Grave Digger - The last supper 3/5

Reviewed: 4-1-05


1. Passion
2. The last supper
3. Desert rose
4. Grave in the no manís land
5. Hell to pay
6. Soul savior
7. Crucified
8. Divided cross
9. The night before
10. Black widows
11. Hundred days
12. Always and eternally
13. Sleepless (bonus track)
14. Jeepers creepers (bonus track)

Grave Digger is one of the constants that metal fans can always count on. Other than a 6 year break from the late 80s to the early 90s, this band releases a quality CD almost every year and if they skip a year you can count on a release the following year. Not only are they consistent in the quantity of their recordings, but the quality is also consistently high. While many consider some of their previous works, 'Tunes of war' for example, to be their better CDs, their CDs of today remain very high quality.

The typical Grave Digger track is midtempo with much more melody in the chorus than in the verse; they are a little like Blind Guardian in this sense. There are many examples of this on 'The last supper' including tracks such as "The last supper", "Crucified", "Black widows" and "Hundred days" which are all excellent midtempo tracks with excellent choruses. There are some good uptempo tracks like the excellent "Desert rose" and a very nice ballad "Always and eternally" which ends the CD. Singer Chris Botendahl has a unique voice that needs to be heard to be believed. He has a severe roughness to his voice, in much the same way as AC/DC's Brian Johnson, but Botendahl is more of a singer than a screamer. He gives Grave Digger their unique sound and is very effective. The rest of the band is very good, led by guitarist Manni Schmidt who can play dark riffs or guitar harmonies with equal effectiveness.

'The last supper' is the latest in the long line of quality Grave Digger releases. They aren't the kind of band that will ever put out an exceptional, ultra melodic CD but they will continue to do what they do very well. 'The last supper' may not be any better than their last few CDs, but it certainly is equally as good and there is nothing wrong with that for a band that's been around, and making quality CDs, for about 20 years.




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