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Hell Destroyer
November 2007
Released: 2007, Destroy All Records Entertainment
Rating: 4.0/5
Reviewer: EvilG

Cage’s latest output is every bit as strong as its glorious predecessor, DARKER THAN BLACK (2003). It’s unfortunate that there was a four-year gap between albums. After all, Cage is not a household name and that long of a break can do no good.

If you didn’t know already, HELL DESTROYER is a concept album so the long-ass 20-song list isn’t all songs. A handful of them are short dialog pieces between songs. I have to say the storyline is not clearly laid out. For my first several spins I just listened to the awesomeness of the music and ignored the fact that there was an underlying story. My advice is for you to do the same. However, I decided to read through the booklet and I became almost blind while doing so. The booklet LOOKS very cool with the great artwork throughout, but it’s at the expense of the display of the lyrics. The line breaks are messed up and interspersed with solo credits plus the font size is retardedly small. The story is supposed to be their interpretation of the book of revelations. Since I am not Christian, I’ve never read it in its entirety, and in reading Cage’s weird futuristic twist on it, I am wondering if this is some bizarre attempt at Xtian Metal? I doubt it, but at this point in my life a full near 80min album of material all about the devil, the Antichrist, Hell destroyers and Christ hammers becomes quite dull and even juvenile. So bottom line, ignore the lyrics, and focus on the music.

If you’ve heard Cage before, musically you know what to expect. If not, then a quick comparison would be a mix of PAINKILLER Priest and Primal Fear….so basically, melodic, often speedy, and always aggressive heavy metal. The album’s highlights include “Hell Destroyer”, the opening song, which starts with Sean Peck doing some Halford, styled screams. I love his screaming but it’s when Sean sings in mid and deeper tones that the true power of his voice is realized. “I Am the King” has a more traditional metal feel with mid-paced HammerFall+Priest-ish riffing. The vocals at the beginning of “Christ Hammer” are quite impressive with Sean singing in several octaves blended together. Cage has crafted some wickedly catchy choruses that in a couple places, repeat just a little too often, and it’s noticeable on “Christ Hammer” or on another of the album’s better tracks “From Death To Legend”. I really like some of the soloing in this one…not face melting, just tasty semi-neo-classical melody. But no worries, there are plenty of ripping leads on the album offering one of the band’s other highlights with the abundance of lead guitars.

If you are a fan of Priest-inspired metal (and who isn’t?), then you should be all over this band immediately! Just don’t expect lyrical brilliance…the strength lies in the music. The other minor criticism is the sameness….yes it’s all awesome, but may seem a little one sided to those who are not totally infatuated with the style.
Track Listing

1. Ascension
2. Hell Destroyer
3. I Am the King
4. The Circle of Light
5. Christ Hammer
6. Born in Blood
7. Abomination
8. Innauguration
9. Rise of the Beast
10. Cremation of Care
11. Bohemian Grove
12. Final Proclamation
13. From Death to Legend
14. Legion of Demons
15. Betrayal
16. Fall of the Angels
17. Fire and Metal
18. Beyond the Apocalypse
19. The Lords of Chaos
20. Metal Devil


Sean Peck - Vocals
Dave Garcia - Guitars
Anthony Wayne McGinnis - Guitars
Mike Giordano - Bass
Norm Leggio - Drums

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