Rating:
5.8
Halford - Crucible
21 June 2002


01. Park Manor
02. Crucible
03. One Will
04. Betrayal
05. Handing Out Bullets
06. Hearts Of Darkness
07. Crystal
08. Heretic
09. Golgotha
10. Wrath Of God
11. Weaving Sorrow
12. Sun
13. Trail Of Tears
14. She [Limited edition bonus]
15. Fugitive [Limited edition bonus]
16. Rock The World Forever [Japanese bonus]
17. In The Morning [Japanese bonus]


Let me throw down the facts on the table at the very beginning of this review. This album is mainly bullshit. It has some great moments, which are really great actually, but 70% of it is crap.

Anyway, despite having already said the most essential I'll dig a bit more into the details. At its core this is mainly a Heavy Metal album, yet…it's kind of strange and quite hard to describe. I think you'll have to listen for yourself if you want to know for sure. Here's my try at explaining what this album is exactly. Next to Heavy Metal which this album mainly is, there are also some traces of more "modern" genres. I might even go so far as to say it sometimes has a Melodic Death Metal sound to it. I mean, seriously, try listening to "Hearts Of Darkness" and telling me that the beginning doesn't sound almost exactly like Amon Amarth! Furthermore, there are a few minor metalcorish elements, some Thrash Metal and maybe even some tiny traces of grunge. You decide if this is something good or bad, for me personally, it isn't.

The guitars are tuned very low for the riffs and leads; there are a lot of typical Heavy Metal solos however. But well, they're just that, typical. Nothing original, nothing we haven't heard yet, just some really "standard" solos, and a lot of them. In most songs we'll find one or two actually. The bass guitar is very prominent, sometimes even too much so. It's not bad actually, but after a while it just gets a bit annoying. The vocals are extremely rich in variation. I think it wouldn't be an overstatement if I said that Rob sings in every possible way he can on this album. At times it's very good, at others a bit less, but oh well. That's to be expected with so much variation of course. The drumming, I must admit, is superb! It's really great. It's actually what saves this CD for me. There's some very great use of percussion, sparingly though, and overall a lot of variation. Here the drummer is clearly the star of the album.

Some songs sound like they could very well have been Judas Priest songs, but others, especially Heretic, remind greatly of Pantera. There are also a number of songs which have their very bad and very good parts. Golgotha for example starts out like a piece of shit. Yet after two minutes it turns into an awesome song! There are also both some very slow and tranquil parts and some quite aggressive parts. I must say that I clearly prefer the aggressive parts though.

The real downturn of this album though, I think, is the production. I don't know, maybe the only reason I don't like the distorted guitars is that there is some statics. Maybe I would like the bass sound a lot if the production hadn't watered it down so much…I don't know for sure, but I do know that the person doing it screwed up…a lot.

So, summing up-time. Lots of filler parts, some good parts. Many 'modern' elements, yet also some choruses sounding exactly like Judas Priest. Great drumming and awful production. That's about it I guess.

Maybe you'll like this album anyway, but probably only for the few good parts if you're a die-hard fan or you'll like most of it if you're more into metalcore and Nu Metal and maybe some sludgy Thrash stuff. As an old school Heavy Metal fan though? Nah! Avoid this thing at all costs.

Top songs: Crucible and Crystal and the second half of Golgotha.

Performance: 8
Songwriting: 6
Originality: 5
Production: 4


Band profile: Halford
Album: Crucible


 


written by Bas | 29.12.2006


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

Staff review by
Pierre Tombale

Rating:
6.6
Taking Heavy Metal into new extremes Halford shows up with his 2002 album 'Crucible' the successor to the major successful Resurrection. With elements of nu-metal, a nightmare of distorted sounds, furious drumming parts and from time to time antihormonic singing or his famous high-pitched screams, Halford takes us right before the gates of hell and beyond. This album is very far away from what we heard on 'Resurrection', yet you can hear some muscial type of allusions to Pantera maybe Slayer and Korn, or maybe nothing of those and let's say it's just another inventive or innovative type of heavy metal. Is it still heavy metal, or may it already be something else?

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published 15.02.2004 | Comments (3)



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