RSS Feed


AOR Heaven (2015)
Rating: 8.5/10

Ammunition is the brainchild of former Wig Wam vocalist Åge Sten Nilsen (aka Glam), and pretty much begins where the Norwegian rock act finished in 2014 after some 13 years in the business.

Together with his long-term writing partner Erik Mårtensson from Sweden’s Eclipse and W.E.T., Nilsen has drafted in the talents of guitarist Jon Pettersen (Bad Habits), bassist Hal Patino (King Diamond, Pretty Maids), drummer Robban Bӓck (Eclipse, W.E.T., Sabaton) and keyboardist Lasse Finbråthen (Circus Maximus, Mindtech, Wig Wam). The result is a reasonably weighty hard rock gallop featuring catchy hooks, memorable choruses and a muscular guitar sound.

Ammunition soar high upon a wave of intriguing keyboard injections and surprising heaviness, which immediately makes itself known with the chugging chorus of opener ‘Silverback’; the track pretty much setting the tone for the rest of the album. As expected, Nilsen’s voice provides that nice mix of soulful power and lower tempo tone, while the twin guitar attack of Pettersen and Mårtensson adds that steely grit to proceedings, and for me it’s these guys which are the stars of the show.

Of course, it doesn’t merely take a strong guitar sound to make an album work – the songwriting here is well-crafted too – but those of you who like the heavier side of melodic rock are just going to revel in the crunchier waters of ‘Give Me A Sign’ with its potent vocal row, and major rager ‘Hit Me (With Your Bombs)’ with its plodding introduction of fiery leads and extra gravel-coated vocals. If anything, Ammunition has carved out a sound that wouldn’t have sounded out of date in the early 90s. There’s a fantastic energetic mix of glossy yet fat sleaziness and grunge-orientated melody, and I’m just loving the glam rock-styled stomp of ‘Do You Like It’ with its combination of softer, sexier tones and driving harder edge.

For some straight-up blazing hard rock, look no further than the fabulous title track with its jangling guitar quirks, and the AC/DC-styled fizz of ‘Tie Me Down’ which also has a Guns N’ Roses type of swagger about it. Ammunition implements so many styles within the basic framework of ballsy hard rock that it’s impossible to stop the foot tapping and head nodding. Nilsen has never sounded so enthused, and his bandmates do their best and more to complement his powerful style which effortlessly graces the rattling barrage of ‘Another Piece Of Me’, while ‘Heart’s Not In It’ is a cool bluesy twang that builds with such soulful grace that by the time the chorus hits, we’re already along for the ride on this rock ’n’ roll train. Shanghaied closes with ‘Strung Out’, which has such an addictive hair metal chorus that you’ll be humming it for weeks after.

While fusing all that is cool about Scandinavian rock with traditional rock bullishness, Ammunition comes out firing on all cylinders for a debut album that is sure to get you hot under the collar with every sizzling number.

Neil Arnold

<< Back to Album & EP Reviews

Related Posts via Categories