Sound — 8
Well four years is quite a wait for the fans, who are perhaps small in numbers but are amongst the most enthusiastic followers in the world. DoomSword had a string of three high quality albums(and a nasty habit of releasing them in four year gaps) and in 2011 they return with the eagerly expected The Eternal Battle. The album starts off tenuously with Varusschlacht, which almost teases you with the intro but when that is over and the spoken lines and chants begin you will know that's DoomSword, just as strong as before.The band has evolved from the initial doom influenced sound to more of a Manowar type, being faster and somewhat more aggressive than on the early albums.In fact a good part of The Eternal Battle is on a lively uptempo mood, though there are a few suspended, half time feel interludes that will certainly remind some of the days of their debut and Resound The Horn. The riffs themselves are still in the same vein, pedal note plus hook and usually a harmonized lead over that. The two together make a powerful combination of a strong rhythm guitar and a melodic lead guitar(both have that wonderful, greasy, drive tone), coupled with that a prominent bass. Alessio Berlaffa aka Sacred Heart is now the sole guitarist in the band since Maurizio Bugin aka The Forger left the band back in 09, and Berlaffa should be commended on a great performance on The Eternal Battle. However my personal commendations go to the drummer, WrathLord. His energetic performance is a good part of DoomSword's unique sound, the bass drums hardly ever rest and yet their usage rarely spoils the rhythmic aspect of the songs. Being epic and sometimes even dramatic is what Doomsword is abut and they do just that right from the opener, Varusschlacht, to the closer, WarLife.
Lyrics — 8
DoomSword's lyrics have always revolved around mythology, folk tales and of course battles. It seems that every other word coming from Deathmaster's mouth is "battle". Honestly even I found this a bit overwhelming at times, battle this and battle that after a while sound more sterile than inspired. It takes an acquired taste to fully digest DoomSword's lyrics but you don't need an acquired taste to fully appreciate Deathmaster's vocals. To lift the veil of suspicion amongst those who think that clean vocals are a dying thing in metal, DoomSword uses clean vocals, except for a few hearty battle shouts. Though Deathmaster has a strong range he sounds best, as you will find out, on the lower part of that spectrum. I'm not saying that he is breaking up in the higher range but there he lacks some of the "roundness" he has on the lower range.
Overall Impression — 8
I believe that DoomSword has made an great album and that it was worth the wait, however it does not surpass Let Battle Commence and My Name Will Live On and that was my secret hope.I concede to the disappointment but at the same time I can't deny that it has been a hell of a ride, which I both as a fan and as a "critic" have enjoyed. There are a lot of good songs but I will recommend the following: "Song of the Black Sword", "Soldier of Fortune" and "Eternal Battle".