OWLBEAR - Chaos To The Realm LP (Black Vinyl)
Featuring members with backgrounds from Adamantis, Klaymore, and Project: Roenwolfe among others, Owlbear’s debut album is a hearty mix of USPM and D&D. The group is rooted in the Maiden-inspired spirit of others like Ironflame and Twisted Tower Dire, prioritizing upbeat songwriting with an abundance of blazing guitars and triumphant choruses. The extra bursts of energy also reinforce a speed metal edge that pairs well with the melodic flair.
Overall, Chaos to the Realm is an excellent blast of no-nonsense heavy metal. While the group can be seen as very of its influences, the way it’s channeled has a lot of character and passion behind it. It’s a very straightforward release that puts in a slew of catchy songs and an aesthetic that doesn’t feel ironic or played out. There could certainly be more greatness on the horizon but when it’s already this tight, it’s harder to really ask for more.