Force Of Evil - “Evil Comes….Alive!” Escapi Music 2004 Reviewed by: Ken Pierce
1. The Calling 2. Demonized 3. Fountain Of Grace 4. Mindbreaker 5. Eye Of The Storm 6. Curse Of The Pharoahs 7. Eternity 8. Hell On Earth 9. Samhain 10. Death Comes Crawling 11. Evil
Late last year the core founders of the band Mercyful Fate (Hank Shermann and Michael Denner) started a new Heavy Metal band called “The Force Of Evil”. This CD has been already reviewed to high marks on the site and is being very well received in the metal world. How could it not, since it is essentially all members of Fate plus Hal Patino of King Diamond and newcomer Martin Steene of Ironfire.
Filmed in Stockholm in November 2003 one can see the band in its live infancy. I say this as it is filmed during the bands second performance ever, and one cannot tell that this is the case. The tunes are good and heavy and the production of the DVD is solid, clear, and not one instrument over powers any of the others. I especially liked how Steene sounds live, one is always concerned that the vocalist on the CD does not sound the same live. I also like his voice as it suits the material very well. However, I was not 100% crazy about the way he sings the Mercyful Fate material but I think this is because I am too used to the way King Diamond's voice sounds on these numbers.
Bassist Hal Patino holds the bottom together while Drummer Bjarne Holm sitting at a very small drumkit plays the fills as if he were on a larger set. This was probably done in the interest of keeping it simple to ensure quality of the recording. Then there is Hank Shermann and Denner. Twin virtuousos playing with the same harmony and style that their fans have loved for years. I have often thought that Shermann was overlooked when it came to Metal Guitar God polls. Hopefully, this will change some of that.
If you already own the self-titled CD, it will interest you to know that the entire CD is showcased here with the exception of “Under The Blade” (no, not the one by Twisted Sister). The DVD also comes with a full color booklet with a lot of pictures and some liner notes. I did enjoy this DVD, as its nice to see a quality piece come out to accompany a new band. My fave tracks on this would have to be “The Calling”, “Mindbreaker”, “Hell On Earth” and “Evil”. I recommend this to any fans of Fate and Diamond material as well as those who are just looking to keep heavy music in the limelight and want to take a chance on a new band put together by the creators of some of the most influencial heavy metal of our time.
Bonus Features: “Evil” and “Misery Man” filmed in Cleveland Metal Fest in 2003. It seems to be an amateur shot of these tunes. As result, the sound quality is better than the overall video on these numbers. Still, it is a plus to have footage from the bands very first venture to stage. Two interviews (which I found very interesting on the bands take on this new project). A very detailed biography as well as some stuff from the studio during the recording process of the CD.
Force Of Evil Website: www.forceofevil.net
--Ken Pierce 06.22.04
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