One wonders why bands wear their narcotics on their sleeves. Thunder Of
War was the band's known demo from the 80's. Due to vocal problems at
first Keymer took over the vocals. After two relatively successful and
known albums, the German speed metal unit was not happy with its
progress and loss of members. To make matters worse a three-track demo
was rejected by the band's label and the band quit the scene for some
Years later two original members reformed the band to relative
success and began where they left off years ago. The band yielded to
latest fad and introduced a keyboardist for the new millennium. He
happened to be a relative of another band member. Wilkison was
the band in 2001 initially to replace Aufermann who was unable to tour
the US and recruited full time by Angel Dust later.
The band and bass player Frank Banx parted ways in the autumn of 2003.
Banx left the fold because of differences with the other members. Banx
to the USA, formed Frank Banx Enterprises and announced he will be
reissuing older Angel Dust material. He also joined US band Counter
Clockwise. In the meanwhile, the band was continuing and expected a new
album to be ready for release by the end of 2004.
ANGEL DUST - ENLIGHTEN THE DARKNESS - CENTURY MEDIA
German thrashers Angel Dust (who at one time spun off vocalist S.L. Coe who went on to work with Scanner and Reactor a.o.) is back with a new album, number five actually, and while the overall impression is a positive one there are words of caution. Doing a fine job of competing with compatriots like Gamma Ray et al Angel Dust, like most bands formed in the eighties, understand the need for catchiness and melody. Vocalist Dirk Thurisch, travels the road crossed by Jag Panzer's Conklin and Iced Earth's Barlow, albeit with the patented Teutonic tinge, and is mostly hit rather than miss. Yet the crown goes to Bernd Aufermann on guitars. This man knows metal and knows metal composition and knows metal lead and rhythm. Being that good, it comes as a surprise to hear his subservience to the zealotry of the keyboardist who not only ruins much, but also is often way too loudly mixed for the greater good. A pity; without him Angel Dust would be ranked much higher. Eliminate the offender, axe the femme - in - heat interludes, concentrate on playing to your metallic strengths and this angel will soar to heavenly strata. Still, at over 50 minutes Enlighten...offers lots of good music for the buck. - Ali "The Metallian"
ANGEL DUST - OF HUMAN BONDAGE - CENTURY MEDIA
Germany's Speed metal veterans are back with a slightly adjusted approach and the obligatory line-up change. Despite the biography's claim that guitarist Bernd Aufermann's (now in Running Wild) departure was due to the usual musical differences, last year's US tour is actually to blame. When no tours were planned, Aufermann had booked himself he is a studio musician, guitar teacher and a writer for Rock Hard and could not jump at the surprise opportunity to tour the USA. His replacement, Ritchie Wilkison of Demons & Wizards (with whom Angel Dust have played live), was announced by band and label as a touring guitarist the man was eventually hired full time. Today's AD is a cross between a hard rock and a thrash band. The band's asset is the vocals which never falter and strongly soar. The approach is diluted by the presence of keyboards which is personally deemed as a nuisance. The keyboards take the band from a Jugulator/late Megadeth classification into something resembling Italy's Sadist. The band incorporates a ballad or two and even comes close to Bon Jovi on Freedom Awaits. Despite the multitude of references, Angel Dust is its own creature and not a complicated band to absorb.