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R.I.P. - Warlock 1983-1987 - 74%

Danthrax_Nasty, November 1st, 2005

This is the last true Warlock release, Triumph And Agony (1987 Vertigo VERH 50), and you can tell that things just aint up to par in alot of ways. Such a fitting title, as this album has allusions towards a triumphant, old Warlock sound, but mostly was agonizing for long time fans unable to appreciate the bands more modernized Glamed out, Poped up, main streamed sound. By the time this album was gonna be written both original guitarists Rudy Graf (last appearing on Hellbound), and Peter Szigeti (last appearing on True As Steel) had left Warlock, and I think both of their loses really show on the songs here. Oddly enough though, just goes to figure, this was the only Warlock album to make the charts (peaking at 50 in the UK, and 80 in America), and also was easily their most mainstreamed album at that. Its sorta obvious just from looking at the band photo on the inside booklet that things werent the same..., the group looked more like it was an L.A. Glam band than a German Heavy Metal act, but such was the way towards riches, and super stardom back in 1987.

Musically this is probably over produced, even for 1987, but mostly in step with its contemporaries. Also, if you dont mind some excessively cheesey parts, and a totally straight forward popular Heavy Metal sound your nearly guaranteed to like atleast some of the material on here. With said, the material is definitely a bit more generic than earlier Warlock albums, and probably more fit for an MTV time slot too, but still its some decent material that does in the very least surpass the majority of shit that was on the same level of international acclaim.

Just listen to "I Rule The Ruins", that intro riff is chrushing, and Doro's voice goes from rough, and aggressive to a soft, and mellow almost Popish sweeping dominant vocal melody in the chorus... the solo, and the break down kickass in this song also, by the way. Its just a perfect little package, highly accessible, and created by talented song writers, but its just that the need for diversity on an album like this (one geared towards a mainstreamed audience) leaves alot of the other tracks a bit less than stand out tracks, some what lusterless, and to some toss away tracks. I guess I'm trying to say some of these songs are definitely not for everybody (e.g. Make Time For Love, Fur Immer) because their obviously geared towards larger audiences. Tracks like "I Rule The Ruins", "Touch Of Evil", and "Three Minute Warning" are why I like this album so much (also, check out the awesome screams in "East Meets West").

Also, it goes with out saying all the musicians performing on here were definitely each highly skilled musicians. Doro's voice is, as always, in perfect form, and is always a highlight. The guitar work is very competant, and the songs loaded with great leads, and solos giving the songs, and chorus' an individual feel. Utilizing great melodic structures, and progressive melodies even on the worst songs these are still interesting tunes, its just some are fucking cheesey as shit, and basically Glam Rock in parts. So obviously if you cant appreciate any Cock Rock elements this isnt the best Warlock album to pick up.

I recommend this to fans of total 80's glamed out Heavy Metal, and Rock music,... other than that this is more miss than hit with most people I would assume.