As Our Army Grows
U.K. natives Intense stand for stomping Power Metal in the vein of their American counterparts. Brutal double-bass attacks, heavy guitars, and powerful vocals, as well as excellent songwriting and clichÃ©-free lyrics, distinguish the band from the norm. Anyone with a preference for solid, thrashy riffs, glorious melodies and genuine Metal will not be disappointed. Be prepared for neck-breaking, head-banging ecstasy that brings back memories of Iced Earth's glory days. Bang your head!
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The shoestring budget isn't really an issue and in fact the quality of the band and Karl Grooms production is actually a plus - an overcoming of a potential limitation that leads to a sense of optimism. Other parts to weight against the good however is that Intense are in a crowded genre and they aren't in possession of a major domestic market (Dragonforce is the only British power metal band allowed a modicum of respect at home thus far, largely because they are considered to be taking the mickey). But as for musically specific weaknesses there is the fact that vocalist Sean Hetherington seems to be a bit strained and anaemic and while he may have a decent enough voice I'm not sure he's in the right genre to really show it in the best light as he really has no authority on this record. Certainly if he gets more comfortable or stronger of voice or writes lyrics more suited to himself rather than trying to copy what all the other power metal singers do then this bands next album may be quite interesting.
3.5 stars for this lovingly put together small time project.
1. ANGER OF THE ANCIENTS (4:14)
2. MIRROR SHROUD (4:08)
3. OUR LAST HOPE (7:09)
4. YOU DIE TODAY (6:29)
5. INSANITY'S CALL (6:11)
6. TEMPTRESS (5:48)
7. FEAR IS NOT ENOUGH (4:53)
CHRONICLES OF THE NEW FLESH (TRILOGY)
8. TROJAN TRANSMISSION (5:21)
9. STRANGE NEW WORLD (7:03)
10. LONG LIVE THE NEW FLESH (5:42)