Skeletor - HellFireRockMachineAbout 15 years ago a cartoon series called '[b]He-Man and the Masters of the Universe[/b]' totally overpowered me. I was intrigued by the flawless state in which the transformed super-warrior He-Man revelled even when he mercilessly struck down his opponents with the help of his mighty weapon, the Sword of Greyskull. There was one, however, he could not defeat that easily. His name was Keldor. Keldor was an evil magician who sought to destroy the kingdom of Eternia, of which the father of Adam (the untransformed He-Man), Ranuc, was king. As in all classic stories, good had a final showdown with evil one day. The noble king and the evil sorcerer battled with all they had in a fight in which only one could prevail. King Ranuc managed to deflect the acid Keldor wanted to throw in his face back at the evil sorcerer. Keldor was severely injured and he and his dark forces retreated after swearing bloody revenge.
With the skin burnt off his face, Skeletor was born.
Now how's this for an anecdote to start an album review...? *grin*
[i]Rockit![/i], the kick-off to [i]HellFireRockMachine[/i], is your typical Rock'n'Roll song: stimulating, energetic and true. The sound of the music changes throughout the entire album, though. While [i]Rockit![/i] is true Rock'n'Roll, [i]Trust Nobody[/i] has undeniable punkrock elements in it. The faster riffs and the 'whoohohoh' in the chorus remind strongly of the genre.
[i]Spader[/i] is a semi-ballad that doesn't quite fit with the rest of the songs on the album. Its guitar-intro has an organ-effect over the basic distortion sound, which is quite annoying at first but sounds really good when the song progresses. In the verses, [b]Matt Skeletor[/b]\'s voice goes way up where fans of [b]Ozzy Osbourne[/b] will recognize a substantial resemblance to the voice of the 'Prince of Darkness'.
The last song that caught my ear in a special way was [i]World in Black[/i], that, seriously, could've come straight off a [b]Motörhead[/b] album. It even seems like [b]Lemmy Kilminster[/b] sang the lyrics himself, that good is [b]Matt[/b]'s voice on this track.
Unfortunately for [b]Skeletor[/b], these are about the only highlights of [i]HellFireRockMachine[/i]. The rest of the songs sound quite basic and some even have riffs that can barely be held apart from those of other songs on the album. Too bad, considering the quite heavy sound [b]Skeletor[/b] uses.
One thing is for sure: [b]Skeletor[/b] is no ordinary Rock'n'Roll band. But if this [b]Skeletor[/b] is capable of ever defeating [b]He-Man[/b] remains to be seen. Maybe in another episode?
Matt Skeletor: vocals, guitar
Andy 'Duke' Wenk: guitar
Thorben Gust: bass
Jan 'Evil' Polter: drums
2. Losin' My Mind
3. Trust Nobody
5. World In Black
6. To Be A Star
7. Bitch Keeps on Rockin'
8. Gun In Your Hand
9. Rock'n'Roll Man
11. Rat Race