ARTIZAN – DEMON RIDER (Pure Steel Records)

Review by Officer Nice: Artizan is a band from out of the USA I know because of their first two official releases. I really liked those albums, to me it were good US Power Metal albums with a Progressive approach. I discovered the band at the Keep It True festival, at the Metal market, where Pure Steel Records were selling their goods. I remember I heard the band, at first, driving back home…

Talking again about Artizan I can say it has a nice front cover and as a big fan of US Metal this kind of Metal always work for me. This is traditional Metal, totally influenced by the Eighties Metal movement, not delivering something renewing but I like it anyway. Virgin Steele, Savatage, Jag Panzer… You understand what I am talking about? Artizan contains good musicians and the two guitarists are delivering some kind fine of riffing and nice leads too. Nice to know is the fact that the bass player of this record is a man that listens to the name of Joey Vera. Oh yes, he’s one of my favorite bass players, the man from the mighty Fates Warning is the special guest. Another idol of mine is present too for one track (the second version of the title track), mister Harry Conklin (Jag Panzer / Titan Force) and I am looking forward to his next tour with Sean Peck and Tim Owens, The Three Tremors.

Anyway, we were speaking about Artizan and I admit I like this newbie as well. The song writing might not be exclusive but is worthy, same counts for the performing. This is good played US Power Metal, foreseen with all ingredients this kind of Metal is known for. Don’t expect high vocals, Tom Braden has a lower voice. But, his timbre is very enjoyable and has some melancholic undertone. Although his vocal sound is not similar with David Taylor’s magical voice (Jacob’s Dream), Tom Braden has a for a part the same effect one me and that’s a compliment! “When darkness falls” is anyway my favorite song on this one!

Maybe this band needs a bit more aggression, a bit more balls, but the fact there’s a Progressive approach declares this issue I guess. Or is the production a bit too smooth? Jim Morris was responsible for it, he worked with Iced earth, Jag Panzer and Crimson Glory before, so I doubt it. I only received the first CD of “Demon Rider”, which also contains a few live songs. The second CD should contain instrumental songs, but I’ve never had the chance listening to them. It’s actually pretty bizarre the band released this record like this. Actually I see this newbie as some kind of EP, filled with lots of bonus tracks and a bonus CD. Strange… but the new songs are worth checking this band out.http://www/

My rating: 79/100 (Decent but best previewing)