Manowar - Hail To England review



Reviewer:
8.5

359 users:
8.35
Band: Manowar
Album: Hail To England
Release date: 1984


01. Blood Of My Enemies
02. Each Dawn I Die
03. Kill With Power
04. Hail To England
05. Army Of The Immortals
06. Black Arrows
07. Bridge Of Death


Once in a while I'll put on an old album I haven't heard in a long time for nostalgia purposes rather than wanting to hear something of actual quality. Manowar's Hail To England, which happens to be one of my first metal albums, seemed to fit that bill perfectly. After all, I do remember having a great time at their live show when they came down here with Rhapsody (either a sign of the apocalypse, or a dream come true depending on perspective). Manowar actually acquired their "cheese cred" after their Hail To England/Sign Of The Hammer releases. Don't get me wrong though, there's plenty of lame moments on this album. All of it just happens to be appropriate for the time and context without aging too badly. So it's not as bad as one might expect.

Actually, I think I'll just come out and say it. Quite frankly, Hail To England is a solid piece of traditional metal with a healthy amount of epic tinge around some of the songs (a lot of people pointed to some of early Manowar as an influence when Bathory released "Hammerheart"). The opener "Blood Of My Enemies" is an excellent example of this, and is one of the best, if not the best song Joey DeMaio has written. Choirs are used in the background for many of the songs here, a trait that has stayed with the band throughout their long career, even if it has gotten a lot less subtle over time.

A great career decision on Manowar's part was to cut down those slow, plodding songs that never seem to end that appeared on "Into Glory Ride" in half while being pretty catchy and anthemic. While being just above the 30 minute mark makes Hail To England pretty easy to digest and multiple listenings more common. The only time your skip button should even come into play is on the ridiculous bass solo "Black Arrows Of Death", which happens to be the worst of these Manowar has ever put out (that's saying a lot).

Did I mention the fan dedicated songs such as the title track and "Army Of Immortals" are tastefully written and fun to sing along to? Well, they are. Except for the part in "Army Of Immortals" where the line "Metal makes you stronger...longer" is repeated for awhile. The closing epic track "Bridge Of Death" shows the band must have a major hard-on for Satan himself as the line "Satan don't forsake me. I wait for you take me..." is uttered. Some cringing moments aside, this is a classic album in every sense that gets better with each listen. Their next offering "Sign Of The Hammer" makes a great companion disc if you'd like to hear more of the same, which except for the title track, was made at the same recording session.


Rating breakdown
Performance: 8
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 9
Production: 7

Written by Joey Jo Jo | 14.07.2007


 


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

Staff review by
BitterCOld
Rating:
5.5
The leather and loincloth clad Manowar need no introduction to anyone vaguely into metal. They are perhaps amongst the most polarizing bands in metal - people either love them or hate them, with few in the middle.

With "Hail to England" purported to be their high-water mark, I figured this would be the best place to start. I cast aside preconceived notions, burnt the loincloth images from my mind, and inserted them into iPod rotation…

Read more ››
published 21.04.2009 | Comments (15)


Comments

Comments: 11   Visited by: 83 users
15.07.2007 - 15:21
Katatronik
Angel of Lust
Not my favourite Manowar album, though I agree with the production and performance rating... IMO, songwriting and originality are a bit lower...
----

"The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear,
and the oldest and strongest kind of fear is fear of the unknown."
Howard Phillips Lovecraft
Loading...
15.07.2007 - 15:25
Marcel Hubregtse
Grumpy Old Fuck
This is by far Manowar's best album. A true classic. I would rate it 9.5 I think.
After this album Manowar only went downhill to hit rock bottom with this year's release.
----
Member of the true crusade against European Flower Metal

Yesterday is dead and gone, tomorrow is out of sight
Dawn Crosby (r.i.p.)
05.04.1963 - 15.12.1996

Loading...
15.07.2007 - 21:05
Joey Jo Jo
Piece of shit
I remember when I first heard it, I couldn't get it out of my CD player, now that I heard it again, I can't stop hearing it.

Ya, I guess I should have raised the rating a bit, but that bass solo is one of the worst things I have ever heard. Anyway, I don't really care about ratings.
----
"If there hadn't been women we'd still be squatting in a cave eating raw meat, because we made civilization in order to impress our girl friends. And they tolerated it and let us go ahead and play with our toys."
- Orson Welles
Loading...
06.10.2007 - 03:23
ThunderAxe1989
Irreligious
What can I say, very kick ass record!! Totally classic! I love the first 2 tracks the best. Oh and "Army Of The Immortals" is so flattering as it's a thank you to all Manowar fans (though i wasn't born yet lol) .
Loading...
06.10.2007 - 11:34
Ellrohir
Heaven Knight
somehow i dont like a single song from this album (i am more likely in Manowar´s more recent stuff more than in these half 80thies)...but maybe i just need to listen the album several more times to find some highlights i will enjoy
----
So behold the flight of the sapphire dragon
soaring through the skies once again


Loading...
19.12.2007 - 02:15
va5ilis
Account deleted
The first 3 tracks are killers as well as the last one.
Kill with power....DIE DIE!!!
Loading...
28.04.2008 - 06:21
Marcus
Doit Like Bernie
It's a great album, but the solo on Black Arrows (I think) is the worst solo ever played in the history of metal.
Loading...
30.09.2008 - 15:52
Valentin B
Iconoclast
probably one of manowar's most varied and inspired albums, though i like Kings Of Metal and Warriors better.

Army Of Immortals and Blood of My Enemies (STOMP! STOMP!) are 2 of the best all time Manowar songs.
----
Sing me a song, you're a singer
Do me a wrong, you're a bringer of evil.
Loading...
11.02.2009 - 22:35
Valentin B
Iconoclast
Also it's weird, why does Hail to England have a different sound from Sign of the Hammer if they were made at the same recording session?
----
Sing me a song, you're a singer
Do me a wrong, you're a bringer of evil.
Loading...
11.02.2009 - 22:42
Marcel Hubregtse
Grumpy Old Fuck
Written by Valentin B on 11.02.2009 at 22:35

Also it's weird, why does Hail to England have a different sound from Sign of the Hammer if they were made at the same recording session?


I don't know how this myth came to be, but both were recorded at different recroding sessions. Manowar only started recording Sign Of The Hammer AFTER they had switched to 10 Records.
----
Member of the true crusade against European Flower Metal

Yesterday is dead and gone, tomorrow is out of sight
Dawn Crosby (r.i.p.)
05.04.1963 - 15.12.1996

Loading...
13.02.2009 - 16:06
Aaron_W
Easily Manowar's best album and one of the best examples of pure heavy metal ever recorded.
Loading...

Hits total: 5809 | This month: 37