Thursday, September 11, 2008

Cast Iron - Leather & Metal (Ep) (320)

line-up :

Tomi Tervola - Drums
Jarkko Suomalainen - Bass
Antti Salminen - Guitars
Jori Meriläinen - Guitar,Vocals

Originally made as a CD-R in less than hundred copies, with a slightly different
cover, to be given for free at the Keep It True X festival in Germany, April
2008 as promotion only.

Released as pro CD by Thunderknights in May 2008.

Review :

In recent years we’ve seen a great many dare I say “clone” bands take off. We have Germany’s StormWarrior who emulate a more bombastic, Teutonic Walls of Jericho sound, Sweden’s Portrait who are haunting echo away from Circa ’84 era Mercyful Fate and the ton of bands who seem to unsuccessfully claw at hopes of one day sounding like gods Judas Priest and Iron Maiden. The newest addition to these ranks is young Finnish hopefuls Cast Iron who don’t just, take inspiration from Running Wild’s first two hellish outputs but rather (it would seem more appropriate to say) pay homage to them in the most extreme sort of ways.

The four track demo could almost be put seamlessly in between Branded & Exiled and Under Jolly Roger and not raise an eyebrow, Except for a few slight hitches. Maybe the main one being the production, No matter how retro and inspired it sounds with the overflowing amounts of echo and reverb there’s something about digital production that can never sound as bright and refined as an old analogue job.

Musically speaking these guys are every bit just as competent if not more than Running Wild were originally, Certainly more so than any of the demos done before signing Noise Records, But not all bands have humble beginnings. The four songs are all comparable in many ways to Running Wild moments but it’s probably better to comment how the demo shows a slightly lighter shade of the Running Wild sound not featured on the first two albums. Maybe because of vocalist Jori Meriläinen’s more frequent use of high range vocal screams, such as in the chorus’ of Preacher of Evil or Running From the law (Also the highlights from this short demo). Which are a little unlike and more extreme than what Rolf was doing at “the” time. Where’s the intro scream to Out From Hell is a totally Rolf crafted scream almost identical to the intro of Fight The Oppression. No information is available as to who writes which songs and if the lead guitar is shared or solely created by one musician. It’s probably pretty safe to assume in Running Wild fashion both Jori Meriläinen and Antti Salminen throw solos in. They do pretty well considering, lots of twin guitar harmonies akin to what’s found in songs such as Soldiers of Hell and Diabolic Force.

There’s two ways you can look at a project like Cast Iron and this is the point where I will let you decide. Is originality necessary for enjoyment? Or at least partially original (This lacks even that)? Even the picture featured on their website seems intentionally similar to the black & white Running Wild photograph featured on the back of the Gates to Purgatory album. Or are you the type of maniacal fan that was left devastated with the direction chance after Branded & Exiled and lust for more of that very original sound (Even if it’s not from the original source)? I feel obliged to add for the band’s sake I recently read a respected heavy metal philosopher of sorts (from an online metal source I use) comment something along the lines of;

“Don't also most of the really into it HM people eventually pick up instruments and make their own stuff? This is why HM will never die. It encourages hands-on, intimate affection for the form, it is not ‘far away’.”

And although Cast Iron aren’t “original” at all, Their music defiantly has heart and shines with inspiration to the point where these four guys have gone into so much detail to perfect a sound long forgotten and adored by a small cult audience. Defiantly Prisoners of that Time.

1.Out From Hell03:46[view lyrics]
2.Running From The Law04:09[view lyrics]
3.Preacher Of Evil04:25[view lyrics]
4.Leather & Metal05:37[view lyrics]
Total playing time17:56

Download Link

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