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Medieval Steel
The Dungeon Tapes

Company: Indy
Release: 2005
Genre: Power, traditional
Reviewer: Raising Iron

  • Great, unheralded, deeply underground 80's metal



  • After a lone, self-titled, 4 song EP released back in 1984, Tennessee's Medieval Steel broke up and left the music scene, finally to reunite around 2004 and reissue said release with some dusted off demos, a couple songs rerecorded, and a new one, "Ghost from the Battlefield". We finally get a proper full-length albums worth of songs, available for the first time on CD from this little known act.

    These guys would've been an upper tier power metal band back in the day had they kept things together; every song here is a delectable bit of old school heavy metal that tugs at the darkened hearts of spike and leather clad fans the world over. Queensryche and their first EP jump immediately to mind as a comparison (before any progressive notions existed in that band), or maybe Jag Panzer's stellar debut. This is just good, mid-paced, heavy metal that makes the listener pump fists and throw horns, and the one newly written song, "Ghost from the Battlefield" is galloping corker to be sure. Things are a bit thin in the production department, but, as most of these are 20 plus year old recordings, that's to be expected. Despite that minor shortcoming, a great mix is still present, and the vocals of Bobby Franklin are smooth and powerful, hitting the highs and controlling his mid-range timbre quite nicely. The requisite "ballad" is here in "Echoes", done well mind you, but "To Kill a King", "Warlords", and "Medieval Steel" are the real barnstormers to be reckoned with.

    The band claims there is a full-length in the works with a hopeful release date of 2009, but right now this is all there is to get from these guys. For those looking for great, unheralded, deeply underground 80's metal, this is a must for your collection.


    Maximum Metal Rating Legend - Click for Full Details
    5 Excellent - Buy it and say a prayer to the metal gods that you were tuned on to this masterpiece. A classic.
    4-4.5 Great - Almost perfect records but there's probably a clunker or a lacking somewhere to keep it from perfection. You won't feel bad about dropping some bones on these.
    3.5 Good - Most of the record is good, but there may be some filler. This is the OK range where you'd search for the record on sale or used.
    3 Average - Some good songs, some bad ones at about a half/half ratio. Could show skills but be dull overall. Redeeming qualities for indy bands are effort and passion. Majors that don't try or suck outright end up here.
    2-2.5 Fair - Worth a listen, but best obtained by collectors. There is much better metal out there.
    1-1.5 Bad - Major problems with music, lyrics, production, etc.
    0 Terrible or an otherwise waste of your life and time.

    Note: Reviews are graded from 0-5, anything higher or not showing is from our old style. Scores, however, do not reveal the important features. The written review that accompanies the ratings is the best source of information regarding the music on our site. Reviewing is opinionated, not a qualitative science, so scores are personal to the reviewer and could reflect anything from being technically brilliant to gloriously cheesy fun.

    Demos and independent releases get some slack since the bands are often spent broke supporting themselves and trying to improve. Major releases usually have big financial backing, so they may be judged by a heavier hand. All scores can be eventually adjusted up or down by comparison of subsequent releases by the same band. We attempt to keep biases out of reviews and be advocates of the consumer without the undo influence of any band, label, management, promoter, etc.

    The best way to determine how much you may like certain music is to listen to it yourself.



    ALL FULL REVIEWS FOR: MEDIEVAL STEEL
    CD
    TITLE BAND
    DOR
    REVIEWER DATE
    The Dungeon TapesMedieval Steel
    2005
    Raising Iron1/23/2009


    ALL SUMMARY REVIEWS FOR: MEDIEVAL STEEL

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