Damien - Stop This War (1989)
Year : 1989
Style : Heavy Metal , Power Metal
Country : United States
Audio : 320 kbps + all scans + Video
Size : 159 mb
No exact date has ever been pinpointed, but some time during the close of the 1970's and the beginning of the 1980's a powerful metal group formed in Toledo, Ohio - they called themselves DAMIEN. Influenced by some of the greatest bands of their day, Judas Priest, Black Sabbath, UFO, Scorpions.Their first recording, 1987’s “Every Dog Has Its Day,” was accepted by rock fans and the band recorded videos for it and its follow-up, two years later, 1989’s “Stop This War.” “Stop This War” is an impressive collection of tracks with thoughtful, aggressive lyrics, and unbelievable metal elements from vocals to drums. All of this screams the question, “Why weren’t they bigger?”.Fans hear about the workings of the music industry in various ways from the bands they love and music historians. One thing that Damien didn’t have was a short, snappy song that would have been considered radio-friendly. Thirty years later, this seems ridiculous, but such was important in the 1980s. All of the tracks on “Stop This War” are between two and five minutes long. It seems as if more airplay would not have been out of the question.Another reason for Damien’s near-obscurity might have been their popularity at the end of the decade. In retrospect, by 1987, there were only a few years left of the metal decade. Bands who had been around for years were trying new things, and while Damien’s work was good, maybe it wasn’t as competitive as some industry professionals might have expected. It is difficult to tell.So, maybe timing was Damien’s issue. But people remain excited about the band’s sound, so it does not seem as if the recorded product was the issue. Online comments about the band’s music are overwhelmingly positive, even in 2019. Even though Damien technically broke up in the 1990s, they reformed in the early years of the 21st century and have reportedly played shows as recently as the summer of 2018. The band also appears to be a four-piece group now.The sound of Damien’s “Stop This War” Damien is possibly best enjoyed on vinyl. At any rate, the songs have an urgency that is sometimes lacking in bands for whom traditional success has come easier.The overall soundscape will remind some listeners of the late 1980s Christian metal bands that were popular at the time. Bloodgood, for example. The band manages to craft a big sound and fast rhythms. The vocals never scream at a stratospheric level, but a lower-pitched singing that isn’t operatic is used to bring songs about war and women who might be witches to life.Thundering- -that is a word that is best used to describe the sound of Damien. Songs like “Rising Dawn” offer listeners a sparse guitar and voice only melody before kicking into the unexpected rhythms and general power that govern the instrumentation and vocals. For this song and a few others, Damien inspires comparisons to Iron Maiden.For pure power and aggression, especially in the form of Randy “Wolf” Mickelson’s vocals, “Matilda” is a must-listen. The lyrics are unexpected, too. From the structure of each line, to the placement and choice of each word, the song sounds like a metal masterpiece, and as if it should have been in a horror movie soundtrack.Perhaps Damien will tour again this coming summer. Even if the band that performs is not constituted of all original members, more than likely they will still pull off the sound and style that drew people to Damien in the first place.
Ohio based band Damien kind of remind me of Malice from Oregan.In that both were mid/late 80's bands that sounded quite a bit like Judas Priest. Malice sound a little more like Priest in the vocal department and Damien sound a little more like them in the music department. Ultimately I prefer Damien to Malice due to more hooks and less repitition. This is their sophomore effort and it's a total of ten tracks. It's certainly not overly original as it has a big dose of Judas Priest and lesser splashes of maybe Accept and Armored Saint. If you are going to copy someone then it should at least be someone good and they have the right influences then. Yet they do manage to keep it lively and heavy with some strong rhythms constantly going. I guess this album would be refered to as "classic metal" now although back then it just would have been called "metal" or maybe even "power metal" as that phrase was just coming into use and hadn't yet just been assigned to mainly European bands. I had a sampler cassette in 1989 that included the track "Rising dawn" from this album and it drew me in. I bought the album based on that one track and wasn't disappointed. There are tracks like "Matilda" and "Corpse Grinder" where the guys ran short on ideas where the lyrics were concerned, but largely it's steady and fairly memorable material. I could easily imagine these guys being a good live act as their songs are strong and roll along well.Another minor complaint might be that if someone played this for me without telling me what year it was made then I might guess about 85 or 86, but you can see up top it came out in 89. That means they were maybe a little behind when this was released and that may have kept them from getting very far. Still I have listened to it three times in the two days since I bought my new copy on cd so that should say something.
Randy "Wolf" Mikelson - Vocals - See also: Fetish Doll, ex-Wolf Gang
Kevin "Killer" Kekes - Bass - See also: ex-Bones Garage, ex-Chastain, ex-Vainglory
Johnny "Evil" Cappeletty - Drums
Chuck Stohl - Guitars - See also: Stohl-N
Fritz Adamshick - Guitars, Vocals
01. Stop This War 04:56
02. Break Out 03:37
03. Rising Dawn 05:25
04. Matilda 04:05
05. 30 St. Clair 02:52 instrumental
06. Stormwind 04:56
07. Warlord 03:02
08. Always in Lust 04:37
09. The Priests Are Coming 04:39
10. Corpse Grinder 03:07
+ Video "Break Out" (Official Video)
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hudební novinky 1989 / music news 1989
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