|Review: Rob Rock - Garden of Chaos|
|Garden of Chaos|
Label: AFM Records
Year released: 2007
Genre: Power Metal
Review online: June 18, 2008
Reviewed by: Larry Griffin
for:Garden of Chaos
Ahh, the smell of ass-kicking is in the air again, like bitter cannon smoke after a battle, and Rob Rock is the general in command. This is his latest offering of high-octane, pounding riff-and-chorus Heavy Metal, and if you ever liked him in the past, you won't find anything to change your mind here. Garden of Chaos is one of those albums that offers absolutely nothing in the way of innovation or any pretentious crap like that, but it does what it sets out to do SO FUCKING WELL that any pretenses of "it's too generic" or "I want something that sounds different" can be immediately disregarded, and those who said them shamefully corrected...with a solid ironclad boot print right in the middle of their asses.
So what exactly does Garden of Chaos do so well? Rob Rock's charmingly old school Heavy Metal aesthetics have never failed to please, especially when brought into the modern context that this album offers, and here the choruses are bigger, the riffs are cooler, and the production is better than ever, making for, on paper, just about one of the coolest "pure" Metal albums to come out last year, up there with winners like Hardworlder and The Curse of Crystal Viper. Rob's steely air-raid wailing is combined with the heavy, bludgeoning classic metal riffs and screaming solos of the inimitable Roy Z, and it is truly a match made in heaven, for the performances here are so good that you'll probably have to keep a rag handy to wipe off the drool.
Aside from being a maelstrom of Heavy Metal the way it was meant to be played, Garden of Chaos shares another element of the two modern classics mentioned in the paragraph above in that it is unabashedly and blatantly wearing its influences on its sleeves, a virtual melting pot of classic Metal influences that will put a smile on even the old man in the corner who won't listen to anything released after 1989. Fuck, listen to the twin guitar attack intro of "Metal Breed" and tell me that couldn't have been on Powerslave, and that the galloping, stomping metallic fare of "Millennial Reich" couldn't have been on Ample Destruction, or that "Savior's Call" wouldn't fit in well on Stained Class. And that isn't even all there is, either, with standouts like the opening boom of the title track, the catchy "Satan's Playground," the epic "Spirit in the Sky" and the sinister, grooving "Only a Matter of Time" being highly entertaining melodic crackers that will get your head banging - and if they don't, then what are you doing reading this website?
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