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Review: Rocka Rollas - The War of Steel Has Begun
Rocka Rollas
The War of Steel Has Begun

Label: Stormspell Records
Year released: 2015
Originally released in: 2011
Duration: 1:04:07
Tracks: 15
Genre: Speed Metal

Rating: 3.25/5

Review online: November 14, 2020
Reviewed by: Mjölnir
Readers Rating
The War of Steel Has Begun

Rated 3.4/5 (68%) (5 Votes)

Rocka Rollas were the starting vehicle for mainman Ced, these days better known for his later projects such as Blazon Stone and Breitenhold. I'm not too familiar with his work, but I understand that most of it works in that Helloween/Iron Maiden/Running Wild-inspired vein of '80s Speed Metal, so it's pretty logical that his very first work would also be in that vein. With song titles like "Metal the Posers to Death" and "More Metal than Steel", you probably have a good idea of what this is going to sound like: frenetic songwriting, blazing riffs and leads, and the wailing vocals of Ced, only slowing down for rockier stomps like "Fight for the Loud". Unfortunately, this suffers the problems you'd expect from a debut, namely that the songs themselves aren't too notable outside of some cool moments scattered about, none of which will leave much impression after it's all passed. Some songs like "Barbaric Attack" and "Heavy Metal Kings" are also hobbled by gruff backing vocals which are meant to make it sound more badass but end up making it sound silly with how weak they are. I have the Stormspell reissue of this, which contains bonus tracks that are actually better than the rest of the album, with stronger songwriting and tighter playing that sounds like it's coming from a more experienced band. Of course, that fact suggests you'd be better off sticking with Ced's later material, as in the context of his career, this sounds like it serves more as a humble beginning than anything else.

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