FINAL VENGEANCE - ...WITHIN THE REALM (TMU Records)
US Metal fanatics; hold your breath and be armed and ready for another gem in this fantastic subgenre of Heavy Metal! Surfing on the Myspace.com pages I was attracted by an avatar from a band called Final Vengeance. Don't ask me why but I knew I had to look on their page. The first listen to the songs really blew me away! This is the kind of Metal I am living for; varied US Power Metal with a lot of technical arrangements and high pitched vocals!
Final Vengeance seems to be a part of the Texas Classic Metal scene. Texas? Yes, at this particular area stood the cradle of my favorite band Helstar but also bands like Militia, Watchtower and Solitude Aeturnus were Texan. Final Vengeance is a band that rose out of the ashes from two bands; Final Assault and Vengeance. We go back to 1985(!) to discover the first demo of Final Assault and later on the ''Second Coming'' demo. There was never an official release and be sure this is a pity! I'm sure both bands are unknown to all of us and I doubt a lot of people know about Final Vengeance!
Final Vengeance contains three remarkable members; Alex Robles behind the microphone and axe men Izzy Munoz and Ruben Vela. Final Vengeance is not only influenced by their Texan Metal brothers Helstar (''Remnants Of War'' era) but is going back to the traditional roots of NWOBHM (Satan, Cloven Hoof,...) and Progressive Metal (Fates Warning, Queensryche in their older works). This album contains both previous mentioned demos and is really worth buying this gem if all I've said until now is giving you a serious kick!
If you're into very varied and often emotional technical arrangements, mixed with powerful ingredients, a dark atmosphere you will be astonished by 'Within The Realm'. Both guitar players deliver one after another amazing and sophisticated riff, fast fingered guitar solos and interesting guitar melodies. Also the classic guitars, listen to 'M.G.III', are amazing and breathtaking! At 'Dark Side' you'll even hear superb twin guitars with a neo-classical touch! The mid tempo songs on difficult rhythms by the drums and bass are remarkable! Another impressive song is the dark and sinister 'Voices From Beyond', containing all elements that makes me proud being a Metal fan and... first class vocals!
Talking about the vocals you can expect a typical superlative US Power Metal singer in vein of James Rivera, Tim Owens (Winters Bane era), Geoff Tate, William Wren (Oracle, Mystic Force) and even a bit of King Diamond. As a matter of fact Final Vengeance reminds me a lot to the first Winters Bane, good old Liege Lord and Oracle, the band who released the mighty classic album ''As Darkness Reigns'' in 1993. Incredible vocals to be discovered here, lifting the music up to the highest possible level. The only thing I pity is the production, a bit dated but still strong enough to give this release one after another spin. A re-recoding of these songs would be amazing, making it one of my all time favorite albums.
Nothing new to discover here but 80's Metal purists could do far worse than this band as all the elements that made that period of Metal so special are here for you, just a few clicks on your PC and a few dollars are necessary! Final Vengeance contains the essence and spirit of Classic 80's Power Metal as well as any band, then or now. Put together a vocalist who owns two true clean Metal lungs and a soaring vocal sound, graceful guitar harmonies with just the right amount of power and technical but effective songwriting and the result is a trip down memory lane.
So, another precious stone is ready to be discovered by all US Metal fans! If you want to lay your hands on this superb release just surf to: http://www.myspace.com/finalvengeancetx . I can only hope this band reunites definitely, the sooner the better!
My Points: 90 / 100
Metal To Infinity co-editor and US Metal brother Officer Nice already reviewed this Final Vengeance album lately but please allow me to give you my point of view as well. This amazingly beautiful effort, unleashed by Texas Metal Underground Records in 2009, contains nothing but excellent US Metal in its purest form. For some of you out there a style of music not worth to adore these days, well we at MTI don't care about that opinion - we will always believe in the mighty forces of US Metal and that's an expression coming straight out of my god damn heart!
Never underestimate Texas based Metal because their scene already showed more than once how great some of the Texas based bands really are. Refresh your mind and check out troops like Militia, Rigor Mortis, Helstar, Gammacide, Anialator and Ripper to name but a few! Entitled ''...Within The Realm'', on the frontcover the bandname has been announced as Final Vengeance but keep in mind there are actually two bands to enjoy on this CD. There are 6 tracks from the demo ''The Second Coming'' originally released in 1988 by a band called Final Assault. Actually the band was formed in 1985 and unleashed one, debut demo entitled ''First Warning'' before. One year after the release of ''The Second Coming'', they changed their band name into Vengeance and worked out a new self titled demo in 1989. Superb initiative from TMU Records to bring on these ('88 / '89) demo's out on one CD entitled ''...Within The Realm''. As bonus they've added one 'Live' bonus song to the tracklist.
Actually I can be quite short about the style of music enjoyable on this CD. This is what Classic US Power Metal is all about. Have to admit that the production is not that great but keep in mind that the originals dated from late 80s. Being a natural born US Metal fanatic, I really don't give a damn about a 'not too polished' production, I even like it ! Immediately clear like crystal water, both Final Assault and Vengeance to sound BRILLIANT! High pitched vocals mainly in the vein of almighty John Cyriss / Geoff Tate, Andy Waitkus (ex-Zions Abyss who unfortunately died by a car crash in 1996), Rob Michael (Have Mercy), Rick Baez (Amulance),... you’ll get the picture I guess.
US Power Metal released between the mid eighties and very early nineties - be sure it were some of the best years in this genre of music. The passion among musician, the focus, the driving force during live performances,... different that what it is nowadays and unforgettable for all those experienced the 80s Metal scene themselves. Guitarists in charge named Ruben Vela and Alex Beltron - I'm speechless basically! They can hold it nice and easy at one moment to explode a bit later on... I don't know for sure if these guys are still active these days but one thing's for sure... this effort delivers shivers down my spine!
First song does reminds me of 'Devil In Disguise' from Kraze - what a voice!!! Also, be aware for the song 'M.G.III' for sure - played with a lot of passion for technical old school US Power Metal... this one really bites from deep within! Under the band name Vengeance - shivers run down my back during the amazing 'Dark Side' - due to the excellent vocal use and magnificent guitar tactics, I feel the need to hear some more. Longest runner of the entire CD calls 'Within The Realm' comes along and 'totally overwhelmed' is the only way out to express my feelings about this one. All on board - detailed perfection and I'm thrilled (again!). In the vein of Amulance appears the great 'Voices From Beyond' and than the curtain strikes down with a live song 'Awaken The Child', recorded at The Stardust Ballroom in Corpus Christi on June - 26 of the year 1986.
To me, CD releases like ''...Within The Realm'' can be considered as Classic US Metal masterpieces! The production might be not that good at some moments but actually - I don't really care. As for myself, the sound is more than decently acceptable enough to enjoy each song with full force. A US Metal present from heaven - I played the entire CD for several times so far and I can't get enough of it so bring on the songs once again please... US Power Metal at its best and still reigning in a supreme way !!!
My Points: 95 / 100