Released: 2004, Magic Circle Music
This gets better each time I listen to it. An early signing on Manowar’s own label Magic circle music it seems every Joey DeMaio touches turns to gold. He has a great ear because this discs sounds awesome. David Feinstein always did the production and the two veterans combined forces to make a killer sounding disc.
It looks sharp too with another fine cover by Eric Phillipe that matches the cover concept well. This is one thing I don’t get. The label is pushing this as the triumphant return and debut of Feinstein. The title is THIRD WISH presumably referring to Elf, The Rods and his solo career. This isn’t actually his debut solo album at all. He had another solo CD (ONE NIGHT IN THE JUNGLE) from 2000 which did nothing…so don’t believe the hype…this is actually his fourth kick at the cat and he is perhaps lucky to be in the position he is in today. Many artists don’t get a second chance these days.
Somehow David Feinstein soldiers on and has released a very solid slab of metal. Having uber-talented and under-rated vocalist John West doesn’t hurt your cause either. At times John makes this album from the powerful screams on ‘Rebelution’ to the soulful melodic ballad components on ‘Third Wish’, he is a vocal titan. The rest of the band are not familiar too me but certainly no slouches, keeping the groove locked down and in the pocket. Solos? Well, Feinstein is no Yngwie but he is competent. It is not really a shredders album and the song is often the focus so solos seem to take a back seat.
The keys add touches of atmosphere more as a backdrop than anything.
Great songs with killer production, love the guitar tone, everything loud and thick and full the way a metal album should sound. It takes talented people to bring out this kind of sound. Lyrically, it’s rock and roll; meaning it’s not going to win any prizes for originality or thought-provoking prose but still it’s a fun head-banging listen and easy on the ears. The good catchy choruses help the cause making this a memorable and catchy disc.
A highlight for me would be the title track, ‘Third Wish’ an epic song with many moods and changes but strangely enough not fast at all. It is not a ballad but more along the lines of songs like ‘Alexander The Great’. What can I say? If you like Iron Maiden I can virtually guarantee you will like this CD.