From the metallic opening salvo of the title track of “Objection Overruled”, the decision to reunite with original singer Udo Dirkschneider in 1993 was a good one. Gone was the unnaturally slick and pop-influenced sound of previous record “Eat the Heat” with Oklahoman singer David Reece, back was the hard-edged rock sound that made them icons. Anthemic nuggets of rock in the vein of Judas Priest bring us the highlights, without doubt the best being the sneering ‘I Don’t Wanna Be Like You’, turning the clock back to their signature song ‘Balls to the Wall’. ‘This One’s For You’ is also vintage Accept, coming at you in a flurry of metallic fury and punctuated by a short, sharp and growled chorus, the song also illustrating how good the rhythm section are, all working at breakneck speed with Wolf Hoffman‘s guitar wailing like no one’s business.
The problem with returning back to your classic sound is that you tread a fine line between tradition and pastiche. Accept are on the right side of this line largely, with the frenetic attitude of ‘Sick, Dirty and Mean’ proving this point perfectly. Unfortunately there are exceptions to this, the worst culprit being the formulaic and clichedly titled ‘Slaves to Metal’. This fine line is also crossed in the uninspired ‘Protectors of Terror’, a brooding and ominous aura matching its anti-religion sentiment and frequent biblical quotations. Like religion itself, it is best left ignored.
Udo‘s voice is as mean and snarling as ever and not one at ease on softer ballads; case in point being the nicely forgotten ‘Amamos La Vida’. More fun but equally as throwaway is ‘Donation’, a KISS-sounding ditty that is not about charity:
“There she was, there she was, praying for a little donation. On her knees, there she was…”… yada yada, you get the dirty picture.
This reunion yielded three albums, with this one being the pick of the bunch. This album’s sound is much more punchier and has their vintage hard rock bite; much welcomed after the saccharine pop leanings of ‘Eat the Heat’. All this before disintegrating again in 1997, a mere four years after reuniting.