CD Reviews

Fatal Smile - '21st Century Freaks' Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     August 21, 2012    
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A band that deserves its place in the metal community.

I was surprised to find out these guys have been around for about ten years and it is only recently through that i had noticed them getting some press. When the late Ronnie James Dio claims they are the best support act he ever had you just have take notice.

First track ‘Welcome To The Freakshow’ just comes screaming and kicking out of the speakers and begging for your attention. It’s a mixture of Lordi and Marilyn Manson, all pounding drums and monster riffs that leave giant footprints on the brain. Everything you loved about Heavy Metal from the 80’s to now is nicely wrapped up in a number like ‘Raising Hell In Heaven’. Lead singer Blade has a ferocious style of singing that Vince Neil would kill for and guitarist and founder member MR.Y smashes your skull with his sonic onslaught. This is the kind of stuff that made Skid Row a household name in the metal community.

The guys never sacrifice the melody no matter what they deliver, a trait that has served Judas Priest through much of their career. ‘Judgement Day’ takes note of that and delivers a metal mass of riffs and chanting choruses. One thing is for sure these guys are going to need some serious backing vocal work to pull this off live or a truck load of backing tapes!

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If like me you’re a fan of Primal Fear then the more studied approach of ‘Broken Heart’ keeps its metal credentials despite being classed as a ballad. Listening to this CD reminded me of the glorious days of discovering US metal bands like Malice, Hellion and Armoured Saint, great songs played with conviction wrapped up in a cool as hell image. Take ‘My Private Hell’ that is both light and shade in its delivery but packs a punch like a sack full of hammers, and the chorus really hits you between the eyes. If you could imagine Sabastian Bach joining Rammstein then you get an idea of what ‘Break These Chains’ is offering on the table; yes it really is that good folks! It is easy for a band to get into a tempo rut but Fatal Smile never make this mistake and ‘Take It To The Limit’ steams along at a pace like something Kiss would have released from their Revenge period. Ronnie James Dio has the aptly titled ‘For The Last In Line’ dedicated to him and though the song may not quite the mark as the ballad you hoped for it shows the band have heart among all their chaos.

Fatal Smile is a band that deserves its place in the metal community and 21st Century Freaks is a great introduction to the band.

Ray Paul

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