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On disc: Ultimatum

Lex Metalis - Claudia Ehrhardt - 3 stars

Lex Metalis

Lex Metalis
(Retroactive Records - 2009)

Lex Metalis is Latin for 'metal is the law' - and that describes the motto of Ultimatum. The band from Albuquerque started in the early 90's. This is their 5th studio album and their way to honor their heroes... Another cover album. The covers vary from heavy metal bands like Quiet Riot to old Iron Maiden to thrash á la Overkill and Megadeth.
Musically the quartet is based in thrash metal and so they present the songs in their own way. The opener is Metal Church's Ton Of Bricks, a song I love, but in the Ultimatum way it doesn't get me. Drummer Alan Tuma was in The Moshketeers and they present Locked In Chains from these band and as I don't know the original I can't tell you much about this one. But somehow it sounds to me much like their Metal Church cover... You can identify Metallica's Creeping Death quite easily, but personally the vocals annoy me. After a Saxon classic they offer a Mortification track... Actually you should expect the songs to differ a lot, but just the growls at Gut Wrench really make a difference.... The low point is Metal Health and it's mainly the singer who ruins the songs. In the booklet he explains why they choose the particular songs, but most of the songs a metal fan has already in the original version or as a good cover. Okay, Motörhead's Iron Fist isn't too bad, but even here you miss the original vocals. Wrathchild was among my favorites for many years, if I would have heard this version I would never dig it. As a long time Overkill fan the Ulitmatum Powersurge version just make me pick up the original and give it a spin. No thanks, for me this album is a waste of time.
Okay, the guys aren't bad and they present the songs in their own way, some songs don't even carry the typical sound of the original and singer Scott Waters doesn't have the vocal range to do all the different styles. Actually it's the vocals which annoy me.... Sorry, but in times were tons of CDs are released every month, it's tough to survive and with a cover album it's impossible. Sure, there are always some metal fans who will like a release, but almost everybody is tight on money and personally I would recommend to look for some other CD to spend your money for.

3 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt


           ©2008-2010 by Claudia Ehrhardt • E-Mail:

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