The Claymore


Written by: PP on 04/06/2009 11:22:35

"The mixture of melodic speed metal and power metal accompanied by modern elements is what gives the songs of The Claymore an own matchless character" - am I the only one who reads this promotional sentence and immediately thinks of at least hundred other bands all from Germany? To be fair, sophomore album "Sygn" isn't nearly as bad as 90% of power/heavy metal hybrid records are but to call it original is stretching the envelope so much that it breaks. You can tell however why it took four years between this one and their debut; everything sounds crispier and better.

The Claymore's biggest strength is their ability to write ear-catching melodies that manage to avoid sounding like copies of 80s/early 90s heavy/power metal bands. The rumbling bass is refreshingly audible the mix - how many times do you hear a metal album where the bass just disappears into the midst of kickdrums & guitar distortion. Because of this the record has another dynamic than just the vocal/guitar interplay. It may not be much but it's enough to immediately make me more interested in a band that I'd otherwise listen to twice or thrice before throwing it away and writing yet another 'generic power metal' review where I have absolutely nothing to say about the band. The vocalist otherwise fits perfectly into the generic heavy metal category, he's hanging by a thread between clean melodic singing and annoying vibrato the whole time, but luckily doesn't fall into the latter too often giving his harmonies much more power. The guitars and bass do most of the talking regardless so the vocalist isn't even that important; there's enough interesting riffs and melodies here to feed an army. Again I have to mention how important the audible bass is to making the guitar melodies interesting, as most of the time it lives its own life instead of just shadowing the guitar religiously.

All things said, however, The Claymore are still a bit too similar to the vast majority of bands in their genre. Think of bands like Silent Force, Metalium, Iron Fire, Mystic Prophecy... yeah, there are more of them than you can possibly remember and they all sound almost exactly like each other. Another common ground that they all share alongside The Claymore is that although the melodies, riffs, and dynamic interplays are mostly in order (I get it, you guys want to be Iron Maiden), there's just a distinct lack of FEELING in the entire genre. The songs honestly sound like they come from an assembly line. Until the genre as a whole can fix this and become more like Alestorm or Rough Silk, I refuse to give ratings higher than a


Download: Angel's Assassination, Borderline
For the fans of: Silent Force, Angel Dust, Mystic Prophecy, Metalium, Iron Maiden
Listen: Myspace

Release date 06.04.2009
Black Bards Entertainment

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