Album: Ghastly Waves and Battered Graves
Genre: Power metal, thrash metal
Label: Metal Blade Records
FFO: Judas Priest, Helloween, Thin Lizzy
In the wise words of my German great-grandmother, “ach du meine güte!” What I like about Ghastly Waves and Battered Graves is that is that hollow, vast sound that is typically associated with German metal, that type of sounds fills the room. And let’s be honest, metal should own the room! There are a few riffs that really stick out with a more punk/horror sound and some riffs walked on the edge of melodic. It has that golden-age-of-the-80s-metal sound that some bands stray very far from so you aren’t going to find this on a shelf next to death metal. Ghastly Waves and Battered Graves has a more upbeat mood that just feels more clean to me in comparison to other new releases.
The unique thing about speed and power metal bands is that their albums tend to flow very well. This was a great example of that element. If you weren’t paying attention, you might not even notice the song changes. The song that really caught my ear was their Thin Lizzy cover. Obviously, anytime a band covers an iconic song there is going to be some shoes to fill. Vulture did a killer (sorry!) job of covering “Killer on the Loose.” They pay homage to the original, but also make it their own without butchering the name.
At around 45 minutes long, it is a pretty short listen. This means that you have more time to give it a replay! My personal favorite moment was the title track “Ghastly Waves and Battered Graves.” It is probably the most heaviest and longest track on the album that comes in as a namesake. This is quite a bit different from what I would usually pick for myself so wasn’t really moments that I didn’t like, but moments that just weren’t my taste. With all that aside, this album is what I would consider “fine tuned metal.”
I am a sucker for European bands. Everyone thinks Rammstein when they hear “German metal,” but Vulture really creates their own sound on this album while still living up the term metal. It is streamlined, but still has rebellious elements mixed alongside the melodic tones. Vulture tours Europe this summer, but I think Ghastly Waves and Battered Graves could land them in North America.
Star Rating: 9/10
Strongest Song: “Dewer’s Hollow”