Year : 1997
Style : Heavy Metal , Power Metal
Country : United States
Audio : 320 kbps + all scans
Size : 155 mb
Traditional/Power Metal in the vein of Judas Priest, Iron Maiden & best in genre.ASKA; What more can we possibly say regarding this perennial favorite "underground" band that hasn't been touted already from rooftops across the electrified globe?For the uninitiated: ASKA is born during the nascent alternative/grunge movement of the early 90's and eschews the popular fad in favor of playing metal music…their way. From the first release to their fifth, the band embarks on a variety of world tours that would be the envy of better established acts and nets them notoriety,credibility,independent record company contracts, financial gain, and 40 countries notched on their belts to date and counting. Impossibly the band's songs are added to HARD RADIO playlists - without benefit of label support- and the intrepid muses follow blow-for-blow with what can only be described as an unheralded classic of true-metal majesty; "Avenger". Critics and fans of the genre raise their fists in the air and hail. With the release of their "Absolute Power" album, the band proves that what they'd put forth on "Avenger" was no fluke and take things a step further. In fact, "Absolute Power" is so well received within the metal community that legendary metal bands, Omen, Banshee and Cloven Hoof offer singer/guitarist George Call a position as their lead vocalist. Metal Gods and fans, both past and present, find worthy brothers-in-arms in ASKA. Their ways have not been forgotten but are indeed carried on with pride and finesse by this Dallas based construct of metal passion and fury. At this writing, ASKA readies their forthcoming sixth album, "Fire Eater", for release in 2013. Hail them without question as they fight their way to the great hall of champions and take their rightful place among the new defenders of the faith.
Rising from the ashes of war, there is no question that the immortal avengers ASKA are standing strong and breaking free, against the odds. I first heard these absolute power Metal Texans on an IRON MAIDEN Tribute called “Children Of The Damned”. The Dallas vigilantes were covering “Flight Of Icarus”. This was a double disc which also featured original material by the various bands. ASKA included the song “The Stalker” which instantly impressed me.I did not experience their mettle tested talent again until I read a review of the re-issue of “Avenger” on Steelheart Records. I instantly set out to purchase this album, and once I did, I was hooked. I totally dug their follow-up “Absolute Power” too. Once I witnessed them on “Warriors Of Metal II & III”, and I was given the wonderful opportunity to get to know George Call and his blood brothers, I became a major supporter of the band. In fact, they even gave me a copy of their ultra-rare, self-titled debut on CD. How cool is that!I so yearn for their new album to be delivered, as it has already been six long stiff years. How long must we pine, one can only dream. When I interviewed Call a few years ago, he too was excited about its forthcoming release. Since then he has been a vocalist for the bands of BANSHEE and OMEN, as well as CLOVEN HOOF. God willing, at least Pure Steel has heeded the message and chosen to re-issue some of their back catalogue on vinyl, and other formats.This brings us to this album. When I first secured a copy of the original, I paid a heavy price, but I was expecting more of the brilliance that is ever present on their last two masterpieces. Sadly, this third album is a bit more varied and totally uneven. If you are not familiar with them, please do not let this be your springboard! That would be a major mistake!My digital promo re-issue sounds better than the original, but the track listing is mixed up for some odd reason. Granted there are some well-played, stand-out tracks present like the fan favorite “Blood Of The Wolf”. When they performed this hard biting tooth and nail slice of death at “WOM III” after a ragin' storm, my dog Maggie and another Metal dog called Kai began to howl incessantly, after Call's coaxing. Check it out at YouTube!The George Call penned classic “Killashandra” is another killer anthem. Unfortunately, there are some sleazier tracks which are more “Hair Metal” based, and even if thin tongue is in cheek, tracks like the lustful “Little Sister” are totally out of place. Although, I do enjoy the use of the Spanish to emphasize that these zoned out weary poets do not know much about love.The ANNIHILATOResque invasion of the surreal, killer “Captain Crunch” has a bit of humor and heaviness to it, and should not be confused with the silly song by the same name which M.O.D. wrote. No need to milk this mode any further, as the closing track “The Dream” has it AOR appeal, but with its conclusion, there is a two minute brief pause before we are mistreated to an annoying and inebriated drunken diatribe of the horny boys night out, hoping to score. Did they accidentally leave the recorder on, or is this crass and tasteless portrayal of the fucked-up misfits intentional? If this foul verbal conflagration happened in the studio, then the totally wasted frat boy prattle and incoherent psychobabble should have been omitted from the final release. I had so hoped the re-issue would have removed this nonsense and provided a bonus track of some sort, or some live material. It is this test of leprosy, which tightens the tourniquet of intolerance, and has me not praising this album as highly. At least a caustic cut like “Question” sets the historical precedent for future tracks like “Imperial Rome” or “Legion”. In fact even if the bad boys are spreading the disease like classic Y&T or APRIL WINE, then “Leprosy” only mildly infects. However, it does prepare us for what has become one of my favourite songs by ASKA, namely “Vowbreaker”.George is an excellent vocalist and musician, and a real stand-up guy. I do not view him as being a clown of thorns with too many vices. Damn if he does not seem to have issues with women though; unless of course, the songs are purely fiction, as would appear to be the case with “Liquid Courage”. This POISONesque poseur song is totally unnecessary, and not to be confused with what VIO-LENCE created. Honestly, I do not consider him or any other member to be a womanizer or a stalker. Maybe they are imitating ANVIL. I never did meet any other member from this line-up save George and Keith. Did they feel these types of weaker songs were necessary to sell records? Clearly not! I wonder if the drummer Damon is George's brother? The same line-up appears in tact on the first three releases.As far as I am concerned, ASKA are one of my favorite U.S. Traditional Metal acts, and I sincerely suggest getting to know them, now. Here is hoping when these Metal warriors return with new material that it is well worth the wait!
George Call - Vocals, Guitars - See also: Banshee, Emerald, Violent Storm, ex-Omen
Damon Call - Drums
Darren Knapp - Guitars (lead)
Keith Knight - Bass, Vocals (backing) - See also: Warrion
01. The Stalker 04:22
02. Leprosy 04:01
03. The Question 05:05
04. Little Sister 03:53
05. Blood of the Wolf 05:44
06. Killashandra 04:54
07. Captain Crunch 03:37
08. Liquid Courage 04:04
09. Nightmare 00:51
10. The Dream 15:44
Please my link you can´t spread further and don´t upload to other hostings!!!
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