"The Third Secret"

By Colonel Angus

I’m sorry to say that I never heard Fifth Angel back in the 80s.  I remember seeing the ads in Kerrang! magazine but back in the day, money was tight and there was so much music to consume that they fell by the wayside.  Based on “The Third Secret”, I may have missed out on some good music.  This release has a lot going for it in terms or both quality and metal variety.  There are some great power metal tunes at the end of the disk (namely “Shame on You” and “Hearts of Stone”), some ballads, one sappy “Can You Hear me” and one dark “Fatima”, and a bunch of good ol’ fashioned chugging metal.  “Stars Are Falling” and “We Will Rise” are a great one-two punch to start off the record and finishing with the double dose of power metal makes for good sequencing of songs.  Start and finish with great tunes making the listener want to replay the album.  Along the way, you also get songs like the epic sounding title track and straight-ahead rockers like “This Is War” and “Dust to Dust”.  While Fifth Angel is not coming up with anything really new, they are crafting some catchy tunes that performed with conviction and quality.

Based on my research, the members that recorded “The Third Secre”t are part of the 80s incarnation of the band.  Ken Mary (drums) and John Macko (bass) are still present and put in solid performances.  I remember Ken Mary from his days with House of Lords; he was a great drummer then and he still has his skills.  Kendall Bechtel returns after arriving on their “Time Will Tell” record.  On this disk, not only does he provide all the lead guitar work but also the lead vocals.  He has a bit of Ronnie James Dio in his sound and delivery which only makes me like this record even more.  As I mentioned earlier, Fifth Angel is not creating a new genre of metal but what they do, they do extremely well.  Based on “The Third Secret”, I will definitely go back and get their earlier releases.  Too often, bands get overlooked (I’m guilty of this as much as anyone) and it’s a shame because Fifth Angel’s “The Third Secret” deserves to get plenty of attention.