Thursday, September 20, 2012

Reader Submissions: Heretic: A Time of Crisis

Heretic is yet another band that has not released an album in years but reunited recently and put out some new material on Metal on Metal Records, which is quickly becoming a specialty of theirs.  In this case, Heretic released a reasonably well-regarded, if unfairly forgotten album in 1988 called Breaking Point.  The band broke up thereafter with the singer leaving to join Metal Church and the other band members forming a new group with the former singer of Metal Church.

I was never really familiar with Heretic so this is new to me.  As I understand, this is not really a complete reunion.  The only old members of the band to return for this release is guitarist Brian Korban and vocalist Julian Mendez who was out of the band by the time they released their only album, though he was present for the band's EP.  The other three members are all new to the band though they have done time with a number of other groups.

Heretic is a power/thrash metal band along the lines of groups like Helstar and the aforementioned Metal Church.  The music is melodic, yet aggressive and rooted in the music of Judas Priest and Iron Maiden.  It features powerful, crunchy riffs and fast-paced energetic songs.  Heretic does not waste a whole lot of time setting mood or building up to anything, they are just here to rock.  All of the songs are very straightforward with a fairly simple structure.

This is not a perfect album by any stretch, but it is certainly entertaining.  The vocals can be a little grating at times, but do sound better with repeated listenings.  The other issue is the lack of a real standout track.  All of the songs kind of run together after awhile, not that there are any that are bad, there just is not one track that really grabs the listener's attention.

Heretic is a band that had some promise when they were around the first time.  Hopefully the band is rejuvenated enough to meet some of that promise.

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