Written by: Valkyrjiaa
Powerdong – Powerdong
> Power metal
> Released December 17th
Listen, power metal is my absolute jam. My forte. My mantra. My…well, you get it. And when a power metal band opens up their album with the words “the clerics had long prophesized that 2022 would become the year of the dong,” you stop asking questions and immediately buckle in for a good time.
The satirical metal fellowship who call themselves Powerdong are not only a band of feverish, cheesy power metal goodness, but one that takes the fantasy and the charcuterie to the next level. With this merry band of misfits, from key-playing bard, to guitar wizard, and whimsical composition skills from a wild necromancer, this band of misguided marauders is sure to entertain at the very least.
As I said, this band is definitely power metal gold. The album’s introductory line comes from the starter track “Prophecy of the Dong”, and out of the gates you’re ready for hilarity, yet this one comes off stronger and more terrifying that anticipated. Recounting the rise of the menace known as Panzerdong, the eerie tone, rising shrill soundscape, and vivid imagery makes it clear that you’re too late to run. You’re in it now, and you better be ready for a wild ride.
“Tolkien and the Elf” kicks off on power metal highs with speedy drums and elegant keys that really take you by surprise. You still expect some whimsical long-lore but what you get is some high level melodic mastery. BAM! The lyrics kick in, with lines like “Tonight I’ll play DnD with Tolkien himself / I will be his little elf”, and ah, there it is. It’s satirical and yet you nod to yourself like “Hey, this wouldn’t be so bad. It’s kinda badass,” and then damn does that melody ever take off. This track goes FAR beyond expectations, from blistering guitar riffs to the steadfast melody that enchants through delicate keys, I could totally listen to this track over and over, even on instrumentals alone.
Blazing in with heaviness is “Sanctuary” that brings combines truth and reality in one hell of an adventure. “Home is where my friends are online / Where my life is without a deadline / Home is where my wi-fi connects on its own / And I can game alone”: this chorus had me literally throwing my head back and laughing, saying “oh my god, I love this band.” Maybe it’s the reality of the Sunday anguish, or the truth of “Sanctuary” that home truly is that had me both crying and laughing over this one. Damn do they do an amazing job at taking simple, short verses and adding in impact. You can relate and still chuckle all while acknowledging the musical skill these guys really bust out.
Oh and the video? I had to pause and look closer a few times, which made me laugh even harder. Yes, the drummer is, in fact, slapping down dildos as drum sticks. And that one warrior? Yup, medieval dildo weapon. There you have it. Still, I KEEP replaying this song for the wicked intro, and the amazing vocals that take those simple verses and make them sound like they’re some sort of uplifting prophecy I HAVE to headbang to!
“The Friar” follows up, light in its pick ups with keyboard mastery building atmosphere before the rapid drums and intense guitars commence. “Must I be that generic guy” gave me an instant image in my mind from an old game I used to play called Talisman, and the card – The Monk. Character creation and backstory building is NO JOKE (okay, sometimes it is depending on your campaign), it’s damn hard! These guys go full tilt in creating atmosphere and intensity on some of the most hilarious and nerdy topics. It’s so easy to just get right into the melody and contemplate all of your own characters, the ones you cherished, the ones you abandoned, and the ones you sacrificed for the sheer glory, and all the struggles in creating one that’s perfect but not TOO perfect.
Still laughing and wiping a tear from my eye, I hit “Mysterious Force”. Man, is this one elusive – “Yet here I am respawning, waiting / Losing all my rating, forevermore” – this had me eye-rolling SO hard. We’ve all been there. A random bug, missed launch, glitch, lag, or the dreaded dropped connection. RUDE. It reminded me ALL too well of a popular game I once played regularly (one that shall not be named but it had a ‘2’ come out recently aaaaannnd the same thing happened). “What is this toxic place? this wasn’t always the case” is no lie. Casual gameplay becomes skill-based only. “GG EZ / You’re such a noob / LOL ur ded”. Even if you’ve been playing for ages, one small glitch is ALL it takes to ruin your reputation. Everyone has that frustration, and reflection, and WOW does this track do a solid job at pin-pointing all of those memories and making you relive them, again and again.
The final track on this hilarious EP is “Lord Procras of Tinator,” which comes in on some speedy keys, captivated by wicked chords before bursting at the seams. Even if you hate the taste of cheese, you have to admit that these guys have some delicious skill. “Why not just one more game?” quickly followed into the dreaded “in the blink of an eye, ten hours has passed me by” – and oh no, all those plans and chores for the day are STILL sitting there, waiting on YOU. If you finally figure out the play on words of this track’s title, give yourself a pat on the back and laugh, ’cause I know I did (and it was VERY obnoxious).
THE BOTTOM LINE
These guys go to the heart of power metal, rip it out, and use it as a strap on to wave around for the world to see. Caked in cheese and meaty goodness, these guys slap fantasy and nerdy on as HARD as possible leaving listeners eye-rolling, laughing, and nodding along. If you can’t relate to the lyrics of even ONE of these tracks, you’re missing out, or in? Maybe not. That is a LOT of wasted hours. Regardless, Powerdong brings the corny, cheesy, fun to new heights with this EP. Beyond the hilarious lyrics, the instrumentals on this are solid, making me cream out for an instrumental version because I could totally see myself cranking this for wall to wall inspiration, instead of just recollection. If you like power metal or TTRPGs even a teeny-tiny bit – GET ON THIS EP!