JAG PANZER – Casting The Stones

JAG PANZER - Casting The Stones


Century Media
Release date: October 19, 2004

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One of America’s foremost Heavy Metal bands are back with a new full-length album, and a smasher it is! After Thane to the Throne and Mechanical Warfare, two albums of the “solid but too anonymous” kind, the quintet has finally released a worthy follow-up to 1998’s masterpiece Age of Mastery. The band has always delivered in terms of performance and production, and this time around the songwriting also really shines.

Except for “Cold” and “The Hearkening,” which are a bit on the average side, there are literally no bad songs to be found here. Guitarists and main songwriters Mark Briody and Chris Broderick have come up with a diverse and entertaining bunch of songs – ranging from the traditional and Iron Maiden-ish “The Mission (1943)” and “Achilles,” via the more progressive “Feast Or Famine” and “Starlight’s Fury,” the epic and orchestral “Precipice,” to the heavy and technical “Tempest” and “Battered & Bruised.” Their melodies are always present, and the use of backing vocals and keyboards work very well indeed, while never losing their trademark heaviness.

The trio of Briody, bassist John Tetley, and Scandinavian drummer Richard Stjernquist, possess enough power to lay more than one skyscraper in ruins, and with this in mind, I often catch myself wondering why George W. with the big ears has not put Jag Panzer on his terror watch list alongside Cat Stevens.

Lead guitarist Chris Broderick never fails to impress with his incredible technique and musicality and about every time he moves above the 12th fret on his guitar neck I get chills down my spine … and Harry “The Tyrant” Conklin again shows that he’s one of the most powerful voices in modern Metal. “Achilles,” “Feast or Famine,” and “Precipice” are three very good examples where Conklin showcases his voice. Also, drummer Stjernquist gets to show off a bit this time around, as the drums are more upfront in the mix. And by the Gods, the bright-bearded Swede delivers – listen only to the grooves of “Vigilant” or “Precipice” and the double-bass patterns of “Battered & Bruised”.

The Panzer’s are back, and back with a vengeance!


  • Torgeir P. Krokfjord

    Torgeir was a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio. After hearing Malmsteen's "Vengeance" on a guitar mag CD at the age of 12 or 13, he began doing hopeless interpretations of Yngwie licks and it just took off from there. After shorter stints at other zines he was snatched to Metal Express Radio in 2003. Alongside Yngwie, Savatage, WASP, Symphony X, Blind Guardian, Emperor, Arch Enemy, In Flames, Opeth, Motörhead, Manowar, and Queensrÿche are a quick list of musical faves. Torgeir is also guitarist in the Heavy/Prog/Thrash outfit Sarpedon.

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