Accept - Breaker
Brain Records
Traditional Metal
10 songs (44:05)
Release year: 1981
Reviewed by Ben
Archive review

Right now, I am in the middle of a huge Accept 10k marathon boner session. Specifically, this album right here, Senor Breaker through their Metal Heart era. While Accept are seemingly known by a large amount of the metal loving populace, I daresay it, they suffer from being a "one hit wonder." Balls To The Wall and its music video hit the American metal mainstream at just the right time and they managed to catch a huge wave. Watching an interview with singer Udo from 2016, he said something like a hundred and twenty radio stations began playing Balls To The Wall in the USA over night. Also, Accept opened for Iron Maiden on their massive World Slavery Tour aka the one that sold out arenas nationwide, aka the one where Live After Death was recorded, aka the one that had a fifty foot mummified Eddie exploding out of a coffin every night. So, it's pretty safe to say that a whole shitload of metal hungry Americans were exposed briefly to Accept near the end of their first tenure. However, across the Atlantic Ocean in Europe there were many, many bands who claimed Accept as a formative influence. If I may, here be a comparison game: If Accept is primarily seen as a German Judas Priest with their mid tempo crunch filled anthems, then the album Balls To The Wall would be like a combination of Screaming For Vengeance and Defenders Of The Faith. Whereas Breaker would be much more comparable to Hell Bent For Leather with a dash of the less epic side of Stained Class. Whew.

Breaker appeals to the rough loving crowd of heavy metal. The guitar tones on here are fierce and raw as hell. There's quite a large amount of proto Power Metal going on as well. Not quite as blatantly as the double guitar harmony section in Fast As A Shark that opens the following album, but many of these even earlier PM moments do consist of guitar harmonies. Take the title track for instance. This is such a blueprint for late nineties Euro Power Metal that the Primal Fear cover version from 1999 sounds like an original song! Much like Pretty Maids and their seminal Back To Back, not every song on this record is a template for future glory. There's some very old school, AC / DC drenched bar rockers that are fun and enjoyable and are hold overs from their early days, and also a couple of shitty ballads. Looking back through the lenses of time, it's pretty amazing that Accept chose to charge forward and play new music instead of falling back on being an AC / DC clone / cover band. Sometimes, Udo can sound uncannily like Brian Johnson. I honestly think Udo decided to emphasize his maniacal troll screech as time went on to intentionally distance himself from constant AC / DC comparisons.

To be quite frank, the Power Metal moments are prevalent primarily in the first two songs, Starlight and Breaker. So, what makes these Power Metallish in the slightest? Well, for starters, that guitar tone is killer and to die for. While the riffs that are being laid down are definitely heavy, the melodicisms that pop up reek of old school Melodic Metal. The melody infused, aggressive riffing breakdown at around the two minute mark in Starlight sounds like the bridge to many as yet unwritten galloping glory anthems. Following that, there comes a guitar solo section that brings to mind Walls Of Jericho era Helloween. This won't be the last time this happens either. Let's be honest here. Breaker, the song, is pretty much the template Kai Hansen used for alot of Walls Of Jericho. Primitive and raw, this is definitely the precursor to Fast As A Shark. Those guitar licks in the outro instantly remind me of the self titled Helloween EP. Run If You Can is a nice solid steel slab of traditional metal. This one is definitely the mid tempo foot stomper. The few bar rocker songs here are actually really good, if not really different than the Accept we're used to. Burning has "live" sounds piped in, and the guitar riff is straight up fifties rock n roll through massive amounts of distortion. Down And Out sounds like a Z.Z. Top tribute song and then Midnight Highway is straight up biker rock circa 1979. Feelings, despite the horrible title, in an adequate rocker but not quite as good as Run If You Can even if it's in the same vein. Son Of A Bitch (not to be confused with Hair Of The Dog by Nazareth. You know, the "Now you're messing with a... a son of a biiiitch! Now you're messing with son of bitch!) is a rowdy, raucous, and filthy number that has Udo cussing alot. This is a rant against record companies and Udo gets to call someone a "cocksucker motherfucker." Wild stuff for 1981. Lastly, there's two ballads and all you need to know about them is that they sound exactly like the titles make them sound. Wimpy and shitty. Can't Stand The Night (not very metal for a future "Midnight Mover," get it?) and, oh God, Breaking Up Again. The latter is noteworthy for having the bassist sing. And there's the obligatory drum fill in the second chorus that makes this into a supreme power ballad shitfest.

Breaker's strengths are so great that they supersede two ballads, and a couple of out of place bar rock songs. I'm not gonna wax poetic here and pretend that this is a hidden Stained Class or Sad Wings Of Destiny, but this is for sure an album to check out for anyone interested in bands that are influential to melodic metal. Guitar riffing attack, the toanez, the grit and aggression of that trademark voice, they all came together for Accept beginning with this album.

Killing Songs :
Starlight, Breaker, Burning, Son Of A Bitch, Run If You Can
Ben quoted 90 / 100
Other albums by Accept that we have reviewed:
Accept - Too Mean to Die reviewed by Goat and quoted 75 / 100
Accept - Balls to the Wall reviewed by Goat and quoted classic
Accept - Blind Rage reviewed by Andy and quoted 84 / 100
Accept - Stalingrad reviewed by Chris and quoted 85 / 100
Accept - Blood Of The Nations reviewed by Marty and quoted 85 / 100
To see all 9 reviews click here
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