Sunday, March 29, 2009

Shadow's Mignon
Midnight Sky Masquerade

Whether pastiche or paltry tribute this reconstruction of metal’s early-mid eighties glory years pillages, ransacks but largely elevates rather than desecrates the spangtastically tongue in cheek ridiculousness of the whole charade shebang and sheltering from storms in skyclad nooks and crannies. Exceeding the current glut of self-conscious stances at reimagining the past like an unfunny Flight of the Conchords sketch this is full of the fist ‘pon table proclamations and harbinging guitars as heralds clank armour, drink heavily and spew anthems such as A Dragon Shall Come, A Slave To Metal (about being, erm, brothers of the fist…), Kingdom Of The Battle Gods and Spirit Of The Elves. Much of it will make you laugh aloud, and even wince at the purposefully painful Marillion-style balladry of Goodnight Boston - check the song titles and write your own references on your (chain-mail and studded with patches and tippex-ed band names) anorak but you’ll find all manner of biker chug that Quiet Riot, Motley Crue, W.A.S.P. etc sawed off Rose Tattoo’s tough stems, the twin guitar pincers of Maiden and Lizzy are effectively appropriated into the general genial madness that launched Jake E. Lee-era Ozzy into Bark At The Moon. So, intro’s with tom-toms like Satan’s coxswain has taken the hotseat while the guitars gallivant over the deck, pushing the existing crew into seven seas of rye and increasingly risky visits to outfitting businesses? – check! Drop-outs with cowbells for ‘audience participation’? – cheeeeck! I bet they have a really vast roadie too! Check shirts? NevEERRRRR! More than an arch, knowing, parodic, patronising take on the genre, the surge of pure enjoyment filters from it, however much it’s intellectualised and is largely a gargantuan piss-take of Dio and Manowar. As mainman Henny Paul readily admits, die-hard metallers aren’t going to like the fact that it generally is a pile of bullshit (perhaps especially not by some jumped up prog-tech prissy smart-arse) yet it’s fun, as is this stupidly-titled project is – though nowhere near as good as last year’s Dead Child album - besides the cringing ballads so if you scowl at it then may a pestilence of pederastic priests beat a path to your door and pour out of, or into, your every crevice and blow your…house down. Raise your fist and yell (at least) indeed. Stu Gibson

1 comment:

One for the Vine said...

This release is from ProgRock Records, not Nightmare

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