BODYGUERRA - Invictus cover art
  • 4.5/10
    BODYGUERRA - Invictus - 4.5/10


Label: Fastball Music
Release date: September 15, 2023

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

Invictus is the third studio album by German Hard Rock band Bodyguerra. They formed in 2010 by guitarist Guido Stoecker. The band’s sound is based around melodic hooks, piercing guitar riffs, big choruses, and infectious grooves. Invictus marks the second collaboration of Stoecker and vocalist Ela Sturm as a songwriting team; the first was for the band’s second album, Fire & Soul (2021).

The Good and the Bad

First of all, it’s great seeing women tackle Hard Rock and Heavy Metal music, considering years ago, those genres were mostly dominated by male singers / musicians. Another highlight of the album would be the rhythm section with thumping bass lines and groove-laden drumming. For example, “Twilight” is an absolute beast of a track and has elements of Speed Metal. Production-wise, Invictus is a good sounding album too.

However, the album is far from perfect for many reasons. A big downside would be Sturm’s vocals. She has a raspy voice that comes off as nasally and whiny, depending on the song. When in the lower register, like for the bluesy “She Bop” (Cyndi Lauper cover), Sturm’s vocals are bearable. When in the higher register, however, like for “Confident Woman,” that’s when to run for the hills.

Almost There, But Not Quite

The songwriting is average, as shown through the rebellious and immature “I Stop Listening to You.” The album’s first single, “C’mon, Tell Me” has a good hook, but it’s a typical stadium rocker that many bands have done before. While the guitar riffs on Invictus are solid, they’re not groundbreaking. Stoecker was heavily influenced by British Rock bands like Deep Purple and the riffs aren’t even close to Ritchie Blackmore’s level of genius. But, Stoecker gets some props for having his own style and taking inspiration from those that came before him. Also, the brief guitar intro for “Time Goes By” is pretty good and tasteful.

The album closes on a random hymn known as “My Mother Told Me,” which is a bonus track. The harmonies are nice, but most of the songs on Invictus are tough-as-nails and upbeat, while the closing track is mellow and soothing. It’s just a weird way to end the album and it doesn’t belong here. Songs like “Troublemaker” and “Devil’s Eye” are perfect for headbanging at shows, while “My Mother Told Me” is more suited for a church service.

Final Assessment

Invictus may be considered a great album to some, but not to others. It really depends on the listener because everyone hears things differently. While there are elements of an excellent band in Bodyguerra, they need more work in terms of making themselves stand out from their competition, besides having a female lead singer with a nasally voice.

Album Tracklist

  1. Blood and Stones
  2. Troublemaker
  3. Twilight
  4. She Bop (Cyndi Lauper cover)
  5. Confident Woman
  6. Devil’s Eye
  7. I Stop Listening to You
  8. Time Goes By
  9. Too Late
  10. C’mon, Tell Me
  11. My Mother Told Me (bonus track)

Band Lineup

Ela Sturm – lead vocals
Guido Stoecker – guitars
Robert Brenner – bass guitar
Jason-Steve Mageney – drums


  • Lana Teramae

    Lana is a reviewer at Metal Express Radio from Honolulu, Hawaii. She's always had a passion for music, but she didn't get into Hard Rock and Heavy Metal music until she discovered Rick Allen's story in the summer of 2019. She was inspired by his determination to play drums for Def Leppard again after losing his left arm in a car accident. From there, her tastes expanded to other bands such as AC/DC, Bon Jovi, Metallica, Judas Priest, Saxon, Cinderella, and Overkill. Aside from listening to music, she loves watching YouTube and writing on her personal blog.

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