MESSIAH PROPHET - MASTER OF THE METAL (CD, Pure Metal Records)
New - Factory Sealed - Band reissued but basically looks the same as original issue!
"Master of the Metal", circa 1986, sounds rather dated now, but was quite groundbreaking when it was released. It was one of the earliest Christian metal albums and among the better ones of its era. I bought this on cassette maybe in 1987 and was pleased to find it on CD a few years back. I still enjoy listening to it when I dig it out.
While the production quality is not particularly good, but the music is good 80's straight-ahead metal. The songs are well written, with lots of catchy hooks. The vocals are strong and there is some good guitar work throughout the album. Lyrically, the album is fairly bold. Memorably, the last song on the album, "Voice That's Calling", ends with an anthemic series of "Jesus, I will have no gods before You".
If you are into 80's metal, or particuarly if you are interested in Christian metal history, this is worth getting hold of.
1. "Hit and Run" (4:20)
2. "Master of the Metal" (5:01)
3. "For Whom Does the Bell Toll" (4:15)
4. "Fear No Evil" (6:53)
5. "Heavy Metal Thunder" (5:30)
6. "The Friend" (3:43)
7. "Battle Cry" (6:29)
8. "Voice That's Calling" (7:02)
ANGELIC WARLORD REVIEW
Messiah Prophet (previously known as Messiah Prophet Band) experienced a high degree of turnover following the release of its run-of-the-mill 1984 Morada Records debut Rock The Flock: Guitarist Rob Clark departed only to be replaced by rhythm guitarist/vocalist Brian Nicarry, while bassist Joe Shirk and drummer David Thunder supplanted Dean Pellen (bass) and Dave Daubert (drums) respectively. Returning in 1986 with its Pure Metal sophomore effort Master Of The Metal, Messiah Prophet moves primarily in a straightforward heavy metal direction with occasional tendencies towards melodic metal and commercial hard rock. The end result is a significant leap forward by the band musically in that each of the albums eight tracks are well constructed in holding up under noteworthy melodies and memorable chorus lines.
Clark continues to bring to his high quality classic tenor voice. Newcomer Nicarry, however, handles lead vocals on two tracks and proves an equal talent with a similar classic tenor vocal style. Strauss displays demonstrated improvement on lead guitar, proving to be quite the talented musician in bestowing a plethora of his fast paced and fluid soloing abilities. Nicarry helps round out the mix on rhythm guitar, while Shirk and Thunder combine to form a rhythm section defined by steady bass lines and a thunderous (no pun intended) drum sound.
The only factor detracting from Master Of The Metal is a slightly thin sounding production job. The bass deserves to be mixed more prominently, while the drums often sound flat and muffled. The rhythm guitar can lack the needed edge and crispness. Only the lead guitar stands out in the mix as it should.
Getting the album underway to several seconds of open air rhythm guitar, "Heavy Metal Thunder" advances at a determined mid-tempo pace until it reaches a chorus projecting just the right amount of ardent guitar driven energy. A fiery guitar solo holds sway over the extent of a thirty second instrumental passage.