"Blind Rage"

By Dr. Abner Mality

You can make a pretty good argument that no classic metal band that lost an iconic frontman made a better recovery than Accept. "Blood of the Nations" and especially "Stalingrad" were two bona fide ragers that proved there was plenty of life left in the Krauts. Now the novelty of the "new" Accept has receded and the chest-beating thunder is not as overpowering. Enter "Blind Rage", which is a different beast, even though there's a rampaging bull on the cover.

This is definitely not as instant as the last two records. It's more relaxed and melodic while still being metallic. It takes some listens to sink in. What surprises me is how much it sounds like "Metal Heart" and "Russian Roulette"....the songwriting is right out of the classic Udo years. If you expected a replay of the fire-breathing "Stalingrad", this will be a surprise. Although the opening cut "Stampede" may lead you to believe otherwise...that is fast and heavy Accept at its best.

The change is more apparent with second cut "Dying Breed", which has a more measured pace and some very involved vocal melodies. That is more the pattern for "Blind Rage", with several semi-balladic cuts like "Dark Side of My Heart", "Bloodbath Mastermind" and "The Curse" as examples. We get to hear more of Mark Tornillo's "sensitive" vocals this time around as opposed to his raspy shouts. Fast songs are not totally absent, as "Trail of Tears", "200 Years" and "Final Journey" have their turbo-charged moments. If you're looking for the anthemic side of Accept, "Wanna Be Free" and "From The Ashes We Rise" fit the bill.

"Blind Rage" is a bit of a cool down after "Stalingrad" and I can understand why the band did show they can still write the more melodic side of their milieu. But fact is, it doesn't hit you right in the nuts like "Stalingrad" did. It is a fine addition to the Accept discography, though...