Friday, May 21, 2010

Pagan Altar - Lords of Hypocrisy

Genre: NWOBHM/Doom Metal
Country: United Kingdom
Year: 2004
Label: Oracle Promotions

Enter Pagan Altar, lords of keeping it old-school. One of the few NWOBHM groups to play a more doomed-out style, the band was formed 1978 and recorded their first full-length in 1982, but it didn't see release  until 1998. They've picked their career back up, releasing this album in 2004 and the awesome Mythical and Magical full-length in 2008. The magic of this band stems from the fact that they still sound very much stuck in the late 70s, and it's a real treat to listen to. The guitar tone has that sound that simply cannot be reproduced by more up-to-date equipment, and the production is clean and full but retains the mystical decades-past feeling of the music.  Lead guitarist Alan Jones is an absolute wizard with his instrument, churning out unforgettable riffs and soulful leads song after song. Singer Terry Jones obviously still has it, topping the music off with his cool, unique vocals. His voice does a lot to enhance the mood of the album - an aesthetic that is 100% authentic and very, very addictive.  The songs are complex, dynamic, and epic in their own way, but always stay true to the timeless late 70s vibe that pervades every last note of the album's 50 minute runtime. This band is essential for every fan of very old-school rockin' NWOBHM/doom metal. Fantastic.

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