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Kings of the World
Released: 2000, Pavement Music
Classic, straight ahead, no frills, unpretentious metal is what CJSS serves up on Kings of the World, their first CD since the late 80s. CJSS released 2 classic metal CDs in the latter part of the 80s titled World Gone Mad and Praise The Loud then released nothing after. CJSS is comprised of guitar virtuoso David T. Chastain, vocalist Russell Jinkens, bassist Mike Skimmerhorn and drummer Les Sharp. Hence the name CJSS being created from the first initial from each band members last name. At the time CJSS received good reviews of their CD but never got beyond the 2 CD point. In 1999 the band release their first 2 classic albums on one CD entitled 2- 4-1. CJSS followed this up with some shows to promote the disc and in the process realized that they still wanted to record CDs and still found it enjoyable to perform. The fans were also very receptive of the band so they let the word out to the record labels that they were looking for a recording contract. Pavement Music snapped them up after other labels had expressed great interest. CJSS wanted to make the album sound like their older material so they recorded using their old amps and instruments from the 80s. What they have created is a CD which picks up right where their old releases left off.
The title track opens up the disc with the promise that this Cd is going to be nothing short of a classic metal assault. This is one of the strongest tracks on the CD with the guys showing that they have lost nothing in their years apart. "The Final Frontier" is an interesting track focussing on the colonization of the planet Mars. One of the slower yet no less effective songs on the CD is "The Executioner’s Song". It deals with the last day of an innocent mans life before he is executed. Very intense subject matter and one of the best songs on the CD. "Wild in the Streets" cranks things up with some guitar shredding by Chastain. Jinkens voice has changed a small bit since the bands early disc. He now sings a bit more whereas he was a bit more of a screamer. He loses none of his power and proves that he is a top notch metal vocalist. Other standout tunes include "The Fall of Babylon", which is as close as you will get to a ballad on this CD and "Cries of the Dawn". This is a real shredder of a tune and a fitting song to close out the CD.
CJSS have picked up right where they left off. "Kings of the World" is great classic, technical metal. The rhythm section of Sharp and Skimmerhorn are fantastic and nothing needs to be said about David Chastain. Chastain and Jinkens also write most of the songs on the disc while Skimmerhorn helps Chastain with 2 tracks and there is a cover of Jethro Tull’s "Locomotive Breath". Overall a good return for CJSS and a great CD to get if you are interested in 80s style classic, technical metal.
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