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Review: Hammerfall - The First Crusade
The First Crusade

Label: Nuclear Blast Records
Year released: 1999
Duration: 81 min.

Rating: 3/5

Review online: April 1, 2000
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Readers Rating
The First Crusade

Rated 2.8/5 (56%) (10 Votes)

I wasn't surprised to be a bit disappointed when I received this video.  When I learned that Hammerfall was releasing a video, I wondered what they would put on it, considering they only have two albums out.  Well, that's it.  They didn't really have much to put on this video, which surprisingly doesn't contain many songs from the band.  I would have at least expected more live footage.

There is some interesting material on this video, like their interpretation of Steel Meets Steel in Sweden in 1996 which landed them with a record deal.  Their first two videos, Glory To The Brave and Hammerfall are also shown.  While the video quality seems amateurish, the Hammerfall video is pretty good.  Another video of Glory To The Brave is also shown, and while it was more professionally produced, I have to side with the band in saying that what it shows has absolutely nothing to do with the song.

There are live recordings of The Metal Age and Stone Cold, and there you have it.  Only five complete songs are on the video, which is a great disappointment considering their repertoire.  The highlight has to be the release party of the Legacy Of Kings album, where former Accept vocalist Udo Dirkschneider interprets Head Over Heels and Balls To The Walls.  This is followed by Breaking The Law where guitarist Oscar Dronjak picks up the microphone and vocalist Joacim Cans handles the guitar.  Interesting.

Joacim and Oscar are the "hosts" of the video, presenting each segment in a mostly humorous manner.  They don't always seem comfortable, which is sometimes funny, sometimes a bit annoying :).  That sure shows that the guys are pretty cool though.  They've included a few bloopers toward the end of the video, I would actually have left some of those.  Hey, why not?

Overall, the video is ok.  I wouldn't say "go out and buy it", but Hammerfall fans will surely appreciate it.  Hopefully they'll eventually release a video with more material on it.

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