CD Review: Manowar - The Sons of Odin (Immortal Edition)
When Manowar do things, they do them big. Their album covers are filled with big men with big muscles holding big swords. Their tunes are big anthems filled with big choruses. Even their website is bigger than big; it's available in a staggering eight languages (but you might learn to read Greek before the English site loads). Thus, it's no surprise that the "Immortal Edition" of The Sons of Odin EP packs more content than most double albums. Not only does it contain a music disc and a DVD, its liner notes also fold out into a poster. Manowar sure must be rich.
That much is evident on the music disc alone. It contains three studio tracks and two live tracks. The studio tracks are what you'd expect from Manowar – bombastic power metal with lyrics about Odin, Valhalla, and so on and so forth. Music this epic you either love or hate. The live tracks were recorded at the Earthshaker Fest 2005, where the band was accompanied by a 200-piece combined orchestra and choir. Manowar sure must be rich.
Whether or not you're into Manowar, the DVD should appeal to any metalhead. It contains a documentary on the 2005 Manowar fan convention, footage from the orchestra rehearsal for the Earthshaker Fest, a promotional trailer for that performance, and 5.1 surround mixes of the songs on the music disc accompanied by a photo slideshow. Manowar sure must be rich.
The fan convention documentary is the main reason to get the Immortal Edition. It's professionally shot and well-edited; none of this hand cam "tour hijinks" crap on most bands' DVD's. This fan convention took place in Germany last year, and it was quite a production, requiring 10 months of preparation. Judging from the documentary, the fans (who traveled from as far away as Australia and Japan) got their money's worth. Not only were there appearances by all the past band members, an arm-wrestling contest, and a Miss Manowar contest, there was also a friggin' Viking battle reenactment by a 50-member professional Viking organization. Manowar sure must be rich.
In short, this convention was one of the most metal things I've ever seen. It was heartwarming to see people from all over the world get together and have a good time, all for the love of one band. This type of friendly gathering probably wouldn't be possible with many other bands' fans. Can you imagine, say, a Pantera fan convention (shiver)? Oh wait, that's called the Dallas County Jail. At the Manowar fan convention, over 1,400 attendees drank almost 10,000 liters of beer. And you thought the kegs for your last party were expensive. Again, say it with me now – Manowar sure must be rich.