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Saint – Hell Blade

Saint – Hell Blade (2009, Retroactive Records)

1. “(The Ascent)” … 0:39
2. “The Blade” … 3:37
3. “To The Cross” … 3:42
4. “Crying In The Night” … 3:45
5. “Hell Train” … 4:11
6. “Endless Night” … 4:16
7. “You & Me” … 3:49
8. “New World Order” … 5:01
9. “SinnerPeace” … 4:39
10. “Hell Blade” … 5:23

Josh Kramer – Lead Vocals
Jerry Johnson – Guitar
Richard Lynch – Bass, Backing Vocals
Bill Brost – Drums, Backing Vocals

Producer: Richard Lynch

Spreading my metallic wings yet again, Saint is a band I’ve never tried before but I kept reading so many positive words about Hell Blade, I picked it up in early 2010. The printed words that grabbed me most about this group were “Judas” and “Priest”. I read more than one review comparing Saint to the Metal Gods, and it’s not as if this band is a clone and set out to out-Priest Priest, but you can certainly hear the influence. For example, “Crying In The Nights” sounds like some lost piece of cheese Priest might’ve recorded for Turbo. Other than the music, the main similarity between these two bands is the vocals. Josh Kramer’s delivery comes off very much like Rob Halford even if he does not display the same piercing cries.

So I’m told Saint is a Christian metal act but you wouldn’t really know it. Religion, evil, Hell, end of the world, etc. has always been heavy metal fodder and the album cover is pretty darn heavy metal and doesn’t tip you off to this band being a Christian act at all. They don’t beat you over the head with their beliefs like some Christian acts do.

If anything, when I first heard of Saint, I thought their name was meant to be ironic and I had the idea that the played a much more darker, heavier type of metal. Luckily, they don’t. It’s good ol’ traditional heavy metal through and through!¬†Good metal is good metal and Saint’s Hell Blade is entirely comprised of it! This album is a solid addition to any metal fan’s collection and I plan on checking out their earlier stuff as well.

Highlights: “The Blade”, “Crying In The Night”, “Hell Train”, “Endless Night”, “New World Order”

Albums I Missed in 2009

As in 2008, there were a number of albums released this year that I didn’t get around buying. Money may come from trees but it surely doesn’t grow on them! Some of these albums I’ve been aware of for awhile, others I just recently found out about. Oh well, here’s some 2009 releases I plan on picking up sometime in the near future…

3 Inches of Blood – Here Waits Thy Doom: They finally got rid of their “screamo” vocalist so now it’s all down to Cam Pipes’ shrill pipes. I’ve never had a problem with the music, just the second vocalist. I’ll probably get this one pretty soon because what I’m hearing online is great.

House of Lords – Cartesian Dreams: I had been waffling on this one for quite some time, then I thought I had finally decided to not buy it due to some wimpy songs I heard but I’ve read some more reviews, previewed some more songs and now I desperately want it! I’m no stranger to House of Lords, but I’ve never bought an album by them.

Bulletboys – 10c Billionaire: I’ve actually ordered this album TWICE this year (once from Amazon and once from CD Universe) and both times the order was delayed without notice and in the case of CD Universe they went as far as to delete the listing! I’ve heard cheers and I’ve heard jeers for this album, but I like the two or three songs I’ve heard. I don’t expect to be blown away, but I suspect it’ll be decent. I guess I’ll have to order directly from Chavis Records though.

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