I was lucky enough to follow LÖANSHARK since their early recordings. Despite the fact that today’s metal fan has the possibility to listen to wide range of bands, due to the widespread social media, there is always a chance that, because of such a plethora of bands around, some of the remarkable ones, to escape the fans’ radar.
Fortunately, that was not the case for LÖANSHARK. Those Catalans really have all the potential required to become not only the most widely discussed band of nowadays’ scene, but to send the message to other bands to follow their steps, too.
And the most excited issue is that although someone can trace some pure NWOBHM nostalgia here, this is not the exact description of the music herein. It is the NWOBHM of our decade.
Although their compositions strictly follow the NWOBHM patterns, they do not sound like a copy-paste band at all, nor just quite a retro effort. On the contrary, the result is a sound so fresh and traditional at the same time, which makes me wonder whether I have entered a time machine each time I am listening to this ‘machine gunner’ (and believe me there are quite a lot of times I have done this).
If someone asked me to suggest one album only which could represent the renaissance (or the comeback) of the NWOBHM, I would undoubtedly choose this one.
The solid guitars, the melodic bass lines, the furious drum playing and the a-la Biff Byford vocals create a flaming metal system as good as the early SAXON days. It is not an overstatement to say that albums such as POWER & THE GLORY, WHEELS OF STEEL, and DENIM AND LEATHER are not only very close to the band’s sound but that the band is capable to approach the quality of those albums.
Almost forty-five years after the NWOBHM eagle has landed the earth and changed this world forever, 2022 showcases (actually the album was released in late 2021) a new band, this time from Spain, able to carry on a legacy as good as its predecessors. In addition, this album is not recommended to SAXON die-hard fans only, but traces from bands like BITCHES SIN, early IRON MAIDEN (Paul Di’Anno era), JAGUAR, TYGERS OF PAN TANG, QUARTZ etc can de noticed throughout the whole album.
The band owns the required maturity already, so that all these elements that influenced those Spanish MWOBHM metalheads were assimilated in the band’s personal sound and ideas.
It is difficult to distinguish the best songs out of the eight presented here, but I think that “Black Leather Queen” and “Machine Gunner” are the album’s best moments.
NWOBHM and true metal maniacs, you should have worshipped this album already. This is the right way!
All songs are re-recordings of previous EPs and singles and, if you ask me, I equally enjoy both versions.
The band is so talented and enthusiast that they could provide two killer versions of each one of their compositions so far.
Actually, if I had to describe the album with one word only, I would say it is a stellar work!