I guess CAULDRON need no introduction. Formed about a decade ago, they’ve been on track and consistently delivering albums at a reasonable pace. It’s a band that breaths for Heavy Metal, something you can easily tell that by all these classic metal influences you can spot in their music. On a personal note, I fancy to believe that it were bands like CAULDRON and ENFORCER that marked the turn of a new generation of fans and bands to the traditional metal sound. Not saying they were the influence for the bloom of NWOTHM we’re currently experiencing, but they were certainly among the first of the new generation of traditional metal bands (NWOTHM) to receive attention from non-underground circles.
“New Gods” marks the band’s fifth album and as you might expect there are no surprises in what’s in for the listener. Mid-tempo riff-driven songs in the vein of ANGELWITCH, WITCHFYNDE, ACCEPT, etc. with lots of hard ‘n’ groovy verses, great guitar work and arena-like choruses are everywhere to be found in the album, keeping quality consistent at all times. I’d say this time they sound gloomier compared to their previous releases, and at the same time a bit more mellow. It seems they took the foot of the pedal and followed a more laid-back approach. The band sounds more mature and seem to have given more focus on sounding grand (especially during choruses), that in case the tuned their guitars higher, they’d definitely made an impression to some AOR fans (eg. “Together as None”).
Take for example “No Longer” or “Letting Go” with its slightly distorted ringing arpeggios. Both of these songs set the pace early on and everything else follows. The exception would be the closing track,“Last Request”, where things speed up a bit and hold a resemblance to their earlier works. “Isolation” on the other hand, is a nice instrumental interlude that adds a nice touch and some depth to the album.
To sum it up… Despite its title, “New Gods” doesn’t provide anything groundbreaking musically, however, it does mark a new direction for the band. I consider bands like CAULDRON to be in the same league of bands like MOTORHEAD, AC/DC, ACCEPT, etc. where being both musician and a fan of “your” music genre acts as a “safe haven”. Lemmy didn’t care if he sounded different with each release, he just wanted to Rock ‘n’ Roll to the end. That seems to be CAULDRON‘s cause as well and I’ve nothing but respect for it. Tune in!
Personal pics: “Drown”, “Letting Go”, “Last Request”, “Letting Go”.