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In an era where computer technology is king, it was through the internet that Death Dealer was formed. Ross: "Death Dealer formed early 2012 when Stu Marshall and Sean Peck who had collaborated previously, met Mike Davis and Rhino when on tour in California. Stu was blown away by Sean's vocal abilities and a bond was formed. Around February, Sean would send me messages on Facebook now and then, and Stu started talking to me as well. The conversation quickly went to, 'Hey Ross, would you like to play on some songs we've done?' I said sure, not knowing what it would sound like."

"Well, after they sent the first tune over, I was blown away, then Stu and Sean tell me they want me to join this band, called Death Dealer. I say, 'Who else is in the band?
Thanks to adg211288 for the addition and Kev Rowland, Time Signature for the updates

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.. Album Cover 4.11 | 6 ratings
War Master
Power Metal 2013


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Album · 2013 · Power Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Time Signature
Hammer down...

Genre: power metal

A supergroup of sorts, Death Dealer released their debut album ”War Master” earlier this year, and we are dealing with hyper-aggressive power metal here, complete with thunderous drums and screaming vocals. Yet there is plenty of melody in the form of, for instance, larger-than-life choruses and twin-guitar leads. The keyword here is simply METAL.

'Death Dealer','Warmaster', 'Heads Spikes Walls' are uptempo tracks with plenty of references to thrash metal and traditional metal. 'Never to Kneel' is a heavier affair, while 'While Children of the Flames' is an atmospheric and quite heavy ballad with an interesting twist in the form of a whistled melody (which for some reason makes me think of spaghetti westerns). The tempo goes back up in 'Curse of the Heretic' which is a lesson in crushing US power metal and features some pretty cool passages, which also applies to 'Liberty or Death'. You may have heard the title 'Hammer Down' before, and if you're thinking Empires of Eden, then you are correct, because this is a version of the song 'Hammer Down' from Empires of Eden's ”Channeling the Infinite” (Stu Marshall is also involved in Empires of Eden). The Death Dealer-version is darker and heavier than the Udo-fronted Empires of Eden version, which in turn is more intense and more epic. I do not know which version I prefer, so I just consider myself lucky that there are two awesome versions of the same awesome song out there. 'The Devils Mile' starts out an atmospheric ballad, but turns into a highway-friendly uptempo rocker, whereas 'Waiths on the Wind' has a heavy and stomping drive to it.

The production is well-defined but not at all polished. The musicianship is top notch, but what else would we expect from a line-up that features the likes of Stu Marshall, Sean Peck, and Ross the Boss? And let us not forget Mike Davis and Rhino. The listener is treated to blazing guitar solos, screaming vocals and booming drums.

In other words: this is METAL!


Album · 2013 · Power Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Kev Rowland
This may not be a name known to many, but I am sure that it won’t take too long before that changes, as here we have a power metal supergroup that is going to make metal fans sit up and take notice. Imagine Manowar at full speed with Ripper on vocals and you make get close to what this is all about. Now, I remember when ‘Battle Hymns’ came out, and still have the copy that I bought on the day of release. I was blown away by the great musicianship and the over the top tongue in cheek approach to metal, and now here it is happening all over again. Why do I keep referencing Manowar? In many ways that is because this is a logical continuation of that band with both Ross The Boss (guitars) and Rhino (drums) involved here, with the rest of the line-up being Stu Marshall (Dungeon - guitars), Mike Davis (Halford - bass) and Sean Peck (Cage – vocals).

The song titles such as “Never To Kneel” and “War Master” brings back the days of when the guys were screaming “Death to False Metal”. There is nothing at all false about this: it is in your face and dares you to keep turning that volume dial up just a little louder. Just playing this brings a smile to my face, it is so refreshing after listening to all those bands who take themselves too seriously. It is escapist, and great fun. True, Sean has a great voice yet does have a tendency to overdo the screams, and he could do with being a little more melodic at times but really these are just minor niggles.

I find it hard to believe that Ross The Boss is the same guy who used to be in The Dictators in the 70’s, as here he sounds like a young gun with plenty to prove. This is a great album, let the guys take you away into a fantasy land and have a blast.


Album · 2013 · Power Metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
War Master (2013) is the debut full-length album by multi-national power metal act Death Dealer. The band is made up of members and former members of artists such as Cage, Manowar, Ross the Boss and Lizzy Borden, with the members mostly hailing from the United States but also from Germany and Australia. Specifically the members are Sean Peck (Cage) on vocals, Ross the Boss (of band of the same name/ex-Manowar) and Stu Marshall (ex-Dungeon, Empires of Eden et al) on guitars, Mike Davis (Halford, ex-Lizzy Borden) on bass and Rhino (ex-Manowar, Holy Force et al) on drums. I guess the term supergroup can be fairly applied here.

With the members having backgrounds within many different power metal bands for the most part, it shouldn’t any surprise that this is the style that Death Dealer also plays. But don’t expect an extra cheesy brand of power metal based on that cover art and its heavily armoured futuristic warrior dude taking on a horde of goblins. Death Dealer unashamedly represents traditional values in their power metal, placing them firmly within the USPM side of the genre, although their sound has much less cross-over with traditional heavy metal than a lot of USPM acts. It’s mostly fast paced stuff all the way here! And with songs like their namesake Death Dealer and Warmaster they produce an absolutely intense and epic sound, not least because of the impressive vocal range of singer Sean Peck.

War Master is no one trick pony though. With Children of Flames Death Dealer proves they’re not above including balladry within a power metal album. Unlike the majority of power metal bands though doing a ballad doesn’t mean turning that cheese dial up to the max, it’s still just as much off as with their speedy tracks, and Peck really shines during the song. Additionally on Curse of the Heretic the band introduce a theatrical approach featuring some spoken word, and dramatic symphonic elements. For the most part though they stick to doing what they do the very best, and it’s tracks like Death Dealer, Warmaster, The Devils Mile and Heads Spikes Walls stand out as the best of the bunch, the latter of which even has a little bit of crossover into thrash metal territory. All of the songs are great or better, but it’s these four that I’ve got stuck in my head.

Death Dealer has produced an impressive first album together in War Master. I’d expect nothing less from such a group of metal veterans and they’ve in no way disappointed me. This is a killer album in every sense of the word. If you like classic metal in either a traditional or power metal vein (speed metal fans will probably want a look in too) then this is one album you don’t want to be passing up on. And, to reword a lyric that appears to be their slogan: Death Dealer they be named. An exceptional grade rating is deserved.


(Originally written for Heavy Metal Haven:

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