Four years passed since Anton Kabanen and Battle Beast parted their ways. During this time Anton released two great albums with his band Beast In Black and the fans waited what should Battle Beast do without their main composer. In 2017 the band releases a quite good album Bringer Of Pain and now it’s time for their fifth effort No More Hollywood Endings.
To tell the truth, I got this promo before release date, when I was on vacation in Ukraine. Walking on the streets of Kharkiv and Kyiv I listened to the album and really tried to like it. After all, I really like Steel and the self-titled Battle Beast. I was thrilled with Unholy Savior (watching “Black Ninja” video countless times) and 2017 Bringer Of Pain was also not bad at all. But the fifth longplay became one big disappointment and I really didn’t want to write about it. Nonetheless the dues must be paid.
I’ll start from those few good things I found in an album. First of all, Noora Louhimo’s vocals still amazing. Noora knows very well what to do with it, making it raw and powerful or contrariwise, singing clean and very emotionally. The second thing is that there are some good heavy songs in this album, though. I mean, songs that were expected from the band, like middle-paced “Piece Of Me” with catchy riff or “Raise Your Fists”, which sounds like a hymn, equal to the name. And, of course, galloping “The Golden Horde”, which would be great if not its intro: seems like it was written by Scooter (however, it ends pretty quickly).
Now let’s talk about the bad things: in this album the band, probably, decided to develop their music but haven’t decided in which direction. So the album, if we’re talking generally, sounds like Symphonic Metal, 90-00s pop melodies and traditional Heavy Metal mix. Theoretically, it’s not a bad idea, but actually it sounds disgusting. In the title track “No More Hollywood Endings” the band decided to add some symphony and theatrical things, emphasized it with choreography in the video. Not what was expected from Battle Beast, but it’s not the worst thing. The next “Eden” sounds like some Nightwish bonus track from Annete Olzon era: it’s smooth, technically simple and totally template, like 3/4 of this album. “Unfairly Tales” gets the band back to 80s (or rather what Battle Beast think what is 80s), if you skip the poppy intro.
And here the worst thing in this album: “Endless Summer”. Take the most trivial 80s song, add some cheesy guitars and you will get this. I think even in 80s “Endless Summer” will not get to any charts, which was mean a lot back in those days.
Also I need to mention “I Wish”, emotional ballad, full of orchestra samples. Yes, it’s not bad musically, but for a great justice I need to say that songs like this were performed by almost all female pop singers on MTV in 00s.
I really don’t understand how and why such bright band somehow wasted all its potential and became a total mediocrity, even covered with lavish (yet still mediocre) arrangements.
To make a long story short: Battle Beast ver. 5.0 went wrong. Rollback please!
No More Hollywood Endings was released on March, 22 via Nuclear Blast Records.