Virgin Steele

Throne of Iron – Adventure One Review

Throne of Iron – Adventure One Review

“The inspiration for the Bloomington, Indiana based Throne of Iron came to founder Tucker Thomasson when he heard Mark Shelton, the legendary frontman of cult act Manilla Road, had passed away. The band was created as a way to pay homage to the man and his music as well as Thomasson’s love for Dungeons & Dragons. For a time Throne of Iron functioned as a one-man project, but eventually Thomasson drew supporters to the cause and the debut, Adventure One features a full time raiding party/band/nerd herd.” Chaotic-neutral.

Grand Magus – Triumph and Power Review

Grand Magus – Triumph and Power Review

“Swords gleaming in the sun, banners battered by the wind as men fight and die, a shoreline awash with red: all images vividly conjured by the punchy, but regal music on Grand Magus‘s last three albums. Though their style resists easy classification and has shifted and squirmed between the cracks of several genres over time, they’ve always been a band you could count on to release classy, high quality music.” Is this yet another stellar release by the mighty Magus or did they jump the Viking helmed shark?

Virgin Steele – The Black Light Bacchanalia Review

Virgin Steele – The Black Light Bacchanalia Review

OK, what the hell is going on here? Why are metal’s elder statesmen forgetting to include metal on their metal albums? First Halford and now this? Virgin Steele has been around since forever (1982), and singer, keyboardist, pianist, composer David DeFeis is a near legendary figure in the metal scene who happens to hail from my neck of the woods in New York. Growing up, I always considered Virgin Steele a poor man’s Manowar (and I think these guys felt the same way). Although I was never a die-hard fan, they had some good early albums and DeFeis is a talented musician and truly gifted and versatile vocalist. However, on album twelve, the pompously titled The Black Light Bacchanalia, DeFeis and company have opted to create nearly ninety minutes of what can best be described as Manowar meets chamber music meets Vegas lounge music. Conceptually, easy listening/lounge Manowar is the equal of other such self defeating ideas as room temperature fire and Shakespeare performed by mimes. Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should.