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Pure Metal Insanity! - 95%

Ripping_Corpse, December 11th, 2004

This is a very overlooked album. And I have no clue why? It takes the brilliance of Sad Wings Of Destiny and makes it more Metal. There are absolutely no filler tracks, and not a single weak song either. With the addition of Simon Philips, the songs have a harder crunch and are overall much heavier. K.K. electrifies and Glenn does more than impress. It’s a must-have for any Metalhead’s collection.

Sinner is an evil blend of insanity and fury that grabs you by the neck and doesn’t let go. It’s a wicked vice. K.K.’s whammy-bar rage is unsurpassed and tightens the death-grip. Rob sounds extremely evil, and his scream at the end is godly. Diamonds And Rust proceeds it as a solemn but heavy track. Glenn’s licks are sheer emotion. After the middle part is Earth-quaking double-bass. It’s a great song, but its true form is live (specifically, Unleashed In The East).

Starbreaker is a terrific song that has some proto-thrash riffs scattered throughout. It’s heavy and pounds your skull in. The “Starbreaker take my hand” part is exceptional, and the solo that comes after it shreds. Rob ends it with tons of wild screams.

A big change comes with Last Rose Of Summer. Although it’s pretty good, it’s misplaced. It should be on Rocka Rolla. The song isn’t Metal, and half of it is the title being repeated. By far the weakest track. It’s not bad enough to be skipped, but shouldn’t be on the album.

Side Two is miles better and doesn’t let go for a single second. The first ever Speed Metal song, Let Us Prey/Call For The Priest pulverizes you. It’s a humongous riff-o-rama that leaves you crippled. Rob really shines here and unleashes deadly screeches. Plus, the solo is mind numbing. Everyone plays to the max. After that blast of intensity is Raw Deal. It’s very aggressive and K.K. deals ferocious licks. But the main highlight here (and the whole album) is the riff four minutes into the song. Mosh Ownage at its finest. If this doesn’t twist your spine and commence you to fiercely headbang into a violent whiplash, then nothing will. That riff is one of the best Metal riffs ever. If you don’t acknowledge that, then you’re fucking brain-dead and thus listen to rap. The song ends with fury as well. This is a definite kick-ass song, especially the last two minutes.

You’re given a little breather with Here Comes The Tears. It is a somber ballad with an excellent epic touch. It’s very majestic and fits the album perfectly. The acoustic riff at around 1:10 is pure, brilliant grace. Glenn even adds piano to escalate the drama. He plays an emotional two-minute solo that nearly reaches the level of elegance as Dreamer Deceiver’s. Plus the “Here they come, here comes the tears” is really gloomy. This is a great suicidal-lyrical song. But it came out when it was cool, not like Nirvana and other queer-ass shit. It even ends with an explosion, which is the best way to end a ballad.

If you’ve survived so far, then Dissident Aggressor is going to finish you off. It’s the last song; all is calm, and then AHHHHHHH!!!!! Your head explodes and your insides burst out. The most vicious song ever, it makes Black Magic sound like Christian music. Simon is goddamn crazy on the kit, and Glenn and K.K. shoot out skull-crushing riffs. Also, the solo is unadulterated extreme aggression. The song is headbanging rapture. You’ll certainly mosh out in these three minutes of intensive, wild madness. It ends with Rob belting out wails that disintegrates your beheaded rotting corpse. Finally they learn how to end an album right.

There you have it, blood-surging Metal for all of you hungry headbangers. It’s the first album ever to feature insane drumming. Rob displays his peak performance. Although it doesn’t have as many riffs as Sad Wings Of Destiny, the quality of them are greatly improved. Plus, the Moshing lunacy is needed for everyone to experience. Get this album now, regardless if you’re a Priest fan or not. You won’t be let down.