In late March of this year, German power metallers Sinbreed released their second album, Shadows. This album was four years in the making, and to my ears it was time well spent. Band leader and lead guitarist Flo Laurin has said that the time was used to craft better songs and to create more of a cohesive band sound. Shadows as an album clearly accomplishes that, containing 10 punishing, uncompromising, power metal tracks that do not let up from start to finish.
The album opens with the first single and video, Bleed. This track is the best single representation of the whole album. It has the non stop driving force of constant double bass drumming, terrific speedy guitar leads, and fantastic soaring vocals from singer Herbie Langhaus. When I think of German power metal, I instinctively expect higher octave vocals, but Langhaus is not that type of singer. His range is lower with a sound very similar to that of Accept's Mark Tornillo. This style adds a darker, more agressive feel to the songs which takes them to another level sonically. Next song is Call to Arms, which is one of the faster songs on the album. The title track Shadows is next, which is the darkest, heaviest song on the album. The next three songs Reborn, Leaving the Road, and Far too Long each have a unique characteristic that stands out to me. Reborn has some of the best vocals on it, Leaving the Road has great lead guitar work, and Far Too Long is probably the fastest song on the album. Black Death is the next song, and my favorite on the album. It opens with a killer guitar riff that carries throughout the whole song. Broken Wings has a great acoustic guitar opening, and London Moon is another solid metal tune. The album closes withy the seven minute plus opus, Standing Tall. This is a terrific album closer that is a brutal assault on your senses.