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Firewolfe - "Firewolfe" (CD)

Firewolfe - "Firewolfe" CD cover image

"Firewolfe" track listing:

1. Air Attack
2. Unholy
3. Firewolfe
4. Armed Forces
5. Back From Hell
6. Wicked Words
7. Ice Wizard (Instrumental)
8. Tempter
9. M.O.D.
10. Feel The Thunder

Reviewed by on September 26, 2011

"Are there many memorable riffs and melodies on Firewolfe's self-titled debut? No, but some expert shredding and soaring vocals go a fair distance toward papering over their absence."

Firewolfe's self-titled debut is melodic metal that's long on technical skill, and sometimes a bit short on songwriting. Then again, with guitarists who can shred as mightily as these guys can, maybe riffs are overrated.

The disc is dedicated to the men and woman of the United States military, and tracks like "Air Attack" and "Armed Forces," which rely more on riffing strike mightily. Singer David Fefolt (also of Forgotten Realm and Angels of Babylon) is especially potent on these two tracks, as well as the slightly slower "Wicked Words."

The double-ax attack of Nick Layton and Paul Kleff makes for some powerful, power-metal-style solos on tracks like "Back From Hell," "M.O.D." and especially the instrumental "Ice Wizards." That said, the riffs on tracks like "Firewolfe," "Back From Hell" and "Feel The Thunder" feel a little weak (never mind the wholesale theft of the "Black Sabbath" riff for the opening of "Tempter").

The band also falls victim to lyrical cliches on tracks like "Unholy" and especially "M.O.D." (in which we "march to the beat of a different drummer" and "join the rock and roll army." Then again, you'll probably still be pumping your fist in the air to the admittedly silly chorus that tells us its "metal or die till you die."

Are there many memorable riffs and melodies on Firewolfe's self-titled debut? No, but some expert shredding and soaring vocals go a fair distance toward papering over their absence.

Highs: "Air Attack," "Armed Forces" and "Ice Wizards."

Lows: Weak riffs and lyrics

Bottom line: The band's technical skills go a long way toward making up for a lack of memorable melodies.

Rated 3.0 out of 5 skulls
3.0 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)