Thursday, February 10, 2011


Frontiers Records 2011

Fronted by the extremely beautiful Veronica Freeman this San Diego, California heavy metal band will be releasing Dominion (their 3rd full length release) within the next month or so. Produced by Ryan Greene (Megadeth,Alice Cooper, Mr. Big) Dominion features guest appearances by Jeff Pilson (Dokken,Dio), Craig Gordy (Rough Cutt,Dio) and Rudy Sarzo (Quiet Riot,Ozzy Osbourne). Judging by the album cover and the fact that the band are on Frontiers Records I was expecting this to sound like Nightwish or Within Temptation. Thankfully that is far from the case. Benedictum play heavy metal. Not the currently trendy symphonic metal that I can only take so much of but honest to goodness heavy metal! Obviously influenced by bands like Accept,Dio and early Warlock this was just what I had been looking for to review (thanks Mark!). Starting off with the title track your treated to some wicked solos courtesy of guitarist Pete Wells. "At The Gates" is next and is straight up heavy (think Megadeth meets Accept-in fact vocalist Veronica could be Udo Dirkschneider's long lost sister) as is "Seer". In fact it's one first pumping metal tune after another up until "Beautiful Pain". Yes, "Beautiful Pain" does morph into the fired up "Dark Heart" but it starts off slowly in a haunting and beautiful way. "Bang" (featuring bass player Rudy Sarzo) is old school hard rock/metal with some meatly Pantera riffs going on. "Loud Silence" shows off Veronica's range and sounds like a heavier Lita Ford. "Epsilon" has a great sense of melody to go along with the shouted chorus. It features more incredible solos from Pete Wells. The bonus cut "Sanctuary" is probably the softest track on the disc and is both dark and charming. The last track on the disc is the very Dio/Rainbow sounding bonus track "Overture/The Temples of Syrinx". It's a great way to close off this superb disc. Again, I can't tell you how nice it is to hear some female fronted heavy metal that actually sounds heavy. I'm going to have to check out the group's other two discs.


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