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Enforcer: From Beyond

Sweden’s trad ragers show their (stained) class

Enforcer sound like they’ve been plucked out of the 80s and thrust upon the 21st century, so convincing is their paean to speed metal’s heyday.

Fast-as-fuck playing, high-pitched vocals and technically tight soloing is the order of the day and is executed like a white-knuckle ride, but this fourth offering throws up moments that pinpoint these Swedes’ maturation from reckless party animals to experienced songwriters.

Take a listen to the neo-classical strumming of Undying Evil and Hungry They Will Come, pushing the otherwise predictable early Metallica riffs down a less obvious path, and with the titular From Beyond Enforcer have crafted one of the best choruses of their career.

Even at their most tried-and-tested, on the furious Hell Will Follow or opening bruiser Destroyer, they smash every note and channel influences from eastern European acts like Credo and Magnit to Mercyful Fate, Angel Witch and Scorpions, always keeping it unabashedly, indulgently and authentically 80s – and trademarking Enforcer as exemplary champions of the New Wave Of Traditional Heavy Metal./o:p