The video for John Mikl Thor’s The Ultimate Alliance might be the most extraordinary thing you’ll see this year.
You might want to pour yourself a stiff drink before watching this one. Thor – the bodybuilder heavy metal ‘star’ of the 1980s, known for blowing up hot water bottles on stage and making a couple of shamefully terrible horror movies, is back. And he’s brought an all-star (or, more accurately, ‘some stars and some people you’ve never heard of’ cast of guest performers with him.
Thor is probably best known to most people for the 2015 warts ‘n’ all biopic I Am Thor, which followed his journey from the dizzying heights of Rock ‘n’ Roll Nightmare to a rather reduced career reliving past glories… but he has actually been grinding out albums consistently since the late 1990s, though you probably haven’t noticed. His new album nevertheless feels like something of a comeback, as he gathers a motley collection of guest performers including Raven vocalist John Gallagher, Soilwork singer Björn Strid, Danko Jones, Anthrax’s Neil Turbin and Warrior Soul’s Dennis Post to back him up on a collection of bombastic power metal epics.
The Alliance album is preceded by the frankly astonishing single The Ultimate Alliance, which is probably best appreciated by watching the music video. Make yourself comfortable and move all nearby breakable objects, because this might cause you to convulse hysterically.
Featuring Manowar’s Ross the Boss and Chris Holmes (himself no stranger to rise and fall documentaries) on guitar, the video has the look of an early 1990s CD-ROM game – clearly no expense spared here. The 68-year-old Thor is joined on vocals by the spectacularly unnecessary pair of Nina Osegueda (from A Sound of Thunder) and… ahem… Fang VonWrathenstein of Lords Of The Trident. The resulting track is, both visually and musically, everything you could possibly hope for and more.
This might be the greatest music video since Brian May’s Resurrection. Every moment here seems spectacularly, unfathomably wrong, but the sheer audacity, pomposity and apparent lack of self-awareness throughout is oddly endearing, and the track is oddly ear-wormy – like many a ludicrous tune, it quickly lodges itself in your head.
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