Battle Beast – ‘No More Hollywood Endings’ album review

Band: Battle Beast
Album: No More Hollywood Endings
Release Date:  22nd March, 2019
Label: Nuclear Blast

 

 

Review by Sean 

Few things in life are as enjoyable as a power metal album, and fewer still power metal albums that manage to be epic AND cheesy at the same time.
With their latest album, ‘No More Hollywood Endings’, Battle Beast have done just that.

The albums twists and turns through powerful anthems to sing out loud at full volume, power metal cheese that you can’t help but love, and those addictive guitar/synth solo combos, mixed with the rare slower track. There’s a fire that keeps metal burning bright.
If you love your Sabaton, you’ll love these, as the music is similar in style to their own brand of power metal. Bombastic, punctuating, with a tinge of classical in there.
None more so than the title track itself, which really does show just how closely related metal is to classical music. As always with Battle Beast, Noora’s unique and powerful voice is one of the standout parts of this album, particularly on tracks like the title track, where she shows you can be commanding and show emotion as well.

It’s one of the best traits of the band that the majority of the songs are memorable in multiple moments; a melody here, a riff there, some of Noora’s lyrics. Especially on one of my favourite
tracks, ‘Eden’. This track is the band in full Nightwish mode, but, thankfully, that doesn’t last.
I’m not going track-by-track I swear, but the next one, ‘Unfairy Tales’, is another highlight. From it’s odd intro (listen to it), to its chorus that speaks out, the guitar work, the well woven synth…
This one has it all in spades.

Ah, bugger it, there’s too much to mention to gloss over stuff. Next track up, ‘Endless Summer’ is another interesting one. Almost AOR sounding, it’s got a Brother Firetribe sound to it, and
honestly, again, I really like it. It speaks to that very rarely seen part of me that likes to be happy, and I can imagine myself having this on a “Summer” playlist, cold beer in hand, sat in a garden
with some mates. Bring on July.

‘The Hero’ also has an 80s sound to it, but it packs more of a punch, bringing back the metal, complete with a rising scream from Noora before she powers into the main verse. It definitely
has montage written all over it, but that makes it cool, even if I could hear a little bit of ‘Maniac’ in the keys in the chorus. Seriously, have a listen. Once heard, cannot be unheard. Thank me
later.

Probably my favourite riff on the album kicks off ‘Piece of Me’, which is a balls out hard as it can be rock song. Not one of my favourites on the album, but I can see a lot of people giving it a lot of playtime.
The same could be said of ‘I Wish’. Not a favourite, but still good in its own way. It’s a more sad song than the rest on here, and perhaps that’s why. It brings everything down for me, a bit too
much, and that’s not why I listen to Battle Beast. Shout out to the mention of bourbon in the song though. Instant plus for me.

After that last one, we all need a kick up the arse to get us back into gear, and the anthemic ‘Raise Your Fists’ is just the ticket. It has a slow building intro that stirs and motivates, and also
has a key part in giving you the melody you’ll be singing throughout. Handy when bands do that. Makes a song so much more catchy, so it stays in your head. This one might well be my favourite
on the album, just for how rousing it is.
‘The Golden Horde’ is next and is another odd one. It has a weirdly dance music sort of beat to it, and the synth and vocal style in the intro don’t help that. I still really like it though. Dance and
metal should mix more often, in my opinion. But don’t worry, it’s most assuredly a speedy power metal track, through and through. Honest.

It’s amazing how many bands have a song called ‘World on Fire’ and yet they manage to make them all so different. This one sees a more melodic side to Noora, and a more hopeful style of
lyric. I like it, as with pretty much all of this album.
Another one to slow the pace, ‘Bent and Broken’ is one I actually like, despite its slower pace. Yes it’s not fast paced, rocking, or furious, but sometimes a slow song is a good thing.
Finally we have ‘My Last Dream’, taking us out on a speedier note. I’ll not say much, just that you gotta hear this track. I will also say the Trump sampling was hilarious.

All in all a fucking great album from a fucking great band. Perfect? Nah, but this is gonna be one of the albums of the year. It certainly is for me so far.

9 out of 10

 

Track Listing:

01. Unbroken
02. No More Hollywood Endings
03. Eden
04. Unfairy Tales
05. Endless Summer
06. The Hero
07. Piece of Me
08. I Wish
09. Raise Your Fists
10. The Golden Horde
11. World on Fire