U.D.O – Touchdown

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Atomic Fire Records

Release Date – August 25th 2023

Review by Smudge

Udo Dirkschneider – the name is synonymous with heavy metal whether it’s with Accept or Drikschnieder or here with U.D.O, you know what you will get. Quality world-class metal! He does not disappoint.

Udo’s son Sven rattles out a warning and we’re off on opener ‘Isolation Man’ where guitarists Smirnov and Dammers give us some taught riffage then that raspy belligerent voice comes through. It’s punchy and classic Udo but just wait for the guitar solo which is blinding. ‘The Flood’ gets your head banging thanks to the pounding rhythm of young Sven and Udo’s old Accept sparring partner Peter Baltes and his trusty Fender Precision bass. We get some class melodic metal on ‘The Double Dealers Club’ before ‘Fight For The Right’ shows that Udo can still write stirring anthems and boy do guitarists Andrey Smirnov and De Dammers have the most fun – I won’t spoil it for you but you’ve gotta hear it.

‘Forever Free’ gives us a mid-paced grind before the darker moodier ‘Punchline’ where Udo uses his whole voice then we get some more hard-driving metal on ‘Sad Man’s Show’ and more of those fantastic riffs and fills. ‘The Betrayer’ is almost thrash all nasty and jagged then we get the galloping chug fest of ‘Heroes Of Freedom’ and more melodic metal with ‘Better Start To Run’. Udo can write fist-pumping horn-throwing metal in his sleep, but he was wide awake when he wrote ‘The Battle Understood’ and ‘Living Hell’. Save the best until last – the mighty thrash of the title track – fast as a shark? Fast as fuck! This is rapid and vicious with some more stunning guitar work.

If you look back at Udo’s career catalogue it’s filled with consistently good releases, and this is another that will sit happily amongst the others. I wouldn’t want to choose his set list after this one though.

»Touchdown« – Track Listing:

01. Isolation Man
02. The Flood
03. The Double Dealer’s Club
04. Fight For The Right
05. Forever Free
06. Punchline
07. Sad Man’s Show
08. The Betrayer
09. Heroes Of Freedom
10. Better Start To Run
11. The Battle Understood
12. Living Hell
13. Touchdown

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