Band – Iron Hunter

Album – Mankind Resistance

Country of Origin – Spain

Genre – Heavy/Power Metal

Release Date – July 13th, 2018

Label – Fighter Records

Author – Johnny The Fox

The only ambiguity associated with a band such as Iron Hunter would be that which is inherent in their band name. Are they a bunch of dauntless deer hunters trying (with great difficulty) to climb their treestands while wearing full coats of medieval armor? Or are they merely hunters OF iron, in which case might they be better off simply visiting a steel mill or strolling the shores of Lake Superior for iron ore deposits? But all snarkiness aside, Iron Hunter refuses to mince words, music, or imagery — they are an old-school heavy metal band, subtlety and originality be damned.

This Spanish traditional metal quintet are the brainchild of drummer Alex V and singer Emi, of the more established acts Mileth and Witchfyre. Looking to form a new band that aligned with their power-metal roots, Alex V and Em forged (no pun intended) Iron Hunter’s sound in the furnace of bands such as Riot, Running Wild, and Helloween. But Mankind Resistance sounds more like the classic meat-and-potatoes British metal of Maiden and Priest, some crunchy grooving riffs ala Accept, as well as a healthy dose of moderately-speedy ‘90s Euro power metal such as Iron Fire or Hammerfall; Emi’s nasally, upper-register falsetto even closely resembles Hammerfall’s Joacim Cans. Unsurprisingly, this album is chock full of mid-tempo sing-a-long anthems, fiery solos, predictable song structures, and more metal lyrical cliches than a renaissance festival.

But here’s the thing: Iron Hunter’s songs are a hell of a lot of fun. These tunes compensate for what they lack in originality with sheer enthusiasm and crunchy, metallic power. Songs such as “The Deathbringer” and “Street Warriors” lend a burst of speed and sense of palm-muted urgency to the proceedings; “I’ll Die for You” and Blood, Fire & Steel,” meanwhile, are solid fist-pumping anthems. While Iron Hunter may not be breaking any sort of new ground on Mankind Resistance, their melodic and catchy brand of classic metal goes down like a smooth American lager in a sea of hoppy micro brews.

Highlights: “Street Warriors,” “Blood, Fire & Steel,” Starchaser.”

Rating – 3.5/5