Forensick - The Prophecy - (8.5/10)
Published on August 27, 2014
Warning: This article contains three of the most petty quibbles you may ever read in a heavy metal review…
Of late, metal fans could be forgiven for thinking they’d stepped into a time machine and travelled back about 30 years and Forensick from Germany maintain that trend on their second album, The Prophecy. Fortunately, Forensick do it very well and better than most of their peers playing eighties-style heavy metal.
The songs here are generally well-written and catchy. There are similarities to mid-late eighties Iron Maiden in many of the riffs and solos, but the vocals are nothing like Mr Dickinson’s and the songs overall sound more like, for example, Riot.
Tobias Hübner’s vocals are generally efficient yet unspectacular. He has a fairly ‘normal’ singing voice that isn’t a standout feature, except when he screams out the high notes to great effect, recalling Jon Oliva’s higher notes or the late, great David Wayne. And here’s petty quibble number one – Tobias appears to have a slight issue with his ‘s’s. Many of them turn into a whistle, which starts to grate after a while. It’s funny when Herbert the Pervert in “Family Guy” does it, but in serious metal songs, it’s just irritating, especially so in the chorus of “Lonesome Words”, which is littered with s-whistles. (‘Swhistles’? Would that work? As a word to describe the sound? Hmm…) The words to that chorus are introspective and bleak, so would work far better without the whistling sound:
“Listen to the sound of silence
The worst sound I’ve ever heard
Since you were gone, nothing’s like before
Just like a spear inside of my heart
It will kill me, this bloody, painful feeling
I will suffer, I’ll suffer forevermore”
The album is full of good songs and kicks off in style with “Hero of the Day”, which has a chorus full of classic metal “whoa”s. It’s a real ‘punch the air’ metal anthem. “Whoa whoa whoa” – you got to love it! The guitar solos throughout are excellent and sometimes quite long, such as “Doomsday Machine” and “When the War Begins”, which is great to hear at a time when it seems so many other bands come up with good solos that are over far too soon.
One of the highlights is “Beast Within”, which is another powerful, catchy tune with some very Maiden-ish rhythm work. The chorus is great, but the last line seems to have syllable too many. Honestly, check it out. And that’s petty quibble number two. Just that one syllable. A minor point though in a memorable metal song.
Quibble number three is simply, “wengeance”. Hübner pronounces his ‘v’s perfectly well elsewhere, but for some reason on the last two tracks, he sings “wengeance” instead of “vengeance”. Why? It may just be a language problem, but surely someone should have told him? It brings to mind some rubbish eighties sitcom, with caricatures of foreign nationals trying to speak English, which is a pity as they are good songs.
That’s enough quibbling. These may seem like trifling matters, and in a lesser album they probably wouldn’t even be noticed, but they do stick like unwelcome sore thumbs when the music is otherwise so damned good.
“Wengeance” aside, the title track is a great way to close the album, with galloping riffs, a nice chorus and yet another fantastic guitar solo.
There’s nothing particularly original about The Prophecy, but it is chock-full of great metal tunes. An excellent old-school heavy metal album, highly recommended for fans of good old eighties heavy metal.