Demoniac - _Stormblade_
(Evil Omen Records, 1997)
by: Drew Snow (
When looking back at Demoniac's previous album, _Prepare for War_, you get an image of the trend at the time, namely corpsepaint, "evil" song titles and music, etc. Fast forward to 1997, and again Demoniac have hopped on the latest trend, retro-80s metal, of course. Decked out in bandannas and sunglasses, Demoniac inform us that "Real Metallers have tattoos and drink lots of piss! And get laid everyday!!" In that case, I've got some catching up to do on all three fronts. Demoniac have a strong sense of respect, however, as they pay dues to "some fuckwit" who took the photos, and the "long- haired idiot" that did backing vocals. But put aside the shameless bandwagoning for a second, and just listen to the album, and what you have is an amazingly strong second effort full of Iron Maiden-esque riffs and solos, lyrics that are just plain stupid, and some songs that, if I can just quote the liner notes here, "headbang harder than anybody." With both a sound and a production reminiscent of decades past, Demoniac pound out nine songs of somewhat thrashy 80s metal with a clear and present 90s black metal influence, which is mostly heard in the raspy vocals. Sometimes the vocals go into "tough guy" clean mode but, thankfully, that is pretty rare. What's not rare, however, is the abundance of killer riffs which are a clear indicator that the band has been listening to _Number of the Beast_ a bit much of late. These riffs, coupled with the huge amount of guitar solo cheese and fills are what -really- make this album. If you're not a fan of flashy solos, then stay away, stay far away. If you're into that kind of thing, coupled with some totally crushing riffs and unabashed 80s feel, then this album is sure to satisfy.
(article published 12/8/1997)
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