Thursday, October 04, 2012

Danger Zone- Undying

Avenue Of Allies

Italy's Danger Zone was formed in the early 80s by guitarist Roberto Priori. In 1984 Danger Zone released the excellent EP, "Victim of Time " on vinyl and the rest is, as they say, history. Or not really as it honestly took the band years to get any sort of recognition, but in the end all Danger Zone was able to muster was a handful of demos. In 1992 the band split-up. It wouldn't be until 2011 that the band would get back together. Releasing the album "Line Of Fire" that same year (review below) the band was back. The thing is "Line Of Fire" featured material that was written/recorded back then (1989) so how would the band stack up to today's heavy metal scene? Just fine thank you. I'm the first to admit that I carry a soft spot when it comes to Danger Zone. When "Victim Of Time" hit my eardrums for the first time it snapped me to attention. So, yes I am a tad bit bias when it comes to this Italian group. They should have been given more attention back in the day for their killer EP, but it seemed to be only in Italy that people knew just how good the band was. From the sounds of "Undying" maybe, just maybe, Danger Zone might get that chance now to bring in new fans. Of of the 12 tracks that make up "Undying" there are a few numbers that are reworkings of previously unreleased tunes from the time period that followed "Line Of Fire". I'd be curious to find out which ones were older numbers verses new numbers although honestly, in the end, it really does not make much of a difference as "Undying" is a nice slab of heavy/power metal with a few tracks flirting with more of a hard rock/traditional heavy metal sound. Joining guitarist Roberto Priori, vocalist Giacomo Gigantelli and drummer Paolo Palmieri is new bassist Roberto Galli. From the moment the album opens (with the straight up metal-infused title cut) you get the impression that Danger Zone haven't missed a beat.The semi-rough vocals of Giacomo Gigantelli fit the mood perfectly. While the title cut almost has this Dio meets Whitesnake vibe the power of "I To I" is undeniable. While guitarist Roberto Priori lays down these sweet licks that wouldn't be out of place on a Dio or Judas Priest (80's version) album Giacomo grabs your attention and your treated to the finest in traditional heavy metal."Half A Chance" is more of the best of early 80's metal (think Mötley Crüe's "Too Fast For Love" meets Dio and you have an idea) while "Paralyzed" is the obligatory ballad. Now, it really isn't my intent to compare Danger Zone's work to other hard rock/metal outs, but a cut like "Hottest Fire" pulls apart the likes of G N' R, Ratt, AC/DC, Judas Priest and Twisted Sister and reassembles them into a power metal cruncher. Other then maybe the keyboard-driven/AOR cut "More Heaven Than Hell" and "Desire" (which sounds like a heavier, pumped up White Lion) "Undying" is more power metal then traditional metal. The mere fact that Danger Zone can write music that has all the best qualities of 80's metal and hard rock with the forcefulness of power metal says a lot. The songs are written in such a way as to emphasize the "rock" aspects of them (the guitars are simply smoother then smooth) so by the time you get to album closer, " Love Still Finds A Way", you feel as if you've had the pleasure of listening to not only a great collection of heavy/power metal numbers, but a great rock and roll LP as well. This is another album that is sure to get repeated plays in my household. Just like a fine woman, once it comes into your life you don't want to let go!


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