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"Metaldrone" (NTQ Records)

Reviewed by R. Scott Bolton

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I've always thought that the term "80's metal" was unfair. It tends to indicate that the music in question is stale and tired and - although that is indeed sometimes the case - more often it is not.

Mars' "Metaldrone" is a perfect example. It's got that 80s metal sound - sort of a cross between Ratt, Starz and Twisted Sister (it should - it was originally released in 1987 on vinyl only) - but is still as fresh and as viable as anything by Pantera or any of the former-superstar grunge bands. It's not as skull-numbing, of course, but that's part of the attraction.

The CD's best tracks are the first song, "Breakin' My Heart," (no, not the Elton John/Kiki Dee pop hit); the title track, which brings to mind the heavy metal soundtrack for an as yet unmade "Mad Max" movie and "Damnation" a song that sounds like its name.

Unfortunately, there's a clunker here as well: "It's Your Life," the token ballad. The lyrics are okay but the music is slow-paced and typical.

This version of the CD also includes the bonus tracks, "Speed King," "Knifemare" (great name for a song...or a horror movie) and "Beast in the Sky." Also available is a full multi-media CD including additional video, lyrics liner notes and more.

Anyone who thinks that 80s metal (there's that term again) is dead should give "Metaldrone" a listen or two. Or more.

MARS is: Scott Davis; Jimi Jaymz, Mark Chulick, Fred Haener.

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 1999 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 02 Aug 2020 16:31:48 -0400.