And so from the ashes, the Phoenix may rise…such is the case with SILVER TALON. When SPELLCASTER ended everyone except the former vocalist decided to form a new group, one that was better…faster…stronger. The riffs riff harder, and the vocal melodies soar higher than ever before on the debut EP Becoming a Demon (out now, Rapid Fire Records/Alone Records). I didn’t even know this was in the works till last week when I spoke with Bryce VanHoosen, guitar shredder for the band. But I am very happy that I know them now!
There are six proper songs here, as well as an intro and outro. Starting us off is “Devil Machine”, vocalist Wyatt Howell having just the right amount of grit and power highs. If this isn’t a recipe for success, I don’t know what is. VanHoosen weaves a sonic web of heavy combined with some stellar dual harmonized lead work. “Silver Talon” was an instant favorite because it is fast and riff-laden sure, but you also get to hear what bassist Gabriel Franco and drummer Colin Vranizan are up to just a little bit higher in the mix.
The hits keep a-comin’ with the shred-tastic “Speed of the Night.” If more Power Metal bands played like this I’d be into the genre a lot more than I am. This one’s a neck-wrecker for sure. A change of pace is next tempo-wise with “Cold Embrace”, but the fact of the matter is that it’s just as hard if not harder than the previous tracks. Can’t stress enough how fucking great the guitars are! The intro to “Warriors’ End” is very fluid, as is the rest of the song. This is something I could see IRON MAIDEN doing around the Somewhere In Time record. That’s a compliment, boys.
I was a bit nervous when I saw a cover of SANCTUARY’S “Battle Angels” because to me those songs on that debut are unfuckwithable. But I gotta admit, here the band, and Howell really makes the song his own without trying to mimic the late Warrel Dane (R.I.P.) who was in a class by himself. As a bonus, legendary guitarist Jeff Loomis (do I even have to??) guest stars. All told I think SILVER TALON really nailed it on this record, and if the songs on Becoming a Demon are any indication, then the future for this group is bright indeed. This one is a must have!
STANDOUT TRACKS: “Warriors End”, “Speed of the Night”, “Silver Talon”