Intense As Our Army Grows

A rugged step forth for this power metal band, As Our Army Grows finds United Kingdom’s Intense projecting far more confidence on this sophomore effort. Inspired by the blend of antagonistic music with an accessible vocal delivery accomplished by the likes of Iced Earth and Nevermore, Intense manage to pack a lot of rage and fury into their punch. The forceful speed and grit of the riffs herein are well organised and incredibly performed, a vast improvement over debut Second Sight. Even singer Sean Heatherington seems more comfortable in his double duty role of "the crooner” and "the bellower,” making the entirety of As Our Army Grows more believable and palatable. He knows when to let a searing falsetto go (but rein it in) and when to follow suit with the dominant, low-end riffs in order to accentuate the power, as opposed to detract from it. This creates a sense of maturity that still allows for the band’s inherent passion to shine through, a rare occurrence indeed, since most bands falter on at least one side of that double-edged sword. (Napalm)