Through metal, a lot of strong bonds and friendships are formed. Often, it’s to the point where bands are formed. This is definitely the case with Italian Heavy Metal outfit STEEL RAISER. They have unleashed their latest album Acciaio and the word translates to Steel from Italian. Coincidence? Given the sturdy material that this album offers, it’s far from that.
Acciaio gets off to a straight forward start with the tracks The Fourth Seal (Intro) and Demon Angel. It’s well known that a great intro to an album can make a difference to how you enjoy the rest of the content. The atmospheric intro lures the listener in before they are treated to the musings of Demon Angel. First impressions? The production seems a tad quiet. If anything, it encourages the listener to crank up the volume to maximum power. Let’s be honest, that is the only way to experience those finger blistering solos and prevailing vocal work. They do say every cloud has a silver lining.
The style at first comes across as very old school Heavy Metal. JUDAS PRIEST comes to mind. That style is reinforced on the track Heavy Metal Hero. It’s a song that will undoubtedly go down as a classic in years to come. Particularly when the chorus swims around your head minutes, even hours after listening.
As you delve further into the album, some Power Metal influences can be heard. Particularly with the vocal work. BLIND GUARDIAN springs to mind when listening to the track Rising Phoenix. If you want a rough idea of what the love child of Rob Halford and Hansi Kürsch will sound like, then listen to the fantastic vocal work of Alfonso Giordano.
It’s quite rare to come across a song that makes you raise an eyebrow yet you can’t help but laugh. When it comes to Acciaio, there is a song called Genghis Khan on the album. Songs about historical figures are usually fascinating to listen to as it encourages you to find out more about the person and how they made history. It also makes you wonder why the band decided to write about said figure. Anyway, going back to the song. When you start listening, you can hear Asian influences within the music alongside the Thrash elements. After listening to this track, you will be chiming “gong gong Genghis Khan” before you know it!
If ballads are your thing then Acciaio has a beautiful one. It’s entitled Wherever and it tugs at the heartstrings. There are dramatic arrangements, passionate vocals and sweeping clashes on the drums, this ballad ticks all the boxes. The concluding track Up The Fist helps you feel motivated and ready to go. More than apt. given that one of the lines is “Are you ready?”
It’s evident from the album that STEEL RAISER are not a band to be messed with and Acciaio will ensure that their music is heard. Get the album, crank to the max and enjoy the ride!
Acciaio is out now via Iron Shield Records