The hands of time...

The hands of time have brought us here, to make a change - and a change has come. Nothing on Earth stays forever, and that's how always will be, and down HammerFall's way of the Warrior, since 1997 when metal struck like thunder, many had to follow their own path and bring the Hammer down. All the past and present members of HammerFall have left something for the ages in the band during the metal age of their work with the Thunder Five, but some had to leave - because they felt fury of the wild, because they were looking for the gold at the end of the rainbow, because they felt the enemy within, simply because they felt their metal age of living in victory with HammerFall had ended - it is not upon us, but upon the Hammer of justice to judge that, and besides, some secrets better left untold. The important thing here is that no Knight of the 21st century that was ever a part of the Thunder Five had let the Hammer fall. They merely ended their part of the reign of the Hammer by bringing their Hammer down while still keeping the Templar flame burning within their hearts on fire. None of their deeds were in vain, and they are carved in stone.

But HammerFall will always prevail. Staying the mighty Thunder Five born to rule, living in victory in their land of Dreamland where, by the power of metal unchained, they bang their heads and stand united, these guys will always be blood bound regardless of all the changes - they won't back down. Battles they have won, they bled but never once they've fallen down. The fire burns forever, and therefore, by following the signs of the Crimson Thunder, the Thunder Five are riding once again, this time without Anders Johansson.

Anders joined HammerFall back in 1999 when the call to arms came - he played with the Thunder Five as the session drummer on the Legacy of Kings crusade, only to become the full member in no time. His great skills as a drummer, and his fun and active spirit brought the band something for the ages that will never be forgotten. Being born in 1962, Anders was the oldest member of the band, which made him stronger than all, and truly a Champion of the Thunder Five throughout these wonderful fifteen years. Being a drummer is a difficult task, but being an awesome drummer that Anders is, while almost not noticing how the time passes and how things change, is truly something to respect and admire. Regardless of age, he could, no doubt, be called the most restless soul in the band, always pulling pranks, having fun (with things that aren't meant for having fun, mostly), living life loud, becuase he knows life is now! Some of the clips that can be found on HammerFall Youtube channel and on some DVDs prove that. But what made him stronger than all was the music he helped make for seven of the band's symphonies of steel (studio albums). The power of metal was fully unchained when he played, and part of it all can be heard and seen here, on the DVD Gates of Dalhalla, one of the last things (except the studio album (r)Evolution) that Anders did with Thunder Five.
Alas, 15 years is no little time. And even though life is now, some things can't stay forever. The hands of time have done their job - Anders' way of the warrior with Thunder Five is over. Even though everyone that was ever a part of HammerFall is blood bound by the Crimson Thunder running through their veins (a bond that will last forever), distance and difference between the band members' musical tastes, individual careers, and plans for the future, was increasing. Now it has come to its highest point, and Anders Johansson brought the Hammer down to further pursue the gold at the end of the rainbow on his own.

Thank you, Anders, for these wonderful 15 years and everything you brought to the band (which is a lot)! And we all, Templars of Steel, wish you all the luck you can get in the future. Keep the flame burning!

But hold on! As said before, Thunder Five will never back down! Therefore, welcome the drummer that will join the band on the upcoming tour - DAVID WALLIN! Welcome, friend! Templars of Steel from this HammerFall fan club wish you all the best in the future! Although we still haven't heard you play anything with HammerFall and haven't proven that you are the worthy replacement, we know that no Knight of the 21st century could walk the Way of the Warrior and become a part of the Thunder Five (whether only temporarily, or eventually for many years to come) if he didn't have the power to raise the Hammer and bring the glory to the brave, so let's get it on! You followed the signs of the Crimson Thunder and ended up here - and you will be one of a kind, since you come with a change after 15 years. We hold our metal banners up with pride and are looking forward to fighting with your brothers in arms when forces of steel meet again on the upcoming (r)Evolution crusade!
As for the Templars of Steel that wish some info about David: his work by far was most notably that in the Swedish musical project PAIN, formed in 1996, labeled as industrial metal, or, more precisely, a mix of heavy metal and techno/electronic music. You can check them out here. More info about the new drummer will hopefully follow in the days to come.

Finally, there are some other news as well. That Rebel Inside, Fredrik Larsson, the band's great bass player, who played with the Thunder Five on their first release, then left to return after ten years, is now leaving again, but only temporarily. Fredrik is expecting his second child in winter that is coming, and won't be performing with the band on the upcoming crusade. Nevertheless, for a Hero's return our hearts still yearn, and a hero is indeed returning to replace Fredrik during that time. That Hero is the Knight of the 21st century who had left the band 6 years ago so that he could be flying on wings of steel! And now he's flying on wings of steel again, fighting for the oath he's sworn - to spread the word of a legend reborn! This legend will now appear as a part of the Thunder Five again, and as a bass player. Welcome back, STEFAN ELMGREN! Hammer high to the sky, Templars of Steel are delighted to see you here again!


Chart entries

Highest entries in the history of HammerFall on German, Czech, Swiss, Finnish and Austrian charts; top of the Swedish charts again; hitting the UK charts for the first time; reached top ten in 5 countries!

