The other night I saw a hard rock band and they were a lot of fun. At one point the singer said: “We are either super heavy or country”. Then she stopped and said: “Well we’re not Metallica or anything…..”

And heavy, you see, comes in many different forms. See, here is a band that is “super heavy” but Sorcerer aren’t like anything else either.

As a case in point, “Reign Of The Reaper” starts with “Morning Star” a massive sweeping soundscape about Lucifer, and it is as metal as anything, but it is accessible. That’s Sorcerer all over.

The title track then gets even darker, more grandiose, spoken words, but what a brilliant singer Anders Engberg is. Even if we are all going to hell, apparently. This is very much his record.

If they’re not conventionally “doom” or “classic” metal – although with touches of both – then they aren’t Power Metal either, albeit, swords are raised high into the battle in “Thy Kingdom Will Come” and you aren’t betting against them. The guitar work is stunning too.

Yes, there’s death, death, and more death all over this, but on “Eternal Sleep” this one is going to Paradise and it had some tender moments, and let us talk about the guitar playing once more. My goodness Kristian Niemann and Peter Hallgren have surpassed themselves.

“Curse Of Medusa” gets itself down a power metal road again and there is total majesty on show when it comes to “Unveiling Blasphemy” – this is many things, stripped down is not one of them. “Save us from the underworld” sings – and it’s important to note that all of this is conventionally sung, none of the growly nonsense that so blights other bands of this type – Engberg on “The Underworld” but no one is fooled. This is going down to the fiery depths the first chance it gets.

As it ends with “Break Of Dawn” it looks forward – with a glee – to “the pain of death” and maybe there’s a suggestion that it’s the same song eight times, but so what?

In every type of music, there’s a band that just does it better than anyone else, and that’s the case on “Reign Of The Reaper”. Sorcerer are the undisputed kings of whatever on earth – or in hell – this is.

Rating 9/10

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