PRAYING MANTIS
NWoBHM / Hard Rock / Traditional heavy metal • United Kingdom

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Praying Mantis are an English rock band. Although a part of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) scene, they pursued a musical direction more melodic and AOR-sounding than their contemporaries.

Their formation considerably pre-dated NWOBHM. They were formed in 1974 by the Troy brothers, both college students. Like several NWOBHM bands they made their first available recording at Neal Kay's Soundhouse recording studio, which was released as the Soundhouse Tapes EP in 1979. 1980 saw their profile considerably raised with support slots for Iron Maiden and Ronnie Montrose's Gamma. The attention won them a recording contract with Arista Records and they released their best-known work Time Tells No Lies in 1981. Management and line-up instability undermined their success and Arista dropped them. The following year they signed for Jet Records, but two subsequent singles flopped and the band folded. They had recorded a version of the Russ Ballard penned track
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PRAYING MANTIS Discography

PRAYING MANTIS albums / top albums

.. Album Cover 4.50 | 2 ratings
Time Tells No Lies
NWoBHM 1981
.. Album Cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Predator in Disguise
Hard Rock 1991
.. Album Cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
A Cry for the New World
Hard Rock 1993
.. Album Cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
To the Power of Ten
Hard Rock 1995
.. Album Cover 3.55 | 3 ratings
Forever in Time
Traditional heavy metal 1998
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Nowhere to Hide
Hard Rock 2000
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Journey Goes On
Hard Rock 2003
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Sanctuary
Traditional heavy metal 2009
.. Album Cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Legacy
Hard Rock 2015

PRAYING MANTIS EPs & splits

.. Album Cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
Captured City
NWoBHM 1979
.. Album Cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
Cheated
NWoBHM 1980
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Turn the Tables
NWoBHM 1982
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
This Time Girl
Hard Rock 1991
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Only The Children Cry
Traditional heavy metal 1993
.. Album Cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Metalmorphosis
Traditional heavy metal 2011

PRAYING MANTIS live albums

.. Album Cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
Live at Last
Traditional heavy metal 1990

PRAYING MANTIS demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

PRAYING MANTIS re-issues & compilations

.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Demorabilia
Traditional heavy metal 1999
.. Album Cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
The Best of Praying Mantis
Hard Rock 2004

PRAYING MANTIS singles (3)

.. Album Cover
4.50 | 1 ratings
Captured City
NWoBHM 1979
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Praying Mantis
NWoBHM 1980
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
All Day and All of the Night
NWoBHM 1980

PRAYING MANTIS movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

PRAYING MANTIS Reviews

PRAYING MANTIS Metalmorphosis

EP · 2011 · Traditional heavy metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Stephen
"Metalmorphosis" is a celebration EP to mark Praying Mantis' 30 years of career, and if you've been around in early 80s, you probably know songs like "Children of The Earth" or "Lovers To The Grave" from their debut, "Time Tells No Lies". The sole reason of this release is probably to treat long time fans with re-recorded classics for nostalgic purpose and to offer two obscure tracks from their pre-debut session, all with new singer, Mike Freeland.

"Children of The Earth" is perhaps the best of the bunch. The intro riffs are killer, the dual guitar attack with tight harmony vocals on chorus are tremendous, and the solo guitar is a total blast. Mantis plays with different tempo on this song to give a dynamic twist. "Praying Mantis" is reminiscent of Maiden early style, a good track, along with the other number, "Panic In The Streets". "Lovers To The Grave" which sounded very 70s, the vintage choir singing style and the thrilling solos are the main attraction, but the whole track is quite decent to me. "Captured City" is a wonderful uptempo tune with magnificent solos, this is as great as "Children", and since you can't find this in their debut, this makes "Metalmorphosis" worth to buy.

However, I found the production level is quite low, raw and almost like demo quality to me. The instruments are audible but Mark Freeland's vocal is a bit swallowed behind. The top notch guitar works are the selling point of this record, but if only the production is better and they throw in couple of new songs, this can be a champion, otherwise, this might be the best buy only for Mantis fans.

PRAYING MANTIS Forever in Time

Album · 1998 · Traditional heavy metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Stephen
Following the departure of Gary Barden, Praying Mantis recruited Tony O'Hora from Onslaught for the replacement and launched "Forever In Time" in 1998. Still applying the same formula which is a keyboard-driven heavy metal, Praying Mantis found his base in Japan where their music was heavily embraced and appraised.

If at times, you see a resemblance in their music with Iron Maiden, maybe that's because one of their guitarist, Dennis Stratton, was briefly in Maiden for a year in 1979, and dropped that influence on this band's songbook. By incorporating Def Leppard's harmonic vocals style and heavily dominated by keyboard sound, I think Praying Mantis' musical style is very close to early Europe, if you have heard their first two albums with heavy songs such as "In The Future To Come" or "Stormwind".

Out of 10 tracks presented here, none of them are bad but only a few that outshined the others. Another problem here is that Praying Mantis just can't write a timeless hit like what Maiden did with "Run To The Hills" or "Hallowed Be Thy Name", and that's why with many solid and great songs, it's still far from the so-called masterpiece.

My favorite picks here, to name a few, are "The Messiah", "Best Years", the ballad "Remember My Name" that reminds me of Steelheart's "She's Gone", "The Day The Sun Turned Cold", and the title track, "Forever In Time".

This album, should I say again, although lacks of punching memorable riffs and lines, is still a well-rounded record, nice and tight playing, outstanding vocal delivery, awesome harmonization, and even though the production sounds a bit outdated for a year-1998-technology, this is a great effort by the band that's worth every penny spent.

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