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Sin Will Find You Out seems to promote itself as some sort of smutty hard rock album, at least if we're judging by the titillating cover and boring logo. But ignore these traits and explore the actual contents, and you'll encounter something you might not have been expecting: a dirty, high speed race through the thrash/power/speed terrain of the 80s that was largely male dominated. I say this, of course, because like their neighbors Meanstreak, Original Sin was supposed to be an all female East Coast riot squad that proved the fairer sex were more than capable of creating durable and unforgiving street anthems that inspire violence and passion worthy of the majority of their male counterparts. But in this case, it was actually just members of Virgin Steele with a female singer (David DeFeis' sister). These 'ladies' could play, but more importantly, WHAT they played was exciting and infectious, like a case of aural gonorrhea picked up from one too many nights of broken bottles, garbage strewn speedways and abandoned youth.
I realize that David DeFeis of Virgin Steele had some involvement here with most of the writing and performance, but I feel like Original Sin has a slightly more European speed feel to it than, say Exorcist. In particular, I think of "Fast as a Shark" on some infinite, mutating loop, or more accurately Iron Angel, what with Danielle Draconis' acidic vocal stylings and the raw, filthy speed applied to the guitar work, and that is what makes this album such a delight. The first three tracks here speed by with sheer excellence, once you climb past the hokey intro to "Conjuration of the Watcher". Excellent momentum and superb vocals are characteristics of this, "The Curse" and "To the Devil a Daughter", and there is no way any heterosexual male with taste can resist the rise of both testosterone and adrenaline inspired by these. After this, the band indulges a little with a rather uninspired guitar solo not subtly titled "A Slice of Finger". Perhaps there was something to prove here, but it would have been best left off the album entirely.
Fortunately, they return with a far superior statement in "Bitches from Hell", another volley of aggressive speed in which the vocals simply rule, the guitars fluttering all over like Accept on crack-cocaine, or Tipton/Downing suffering from an extreme case of Male PMS. "Succubus" continues the indulgent streak of "A Slice of Finger" with a 45 second drum solo that does the actual meat of the track little service, and once again, it could have been clipped to retain the quality and consistency of the music that matters. The song itself is not one of the better on the album, but it's followed by the incendiary "Pandora's Box", which blew my socks off. They get the bass solo out of the way with "Thunder War", scraping it off with some multi-tracking ambient effects, and of the three solo pieces, this is clearly the most musically engaging and interesting. "Enchantress of Death" burns forth like old school Overkill, and "Disease Bombs" shuts down the roadway with more crisp speed throttling away on the engine beneath some more eerie, resonant vocals.
If you're into Exorcist's Nightmare Theater, Iron Angel's Hellish Crossfire, or Overkill's Feel the Fire, then you absolutely must track down this album, because it's just about as good as all of them, and sexier. I would love to have had more from this band, perhaps a few more studio efforts that retained the intense pacing but delved a little deeper into the riffing foundation, since they likely would have kicked a whole parking lot of metal ass and become quite popular. But, like Meanstreak, life must have just gotten in the way, and there would be no more Original Sin. Don't be fooled by the cover art! Aside from the unnecessary instrumental solos which would have been better left for showing off in a live set, this is a pretty darn good album, and one that should thrill fans of mid-80s speed, power and thrash metal. Had 1986 not been a year that produced masterpieces like Master of Puppets and Reign in Blood (pretty much my own favorites, so it's not like I can blame them), a lot more people might have noticed this stalwart effort.
I must recognize I've always seen this album in some stores, websites, etc through many years, but never dared to listen to it, maybe because the cover never appealed to me too much, since it looks like from a Hard Rock band. However, some years ago I heard it because it came as a split CD with british Deathwish and I was gladly surprised!!
Right from the beginning I recognized that guitar sound, that production and of course these guitar solos... immediately one band came into my mind and it was the mighty Exorcist!! As the album goes through, my suspects gets more and more strong. Knowing that the songriter is David DeFeis from Virgin Steele, then everything was clear, since he also wrote the entire Exorcist album and I'd dare to say that this album by Original Sin was even played by the same musicians!! The drumming style is identical, the guitar sound, riffing and solos... this makes me think that this band was just a marketing product (since it came out from nowhere) and that the only one from the girls featured on the album credits who recorded the album, was the vocalist.
The album was released in '86, just one year after Exorcist's, although it could have been easily recorded at the same time, why not? Also released through the same label... so if you just change the vocals by Exorcist's and add these evil interludes, this could easily have been the second album by Exorcist!!
Nonetheless, the album is a really good piece of Speed/ Thrash Metal which looks like a perfect hybrid between Exorcist with the female voice of bands like Detente, Sentinel Beast, even Warlock...
Damn this is one tough album that practically came out of nowhere. Original Sin were interestingly enough, composed only of female members! And one of the better groups in that case. Virgin Steele's David DeFeis was also around giving a helping hand with the incredible production and some songwriting, which I find to be a bit ironic considering the fact that this album is arguably more fierce than what Virgin Steele were releasing back then (Noble Savage and Age Of Consent, usually both regarded as their most inconsistent albums). Though I guess it'd be more fair to point out (according to the notes here at MA) in terms of his co-writing he helped mainly with the two tracks Conjuration Of The Watcher and Succubus, easily among the best here that Virgin Steele would later cover on their compilation release The Book of Burning put out in 2002.
