Blaze Bayley - The King Of Metal

Blaze Bayley - The King Of Metal

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(CD, Blaze Bayley Recordings, 2012)

It is very puzzling how some die-hard MAIDEN fans still harshly criticize Blaze Bayley for “making” the mistake of joining the British band after Dickinson’s departure. I believe that those know-it-all fans forget the fact that this was a matter between Harris and Dickinson and also the two Bayley fronted albums were mostly composed by the iconic bass player. So, it is plain and simple that Bayley did his best but sadly could not stand the burden and the pressure of all the Dickinson lovers. Personally, I think that those fans are just barking at the wrong door and have already forgotten how IRON MAIDEN are in a downward course when it comes to producing music; but that’s a different story…

So, after the turmoil and the grave lineup changes Blaze Bayley should be considered as a one man-band since there is no steady roster. In fact, Blaze uses different lineups for the touring duties implementing different musicians based on their ancestry. You see, the economical crisis has also affected the music industry and most importantly the bands that now have to think the logistics first before even considering getting in the studio. Based on this new music order Blaze releases “The King Of Metal” having himself behind the sound board (Thomas Zwijsen was a helping hand) and WOLFSBANE’s bandmate Jason Edwards in the mixing duties. Based on this info, the potential buyer should be aware that the album does not feature an over-the-top production with crystal clear sound but at least is more than enough to get the charismatic singer on the road and spread his passion for Metal. In fact the self-titled song is dedicated to the supporting fans and all those leeches of the music market who see the bands and the artists as bank accounts and sales figures. The song is simple and catchy while Blaze sounds pissed but also grateful to his fanbase and to all those last of the Mohicans who are doing more than just downloading an album and have an opinion about it. The decline of the music industry is killing the bands and our music but most of the metalheads still have their heads hidden in the sand.

Blaze continues to impress me and after the extremely good WOLFSBANE album has a tank full of fuel delivering fresh compositions and mostly personal lyrics. Take for example the heavy and groovy “Black Country” that deals with another rough period of his life when he had to return to the factory to make a living. I know that some of you think that this is your reality but please consider the sequence of blows this guy has to deal with. “Dimebag” is an emotional tribute track that obviously talks about Dimebag and how tragically his life was ended upon the stage by a crazy person. Even thought the music is structured around the vocals melodies the guitars are strong and -of course- share some of the MAIDEN twin axe harmonies mentality earning the easy-to-remember and sing along tag. The part where Blaze talks about the tragic incident is truly spine chilling as the British singer pushing his voice to higher pitches. Clearly Blaze (at least for those you can see farther than their nose) is a strong music composer and has an impressive ability to add passion to this studio music (for his live performances there is no question about passion and energy) so, “One More Step” is an audio proof to my saying. The piano based song features more awesome singing with lyrics that most of us can reflect on. And “Fighter” comes as the way to catharsis and as a beacon of light for all of those who wander how can they overcome all the troubles and obstacles life keeps throwing in front them. This track is long in time duration and hence, is epic through the galloping rhythm (yep, again some MAIDEN references) with very good bass work and the sing-along riff interludes. My personal favorite is “Judge Me” with the tempo changes and the in-your-face attitude all of us should have when dealing with persons that know to judge and criticize everyone around apart from the figure they see in the mirror...

Blaze has created a very good album with strong songs musically and lyrically. It is really worth to take some time and read what he has penned down and I am sure you will find song to reflect yourself in. Music is a safe sanctuary not only for the good times but most importantly for the dark ones. Yes, this is not an album to be treated superficially and has to go hand-in-hand with the story behind this charismatic singer/composer. Buy this one through the band’s website and keep supporting music!

“I know that it is difficult if you believe
this life is your life for you to live and make your own
It's time to let yourself believe this life is yours”

P.S.: I’d like to dedicate “Beginning” to those who have lost their way.





01. The King Of Metal
02. Dimebag
03. The Black Country
04. The Rainbow Fades To Black
05. Fate
06. One More Step
07. Fighter
08. Judge Me
09. Difficult
10. Beginning


Blaze Bayley - Vocals
Lehmann - Bass
Claudio Tirincanti - Drums
Andy Neri - Guitars
Thomas Zwijsen - Guitars