Beholder - Lethal injection 3.5/5

Reviewed: 12-30-04


1. The overlook hotel
2. Mr. Grady
3. No religion
4. Blackout of mind
5. Daydream
6. Everywhere I go
7. Far away
8. Stay
9. Lay down the law
10. Lethal injection
Part one: The executioner
Part two: Crying to God

I apologize for making you look at the cover as you scrolled down to this review. If they wanted to put someone's face on the cover, they should have put the female vocalist's (Leanan Sidhe), as she is gorgeous! Although, I don't know how visibly appealing she would be if she were to pull the same face as this guy. There's the saying "don't judge a book by its cover", and when musically speaking, it would be "don't judge the sound of a band by the cover". With my experience though, about 95% of the CDs released these days have covers that do really give you an idea of what style the music is going to be in. But this CD is in the 5%, so don't pay any attention to the awful cover, and give the band a chance.

Beholder consists of 2 vocalists, an outstanding female (mentioned), and an average male. The male vocalist (Patrick Wire) isn't a high-pitched singer, nor does he have a real deep voice. He's more in the middle, and sounds fine the majority of the time, but there are occasions where his vocals are definitely below average. I'm a big fan of bands with both male and female vocals, so I'm alright with the male vocalist, as there are plenty of fantastic female vocals! Musically, Beholder is very similar to the Russian band Catharsis, and a comparison could possibly be made to Spain's Dark Moor.

Beholder's debut 'The legend begins' from a few years back is awesome! Very aggressive power metal with the typical fantasy theme, catchy songs throughout, and there's even some slower moments that are great. The way the band adds the keyboard element totally works for me, lots of creative solos at just the right time. Besides a few moments where the male vocalist is off key, the debut is flawless, and still a favorite of mine.
But their 2nd CD 'Wish for destruction' was a let down for me. The songs aren't as catchy, and the guitar work is different than on their debut. It's hard to explain in what way, maybe they're just not as much in the standard power metal style, a little diverse. Also gone are the fantasy lyrics, which are always interesting for me, as I've grown tired of the "death" theme. I'm still somewhat satisfied with 'Wish for destruction' however, as the female vocals are still excellent, and they didn't take away the great keyboard element that stands out on their debut.

With their 3rd CD 'Lethal injection' (staying with the "death" theme I guess), the band improves a bit. Not so much that it's going to match their debut, but the songwriting is back to being catchy. Track 5 "Daydream" is instantly a highlight, track 7 "Far away" features the great Roberto Tiranti of Labyrinth, and track 8 "Stay" is awesome! A very memorable song, and the female vocals are amazing on this one. We even get some nice slower moments on the final track "Lethal injection" where the male vocalist proves that he's good enough to duel with the female vocalist. The CD is full of impressive guitar and keyboard solos, and is solid all around.
So the quality of 'Lethal injection' is somewhere in between the first 2 CDs, and ends up complimenting the debut quite well. I still can't get over the cover though, it doesn't accurately show what the band is all about. Hopefully metal fans can look past the cover and recognize the talent of the band.




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