Metal Church - A light in the dark 4/5

Reviewed: 6-30-06


1. A light in the dark
2. Beyond all reason
3. Mirror of lies
4. Disappear
5. The believer
6. Temple of the sea
7. Pill for the kill
8. Son of the son
9. More than your master
10. Blinded by life
11. Watch the children pray (2006)

Many, many years ago on a distant shore, the gods of wrath did gather secretly behind the hidden door. Here the gods of second chance began their merciless onslaught beyond the black; and the final word was spoken for he who sleeps with thunder. After the subtle war, the hitman, Kurdt Vanderhoof founded and fortified his Metal Church. This bulwark and battalion essentially being the dark blessing in disguise, hanging in the balance between the human factor and the weight of the world. Now, 25 aeons later, a light in the dark dispels its shadow over the western alliance, leaving them behind. Beyond all reason, the powers that be prove once again their mettle ecumenism, quelling all your sorrows. The Mirror lies; indeed, for it's a secret, know ye well that the spell won't be broken when one is blinded by life; waiting for the fake healer to remove him from harm's way, lest he falldown, for he is the psycho in mourning, who watches the children pray for a saviour under a sunless sky, in the temples of the sea.

The brave believer in Metal Church's pill for the kill won't be disappointed this time around as the band have truly created a masterpiece. This is the 2nd SPV release to feature former Rottweiller vocalist Ronny Munroe and the licensed to kill guitar malice of Jay Reynolds; who in the beginning was not widely welcomed as an adequate replacement for John Marshall. This time around, Kirk Arrington rests his unsound mind in peace as former Savatage drummer Jeff Plate pays heed the siren's call. Metal church fans are treated to 60 minutes of pure metal might in this method to madness. The title track enslaves the soul and ensnares the mind, while causing the adrenaline to pump as the next cut starts the fire burning and "Mirror of lies" hits you like a ton of bricks! The guitar work is superb. The epic cut "Temples of the sea" evokes classic Dio and Jag Panzerisms. Throughout the entire CD, the listener may detect classic Metal Church style riffing; but the melodies remain vigorous and vital. Ronny's vocals escalate with each note; never becoming too shrill. He is the perfect balance between the late reverend David Wayne and the former heretic's cradle to grave mic. howls. Mr. Howe, may have disappeared on his date with poverty feeling slightly betrayed like a little boy; but Mr. Munroe's madman's overture solidifies the sound for which Metal Church have been striving. Time will tell which Metal church line-up of death the hero's souls selects; but for now Kurdt and company's anthems to the estranged transcend the badlands, until the end of an age.

Some real stand-out tracks include "Mirror of lies", "Pill for the kill" and the 2006 version of "Watch the children pray" a ennobling tribute to David Wayne. On this slice of stealth; itself a spiritual superlative for lovers and madmen, Ronny definitely deviates from the typical Wayne whine and wheeze, operating as the trained conductor of convexity and chaos, augmenting his own kiss for the dead, leaving the listener hypnotized.




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