Strings To A Web
RAGE is a German band that has been around since 1984. Although they are a band that never broke it big in the states, they often made their way into all of the major metal magazines over here in Europe. As a result they have always had a steady backing on this side of the pond.
With their latest release Strings To A Web they have tried to mix the old with the new. Sometimes this works, and sometimes it doesn’t. Case in point RATT’s Infestation came out earlier this year, they focused on updating their classic sound and released an album that was relevant for 2010, and their legacy. This is that opposite of what other bands have done, like say MOTLEY CRUE, who tried updating their sound by mimicking modern rock bands like PAPA ROACH and LINKIN PARK. The reason I bring this up is because RAGE has done the latter. Don’t get me wrong the album is alright, and I think to an extent it is cool to branch out and do different things, but if you’ve always played say glam metal, it would be hard to sell a black metal album to your fans, no?
The album is full of melodic metal in the vein of say WINGER, has parts that are flat out borrowed from VAN HALEN and JUDAS PRIEST, and adds touches of BLACK LABEL SOCIETY and METALLICA to boot. The opening track “The Edge Of Darkness” starts out with a blatant rip off of VAN HALEN’s “Mean Streets”, although the JUDAS PRIEST influence is felt throughout the album, the solo for “Saviour Of The Dead” sounds like a complete rip off of the end of “Love Bites”. Only sped up, think Tom Morello style. The song itself sound is completely in the vein of BLS, and the riff actually sounds a lot like OZZY OSBOURNE’s “Thunder Underground” off of Ozzmosis, which Zakk Wylde played on. When first hearing the closing track “Tomorrow Never Comes”, I thought I was actually listening to BEATALLICA! Lead singer/bassist Peter “Peavey” Wagner actually sounds like BEATALLICA’s singer/bassist Jamyz Lennfield on the track throwing around plenty of faux Hetfield heys!
The album does head into symphonic metal territory for a few tracks, which in my opinion comes off pretty frail. This is the biggest determent to the album. If they were trying to go in a KAMELOT direction, they ended up in a symphonic WINGER direction instead. I have no beef with Winger, it’s just that this part of the album sound pretty weak, and comes off like a very cheap imitation of this sub-genre of metal.
If you’re a fan of the band I’d recommend you checking it out, if not just purchase some select tunes like the aforementioned “The Edge OF Darkness” and “Saviour Of The Dead” along with “Purified” and “Hunter and Prey”. These are the strongest tracks in my opinion, the rest is unfortunately just a lot of filler. My biggest issue is that I’ve heard all of the this a million times before in a much more entertaining fashion. It seems as if the band is just throwing a bunch of things up on the wall to see what does and does not stick.
Victor M. Ruiz