If Judas Priest ever die in a plane crash or something, and their reincarnated beings end up together again, chances are you might get something like the Swedish band Midnight Sun. There's the leather and, more importantly, there's the music that definitely harkens back to certain metal gods.

Which is probably why their opening track is called "Metal Gods", though I am not quite so sure if such immodesty is quite appropriate. Midnight Sun produce melodic heavy metal with rather good vocals, including up-tempo tracks like "Steel to Steel" and slower mayhem in the shape of "Temple of the Graal" and "Your Blood Burns in Hell". There's even a sing-along metal anthem, "Metal Will Stand Tall", and some really good guitar work on the heavy title track as well as a guitar/synth duet on the great track "Distorted Eyes". As is evident by these song titles, the band is full of cliches...but, hey, just because they're cliche doesn't mean it's bad.

This band, which has been around since 1997 and with "Metal Machine" delivers their fourth album, definitely adds something relevant (if rather Priest-induced) to the music we know and love.



Written November 2001


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