From the first notes of the new Accept album Blood of the Nations, you know you’re in for classic metal. Vocalist Mark Tornillo is a great fit for this band and a worthy successor to Udo Dirkschneider, who, of course, is doing his own thing nowadays and did not take part in this reunion.
"Beat the Bastards" is closely followed by "Teutonic Terror," surely as good a one, two hit as the opening of any classic metal CD. The riffs and lead breaks fly thick and fast, Mark screams over the top and the end result is frankly far better than anyone had any right to expect. The current "Give 'em the axe" slogan found on a lot of the tour merch, comes from a line in "Teutonic Terror." The third song is "The Abyss," which starts with a really open riff, before breaking down to an arpeggio figure. If anything, this song is better than the first two, and really gives you a feeling that the whole album is just going to go from strength to strength. The light and shade of this song only make the heavy sections heavier. This whole album is classic metal, where techniques like this are used, where real songwriting happens instead of just layer after layer of super heavy riffs and growly vocals, as is so common nowadays. The next track is the title track of the album, "Blood of the Nations."
Another strong, riff based song, is followed by "Shades of Death," which starts like a ballad but soon heats up. "Locked and Loaded," "Time Machine," "Kill the Pain," song after song of classic metal keep on coming. The quality of the song writing and the playing is consistently good right through. "Rolling Thunder" is a straight ahead metal song, with less light and shade compared to the ones before. "Pandemic" is definitely one of the best tracks on the CD, and it has the classic line "It’s a metal disease." I’m not sure what it means, but I love it.
"New World Comin’" starts with some gnarly bass. One thing I really took away from the LA show is what a great bass player Peter is, something that I don’t think comes to the fore on the albums as much as it should. " No Shelter" and "Bucket Full of Hate" round out the album in style, both straight ahead metal songs. I have the Japanese edition, so I have one more song, "Land of the Free." It’s not markedly different from the other songs, although it has a galloping rhythm, which I don’t remember noticing before. If you’re a hardcore fan, it’s worth having, but it’s not any better than the songs you get.
Lots of bands are getting together again nowadays, probably some for the money and some for the music. Whatever their reason, Accept have shown they have a lot of good music still in them. If you love traditional heavy metal, then you need this CD, and you should also check out their live show, which is killer, if you get a chance.