Marauder is a power metal group from Athens, Greece. They raided and pillaged their way into the underground way back in 1991 with a series of demo releases: Try to Live (1991), The Die is Cast (1993), Promo (1995). Since then the group has released five full length albums: Sense of Metal (1997), 1821 (2000), Life? (2004), Face the Mirror (2008) and Elegy of Blood (2012).
Upon first listen, Marauder’s latest effort sounds like part of the Hellenistic power metal movement that has been taking place throughout the Mediterranean the past couple of years but the group’s style is more thrash-oriented than a lot of their counterparts. Marauder also features a vocalist with a rougher edge than the typical melodic style vocalists the power metal groups tend to use. The final result is a powerful catchy sound that hooks you easily. The music is superb and reminds me a lot of early Meliah Rage or perhaps a slower tempoed Armored Saint.
However, there is a downside to the release and it can be found within the choruses. The choruses don’t always transition well with the music being played. They sound forced and often take away from a rocking riff. This is apparent on some songs more than others but more than once I caught myself turning up a song only to quickly turn it down as soon as the chorus kicked in. It was frustrating, I really wanted to like Marauder but I was left with the feeling, even after five full length albums, they are still unsure of what their sound should be.
Lyrically this group is simplistic yet effective. Although they follow the Hellenistic power metal trend of reliving Alexander’s glory days, Marauder isn’t afraid to branch out from those traditional themes to incorporate those of The Roman Empire, The Crusades and World War Two.
To summarise, Marauder is a band worth checking out. They are a group of seasoned musicians who seem on the cusp of putting it all together. The craftsmanship displayed on this record is first rate, a slight tune up of the choruses could put them on iPods everywhere; you’ve been warned. \m/
1. Elegy of Blood
2. The Great War
5. Roman Empire
9. Black Gold
10. World War II
Alexander Kostarakos – vocals
George Sofronas – guitars
Andreas Tsaousis – guitars
Thodoris Paralis – bass
Greg Vlachos – drums