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Satan: Cruel Magic

NWOBHM legends Satan returned to the metal scene after decades away with 2013's excellent Life Sentence, following that up in 2015 with the equally superb Atom by Atom, and now after three years their third record since their reunion, Cruel Magic, is here via Metal Blade Records. The line-up of Satan here in 2018 comprises:

Brian Ross - Vocals
Russ Tippins - Guitars
Steve Ramsey - Guitars
Graeme English- Bass
Sean Taylor- Drums

If you've listened to any of the trio of recent releases, you of course know that this band has not lost a step since their classic 1983 debut Court in the Act. Cruel Magic has a much rawer feel than its two predecessors, recorded mostly live in the studio, with final engineering & mixing performed by Dave Curle and Dario Mollo, giving the sound an 'in your face' type of result as if the band were right there in your living room playing for you. While some might like this more primal approach, I can also see others who preferred the more 'produced' aspect of their last two albums. Either way, it's always about the songs, and Satan do not disappoint on that front. Once again delivering speedy metal with a boatload of hooks and tremendous twin guitar mastery, tunes such as "The Doomsday Clock", "Into the Mouth of Eternity", and "Legions Hellbound" gallop with relentless aggression and seem unearthed from some newly discovered 1984 NWOBHM time capsule. "Ophidian" has a cool, early '80s Judas Priest element to it, while rippers such as "My Prophetic Soul", "Who Among Us", and "Death Knell for a King" just hit on all cylinders, perfectly harnessing the style of the bands debut all those years ago, as well as Iron Maiden's initial offerings. Ross and his upper register wail is the perfect foil for these fast paced, headbanging tunes, the dual guitar attack of Tippins & Ramsey allowing him plenty of room to soar as they deliver one hellacious riff after another, their leads also weaving and darting throughout these very busy and pummeling tracks.

Awesome from start to finish (and don't miss the dark, moody closer "Mortality") Cruel Magic is another winner from Satan, a legendary band who are making music just as vital & challenging as their first go round now decades later. Keep it up guys!!!

See more about this release on our recent YouTube show!

Track Listing

  1. Into the Mouth of Eternity 5:37
  2. Cruel Magic 5:07
  3. The Doomsday Clock 3:47
  4. Legions Hellbound 5:00
  5. Ophidian 4:27
  6. My Prophetic Soul 4:36
  7. Death Knell for a King 3:53
  8. Who Among Us 6:01
  9. Ghosts of Monongah 5:14
  10. Mortality 6:00

Added: September 29th 2018
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 843
Language: english

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