Metal Bulletin Zine (est. 2006) is a metal music zine (Seattle region), online and on paper. 160 issues so far.
online pdfs available at www.fuglymaniacs.com
on Twitter: www.twitter.com/MetalBulletinZn
Thursday, March 3, 2016
Holy Grail (review by MMB)
Times of Pride and Peril
Release: 12 February 2016
Recently, this band appears to be making some headway in the vicious jungle world of the music business, getting their name out there and some coverage in the press. They kind of stand out, too, don't they?: a younger band from California playing traditional heavy metal, amongst all that fat-angry-bear-growling-screaming metal and all those 80s L.A. has-beens still hanging around because they have run of out money for certain illicit substances. Holy Grail is not glam and they are not extreme metal, they are traditional heavy metal with singing and lots of shredding and hooks. Hey, sounds like a good idea, to me!
They have been dedicated to traditional heavy metal for years now. In fact, Metal Archives shows that the first recording is from 2009. Ever since then they have always found people who enjoy their particular style and there are more than a few reviews on the internet that show that they are impressing new people with each new recording. This 2016 album is the third album and follows the 2013 album "Ride the Void," a work that has an average of 90/100 at Metal Archives. That is not a bad score at all, and assuming the reviews are not written by the band themselves under fake names (or by the band's parents or friends), it means that some people are catching on to what this band does.
The new album is a further consolidation of the catchy tunes that they are becoming known for. Time after time when I have listened, I notice that the songs work well, they flow, are ear friendly in the way classic-style heavy metal can be. They have hit-type songs with lots of melody; very easy to remember. Some of the numbers sound thrashier, some more melodic, others like stadium rock anthems, and a few surprises here and there, while the band puts the singing and the guitar playing at the center. As with most traditional metal with singing, it is necessary that you listen for yourself and hear if you like the voice. There are lots of high notes on the album, so high vocal sections are a real part of the songwriting in this case. Overall, the band has done a solid job and you can tell that they want to have songs that people can relate to and sing with the band. Heck, that's not a crime nowadays, is it? They are serious about the band and they want to win you over, so there's nothing wrong with that at all.
Here's your chance to hear a new band that some people are noticing for their ability to write good heavy metal songs in the traditional way. How about giving a chance to these California musicians doing their best to work for the glory of their art?
Listen to the complete album at the link below.