Review: U.D.O. “Game Over” [AFM Records]

Review: U.D.O. “Game Over” [AFM Records]

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After three years of relative silence German legends U.D.O. have returned with a brand new record Game Over, highly and proudly holding the banner of heavy metal. And again they have joined forces with AFM Records, proving their successful collaboration for 18 years!

Nothing can stop U.D.O. from quitting the scene, it is clear, that their mastermind Udo Dirkschneider will never give up his affection for traditional heavy metal with steel balls and iron will. Heavy metal is in his blood, so his music is nearly unaltered during his 30+ long musical career path. He left Accept for various reasons, but the main was that he wanted to go on with classical heavy metal without commercial edges, however the band meant to focus on American market, adapting to their own musical trends. So after leaving Accept Udo was able to spill his guts in his new heavy metal project. Yes, there were times when he returned back to Accept (it wasn’t so easy to replace his unique voice and charismatic performance), but eventually after three more records it was finally over, and once again U.D.O. became his main priority.

Maybe for many listeners the music of U.D.O. sounds a little bit nostalgic and emotional, but this band is frozen in time, when heavy metal is always on trend. Perhaps it’s some kind of musical stagnation or unwillingness to adapt to a modern reality, but for such bands as U.D.O. nothing can persuade them to give up this heavy metal lifestyle, and this attitude really pays off with the sincerity and driving force. Their last opus Game Over is a good example of this attitude, the musicians mixed up everything from their experience with the classical European heavy metal traits, producing the solid and confident release without the slightest doubt.

This album sounds evenly and doesn’t contain any surprises or nontraditional moves, it’s just straightforward heavy metal, and if you like this genre of music, then U.D.O. will be always welcomed into your relevant playlist. Forty-five years in heavy metal industry is enough to prove your capability to ignite with fire rock ’n’ roll hearts on your own terms and in your own style. So, Game Over is no exception, so more than an hour of catchy and striking HM is guaranteed, but with all the familiar Accept/U.D.O. tricks.

Generally Game Over is performed in mid-tempo, although some of the compositions have the vigorous and mischievous spirit, speeding them up in military style (like “Prophecy” or “Metal Damnation”). And also the half-ballad “Don’t wanna say goodbye” runs out of common rhythm, adorning it with some kind of folky romance. Southern influence on tracks “I see red” and “Kids and Guns” alludes on something from AC/DC or even Guns n’ Roses, temporarily abandoning the traditional European realm of hard ‘n’ heavy. The songs are full of clichés and general HM rules, but with nostalgic feelings, catchy melodies and hymn-like choruses, Game Over sounds so relaxingly playful, and the signature voice of Udo absolutely kills of this old school moldiness, even after so many years of headbanging, this band hasn’t lost its flame.

U.D.O. have always stayed true to themselves in every aspect of the band’s life – from creative process to visual images. Maybe they are not the most avaricious rockstars with attitude and drunken incidents on every step, but whatever, their devotion to heavy metal is in their blood, and their music is the proof. So, without original ideas and thirst for innovations, the last album of U.D.O. has blasted the hearts with everlasting boom, like lickety-split.

Release date: October 22nd, 2021

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About the author

I am into metal music from the school times, started from traditional genres, and now exploring the experimental scene. I'm also interested in modern architecture and contemporary art.

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