Battle Beast deliver many of the great elements of traditional heavy metal with the slick sound of the modern day studio. The quality of the guitar riffs and solos are Battle Beast’s strength. But the main asset is Noora Louhimo’s voice. Louhimo has a versatile range that goes from harmonious to raw. At her best, Louhimo is a female hybrid of Udo Dirkschneider and Saxon’s Biff Byford. At her most extreme, she’s a shrieking Halford from the Painkiller-era.

If Battle Beast has a fault it’s that the song production can be too slick — when the chorus becomes too choreographed, the keyboards too dominant, and the bite of the guitar recede. For instance, a song like “Machine Revolution” has too much of a synth feel and not enough guitar punch. This kind of atmosphere waters down any metal song.

Battle Beast is at its best with cutthroat songs like “Raven” and “Fight Kill Die” (talk about Painkiller-era Priest!) or straight-forward metal. When over-production kicks in it takes the intensity out of it. Therefore, Battle Beast is an album made of songs that are easy to obsess over, with a few parts that will need to be tolerated.

Label: Nuclear Blast