Release DetailsLABEL Burning Star Records
RELEASED ON 1/29/2007
Blessing In The Skies (Reissue)
posted on 7/2007 By:
If you, faithful Metal Review reader, somehow missed out on Ohio’s Axemaster and the band’s 1987 Blessing in the Skies' full-length debut, then I have a definitive answer for you as to why you can consider yourself one of the many fortunate ones. They just weren’t very good, and neither was this album. This re-issue of Blessing in the Skies is supposedly re-mastered yet is still pretty poor sounding even by 1987's standard, and the updated version contains the nine songs from the original pressing (including updated art work, liner notes, etc.), one live recording, two unreleased tracks of even worse sound quality, and a video.
Coming across like a mixture of 'C-grade' Mötley Crüe meets AC/DC meets Quiet Riot with attempts at a heavier W.A.S.P. or even Accept flavored sound, the outcome is a 12 song ride down a path littered with some of the worst riffs and vocals that the 80’s heavy rock/glam metal era had to offer. Each song runs about four to five minutes in length and relies on the same formula of basic three chord riffing, a sloppy rhythm section muddying up much of the work, and lyrics so cheesy you'll be shrieking like a hyena on peyote one moment only to find yourself cringing as if you’d been served rotten fish at the local V.F.W. the next. And the vocals, good god the vocals…the vocals sound like a sick and tortured mixture of Kevin DuBrow, Vince Neil, and Bon Scott/Brian Johnson peppered with the horrendous and horrid shrieks of Cinderella’s Tom Keifer, screaming about rocking forever and about being as heavy as molten lava. Honestly, if I could only choose one reason why the band was virtually ignored oh so long ago, it was indeed the borderline unbearable listen factor of the vocal performance. The lead guitar work had moments that did indeed start to shine only to have some black and cloudy notes destroy what little they had going for them to begin with. All in all, a band that undoubtedly tried hard but just didn't have the ability and know-how to compose songs memorable enough to get them noticed in greater number.
If there’s a possible plus side here, and I say this lightly, it’s that the band has apparently re-grouped and plans on recording some new music (and I saw no mention of the vocalist on this recording as being a part of the future plan). Let’s just hope they’ve been paying attention to what’s been going on for the last 20 years and understand that improvement upon what they once were is imperative if they are to be taken seriously by metal’s older and younger fans of today.
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