Martin Davey
MMA Special Collaborator · Error & Omissions Team
Registered more than 2 years ago · Last visit 1 day ago

Favorite Metal Artists

All Reviews/Ratings

208 reviews/ratings
DREAM THEATER - Images and Words Progressive Metal | review permalink
DREAM THEATER - Awake Progressive Metal | review permalink
DREAM THEATER - Train of Thought Progressive Metal | review permalink
THE BLACK MAGES - The Black Mages: Battle Music of Final Fantasy Progressive Metal | review permalink
DREAM THEATER - Metropolis, Part 2: Scenes From a Memory Progressive Metal | review permalink
DREAM THEATER - Six Degrees of Inner Turbulence Progressive Metal | review permalink
STUCK MOJO - Declaration of a Headhunter Alternative Metal | review permalink
ANDROMEDA - Extension of the Wish Progressive Metal | review permalink
METALLICA - ...And Justice for All Thrash Metal | review permalink
SYMPHONY X - Twilight In Olympus Progressive Metal | review permalink
FATES WARNING - A Pleasant Shade Of Gray Progressive Metal | review permalink
RAMMSTEIN - Mutter Industrial Metal | review permalink
SAVATAGE - The Wake Of Magellan Progressive Metal | review permalink
SAVATAGE - Poets And Madmen Progressive Metal | review permalink
MEGADETH - Risk Hard Rock | review permalink
METALLICA - Metallica Traditional heavy metal | review permalink
CONSORTIUM PROJECT - Consortium Project Progressive Metal | review permalink
SONATA ARCTICA - Ecliptica Power Metal | review permalink
KISS - Destroyer Hard Rock | review permalink
H-BLOCKX - Time to Move Alternative Metal | review permalink

See all reviews/ratings

Metal Genre Nb. Rated Avg. rating
1 Progressive Metal 83 3.58
2 Traditional heavy metal 25 3.08
3 Thrash Metal 17 2.94
4 Power Metal 15 2.93
5 Alternative Metal 13 3.77
6 Hard Rock 9 3.00
7 US Power Metal 8 2.88
8 NWoBHM 5 3.00
9 Industrial Metal 5 3.60
10 Non-Metal 5 3.00
11 Gothic Metal 4 2.75
12 Groove Metal 3 2.67
13 Funk Metal 3 2.67
14 Nu Metal 3 2.67
15 Metal Related 3 2.33
16 Speed Metal 3 2.00
17 Symphonic Metal 3 3.67
18 Proto-Metal 1 2.00

Latest Albums Reviews


Album · 1974 · Hard Rock
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It's crazy to believe that this uninspiring release would spawn one of the most iconic and legendary rock bands in history. Though, what Kiss would lack in memorable hits they certainly made up for in marketability. Admittedly, I've always had a soft spot for the band. In fact, it was their 'Destroyer' album that changed the life of 12 year-old me back in 1999 when it introduced me to rock music. So going back to the bands early albums has sadly failed to live up to expectations.

Not that there really were any expectations to begin with, mind you. Kiss have always had a penchant for dumb, womanizing, sex, drugs and rock 'n' roll anthems, but their biggest trait has always been their image and their ability to sell products. Especially when their early albums were as lacklustre as this one.

Featuring ten tracks that top in at 35 minutes, 'Kiss' is a very raw release that is very straight forward and to the point. Songs about women, partying, drinking and more partying is the name of the game, but none of these songs are as noteworthy as the groups later material.

If I had to be generous, 'Strutter', 'Cold Gin' and 'Let Me Know' are alright, but pale in comparison to albums like 'Destroyer', 'Love Gun' and 'Creatures of the Night', and considering a lot of the other rock bands that were around in 1974, it's not hard to imagine where this band would be right now if not for their iconic face paint and stage shows.

Still, it's Kiss. How can you be mad at them?

ANTHRAX Fistful Of Metal

Album · 1984 · Speed Metal
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I like Anthrax. I really do. In fact, I feel somewhat bad for them, as they've always seemed like the ginger stepchild of what's known as the Big Four of thrash metal (including Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer), but like so many early thrash bands, their debut album is fairly unremarkable, with a lack of finesse being evident in their naive and unpolished song writing.

And I know, this is thrash metal, right? What am I expecting? But like all their contemporaries, their later material shows a huge maturity and growth which their earliest releases lack. Such is the case with Anthrax's debut, 'Fistful of Metal'. Although the album starts off well, it quickly loses whatever charm is has as repetition and a lack of any real creativity sinks in.

While guitarists Scott Ian and Dan Spitz have an immediate chemistry, and drummer Charlie Benante proves himself as one of metals most underrated stickmen, it's vocalist Neil Turbin who's performance fails the band. I find his vocals grating, mostly resorting to high pitched wailing that shows a good range, but something about it just annoys the hell out of me.

Still, songs like 'Deathrider', 'Metal Thrashing Mad' and a cover of Alice Cooper's 'I'm Eighteen' salvage this record, and makes it my second favourite of the Big Four's debut albums (Metallica's 'Kill 'Em All' being the best of the bunch). But like so many bands from that era, their best material is yet to come, and earlier releases such as this will soon be left in the shadows.

