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Culprit - Guilty As Charged (9/10) - USA - 1993

Genre: Power Metal
Label: Hellion Records
Playing time: 56:34
Band homepage: Culprit

Tracklist:

  1. Guilty As Charged
  2. Ice In The Back
  3. Steel To Blood
  4. I Am
  5. Ambush
  6. Tears Of Repentance
  7. Same To You
  8. Fight Back
  9. Players
  10. Guilty As Charged (Bonus)
  11. Stone Cold Crazy (Bonus)
  12. Fight Back (Bonus)
Culprit - Guilty As Charged
Another classic of US Metal that finally has made it to CD (if you generously overlook this unworthy "Reborn Classics"-bootleg of some years ago) thanks to Hellion Records. Just like so many other US-bands that surfaced in the early Eighties, CULPRIT faced the destiny of getting nowhere despite musical subtlety, yet still enjoying absolute cult-status ever since and breaking the ground for upcoming Seattle-bands like HEIR APPARENT or THE MOB (later QUEENSRYCHE).

CULPRIT's first step into the limelight cam in 1982, when they appeared on Mike Varney's legendary compilation-series "US METAL" Vol. II. Next to well-known bands like EXCITER, VIRGIN STEELE, WILD DOGS or VIXEN, CULPRIT presented their first representative offering in the melodic "Players", which was clearly influenced by England's NWoBHM-heroes JUDAS PRIEST and IRON MAIDEN and Canada's RUSH. 1983 followed the first (and only) complete album "Guilty As Charged", which also was released via Shrapnel Records...

...and just that has seen its first official CD-version, completely remastered by Terry Gorle (HEIR APPARENT), enriched with three excellent live-bonus-tracks (Seattle 1998), a richly pictured booklet, new cover-artwork, the complete lyrics and as a special-gimmick a red-coloured CD (looks cool)! Now that's something, eh?

Now a few words on the music: With the awesome title-track "Guilty As Charged", the IRON MAIDEN-esque "Ice In The Back", the two rather complex "Steel To Blood" and "I Am", the chorus-heavy "Ambush" (with some hit-character), the fast "Tears Of Repentance", the varied "Same To You", the earthy rocker "Fight Back" and the brilliant "Players" CULPRIT manage to keep each Metal-fan's spirits high and everybody just has to have heard CULPRIT at least once (if he wants to regard himself as a seasoned Metal-veteran).

I for my part am absolutely psyched and can hardly await the announced live-performance of Jeff L'Heurex (voc), John DeVol (git), Kjartan Kristoffersen (git), Scott Earl (bass) and Bud Burril (dr) at this year's "Wacken Open Air" in Germany.

Send DM 30,-- to Hellion Records.

Charly Kogler



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