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Review: Herman Frank - Right in the Guts
Herman Frank
Right in the Guts

Label: Metal Heaven
Year released: 2012
Duration: 53:50
Tracks: 13
Genre: Heavy Metal


Review online: July 9, 2012
Reviewed by: Larry Griffin
Readers' Rating
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Rated 3.96/5 (79.23%) (26 Votes)

Herman Frank's first album Loyal to None was one of the best metal albums of any genre of the last few years, and it was going to be a tough job to surpass it. I had my doubts as to whether the project would continue at all after Jioti Parcharidis left the vocals spot wide open, so epochal was his performance on that album, but it turns out Herman Frank has soldiered on with At Vance vocalist Rick Altzi for his sophomore album Right in the Guts, which is not so much an album title as it is a description of what's about to happen to you when you press ‘Play.'

This is easily within a hair as good as Loyal to None. It's a little bit less kinetic and energized, but only in comparison to its predecessor – where the first album was a wild bonanza of shredding guitars, searing, epic riffs and insane screaming vocals, this one is toned down to a more traditional German-style power metal album in the mold of Paragon, Running Wild and Primal Fear, albeit refined in light of the genre's 30 year history as well as Frank's 30 years of experience.

Altzi isn't Jioti Parcharidis, either, and his performance isn't as unhinged as Parcharidis was on that album. He has a good voice, though, with a solid husky mid-range and a cool, professional tone, and only suffers from not being Parcharidis. Frank really has a knack for getting the best out of these singers. So really, the only complaints about this come from the fact that it isn't genre transcending like Loyal to None. It's more genre defining, which is just one small notch below that. On Right in the Guts you get a host of big, stomping riffs and anthemic sing-along choruses the way only the Germans can do it. The production is loud and clear and heavy as an anvil. Pretty much every song kills, and though it could be trimmed down to 9 or 10 songs instead of 13, it's still a blast to listen to. Killer tracks like "Roaring Thunder," the anthemic title track, the epic "King's Call" and the speedfest of "Waiting" blaze through the speakers like miniature hurricanes, all of them.

If you love heavy metal in the German style, Right in the Guts is a prime choice. Herman Frank is a treasure of heavy metal and does everything good about the genre in his own inimitable style. Go listen to this or be forever a poser.

More about Herman Frank...
Review: Fight the Fear (reviewed by Bruno Medeiros)
Review: Fight the Fear (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: Loyal to None (reviewed by Larry Griffin)
Review: Right in the Guts (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: The Devil Rides Out (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: Two for a Lie (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: Two for a Lie (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
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