Review – HammerFall: Legacy of Kings

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Review – HammerFall: Legacy of Kings
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HammerFall: Legacy of Kings
Power Metal
Nuclear Blast Records
September 28th, 1998
Release length: 44:56
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Legacy Of Kings, the second full length release by HammerFall is a rather exception album. At the time this album was released, it was becoming increasingly harder to find any talented and new heavy metal acts, and the sound that this band is pumping out was truly a breath of fresh air, and still is to this day. Considered one of the most important bands in the heavy metal scene today, this album is perhaps one of the more crucial albums, if not for its sound, than for the fact that Legacy Of Kings single-handedly made rainbows metal.

There are many moments on Legacy Of Kings that sound very similar to that of Manowar, and there are plenty of songs on here that, while are very serious, just seem a bit too cheesy. Take “Let The Hammer Fall” for example. This slower paced track sounds great for what it is, but during the chorus you are greeted with a higher vocal style reciting the song name, and then a tone-deaf lower singing voice behind it, and at the end group chanting for the word “fall”. And, of course, you have the track “At The End Of The Rainbow” which, lyrically, is just a bit too out there for some people, even though it is easily one of the best songs on the album with its heavy, bass driven march-like music.

However, while many people may look at this album as another cheesy metal worship album, it really is a great album that fuses heavy and power metal well. The opener “Heading The Call” will easily be lodged in your head with its catchy chorus and guitar riffs, and “Dreamland” is a more uptempo song with superb singing, drum work overlaid with some simplistic guitar work. If you couldn’t tell by the mention of “simple” throughout the review thus far, yes, there is an extreme lack of anything really technical on the album. Much of the music on here is typically a simple driving riff with either a lighter chorus with a few chords being strummed and held, or that same strumming riff with a little bit of extra guitar work thrown in. “Back To Back” features both of these traits, but this one is a cover song so it can’t really be blamed on HammerFall for the simple riffs, however the guitar solo on it is great and perhaps the best off the whole album since there really aren’t any on this release, and if you happen on any, they are not that great in the first place, with the exception of the solo on “Warriors Of Faith”.

There isn’t really much else to say about this release aside that there are plenty of cons. While the simplistic music works for HammerFall, the music often sounds hollow in the guitar work, especially on “Let The Hammer Fall”. Other then that, Legacy Of Kings is a nice change of direction, but isn’t one of the greatest albums of all time like some people make it out to be. Sure, “Dreamland, “Remember Yesterday” and “Stronger Than All” are absolutely phenomenal tracks that really show a great deal of potential from the band, but it may take more than one listen for this release to really sit well, but Legacy Of Kings is a great album that shows a lot of promise for the future HammerFall albums, with only one, maybe two tracks on here that will grow old and find you hitting the skip button on.


01. Heading The Call – 4:30
02. Legacy Of Kings – 4:13
03. Let The Hammer Fall – 4:14
04. Dreamland – 5:40
05. Remember Yesterday – 5:05
06. At The End Of The Rainbow – 4:04
07. Back To Back (Pretty Maids Cover) – 3:37
08. Stronger Than All – 4:27
09. Warriors Of Faith – 4:43
10. The Fallen One – 4:23
Initial Pressing Score: 7/10

HammerFall
HammerFall

Digital review copy of this release provided by Nuclear Blast Records.