Sisters and brothers in metal, unite - one flag, one world united! Templars fight or fall, raise your fists, heed the call! Because in our hands we hold the future, carry on - in our hearts, eternally, we Keep the Flame Burning!

Hammer high, and all hail HammerFall!

# 1 Sweden
# 4 Germany
# 4 Czech Rep.
# 5 Switzerland
# 10 Finland
# 13 Austria
# 67 France
# 84 Belgium
# 105 Netherlands
# 110 UK
USA: #1 Heatseekers & #32 Hard Charts

(r)Evolution - overview

Back in 2011 when the call to arms came, Infected came out as the fourth HammerFall album in a row without a break (ever since the one between Crimson Thunder and Chapter V), and undoubtedly brought something slightly different to HammerFall's music and general style. The reactions to it all varied, but, as any other HammerFall album, the release was followed by a great tour full of shows with a lot of energy that both promoted the new album and reminded everyone of the already known powerful old songs. That chapter was closed with a great show in Dalarna, which was recorded on DVD, "Gates of Dalhalla", and that celebrated 15 years since the release of HammerFall's debut album. And then, everything went silent for 2 years. Some wondered if the next album was going to stray from the old HammerFall path and bring some big changes. Others wondered if they will return with a classic that resembles old stuff so much that it could be entitled "Glory to the Brave II". Some were unsure if HammerFall will return at all.

In 2014 the metal struck like thunder! HammerFall was indeed back, and with a vengeance. They came back bringing (r)Evolution to their music and all fans' expectations. Title of the album, although inspired by the Swedish translation of the Planet of the Apes movie title, depicts the way HammerFall "returned to business" just perfectly. The album is definitely a masterpiece in all its glory. The "evolution" part represents the fact that the break really refreshed the guys and their sound. With a brand new energy, this album brings a lot of power in every aspect - it is especially noticeable in the vocals, where Joacim's voice shows great strength and condition which probably cannot be compared to vocals on any of the previous releases. Remarkably, this man's energy and ability to nail very high notes while not reducing them in power somehow increases with age. The entire album shows progress and definitely a change in HammerFall's music - a change for the better, if that is even possible.
The (r), or the "revolution" part, is that "vengeance" part, where HammerFall returns and strikes those who were sceptical about the next album by adding the best parts of their past to this new progress and energy. They definitely didn't bring "Glory to the Brave II", but something that reminds us of their whole path since the founding of the band all until today. Unlike "Infected", that just brought the change, "(r)Evolution" brings the refined, elevated and strengthened traditional HammerFall sound, even with open references to their previous releases in lyrics.
Another proof that the two year break had a great impact on HammerFall was the fact that the album turned out the way it did mainly thanks to the fact that Oscar sat down and did an extensive and hard work by writing a book, "Legenden om HammerFall", which goes back to the origins of the band and beyond. Indeed, recalling all those things resulted in bringing us this masterpiece of the album that glorifies and unites all of the old ones. In the end, all of the guys recharged their batteries and came back hungry for more songwriting, recording, and, indeed, playing and getting excited crowds on their feet!

The album was partially produced by Fredrik Nordström, who worked with HammerFall on their first two albums, and partially by the guys themselves. Only the vocals were done in the USA with James Michael, who was their producer for the Infected album, and that seems to have been a great decision, because the vocals are stronger than ever! And the cover artwork had been done by Andreas Marschall, who painted the cover artworks for Glory to the Brave, Legacy of Kings and Renegade. All of these circumstances made this album as glorious as it is.

If you still haven't bought it and checked it out, it's high time!

To see the review of the album track by track, check this extended (r)Evolution review.

(r)Evolution - extended review

The opening track for the album is probably its most glorious one, that could, perhaps, even turn into a "Hearts on Fire II" one day. It is probably the most "HammerFall-ish" song ever written, since it is dedicated to Hector, the band's mascot and knight that stood behind on the previous album, but now returned standing in front of the entire band with his own hymn - "Hector's Hymn". The powerful song with music that brings scenes from the old music videos and album covers is full of references to the old HammerFall songs in the lyrics - templars of steel, the dragon that lied bleeding, secrets of steel, a legend unbent, unbowed, unbroken, hero that was said to return, and a heart on fire... and many others. The song in general is worth carrying the title it has, and does reassure any sceptical person that listens to the album in the very beginning.

The second, title track, "(r)Evolution", that speaks of fighting for what you want and believe in and against oppression, is another masterpiece.

But the next track, "Bushido", which was the first single, really looks back to HammerFall's most representative pieces of the past. The title "Bushido" was used only now, although it has been present for years - the meaning of it is, in Japanese, "The Way of the Warrior". The song tells of a Samurai warrior, represented by Hector on the single cover, and it ends with the riff from one of the greatest HammerFall songs, The Way of the Warrior, itself, and the words THIS IS THE WAY. Which would, come to think of it, be a great thing to play live - finish Bushido and just continue with The Way of the Warrior.

