Illyrian – Round 2: Fight!

Previously known by the impressive monicker of Hellborn Death Engines (which sounds like a great lost 80s film), Illyrian impressively fuse such influences as classic thrash, death metal in the vein of Obituary, and a lot of 80s influences into a profoundly impressive package.

First impressions, that’s a great cover, instantly grabs the eye. Secondly, the band open with these great atmospheric John Carpenter-style keys, like the theme to some great battle opening – I like that too. Then there’s the songs, really energetic catchy tracks in the vein of Nuclear Assault, Testament and Vio-Lence. Vocally, I like the death metal touches, they really work well here. Indeed, the multiple vocalists adds a pleasing variety to the album whilst still retaining a strong identity.

Overall, Illyrian have done everything just as it should be, most impressive… and they should call album number three ‘Hellborn Death Engines’ … that’s just too good a title to (nuclear) waste!


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Steve Earles is author and co-author of numerous projects, including To End All Wars: The WWI Graphic Anthology, available summer 2014 (