Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Mercenary Metamorphosis

Mercenary Metamorphosis

(Prosthetic Records)

By: Strawb

Mercenary are a Danish band with a history that stretches back to the last millennium, having formed in the distant 1991. Since that time, Mercenary have released five full studio albums prior to Metamorphosis. And I have missed all of them! This in itself is not such a blow as it otherwise would be due to the band undergoing major personnel changes in the last couple of years. Mercenary are now a four-piece ensemble with Rene Pedersen having added the vocal duties to his bass skills, and Martin Pedersen having taken over the keyboard duties (just in case lead guitar alone wasn’t taxing enough). Jakob Molbjerg remains on the rhythm guitar, and Morten Sorensen has joined the band as the skin beater extraordinaire. Glad that’s cleared up!

Winding up the amp and clearing the cobwebs from the corner of the room by use of my excellent Mission speaker system, the opening salvo of “Through The Eyes Of The Devil" has both mysel, and the missus moving our heads in an appreciative manner. When the vocals arrive, however, they prove to be just a tad too much on the side of vomit for her. By the time the vocals have smoothed to their more harmonic stage once more, alas, she is gone from the listening room.

At any rate, I am not leaving, though; either vocal incarnation suits me just fine, and, in the way that Scandinavian metal often does, Metamorphosis hits me where I live. Fast or slow, harsh or softer, harmonious or growl, keep it coming boys. Take a moment to exhibit your individual skills or thrash one off together, either suits me. My review copy contains the bonus track “Incorporate Your Demons” and it is well worth the having when you come to buy this gem. It is not the outstanding track - IMO that title falls to “Memoria” - but it does give you ten excellent tracks instead of just nine. No great variation of type, no slow one, no ballad, all tracks are of a constant high standard with clear and concise mixing, as well. There may be many bands out there with a similar sound, not many of them to my liking, but Mercenary may just have been the right band in the right place with this release.

Occasionally, one discovers a new pleasure in life. It can be upon a recommendation from a friend or via the wonder which is the world wide web, but I find the best nugget to be that which is stumbled upon, and Metamorphosis has proved to be one such for me.

How impressed was I? The download was straight onto my iPod and has been played many times since with no lessening of my listening pleasure. I can think of no reason for it not to remain there, either. Today, I went to the band’s website to check their touring schedule - unfortunately nothing in the UK, but, pre-translation, the Norway Rock Festival looks very tempting.....


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