AXEMASTER – Blessing In The Skies [Remastered]

AXEMASTER - Blessing In The Skies [Remastered]
  • 5/10
    AXEMASTER - Blessing In The Skies [Remastered] - 5/10


Burning Star Records
Release date: January 16, 2007

Total run time: 56:44

User Review
10/10 (1 vote)

Formed in Akron, Ohio back in 1985, Axemaster burst onto the music scene with a straightforward approach to Metal.

While influenced by European heavyweights such as Black Sabbath, Iron Maiden, and Judas Priest, contemporary bands like Mötley Crüe and Slayer also shaped the Axemaster sound.

Originally recorded in 1987, Axemaster recently signed with Burning Star Records to rerelease their classic album Blessing In The Skies. The remastered disc features extra tracks, better sound quality, a music video, and a 12-page booklet with new photos and liner notes.

Undergoing many lineup changes, guitarist Joe Sims has been a constant force behind the Axemaster sound. Today, the original lineup of Sims, Christopher Michael (vocals/guitar), and Brian Henderson (drums) are reunited, ready to resurrect the Axemaster of yesteryear.

Opening with “The Prophecy/Golgotha” and “Blood of the Temple,” the album doesn’t hit its stride until “Rock Forever.” Screeching guitars and melodic guitar solos firmly place Blessing In The Skies in the 1980s Metal scene.

“Without a Trace” is a solid, if dated, track. A highlight is the lengthy guitar solo as the lyrics are somewhat banal and very repetitive.

A real gem on Blessing In The Skies is “The Reaper.” The lyrics are succinct, clear, and brooding and the bass line is straightforward and accompanies the beat nicely.

“Slave To The Blade” is a bit uneven in the fact that the guitar work sounds like Sunset Strip Metal while the lyrics sound out and out Thrash.

Fans of Metal guitar solos will love “The Predator,” a track that really illustrates the talent and creativity of Joe Sims. Bassist Brian Henderson also shines here, but this is Sim’s proudest moment in the spotlight.

Opening with a unique sound, complete with a Middle Eastern vibe, is “Snake Charmer.” Sadly, even with re-mastering, the lyrics are nearly unintelligible once again, leaving the guitar work as the saving grace of the track.

Blessing In The Skies closes with “The Power.” Utilizing studio elements and canned sounds like claps of thunder, band members create a bold and powerful track. A blessing in “The Power” is the ability to hear the high vocals of Christopher Michael. His voice sounds clear and strong, leaving the listener with the wish that the entire album sounded as good as this track. Sadly, there is a downside to “The Power.” Beginning with a toned-down guitar and bass, the song is distinctly Hardcore Metal. When Michael hits the chorus; however, the song somehow morphs into Melodic Metal, which may disappoint those who are looking for a heavier sound.

While remastered, the audio quality of Blessing In The Skies is still on the poor side, greatly detracting from the album as a whole. While Blessing In The Skies is in no way a must own, it’s a still a good glimpse of true 1980s Metal, minus hairspray and eye liner.

Blessing In The Skies (remastered edition)

The Prophecy/Golgotha
Blood Of The Temple
Rock Forever
Without A Trace
Demon Machine
The Reaper
Slave To The Blade
The Predator
Heretical Valor
Snake Charmer
The Power


  • Allyson B. Crawford

    Allyson was a reviewer here at Metal Express Radio, based out of Kettering, Ohio, USA. She works as a journalist at a local television station, and has a Graduate Degree in Rhetoric and an Undergraduate Degree in English with an emphasis on British Literature. She also owns and operates, a website dedicated to the Glam Metal movement. Her first Glam tape was Poison’s Open Up and Say … Ahh! She got the cassette for Christmas when she was in fourth grade. Her passion lies somewhere between the bars and notes that created the soundtrack to the never ending Rock 'n' Roll party that was the '80s. She considers Aerosmith's Rocks and Mötley Crüe's Shout At The Devil her all-time favorite albums.

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