METAL MAJESTY – This Is Not A Drill

METAL MAJESTY - This Is Not A Drill


Lion Music
Release date: July 27, 2004

Guitars: B-
Bass: B-
Percussion: B
Keyboards: B-
Vocals: A-
Lyrics: B+
Recording Quality: A-
Originality: C+
Overall Rating: B+

User Review
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One-time childhood prodigy Valensia Clarkson, originally from The Netherlands, has teamed up with his brother, David Clarkson (percussion) to form the “band” Metal Majesty. Metal Majesty have released their debut album entitled This Is Not A Drill. The word “band” is used loosely here, because Valensia plays all of the guitars, keys of various sorts, violins, and sings all of the lead and harmony vocals! To fill time, evidently, Valensia also handled the production of this album and crafted the artwork. Yeah, this guy may have more multi-faceted talents than anyone in the music business … and after a close listen to This Is Not A Drill, you’re bound to agree with this sentiment.


Metal Majesty starts with an impressively accurate musical foundation commensurate with the more aggressive side of the band Queen. Valensia has the Freddie Mercury vocal sound down so well, you’d swear this was a “lost” Queen album of never-before-released material (if you didn’t know any better). The only real differentiation between Valensia and Mercury is that Valensia, though an immensely talented Vocalist, has a slightly detectable non-native-tongue accent to his English singing. Like Queen’s pervasive vocal style, though, Valensia utilizes harmonies and overdubs to the fullest extent possible – and he shoots them at you from every direction abruptly and without warning or logic – similar to what we all heard and loved in songs like “Somebody to Love” and “Killer Queen.”

Equally as impressive to Valensia’s vocal assimilation of Mercury is his production skill to get Metal Majesty’s music to sound so similar to Queen. No one can completely replicate Brian May’s guitar sound (mainly because May used equipment and techniques that are simply not available in today’s day and age), but Valensia comes pretty damn close. Clarkson’s percussion sound has a bit more force and power to it as a result of modern recording advancements (which further adds to the musical enjoyment of this CD), but his playing is clearly right in line with Queen’s style too. Additionally, Queen had a patented recording “anomaly” that made their music very discernable from anything else during their heyday … more specifically, the ability to record certain musical passages at such a high volume that a level of distortion would result, causing the sound to kind of blend together in a very “non-annoying” and phased fashion. This recording practice added a unique power and originality to Queen’s sound, and Metal Majesty replicates this production anomaly to perfection.

Like anything, however, pure copycat practices seldom get any band anywhere, and Metal Majesty has plenty of originality contained with This Is Not A Drill to maintain listeners’ curiosity and attention. For starters, Valensia’s musicianship and ability to include a vast assortment of instruments in skillful fashion is quickly apparent and a nice complement to the band’s “classic” sound. Secondly (and more importantly), the song lyrics, as a whole, are indeed something to ponder, consider, and “decipher,” if you will. In this album, Valensia unveils a morbid, almost “dark side” in his lyrics. He’s not flat out gory or obnoxious, but in most songs he tends to circle around decrepit and/or quasi-necrophilia themes, similar to Alice Cooper in several of his classic songs like “Cold Ethyl” from Welcome To My Nightmare and “Former Lee Warmer” from the DaDa album. Overall, Valensia’s lyrics tend to be voluminous, fast-paced, and a bit complex … to pick up all of his “messages” and themes; listeners definitely need to follow along with the lyrics (included) a few times to get the full effect.


Track #13, “Bulgarian Queen/Symphony in V-Minor,” blatantly uses the musical/lyrical patterns of Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody,” one of the best rock ‘n’ roll songs ever written. Metal Majesty, however, seems intent on essentially creating a parody of this song, and in doing so, comes across as disrespecting a true Queen masterpiece.


This is the best album that Queen never made – the musical complexities, production advancements, and lyrical twists contribute to make This Is Not A Drill that much more interesting. Songs like “License To Chill,” “Rock Nor Roll,” and “The Moon” are simply great songs from start to finish, and the lion’s share of the other songs on this album are more than capable of also holding their own in spite of clearly piggybacking off of the musical accomplishments attained by a notable classic band … the whole time, taking what was always good about Queen’s approach to a new level. In doing so and as a result, This Is Not A Drill is a solid, enjoyable, 70+ minute effort … and a definite keeper!


  • Dan Skiba

    Dan is a former partner at Metal Express Radio, and also served as a reviewer, photographer and interviewer on occasions. Based out of Indianapolis, USA he was first turned on to Hard Rock music in the mid-1970s when he purchased Deep Purple's Machine Head as his first album. He was immediately enthralled with the powerful guitar sound and pronounced drumbeat, and had to get more! His collection quickly expanded to include as many of Heavy Rock bands of the time that he could get his hands on, such as Ted Nugent, Judas Priest, and Black Sabbath, to name just a few.

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