Duel – In Carne Persona

In Carne Persona Album Cover Art

Duel – In Carne Persona
Heavy Psych Sounds
Release Date: 01/10/2021
Running Time: 38:41
Review by Alun Jones
8.5/10

Wait, it can’t be time for a new Duel album, surely? It only seems like yesterday that I reviewed their last work for Ever Metal. Time flies when you’re having fun, eh? Well, that last album “Valley Of Shadows”, also from Heavy Psych Sounds, was released back in 2019 – so yes, it’s time for more Duel. My cryo-freeze unit must have kept me out of trouble for longer than I thought.

Austin, Texas is where they came from, though Duel’s real home is good ol’ heavy metal and greasy hard rock. Whereas with the previous record review, I made comparisons to stoner rock and 70’s proto metal, this time around, “In Carne Persona” has a much more trad metal approach. Thundering out of the gates on the very first track, ‘Children Of The Fire’ has a galloping, early Maiden sound.

The NWOBHM influence rages throughout the album, with some classic Sabbath heaviness and Thin Lizzy style melody for good measure. Second track ‘The Veil’ illustrates both sides of those 70’s references with a pounding riff and laser sharp solo.

Tracks like ‘Anchor’ and ‘Bite Back’ take the intensity of Trouble or Saint Vitus and ramp up the pace with a ferocious Priest-like power. ‘Lizard Tongue’ delivers the boogie, whilst final track ‘Blood On The Claw’ provides an epic finish to the proceedings. Bringing the album to a huge and satisfying conclusion; it builds slowly, contrasting heavy chugging sections with refrained passages.

Superb bombastic vocals crown masterful musicianship that evokes the past masters, making “In Carne Persona” another triumphant album from Duel. Throughout it all, Duel create a dark and brooding atmosphere, that effectively stamps their own authenticity on the old template. Dark but never grim, it’s always exciting.

I remember a duel of sorts in my days with Purple. One night whilst on tour somewhere, we decided to have a game of beer Russian roulette. Thirty cans of lager on the table, one had been shaken up by yours truly and placed randomly back amongst the others. Participants would then open one can at a time next to their ear; one unlucky player would obviously suffer the frothy consequences.

Gillan, Lord and Blackmore all started well – springing open cans next to their heads which didn’t explode, so they could drink them down. Eventually, and inevitably, it was Ritchie who took the shaken beer to the head, he was soaked and screamed petulantly at Gillan, blaming the singer for his misfortune. It wasn’t like he didn’t know what to expect! Blackmore stormed off leaving the rest of us in hysterics. What was really funny was, when Ritchie wasn’t looking, I’d switched cans on him with another frothed up bullet. Ha!

‘Children Of The Fire’ (Audio)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Children Of The Fire
02. The Veil
03. Anchor
04. Behind The Sound
05. Bite Back
06. Wave Of Your Hand
07. Dead Eyes
08. Lizard Tongue
09. Blood On The Claw

LINE-UP:
Tom Frank – Guitar & Vocals
Shaun Avants – Bass & Vocals
Justin Collins – Drums
Jeff Henson – Guitar & Vocals

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Alun Jones 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 adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Haunt – Beautiful Distraction

Beautiful Distraction Album Cover Art

Haunt – Beautiful Distraction
Church Recordings
Release Date: 02/04/2021
Running Time: 38:46
Review by Rick Eaglestone
7.5/10

Right now, I seem to be craving the 80’s metal sound and once again California’s Haunt have come to my rescue with their latest offering “Beautiful Destruction”.

Recorded, mixed, and mastered by guitarist and front man Trevor William Church, and released through his label Church Recordings, “Beautiful Distraction” took on new life during the COVID-19 pandemic as Church let fans interact and help finish multiple forgotten songs. He says…

“Beautiful Distraction was a different album to do than my previous albums. I let the fans interact with me on old songs that I had left in the dust. We polished them up through Facebook Live, and this album was born.”

The album opens up with the title track. Lyrically this is a ballad but contains riffs and solos galore –  the midway point, for example, being my favourite of the entire album.

‘In Our Dreams’ would not be out of place on an early Ozzy solo album, this is followed by the incredibly catchy ‘Fortune’s Wheel’ which, subsequently, leads into my personal highlight of the album ‘Face Of Danger’.

Haunt like to play fast and take it to a new level with ‘Sea Of Dreams’. It’s a song that really helps blow the cobwebs off in the morning and get you started for the day ahead and the following ‘Keeping Watch’ compliments it perfectly. Unfortunately, I couldn’t really get into ‘Imaginary Borders’ & ‘A Fools Paradise’, which is a shame because ‘Hearts On Fire’ (not a Hammerfall cover) is fantastic.

The album closes with ‘It’s In My Hands’ which, if I’m perfectly honest, I’ve found quite inspirational and the lyrics have really resonated with me, so although I may have struggled with a few of the tracks this still has me excited for the next release.

‘In Our Dreams’ (Lyric Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Beautiful Distraction
02. In Our Dreams
03. Fortune’s Wheel
04. Face Of Danger
05. Sea Of Dreams
06. Keeping Watch
07. Imaginary Borders
08. A Fool’s Paradise
09. Hearts On Fire
10. It’s In My Hands

LINE-UP:
Trevor William Church – Guitars, Drums, Bass, Vocals
Fili Bibiano – Lead Guitars

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Rick Eaglestone 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 adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.