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When heavy metal fell from the sky... - 90%

maverickvkz, July 22nd, 2008

Once upon a time there was a talented band from Mexico, named RED and was led by guitarist Raul Greñas, who defined his music simply as rock. They embarked in an adventurous journey to the U.K., seeking for the sweet and honeyed success that many representative bands as Iron Maiden, Def Leppard, Grim Reaper, Diamond Head, and Saxon, among others, were getting in the peak of the well-known “New wave of British heavy metal”. However, RED failed to achieve something positive; especially because of the huge racism that over flooded the land. This is why the band returned to Mexico partially disappointed, but also with innovative ideas. Surrounded by the atmosphere of a country that needed new flesh, new music, and new talent, the name RED was changed to Luzbel, which founded the first sounds of heavy metal, and sowed its seeds everywhere, ultimately becoming one of the pioneers of the genre in this side of the continent.

After picking up Arturo Huizar, a professional singer and songwriter, Luzbel officially started their controversial career in 1985, with a thunderous and legendary EP named “Metal caido del cielo”, which sent sparks throughout Latin America thanks to its elaborated sound and later became a cult material for all the metal heads, because it was, indeed an album that changed the way music was being made until that year. Luzbel was the main influence of many other Mexican acts as Aspid, Ramses, and Transmetal, among others, and became one of the pillars of a genre that has never been treated the way it deserves. Luzbel’s first stage of life, (Which lasted for over ten years), had the characteristic of making each album sound extremely different from the previous one, but always kept a solid continuation line. For every new material, instead of ripping themselves off, or becoming repetitive, they explored many music genres, and developed releases that will never get old.

The EP “Metal caido del cielo” is made of four heavy and killer tracks, very influenced by the music and sounds that the band discovered in Europe, where every song owns a different tint and personality, and they make your mind travel through different roads of hatred, personal thoughts, sadness, occult and lust. Four battle hymns for any metal freak, but which also created a chain reaction of reject and riots by shallow-minded detractors of the band in Mexican society. Since this is an EP, and it obviously has a reduced number of tracks, I will review each one of them independently and with some detail.

El angel de la lujuria (The angel of lust) is a magnificent song, carefully crafted to become the equivalent of Rata Blanca’s “La Leyenda del hada y el mago”, Angeles del Infierno’s “Maldito sea tu nombre”, or Avalanch’s “Torquemada”, so, as you can see this is Luzbel’s official anthem, which features double bass drumming with striking guitar breaks, and clean, sharp vocals of a young Arturo Huizar, who was blessed with this gift, which he exposes to its maximum splendour. The song begins with a few creepy sounds, and a dark vibe, followed by some mumbling about an angel that fell from the sky, and then, a long shriek by Huizar explodes amazingly. The rest of the song goes by a series of groovy guitar distortions, decent bass shredding, and powerful uproars generated by the drums, which teaches everybody about the true sound of 80’s heavy metal. Shocking and surrealistic lyrics flow with no ambitions, and show how creative Huizar is in the song writing field.

“El loco” (The crazy), is the next song, and it is slower, rougher and more realistic than the first one, since it speaks about the life of a man who has lost his marbles and even asks God to end with his life. It features the best and more complex guitar solos from the EP, and Huizar’s falsettos continue bewitching your senses.

If you want to relax and enjoy of something funny and catchy, “Esta noche es nuestra” (This night is ours), is appropriate to do so. Nice and sexy track dedicated to any female with whom you’re about to get laid. It’s neither technical, nor poetic at all. It’s just a cheap rock ‘n’ roll sing-along semi-ballad which strangely includes several keyboard cameos, which can turn to be a little annoying at first, but you quickly get used to them.

“La gran ciudad” (The big city), is the last song of the album, and it features a very obscure ambient. Slow as any power ballad, this one is sad and depressing. There are choruses that join Huizar in some sections of the song, which provide a veil of despair and the singer seems to be actually crying. I wouldn’t have ended the EP with something as tragic as this, but that’s just my humble opinion. As an additional note, this is the only song from this material which wasn't written by Arturo Huizar.

Four tracks… Four totally different lyrical themes… Seventeen minutes that will open your mind and will let you learn about one of the most talented bands that Latin America has given to the world, and I totally recommend it. “Metal caido del cielo” is a short, yet brilliant creation, which shows the ambitions of a group of young performers who initiated an ambitious crusade that has spanned for more than 25 years.