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Rage - Soundchaser - 2003 - SPV reviewed by: EC

Track Listing

1. Orgy Of Destruction
2. War Of Worlds
3. Great Old Ones
4. Soundchaser
5. Defenders Of The Ancient Life
6. Secrets In A Weird World
7. Flesh And Blood
8. Human Metal
9. See You In Heaven Or Hell
10. Wake The Nightmares - (featuring Andi Deris)
11. Death Is On It's Way
12. French Bouree - (bonus track)
One of the greatest German metal bands of our time has released another power metal masterpiece.

Rage has been dominating my speakers for years. In fact Rage would probably be the biggest reason that I love German metal so much (Grave Digger, Running Wild, and Rage are the Holy Trinity). It is hard to imagine that I would love a band that has been through so many changes. I mean lets look at this band's history:

We had pre-Rage in Avenger. We had what I like to call the Manni Schmidt-era of the band. They evolved into a four piece for the "Black In Mind" era. We even had orchestra Rage thrown in there as well. I've really adored the band through all the lineups and musical changes of their career. With "Soundchaser" we have the fourth consecutive Rage album to feature the deadliest 3-piece in metal today; Victor Smolski (guitar), Mike Terrana (drums), and Peavy (bass,vocals).

Yes, this lineup is tighter than Anvil!

Last year's "Unity" release found the band concentrating more on their early metal library with more melody, faster numbers and sci-fi songwriting. "Unity" was great. "Soundchaser" is even better.

Victor Smolski plays like a madman here, throwing out razor sharp leads and lightning quick riffs all over tracks like "War Of Worlds", "Soundchaser", and "Human Metal". Rage goes back to the basics on songs like "Defenders Of The Ancient Life", which easily could have been lifted from earlier records like "Reign Of Fear" or "Trapped". "Great Old Ones" has a huge German chorus, with Mike Terrana's drums almost reaching death metal speed.

Peavy is pure gold here with vocals that sound energetic and full of life. The whole band just sounds perfectly tuned here, creating memorable songs that stick with you long after the disc stops spinning. Helloween frontman Andi Deris even stops by to throw in some vocals for "Wake The Nightmare". Nice touch.

If you love the "Trapped", "Missing Link", and "End Of All Days" albums, then "Soundchaser" will blow you away!

Rage can do no wrong in my opinion. Lets hope they never go away and keep making metal like this forever!

Please come to America again damnit!!


--EC 11.3.03
About this Writer:
Eric Compton // Eric Compton lives in the most haunted city in the world, St. Augustine, Florida with his family and two yorkies. He has served as senior editor for MaximumMetal.com for nearly 10 years and is the author of the heavy metal book series--Denim & Letters. His reviews, interviews and social commentary has been featured on websites like Brave Words, Blabbermouth, Metal Temple, Metal Rules, Ultimate Metal, Metal Maniacs and Wikipedia.

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.



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