CAGE – Darker Than Black

CAGE - Darker Than Black


Fugitive Records
Release date: April 22, 2003

User Review
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“We have discovered that an all encompassing substance called Dark Matter threatens our very existence. Is this mysterious energy the true source of evil?” Cage’s new CD begins with this testament, which starts you on a bleak journey that is called Darker Than Black.

San Diego based METAL band Cage have been receiving rave reviews for their new release. As they say in their press release, they are trying to fill a void that was eviscerated by the “grunge” movement, leaving metal fans with little to look forward to. Instead of joining the bandwagon, or dying, Cage have plundered onward, and released a CD that shrieks “metal!”

“Kill the Devil” has a Wayne-era Metal Church feel, but with more precise musicianship and just blacker than Metal Church ever was. You’ll hear some good vocals, but you won’t understand how good Sean Peck is until you hear “Chupacabra.” When “Chupacabra” starts, you will again think of Metal Church, until suddenly you are listening to Cradle of Filth. What? Yeah, you got it. Peck’s voice is pure insanity in this song, and with his banshee-like wailing of the song’s title during the chorus, you’ll wonder where the hell else can this band take you. Only down …

While they are heavy, and at times, black metal, you’ll hear traditional metal pieces as well. “Blood of the Innocent,” could be an Iron Maiden or newer Judas Priest tune. Peck’s vocals are toned down more here, but still strong. And when you get to the 10th track, “Wings of Destruction,” you’ll hear their one melodic construction, an eerie, morose beginning that turns into a classic metal piece, really cranking up the pace. This song shows their versatility, but you know they prefer playing the heavier stuff.

“Antimatter,” is a vast change from the CD so far, with Peck yelling out the beginning and then singing in a lower range, with a smooth voice. But he’s pissed off here, with lyrics like, “mistakes I made with you will never happen twice … I’m closing you out, I’m shutting you down!” It’s a nice change of pace.

You’ll hear a Sabbath-y grinding on “March of the Cage,” and this must be an incredible song to see live, with a built-in chant-along chorus of, “Marching forever we go, but we want to go higher. Follow us straight down the road and into the fire.”

The only song that you may question is the song “Forces of Freedom.” It starts with a somewhat cheesy guitar playing “God Bless America.” Again, this is an American metal band lashing out or throwing the gauntlet down to 9/11, to those who would want America done harm. But, the song works in that aspect; if you are an American, it’ll give you chills. And why the hell not.

The new Cage CD does everything it set out to do. It’s unchained, it’s desolate, it’s pure heavy metal as it should be played … and it’s darker than black.

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