Released: 2012, Pure Steel
The relatively new label, Pure Steel (and it’s affiliates Pure Rock, Pure Prog, Pure Legends etc), is rapidly becoming one of my favourite Metal record labels. In light of a number of great releases and the high quality from the label, I want to do a little feature and look back at seven PURE STEEL albums from 2012 you may have missed including Alltheniko, Custard, In Aevum Agere, Phantom X, Power Theory, StormRider and Sleepy Hollow. Please feel to enjoy the reviews of all these fine releases in our Pure Steel feature, as well as previous published reviews of New Eden, Emerald and Axehammer.
Celebrating their tenth anniversary, this Power Metal, Power Trio hail from Italy. The band has moved from being indie to Pure Steel making that the fourth label in the bands history, however despite label instability, Alltheniko has maintained a surprisingly stable lineup with no changes from the debut. The somewhat oddly titled BACK IN 2066 (THREE-HEAD MUTANT CHRONICLES) also sports an odd album cover featuring, yes, a three head mutant and the bands spiky, Annihilator-inspired logo. The album title isn’t the only odd part the song-titles suffer from poor English and awkward phrases, but that may add to the bands appeal.
BACK IN 2066 is another good slab of Power/Thrash/Metal and a hint of rock ‘n’ roll thrown in for good measure. Check out the song, ‘Dance Of Mutant Knight for example an example of the rock vibe present in some of the songs with the simplistic drum-beat and easy going riff. The product is good and they make quite a bit of noise for a trio. Other observers have noted the similarity in vocal tone and delivery of Dave Nightfight to that of Blackie Lawless, which is a good thing, a raw and powerful Metal voice.
The album starts with the time-worn tradition of having a nice, brief acoustic intro that successfully counter-points the fierce opening salvo. Bands have doing this since the mid-80’s when it became really popular when everyone from Dokken to Metallica had an acoustic opener. Some of the bass lines have a thrash-like feel ala Megadeth or Annihilator and there are some ripping solos all over the place and Luke The Idol keeps pretty busy on the drums for the most part. This busy, yet simple sound is sometimes hard to wrap your head around especially with the myriad of influences on display.
I think the bands somewhat unique character will help them stand out from the pack, but may also hinder them as some more traditional fans might find the unique blend a bit too diverse. Personally, I think it is great, it is better to be a little bit quirky I suppose than be one of the clones. BACK IN 2066 is a solid, competent and worthwhile Metal album. Perhaps that doesn’t sound like a glowing endorsement but I enjoy the record, it’s fun and easy to listen to and enough character to stand out.