SATAN – LIFE SENTENCE – LISTENABLE RECORDS – OUT NOW

SATAN – LIFE SENTENCE – LISTENABLE RECORDS – OUT NOW

Back in the days when I did my first steps in previously unknown metalworld I discovered bands like Exciter, Culprit, Wild Dogs and the classics Judas Priest, Saxon, Accept, Raven, Iron Maiden, etc. But one album “Court In The Act” from Satan was a revelation to me. The guitars on this album from 1983 blew my mind. Later in 1985 4/5 of the band put out “Out Of Reach” under the moniker Blind Fury. That also smashing platter introduced a slighty more polished sound but again the guitars where out of this world. Satan resurrected and released an EP and a follow up album. This was also a great release but the band fell apart afterwards. Out of the ashes of Satan arose Pariah who released two albums (and resurrected in 1998 with the third album). Also the folk metal band Skyclad has two former Satan members in his ranks. But “Court In The Act” was for many an outstanding album and the fans kept shouting for a reunion. But the organizers of the yearly festival Keep It True accomplished what before seemed impossible. Satan would be doing a set on K.I.T. XIV. The band got such reaction from the crowd that they decided to go on. When the news of a new album was spread, many fans could not wait to hear the result of this dream come true.

Satan  is:

Brian Ross – vocals
Steve Ramsey – guitar
Russ Tippins – guitar
Sean Taylor – drums
Graeme English – bass

LIFE SENTENCE
From the first sounds of this splatter vinyl is abundantly clear you’re in for a real treat. Crystal clear and fast riffs tempt your inner ears! The middle section is ultra melodic and brings Blind Fury in mind. The twin-axe attack that follows transports me to the riff heaven. This album is simply the sequel of the thirty year old “Court In The Act” from 1983. But rest a sure, it is not a copy of that classic. During “2025” you can hear some new elements. I detect a fast bluesy flavor and a vocal piece with Queen allures. I can only hope the music in 2025 will be as good as this. The voice of Brian has survived the test of time and sounds like its 1983 again. Steve Ramsey and Russ Tippins are true magicians and the sounds they produce with their six strings are truly unbelievable. Both guitar wizards have the gift of letting their incredible fast played riffs sound very melodic and sometimes even catchy! Just lend your ear to “Siege Mentality” and you certainly will catch my drift. On “Incantation” Brian sings a little different and also includes a few high screams. The contrast between the extraordinary guitar sound and the way Brian sings is high and becomes the signature of the Blackmore & blues inspired solo. The riffs you hear on “Testimony” break the speed limit, but still sound melodic! Amazing….

The bass has his moment during the intro of “Tears Of Blood”. Some of the riffs remind me a bit of the early Cloven Hoof stuff. The narrating middle section is spread over heavenly riffs! The title track has a wide range of different styles of guitar playing and can be seen as one long guitar frenzy. In “Personal demons” there are influences from other musical genres and they use some backing vocals. The solos in the break are again pure polished diamonds. For closers blues influenced guitars let romance slips into the scene. Even Brian sounds very sensitive. “Another Universe” starts as a ballade but after 90 seconds a galloping riff pours some punch over the romance. This track diverts the most from the know ‘Satan-format’. It shows that the band isn’t afraid of experimenting. Something I always love on an album.

Conclusion:
Oh Satan, where have you been those past 30 years? Finally we are reunited. No I’ve not become a follower of the Dark Lord. But this album has blown me away from the first listen. The songwriting is absolutely great and the guitars are simply out of this world. Fans from the first Satan album will love this platter. This album is a must have for fans of fabulous guitar! I know for sure that ‘Life Sentence’ will end up high in my top 10 list for 2013. I just can’t wait to hear some of the new tracks when they come to Alcatraz Metal Fest in August!

The album is simply the follow up of the debut. Look at the artwork, read the album title and listen to these sounds! You’ll be hooked for good…..

Tracklist:

  1. Time To Die
  2. Twenty Twenty Five
  3. Cenotaph
  4. Siege Mentality
  5. Incantations
  6. Testimony
  7. Tears Of Blood
  8. Life Sentence
  9. Personal Demons
  10. Another Universe

Score: 4,75 out of 5

Links:
www.satan.com
www.listenable.net

 Tekst Rik Bauters

 

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