True heavy metal fans know there’s no feeling quite like the excitement of coming across a new band or album that appears like it’s going to tick all the right boxes. You glance at the band name and logo, all good so far. Check out the cover art, it rocks (and in this case looks like an epic battle between good and evil fought on desolate wasteland). Then the music comes on and that primal urge takes over to throw the horns and head bang like a lunatic, seriously old school sounding riffs get the blood pumping and then the vocals kick in…. and suddenly you come crashing down to earth with a hell of a wallop; the vocals don’t fit, the illusion is gone. That’s Medevil in a nutshell.
With their debut release Conductor Of Storms, Medevil could have been off to one hell of a great start. Instead, this album is a bit of a let down and the main reason falls firmly on the shoulders of vocalist Liam Collingwood who delivers his lines with some sort of croaking style which is totally at odds with the traditional metal bombast that surrounds him. In the end, he comes across like a weakened Mille Petrozza (Kreator) singing power metal. Not a match made in heaven…or hell.
Medevil are obviously a talented bunch of lads and rhythm guitarist Brett Gibbs and lead guitarist Gary Cordsen deserve a great deal of praise for their assured performances throughout; at times Cordsen’s tone is reminiscent of Alex Skolnick (Testament) at his melodic best. There are highlights and the one track that really proves this band has potential is the closing epic “The Fabled Uxoricide”. Featuring a myriad of timing and tempo changes, this song is simply a joy to behold.
Medevil are a young band and while Conductor Of Storms may be home to some perfunctory traditional metal, it would be foolish to write them off just yet. They do have it in them to write some great music….if only they could remedy those ill-fitting vocals. 5/10