ACCEPT – Stalingrad

Mark Tornillo, vocals. No Udo, no Accept. He tries and he comes close. It’s almost like he was cultured in a teutonic A&R lab specifically for the task. They come out of the gate here charging hard and, as you would expect from such a high profile act with the label to match, they have the production values to back them up. But by the second (title) song, it starts to give way. There is no “London Leatherboys” or “Lovechild” or “Fight It Back” on this, though the construct comes to the fore occasionally. Overall, not a total disappointment if you’ve spent the last 28 years pining for something that wants to be Balls To The Wall, and for some reason you can’t just spin that record instead. The tracks here immediately sent me scurrying to hear the familiar hits that I know and love instead of the perfectly assembled facsimile that these guys are working right now. Dad metal on Nuclear Blast. Do yourself a total favour and start with Russian Roulette or BTTW and then come back here if you have to. Udo or gtfo! (Nuclear Blast USA, Brad Skibinsky

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