STONEGARD - ARROWS - CANDLELIGHT
Arrows was originally issued in 2005 by the Bells Go Clang company, but a year later is being given the re-release treatment by Candlelight Records, which has snagged the band for its roster. A couple of odd things, the label uses names like stoner, Metallica and Slayer as analogies for the band’s sound. Safe to say, Arrows is not exactly Reign In Blood, Master Of Puppets or doomy. Past that little quirk, the Norwegians are actually OK for what they are, which is a mixture of rock, modern hard rock with bouts of speed and heaviness. The best comparison perhaps is Corrosion Of Conformity of late. Throw in a couple of mallcore shticks and notes and Stonegard’s sound comes into focus. Oddly enough, as if more was needed, the group’s image is akin to a bunch of '80s headbangers. What gives?
The album’s sound is clear and powerful, although there is no masking the band’s drift through the never never land of multiple styles. The band has to stick to a niche, be it mallcore, hard rock or heavy thrashing. As it stands, both the 'radio' crowd and the metal community will have to pick and choose among the ten tracks provided. - Ali “The Metallian”