Time for the seventh Heaven Shall Burn full-length album, a band which caused my attention back in 1998 with their first EP title ”In Battle There Is No Law”, a clear tribute to my beloved Bolt Thrower. It’s been fifteen years since then and if you have followed them closely, you can tell that they surely have grown up to sound more mature than ever. Many fans claim that they have released some epic albums in the ’00s like ”Whatever It May Take” (2002) or ”Antigone” (2004) and none can blame them. There was always something in this band that prevented me from liking them a lot but this new album entitled ”Veto”, really caught me by surprise.

Three years after the release of ”Iconoclast”, the Germans return with an album of great variety in sounds and rhythms, without losing heaviness and even some more melodic approached tracks like the initial track ”Godiva” (lady Godiva is on the album’s cover from a painting of John Collier in 1898) may bring some new fans to the band, after all there are many bands from Sweden for example which use their patternized melodies much worse than HSB. The hard riffs are always there and the Bolt Throweresque beginning of ”Fallen” (might also remind of Amon Amarth to some others) or the fury of the German lyrical ”Die Stürme Rufen Dich” will bring a very pleasant initial taste of ”Veto”.

Even ”Hunters Will Be Hunted” which lasts six minutes and is the longest track of the album, is another sample that HSB have worked this album very deep and despite the three year absence, they are giving you an album that is likely to become one of your favourites for 2013. ”You Will Be Godless” is another furious sample where the band sounds enraged beyond the limits, and then comes the suprise of the album, the cover of Blind Guardian’s ”Valhalla”. They are always used in offering covers, but none can say he waited for this one, which is also strangely successfull and also features Hansi himself on vocals.

There is also another surprise if you buy the deluxe edition, as it contains a cover of ”European Super State” of the enormously affective Killing Joke, a track recorded in the album ”Absolute Dissent” three years ago. A good effort in a difficult track which doesn’t suit the band too much but they pay a good tribute to the elders. The standard edition closes with ”Beyond Redemption” which is the second largest track but also serves well to leave the ending credits balancing to the band’s side. Marcus Bischoff tears his throat as much as possible for almost fifty minutes in this album and offers a very convincing performance.

”Veto” is a well worked album for which HSB can dream a bright future. There are some killer tunes in here that will add power to their setlist and despite it took them a little more to create it, I think in about two years (hopefully) they’ll return with something new. They’ll have a difficult tusk to create something like ”Veto” which is rather refreshing, aggressive and with the right bits of melody where needed (unless you prefer tracks like ”Antagonized” which contain about everything).

* Read the interview with Heaven Shall Burn drummer Matthias Voigt here.

Track List Line Up
01. Godiva
02. Land Of The Upright Ones
03. Die Stürme Rufen Dich
04. Fallen
05. Hunters Will Be Hunted
06. You Will Be Godless
07. Valhalla
08. Antagonized
09. Like Gods Among Mortals
10. 53 Nations
11. Beyond Redemption
12. European Super State
Marcus Bischoff – Vocals
Maik Weichert – Guitar
Alexander Dietz – Guitar
Eric Bischoff – Bass
Matthias Voigt – Drums