SLAYER Show No Mercy

Album · 1983 · Thrash Metal
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There was a time in my early teens when I was really into Slayer. I'd just gotten into rock and metal via Kiss, Metallica and Megadeth, and was craving anything heavy, and nothing was heavier to 15 year-old me than Slayer!

But that was in 2002, and while I quickly outgrew my foray into thrash metal, I remained loyal to a lot of the bands. Of what is known as the "big four", Metallica, Megadeth and Anthrax stayed with me as my musical tastes evolved and ventured to pastures new. But there was one band that got left behind very easily, and it's time to become reacquainted with them; Slayer,

Released in 1983, 'Show No Mercy' is Slayer's debut album, and much like all the other early thrash releases, it's raw and aggressive, but very unpolished and lacking anything truly memorable other than it's penchant for playing fast. There's not really much going on save for a song or two, with the riffs being fairly bland, typical 80's thrash riffs and Tom Araya's vocals not really suiting the music either. A weird combination of shouting and talking that just sits there but doesn't really do anything for me.

The musicianship is fine. Nothing to celebrate or shout about, but the early makings of one of metal's most beloved bands is certainly there. Guitarists Kerry King and Jeff Hanneman are certainly competent at keeping up with each other and all the other thrash metal bands of the day, and drummer Dave Lombardo is able to keep the tempo up throughout.

Admittedly, there is one song I like, and that's 'Tormentor'. It has a cool NWOBHM vibe to it, with some very nice riffs that are hindered by Araya's lacklustre vocal delivery. There's worse debuts out there, but I'm not a fan of 'Show No Mercy', and hearing it now, it makes me wonder how Slayer were ever considered a part of the big four to begin with.

ICED EARTH The Dark Saga

Album · 1996 · US Power Metal
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Iced Earth's fourth release, 'The Dark Saga', is a concept album based upon the story of comic book character Spawn. It's a bit of an odd release in the bands discography, as they stripped down their sound a quite a bit, and as a whole nothing here reaches the intensity, aggression or complexity of anything we'd heard before.

I'm probably one of the very few who didn't like previous release 'Burnt Offerings', which is held in high regard by fans, and while 'Dark Saga' is somewhat a step back in the right direction, it still fails to truly connect with me. I feel like the Spawn storyline is also a detriment to the music. As a huge fan of the character, it seems like halfway through the album the lyrics and music don't seem to relate to the source material anymore. Or perhaps I'm just struggling to pay attention.

Musically, it's standard power metal, but the band have slowed down a lot, with only a couple of songs reaching the same speed as past compositions, but there's still that unmistakeable Iced Earth sound to it. Mostly in part thanks to vocalist Matt Barlow, who, with this release, is the first singer to make it to their second album with the band. With that said, his vocals are fairly disappointing here. I'm not sure if it's the hackneyed songwriting or the uninspiring lyrics, but his delivery just doesn't seem to work.

Even the guitar solos on this album are unremarkable. Most of them just being slow, melodic lead breaks with the occasional harmony. I'm all for solos suiting the songs and not playing speed for speed's sake, but there's just nothing truly memorable happening here.

Complaints aside, there are a handful of moments that save this release from being a complete abomination. The title track, as well as 'I Died For You', 'The Hunter' and 'The Last Laugh' are all decent tracks. But none of them hold up well compared to Iced Earth's other (burnt) offerings, and while it's certainly not the worst album I own, it's probably not one I intend to go back to very often. If ever.


Album · 2005 · Progressive Metal
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Released four years after their debut, 'Section X' gives us a second dark and twisted glimpse into the mindscape of Danish prog metal group, Beyond Twilight. With another concept album based around themes of cloning, manipulation and perversion, it's a pretty bleak story, but it makes for some great music!

Beyond Twilight have a fairly unique and distinctive sound, with lots of dark passages that really conjure up images of perverted horror. Their sound is very gothic and gloomy, with powerful, multi-layered vocals and interplay between numerous guitars and keyboards. It's a very atmospheric release, which is surprisingly short for a concept album (at 45 minutes), but will still require a number of listens to really familiarize yourself with the music.

But that's nothing new to us prog fans, right?

Although there are very slight moments where the music tends to drag and feels self-indulgent, overall the album flows diligently. Highlights include 'The Path to Darkness', 'Section X', 'Shadow Self', and what is probably one of the bands finest pieces, 'Ecstasy Arise'. These songs alone make this album a notable addition to any prog metal fans collection, and help define Beyond Twilight as a truly underrated band that are worthy of your time.

Latest Forum Topic Posts

  • Posted 2 months ago in Powder (nu metal band)
    Underrated band, underrated subgenre. Let's be having them, shall we? (I'm happy to add them and fill in details, so long as it's alright to do so). martindavey872017-11-01 13:58:22
  • Posted 3 months ago in Do i have a problem?
    I rarely buy CD's brand new as it's too costly. I did pick up Fozzy's new album today though, which came out yesterday. I think it may be the only 2017 album I bought this year, and at £10, was the most expensive CD I bought. 
  • Posted 3 months ago in Do i have a problem?
    Bought seven CD's today. Fucks sake. 


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