Making the impossible possible, Steel Prophet surpass the lofty, par excellence standards of their previous album, Dark Hallucinations , on their newest one, Messiah . Still the epitome of pistol-precise power metal, Steel Prophet stick to their guns, in some respects, on Messiah , and in others, brandish new ones. With the former (i.e., “the old guns”), the band rages forward in virtually the same manner, but this time around, new drummer Kevin Cafferty’s He-Man chops propel his bandmates headlong into the most scathing yet extremely tuneful waters progressive metal, modern or otherwise, has ever been dipped into; ditto for guitarist/songwriter Steve Kachinsky Blackmoor, a man who seemingly juggles instantly memorable melody, brain surgeon aggression, and technical ecstasy with no difficulty whatsoever.
But with the latter (i.e., “the new guns”), the band places a weightier emphasis on its already keen dynamics, dumping a greater number of slower moments — all of which retain just as much, if not more, power (best example: “Vengeance Attained”) — into the album’s lethal brew, not so much sounding like a different band as one that’s in complete control of its craft, doing whatever it pleases at any tempo or with any texture. And while Steel Prophet’s influences (Iron Maiden, Dio, early Queensryche) are remotely discernible, the band has finally etched an entirely unique name for itself on Messiah , proving Dark Hallucinations was no fluke and that many more great things are to come — in ten years’ time, this band is guaranteed to be legendary in metal circles.
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