"Live Life Loud" is another typical HammerFall song that is a new material that brings memories of the best old moments to mind. Lyrics remind of those of Life Is Now, Let's Get It On, maybe Templars of Steel in some way - just pure power that gets you on your feet.

"Ex Inferis" is one out of two "darker" songs on the album. It has some deep and dark energy that makes it epic and one of the best songs on (r)Evolution. The perfectly paced melody that doesn't rush the song at any point, carries some sort of heavy strength, and lyrics only emphasize the entire feeling, by picturing visions of hell itself that begin with the talk about a script hidden from those not supposed to ever find it. A great piece that stands out on the album along with Hector's Hymn and Origins, but in a very different light from the other two.

The first song written for the album, "We Won't Back Down", comes next and brings contrast when compared to the previous one. It is faster and brighter, the song is catchy and melody once again "awakens". The lyrics fit in perfectly, strong and positive, powerful and typical for HammerFall. They also fit into the album title and the way it came after 2 years of break: "Battles we have won, we bled, but never once we’ve fallen down! Form dusk ’till dawn standing with our mighty swords drawn!" The song also features James Michael along with Joacim on vocals, and it all sounds very good.

Next comes the ballad, "Winter Is Coming". It is kind of a tradition, that every album gets a ballad, and a song written only by Oscar. On this album, it is Winter Is Coming. It is a typical HammerFall power ballad with lyrics that obviously (but not directly) refer to certain things from A Song of Ice and Fire - which makes it kind of obvious that it was written by Oscar. Some earlier HammerFall songs also indirectly referred to the series.

"Origins" is another pure, entirely HammerFall-ish masterpiece, both musically and lyrically. A very catchy and fast song, fitting into the album perfectly and bringing even more positive energy. After Hector's Hymn, Origins also refers to some older HammerFall songs in lyrics (brothers in arms searching for gold and glory, heeding the call, searching for the rainbow's end, templars, legacy, even always will be, and more), and celebrates the best of HammerFall from the previous years. Its title is truly deserved, and this song is probably bound to become a HammerFall classic in the years to come.

Then comes the song "Tainted Metal", that reminds of some classics in metal music in general - especially with the chorus: "Oh it's tainted metal!" As Joacim said in an interview, it's one of the most "metallish" songs on the album. Still, it keeps HammerFall's unique spirit and is very well done, just like any other song on the album.

The second dark track on the album is "Evil Incarnate". It is the last song written for the album, and was at first planned to be the bonus track. The melody of the verses is not as dark as the one on Ex Inferis, but by the time prechorus and chorus come to pass, the song does get heavier and darker, which gives it great balance and "shadowy", "insecure" feeling - which is great, since the lyrics are about a man playing cards against the devil. Those changes between brighter and darker parts of the song could be seen as the "twists of fate" in the game itself, or the turns of luck which, in the end, fails the man, and the devil wins over the entire human race: "Satan slips another ace, a thousand souls will fall from grace..."

The last song on the album is "Wildfire". It stands out from the rest of (r)Evolution with many things. First of all, it was planned to be an instrumental song, but then, Pontus noticed that it would be really cool if it was "strengthened" by the vocals. It is very fast, and the chorus was sung by a female choir, which gives it unique sound.

All in all, the album (r)Evolution is worthy of its title and will definitely stand by other HammerFall's great works, such as Crimson Thunder or Renegade, in future.



On their Way of the Warrior, the thunder five were always led by the signs of Crimson Thunder and... they followed the warrior and their king, Hector. From the very beginning, he was proudly standing above them, keeping them with his hammer high. As he gathered his armies along with them, his Templars of Steel, they made the enemy bleed and kneel. He appeared in all battles and quests, on covers, on stage, in videos, and in the entire spirit of HammerFall.

And it may have seemed, three years ago, as if Hector's power was diminishing, his hand holding the hammer was becoming weary, and eventually he left... But many who thought that the warrior, once arisen from the ashes, who came with glory, saw and conquered, had returned into these ashes again - have forgotten that, still guarded by templars, all the secrets of steel will remain! 'Cause we (both the band and the fans) are the keepers, and for us, this is real, not a game! Hector had left, only to return with his own hymn, which is honoring that entire Way of the Warrior along its powerful verses. Along came the thunder, and the hero indeed returned! The fire and the flame will burn forever. On, and on, and on, together we fight, together we will fall! Because the legend of Hector never ended - a legend unbent, unbowed, unbroken - a story is born, a legacy reborn!

Hail to the warrior! And check out this new video and the song, the hymn, that announces the return of the thunder five (in only a week from today) in such a glorious light, reminding of the times that have passed, and promising the equally, or even more, glorious future:


As the end of the summer approaches, so does the new album, (r)Evolution. This, of course, brings some news and some fresh air to the events concerning HammerFall. There are some of the most important news and links:

Check it out via Google, iTunes, Amazon or Spotify


Nuclear Blast
Google Play

Part I
Part II
Part III
Part IV

Check it out here!

World Wide (r)Evolution is starting! With Serious Black as the opening act, and Orden Ogan as special guest, it all begins. Check out the tour dates here!