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Attic - The Invocation

The Invocation
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 27 December 2012, 3:18 PM

Following older idols might get you somewhere as long as those vintage gods won’t be copied or mimicked in such a fashion that might display the artist as without an identity of his own. That is a tricky issue because reaching out to a new kind of uniqueness is really tough so probably there is no escape from taking some of the influence along the way. I say why not? As long as new material is forged and not some obvious repetition of someone else’s earlier works, it can head up to substantial career heights. I have had my dealings, meaning listening, to bands in the vein of early 80s MERCYFUL FATE, SATAN, and darkened NWOBHM from the English dungeon with a tasty flavour of the old JUDAS PRIEST of the late 70s and early 80s. However, the main elements that have been guiding such bands as PORTRAIT, GENOCIDE and now the band I am featuring here from Germany named ATTIC, were taken from the darkest pits of King Diamond and his old crew of the FATE club other than the rocking nature that NWOBHM shared back in its golden age. Every band takes something else from its favourite artists that helped them, in a spiritual way, pave their road up. Through ATTIC’s debut album, “The Invocation”, via Van Records, it seemed to me that the entire early MERCYFUL FATE doctrine, meaning the classic “Melissa” and “Don’t Break The Oath” era, was on display right before my very eyes, including the makeup and look. Yet, it didn’t make me run away screaming blasphemy, but quite the opposite.

Similar in overall production that sent me back to find the riches of the old NWOBHM sensation, charming, yet with an edge of mystery, guitar melodies by great twin axmen, not Michael Denner nor Hank Sherman but Katteand Rob, which also supplied a wide range of absorbing solos that felt like an addiction. Drums and bass by Chris and Roman that set a good tone that became even peppy and speedier in such a manner that took the material into corners that the old tunes of MERCYFUL FATE didn’t reach but something more of the “Court In Act” era of SATAN. At the front end of the band stood the next in line, probably the next King, or at least one that might be taking a shot as the next high valued horrific vocalist in Heavy Metal, Meister Cagliostro. With a truly amazing voice that kept the material sweeping in such a trance that it was hard to let it go, the Meister showed that he has something to prove and taking ATTIC out of the underground and into a proper recognition. Nothing and no one will replace King Diamond, which recently made a comeback himself with his longstanding solo act, but listening to such an inspiring tone of voice that here and there changes into a mid-leveler one day to be a bit more demonic verge, it is a sure pleasure nonetheless.

“The Headless Horseman”, or the headless rider as it was stated so beautifully all throughout the choruses, took ATTIC up beyond the good stuff they have been demonstrating all throughout the album. Evil and horror have been an integral part of this band’s repertoire, as an influenced MERCYFUL FATE act should, but the ones on this number made me recollect on King Diamond’s later endeavors on “Abigail”, something in the area of “Arrival” and “A Mansion In Darkness” but without the manic Andy LaRoque major lead guitar antics. However, I wouldn’t say that ATTIC’s melodic nature didn’t inspire, and of course Meister Cagliostro’s vocals, especially on the chorus. The haunting perception of “Join The Coven” and “Funeral In The Woods”can be recognized as lost tracks of the “Don’t Break The Oath” album. Of course that without the main guitar melodies these were a bit blank, yet the integration with the rhythm guitars and the incredible singing, made me twitch in my chair.

“The Invocation” might sound similar in orientation to old MERCYFUL FATE albums but it surly fulfilled its role with greatness. Again nothing will replace the king and his legacy, but ATTIC has style and they really know how to keep it vintage and classic. In short, a well-produced album, great guitars, awesome drumming and a one piece of vocalist that has been having a great teacher to follow. Check this one out and fast.

4 Star Rating

1. The Hidden Grave
2. Funeral In The Woods
3. Join The Coven
4. Edlyn
5. Ghost of the Orphanage
6. In The Chapel
7. The Invocation
8. The Headless Horseman
9. Satan's Bride
10. Evil Inheritance 
Meister Cagliostro- Vocals
Katte- Guitar
Rob- Guitar
Chris- Bass
Roman- Drums
Record Label: Van Records


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