Jesters Moon (MIB~2002)
They didnīt throw a bunch of genres in a blender to see what would come out. They didnīt appear to be taking their cue from MTV. The guys in Jesters Moon, a band based in Portland, OR, just delivered one of the more interesting albums to cross my path in a while. They didnīt do it by reinventing anything or going where no band had ever gone before. They just utilized the simple, proven formula so many great bands have perfected: start with great songs, add some awesome guitar work and a big dose of passion and season it with your own mixture of instrumental and vocal performances and atmosphere. In this day and age, sometimes thereīs nothing more refreshing than metal done the old-fashioned way. The bandīs web site, here, declares this album to be "No nu-metal, no rap-metal, no alt-metal! Just Heavy Metal!!!" I certainly wonīt disagree. As a child of the so-called hair-band movement of the 80s, I was immediately drawn to this album. But even though I viewed it initially as Accept meets Dokken, I also hear an edge that makes it more compelling than your average melodic metal fare. At first, I was tempted to complain about the vocals being too low in the mix, but upon further listens, I love the mix and the overall sound. While the riffs and vocal melodies may draw comparison to some 80īs pop metal giants, the sobering lyrics and overall feel lend a powerful darkness and reality to this album that make it much more than a nostalgia trip. My favorite tracks include "Devils Eyes", "Whatīs My Name", "Amnesia" and "Youīre On Your Own".