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Lonewolf - The Fourth and Final Horseman Review

by Matt Hensch

Lonewolf carries the title of being the French answer to Running Wild and Grave Digger, although I had never heard of the band until I stumbled onto "The Fourth and Final Horseman." I'm quite fond of the aforementioned groups, but I find myself bored to tears trudging through the mediocre, static reflections of superior factions and lazy mechanics that control every inch of this. "The Fourth and Final Horseman" looks fierce at first, but it clops around more like a mule than a pale harbinger of death once the initial theme that controls each and every song goes south and reveals a squad with no fuel left to burn. The problem with Lonewolf is that the group tries so hard to sit at the big boys' table that the passion of this breed of heavy metal is left in the corner drooling on itself and wearing its dunce cap like a badge of valor.

Lonewolf is accurately portrayed as the French answer to Running Wild and Grave Digger, because that's really the only quality of "The Fourth and Final Horseman" with any color. It's an admirable blueprint, a style Lonewolf gives occasional justice to, but too often they wallow in forgettable straightforward riffs that have no edge and big choruses that try to force catchiness instead of actually being memorable. How about this: instead of an answer, they come off as a cheapened mold without the passion or creativity that made the aforementioned bands so highly regarded. That's about as deep as the analysis goes: they sound like Grave Digger, trying to hack and slash through the apocalypse with the musical might of one of those Fisher Price orange plastic shovels bonking a gargoyle on the head.

The melodies and lead guitar work are actually very well done, but those qualities are greatly overshadowed by the absences of meaningful material and eventful hooks alike. Some tracks like "Destiny" attempt to add substance by running up the clock, but most of this stuff just adds a thin layer of smoke to the album's real structure, which involves dull choruses and circling around half-assed instrumental work found on records done by a million other groups who have taken this exact same route. The worst offender of all—this seems to be the big issue with Lonewolf from what I've seen—is Jens Bφrner. His vocals are hilariously rough, like Chris Boltendahl trying to sing while he's trapped in a machine that rifles a baseball at his ballsack every thirty seconds. They're basically the moldy mashed potatoes to the album's undercooked steak.

Lonewolf simply does not have enough zest to its brand of heavy metal to make the band remotely entertaining or memorable in a setting such as this. Even during its finest moments, "The Fourth and Final Horseman" looks pointlessly blatant and utterly forgettable. Maybe someone will find the simple riffs and bouncy choruses entertaining, but this kind of thing has been done far better by groups that run circles around this. If you want something like Grave Digger or Running Wild, just listen to Grave Digger or Running Wild.

Lonewolf - The Fourth and Final Horseman


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