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"Cycles of Endurance" (Demo)

Reviewed by Jason Savage

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Blind Rage is one of those few bands that blew me away with the first track and kept my head banging until the CD ended. The ending seemed to come too quickly and I found myself spinning the disc again.

Formed in the wintry bowels of Chicago in 1996, they melted snow in the Midwest until 1998. Being too hot for the cold Midwestern brethren, they packed up and headed for the warmer desert sands of Arizona. This crucial move enabled them to open for national acts on the left coast such as fellow  Arizonians Flotsam & Jetsam and Sacred Reich, as well as a host of others including Lizzy Borden, Zakk Wylde's Black Label Society, Crowbar, 60 Watt Shaman and My Dying Bride, to name a few.

The first track, entitled "Keep Out," kicked this excellent CD into high gear with its Dave-Mustaine-meets-Blackie-Lawless vocal stylings, accented by some Cradle of Filth death metal screams. Sound intriguing? It is ... I can understand the words, but yet we have this whole death metal vibe going on in the background.

"Black Eye" hits me in the face as vocalist Tom Collins changes his direction again. Embracing classic gravel and glass lodged in your throat screams, this song tears down the walls with fast drumming and blistering chords.

"Disturbed" is another stand out track showing off Tom's ability to change his vocal barrage. This song also makes good use of guitars blending progressive solos and crunching thrash riffs. Thick doomy basslines litter the soundscape creating the sort of ambience I haven't heard since the 80's. 

Blind Rage has found a way to combine 80's thrash with snippets of prog and death metal whilst embracing what today's scene has to offer via samples and technology ala "nu-metal." Overall, this CD completely kicked my ass like no other has done in quite awhile. Blind Rage is definitely a heavyweight contender worthy of a title fight. 

On a side note: I went to and discovered to my horror that Blind Rage has  broken up! What a loss to the metal community!  RIP guys ... If anyone sees them out in the desert, be sure to tell them they will be missed!

Blind Rage: Tom Collins - Vocals; Stephen Handley - percussion; Blaze Keene - guitars, vocals; Brian Condiff - guitars, vocals.

Rating Guide:

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) A classic. This record will kick your ass.

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes)retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) So-so. You've heard better.

retinysaw.gif (295 bytes) Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

restinks.jpg (954 bytes) Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2001 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 25 Mar 2018 16:17:35 -0500.