Every once in a while a band comes along that breaks the mold. Familiar yet original with a confidence in what they do that only a seasoned band can understand.
St. Madness, celebrated their 20th anniversary in 2013, bring the power of Pantera, the end of the world doom of Black Sabbath, the aggressive tone of Motorhead and a sound and fury that is 100% their own on Carnimetal.
Topping it all off, they do it while wearing vampire/corpse paint. Unlike most bands with a gimmick, the music forces you to take them seriously.
You’ve got to know what you’re doing and be utterly confident in your abilities to cover not one, but TWO institutions of hard rock and metal. St. Madness nail them both with the heady but very heavy “Comfortably Numb” (originally Pink Floyd) and then follow up later in the album with “Sweet Leaf” (by Black Sabbath), complete with an airy guitar solo from the former and coughing fit from the latter.
Carnimetal has it all, from the fast paced thrasher “Death Drives A Buick” to the tongue in cheek “Carl the Clown” (complete with circus music main guitar hook!) to the Iced Earth-esque “Ever After”. Yet on every track, you know it’s St. Madness. Prophet’s raspy and powerful vocals are as unmistakeable as they come, with a very Lemmy Kilminster feel. The guitar work is spot on and stellar, whether sparkling clean and acoustic or screaming with enough distortion to border on feedback.
The tracks I found myself going back to were “Vampires in the Church”, “Ever After”, and “Death Drives A Buick”. I also particularly enjoyed the final track, “Blood, Guts, and Glory”, which while not entirely an instrumental, captured the same feel as a song like “Mr. Scary”, if considerably heavier.
The band is currently putting the finishing touches on their 10th studio album.
St. Madness define originality, bringing elements together from the masters in a truly masterful way, all while dialing up the heat like the Arizona sun they call home. Carnimetal lives up to its purpose as a true best of’ compilation, there isn’t a song on the album that doesn’t kick ass! Scorch the land, take no prisoners, and watch out for Carl the Clown (and Lester)! \m/
St. Madness are:
- Prophet – Vocals
- Sid Ripster – Guitar
- Scarlet Rivers – Bass
- Dcay – Drums