Released by: Napalm Records
Release Date: Out Now!!!
Genre: Heavy Metal
Jens Börner – vocals and rhythm guitar
Alex Hilbert – lead guitar and backing vocals
Rikki Mannhard – bass guitar and backing vocals
Antoine Bussiere – drums
1. The Fourth and Final Horseman
2. The Poison of Mankind
4. Time of War
5. Another Star Means Another Death
7. Guardian Angel
8. Throne of Skulls
9. The Brotherhood of Wolves
Ever wondered what it would sound like if Udo Dirkschneider and Biff Byford with a dash of Blaze Bayley were melded together into one singer? No me either, but if you were the answer is, you’d get the singer from Lonewolf, Jens Börner. Formed way back in 1993 in France, they’ve fallen under my radar until now with their second release on Napalm Records The Fourth and Final Horseman.
Musically they’re definitely Power Metal in the Pirate Metal variety, though lyrically they find more common ground with Viking Metal. Lonewolf create their own sound despite swimming in common territory as other groups in the power/pirate metal realm. Driving, thunderous performances carry the unique vocal styling pretty well. There are many aspects of this album I really enjoy, but as a whole it kind of falls short for me. Could be the vocals, could be the mildly derivative sound- I’m really not sure as to what specifically “put me off” this album somewhat. It’s not one I instantly loved or instantly hated. It was worth a listen or two, but overall just leaves me preferring to spin a different album to be frank. If I had to lay blame at one particular aspect it would be weak songwriting. None of them truly jump out at me and get stuck in my head.
I’m sure it will find its niche audience as most bands do, but I’m pretty sure I won’t be a part of that crowd. If the songs were stronger and more interesting, The Fourth and Final Horseman would stand a better chance, but in a year with some pretty spectacular metal releases, it falls short of absolute greatness. Having said that, I give it 5 out of 10.
Written by Chris Martin