HJALLARHORN - Iron Clad Soldiers

Hjallarhorn - Iron Clad Soldiers

9 songs
50:00 minutes
***** **
Pure Steel


Not to be confused with Italian Viking metal band Gjallarhorn, Hjallarhorn are a traditional heavy metal band from Norway who started out already in the early Nineties, then broke up without having released any recording. In the mid-2000’s, they gave it another shot, released a couple of demos and can now finally show off their debut album Iron Clad Soldiers. The album title hints already at what to expect. The Oslo based quartet plays a classic, dare I say old-fashioned? – hybrid of NWOBHM and very early Metallica. This sounds great on the opener Battle Of Repulsion and the following title track, where we get fast and sizzling metal that could as well have come out a quarter century earlier.

Hjallarhorn are an ambitious band that doesn’t shy away from longer tracks, but it’s their shorter material that I prefer. The nine minute long Eye Of The Storm for instance seems stretched with ideas that do not always fit. The Changeling also has a slower part that feels awkward in the otherwise charming old-school metal sound. Fortunately the good songs predominate, and even though the Norwegians will never reach the primal magic of their pioneering influences, they still manage to craft an authentic tribute to heavy metal from a time when things were still less complicated.

Fans of early British heavy metal who don’t mind a certain Kill ‘em All attitude should want to check out this unpolished piece of music. Hjallarhorn love early heavy metal, and have consequently based their chosen sound on the early Eighties. Iron Clad Soldiers may not be an original piece of art, but will certainly make for entertaining fifty minutes of sonic time travelling.

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