UDO - Rev Raptor Review
by Matt Hensch
You know exactly what you get when Udo Dirkschneider comes around, and "Rev Raptor" is certainly no deviation from the dirty, driving machine of metal that the German legend forged from Odin's steel after he parted ways with Accept and formed his own project. It almost seems weird that Udo has been acting solo for such a long time, with "Rev Raptor" adding the thirteenth check to the band's list of full-length endeavors. Considering his time in Accept on top of that, Dirkschneider has contributed to over thirty full-length albums during his career; it's no small feat, that's for sure. "Rev Raptor" seems surprisingly predictable in the sense that it's Udo doing the same routine, but few can make it so empowered by energy and zest.
The most important part of this record is its natural relationship with Udo's voice, and the music is unapologetically simple and catchy. The songs remain in the same perimeter of classic 80s metal focused on choruses and slashing guitar solos, but it's actually surprising how well the postulate comes out. Most of the riffs are bitingly fresh and livid with power, while the percussion acts appropriately through catchy rhythms and bone-jarring might. Udo's low-range register makes for a nice listen as usual, and the dude has no problem nailing banshee-scaring screams and that goofy falsetto of his which sounds totally outrageous but totally awesome. "Rev Raptor" is also fairly long, standing at fifty-one minutes of metallic mechanics spread throughout thirteen tracks, and that's quite impressive considering the overused formula at helm.
It's easy to say the material kicks ass, but really, this is enjoyable stuff. "Dr. Death" and "Terrorvision" show the heavier side of Udo's tastes with speedy riffs and killer choruses, a generalized theme of the whole album. "Leatherhead" is incredibly dark, and "Days of Hope and Glory" brings a melancholic side to the record's steel curtain, making for a great closer. Maybe a quarter of the record isn't up to par: "I Give as Good as I Get" reminds me of a ballad Accept would have shelved for obvious reasons, whereas "True Born Winners" and "Pain Man" are lacking musically, but are far from being of a repulsive tenor. "Rev Raptor" hits the spot overall, and is certainly worthy of Udo's glorious voice. Those of you looking for a meaty slab of classic metal cooked right on the 1980s burners will want to feast here.
UDO - Rev Raptor
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