Ironflame – Blood Red Victory (Divebomb Records)

Tuesday, 11th February 2020
Rating: 8.5/10

Consisting of Andrew D’Cagna as the sole musician/songwriter in the studio, many are probably familiar with his work in other acts like Brimstone Coven and Icarus Witch on the short list – but Ironflame is another act to treasure. Releasing two previous albums, Blood Red Victory is the third full-length, another power/heavy metal effort that speaks to the heart of the genre. Smartly grabbing a couple of seasoned pros in Quinn Lukas and Jesse Scott to add their guitar break flair to the proceedings ensures upper echelon quality in that department – as Andrew can capably handle the foundation and execute all facets of his ideas into catchy anthems that resonate deeply with the faithful young and old to the genre.

Layers of speedy mid-tempo riffs and bursts of harmony support set the tone for “Gates of Evermore”, the concluding cultural thematic work majestic in splendor, while the follow-up track “Honor Bound” is a killer ode to the heavy metal genre as the music ebb and flows into anthem glory a la Visigoth, warriors wielding swords and banners held high. Punctuating proper phrases and key chorus moments through multi-part harmonization techniques, Andrew uses all facets of his impressive vocal range to convey the passion and emotion he has for this genre – “Graves of Thunder” and the epic-sounding “Blood Red Cross” showcasing his multi-octave ease and professionalism to hit all the right notes. Taking cues from a cross-section of US and European influences, Ironflame draw into many classic elements from the 70’s/80’s, as Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Savatage, Jag Panzer, and Dio are aspects that come into play through these eight songs. At 39 minutes Blood Red Victory contains just enough information to bang thy head while not exhausting its welcome – ensuring probably return engagement quicker than most records in this genre.

The third record of the last four years for Ironflame keeps the quality output on par with the previous effort. Andrew obviously has a lot of creative energy and desire to keep his abilities sharp and present – anyone into traditional heavy metal and old school US power songwriting would be well-advised to seek this record out and dig into the back catalog, as this is very catchy and holds up to the standards of this genre very well.

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