yup!


then feel free fix it into album
----
Life is to short for LOVE, there is many great things to do online !!!

Stormtroopers of Death - ''Speak English or Die''

I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
Loading...
17.08.2015 - 21:35
Belegûr
Arise In Might!
Written by Bad English on 17.08.2015 at 21:33

Written by Belegûr on 17.08.2015 at 21:29

Written by Bad English on 17.08.2015 at 20:55

Song 8 is bonus track?


Yup!


then feel free fix it into album


Nah, I'm alright
Loading...
17.08.2015 - 22:21
Susan
Smeghead
Well, this certainly piqued my interest! I'm definitely a huge power metal fan, but haven't been listening to much lately, in favor of other styles. I'm certainly tempted by the "massive choruses" and "tasteful symphonic sound," as well as a band that doesn't precisely fit the genre. All positives, especially when combined. This one is on my list Thank you!
----
"A life all mine
Is what I choose
At the end of my days"
--The Gathering "A Life All Mine" from Souvenirs
Loading...
17.08.2015 - 22:44
Belegûr
Arise In Might!
Written by Susan on 17.08.2015 at 22:21

Well, this certainly piqued my interest! I'm definitely a huge power metal fan, but haven't been listening to much lately, in favor of other styles. I'm certainly tempted by the "massive choruses" and "tasteful symphonic sound," as well as a band that doesn't precisely fit the genre. All positives, especially when combined. This one is on my list Thank you!


Hope it doesn't disappoint . I thoroughly enjoyed it and have been listening to it regularly for weeks .
Loading...

Hits total: 5533 | This month: 35