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Oh, So It's "Jenghis," Not "Genghis" - 75%

OzzyApu, June 9th, 2010

Mispronunciation of names and the German accent aside, Rolf doesn’t mess around when it comes to live environments, and these are just the early days. For a third demo, it was a nice switch-up to go live, which is interesting to hear from a fan perspective so many years later. Yes, I, now nearly thirty years later as of writing this, get to year a demo of a live performance that was released seven years before I was born by a band that I love – awesome.

Anyway, these two songs have been maxed out in their development and would appear exactly the same as they would on the full-length debut. For a live environment at such an early stage, the sound is actually quite good: slightly audible bass, roaring guitars, a berserk Rolf, and clamoring drums. Huh, so it’s basically the same way the previous demos were recorded, but now translated into a live environment.

To start out with “Genghis Khan,” a song that doesn’t really stand out for me (even more so on the debut album), I notice now that it sounds a lot like Iron Maiden on their first album(which is something I’ve noted before about the debut album altogether). It doesn’t resemble any Maiden song in particular, but the formula is similar: thrilling guitar leads, flittering drum bashes, and rough singing. The bass isn’t as high as Steve Harris’ usual stuff in Iron Maiden, but that and the general tunes are the only true difference. Rolf’s style itself is unique enough, though not very compelling on the whole of heavy metal. The hoarse speaking / singing works here, though, so it’s unquestionable when it comes to them having a place.

“Soldiers Of Hell” is the same as the full-length version, although not even close in terms of epicness. The main reason is because the harmonious bridge isn’t as masterfully sleek as it is in the studio. In a live setting, it becomes a bit scratchy and less of a spectacle – I get two guys attacking me with Iron Maiden-like bliss, but on the album I get launched into the stratosphere as I go back in time. Otherwise, the song is still pretty good, with the crunchy riffs being some of my favorites from the debut. The drumming could have been a little better, as it just keeps the same tiring bashes with that mechanical sound; I might be going a bit far with this one, as it’s nitpicking to the max.

Once more, skip this solitary demo and go listen to these two songs and all the other ones you’ll be enjoying on the Heavy Metal Like A Hammerblow compilation. These demos are nice and dandy, but too short for real appreciation. With the aforementioned compilation, they are all on one boat, making for a full releases’ value of material worth all the appreciation you can give. It also makes for a good jump start to the Death Metal split and then onto the first couple of full-lengths.