New Music Review: PRIMAL FEAR ‘Rulebreaker’

PRIMAL FEAR 'Rulebreaker' - Cover Photo

Rating: 9 / 10 Stars

Rating: 9 out of 10.

REVIEW – The next time someone says to me, “Rock and metal is dead”, and after I mentally punch them in the throat, I’m going to play this album for them so they can witness first-hand that it is most-definitely NOT dead. Germany’s PRIMAL FEAR has stormed the gates with their 11th studio album in 18 years called “Rulebreaker”, released January 29, 2016 on Frontiers Records.  The Deutsch six-piece band continue their metallic reign by sticking to the formula, and not fixing what isn’t broken.

Ralf Sheepers (ex-Gamma Ray) maintains his role as frontman and lead vocalist, just as he has since 1998, when they released their self-titled debut album, and can still belt it out.  Awesomely sounding a lot like Rob Halford, with a little Dave Mustaine on certain parts, he doesn’t disappoint.  Bassist Mat Sinner, the other founding member of PRIMAL FEAR, is still present delivering his trademark thunderous bass, guitarist Tom Naumann, who was a founding member, and was in and out of the band as a hired gun since 2003, has now re-joined the band full-time, one-time live only guitarist Alex Beyrodt maintains his full-time status, Magnus Karlsson rounds out the guitarist slot and also plays keyboards when needed, and newest member, ex-U.D.O. drummer, Francisco Jovino, provides the rhythmic pounding needed to complete this lineup of extraordinary musicians doing what they do best.

Seriously heavy power-metal/traditional metal is the key to PRIMAL FEAR’s appeal. Anthemic sing along choruses with shouting, gang backing vocals also contribute to an already great album. The tracks are sequenced well, mixing in their slower tempos with the faster ones, and as cool as the slower numbers can be, we all know that the band shines on their faster songs. Produced by Sinner, he stays the course as his band’s producer, supplying that special touch that gives Primal Fear their distinct sound. In a nutshell, if you loved what PRIMAL FEAR did before this album like I did, you’ll love this one too. Stay metal, boys.

Vocals: Ralf Sheepers
Bass: Mat Sinner
Guitarist: Tom NaumannGuitarist: Alex Beyrodt
Guitarist/Keyboardist: Magnus Karlsson
Drummer: Francisco Jovino

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