Scream Maker – Land of Fire (Frontiers Music)

Monday, 10th July 2023
Rating: 8 / 10

Polish heavy metal band Scream Maker arrived on the scene in 2010 – releasing three full-length albums plus one EP over the course of their history. Playing over three hundred shows in their country and abroad, they’ve been able to perform with many legendary acts like Judas Priest, Megadeth, Saxon, Stratovarius, and Nightwish among others. Land of Fire is the group’s fourth studio album, featuring eleven new songs of classic, anthem-oriented material designed to get fist flying high in the air with audience members screaming / singing along to those tailor-made melodies.

The twin axe attack of Michal Wrona/ Bartosz Ziolkowski certainly make their presence known through crisp, galloping riffs as well as solid lead break skills. Check out the uplifting charge throughout “Can’t Stop the Rain” or “A Nail In the Head” to understand these musicians affinity for all things Maiden, Priest, or Saxon bound. Dynamic diversity also allows the quintet to achieve outside the box twists – the calmer, acoustic strains for “Zombies” that mutate into an Accept-like mid-tempo electric anthem a first half standout. Many will be more than impressed by the multi-octave pipes of singer Sebastian Stodolak as he can hit those upper falsettos or leather lung vocal hooks that influences like Bruce Dickinson, Graham Bonnet, and Rob Halford treasure. One airing of “See the Light” or the highway cruising, harmony-fueled “Dark Side of Mine” tells the tale of serious talent that understands the smaller inflection/ personality details showcase a bluesy prowess that is definitely worthy of praise. You can also sense a bit of 80’s classic hard rock/AOR-based ethics in certain spots – the title track especially containing many dive bomb, tapping, or chugging guitar passages that are cut from an older Dokken/ Van Halen cloth amidst some heavier, staccato-driven action.

Scream Maker possesses those natural songwriting / execution mannerisms to garner modest attention, especially if given the chance to expose their music to the right festival gatherings. Land of Fire as such is a testament to the longevity of traditional, power-driven heavy metal.

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