Classic metal act Grave Digger have steeped themselves in their own lore for the release of Return of the Reaper, which came out on July 11th. With a history going back to the 1980’s and a noticeable set of early 90’s releases, it’s always good to see bands lasting in the long term.
Reminiscent of Painkiller-era Judas Priest, Return of the Reaper is a hell of an album. Crunching, distorted guitars churn out a rhythm like a steam train with sawblades for wheels, occasionally screaming off into whammy-bar assisted solos. Vocals are as much chanted as they are sung. Drums pound quickly enough to generate the envy of a thrash act, yet the overall sound is very much “classic metal”.
I don’t know if I’m now going to get hunted down and slaughtered, but – in 2014 at least – Grave Digger have outdone Halford and co.
If I die, bury me with this CD.