Nima : Are you also longing back for the 80s and the hardrock and heavy metal in the way it was done back in the day? If so, then in Sacred Leather you’ll have yourself another great addition. In their own words, this American act has one single mission; to bring back the true essence of heavy metal. I’d say mission accomplished, because their debut LP ‘Ultimate Force’ brings you straight back to the early 80s. Dammit, if I had not known I could have sworn that we were dealing with an obscure band from those days. Think of the likes of Hittman, Spitfire, Alien Force, Glacier or Sword (the Canadian heavy metal that is) and co. and you’ll know what to expect.
The riffs, the song structures, the vocals and vocal melodies as well as the sound and production are all typically 80s, and the band has well succeeded in recreating the overall vibe of those days. By the way, the band is fronted by none other than Dustin Boltjes, aka Dee Wrathchild who mistreats the drums in Skeletonwitch among others, and the man has a strong, beautiful and typically 80s hardrock/heavy metal voice. Altogether this album is just one tasty chunk of pure nostalgia. I must say that not all tracks are of the same quality. The (semi-)ballad ‘Dream Searcher’ for example lacks the impact and with its playing time of over eight minutes is too lengthy and at a certain point boring. The same goes for the long (double) closer ‘The Lost Destructor / Priest Of The Undoer’; the instrumental second half of the song just doesn’t have what it takes in order to keep you focused and loses its strength, by which the album slowly and with some difficulty fades into its end. However, with songs such as ‘Power Thrust’, ‘Master Is Calling’, ’Prowling Sinner’ and the magnificent title track the album has plenty to offer for 80s fetishists like yours truly, and for the fans of aforementioned bands and more contemporary acts like Enforcer, Axxion, Split Heaven, Existance and co. Definitely a band to keep an eye on.