REVIEW: CHARRED WALLS OF THE DAMNED – “Creatures Watching Over The Dead”
‘Creatures Watching Over The Dead’ by Charred Walls Of The Damned is power metal with a big fucking capital “POWER”. It is a fantastic display of songwriting and performance that brims with power, elegance, and savage metal arrangements. The band is the brainchild of drummer Richard Christy who is the main songwriter and riff master. Along with Jason Suecofon guitar, Steve DiGiorgio on bass, and Tim “Ripper” Owens on vocals, they have created nine fist clenching metal anthems worthy of tearing through speakers and headphones around the world.
I typically shy away from this genre because while the musicianship is amazing (bordering on the absurd), the vocals always leave me wishing that either Russel Allen (Symphony X) or Stu Block (Iced Earth) were at the helm. This said, Tim “Ripper” Owens owns each and every song on this record. We all know he can deliver ear piercing screams, however it his fantastic range that shines on this album. Listen to the opening track “My Eyes” and you hear him alternating from gritty tenor, graveled lows, and incredible highs. In some cases, he will nail multiple range sweeps in a single lyrical phrase as on “Tear Me Down”. Instead the often weak vocals that accompany much of today’s power metal, Tim’s vocals have the vigor and force of legends such as Dio or Dickinson.
As most metal fans come to expect, the playing on this album is top notch. Jason Suecof is a beast on the guitar. His rhythm playing is tight and accurate. From the supercharged death metal riffs in “The Soulless” to the big power chords of “Living in the Shadow of Yesterday”, Jason’s playing is spot on. Where he excels is in adding articulated single note riffs and dramatic and interesting solos. When you hear his work on “Afterlife” and the second solo in “Tear Me Down”, you experience his adept phrasing and brilliant technique.
Given the known chops of Richard Christy and Steve DiGiorgio, the expectation is to be impressed with them on every song and they deliver in spades. Christy is an expressive and gifted drummer. “Reach Into The Light” offers up a fine example with multiple riff changes kept in perfect time while adding emotive snare, double kick, floor tom, and cymbal work. With DiGiorgio effectively handling lower octave flourishes and adorning each song with fine brush strokes of sound, Steve’s nibble fretwork pops on “As I Catch My Breath” and adds hearty depth to “Lies”.
Charred Walls Of The Damned have crafted a spectacular album of power metal with their release of ‘Creatures Watching Over The Dead’. When you put together remarkable musicians who can write compelling songs filled with potent riffs, spell binding solos, and captivating vocals you get an outstanding album. Let this majestic composition of stalwart metal fill you with the glory and eternal power of heavy music.
Buy Charred Walls Album Here: www.nervegas.com.au/charred-