PICTURE - Warhorse

Picture - Warhorse

13 songs
56:58 minutes
***** **
Artist Station


Picture are a traditional metal band from the Northern parts of the Netherlands. They were founded already back in 1979 and released seven albums between 1981 and 1987. Their third album Diamond Dreamer (1982) is considered their classic. After this busy period, the band went on hiatus until in 2008 the five Dutch musicians came back with a live album. Apparently this made them hungry for more, as Warhorse is already their second studio album after their comeback.

Somehow I get the impression as if Picture didn’t really take notice of their long absent years. Their music still sounds as if it had been recorded thirty years ago. Nostalgic minded people will have a jolly good time here, although it has to be noted that they quality is not always on the same level. The album has a grandiose start with four incredible smash hits where heavy metal and power metal are combined into an explosive cocktail. The music is blissfully unaware of contemporary trends and offers traditional metal that tastes strongly of Judas Priest. Occasionally the band sounds a little weirder, and the production isn’t absolutely great, but that should not be a problem with this kind of music. Especially the hymn Battle Plan fulfils all of its goals as an opener. The fourth track Edge Of Hell is flirting with the poser rock genre and reminds me a little of Mötley Crüe’s Looks That Kill. Not bad at all, but the preceding songs were more to my taste. After this, things slow down a little, which doesn’t work so well in this band’s case. I miss the previous sense of dynamics, and I could very well have lived the rest of my days without having to listen to My Kinda Woman. If you made it this far though, you will be rewarded with the ninth track The Price I Pay. This song is not exactly demanding, but straightforward and very catchy so that the melody will stick immediately. There are no further failures to be reported, but the band has at this moment laid its cards on the table, so don’t expect any more surprises, except maybe for Eternal Dark MMXI, a re-recorded version of a song that was already featured on the band’s fourth album. The band is acting here very cool, playing rock’n’roll reminding me strongly of Kiss.

Warhorse is certainly a good album that offers everything one expects of a classic heavy metal album. It’s therefore a shame that especially the middle part of the album can’t keep up with its beginning and end. Maybe the band should have opted for a shorter and therefore consequently crisper album.

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