Oh, what is this my auricles graced with? San Diego’s BENEDICTUM play a stomping type of our beloved US Metal with guitars that are thick as hell. A modernly produced powerhouse, somewhere between BLACK SABBATH, SAVATAGE and WARRIOR, is ripping through your ears, but the actual sensation is front warrior Veronica, a dark angel in leather, amazing tits and an absolutely incredible voice. That lady’s definitely Metal!
Just listen to her interpretation of “Heaven And Hell”; any grouch will be muted afterwards. The only question is if putting two BLACK SABBATH covers on a debut album is neccessary. Their own songs are very creepy and dark, chorusses are rather simple. Always pulsing, but vivid nevertheless – they could have integrated some speed songs on it, as after some time, the whole thing becomes somewhat monotonous. Though, some of the songs do absolutely work. My favourites would be “Ashes to Ashes”, a brute steamhammer of a song; with that vocal performance, you even could granite like a piece of butter. Or take “Misogyny” with the nice passage “I’m your backstreet filthy whore – I’m the bitch you can’t ignore, you wish that you could snuff me out with your misogyny” in the chorus. Splendid! But I do like most the eight minute epic smasher, steamrollering everything, as it is that convex and majestic!
To mention some facts: Veronica, the vocalist, and guitarist Pete Wells laid the foundation for BENEDICTUM, after their old band MALADY bit the dust. As soon as all involved musicians had found each other, DIO guitarist Craig Goldy took notice of them. Then, Goldy recommended them to his fellow Jeff Pilson (DOKKEN, DIO), who produced the first demo. Somehow, Locomotive Records took notice of the band as well – the rest is history. (Online March 4, 2006)