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Review: Split Heaven - Street Law
Split Heaven
Street Law

Label: Pure Steel Records
Year released: 2011
Duration: 37:38
Tracks: 10
Genre: Heavy Metal

Rating: 3.5/5

Review online: May 22, 2011
Reviewed by: MetalMike
Readers Rating
Street Law

Rated 3.11/5 (62.22%) (9 Votes)

Street Law is the 3rd full length release from Mexico's Split Heaven and, like its predecessor, 2008's Psycho Samurai, it is full of old school Heavy Metal right out of the 80s. Street Law preserves all the things that appealed to me about Psycho Samurai; twin guitars, energetic performances, an authentically 80s "raw" sounding production and, of course, Eligio Valenzuela's occasionally grating, occasionally Jon Oliva-like screams.

While I commend the band for their consistency, I'm also a bit disappointed with Street Law.

There's nothing inherently wrong with the album, mind you. It's a fun listen, but the band didn't move forward one inch from Psycho Samurai. Street Law could easily be called Psycho Samurai II. I wouldn't mind so much except that I'd hoped the band would improve their songwriting a bit (the songs are still rather generic), that they'd tighten up the production or that Valenzuela would rein in his sometimes off-key warbling more. He goes to the well of high pitched screams more frequently this time, and it is the area he seems least comfortable with. His mid-range, on the other hand, is still high, but gritty, in the vein of former Riot singer Guy Speranza.

So there you have it; another fun album from Split Heaven that fans of 80s Heavy Metal, especially the stuff that had some warts and wasn't all glossy and perfect, should really enjoy. But it is a missed opportunity for the band to take a leap forward, and instead they stand pat.

Other related information on the site
Review: Death Rider (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: Electric Spell (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Psycho Samurai (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: Street Law (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: The Devil's Bandit (reviewed by MetalMike)
Interview with guitarist Pedro Zelbohr on August 14, 2012 (Interviewed by MetalMike)
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