Accept – Stalingrad – 2012
I think that more people than med was surprised when Accept released a new album – Blood of the Nations 2010. By then they had been kinda silent for 14 years. At least they hadn’t released anything during that time. I also think that we were a lot of people being surprised how good that comeback album was. We wanted more! At least I did! And 2012 we got more. That was the year Stalingrad was released. I was first in line to get this album. Well, maybe I wasn’t first but I really wanted it and had to get it. I was under the impression the Blood on the Nations was more of an exception and that the band couldn’t get out such a record one more time. Something that was that good and still sounded fresh. Of course, I was also curious about how Mark Torillo would hold up.
My worries were totally unwarranted. Mark Torillo was amazing on Stalingrad as well and there’s no need to crave for Udo Dirkscheider again. Accept had found a new vocalist that was and is perfect for the sound that Accept has made their own. That hard guitar-based riffy music. It is not extreme by any means if you compare it to what’s available on the market today. There are all kinds of bands with sounds that no one could even imagine back in the day. Stalingrad is now 10 years old when I write this and it still sounds fresh. It has aged with grace and it’s still a really good album. It’s traditional and classic heavy metal as it sounded in the ’80s but with better sound and production of course.
It’s music without compromise and that trademark male choir is as present as ever. I love that part of Accepts sound. I can’t say that I know of any other band that really uses it in that way? If you know any examples feel free to educate me because I’d really like to know! Stalingrad is not only hard and heavy though. There are well-composed songs and it’s pure genius to finish the title track with the Russian anthem! It’s not the first time (or last) that Accept incorporated classical music into their songs. Remember Für Elise on the Metal Heart album?
But with all that said, I don’t think it goes all the way to the highs of the previous Blood on the Nations album and I need to let that reflect on the rating. I don’t think it’s “tired” and there’s certainly nothing wrong with the riffs or guitars. It just seems like they haven’t found the melodies quite as good this time. It’s still an excellent album but I need to differentiate them from each other.