Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Christian Mistress : "To Your Death" review & "Open Road" video

The air of hip, slick and cool about that album has been replaced by more of a  Pat Bentar thing going on with the opener with traces of Judas Priest's more radio rock moments coating the edges. Singer Christine Davis does have a better knack for the placement of her melodies than many of the so called occult rock bands that cropped up in their wake. "Stronger Than Blood" is a little heavier thought invokes the days when rock and metal were not as far removed from one another as they are today, so bands like Thin Lizzy and early Iron Maiden come to mind in the guitar harmonies.

Despite the Trooper like gallop that "No Place" takes on it doesn't grab me like the first two songs do. There is a Van Halen like opening to "Walkin Around" the song goes into a more upbeat gallop than the previous songs. This album does pay more homage to classic metal than "Possession" and could be said have a retro feel. The twin guitar attack is very melodic , but also feels like it is pushed way forward in the mix like they are standing on the monitors looming over you. Though it should be heavier to due the manner the pace is picked up for some reason "Open Road" isn't heavier. It might be a feel thing. With metal you can't fake the funk, either the aggression is in you are it's not, so it could be said that they are playing metal notes , but just don't have aggression in them. To play metal and mean it there needs to be some form of darkness, that you are not just giving lip service too. I think that is why their last album was so effective is that it wasn't trying to be metal it just was what they are.

They chill out on "Ultimate Freedom" and this feel more like who they really are. When this song does build the more metal elements are the most effective they have been on this album and their drummer Rueben Storey really proves himself. "Lone Wild" takes on a doomier tone that works well to darken things up. This take on metal is much more authentic to who they are as a band. They go more into almost Motley Crue style of rock sans cowbell on "III". I like the riff , but "Too Fast For Love" was also one of my first albums. Not sure if it really holds up as an instrumental since Davis' voice is their signature, but it's worth the listen.  Overall, you can't argue with their influences and even when it seems like might not be feeling it as much their musicianship pulls them through the tough spot, they hit more than they miss and bring some impressive moment to the table along with some songs that knock it out of the park in places, so I'll give it an 8.5.

The album will be released on Relapse Records Sept 18th.

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