Published on April 30th, 2018 | by Justin G.
Bonfire: Temple of Lies (AFM)
I have to admit I gave up on German melodic rock institution Bonfire several albums back. Their Southern rock (by way of Germany) phase didn’t do much for me, and their musical chairs approach to singers in the last few years has been a bit too much. I’m a big fan of new vocalist Alexx Stahl’s work in Roxxcalibur and Viron though, so I gave the new Bonfire a try. It’s called Temple of Lies, and it’s the band’s 15th studio album (and their second with Stahl on vocals).
It’s still hard to hear a Bonfire album without Claus Lessmann’s signature vocals, but Stahl has a real flair for this kind of hard-hitting melodic rock. Temple of Lies is a monster album, and not just because of the vocals (which are as strong as I expected). Bonfire has rediscovered the spark that made early albums like Fireworks and Point Blank so exciting. This has way more punch than I expected, and between the guitar tone and the vocals it almost sounds like a lost Zeno album or mid-period Jaded Heart. I love the sheer energy on “Feed the Fire,” “Stand or Fall” and “Fly Away,” and even the slower “Comin’ Home” and party rocker “Love the Way You Hate Me” have their own charms.
Ziller, Stahl and company have made me a believer again. Temple of Lies is the strongest Bonfire album I’ve heard since Knock Out, and is just a fantastic melodic hard rock album from start to finish. If you haven’t checked out Bonfire in a while, this is the perfect album to rediscover them. And if you’re new to the band but enjoy bands like Fair Warning, Axxis, Jaded Heart and Pink Cream 69, you’ll want to hear Temple of Lies for sure.
Summary: Bonfire is finally back to "must hear" status