Has any old Power Metal fan expected VICIOUS RUMORS would manage to stage a come back? Many had hoped for it, but how many really believed in it? Well, with “Warball” we have their latest effort in our hands and yes, Geoff Thorpe shows us that he still has it in him. Yes, we have the best songs here since “Word Of Mouth” and chisel a big smile onto my face.
With Geoff Thorpe, Larry Howe and Dave Starr we have even three guys from the original line-up and with Thaen Rassmussen (ex ANVIL CHORUS) they have another old veteran of the US Metal scene on board. Additionally Brad Gillis (ex NIGHT RANGER, ex OZZY OSBOURNE) helps out with some guitar solos. With so much power, what could possibly go wrong? Not to forget the vocals: what our old vocal whore James Rivera delivers here is simply divine. Hopefully this line-up will be stable for a few years, because especially James Rivera has the nasty reputation of jumping from band to band. But a new DISTANT THUNDER album would still be nice.
Anyways, this is about VICIOUS RUMORS! If you like intricate melodies, which seem fresh and alive, fast riff attacks, murderous rhythm runs and generally hymnic songs, then you just have to know this CD. And if you also like old, often forgotten IRON MAIDEN classics beyond the big hits, even better. From speedies such as the mightily straight forward “Sonic Rebellion“ over intense groovers like the viscous, stomping “Dying Every Day“ and the brutal, almost Thrashy “Oceans Of Rage“ to the extra terrestrial, a bit SAIGON KICK-like ballad “Windows Of Memory“, the band gives it all. Several guitar elements remind me of Ozzy Osbournes “No Rest For The Wicked“. As old school Metalhead you have to have this.
(Online December 10, 2006)