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I never know what to do with power metal on the site. Powerful clean singing and titanic melodic riffs still move units and put asses in seats, particularly in Europe, but I'm still less-than literate in the titans of the style.

That's why when I asked IO staffers Dan Lawrence and Richard Street Jammer if i should check out Rulebreaker the newest album by Germany's Primal Fear, their response was a flabberghasted "what are you waiting for?"

I was right to listen to their advice. Nearly 19 years of existence has honed Primal Fear into a fine-tuned metal delivery machine. Their approach is unequivocal and straight ahead. "In Metal We Trust" isn't just the title of their new single, it's the lead line in the chorus, and the melody of that chorus is also the lead guitar line.

Subtle? No. but that would be besides the point. Subtlety is the sound of peace, and Primal Fear is music to make war to.

From bassist/vocalist Mat Sinner:

"'In "Metal We Trust' combines the early vibe of Primal Fear songwriting with all we’ve learned over the past years and our current production status & skills. Enough space for all the guitarists to deliver some great shredding and Ralf’s vocal trademarks, German traditional metal speed with a pounding production & sound - enjoy!"

Pounding, indeed. Those drums are as loud as a cannonade. Primal Fear make music by dyed in the wool metalheads for dyed in the wool metalheads. Who needs crossover appeal when you have riffs? not I.

—Joseph Schafer

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Rulebreaker drops on January 29 via Frontiers Music SRL. Pre-order it here for physical and here for digital. Follow Primal Fear on Facebook and Twitter.

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