Thursday, November 17, 2011

Cirith Ungol-Servants of chaos

Metal Blade

This is a re-issue of a compilation of rare and unreleased stuff, demos, live songs and other assorted material from Cirith Ungol. In case you were living under a rock in the 80's Cirith Ungol were one of the absolute best American metal bands of all time. Yes, I said that and I stand by it. They formed years before finally releasing their debut "Frost and fire" in 1981 and it was the first of their four studio albums. These guys were a blend of the likes of Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, early Rush and others. Yet there is no doubt they developed their own sound and really establish themselves as not just a solid band, but as a rather unique sounding act during their run. This album has 31 tracks and we get a lot of material that will give you a taste of what was so great about this band. Which is the heavy riffs, the controlled pacing, the quirky vocals and just their stellar ability to create interesting moods. Even live they excelled as you get hear on the handful of live songs included on this collection. The album also has some odd ball choices too. We get some seriously under produced tracks that show promise, but lack the attention to detail fans have come to expect from at least their first three studio albums. Towards the middle of the collection there are several tracks that sound like noodling around. These tracks had me thinking the guys were jamming around one night and someone switched on a cassette player and they poked around for a few minutes. Not that it isn't worth a listen, but these few tracks are certainly for the die hard fan and even then I doubt most people would want to hear these songs more than twice at the most. Still out of 31 tracks the bulk of the material is a treat for fans and more than enough to convince those unfamiliar with them about what was special about these guys.

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