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Black Moor - "The Conquering" (CD)

Black Moor - "The Conquering" CD cover image

"The Conquering" track listing:

1. Beyond Hell
2. The Conquering
3. Warshark
4. The Human Disease
5. Death To The False Emperor
6. Fiend
7. The Blood Moor
8. Red Blood, Cold Steel
9. Acid Biker
10. Breath Of The Dying

Reviewed by on April 21, 2011

"Is Black Moor's 'The Conquering' a particularly inventive take on the classic metal genre? No, but the band certainly gets the sound and mood right — and that counts for a lot."

Those who love their metal in the Maiden mold are going to find plenty to enjoy on Black Moor's "The Conquering." The disc harkens back to the early-'80s days of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal and the birth of thrash.

The dual-guitar intro to "Beyond Hell" by Eric Hanlin and Nick Jones immediately sets the mood, with its early Iron Maiden feel, complete with Rob Nickerson's galloping in the background. Sure, Hanlin's vocals are more Paul Di'Anno than Bruce Dickinson, but that's part of the charm.

There's no doubt that the guitars are the star here, with superb solos and interludes on tracks like "Death To The False Emperor" and "The Conquering." "The Conquering," in particular, stands out, with a "Kill 'Em All"-era Metallica feel, complete with a more-than-passable young Hetfield-style vocal from Hanlin. Other standout tracks include "Red Blood, Cold Steel," with its speedy thrash interlude, and "Breath Of The Dying," which has an excellent slow-burn intro and a haunting fade at the end.

On the downside, other than the piano intro to "The Human Disease" and the brief bit of acoustic guitar on "Fiend," there are no surprises to be had here after the first few tracks. Add that to some sequencing issues ("The Blood Moor" and the similar-sounding "Red Blood, Cold Steel" being parked right next to each other, for instance), and things start sounding quite repetitive by the end of the album.

Is Black Moor's "The Conquering" a particularly inventive take on the classic metal genre? No, but the band certainly gets the sound and mood right — and that counts for a lot.

Highs: "Beyond Hell," "The Conquering" and "Red Blood, Cold Steel"

Lows: Things start feeling a bit repetitive after the first few tracks.

Bottom line: A well-played, if slightly unoriginal take on the classic metal style.

Rated 3 out of 5 skulls
3 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)