Reconvening with new drummer Gery Carbonnelle, French metallers Existance look set to give the remainder of 2021 a good swift kick up the behind with ‘Wolf Attack’.
Written by: gdmonline
ALBUM: Wolf Attack
LABEL: Black Viper Records
COUNTRY OF ORIGIN:
LINEUP: Julian Izard – vocals, guitars * Antoine Poiret – guitars * Julien Robilliard – bass * Gery Carbonnelle – drums
TRACK LISTING: 01 Highgate Vampire * 02 Deathbringer * 03 Power Of The Gods * 04 Rock N Roll * 05 Jenny’s Dream * 06 Sniper Alley * 07 Preacher Of Insanity * 08 You Gotta Rock It * 09 Wolf Attack * 10 Tears Of Fire * 11 Gwendoline
WEBLINKS: Site Link
This French band first came to my attention on the back of their 2016 ‘Breaking The Rock’, one of the heavy metal highlights of that year. The Glory Daze review was slightly late for publishing, but we certainly jumped on the French bandwagon, and joined in on the global acclaim for the band and album.
Despite the five-year gap between ‘Breaking The Rock’ and their latest effort ‘Wolf Attack’ (Oct 29th 2021), Existance were crushing it musically, they were touring regularly across Europe on numerous support slots before COVID struck, which put the brakes on every major band and artist. Reconvening with new drummer Gery Carbonnelle, Existance look set to give the remainder of 2021 a good swift kick up the behind with ‘Wolf Attack’.
[L-R] Julien Robilliard (bass) , Gery Carbonelle (drums), Julian Izard (lead vocals, guitars), Antoine Poiret (guitars)
Existance have two exceptional guitarists, a thumping rhythm section and a singer who can belt out the high notes and scream with the best of them. Those attributes were apparent on the last album and are repeated here to good effect.
In fact, these attributes kick in immediately on the lead-in track ‘Highgate Vampire’, it’s got a bit of everything that an HM fan would want, keeping very much to the heavier end of the spectrum. Chainsaw guitar riffs introduces second track ‘Deathbringer’. This one is the equivalent of a horse-drawn plough, turning over everything in its path.
‘Power Of The Gods’ is a track with exactly that in mind. The instrumentation is off the scale, the riffs are not only powerful, but fast and melodic too. ‘Rock N Roll’ keeps things to a traditional brand of metal which we’ve heard before from countless other bands over prior decades. In this case, Existance give us another glimpse of their songwriting capability. Its not all about blunderbuss and bravado.
‘Jenny’s Dream’ is another song that is not quite heavy metal in Existance’s pure form, but still has moments that convince. ‘Sniper Alley’ is the longest track here at six and a half minutes. The rhythm guitar and song structure reminds me a lot of a band like Fifth Angel back in their 80’s heyday. ‘Preacher Of Insanity’ picks up the tempo with gusto, the drum work accelerating things to headbanging speed, watch out for all that hair.
The twin guitars of Izard and Poiret dominate the power burn of ‘You Gotta Rock It’ and ensures this one sits loudly and proudly in anthem land, though the tempo slows during the solo section. There’s more massive guitar riffing on the title track ‘Wolf Attack’, and despite the slow intro, things finally get going, and that wolf is definitely moving at light speed across the tundra. Big vocal chants add to the occasion.
‘Tears Of Fire’ is the change-up moment on the album, a mournful piano leading off which keeps things in power ballad territory mostly, even as the melodic guitars phase in and out during the song’s run time. This one certainly has a point of difference. Existance deliver a dose of melodic metal on the album finale ‘Gwendoline’, it’s not an all-out firebrand finisher, but signs off with some sonic overload nonetheless.
There are some good moments here, probably not as consistently heavy as ‘Breaking The Rock’ but considering they don’t release albums that often I’ll take what’s on offer everyday of the week. There are a couple of songs that see Existance in a different light (Rock N Roll, Jenny’s Dream, Tears Of Fire) which suggests to me that they are branching out on the songwriting front, despite being around since 2008. A good compendium to ‘Breaking The Rock’, that there is no doubt.
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