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Classic Review: Helstar - Remnants of War
Remnants of War

Label: Century Media
Year released: 1986
Duration: 38:50
Tracks: 9
Genre: Heavy Metal

Rating: 4/5

Review online: September 15, 2005
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Readers Rating
Remnants of War

Rated 4/5 (80%) (27 Votes)

I bought this last year, didn't like it, sold it, and kept a burn. Well recently my new music budget has been a bit thin, so I've been hauling out a lot of old albums and giving them another go. For some reason, this album sounds a lot better to me now. So I was like: 'holy crap, maybe I was too hard on "A Distant Thunder"!' So I gave that one another listen and, well, it's still average. But this album is much better.

The production is better, for one thing, and the guitars are nice and heavy. Also, James Rivera is more in control, and the mix on his voice is better, so he sounds like he's actually in the band, rather than just making up vocals to go with some other album. He does some of his trademark wailing, but overall his performance is solid. Musically this is better-written than "A Distant Thunder", and the songs are sharper and more cohesive. The guitarwork, as always, is stellar, and this time the riffs and leads all seem to flow more strongly. Again, the weakness is that a lot of this sounds more or less the same, and while the songs han together better than on previous albums, they still aren't very catchy. Part of that is due to the denseness of the arrangements, but part of it is just a lack of really good hooks. This is enjoyable while it's playing, but not really that memorable. "Nosferatu" was the best Helstar album, but this one is almost as good.

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Review: A Distant Thunder (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
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Interview with vocalist James Rivera on November 20, 2016 (Interviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
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