Sabaton – The War To End All Wars (Album Review)

Release Date: March 05th 2022 - Nuclear Blast Records

Sabaton - The War To End All Wars

Sabaton began in 1999 in Sweden.  They have an impressive back catalog of releases, largely based on historic war events.  Listening to Sabaton is a history lesson in itself.

They have had a few lineup changes over the years, with vocalist Joakim Brodén and bass player Pär Sundström the only two original members remaining.  The current lineup includes drummer Hannes van Dahl, and guitarists Chris Rörland and Tommy Johansson.

As an avid fan of all things history-related, I find Sabaton extremely interesting and enjoy the perspective they put on the events they retell as well as their awesome music.

‘The War To End All Wars” is no exception to this.  The album starts with narration, giving you an overview of the theme of “Sarajevo”.  The song is epic, haunting, and triumphant, the narration tells the tale accompanied by a driving riff and an epic solo as well as some massive drumming from van Dahl.

Sabaton is a very tight band, their musicianship and production are top class and if you have seen their live shows, you will know that this is not just limited to their recorded work.  You can hear this in every track, the work that they put into their craft is evident.

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“Stormtroopers” is a frenzy of a song, the distinctive baritone of Brodén, with van Dahl’s energetic drumming and Sundström’s bass, drives the song while the guitars again grab your attention.  Rörland and Johansson are incredible and their solos match the atmosphere of each track impressively.

“Dreadnought” has a similar feel to “The Art of War” at the beginning, this track has top-level lyrics, Sabaton is extremely clever with the way they use lyrics in each song.  Even if you are familiar with the historical event/topic they are talking about, it is as if you are hearing an entirely new story with the words sparking imagination and taking you on a journey like you were actually there experiencing it.

“The Unkillable Soldier” is so catchy!  It has just the right tempo, it appealed to me as soon as I heard it.

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  Another jubilant track with lyrical lines such as “leading the charge’ – it’s a perfect example of fisting pumping heavy metal.  It’s going to be great with a live crowd!

I was a little confused by the beginning of “Soldier of Heaven”, the synth is a shift from Sabaton’s usual guitar-driven style, it took me by surprise.  It was unusual but is a great track with another killer solo included.  I can’t say enough about the musicianship of Sabaton, every member brings their A-game which, when it comes together, creates magic and shows why the band continues to grow in popularity and gather massive crowds wherever they play.

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“Hellfighters”, “Race to the Sea” and “Lady of the Dark” are all really good tracks and again showcase all the things which make Sabaton so good at their craft.  In particular, the lyrics in all three of these tracks are ones to focus your full attention onIt is hard to say any more about how well this album is put together.  There is not one filler track in it.

“The Valley of Death” is another great track and again the guitar solos are insane.  Just when you think you’ve heard their most mind-blowing solos, they throw something even more epic in there.

“Christmas Truce” is already familiar to me – being the first single and video released ahead of the album.  It’s a moving story, one which I had heard before but Sabaton does a wonderful job of telling this tale and capturing the almost unbelievable moment where two countries at war put down their weapons and called a ceasefire to celebrate Christmas Day.

They remind us of the humanity in each soldier.  The song is captivating, with beautiful piano, a passionate and heartfelt vocal performance by Brodén, solos that stir your soul, and a rousing chorus with sentiments of camaraderie.  This song summons a huge amount of feeling, and to top it off, there is an incredible guest vocal performance by Floor Jansen (Nightwish), who incidentally is married to Sabaton‘s drummer Hannes van Dahl.

The album ends with “Versailles” it is symphonic and bookends the album with another narration intertwined within the music, and a chanting chorus from the band singing “can a war really end all wars?”  

The album is very much what you expect from Sabaton thematically, but musically and in composition, there are new styles being explored which gave “The War To End All Wars” another level.  Absolutely fantastic album.  Standout tracks are “Christmas Truce”, “Stormtroopers” and “Dreadnought”.  Sabaton fans will be very excited about the latest offering from the band.

Sabaton: Facebook

Release Year: 2022
Category: Album
Country: Sweden

Reviewed by ForsakenMisery