Royal Hunt: XIII - The Devil’s Dozen

Danish-American survivors’ keep their public happy.

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Since the return of DC Cooper’s distinctive vocal tones to Royal Hunt’s line-up, these Danish symphonic metallers have found themselves creatively reinvigorated, and the wonders of crowdfunding have facilitated this (can you guess?) 13th album, which returns once more to a reassuringly familiar stylistic template.

So Right So Wrong and A Tear In The Rain feature a winning metallic riff in an orchestral swell, building the platform for an insistent, trademark wind-in-the-hair chorus. And while the plot thickens a little on Riches To Rags’ flute-strewn prog tempo, their natural habitat is melodic, foot-on-the-monitors, wind-machine-in-the-hair metal.

The 50-minute running time for an eight-track album reflects their penchant for turning every song into a mini-epic, and while only Until The Day’s power balladry comes close to a change of pace, Royal Hunt are clearly giving their audience what they want, and it will surely be gratefully received.

Johnny Sharp

Johnny is a regular contributor to Prog and Classic Rock magazines, both online and in print. Johnny is a highly experienced and versatile music writer whose tastes range from prog and hard rock to R’n’B, funk, folk and blues. He has written about music professionally for 30 years, surviving the Britpop wars at the NME in the 90s (under the hard-to-shake teenage nickname Johnny Cigarettes) before branching out to newspapers such as The Guardian and The Independent and magazines such as Uncut, Record Collector and, of course, Prog and Classic Rock