Chastain - Ruler Of The Wasteland review


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Band: Chastain
Album: Ruler Of The Wasteland
Release date: 1986

01. Ruler Of The Wasteland
02. One Day To Live
03. The King Has The Power
04. Fighting To Stay Alive
05. Angel Of Mercy
06. There Will Be Justice
07. The Battle Of Nevermore
08. Living In A Dreamworld
09. Children Of Eden

American metallers Chastain are one of the best kept secrets in metal; those who have discovered them know what classics they have to offer, while those who are blissfully unaware miss out big time. Ruler Of The Wasteland is the second outing by the band and one that does not look back as it blasts out the gate and leaves you in its dust.

Led by namesake guitarist David Chastain, Chastain are a band who contain more talent than many bands in the genre. With Leather Leone behind the microphone, the band have one of the most underrated female vocalists in metal on their side as they power through nine solid tracks of heavy metal.

Like a siren's call, "Fighting To Stay Alive" entices you with its charm and a chorus that will stick with you like super glue, Leone's soaring vocals will keep you coming back again and again; easily the best song on the album. "There Will Be Justice" starts off with an acoustic refrain before launching into a knock down drag out metal attack. "Angel Of Mercy" features excellent guitar work that will wrap its way around your skull and hold your attention in place whether you want it to or not.

The band are no slouches behind their instruments, Chastain knows his way around a fret board and you sit back in amazement at some of the noises he wrings out of his six string. Leone makes her case for being one of the best female vocalists in the genre, while Mary is an able and willing participant in this album from behind the skins. Skimmerhorn is the only member who doesn't get to show off his skills as he gets one hell of a raw deal and is hidden behind the metric ton of effects this album is drenched in.

The production will grow on you after repeated listens, but it does take getting used to. The amount of reverb and echo this album is drowned in would make David Dunn shudder. If you are willing to fall down into the well that the album is seemingly playing from, then you will be able to fully enjoy the songs behind the effects. As mentioned previously, Skimmerhorn's bass is practically inaudible for much of the album's duration and only gets brief moments to stand out and shine; he is the main casualty of the album's production.

Ruler Of The Wasteland is a must for any fans of heavy metal in the vein of Armored Saint or Metal Church who want another band to add to the mix. Aside from production issues, there is nothing else that needs changing on Ruler Of The Wasteland; the songs are tight, varied yet sit well next to each other and the musicianship is top notch. Nine well-crafted songs that serve to kick ass and take names afterwards is more than you can ask for most bands.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 8
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 8
Production: 6

Written by omne metallum | 18.05.2020


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

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