ALBUM REVIEW: Elegant Weapons – Horns For A Halo
Photo Credit: Matt Owen
What do you get when some of the world’s best metal bands come together to record an album? Horns For A Halo by the metal supergroup, Elegant Weapons. With Vandenberg and Rainbow’s Ronnie Romero (vocals), Judas Priest’s Richie Faulkner (guitars), Uriah Heep’s Dave Rimmer (bass) and Accept’s Christopher Williams (drums), Horns For A Halo is an ode to the heavy metal of the 70s and 80s.
Kicking off this album with Dead Man Walking, Faulkner offers listeners a slice of what it takes to be a living legend. With his slick guitar riff opening the song, there is a lot of Judas Priest influence within this song. You cannot fault his skills and as the first song on the album, Faulkner shows off his skills and reminds listeners that metal is in fact cool. With blaring power chords and expert timing, this is top-tier guitar playing and it only gets better from there.
Whilst the album is pure fist-pumping throughout, Ghost of You sticks out the most. And for the right reasons. This song highlights Romero’s extensive skillset as a lyricist and vocalist. With a focus on lost love and memories, Romero’s harrowing “No I don’t decide when it ends, find your soul’s relief” reinforces the anguish people feel of having to let go. With smoky vocals and a de-tuned 1920s piano, this is a sublime track. With elements of the blues and metal blended nicely, Elegant Weapons know how to revive old sounds fit for a 21st-century audience.
Rounding off the album, the band finish with Downfall Rising. By far, this is what you expect from a metal supergroup of living legends. Blending elements of Judas Priest, Rainbow, Uriah Heep, Vandenberg and Accept, this is the anthem of the album. With heavy riffs and touching on the themes of religion (although not explicitly), Downfall Rising is the most like a Black Sabbath song. However, the band finds their own edge with this song with Romero’s impressive vocal range and charisma as he sings on this track.
To sum up the album, Faulkner describes it as “a mix of Jimi Hendrix, Priest, Sabbath, solo Ozzy and Black Label Society, but with a lot of melody, sort of old school and modern at once […] and actually down-tuned a whole step.” And that is a perfect way to describe Horns For A Halo. This is an album for those who love classic metal and have a bit of nostalgia for the 70s and 80s.
Standout Tracks: Ghost of You, Horns For A Halo, Downfall Rising
For Fans Of: Judas Priest, Panthera, Black Sabbath
Written by: Jo Lisney