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Best of the Best - 99%

ozzeh, September 1st, 2010

NWOBHM has to be one of the greatest genres of heavy metal and Satan proves this with "Court in the Act". This is absolutely top-notch killer fucking metal with balls and heart.

Production-wise this album is guitar heavy and the vocals are also emphasized in the mix. The guitar tones rip you in half with the overdriven, reverb-drenched EQ mastery that is employed. The production is definitely a strong point, and for 1983, you'd be hard-pressed to find a more kick-ass 'sound' on any album then or since.

And speaking of mastery, the guitarists themselves are brilliant: employing blazing melodic leads alongside crunchy fast-paced classic metal rhythms riffs, this is guitar-tandem perfection. Featuring elements of heavy rock (in some of the tones), the guitar playing is diverse and flashy at times but it never devolves into mind-less wankery. Every note serves a purpose. Every riff progresses into the next seamlessly. The guitar playing hits you in the fucking face and leaves you seeing stars.

Brian Ross's vocals vary from an awesome mid-range to killer highs. The vocals remind me slightly of Psychotic Waltz's vocals on their progressive masterpiece "A Social Grace" except with a little more metal attitude.

The songs are all faster than mid-paced but not quite reaching thrash metal BPM territory. What makes this release an utter masterpiece is the quality of each and every single song; they're all memorable and they all demand repeated listens. This album is addictive and that's why I rate it so highly (along with the genius instrumentation).

Each musician is on top of his game and the drummer and bassist complement the guitars perfectly; you will not find filler here. No element of the music is disappointing in the least: the vocals are perfect, the guitarists are jaw-droppingly good, and the rhythmic backbone keeps things blazing along. All in all, a pretty much perfect album.

I do not believe in 100% scores but this is about as close as a metal album can get (regardless of genre).