Neptune – Northern Steel

Neptune
Northern Steel
Melodic Passion Records
November 6,2020
43:43

The Swedish metal band Neptune has a long history behind it. The band was officially founded in 1980. Before that she had been traveling under the name Warriens for a year. But already after seven years the band broke up. During this time only four demos were released. The band only found their way back together thirty years later. After two singles, the EP “The Last Flight Of The Rafven” was released in 2019. And now the long awaited debut album “Northern Steel” is in the starting blocks. For this, the band has invited illustrious guest musicians.

“The Prophecy” is an intro with teeth. Thunderstorms, then the drums kick in. There are also Nordic battle chants. Like a column on the battlefield, the “Viking Stone” rolls everything down. What a mid-pace stomper. One would like to join the column right away. While longtime band member Anders Olsson is knocking out hard riffs, guest musician Euge Valovirta (Cyhra, Red Wolf) shines with a guitar solo. With “Last Man Standing” (not to be confused with the hit of the same name by Hammerfall) a real neckbreaker can be heard. Stephen Carlson (Brotthogg, Tales) has his guest appearance here. And again, the tempo is varied. Hammerfall guitarist Pontus Norgren recorded a solo on the majestically striding “Fallen Nations”. The title track “Northern Steel” lives up to its name. The finest Swedish Steel is forged here. It continues in a varied way. Sometimes hymn (“Black Rain”, “Ruler Of The Sea”), sometimes straight forward rocking. (“Run For Your Life”, “Seriously”). Also, a ballad (“Land Of Northern”) should not be missing. At the end it becomes folkloric. “Vanheim” is (almost) completely instrumental. In this semi-acoustic ballad, the acoustic guitar and the synth strings are only underlaid with vocalises that sound like elven singing. And the song ends with spoken words.

With “Fallen Nations” Neptune have released an all-round successful debut album. The press text even mentions NWOSHM (New Wave of Swedish Heavy Metal). Even if I don’t think much of such monstrous words, the sound is aptly described here. If Sabaton is too warlike or Hammerfall too commercial, Amaranthe too loud and trendy, you should definitely listen to this album from Sweden.

Neptune – Fallen Nations: https://youtu.be/lko3uLlgCEQ

Lineup:

Row Alex – Lead & backing vocals
Anders Olsson – Guitars
Tosh Ason – Bass & backing vocals
Johan Rosth – Keyboards
Jonas Wikström – Drums

Special guests:

Pontus Norgren – Guitar solo on Fallen Nations
Euge Valovirta – Guitar solo on Viking Stone and Black Rain
Stephen Carlson – Guitar solo on Last Man Standing

Track list:

  • The Prophecy
  • Viking Stone
  • Last Man Standing
  • Fallen Nations
  • Angels
  • Northern Steel
  • Black Rain
  • Run For Your Life
  • Land Of Northern
  • Seriously
  • Ruler Of The Sea
  • Vanheim
Rating
  • 9/10
    Album - 9/10
  • 8/10
    Cover Art - 8/10
  • 9/10
    Song Writing - 9/10
8.7/10
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