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Incredible debut, a timeless classic - 90%

Xeogred, February 8th, 2007

Helstar, words cannot describe how amazing this band would become with this powerful debut, and the next three albums to follow. Somehow, like others have said, they seem to get slightly overlooked and people tend to gravitate more towards Iron Maiden, Queensryche, Fates Warning, and other bands of that time. Which is a shame because Helstar could very well be beyond many of those bands in every way. Fans of more rare metal from the early 80's, such as Jag Panzer's "Ample Destruction" or Omen's "Battle Cry", take heed with Helstar and this debut "Burning Star".

One thing that sets Helstar apart from many other bands during the 80's, is that they were always more technically agressive. There's no argueing that Helstar's come up with some of the most original, and coolest riffs ever. And when you get to the complex shredding solo's, it just tears your face up. They are blazing fast, technical, aggressive, melodic, and oustanding. Along with top notch production quality for its time, there's no faults to be found here at all.

Then we have the legendary James Rivera on here, with probably some of his best singing ever. His range stretches above mountains. Usually he sticks to a more aggressive mid-range, but his wails and shrieking are like swords piercing your heart. He could probably be considered the ultimate vocalist in the realm of general Speed Metal albums like this one. His voice is beyond perfection for this kind of material.

This album has some of Helstar's greatest songs. The opening "Burning Star" along with the ever so popular "Run with the Pack" are just a few to mention. From the beginning, to the end this is a solid album. There's really no fillers to be found here. Some songs are overall better than others, but every song is unique and keeps a strong sense of Speed Metal consistency.

The single downfall with this album, is that its short. It only clocks in a little over half an hour. However I can't drag the rating down at all for this, because this seemed pretty common for a lot of bands back during these times. Then, Helstar makes up for it by putting out three more A+ albums after this one!

Overall, this is truly a legendary classic, with very few flaws. The beginning of quite easily one of the greatest Metal bands around. James Rivera will completely blow your mind on here with his paralyzing vocals, and the technical skill the band displays will surely put you in awe. This should be an essential listening for any kind of Metal fan.