Distant Thunder CD (1996)

Artist: Helstar

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Product Overview

Specifications

Label Metal Blade
SKU 60029402
UPC 039841420722
UPC 14 00039841420722
Format CD
Release Date 11/12/1996
Links
Author Helstar
Associated Artist/Work Karaoke
Technical Info
CatalogID 73403
Lable Name Metal Blade
Released 11/26/1996
Original Release 1988
Number of Discs 1
SPARE Code DDD
Mono/Stereo Stereo
Studio/Live Studio
UPC 00039841420722
Album Notes and Credits
Lone Star State metal-heads Helstar attempted to put the troubles that had almost derailed their career behind them by relocating from Houston to Los Angeles in 1987 and promptly signing a contract with Metal Blade Records for the release of their third album, A Distant Thunder, the following year. And although fans will never agree on which of the band's albums they like best, that very indecision serves as a testament to Helstar's general high standards, which most certainly carried over into this latest collection of songs. For one thing, the group's initial speed metal hallmarks had been properly updated to incorporate thrash metal's somewhat more serrated guitar sound -- see opening powerhouse "The King Is Dead," "Bitter End," "Scorcher," etc. -- and with the similarly frantic but more melodic style named power metal simultaneously rising to prominence in Europe, frontman James Rivera's potent histrionics actually felt relatively modern, rather than dating the band to the early `80s. Then again, listeners keen to indulge in some serious epic metal from that older time frame could do a lot worse than pumping their fists in unison to the Iron Maiden homage "Abandon Ship" or bowing down to the unequivocal majesty of "Winds of War" (laced with soft/hard altercations, synthesizers, piano parts, thunderous sound effects, you name it!). Finally, since even the less fluid and distinctive offerings ("Tyrannicide," "Genius of Insanity") were generally rescued by the ever-tasteful shredding of guitarists Larry Barragan and Andre Corbin, it's no wonder that A Distant Thunder helped Helstar reestablish their reputation for delivering classic American metal at its most accomplished and criminally overlooked. ~ Eduardo Rivadavia

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