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A shout is heard...Battle angels crryyyyyy! - 90%

CrystalMountain, December 19th, 2004

Everyone knows by now who is in this band, and who produced it. So I'll just go straight to the music.

Sanctuary were kind of a unique blend of traditional metal, early power metal, thrown in with some speed/thrash moments. Most songs are mid-paced, while some are fast, no ballads to be found, this album rips from beginning to end. The riffs and solos are absolutely top notch, these guys could play. The vocals are insane, incredibly high pitched but with alot of power and a very rough edge(probably most similar to Painkiller-era Halford). Not your typical light, and happy power metal vocals. The only real fault this album has, is pretty horrible production. The music is loud and fairly clear, but it just doesn't sound natural....The drums suffer especially bad.

The first song is "Battle Angels" this is the most well known song from the album. And for good reason, great riffs and melodies and some menacing and powerful vocals. A great use of falsetto in the pre-pre-chorus, "Their heathen ways have sealed their....DOOOOOOOOOOOMMMM!" awesome stuff. Great solo, just balls to the wall classic heavy metal in it's purest form.

"Termination Force" is next, kind of a weird song. Some clean guitars and weird vocals start off the song, then the guitars distort and the vocals go into a really high falsetto and the song eventually picks up into total speed metal. Really great song.

"Die For My Sins" has probably some of the best vocal work on the album. It's a semi speed metal type song, very Manowar-ish. The vocals really own this song, "Suffering no one can help you noooooowwwwww.....Betrayed by your worn and tattered voooooooooowwwwwsss!" 3 great songs in a row so far.

Then comes "Soldiers of Steel" and this is easily my favorite song on the album. A bit longer than the others, and more ambitious than the first 3. Some whispered vocals mixed with some really intense screaming give a great feel of build up. This song also has the best chorus on the album, and the best solo as well. That ending falsetto scream is just fucking insane..."Relentless screams call onto me, we are the soldiers.....of STEEEEEEEEELLLL-YEAHHHAAAHHH!!!"

"Sanctuary" is a pretty dynamic song. Changing from a Manowar style intro, to a doomy Sabbath style riff, then into a thrashy speed metal riff drives the rest of the song. The verse riff is probably the best on the album, and a solo that just ends too soon. The heaviest song on here, real head banging material.

"White Rabbit" ok now this is kinda weird. They manage to pull it off quite well, it's a Jefferson Airplane cover for those living under a rock. It's the slowest song on the album, and pretty darn creepy. It's cool when a band really puts their own style on a cover song, it fits the album suprisingly well.

"Ascension to Destiny" could have been a great song, but it's too long for it's own good. The ending is really cool though.

"The Third War" is really fast paced, but like the song before it, it kinda drags on for too long. It's a shame though, both of these songs have some really great moments.

"Veil of Disguise" closes the album off quite nicely. It starts off with some accoustic guitars and soft and soaring vocals. Then eventually picks up to a pretty fast paced rocker. Nice chorus, and some pretty varied riffing all throughout the song.

All in all this was an amazing debut album, even if the production struggles alot. But in a way, the weird production gives the album it's own style, I can't think of another album that really sounds like this one does. Very highly reccomended for anyone who loves classic metal, and early power metal, or just heavy metal in general.