Man does time ever fly. I can remember it like it was yesterday: Late 1997, I’m sitting in my dorm room one morning after a drunken frosh week binge and I’m trying to ease my hangover with coffee and Advil, biding my time by searching for some new metal bands when I come across a demo called THE FINAL SIGN by this band called Crystal Eyes. The song “Extreme Paranoia” is awesome and the rest is quite good power metal for the time. Fast forward to 2004 and I have completely lost contact of the band, despite the fact that they’ve released 2 full-lengths since then. VENGEANCE DESCENDING is the band’s third album – how does the band stack up in 2004?
Not to well I’m afraid. Everything on VENGEANCE DESCENDING is pure standard power metal, complete with silly lyrics (“Child of Rock”? “Metal Crusade”?), overblown vocal melodies, and song lengths that could easily be trimmed by a good 2 minutes apiece. Verdict: purely average metal that would have been fresh ten years ago but is dated now. There are moments on here though. The title track is a great opener with its slashing riffs and speed assault. “The Wizard’s Apprentice” also impresses, despite its length, helped immensely by the guest vocals of Lost Horizon’s Daniel Heiman. Still, this is totally average power metal that we’ve all heard a bazillion times before. It’s not bad it’s just so…average. I was expecting more after the promise of the demos.
If you’re hankering for some power metal and must have everything released in the genre, by all means, pick this up as it will give you what you expect. For everyone else I’d recommend spending your money elsewhere as you’ll have no reason to play this one more than once.
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