Friday, September 22, 2006

Death Angel-The art of dying, 2004

Death Angel did three studio albums between 1987 and 1990. The band were all in their teens when they released their debut "The Ultra Violence". The debut was raw, but showed a strong speed metal sound. The second album 1988's "Frolic through the park" was more organized, but toned down a little. Then in 1990 they released "Act 3" which puts in funk parts and has more pace changes, but it works overall. The band then had some line-up changes and some of the members continued on as the Organization which is also the title of a song off of their third album. Then in 2001 the band was asked reform to play a one time show at a benefit for Testament singer Chuck Billy who was suffering from cancer. They played the show and over the next few months entertained thoughts of reforming. They decided to reform and they had four of the five original members in the new line-up. In early 2004 they released this album "The art of dying". This album for the most part, picks up where "Act 3" left off. It had the band's solid, tight chugging speed metal riffs plus it has various other styles and pace changes tossed in. The album actually shreds for the first three tracks and I thought at that point that it might be the band's first great album. However after that it slows down a little and goes back and forth between dazzling songs and decent ones. For the most part it's late 80's/early 90's style speed metal, but fresh enough to keep my interest. They sound comfortable with what they are doing and it is heavy enough. I think the fact that they were so young when they started does help now. All things considered I think it is their best effort as it's just a hair better than Act 3. Most reunion albums tend to be gigantic disappointment and that's if anyone cares at all. However with "The Art of dying" Death Angel showed that they still had something left to give.


Blogger Ray Van Horn, Jr. said...

I still have yet to hear this album. I've always loved The Ultra Violence, but it's so expensive and rare on CD so I only have Act III at the moment. I will always dig "Bored" because it was the perfect interruption to all of the fluff on Headbangers Ball.

On the recent Flotsam and Jetsam DVD I reviewed, you see Death Angel hovering on the side of the stage, looking eager to get their set going!

9:32 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Ray-I wonder if that dvd was filmed at the Flotsam and Jetsam/Death Angel/Armored Saint show that happened this year in San Francisco? I beleive Armored Saint had their set taped for a possible dvd release.

4:48 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

My biggest complaint about this album are the lyrics. They borderline on silly in some spots. Other than that, I liked it a lot. I hope that they put out something new soon.

6:40 AM  
Blogger Ray Van Horn, Jr. said...

Nope, Mark, it was filmed in Japan, and it might've been that set of bands. I heard the Saint was doing that, but it wasn't this gig.

5:10 AM  

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