Reviews August/04

Fate / A Matter of Attitude / MTM Classix 0861-105


Fate - A Matter of Attitude in a remastered version with bonus tracks featuring Per Johansson and Matthias Eklundh. The very definition of Scandic sound! Tracklisting:I won't stop; Hard as a Rock; I can't stand losing you; Point of no return; Hunter; Summerlove; Farrah; Get up and go; Limbi á go go; Do it; Hardcore Romance (bonus track); Memories of you (bonus track).

Fate originally released this their second album back in 1986, and it is absolutely one of my favorite bands - to me this band started my interest in melodic rock. I remember buying this specific album on vinyl the very day it was released, i remember seeing the band on the following tour, too.
Unfortunately this was also their last album in the #1 lineup - and the band recorded more records but changed their style a bit down the road. The last incarnation of the band recorded a demo called "Hardcore Romance" in 1992 with singer Per Johansson and guitarist Sören Hoff - two tracks from that demo is featured on this re-relese as bonus tracks. All this to be peaked by a live show for the first time in many years on the Deep Impact festival in Munich and recording a whole new album later on!
"A Matter of Attitude" was recorded with former Mercyful Fate guitarist Hank Sherman (aka Rene Krolmark) with former Maxim vocalist Jeff Lox Limbo (aka Jens Meinert), bassist/keyboardist Pete Steiner (aka Peter Steincke) and drummer Bob Lance (aka Bjarne Holm) - and i remember many lifted eye browes when Sherman announced his split with the satanic King Diamond from Mercyful Fate - to play melodic rock/pop! The album was guested by producer/guitarist Svein Dag Hauge from Norwegian Westcoast/AOR band Lava and keyboarder Kjetil Bjerkestrand - who later showed up in TNT. Shermann was alledgely not satisfied with Hauges radio friendly sound and left right after the release to join a heavier outfit called Lavina who featured vocalist Per Johansson, or Henriksen as he called himself at that time.
The album kicks off with "I won't stop" which also appeared as the first single on several radiostations - and it pretty much sums the whole album up - good melodies, wrapped in a fluffy, airy, keyboard orientated production with characteristic vocal performance and ditto guitar - and with big big beautiful back ground vocals, by Lis Damm among others. But there are several more of my youth's favorite tracks here - and i must say that i almost got tears in my eyes when i heard "Farrah", "Get up and go" and "Limbo á go go". Those tracks is the very definition of the "classic" Scandinavian melodic rock sound of the mid 80's to me. Their musical style changed a bit later - and in 1992 it was more American orientated - but much more powerful and from that period the record company has included two previously unreleased tracks - the rocky "Hardcore romance" and the beautiful mellow "Memories of You". This way MTM manages to include 75% of the line up possibilities as the back cover is with Matthias Eklundh from the time around 1990.
If your vinyl album is worn out and has lots of scrathes - like mine, this is an extraordinairy chance to get full satisfaction with this very essential and beautiful re-release. I'm looking forward to the reactions towards their come back show in Munich and their new album! BUY BUY BUY

Zillion / Zillion / FR CD 196


Zillion - a hard rock super group? Tracklisting:You and me; This Day is gone; Dirty little Secret; Never down; Kryptonite; The Smile; Wonder why; Take it away; Day or Night; The Hose; Say goodbye.

Zillion is a new comer and this is the bands debut album - but the power trio is very experienced as it is vocalist/guitarist Sandro Giampietro known from his work with Michael Kiske from Helloween in a band called Supared - besides that he has been doing workshops fro Marshall and Yamaha Music who has joined forces with bass player Jens Becker from Grave Digger, Running Wild and Kingdom Come and finally human powerhouse Mike Terrana from Artension, Axel Rudi Pell, Yngwie Malmsteen etc. - so you might say that these guys has a reputation to live up to. But do the deliver "the goods"? Yes!
I like the bands way of melting classic rock with melodic hard rock with elements of progressive metal as well as heavy metal. The album lifts off with the powerful though melodic "You and me" which has one of the most remarkable guitar solo - Giampietro really knows how to build an interesting instrumental break. But there are alot of those powerful tracks with lots of energy and artistic music abilities - but my favorite is the slow starter "Take it away" which Sandro Giampietro wrote for his daughter Julia - just listen to the first chorus, splendid! And this is followed by the mellow "ballad" "Day or Night", truly a classic in spe.
So if you like a powerful trio with the energy of a medium sized powerplant in central Europe Zillion is definitely a band to look out for.

Steel Prophet / Beware / MAS PC0426


Steel Prophet - back with new singer on a new record company! Tracklisting:Heavenly; Beware; Transfusion Vamp; Leatherette; Angels; Killing Machines; You are my Life (Gipsy Mind); Lost my Way; Political Greed (Petrol Man); Moogilauke Cascade.

Steel Prophet is one one the top league US power metal bands with eight albums recorded. The line up these days is Steve Kachinsky and Pete Skermetta both on guitars, Vince Dennis on bass, Kevin Cafferty on drums and surprise - former London/D'Priest vocalist Nadir D'Priest as their new front man!
I remember the band London as the green house for such acts like Cinderella, Mötley Crüe, WASP and Guns & Roses- and Nadir D'Priest really knows how to lift the heavy hard pounding guys in the band to a more melodic level. But still the bands attitude is very straight forward, fast power metal with a lot tempo changes and great possibillity for the head bangers to toss their hair around.
With this new album "Beware" the band not only presents a new vocalist - they have also changed record company and management. They are now hooked up with the Danish based Intromental Management and after 4 years of abscence drummer Kevin cafferty has returned. So expect them to be loud and proud on several festivals this summer!
Great cover, by the way created by Chris "Sayian" Kallias - i liked the models picturesque ...ehh - wings ;)!

© Steen Peitersen 1999-2004