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Power Theory - An Axe To Grind

Power Theory
An Axe To Grind
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 28 June 2012, 3:25 PM

As a rather enthusiastic 80s Metal fan, I have always known that in most cases the collaboration between US Metal and European Metal, especially the German kind, is the positive grounds for amazing results. Both of the Metal scenes, the American, which has been highly influenced by NWOBHM from day one, and the German, which hasn’t been a stranger to the old British authority but in a way incorporated its own attitude and approach, likes to sound powerful and ominous. There is nothing better than to sound heavy and bombastic. On the other hand, it can sound like a full Metal jacket, but deep within it is like a rotting apple being eaten by a pack load of worms. That is exactly what I had in mind after listening to the second album, “An Axe To Grind”, via Pure Steel Records, of the US Heavy Metal band, POWER THEORY. As much as I desired for something to bag me right in the face with a fistful of Metal, my prayers weren’t answered and that saddened me.

Don’t get me wrong, “An Axe To Grind” started out with a roaring thunder bearing the sign of True Metal. The first three tracks, “Edge Of Knives”, “Deceiver” and “Pure Steel”, were a fine onslaught of diverse tempo Heavy Metal crossing mutual lines with great German acts such as ACCEPT and GRAVE DIGGER along with British giants as IRON MAIDEN. You can say that throughout the album these three bands stood out as the predominant influences that have been leading POWER THEORY into new panoramas since their early days. I think that “Deceiver”, in comparison to the rest of the tracks, has been the most interesting one. The chorus is rather brutal and straight to the face while the main riff is catchy and hard to let go. Like most of the song structures on the album, this one wasn’t different with its basic features. “Pure Steel” made me think of how much this band really love their label, if that was really the case behind this song. I liked the keenness at the back of the composition as it showed true motivation. “Edge Of Knives” is a true US Metal work in the vein of early to mid 80s Metal bands. There is a little touch of mid 80s MANOWAR and a slight tap of MALICE among the many, toughness and great passages are the factual steel about this one.

However, when I started listening to the fourth track and on it became rather repetitive and tedious. It seemed to me that POWER THEORY were digging their own grave in the name of True Metal without wishing to step forward into new horizons. Never have I expected them to start playing progressive music, but as musician in a traditional Metal band, there nothing better than zinging your compositions with a level of stepping outside the box. Believe it or not my friends, this is also considered as true. “On the Inside” aimed to be more than the usual repetitive type shown on the large sum of the tracks, but it didn’t reach the glory of the first three. I haven’t listened to the debut album of the band yet, and maybe I should have done my own comparisons. Yet as far as this album goes, it has the right sound pattern that a diehard fan would anticipate but it lacks a good material quality. Potential is in the air but it has to be reached.

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Edge of Knives
2. Deceiver
3. Pure Steel
4. An Axe to Grind
5. A Fist in the Face of God
6. The Seer
7. On the Inside
8. Colossus
9. The Hammer Strikes 
Lineup:
Bob Ballinger – Guitar / Backing Vocals
Dave Santini – Lead Vocals
Jay Pekala - Bass
Lorin Savadore - Drums
Record Label: Pure Steel Records
     


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