"No More Hollywood Endings" (Nuclear Blast; 2019)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

When I first received the promo packet for Battle Beast's new album, "No More Hollywood Endings," I got the impression that I was looking at a Finnish band whose sound was along the lines of the legendary Judas Priest, a heavy metal band in the classic British sense with fat riffs and pure metal sound.

That's the problem with first impressions: Usually, they're simply just not right.

"No More Hollywood Endings" is an entertaining blend of power metal and AOR. The songs are big and, for the most part, heavy but they don't have that added harder edge that heavy metal bands like Judas Priest and Iron Maiden do. You can much easier imagine something from "No More Hollywood Endings" being played on the radio than "Two Minutes to Midnight," for example. And this doesn't just have to do with the music, which features some pretty heavy keyboard work, but with the lyrics, which are suprisingly accessible and relatable. Although the incendiary "Piece of Me" isn't going to get much mainstream play with lyrics like "Hey, girl, what's going on?; The fire is burning hot; No use to make this up; We're gonna go and fuck shit up."

Being radio-friendly isn't a bad thing in this case. I only mention it for definition purposes. I enjoyed "No More Hollywood Endings" with its epic sound, its use of instruments not usually heard in the genre (the violins at the beginning of track 2, for instance) and I found the extremely cinematic "I Wish" absolutely intoxicating, a rarity since it's the slowest song on the album. The rest of the songs on the album are sprawling, epic numbers. So big, in fact, that they may actually turn off some listeners.

If you like your music bigger than life, you need look no further than Battle Beast and "No More Hollywood Endings."

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.


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Copyright 2019 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.