It is the late 1970s and a new sound is born into the metal genre. It’s name inspired by it’s style, and that name is Power Fast forward to the 80s and one name, one band, did stand out… Helloween. They redefined Power Metal and helped shape it to what we know today.
The year is now 2012. The world did not end in December and you can be thankful of that as Helloween stand tall with their newest release ‘Straight Out Of Hell’. As I start the very first track all I can think of is, this has the promise of a great album. ‘Nabataea’ is a strong opening track about the ancient peoples of North Arabia circa AD 37. This is not the first time that Helloween have delved into history for song inspiration and I suspect this is not the last time either. The first track comes to an end and leaves you thirsting for more and track 2 ‘World Of War’ delivers. I can’t help but think of how Helloween have developed since their start. Going from strength to strength in my eyes and this album takes that to a whole new level. Every single track has it’s own charm and merits. ‘Live Now’ is going to be an awesome song in Helloween’s live repertoire.
A limited edition version of the album has an alternate version of the 5th track ‘Burning Sun’, featuring a Hammond organ and was dedicated to the memory of Deep Purple organist Jon Lord.
The title track of the album is powerhouse anthem that I suspect we will see in the future with it’s own video as it is one of the strongest songs here, but then ‘Straight Out Of Hell’ isn’t short of strong songs. I did wonder at the choice of name for track number 10; ‘Asshole’ but Helloween have never been one to shy away from seemingly absurd title names for songs as you might recall ‘Pink Bubbles Go Ape’, ‘Heavy Metal Hamsters’ and ‘Shit And Lobster’.
The album continues the concept the band have been working with for the past 4 releases. 2005’s ‘Keeper Of The Seven Keys – The Legacy’ introduced us to the 1st album based on the concepts of heaven, hell and Catholic religious themes. These concepts were carried through to 2007’s ‘Gambling With The Devil’ & 2010’s ‘7 Sinners’.
The whole album is a delight to listen to and if you’ve ever been curious as what this whole Power Metal thing is; this album provides a great little place to jump in and fall instantly in love with the sound.