Album Review by Rick Tilley
9 OUT OF 10
Release Date 03/07/2015 Pure Steel Records
As it’s over a year since I’ve written anything about Sacrilege, and that was for a different website, I’m going to update you all briefly on their history before getting onto the latest studio album. This Sacrilege were formed in 1982 by guitarist/vocalist Bill Beadle and they should not be confused with the female fronted Thrash band of the same name who appeared in 1984! Having recorded a demo in 1983 it was sent to The David Jensen TV Show by Bill’s Dad where Sacrilege were picked from thousands of entries as one of six new bands to perform on the show and compete for best new band of 1983. Sacrilege duly turned up to record their particular episode and found themselves performing alongside U2 and The Stranglers who had also been booked to play! Their performance got plenty of exposure and Sacrilege went back into the studio to record the demo album ‘Gates Of Hell which was then followed by a UK Tour including a final date at the legendary Marquee Club in London. Unfortunately, and as was the case so many times during the 80’s, the initial interest didn’t flourish and after slogging away Sacrilege called it a day in 1987 and Bill stopped playing completely!
Twenty years later Bill decided it was time to give things another go and re-recorded much of the old material as well as writing new songs. Since then Sacrilege have released several very good but low key albums, all of which are available at the bands website and are well worth getting! There have also been several line-up changes but in 2015 they signed a deal with Pure Steel Records to release a ‘Best of’ album entitled ‘Ashes To Ashes’ and ‘six6six’ which is the new studio album. I reviewed the compilation album and was due to review this as well but my enforced layoff meant I was unable to do so when the album was originally released. I’m here now to put that record straight and tell you all what a great band Sacrilege are and how, in ‘six6six’ they’ve managed to release the best album of their career!
Ever since first hearing this band in 1983 I’ve always thought they had a unique sound. Mixing the proto Doom of early Black Sabbath, NWOBHM and 1980’s Goth is no mean feat and there isn’t another band around, whom I’ve heard, who do it as well as Sacrilege. ‘Death March six6six’ starts the album off in menacing fashion, being a short but sharp atmospheric and doom laden intro which segues into first track proper ‘Welcome To The Dragons Den’! This is thumptastically old-school Heavy Metal with great riff, chorus, and fingers flying at high speed during the solo. A great way to begin and a sweetener for next track ‘Lucifer’s Soldier’s. This is much slower and laced with doom, a chugging riff overlaid with vocals placed somewhere between Ozzy and early Candlemass. ‘In Hell’ is next and is an even more despairing and bleak tale which pays a huge homage to the song ‘Black Sabbath’ with Bill excelling in the vocal department. It is also my favourite track on the album!’six6six’continues in this fashion, switching between Doom and mid paced Metal monsters. ’I Can’t Die’ and ‘Eyes Of The Lord’ also stand out amidst an album of highlights. Closing with a reprise of the opening ‘Death March’ brings ‘six6six’full circle to a very satisfying climax!
Sacrilege have always been a fabulous live band outstripping what they do in the studio but now that this line-up has been stable for a couple of years with the band gigging regularly around the UK and further afield ‘six6six’ boasts a sound that is the nearest I’ve heard to what they recreate live. Bill, Neil Turnbull (Drums), Jeff Rolland (Bass) and Tony Vanner (Guitar) are all excellent musicians and that togetherness is really starting to pay off in a studio setting. To add to this the album is excellently produced and mixed and the cover artwork (which seems almost a companion piece to the compilation album) is brilliantly dark and once again brings to mind early Candlemass albums.
Sacrilege definitely deserve their time to shine and for you to miss out on either their albums, especially this one, or seeing them in a live setting would be a criminal offence. I’ve also been lucky enough to chat with Bill on many occasions over the last couple of years and you really couldn’t wish to meet a nicer gentleman. In 2017 if you see their name on a gig or festival poster make the effort to go and see them and say Hi! You won’t regret it. I’m also itching to see if there is going to be a new studio album because if ‘six6six’is anything to go by the next one could well be a monster!
- Death March six6six
- Welcome To The Dragon’s Den
- Lucifer’s Soldier’s
- In Hell
- Forever After
- I Can’t Die
- Eyes Of The Lord Prologue
- Eyes Of The Lord
- Death March six6six Reprise
- Bill Beadle – Vocals/Guitar
- Neil Turnbull – Drums
- Jeff Rolland – Bass
- Tony Vanner – Guitar
- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KdWGrqYcFzI (six6six Promo Reel with clips from all songs on the album)
Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Richard Tilley and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to do adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.