SINNER - THERE WILL BE EXECUTION - NUCLEAR BLAST
This is an ominous title. Will the album live up to it? Sinner has been serving heavy metal for over twenty years, but has never managed to break through - especially in North America. Making a headway might still remain elusive though, seeing that half the band band are full-timers in Nuclear Blast's other HM act Primal Fear. (Leader Matt Sinner and newly-returned guitarist Tom Naumann are in Primal Fear.) As such, many metal fans might still ask what the band sounds like. The situation is bound to improve given the domestic release of There Will Be Execution. The album kicks off with a punchy song called Higher Level Of Violence and continues the trend with There Will Be Execution and the oddly-titled Requiem For A Sinner. The latter has a metalling solo which comes and goes with too hasty a disposition. Die On Command is chunkier and reminds one of Black Label Society and Primal Fear crossed. Matt Sinner and co. have again produced an album germane to fans of Judas Priest, W.A.S.P. and Running Wild. Matt's self-production of the album is not a deterrent to the final product, the sound is clean. Finalizer is, again, faster and a little more adventurous in its temper. The lyrics are probably inspired by those composed more than ten years ago by Judas Priest. Locked & Loaded has a big guitar riff and a little more emphasis on vocal harmonies. God Raises The Dead is elevated by fine guitar work in its mid-section and cool lyrics in its chorus. The River is a slow song and Liberty Of Death a moodier song with some keyboards in the background and a chugging guitar. Incidentally, There Will Be Execution disposes elsewhere with keyboards, silly orchestrations and songs longer than four minutes. That is interesting to note given how Sinner has a full-time keyboardist in the form of Frank Roessler in its lineup. On Liberty Of Death Matt Sinner sounds identical to Rock 'n Rolf. Black Monday leads into album closer Crown Of Thorns which is the album's sole full-fledged ballad. The song is constructed in such a way that is bound to remind the listener of the slower W.A.S.P. songs There Will Be Execution is 45 minutes of heavy metal. - Ali "The Metallian"
SINNER - MASK OF SANITY - FOUNDRY
It took several listens before noticing that Mask Of Sanity ends with a Thin Lizzy cover version. The mention of the album’s closer is important because several times during playback Mask Of Sanity and Mat Sinner’s voice specifically will remind one of Thin Lizzy’s Phil Lynott.
This is a hard rock and heavy metal album with many traditional yardsticks and a solid sound that is only watered down by the occasional outburst of keyboards. It is a pity, but all is not lost. The latest album from the German hard 'n' heavy veterans is still worth buying and hearing for traditional hard rockers, The Other Side and Diary Of Evil are stimulating songs. The latter title is not a modified Ozzy tune, but has just enough catchiness to give the band a commercial potential. This is the album’s anthemic single. Thunder Roar and The Sign are weaker because of the keyboards and what passes off as an organ. Some may notice a Mötley Crüe reference on Thunder Roar as well. Under The Gun has a crappy keyboard lead part, yet the song still pushes forward in galloping style. No Return is a slow song and contrasted with the rest of the album’s mid-pace. Last Man Standing is next before the album ends with the Lizzy track.
Mask Of Sanity is heavy enough to be metal, yet packed with enough melodies and vocal layers and harmonies to fit into the metal mainstream mould. Saxon, W.A.S.P. and Running Wild have a brother who is a Sinner. - Ali “The Metallian”
SINNER - CRASH AND BURN - CANDLELIGHT
Crash And Burn is quite an odd title for a band that has been around on and off for 25 years. Sinner today is almost a side-project of Primal Fear, although this band has a much longer history than its more popular brother. Crash And Burn is a traditional heavy metal album. The band states as much itself. The title track is a prime example of blistering metal with the guitar going straight for the jugular. It is sure a well-done attack. The rest of the album features a lot of hard rock that sounds like a modern version of Thin Lizzy (Heart Of Darkness) with Lynott’s throat on the mike. There is a good bit of Gary Moore’s hard rock there too as well as Running Wild-type anthems. Aside from the forced slow song (Until It Hurts) Sinner 2008 is a nod to traditional British and German hard and heavy. - Anna Tergel