The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world

The Rock Pit - Hard rock, Metal and Blues Interviews, news & reviews from Australia and around the world



The Rockpit

By Robert Kitay

The Rockpit


Infected is the 8th album from Sweden’s Hammerfall. I must say that this album is a bit of a departure from Hammerfall’s previous releases. From the album cover to the topics of the songs (less fantasy and more horror), Infected was not what I expected. That is not to say that this is a bad album because there is a lot to like in this release, but it certainly isn’t my favorite release from Hammerfall and it isn’t where I would recommend you start if you are new to the band.


The first thing that hit me on the first listen through is that several of the songs have a Saxon feel to it, “Patient Zero,” “B.Y.H.” and “Outlaw” all sound a lot like what you might expect from Saxon, down to Joacim’s vocal style sounding much like Biff Byford. I can’t ever remember thinking that about any of Hammerfall’s previous releases.


My favorite song on the album is “One More Time,” which is full of heavy drums and wonderful crunchy guitars. This will be a fantastic live track for sure. Just try not to pump your fist in the air while listening to this track – it simply isn’t possible. “Send Me a Sign” is a mostly acoustic guitar and vocal piece. It’s fine, but again not what you’d expect.


My least favorite track on the album is “Dia De Lost Muertos,” which has a number of time changes in it, none of which are smooth, as well and both English and Spanish lyrics. This makes for a rather awkward feel to my ears. After this track, the rest of the album finishes strong. The next track, “I Refuse” is a real strong track heavy on the bass and with a return of the crunchy guitars.


“666 – The Enemy Within” is another decent straight ahead power metal track, followed by the even better song “Immortalized” which has a crisper, stronger, more powerful sound with an excellent guitar solo. “Let’s Get It On” is another strong song that has a Saxon feel to it. It is a simple song that, once again, seems to have been written as a stand out live track that has audience participation written all over it.


The album finishes strong with the track “Redemption,” which has a church organ introduction, followed slower, heavier sections with haunting vocals alternating with powerful, faster sections, and finishing with harpsichord. A great track, and my second favorite of the album.


Overall, this is a good album, but I suspect a year from now after the newness wears off this is not the Hammerfall album I select when I’m in the mood for some Hammerfall.