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April 15, 2024

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Ghost In The Ruins - A Tribute To Criss Oliva (Nuclear Blast)

By: Jeb Branin

As I understand it, this collection of classic live SAVATunes was originally released in Europe several years ago but is only now being distributed in the USA. I'm glad to see it. The first couple of SAVATAGE records ("Sirens" and "The Dungeons Are Calling") were near and dear to me in the 80s. People seem to forget that before SAVATAGE became one of the leaders of the progressive metal scene they were hailed as forerunners in the thrash metal scene. Odd I know because they were never really thrash, but they were so much heavier and grittier than the standard metal of the day that they fit in the thrash underground better than anywhere else. Well, until that horrendous "Power Of The Night" foray into mediocrity... but we'll ignore that bit of history considering the fact that by the time they unleashed "Hall Of The Mountain King" they were fully back on track. This CD collects gems from the aforementioned albums plus "Gutter Ballet" the thematic album that set the stage for the modern SAVATAGE sound. If you wanna hear SAVATAGE at what I consider to be their finest check this out. If you play it back to back with the new METAL CHURCH live retrospective it is almost like taking a trip back in time because not one single song on either CD was recorded later than 1990.
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