a l b u m r e v i e w s


THE CAGE / THE CAGE
LABEL: KING RECORDS JAPAN KICP-684
OVERALL: 81%
Produced by: Dario Mollo
  1. Cry Myself To Death
  2. Time To Kill
  3. The Cage / If You Believe
  4. Relax
  5. Smoke & Mirrors
  6. Infinity
  7. Dead Man Dancing
  8. This Kind Of Love
  9. Stormbringer
  10. Soul Searching
Welcome back Tony Martin.
It's been quite a while between drinks for the sometimes solo, sometimes Sabbath front man. This guy has an incredible set of pipes in the traditional hard rock singer vein of Glenn Hughes, John West, Ray Gillen and Dio.
The Cage is a partnership between Martin and Italian 'Yngwie' style guitarist Dario Mollo. This is as heavy as hell and should have all fans of all things Sabbath and Martin falling over themselves to get a copy of this.
Mollo is a fine guitarist - awesome in fact! The riffs are as think and heavy as anything you will hear from Iommi and Malmsteen and the soloing is second to none. This guy should be a star.
The whole album is really well produced, sharp, intense and well mixed. The guitars rule the day, but Martin's vocals are not far behind.
Time To Kill is as fast and intense as anything I have heard this year and songs like Cry Myself To Death and are almost perfect.
Rounding out the band is keyboard legend Don Airey and three other Italians with long names on drums, bass and Backing vocals.
There isn't a lot of room for keys on this totally guitar driven album, but Don gets to shine on tracks like Stormbringer, The Cage/If You Believe and the great ballad Soul Searching.
Another essential ingredient in these Sabbath/Purple/Dio like albums is your traditional Deep Purple cover. This time around Tony Martin does his very best Glenn Hughes vocal on Stormbringer.
In case this is beginning to sound like a total sonic overload, there are some softer moments. If You Believe is a great softer moody track and Infinity is a good mellow rocker.
This Kind Of Love is also wonderfully commercial and straight forward. And of course there is the huge Soul Searching.
This album is filled with the more traditional hard rock melodies, rather than a 90's feel.
But the production and sounds quality are definitely in step with the times.
If you are looking for something heavy and melody filled and some exquisit fast guitar playing, or you just want some screaming good vocals, this is the hard rock album for you!
PRODUCTION: 85%SONGS: 80%VIBE: 81%ATTITUDE: 80%
ESSENTIAL FOR: Tony Martin fans, Rainbow/Sabbath/Purple fans.

b a c k t o i n d e x