Metal Allegiance – ‘Fallen Heroes’ EP Review

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Metal Allegiance are back with this surprise three-track EP which pays tribute to three recently fallen heroes – Lemmy Kilmister (Motorhead – as if you needed telling), David Bowie and Glenn Frey (Eagles). Boasting three tracks with guest appearances from Troy Sanders, Mark Osegueda and Alissa White-Gluz, this special EP will be available digitally and as part of a bundle which feastures a download, a 12×12” Lithograph of the cover and a T shirt.

The EP opens with a blistering rendition of ‘Iron Fist’ (with Troy Sanders) which does a fantastic job of capturing the raw punk fury of Motorhead at their thuggish best. Altering little, this is a straight forward cover that blazes with the enthusiasm bought to the project by bassist Mark Manghi, drummer Mike Portnoy and guitarist Alex Skolnick. In contrast, the band pick up on the latent power of David Bowie’s ‘Suffragette city’ (from ‘the rise and fall of Ziggy Stardust…’) and give it a damned good kicking, the likes of which the Thin White Duke would undoubtedly have approved. Fast and furious, Mike Portnoy clearly enjoyed throwing fills at the song with abandon whilst Mark Osegueda imbues the track with a punkish edge that harks back to the live performances given by the always-ramshackle Spiders (just check out the soundtrack to the motion picture) towards the end of their dissolute reign of terror. The EP’s final track sees Alissa White-Gluz deliver a powerful performance on Eagle’s classic ‘life in the fast lane’, another song which is delivered at breakneck pace with Alex Skolnick in particular shining as he lays down bluesy solos that are now iron-tipped.

As Alex Skolnick notes in the trailer for the ‘Fallen Heroes’ EP, it has been a difficult year for music with numerous deaths shocking the rock and metal community, and this is the perfect way to pay tribute to those remarkably talented artists. As cathartic as the experience must have been for the musicians involved, listening to the EP is similarly cathartic for the listener, as the music that defined several generations raises its head and roars once more. Of the three tracks, ‘Iron fist’ is the most straight forward purely because, when you’re covering Motorhead where else is there left to go?! The tracks form David Bowie and the Eagles are played respectively but, at the same time, they’re given a sound metal makeover that captures the fire and the fury of the originals and adds something of the personalities of the Metal Allegiance crew into the mix. This is a heartfelt and heart-warming tribute to some truly inspirational figures and well worth a listen.

You can order the bundle here: www.districtlines.com/metal-allegiance

9/10

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