HOLY GRAIL – Ride The Void

HOLY GRAIL - Ride The Void
  • 9/10
    HOLY GRAIL - Ride The Void - 9/10


Prosthetic Records
Release date: January 22, 2013

User Review
0/10 (0 votes)

The band name Holy Grail on the surface may seem a little cliché and gimmicky. It invokes imagery of a Power and Progressive Metal recipe that is inspired by fiction and fantasy. In all actuality, however, Holy Grail may be one of the most multi-faceted and commanding bands out there today. This quintet hailing from Southern California puts everything on the table delivering blistering doses of Power, Thrash, Progressive, Speed, Doom, Shred, and NWOBHM styles of Metal . There is no doubt this is one band that could easily have the proverbial torch passed on to them as they become synonymous with the next generation of Heavy Metal.

Holy Grail’s origins date back to 2008 when vocalist James Paul Luna and drummer Tyler Meahl from the band White Wizzard teamed up with guitarist Eli Santana to form a band called Sorcerer. Soon Sorcerer became Holy Grail and quickly became an unstoppable force on the Southern California Metal scene. They released their debut album Crisis In Utopia in 2010, which was immediately praised by many critics. Their new release Ride The Void takes all of the rawness and naivety from their first album to advance beyond scope by creating a near masterpiece of Metal.

Holy Grail is all about force. The twin guitars produce hard and fast speed metal riffs, and vocalist Luna delivers an aggressive and strident performance throughout the entire album. From the opening track “Bestia Triumphans” the music just kicks you in the ass and then some. It’s power personified as there are many classic influences detected on each track. Maiden, Priest, Malmsteen, The Offspring, Diamond Head, and Lamb Of God just to name a few. Ride The Void is a true cornucopia of Metal that is completely unprecedented.

If there is a downside of Holy Grail, it could be their own excess. Because there is so much activity going on during each track, it becomes easy to get lost thematically. There are many ideas hitting the listener from every direction, creating moments when it just becomes too much. Additionally, the production value is not outstanding. The vocals are heavily drowned out by the scorching guitars, and the full effect of Luna’s theatrical performances become difficult to gain full appreciation.

Despite the technical shortcomings, most of the compositions on Ride The Void are sheer brilliance. The title track “Ride The Void” is one of the most infectious songs with a very strong melody. Other great tracks that follow that similar vein are “Sleep Of Virtue” and “Dark Passenger” where the listener is allowed to receive a full appreciation of Luna’s influential and dramatic vocal ability.

Holy Grail is the real deal when it comes to persuasive and dominant Heavy Metal. This album is set to become an instant hit that will cross many genres. Ride The Void has all the elements of a classic Metal performance that could easily spawn into greatness.


  • Sean Meloy

    Sean Meloy was a reviewer, interviewer and DJ here at Metal Express Radio, based out of Iowa , USA. By day he is a straight laced, buttoned up, number crunching accountant; armed with his portable calculator. All other times he is a hard rocking Metal head! He spent many hours listening to records and 8-tracks with his father. Classic bands such as Deep Purple, Pink Floyd, Kansas, Led Zeppelin, and Eric Clapton just to name a few. His father bought him his first record, Kiss Alive II, at age 6. By the time he reached his teens he was discovering all the Classic Metal of the 1980’s; Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Twisted Sister, etc. He became a huge fan of the Thrash Metal of the time as well; Metallica, Megadeth, Anthrax, Exodus, and Overkill. During the 1990’s he experimented with the Grunge and Hard Rock. However, by the time the millennium came he found himself going back to his roots and rebuilt the music collection he started in his teens.

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