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Review: Virgin Steele - Age of Consent
Virgin Steele
Age of Consent

Label: Dockyard 1
Year released: 2008
Originally released in: 1989
Tracks: 18
Genre: Heavy Metal


Review online: March 29, 2009
Reviewed by: Bruce Dragonchaser
Readers' Rating
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Rated 4.55/5 (90.91%) (66 Votes)

With the Power Metal genre in full swing thanks to Helloween and Running Wild, small US bands started to scratch their heads and began tinkering with the sound of Heavy Metal on the continent, particularly notable genius David DeFeis - who arguably helped it get to its feet in the first place - with Virgin Steele's follow up to the mighty Noble Savage, the epic Age of Consent, the second album of theirs to receive the re-master treatment recently. Hey, you don't hear me complaining.

Production wise, Age of Consent fared much better than their preceding outings, and as the songs themselves took a more straightforward approach, Age of Consent certainly seems to have benefited from recent public attention, but as a whole it's nowhere near as innovative as its predecessor, despite projecting a modern atmosphere in what was – let's be honest – an 1980s environment.

Still, there is much to be said about the album; it produced some of the band's most memorable work in "Lion In Winter", "On the Wings of the Night" and the stirring Power Metal workout of "The Burning of Rome (Cry for Pompeii)", all of which are worth forking out for VS fan boys and Power Metal aficionados alike. Throughout, the drums pound like cannons, the guitars roar like prehistoric beasts, and DeFeis screams like an expectant mother in labour, which is all in equal measure to the supreme glut of catchy melodies and anthemic soloing, soaring orchestration and jagged riffing, and indomitable lyric state and clarity of mind.

Virgin Steele's sound has always been on the cutting edge of invention, but at a whopping eighteen tracks, Age of Consent, in its newest incarnation, is way too long and just not dense enough to warrant such a run time. Certainly a building block for the metal titans, and one that should find a place in your collection, whatever the cost.

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