“Volume II: Power Drunk Majesty”

By Dr. Abner Mality

Metal Allegiance is a kind of all-star heavy metal mish mash featuring tons of well-known bangers jamming together. The first edition of the project came across as kind of a fun novelty, but the core members swear they are now a serious band on the second go-round. The tone is certainly much more serious here and very political as well. How does it stack up musically?

There are certainly some strong performances and songs here, but the overall impression one gets is of “typical” metal just shy of the mainstream. It’s an enjoyable record to listen to if you’re not totally pledged to the underground but at times sounds a little generic. The best songs come early….Armored Saint’s John Bush puts in a typically excellent vocal performance on the chugging “Bound By Silence”, which does sound like something that could have come off a Saint album. “Mother of Sin” featuring Overkill’s Blitz and “Terminal Illusion” with Accept’s Mark Tornillo are two real rippers executed with passion and fire. I don’t think Blitz has ever given anything less than his best on any song and this is no exception. “Terminal Illusion” is even better and is the best track without a doubt….just an intense, blazing metal song with Tornillo outstanding on vocals.

Elsewhere, results are more variable. “Voodoo of the Godsend” with Max Cavalera on vocals sounds like an obvious Sepultura/Soulfly knockoff and not a particularly good one. “Liars And Thieves” featuring Mastodon’s Troy Sanders starts off very much like a variation of Ministry’s “Thieves” but features a nice burst of thrash in the middle. The only guy who appears in two songs is Death Angel’s Mark Osegueda, who lends his dulcet tones to “Impulse Control” and “Power Drunk Majesty Part One”. His smooth and melodic tones are always enjoyable to hear, but the vocal performance of the album comes from Floor Jansen on “Power Drunk Majesty, Part Two”…this lady can SING! Very soaring and epic sounding tune, as well.

The rest of the album is on the average side but nothing is really bad. Metal Allegiance has come up with a good second album, but I think they will always sound like a take-off of more established bands.