Abel & Cain - _Hands Off Cain_
by: Brian Meloon (3 out of 5)
Abel & Cain hail from Catania, Italy, and play a progressive metal style that isn't exactly unique, but isn't a direct copy of any band. In their style, I can hear traces of many different bands, such as Iron Maiden (middle-era), Leviathan, and fellow Italians Black Jester (especially in "Lights in the Dark"), as well as many others, most of whom don't come to mind off the top of my head. The fact that each of the songs on the demo are different from each other (due partly to the fact that three of the songs were written by three different band members) adds to this plethora of similarities, and makes this demo more diverse. In general, their ideas are good and their compositions are involved, yet have reasonably good song flow; but a few of the transitions sound forced, and some of the riffs are so dated that they sound out of place. In addition, the production is a little faded, which adds to the dated feel. The playing is generally good, but they aren't as tight as they could be. The guitar solos are my biggest complaint, as they aren't very interesting, and generally sound thin and cheap. My favorite parts are the clean (almost jazzy) sections, such as the one which saves "Holywar". Judging from the growth demonstrated from the earlier songs on the tape to the later ones, these guys appear to be on the right path, but just need a little time.

Contact: Abel & Cain, c/o Davide Arico

(article published 4/2/1997)

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