Looking back through the archives of SoT reviews, one band has somehow surprisingly slipped through the cracks and not made it onto our pages. The German metal band Accept has been cranking out its brand of metal since 1979, before disbanding in 1997. While getting back together on a limited basis to tour in 2005, lead singer Udo Dirkschneider has been spending most of his time concentrating on his other band, U.D.O. In October of 2004, U.D.O. released the title Thunderball.
Thunderball somehow finds a way to mix in the classic metal sounds of the 80's with the more updated Euro metal sounds of today. Having never heard Accept or U.D.O. before, my first impression of UDO would be a comparison to bands like AC/DC and Saxon. To the metal fan that has had little exposure to Accept or U.D.O., there are definite similarities in the vocal styles of Udo Dirkschneider and Brian Johnson of AC/DC.
As for the songs themselves, just about every song on the CD is a highlight, especially "The Arbiter", the very AC/DC like "Pull The Trigger", and the Saxon/Priest-like "Fistful Of Anger". Possibly the most interesting (in a good way) song on the CD is "Trainride In Russia", complete with accordion, polka sound, and phrases in Russian. It was written as a dedication to the great metal fans of Russia, and to U.D.O. and Accept's success there.
U.D.O.'s lineup consists of Udo himself on vocals, Stefan Kaufmann and Igor Gianola providing the double axe attack on guitar (and doing a great job on "The Arbiter" and "Pull The Trigger", et al), Fitty Wienhold on bass, and Francesco Jovino on drums. What U.D.O. has created on Thunderball is certainly a heavy metal treat for those looking for a throwback to an era of great metal, mixed in with some influence of the more updated metal sounds of today.
2. The Arbiter
3. Pull The Trigger
4. Fistful Of Anger
5. The Land Of The Midnight Sun
6. Hell Bites Back
7. Trainride In Russia (Poezd Po Rossii)
8. The Bullet And The Bomb
9. The Magic Mirror
10. Tough Luck II
11. Blind Eyes