ALBUM REVIEW: Ice War – Defender, Destroyer

There is a spell of frost unleashed from Canada’s capital ready to cool everyone down this summer. Battling the heat waves and leading the assault against the sun comes the new album from ICE WAR.

ICE WAR is the brainchild of Jo “Steel” Capitalicide which was formed from the embers of IRONDOGS back in 2015. Now the long awaited fourth album is released upon the world titled Defender, Destroyer.

Power From Within is a great introductory piece you can feel yourself riding into battle with thunderous hoof-beats aplenty with no option other than victory in your hands.

If you mixed up lapping’s of KING DIAMOND, CRIMSON GLORY and then poured that over with MOTORHEAD; you would end up with Defender Destroyer. There are some really high-pitched vocals that just channels elements of eighties metal and puts a smile on your face whilst channelling all the best parts of Lemmy’s legendary band. Hands down the best track on the album.

Soldiers of Frost features bass shredding and full on punk-like vocals with a catchy and effective chorus “Soldiers of frost whoa!”

Rising From The Tomb is so heavy that it would bring the most decayed corpses back to life! There is some blistering guitar work on offer courtesy of maestro Mr “Steel” whilst also delivering an incredibly heavy fast bass line throughout.   

Mountains Of Skulls sounds like it is going to be a slower number due to the intro piece however this just throws you off with a sound like JOHNNY ROTTEN singing for THE SCORPIONS.

The pace Crucified In Fire reminds one of the faster of THE RAMONES tracks then I am taken aback by the high pitched wail. I feel like I need to raise that studded leather glove to the sky! There are nods to the likes of IRON MAIDEN and JUDAS PRIEST here too.

Demonoid channels all of the early thrash metal style and has some punchy lyrics “it’s the sound of a beast, Demonoid! Demonoid!” featuring some serious guitar shredding within too.

Skull And Crossbones there are some great visual lyrics of in use here “there’s no way back from the underworld”

Running Out of Time watches the sands pour down the hourglass as this blistering assault on the senses takes form. “we are the damned, our time is running out”

Breakaway lyrically this would not be that far away from the politically themed thrash of MEGADETH “melting flesh with lives” Also featuring some good weeping guitar akin to that of an air read siren utilised in the last break before the final chorus.

Whilst this album seems to have crossed through a time vortex into present day, it still holds its own. There are tastes of the eighties Heavy Metal sound, strong flavours of NWOBHM and Speed Metal with a very raw and primal feel about it. Credit does need to be given that this is all the work of one talented musician, and this is totally appreciated throughout. It’s nice that someone is trying to bring back the sound of metal from days gone by.

Whilst the demand is still out there for this style, I do feel that realistically it has missed out by a couple of decades to really make any dent to fans of the modern-day mainstream metal scene. However, this will of course be lapped up by any fan of early Thrash Metal and the overall eighties metal style.

Rating: 8/10

Words: Martin White

Defender, Destroyer will be out this Friday via Fighter Records.

Find ICE WAR on Facebook.

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