ALBUM REVIEW: Valkyrie’s “Fear”

ARTIST: Valkyrie + ALBUM: Fear + LABEL: Relapse Records + RELEASE DATE: JUL 24, 2020

Formed in Rockbridge County, Virginia in 2002, Valkyrie has since grown and developed a classic rock sound that is uniquely their own. Founding member Jake Adams was joined by his brother, Pete Adams (formerly of Baroness), in 2004. The addition of a second guitar and dual vocals helped push Valkyrie’s sound to the next level. Though the rhythm section has seen more than its share of members come and go since the band’s formation, the Adams brothers are now joined by Alan Fary on bass and Warren Hawkins on drums, completing the current lineup. Tomorrow, Valkyrie will release their 4th full length album, Fear, via Relapse Records.

Fear isn’t your typical garage band, rock n’ roll album. It’s more than that, a lot more than that. It’s a well thought out, well executed composition that you’ll want to keep on a steady rotation. The album consists of eight tracks, each blending the crunchy tones of classic rock n’ roll with the melodic harmonies of the modern-day rock movement.

The band has released three singles from the album leading up to this release,  “Feeling So Low,” “Evil Eye,” and “The Choice.” These tracks give the listener a glimpse of the masterful musicianship and exquisite atmospheres that can be found throughout Fear. The good news is that if you’ve heard these tracks and enjoy them, the rest of the album is just as good, if not better. “Fear and Sacrifice” incorporates faster tempos and technical riffing, while “Brings you Down” begins as a slower, bluesy offering that builds into a hard hitting rock assault. The album comes to an end with a chilling, instrumental arrangement titled “Exasperator.” From start to finish the tracks flow flawlessly, taking the listener on a compelling musical journey.

The band has fallen under the title of “southern rock,” but don’t let that fool you. Fear breaks down the walls of the southern rock genre and takes it to a whole new level. If you are a fan of any form of rock music, Fear offers a little something for everyone. It’s melodic and atmospheric, yet heavy hitting and in your face. The sound mix is melded perfectly, allowing each instrument and voice to stand out when the time is right. The vocals are clear, the rhythm section hits hard, and the guitar harmonies will melt your face off. With so many bands on our planet today, it’s hard to create a standout album. For me, Valkyrie has done that with Fear. I encourage everyone to give it a spin!

– Corey Smith


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