Back for Revenge

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19/20
Band Name Hercules (GRC)
Album Name Back for Revenge
Type Album
Released date 25 June 2019
Labels Self-Released
Music StyleHeavy Metal
Members owning this album1

Tracklist

1.
 When the Night Fades to Black
 
2.
 Battle of the Archangels
 
3.
 Mighty Monster (Featuring Godzilla and King Kong)
 
4.
 Revenge
 
5.
 Sacrifice (Let the Holocaust Begin)
 
6.
 Babylon the Great the Mother of All Whores
 
7.
 Armageddon
 
8.
 Paranoid (Black Sabbath Cover)
 
9.
 Stormbringer (Deep Purple Cover)
 
10.
 Killers (Iron Maiden Cover)
 

Buy this album

Hercules (GRC)


Review @ nightbreaker33

30 July 2022

Great cult music with high quality production

It is without a doubt, that Hercules have leaped forward regarding their sound, even mentioning that in their most recent release "Back for Revenge (The Radioward Mixes)", a revamped version of "Back for Revenge", a richer mix is incorporated. Well, I really can't argue with that. First of all, it seems that the drums weren't written on Xpand2 unlike the previous albums, and they do sound more realistic, especially the drum kicks. Chris, the leader of the band even put some time to record the vocals and guitars again, which is obviously a good thing. Nevertheless, The entire concept is well thought and I'll explain why in the next paragraphs.

In "Radiowar Mixes", Chris' six-string "Tommy gun" is equipped with a much more wholesome tone, which to my experience can be emulated with the Bias FX plugin that a lot of professional musicians have utilized on their recordings in past five years. The guitar sounds like it was recorded and mastered on a big-budget studio, but in reality, I can assure you all this was done in a very small room. However, just like most of Hercules' records, the bass is mixed very low and as a result, it is very difficult to distinguish from the other instruments. In my opinion, this problem could be solved if Chris would tone down the reverb a little bit.

Referring to the music, the creative guitar riffs can be appreciated much more from the fans who appreciate big-budget music productions more. But even people who don't mind raw production like me might consider this album superior to the first version of "Back for Revenge". The screams, growls, and haunting vocals are still there and make their presence much more compelling in Hercules' more sludgy songs such as "Babylon The Great" and "Revenge" (the latter is sung in Greek). The songs can range from complex epics such as "When The Night fades To Black" to much more hardcore punk-influenced music, as one can listen from "Mighty Monster". Another thing I'd like to mention about the album, is the addition of keyboard segments, which are masterfully arranged by Chris, in order to channel a similar manifestation of Virgin's Steele epic spirit without ripping them off.

My personal favorite songs on this album, are "Armageddon" with its bizarre (in a good way) introduction combining both the harmonic minor and the Dorian scale, its epic chorus and decent guitar solo, and "When The Night Fades To Black" which brings to my mind, a picture of an army on a stealthy operation to conquer a city while everyone else is sleeping there. Hercules also takes a much more experimental approach by releasing a symphonic arrangement of the song "Sacrifice". It's a good rendition, though I'd rather stick to the original because the guitar is sort of buried in the "Group And Orchestra" version due to the horns predominating the tune, regarding their volume.

Overall, "Back for Revenge (The Radiowar Mixes)" is a release that I welcome, and I bet most people would if they dedicated 50 minutes of their life to take a listen to it. As I said earlier, this is Hercules' first album with high-quality production and a successful effort, even if the mixing is a bit rough. It is my firm belief though, that bands like Hercules who don't have the ability to record on much more expensive equipment, are those who always don't hesitate to thrill the audience and offer something new with each release, in comparison to a more famous band such as Metallica who made two very similar albums (Those are "Death Magnetic" and "Hardwired...") and are criticized for recycling older songwriting patterns again and again the past twelve years.


Recommended tracks:
"Armageddon"
"When The Night Fades To Black"

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Review @ nightbreaker33

30 July 2022

Back for revenge

Before I begin this review, I would like to mention that this and all of Hercules' albums are in my opinion intended to be heard on headphones or earphones. I believe that due to the fact that you can pay closer attention to the instruments and the vocals if you use my suggested way of listening.

Anyway, a while back, I reviewed the “Radiowar Mixes” version of “Back for Revenge” which had a tighter much more robust sound and its production could rival that of other modern big-budget bands. I also mentioned that I prefer the Radiowar version. Well... I changed my mind, I prefer the original one.

The reason why I did that, is...well... first of all you have Hercules covering three classic songs from three timeless titanic bands, Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, and Iron Maiden in the style of arrangement that is utilized in Chris' original compositions. I really like how he plays the riffs and especially the solos of those last three songs without being a copycat of the well-respected bands' guitarists. Honestly, I believe he destroys all those rich boys on youtube who record covers with big-budget equipment and get millions of views, for me Chris is always welcome to do more renditions of other classic metal or hard rock songs. Even if on “Paranoid” I think the song could be played half a step lower in order for Chris to sing it more comfortably because I can sense his straining a bit.

It's true that “Back for Revenge”, has more fast-paced, thrashy songs than the rest of the Hercules releases and I don't think there is a song here played in less than 120 beats per minute. It's a very welcome approach to this music done with mastery by Chris on each instrumental section. For example, you have the drum kicks causing mini earthquakes on the mix and the raw distortion of the guitar unleashing some of the most badass riffs you've never heard. Just the way each guitar is recorded and panned is absolutely perfect. And that comes from the experience of Chris who has been playing our favorite six-string friend for more than ten years utilizing some very beautiful chords which establish an epic atmosphere without the need for the filters and effects of the Radiowar version.

It is an undisputed fact, that Chris' rhythm and lead playing aren't sloppy at all. Instead, his alternate and down picking are both very consistent and his solos as I have always said, sound very original and bring the listener in a state of porosis with the latter. Finally, the guy can scream like an enraged mythical beast while still maintaining some melodic elements in his voice as you can tell from his vocal parts and his spoken words and shouting are elements that truly define the great genre of epic metal.

Highlights:

“When The Night Fades To Black”
Revenge

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