Find us on Facebook!

To keep updated like our page at:

Or on Twitter:

Or E-mail us at:

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Reviews: Deep Purple, Malefice, Sacred Mother Tongue

Deep Purple: Now What?! (earMusic)

Deep Purple two words that are forever engrained in the minds of rock and metal fans, much like their peers Sabbath and Zeppelin they are band that will always be held in high regard. Deep Purple have weathered their fair share of changes both stylistically and in their line up and are still releasing albums. This is their 19th album and their first since 2005's Rapture Of The Deep much has changed since then the biggest being the loss of founder member organist Jon Lord who died while the album was being made, his replacement; veteran Don Airey, does his best Lord impression throughout providing some Hammond riffs and solos as heavy as any guitar and are especially prevalent on opener A Simple Song which explodes into a massive middle after a subdued intro and also manages the organs and indeed orchestrations are at their peak on the doomy Weirdistan. The orchestral theme continues on Out Of Hand which sounds an awful lot like Perfect Strangers stylistically, albeit with better production (something which can be attributed to Bob Ezrin), Out Of Hand is also Steve Morse's first introduction pulling out a killer guitar solo. Deep Purple are at a point in their career where they can mix things up a bit (and have never been afraid to) so when tracks like the funk filled Body Line (shades of the Mark VI line up) and the lounge jazz of Blood From A Stone. The band also stretch out their musical muscles on the proggy Uncommon Man which is based on the Fanfare For The Common Man and as such means the song sounds like ELP (who famously covered the original). As with all Purple records the performances are brilliant with THAT rhythm section of Ian Paice and Roger Glover dictating the pace, the aforementioned leads of Morse's guitar and Airey's keys and the still excellent but less ear shattering vocals of Ian Gillan all showing that they are still very much part of why Purple are still making records. Despite this Now What?! still has some weak points; first single Hell To Pay sounds like a Purple pastiche, Apr├Ęs Vous which is just the band in cruise control and the pseudo horror of Vincent Price is just hilarious (which might be the idea). Despite this these tracks are still stronger than a lot of current bands ideas. Still when a band have been going since 1968 and have released some of the most influential albums in rock history then it will always be hard to rediscover that magic. On Now What?! Purple aren't threatening to top In Rock, Machine Head or Stormbringer but that was never the intention. What they have done is added another good album to their collection and shown that even after all these years they are still relevant and are still capable of producing some quality music. 7/10

Malefice: Five (Transcend Music)

Reading modern metallers Malefice are back and once again they are bringing their distinctly heavy brand of British metal to the masses. Five is a 7 track EP designed as a stop gap to tide fans over until the next full length (and give them some new stuff to play in the live arena). Things kick off with the thrash arpeggio riffage of V which is bolstered by some electronic backing and some heavy as hell breakdowns. The Great Deceiver shows the more melodic side of the band which shows off Dale Butler's excellent vocals and has a massive gang vocal chorus. Malefice sound enthused on this EP but there is something more they also sound like they are finally able to grab the brass ring, the guitars are tight peeling off razor sharp riffage, the drums pummel and the bass rumbles your bones, all of which shows that Malefice have honed their skills over long touring cycles to become an excellent band and this EP is a testament to that. With this new maturity the band can afford to open up their sound a bit by bringing in a djent style palm muted riff on Never Say Die and on Wasted they have aimed at arenas with its massive chorus hook add to this the piano based instrumental of Time and altogether you can see that Malefice have become a real jewel in the British metal crown and if this EP is anything to go by their fourth full length may be their masterpiece. 8/10

Sacred Mother Tongue: Out Of The Darkness (Transcend Music)

Northampton natives Sacred Mother Tongue return after a long gap with their second album. A few of the tracks were already featured on their EP A Light Shines released earlier in the year so I'm not going to focus so much on these songs (http://musipediaofmetal.blogspot.co.uk/2012/10/reviews-kiss-sacred-mother-tongue.html) Instead I'm going to focus on the rest of the album and for the most part it's riff heavy modern metal with some fantastic melodic solos and vocals. Ah yes the vocals gone are the screams from the debut and in their place frontman Darrin South gives his best clean vocal performance not that this is a bad thing as he truly has an excellent voice however many may lament the loss of the screams. These people can rest assured however that the band have lost none of their aggression, the drums of Lee Newell kick like a mule on tracks like the opener Demons and Just A Ride he is aided in his rhythm method by bassist Josh Gurner who provides the heavy bottom end in tracks like A Bird In Hand. The shit kicking rhythm section is the perfect foil for guitarist Andy James who can pull out muscular riffs from nowhere and then wows with his tight concise but extremely proficient and technical soloing that never strays into fret wankery. Evidence of this can be seen on the thrashy A Light Will Shine, the Maiden-like Believe and on the melodic opening to Bleeding Out (before all hell breaks loose). SMT have managed to create an album that merges metallic ferocity with some huge hard rock hooks (mainly from South’s vocals) and they seem to be in a transition period much like Trivium were a few years ago (a band they share a lot of similarities with) much like the Floridians emerged as world beaters so too will SMT if they keep this up. 7/10

No comments:

Post a Comment