Volbeat – Seal the Deal & Let’s Boogie (Vertigo 2016)

Yay, a new Volbeat album. I’ve been following Volbeat ever since the release of Rock the Rebel / Metal the Devil. I really loved the easy going creativity, genre meshing and party lyrics. The fact that they didn’t fit neatly into any kind of box really tickled my funnybone. But as their popularity grew, their albums and their live show weakened. The sound grew continually more radiofriendly and their last album, Outlaw Gentlemen & Shady Ladies was feast of weakly veiled ballads and poor riffs.

I wasn’t sure what to expect from this new one, I wasn’t even sure I wanted to listen to it or buy it. But my love for the first two albums is so strong, that I decided to give chance, and the fact that it got good reviews from people I usually agree with, sealed the deal.

The opening track, the Devils Bleeding Crown, is a nice rocker. The fun is back in the music, it’s not a creative fest, but I’m pleased. Next up Marie Laveau is a big letdown and passes by totally unnoticed. For Evigt is the lead single off the album. I can totally see why they chose this track, it’s a pop song, with a love theme and Danish lyrics, to give that exotic edge. It’s not for me however, I like the harder side of Volbeat, and this is not it.

The Gates of Babylon starts off nice, with some Arabic scales, but then falls into mediocrity with boring verse and easily forgettable chorus. The guitar solo is stellar, which brings the song up from a total waste of time. Let it Burn is poprock tune, in a style similar to what the Bangles sounded like in the eighties. Black Rose had me intrigued, because it featured Danko Jones. It turns out that this is a ballad posing as a hard rock song, and I probably won’t listen to again.

The first real standout track of the album is Rebound. This is said to be a kind of tribute to the Ramones, and does sound somewhat like Ramones. The reason this track stands out, is that it’s a piss poor song. It sucks, the riff is shit, the lyrics are teeny bopper crap and whole song just stinks. This is the worst track Volbeat has ever released. It amazes me that they would include this on album.

Mary Jane Kelly is another masked ballad, and the next track, Goodbye Forever is so similar, that it’s hard to tell where one finishes and the other starts. But then, finally, the proper Volbeat rock is back. Seal the Deal is brilliant, absolutely amazing. The riff, the drumming, the lyrics, the melody, the guitar work is spot on. Wow, just wow. I love this song, man … what a song.

Battleship Chains is another feast of banality and the less said about You Will Know, the better. A little bit of honor is saved by the last track The Loas Crossroads which is good song and proper foot tapper.

I like two songs and love one song on this entire record. Worst to date from the Danes.


Recommended: Seal the Deal

Rating: 2/5


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