Henk : Savage Machine is a Danish band that has been active since 2010 but waited until now to release their debut album. ‘Abandon Earth’ was produced by Tommy Hansen who previously worked with Helloween, Jorn and Pretty Maids. No amateur there. The very well drawn artwork was made by Mario E.Lopez who previously worked for Iron Maiden, Megadeth, King Diamond and Metal Church. The band immediately tackles the important peripheral issues with these names.
In the end, however, it's all about the music and also this very well executed. Savage Machine has dared to make a concept album about a time when man and machine fight their war in a post-apocalyptic era. The earth is dead and the only salvation of mankind is to move to space to look for an existence there. This story is packed in ten qualitative metal songs in which influences from Maiden, Megadeth and Nevermore can be heard. ‘Exodus’ kicks off the story in which it becomes clear that there is nothing left to save on earth, but the question is asked what one will find in space except darkness. In ‘The Age Of Machines’ it becomes clear that mankind has caused the war with the machines themselves and that it is time to leave the earth. The story becomes increasingly grimmer as the album progresses, but I will not reveal the outcome here yet.
The music of the band can be best described as technically advanced modern heavy metal in the style of the aforementioned bands. Singer Troels Rasmussen has a sound reminiscent of the late Warrel Dane. A sound that fits perfectly with the dark story. The songs differ greatly from each other in tempo and atmosphere. ‘The Hunter’ and the short fast ‘Event Horizon’ are very heavy where a song like ‘Time Traveler’ builds on its exciting structure. Beginning as a semi ballad, this song builds up more and more tension which results in a fantastic guitar solo of which lead guitarist Jacob has more on this album. ‘Behind The Veil’ is the semi acoustic resting point and one of the highlights on the CD.
Generally, the production of this album is of a high level. If there is already a small minus, then it is the drum sound. That could have sound fatter and less digital. With this debut the band showcases their opportunities and without immediately calling this 'the next big thing' Savage Machine delivers with this ‘Abandon Earth’ a signal that metal is not dying at all. New talent is coming and Savage Machine is at the forefront.