AlbumsNovember 29, 20117,879 views

Hammerfall Chapter V: Unbent, Unbowed, Unbroken

Chapter V: Unbent, Unbowed, Unbroken
01. Secrets 02. Blood Bound 03. Fury of the Wild 04. Hammer of Justice 05. Never, Ever 06. Born To Rule 07. The Templar Flame 08. Imperial 09. Take The Black 10. Kings of the 21st Century
2005 Nuclear Blast Records
Our score 8

by Cory

While metal has evolved and transformed in the last twenty years into more genres than one would even care to count, there are some musicians and fans whose true love is still one of its earliest incarnations: power metal. While bands like Iron Maiden, Helloween and Manowar and King Diamond are still going strong after two decades, a few younger groups have emerged worthy to stand amongst their esteemed ranks. Among the most successful and accomplished of these groups is Hammerfall, a group who have been largely ignored or overlooked in the US for most of their twelve year career. Originally formed in 1993 by Oscar Dronjak and Jesper Strombland (of In Flames fame), the group has seen ups and downs and lineup changes, but has never strayed from their trademark brand of thrashy dual guitars, powerfully uncomplicated rhythm lines and soaring vocals. Quite frankly, Joacim Cans is one of the greatest clean metal vocalists around, both live and on record. Also, where a band like 3 Inches of Blood, although equally talented, are often humorously over-the-top, Hammerfall's sincerity and theatrical presentation should appeal to all genuine fans of authentic power metal. As far as Chapter V is concerned, while not as immediately catchy and impressive as 2000's Renegade, I found it more enjoyable overall than the group's last disc, Crimson Thunder. It starts off with a pair of the group's strongest compositions, "Secrets" and the disc's first single "Blood Bound." After that, the disc has its share of rockers, a couple of ballads and an instrumental before finally wrapping up with "Knights of the 21st Century," a song so unabashedly epic, the first few minutes merely serve as an introduction to its story, as Joacim and some sort of monster trade lines about "the prophecy." Once the song truly begins, the force of the music definitely justifies the extended explanation. Lyrically, most of Hammerfall's material takes its cues from groups like Dio and Helloween (whom the band has toured and recorded with respectively) with lines like "Charge into the vein / Like a needle for the pain / Thunderbolts clashing down / A new sound across the land." Admittedly, there's a certain cheese factor to lyrics like these, but Hammerfall, like most of their great metal forefathers, have a way of making these words come to life. Hey, maybe this sounds like Dungeons & Dragons Nerd Metal to you, and maybe it is, but its also infectiously catchy and undeniably powerful. Bottom Line: In the last few years, Hammerfall have become one of my favorite bands. They are extremely talented musicians as well as songwriters and their millions of loyal fans worldwide are the proof. For the uninitiated, I might suggest tracking down a copy of Renegade first, as that is undoubtedly their best work, but Chapter V is definitely another in a string of excellent releases from these kings of metal. I would urge anyone who appreciates classic metal with great melodies to check it out.


Post Comment
AzzArea_ 5/30/2005 11:39:34 AM

first post

livinineXile_ 5/30/2005 12:07:12 PM

i havent heard the cd, but the promotion for it included hammerfall condoms. i have not used them for fear of what it would do to my penis and girlfriend.

xBrendanx_ 5/30/2005 1:14:03 PM

bow down, bitches

wolfpack_ 5/30/2005 3:33:49 PM

what the f*ck is this crap...shitty band,shitty album

Fancy Feast_ 5/30/2005 3:37:09 PM

Why would a band with the talent to do something unique and interesting waste it playing music for 35-year old nerds?

kenwregget_ 5/30/2005 4:09:29 PM

I got two press kits for this album, which means two condoms...I should put it on Ebay. Decent album but there's much better power metal right now, like the new Demons & Wizards.

arnold rimmer_ 5/30/2005 4:52:59 PM

I couldnt rate any power metal album above 5/10 it all sounds so cheesy to me but I can appreciate some people get aroused by it.

Ohhhhh_ 5/30/2005 5:26:31 PM

Hammerfall owns.

kingben_ 5/30/2005 7:05:03 PM

hammerfall is f*cking retarded

perfectpatientADHDkid_ 5/30/2005 7:16:32 PM

cory....stop reviewing complete and utter shit for christ's sake!

thegoddamnawesome_ 5/31/2005 8:17:24 AM

hammerfall has always and will always f*cking rule.

PalmerLCC_ 5/31/2005 12:20:18 PM

I now know why most of corys reviews suck, his favorite band is hammerfall. This shit is repetitive garbage meant only to invoke the spirits of hobbits and elven online reviewers.

PalmerLCC_ 5/31/2005 12:22:17 PM

Look at the cover art for shrists sake HAAHHAHAHAHAHAAHAH what the f*ck

kenwregget_ 5/31/2005 1:39:37 PM

Hey palmer look at your dad's miniature c-ck HAHAHAHAHAHA what the f*ck is that.

PalmerLCC_ 5/31/2005 2:28:41 PM

Good enough to get me in this world so good for him you jack off go play with your Kid Sister doll perv and stop looking at my dads dick. HAMMERFALL RULES ,molly hatchet forever!!

Nick_ 5/31/2005 9:47:09 PM

Good review Cory! Hamerfall is siiiiiiiickkkkk! All you trendy hc kids get the hell outta here and go back to listening to Bury Your Dead or Throwdown because this shit is too much for your pathetic brains to handle and wont win you any scene points. By the way Cory, my favourite stuff of theirs is the 'Legacy Of Kings' album.

Selvin_ 6/1/2005 12:32:37 AM

Good review, but 8/10 is too high styll.

dutchstep_ 6/1/2005 2:09:46 AM

decent review, cory. hammerfall is back!

PalmerLCC_ 6/1/2005 1:28:16 PM

By the way nick your a goo guzzler. There is no originality in this cd AT ALL. From the cover to the song names its on big lump of cheese. you cant take lyrics like this seriosuly because if you do your admitting that dragons exist. 4/10 just for song stucture as nice as I'll get.

TheWood_ 6/1/2005 2:09:09 PM

These dudes are hilarious. If you take them too seriously, you might miss the point.

Mark_ 6/5/2005 5:46:00 PM

Most of you take this way too seriously.

joehardcore_ 6/6/2005 6:40:55 AM

MANOWAR are the only true Kings of Metal.

wolfpack_ 6/8/2005 1:30:13 AM

gay shit