Metal To Infinity

Steel Maid is the new band by ex-Ritual Steel axeman Dirk Johanssen. Speak out this guy’s name, be sure there will be True Heavy Metal lurking from behind. Many years into Metal music – along with his new band Steel Maid, Dirk recruited a few other musicians to complete the line-up… one of them is the well known singer from Boston Thrash Metal act Ravage named Al Firicano. 

Musically wise - have Ravage and Steel Maid something in common? Well, actually no because of the fact Steel Maid has nothing to do with Thrash Metal – on the contrary, the band spoils us with Classic Heavy Metal played real tight and kinda raw. With a frontman originating from the US perhaps you would think that Steel Maid has to offer typical Germany based Classic Heavy Metal with US Metal influences… in my opinion, it doesn’t fully turned out that way actually. Even the fact singer Al Firicano is American, Steel Maid’s trademark is pure as can be old school Heavy Metal provided with a typical German attitude and please – do not underestimate the Metal scene from Deutschland! Since the early eighties, this country brought (and still brings) uncountable great bands delivering the very best in Heavy Metal music! 

We should be grateful to German label Karthago Records who unleashed Steel Maid’s “Raptor” in really good conditions. What I like first of all is the old fashioned sound quality. On that point, my need is fulfilled! As for the 10 tracks on the album – in a few words: Hard, rough and pure METAL! First song ‘Hellraiser’ opens in full glory. Right-in-your-face, hard kicking Heavy Metal with neckbreaking rhythms… headbangers – take a stand already! Next ‘Unbreakable’ brings on some kind of an old Accept character while ‘Metal War’ will please old Judas Priest fans. ‘Die Fast’ comes along and it’s head-slamming time again people! Old Accept fanatics better watch out for ‘Armageddon’ especially for the guitar duties. The title track is an instrumental composition that is really fantastic. Enjoy this more than 7 minutes lasting song with full force – the song structure here is well done and Mr. Dirk Johansen makes his name as great guitarist fully right! Steel Maid slams the door with a second version of ‘The Fallen Angel’ – as an unplugged version this time and it turns out good! 

Globally seen, “Raptor” from Steel Maid is real good effort… as for originality, I will give them a rating which will be not very high. Focussed on the vocals, Al delivers the goods but I think he is made to act better while using his throat in a more Thrash Metal manner. When it comes to the use of higher vocal notes I have the intention that something goes not very well every now and than. Dirk’s leading role as former / guitarist of Steel Maid… well done all over and absolutely no reason to complain at all! Old Priest / Accept and a maybe a litlle bit of Warrior (Fighting The World) or Q5 (Steel The Light) worshippers should check Steel Maid out for sure. Good output made for old school Heavy Metal maniacs in general! Order possibilities via:  

My Points: 83 / 100 (Review by Stefan)