• An Alestorm review for dogs - A review of Alestorm's "No Grave But the Sea"

    Alestorm - No Grave But the Sea (2017)

    Woof woof! Very good! On its fifth studio record, Alestorm offers another ten anthemic, humorous an uplifting songs about pirates and the sea. While the band doesn't try out anything new, No Grave But the Sea is among the quintet's most consistent efforts so far. The record doesn't include any cover songs, unnecessary instrumentals or other fillers and convinces from start to finish. The band sounds authentic, free-spirited and powerful because it doesn't take itself too serious and delivers what it knows to do best. The limited edition of this album underlines this healthy attitude as it includes the entire record in instrumental form with Christopher Bowes' raw vocals being replaced by barking dogs. Even though this amusing project might sound a little bit redundant throughout ten tracks and a running time above forty-five minutes, the idea is pure comedy gold and works very well if digested in small portions. If you're looking for entertainment and fun, you have the right address. If you want old-fashioned pirate metal with a more serious tone, go bore yourself to death with the last few Running Wild records that nobody needs.

    Alestorm offers a great mixture between short party anthems like ''Mexico'' with its vintage video game sound in the cool introduction or the definite band anthem ''Alestorm'' with its vivid folk instrumentation that meets some gripping metalcore elements and more cinematic and elaborate epics like the atmospheric and dramatic ''To the End of the World'' or the ambitious album closer ''Treasure Island'' that ends with a relaxed acoustic guitar section after seven minutes of upbeat madness. Some songs are also memorable because of their hilarious lyrics such as ''Fucked with an Anchor'' where smooth folk melodies meet explicit lyrics with plenty of swear words. Alestorm's mixture somewhere between Dropkick Murphys, Korpiklaani, The Real McKenzies, Running Wild and Turisas still works as well as it did a decade ago.

    There isn't much else to say about Alestorm's No Grave But the Sea. Those who always liked the band will adore the new record. Those who always thought the band was silly won't change their minds because of this output. Those who never heard of the band must have lived under a rock for the past nine years or more. If that's your case, welcome back to reality, throw a party and go check this record out! Bow-wow bow-wow! Over and out!

    Final rating: 80%

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