Sin Will Find You Out is an awesome mixed bag of pure speed metal with a handful of classic US power metal elements layering most of the tracks. By 1986 most bands were either finally going all out with the thrash movement or sticking to more obscure niche's of their own, if they were good. There's honestly not a lot of albums out there from the US that I find myself comparing this one too that often, maybe it's got some of Savage Grace's debut in it, Attacker's The Second Coming, slight touches of Liege Lord, and maybe even some Agent Steel influences but I might be stretching it a bit there. I think it'd just be safe to say Original Sin were ... well, pretty original!
Another coat to this glorious product is the production, which makes me want to look over at DeFeis again and ask "Wait, you helped with this?" as this is way heavier than Virgin Steele's stuff at the time. Who knows, maybe these chicks were really "Bitches From Hell" and wanted something that would trample down walls. The production is setup just for that, the drums are furiously heavy, guitars are razor sharp and thick, the bass sealing up the cement in the back, with the whole package giving off somewhat of a dark vibe. Everything is extremely heavy and the whole mix is crystal clear, this is something even folks whom mainly listen to modern stuff could probably get into rather easily thanks to the A+ production.
On top of this, these ladies could all single handingly slay things by themselves if they were lost on the battlefield all alone. You'll notice some of the tracks point out various solo's. A Slice Of Finger is a fairly nice guitar solo track, Thunder War being a slightly interesting bass solo, with some hellish drum soloing at the start of Succubus. They certainly aren't solo's that'll make your brain melt or anything, but at the same time it's quite a shame they didn't stick around or continue on elsewhere with other bands after this single release.
And we absolutely cannot forget about vocalist Danielle Draconis, she's one of the few female vocalists out there deserving of the title "metal vocalist". She's got a pretty vicious approach to singing, shouting a lot of clear notes into the endless sky (with that good ol' 80's echo effect which sounds perfect here) and she can certainly scream and shriek at ease, all topped off with an excellent range. Her skill is displayed flawlessly right off the bat on Conjuration Of The Watcher where she sticks to the higher notes a little more often than the other tracks. Her voice is like a chain reaction of explosive shock waves on this one, with some crazy deadly shrieks ... "Waving Flaming Swords in hand, An Ancient being from a different Vanished time, Sacred power brilliant mind" - it's parts like these that she just seems to keep going higher and higher while you thought you already knew her limit, but I have to say, if she hit any notes a little higher than these segments it'd probably slice people in half or something. It's scary. All in all, she's like the female equivalent of Glen May, John Cyriis, James Rivera, or someone along those lines, heck maybe we should just call her Ms. DeFeis?
Overall this album is downright consistent, with no sappy ballads or radio friendly gimmicks displayed anywhere. As I pointed out above the two tracks DeFeis helped out a lot with are among the best here, Conjuration Of The Watcher and Succubus. I think it's interesting to note that these tracks seem to really hint at how Virgin Steele would develop throughout the 90's, if they just flatout appeared on the Heaven & Hell releases or the two Atreus ones, they wouldn't have sounded out of place at all. It's also incredible how well Danielle Draconis' vocals go along with the songs perfectly, so I'll honestly have to say I favor these original versions even over Virgin Steele's covers which aren't bad at all. But heck, this whole album kind of has that more "majestic Virgin Steele" feel to it (their late 90's stuff). All tracks are definitely on the speedier side of things and each number differs enough to stand out on its own. Straight up speed/power with nonstop consistency, Sin Will Find You Out was crafted pretty damn well. Again, I have to say it kind of sucks they came out of nowhere, dropped this off, and would never be heard of again, but at least they graced us with a killer classic. You dig classic US speed metal and or power metal? Want to hear one of the toughest non-thrash chick bands out there from the 80's? This is it.
Heh, this is now my favourite chick band... you really can't go wrong with the songwriting of none other than David Defeis, who is just a fucking machine. Conjuration of the Watcher was originally written in '85 for this LP, before it appeared in 2001 on a Virgin Steele compilation. Then, throw in the performance aspects of four chicks that would not hesitate to punch the living fuck out of the lead singer of Lacuna Coil or any other poseur band that masquerades as "metal" nowadays and happens to have a female singer. Tristania, suck my cock, and meet a band coming square out of the Sabina Classen school of thought. Man, this is just absurdly intense.
This is pretty much straight-up US speed metal, except with some power overtones, because of course David Defeis was a devotee of Rainbow and Deep Purple and all them, but throw in a fair dose of Exciter worship, and an excellent vocalist to boot... Danielle Draconis doesn't hit too many high notes, but her voice is perfectly suited for heavy metal. Then throw in some vicious soloing, and the occasional thrash riff (more like a US power metal riff, for example the main break in the Curse), and we've got ourselves a classic of American heavy fucking metal. The occasional NWOBHM bit, for example the Electric Eye interlude moment as the main riff of Succubus (whose drum intro is EXACTLY the same as Overkill's Hammerhead, incidentally!!), to the main solo of To the Devil a Daughter, which sounds a bit like early Maiden meets Diamond Head.
The song content ranges from sorta serious (Conjuration, Succubus, etc) to silly (Pandora's Box, Bitches from Hell) - imagine Noble Savage from the chicks' perspective... add blazing speed metal riffage, intensity that never drops below "11" (well, except for two random interlude songs, but hey forget about those) and the subconscious influence of David Defeis, who is just an incredible songwriter - there's a good reason why Virgin Steele is just fucking awesome... and an excellent vocal performance, and you've got yourself a complete fucking winner, really. There's enough variety in the songs to keep it interesting for 36 or howevermany minutes, which is kinda hard to accomplish while playing mostly fast most of the time, but here's a band that pulls it off. Winnar!
Oh yeah, nice album cover too. Haha.