The art of war requires mastery. It is both invented and invited in many forms. War Cloud compiles these little lessons in a State of Shock. Together with their sophomore full-length album, they took a road of dissecting each variation through eight tracks which will be released on September 27th.
As the first attack, Striker, the siren announced what could be a global apocalypse. Only this alarm was drowned by the second sound—of drums. It was like a noise festival. The type of hurried beat when people wave different banners representing their colours. This intro was enough encouragement to dare and stand against whatever it is that suppresses us. The guitar was a veteran activist on its licks and whips. By this time I wanted to be a member of this uprising.
White Lightning was this classic power metal. It had the early styles of the genre. With variations in tempo and animated guitarplay much to my content, also the throw of words slightly reminded me of a typical X Japan song.
What I particularly like about Dangerous Game was the instrumental teamwork. The edges of guitar guided the vocal melody. Sometimes sliding onto rock, the drums insisted on doing its own thing, hammering the speed on and off. It was the combined firepower. The total fusion. Later on it became more like a limelight for the guitar alone. There was just this slow-tempo Metallica approach and proof that guitars could sing as well. It was a careful work which descents and rises up again.
Tomahawk had all gears engaged. Fullmetal death march is what it’s about. Just straight, unbridled unsheathing of musical weapons. A “thy archenemy hast befouled thou.” and the killer-guitarist comes into play via double-peds in Seeing Red. Only pure artful soloist could make guitars wail beautifully. It was a descriptive song. Fire-tip arrows in the night sky and clouds aflame. This mainly stressed the importance of guitar techniques.
Do Anything advanced the battle in a cool manner. It was this danceable all-or-nothing background sound you sing along to. Contagiously capable of getting the blood in your veins working and pumped up, if not, your heart rate in palpitation. There is a change in temperature and you crave for more guitar roundhouses. This is the lightsome metal complemented by a bitter cigar.
It makes you cringe in satisfaction at Means of Your Defeat. Just smokin’ guitar duo. Swaying your head to match this level of being high with music, it left a narcotic effect. It was a comic battleplay. It progressed like a motion picture, frame by frame with pauses every time an attack is made. Lastly was the State of Shock. Like a disciplined protocol, drums came first, then at last after all these solos, was some time for the bass, followed by of course the guitar. They all had a certain characteristic in this track. The guitar had a non-stop tendency, the drums was polemomaniac with every smothering beat, the vocals were unwounded by things of the physical and the bass was like a back-up just in case things don’t work out. There was a feeling of being free in this last song. In the midst of a war governed by the morals of metal music. Inevitably closing this final act with traces of an explosion.
State Of Shock was a ticking time-bomb. A competent army of sophisticated solos and compact vocals. It was a reminder that war can cause ruin and spring life simultaneously. A two-sided coin. An eight-part entertainment with your principal enemy.
Review by Estefan Malgret.