Review of the Album Volume 14 by German Thrash Metal Band Tankard
Any Significance to the Album's Title?
“Volume 14” is the 14th studio album by famous German thrash metal band Tankard released in 2010 and I’m left wondering if there is any significance to this album other than the fact that it is the band’s 14th release. If you release 14 albums as a band, credit must be given for lasting as long in an industry that sees some bands disband after just a few years. If their 2008 studio album Thirst was their best one since Beast of Bourbon which isn’t that long of a gap, how good is this one, their 14th album?
Before we get into how good this album is, it must be briefly mentioned that Tankard has actually written the album’s title as Vol(l)ume 14 but I chose to write the title as Volume 14 to keep things grammatically correct and so that readers will have an easier time following along.
Rules for Fools Is a Song That Sees Tankard Perform Some Good Neoclassical Influenced Metal
“Rules for Fools” is a song that features some style experimentation that is influenced by the great Yngwie J. Malmsteen. Are these guys turning into a neoclassical metal band? No, they are not making a radical style change and they are just adding new elements into their music and this is a welcome addition for the avid thrash metal fan.
Time Warp the First Elite Song of This Album
But with the way that this album starts you would first get the idea that this is anything but thrash metal. The first song called Time Warp is about a man that was in a coma for about a month because he lost his job, he lost his girlfriend and he was badly injured. His life has been ripped apart by poverty. The song in the middle has a very creative riff as the other message the song tries to bring across is that the person described in the song vows to set things right and he vows to not make the same mistakes next time.
A Strange Moment in the Album Volume 14
Then things get a little strange in this album because there is a song called Fat Snatchers (The Hippo Effect). The song is actually about the fact that the food industry has a secret plan that makes people put more sugar into their bodies and they have a plan to make so much money off of people so that they become fatter and sicker. There is no wonder that products such as high fructose corn syrup are so widely marketed. Other than the song title itself, this song is still pretty decent.
Significance of the Songs Black Plague (BP) and Somewhere in Nowhere
Black Plague (BP) is a song about the BP oil spill as companies play with people’s lives all in the name and objective of getting as much profit as possible. There is a riff that sounds like a more modern day version of Metallica. Although this review is not being written to compare Tankard with Metallica, Tankard is an elite thrash metal band that has great riffs and lyrics that are highly intelligent and thought-provoking. Somewhere in Nowhere is an energetic song that tells the story of a man that went to a concert and had a few beers before he was to take his flight back home. Unfortunately, he was yelling and behaving too loudly so he gets kicked off of the flight. He is stranded and he is wondering how he can even get back home to his destination. He is finally able to get another flight back home but this one was more expensive than the one that he would have been on had he not caused a commotion.
Favorite Song on the Album Volume 14
What is your favorite song on the album Volume 14?
Even in 2010, Tankard Had Stuck to Their Brand of Thrash & Made It Highly Entertaining
Tankard even at this point in their careers were having so much fun that they even constructed a song that is a humorous look at the lifestyle of an aggressive partying heavy metal fan that just wants to head bang and mosh all night at a concert of their favorite band. This song is called Brain Piercing of Death and there is a definite Kreator kind of influence in the riffing of this song. Tankard has had a long history of lyrically having songs that talk about heavy metal fans that love to drink and party but their style of thrash metal is highly entertaining, much better than Mental Care Foundation for instance. And then comes the heavy and entertaining song called Condemnation. The song is about the fact that the mainstream media broadcasts so many negative news stories because that’s what the people tune into. They get involved with viewing negative news stories and this is what ends up making the most profit.
Final Thoughts About Tankard's Volume 14
How is Volume 14 as an album especially for Tankard standards? It is still creative, entertaining, and even a little more varied musically such as the Yngwie J. Malmsteen influenced Rules for Fools. Is this album better than Thirst? That is hard to say but Volume 14 is still very good. The strongest songs in this album include Time Warp, Rules for Fools, Fat Snatchers (The Hippo Effect) Black Plague (BP) and The Agency.
Rate the album Volume 14 by the Band Tankard
© 2019 Ara Vahanian