Cage - Darker Than Black
My expectations were high before listening to this album for the first time, since I previously had read on numerous websites that this should be something out of the ordinary. I am normally not fond of the american style of power/heavy metal, but there are exceptions and I had my senses all open for what to come.
My aquantance with Cage turned out to be a very pleasant one, and if you like your metal in the veins of Judas Priest around the Painkiller era, and the riffing of Primal Fear to name another band, you will surely find this appealing and I would simply call it pure stupidity to not check out what Cage has to offer, since it's very good and well played metal. Especially in the fastdriven, galloping tunes the parallells can distinctivly be drawn to the just mentioned bands as the solid, clasical riffs are razorsharp and are as metal to the bone as they can get. Sometimes it somes extremely close to the riffing that took place on Painkiller, but as long as there are no obvious ripoffs - who am I to complain?
The sound is a bit naked and raw, and not overproducing has been taken place here and all possible disturbing elements has been left out for the benefit of what counts - the music. From time to time they are touching to realms of the american sound that I never have been able to take to my heart, with the likes of for example Jag Panzer and Iced Earth, but the moments are few and it's bearable. If you don't have anything against that, you will only find it an asset and a compliment to the otherwise very straightforward "european" sound.
There are not many songs that really stand out and causes spontanous praisal to the metal gods except perhaps Philadelphia Experiment and Blood Of The Innocent that are close, but there are on the other hand not any of them that falls under an 8-point barrier. They are all very solid, and there ae no fillers which we unfortunatly are too used to by now on various releases.
This may not be the most darkest or blackest album I have heard, but it sure is Better Than Average. Check it out!