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High Speed Sonic Assault
on 10 January 2009
This is the first album release by the British Speed-Metal outfit and hints at better things to come but fails to impress in it's own right. Musical ability is staggering especially in the guitar and drumming departments but a lot of the music appears to be speed for speed's sake. Unusually for a metal band these guys actually write real choruses (as opposed to repeations of catch phrases or song titles). This is one of their most attractive features.
I've also got the "Inhuman Rampage" and "Sonic Firestorm" cds and for purposes of comparison both albums are a big improvement on this one in a number of areas - namely better balanced production (both the sound of the vocalist, and his more immediate presence are noticeably better on these later offerings) and stronger choruses.
Overall I would much prefer some variety i.e. flat-out all the time loses a lot of impact, guitar solos are so fast that they are blurred and verses are often just monotones leading up to the "Big Chorus"! The powerhouse drumming at breakneck tempos tends to drown out some of the music and vocals, and lyrics are laughable at times. "Bubble-gum Heavy Metal" keeps coming to mind but it's all good escapist fun. Not sure if it's the same category but Kamelot are infinitely more interesting than Dragonforce, and for melodic metal with dynamics Threshold are streets ahead of them also.The above mentioned "Inhuman Rampage" is the one to go for if you do want to sample rock played at the maximum speed and "Valley of the Damned" does not count as a compulsory purchase.