|Stormzone – ‘Death Dealer’ (SPV/Steamhammer)|
|Written by David Whistance|
|Tuesday, 20 April 2010 05:01|
To any Heavy Metal fan over the age of say 35, Neal Kay's name will always be associated with the early Eighties British Heavy Metal scene. He was a champion of the NWOBHM movement, and with the aid of his rock club The Soundhouse helped kick start many of Britain's brightest metal stars. From Raven, Praying Mantis to Tygers Of Pang Tang (whose original lead singer Jess Cox, manages Stormzone) Neal regularly played these bands at his legendary club gaining them much needed exposure with an audience hungry for rock. But it was a lesser-known London band by the name of Iron Maiden that would eventually ensure his name would forever be etched in the Heavy Metal history books with the infamous 'Soundhouse Tapes' EP.
Fast forward thirty years and Neal Kay has put his faith in another Heavy Metal band, co producing their second album 'Death Dealer', step forward Northern Ireland's Stormzone.
If you associate Heavy Metal with cut off denims, stretch jeans, (and in the case of South Wales metal fans a Doc Graham tattoo) rather than a platted goatee beard and a face full of metal, then get 'Death Dealer' into your CD player now!
Ironically if this album had been released thirty years ago then Stormzone would have been on the lips of every young metal head along with the aforementioned NWOBHM stalwarts.
Fronted by former Sweet Savage, Fastway, Emerald and Den Of Thieves vocalist Harv Stormzone (John Harbinson) they have a truly great singer that has paid his dues to the metal cause. The album kicks off with a beast of a number, the title track 'Death Dealer' which incidentally replicates former Maiden/Wolfsbane and Über Röck favourite vocalist Blaze Bailey at his Metal best.
The album continues with great consistency, comprising of what can only be termed 'classic old school melodic Heavy Metal'. With tracks such as 'The Memory Never Dies' and 'Immortals' displaying some frentic guitar mastery by guitarists Chris Polin and Keith Harris (sorry no puns...oh fuck it...I hate that duck!).
If you love your Heavy Metal grandiose then you will bask in the glory of '(Destiny Of Legends) The Legend Carries On'. Or you can follow Stormzone into the warren of melodic majesty with the glorious 'Labyrinth.' The choice is yours.
For all true Heavy Metal fans there is one line that we have welded into our metal hearts, and that is 'Stand Up And Fight', as we join Stormzone to fight for our cause via this their anthemic call to arms.
Overall then 'Death Dealer' is a well produced album that will equally appeal to any old school metallers as it will melodic rock fanatics, keeping them both in musical heaven.
Whether or not the album will bring any new fans to the genre only time will tell, but I think we can safely say (and the band will no doubt agree) that we will not be witnessing Stormzone travelling the world in their very own plane any time soon.
However, don't rule out witnessing the band owning stages across Europe or maybe some of the less mainstream UK festivals any time soon promoting this fine slice of classic Heavy Metal.