Let’s get this out of the way at the very start: Volbeat are one of my favourite bands at the moment. The mix of Hard Rock, Metal, Rockabilly and unmistakable vocals of Michael Poulson (the heavy metal Elvis) is what sets this Danish band apart from the crowd. Since the 2013 release of Volbeat’s fifth and brilliant album, Outlaw Gentleman and Shady Ladies, the first with new guitarist and former Anthrax member Rob Caggiano, I have been waiting to hear if the sixth lives up to my expectations.
I shouldn’t have worried.
On the 3rd of June Volbeat released their latest album via Republic Records, Seal the Deal & Let’s Boogie and despite some line-up changes in recent years this is the Volbeat we know and love. There is however a slightly different feel to this album, with some tracks shining far above the others and a mix of old school Volbeat alongside a desire to open up to a new audience. Don’t let that put you off though because this album is a clearly intended to be enjoyed loud, with hands in the air and side by side with the rest of the Rock Tribe.
This 13 track punch-in-the-face of an album kicks off in style with “The Devil’s Bleeding Heart” which, with its thumping bass drum and catchy opening guitar riff, is guaranteed to get the whole crowd jumping. This is followed up with the slower paced “Marie Laveau” which, although it feels like a revisiting of “Lola Montez” from their previous album, is certainly not unwelcome.
The crowning glory of this album is “Seal the Deal” featuring fast guitars, sing-along lyrics and at 2:25 into the song a blistering guitar solo with primeval undertones. I played this track four times in a row at full volume before continuing with the rest of the album.
To bring you nicely back down to earth is a well-needed superb cover of the classic Georgia Satellites’ track “Battleship Chains”.
Another particular highlight on this album is “The Loa’s Crossroad” which has an excellent bagpipe solo and trust me – as a Scot living away from home this was a welcome sound.
I would also recommend the Deluxe version of this album featuring the extra track “Slaytan” which is a clear nod to Caggiano’s ex band.
Play it Loud.
Score: 8 out of 10
- The Devil’s Bleeding Crown
- Marie Laveau
- For Evigt (feat. Johan Olsen)
- The Gates of Babylon
- Let It Burn
- Black Rose (feat. Danko Jones)
- Mary Jane Kelly
- Goodbye Forever
- Seal the Deal
- Battleship Chains
- You Will Know
- The Loa’s Crossroad
Michael Poulsen (Lead vocals & Rhythm guitar) | Jon Larsen (Drums & Percussion) | Rob Caggiano (Lead guitar & Backing vocals) | Kaspar Boye Larsen (Bass guitar)
3rd June 2016
The Devil’s Bleeding Crown | For Evigt | Seal the Deal | Battleship Chains