Spirit Web, from the Chicago area, have released their debut album of 'power metal that shreds' on Mausoleum Records recently. The individual band members have been around for a longer time, playing in a variety of bands. The members are each of them quite accomplished in the use of their instruments, for example there's some totally shredding guitar work going on in the rather good "Days of Nowhere". Vocalist Scott Hufmann at times sounds like Ray "Fates Warning" Alder, which is not the worst you can say of any singer. Most memorable moment is "Osiris by the Judge", a great song using Egyptian scales which set it apart from the rest. "Once Beyond" is another good track, vocally reminiscent of Angels With Dirty Faces (who?!). However, in the end I concluded that there are two good tracks, one very good track, a decent singer, a good guitarist...but other than that there is nothing that sticks between the ears. In "Reflections and Sighs" and "Blind Faith", for example, they are playing a veritable collection of riffs like there is no tomorrow...none of them memorable. There is a lot of stuff going on, but somehow to me it comes across meaningless. I know there was a famous journalist who wrote, "Guns'n'Roses...with such a stupid name they won't amount to anything". Still, I don't think I am going out on much of a limb here if I say that Spirit Web won't end up in many "Top x" music charts at the end of this year, despite their obvious musical qualities.



Written August 2002


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