By Bob Nalbandian

This third installment of SHOCKWAVES CD Reviews is basically the Best of the Rest of Y2K, as it includes brand new releases, as well as a few CDs that were released early last year. Featured in this segment are reviews of the latest from: LIZZY BORDEN, OVERKILL, ANNIHILATOR, MONTROSE, THE MUSHROOM RIVER BAND, LOWRIDER, ABDULLAH, THE MYSTICK KREWE OF CLEARLIGHT, THE ATOMIC BITCHWAX, LABYRINTH, MASQUERADE, MEMEROY GARDEN, RHAPSODY, ELEGY, SYMPHONY X, ROSE TATTOO, NONPOINT, VOODOO HILL, THE SIGN, GLENN HUGHES, MOTORHEAD (Compilations), RAVEN (Reissues), IRON MAIDEN, and HALFORD.

Deal With The Devil
Metal Blade

The psychotic axe-man is back with a new album and a (somewhat) new lineup. The band, or the "demons" (as Lizzy calls them) include Joey Scott on drums, Alex Nelson on guitar, Louis Cyphere (that's really Lizzy, not actually the devil) on guitar, and other guest guitarists. The bass duties on the CD are split between Marten Andersson, Joey Vera (Armored Saint/Fate's Warning), and Michael Davis. And, of course, Lizzy handles the vocal department, quite brilliantly I might add. Sounding like a cross between Geoff Tate and Bruce Dickinson, Lizzy sounds better than ever before!

Unlike most metal reunions these days, in which the members only reform in hopes of cashing in while releasing total, uninspried shit, Lizzy and the boys obviously took their reformation seriously, and it certainly shows. This album is Lizzy Borden at their best. Great musicianship, excellent songs, and strong production (considering the majority of the CD was recorded on pro-tools) courtesy of Elliot Solomon, who produced, engineered, mixed, and played keys on the disc. The opening track, "There Will Be Blood Tonight," totally kicks buttocks...classy, melodic, and powerful! This is what the music industry sorely lacks in this day and age. "Hell Is For Heroes" continues in a similar fashion, very classy, Euro-style metal sounding a bit like the Scorps in their heyday. The title track follows, a catchy, somewhat poppy, tune, but still very cool sounding. "Zanzibar" is my favorite track, showing traces of early Rainbow and MSG, with an incredible Sitar intro from Alex Nelson, giving the song classic middle-eastern overtones.

"Loving You Is Murder" is a great Queensryche-ish tune featuring incredible vocal harmonies from Lizzy. "We Only Come Out At Night" is a beat-heavy metal tune with a catchy, demonic chorus. Other highlights include "The World Is Mine," and a commendable version of the Coops "Generation Landslide."

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