In my opinion Wolf has taken some giant steps from the Iron Maiden worship of their earlier albums. Now they only sound like a band heavily influenced by Iron Maiden. Legion of Bastards is a just such an eighties metal influenced album.
The sole original member, Niklas Stålvind, and especially his voice, is the main element of Wolf’s sound. In many ways it is also the only thing that makes them stand out from the crowd of eighties worshipping heavy metal acts. He has this, squeaking, almost whiny quality to it, that makes him sound honest and, at times, bursting with energy. Although it falls short on harder numbers, like Skullcrusher.
The opener, Vicious Companions, is a snarly tune that fits Wolf perfectly, this is the kind of song they do well. Skullcrusher is a good song, but I have issues with the vocals, as mentioned above. Full Moon Possession is another killer track, bursting with energy and a driving beat.
The best song of the album is by far Jekyll & Hyde. It’s just so powerful, the riffs are amazing and the vocal works. After this follows a string lesser songs, but all of the songs has glimpses of glory..
The next songs that stood out are the last two, Hope to Die and K-141 Kursk. Both songs are catchy tunes, with great melodies.
My biggest issue with the Wolf that they tend to hide a few tracks in the middle of a record, that honestly should have been left off. The quality of the songwriting is just too inconsistent. When it works, it works great, especially the choruses are great.
I think this is a slightly weaker record than its predecessor, but it’s still a solid album, with great heavy, melodic metal.