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Pänzer - Fatal Command album review

All-star metal crew pay homage to the masters

Cover art for Pänzer - Fatal Command album

Pänzer feature musicians with connections to Accept, Hammerfall and Destruction, but don’t be tempted to wield the term ‘supergroup’. The band sound so coherent on Fatal Command, their second album, that any thoughts of this being a vanity project should be dismissed immediately. Since their debut album, Send Them To Hell, in 2014, guitarist Pontus Norgren has replaced Herman Frank, and brings his Hammerfall-style skills to bear, making the attack even more dynamic. You can hear the interplay with Destruction frontman Schmier’s vocals and V.O. Pulver’s guitar at its best on the title track, We Can Not Be Silenced and Afflicted. That old-school affection shines, through, as Pänzer get to grips with their celebration of early Accept and 70s Judas Priest. The entire album rattles along with passion and pace, and the brooding Skullbreaker is a stormer. This is classic style metal from true devotees.

Malcolm Dome had an illustrious and celebrated career which stretched back to working for Record Mirror magazine in the late 70s and Metal Fury in the early 80s before joining Kerrang! at its launch in 1981. His first book, Encyclopedia Metallica (opens in new tab), published in 1981, may have been the inspiration for the name of a certain band formed that same year. Dome is also credited with inventing the term "thrash metal" while writing about the Anthrax song Metal Thrashing Mad in 1984. With the launch of Classic Rock magazine in 1998 he became involved with that title, sister magazine Metal Hammer, and was a contributor to Prog magazine since its inception in 2009.