Fields of Blood
FFO: Running Wild, Accept, Rage, Saxon, Primal Fear, U.D.O.
When it comes to good, old fashioned heavy metal about history and war, Grave Digger are out on their own and although the German band have been experimenting over the last few albums, Grave Digger are back with their latest album ‘Fields of Blood’.
This album puts an end to Grave Digger’s experimentations with a more contemporary heavy metal sound. Whilst there is nothing overtly wrong with ‘Healed By Metal’ or ‘The Living Dead’ and any band would be proud to boast them within their discography, they are just not what Grave Digger are about. ‘Fields of Blood’ blatantly ignores the last two releases and picks up almost exactly where the sound of ‘Return of the Reaper’ left off and can even be considered the spiritual successor to ‘The Clans Will Rise Again’ with the focus once more upon Scottish history. It might seem odd that a bunch of Germans would deliver a concept album around the Clans of the Scottish Highlands, but from the Medieval period right through to the aftermath of the Battle of Culloden, ‘Fields of Blood’ does this history justice and whilst it may at times romanticise the past, it certainly plays into the heavy power metal portrayed by the band. Tracks such as the rousing ‘Freedom’ or the thought provoking ‘Barbarian’ and the sing-a-long nature of ‘Lions of the Sea’ show that Chris Boltendahl is back in his comfort zone and firing on all cylinders; in fact, this is such a comfortable record for Grave Digger that it is easily the best album since ‘Rheingold’.
‘Fields of Blood’ muddily marches to the top of the hill and unfurls the Grave Digger flag once more to all to behold, it is Grave Digger back on top form and any fan of European heavy metal should play those pipes and cry out loud!