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Released: 2002, Independent
Once in a while a band from nowhere comes along and warms my old metal heart once again and Black Steel is such a band. I am really, really pleased that these newer younger bands are carrying on the 20 year tradition of true metal.
Black Steel is from Australia and after a somewhat obscure, but well received 4 song EP they have unleashed their full-length debut, Destructor. Great packaging, lyrics, photos, etc and a cool cover of a warrior with a digital sword of sorts preparing to do battle with 3 mean looking green monsters rising from the dust (of the Outback maybe?)
Some critics might say that songs like “Breaking the Chains”, and “Bonded by Steel” are dull and unoriginal but I much prefer to suggest that they adhere to the principles of true metal and pay tribute to the concepts that made metal great, fighting, rebellion, power , vengeance, fire and so on.
Black Steel are great true metal in the Hammerfall vein, which is high praise. So why did I give them 3.5 instead of the full four? The songs are just a little…sedate. It’s hard to explain but the guitarist never really cuts loose and let fly when he should. The vocalist has great voice but uses it as a tool, not the weapon of destruction it could be. The drummer doesn’t rage like the hellhammer he could be.
On many levels this CD is flawless, true metal with purity of vision, execution and delivery which makes it almost too safe. This could be the sub-conscious Australian connection talking but DESTRUCTOR reminds me of Pegazus’ first indie CD, flawless yet safe and predictable. When Pegazus injected that element of edge & danger into their songs they jumped to a metal major and I have no doubt that Black Steel can and will do the same.