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Saint Deamon - "Pandeamonium" (CD)

Saint Deamon - "Pandeamonium" CD cover image

"Pandeamonium" track listing:

1. Deception (3:54)
2. The Only One Sane (3:07)
3. Pandeamonium (4:03)
4. Eyes of the Devil (3:13)
5. A Day To Come (4:34)
6. Way Home (2:53)
7. Fallen Angel (4:03)
8. The Deamon Within (3:48)
9. Oceans of Glory (4:33)
10. Fear In A Fragile Mind (4:58)

Reviewed by on August 12, 2009

"Those who like old-fashioned metal, and thrashy but vocals-driven tunes will be pleasantly surprised with what Saint Deamon’s 'Pandeamonium' has to offer."

It's very rare that when I review a band I'm not familiar with, I'm so impressed with their release that I go back and seek out their earlier material. In the case of Saint Deamon though, that’s exactly what I did. Despite most bands’ sophomore releases being mediocre in comparison to their debuts, Saint Deamon’s "Pandeamonium" is stellar on its own, and makes you curious enough to see what these guys sounded like the first time around.

One of my favorite styles of metal is old fashioned thrash, the type with a pulsing drumbeat that makes you want to bang your head, and a chugging bass that rumbles like a fine-tuned Harley. Add to that some fancy guitar shreds and a screeching, 80’s style male vocalist, and that’s my idea of heaven. Saint Deamon obviously thinks the same way, as the entire album is chocked full of a mix of all the roots of metal. The album opener, "Deception," features a HammerFall tempo, Whitesnake vocals, Slash style guitar work, and an overall AOR sound that will get you moving and expectantly awaiting the next track.

For those who like the great monster ballads from the 80’s, the title track is sure to become one of your new favorite songs. There’s a bit of piano, and a scaling tempo, as the track crescendos until it burns your eardrums. The scale climbing vocals on this one are the type that only a great male metal vocalist can achieve, and this quickly becomes the kind of song you wish you had the chops to sing along with, because it’s just that powerful.

One track that is somewhat different is "Fallen Angel." It’s actually more power metal in sound, but with the addition of some high end fret work. It’s significantly darker than the rest of the songs, with lots of minor chords on the verses, but the chorus lifts it up and offers the upbeat 80’s style found throughout the rest of the album. Overall, the track is an awesome composition that moves from dark to light, from despair to hope.

The followup track, "The Deamon Within," shows just how well these guys transition from music style to style. It’s seamless and flawless, and you’ll definitely find yourself tapping along to the tattoo of the drumbeat. It’s also great to see both guitar and bass doing their own thing, without drowning out each other.

About the only fault I can find with "Pandeamonium" is the intro on "A Day To Come." It’s not that it doesn’t work, but those who know their 80’s music will recognize a glaring similarity to Whitesnake’s "Here I Go Again." Fortunately it’s just a blip on the map, and Saint Deamon quickly makes this tune their own. The gang chants and smashing drums in the breakdown and closing make this track an epic tune.

Those who like old-fashioned metal, and thrashy but vocals-driven tunes will be pleasantly surprised with what Saint Deamon’s "Pandeamonium" has to offer. It’s a great collection of solid musicianship, and a just plain fun ride that you’ll want to blast from your speakers.

Highs: Old school thrash style reminds us what metal is all about, while the falsetto vocals appeal to fans of more melodic metal.

Lows: Not much, though the Whitesnake similarity on "A Day To Come" is noticeable.

Bottom line: A great choice for fans of all the metal sub-genres of the 80’s, with a focus on old school thrash.

Rated 4.0 out of 5 skulls
4.0 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)