An over the top album launch at Manchester Rebellion club for The First Chapter, the debut album from Bury based metallers Vice resulted in this review. They like to write long songs riddled with over the top guitar solos from Tom Atkinson and Jack Trelawny with Connor Summers smashing the shit out of his drums so of course I was hooked immediately as the crushing intro to ‘Wrath’ surged out of my speakers into drum driven pounding metal. The anger filled lead vocals from Tom set the tone for the album opener as churning riffs engulf and the adrenaline rush twin leads are air guitar heaven!
There is no let up as the hypnotic early time changes in ‘Gluttony’ give way to a grinding mid paced thrash groove. The guitars build up an impenetrable barrier as they duel in the two minute outro. The pace is brought down for ‘Pride’ as melodic guitar fills weave around another clubbing drum assault that pins down a churning main riff. Once again, warp speed guitar solos provide a fitting climax. ‘Sloth’ goes straight for the jugular with twin guitar fuelled intense riffing and rib rattling kick drums as it settles into a laid back groove to match the song title. A clean, melodic lead vocal adds to the mood.
‘Lust’, my album highlight is an eleven minute instrumental epic that took four repeat plays to get my head around. Every box is ticked and my attention never wavered from start to finish as it rises and falls on an emotional roller coaster ride. Mosh pit opening riffs surge into ‘Greed’ as it morphs into driving thrash. Connor picks up the pace as killer lead breaks go into overdrive. ‘Envy’, a fine example of power metal is highlighted by some stunning musicianship as every beat and riff sets the bar high. A powerful lead vocal and a riff laden mid section heavies up to a finger blistering guitar solo shoot out. ‘Web Of Iniquity’ is a majestic album closer as the abrasive opening riffs rev up to wrecking ball heaviness levels. The outro guitar solos flew around my headphones like hyperactive bees!
The album is based on the seven deadly sins and the cover and liner photos feature some stunning artwork by Andy Pilkington along with the song lyrics which confirms that we all need a bit of vice in our lives!
Album track listing : –
VIII. Web Of Iniquity.
Vice band line up :-
Tom Atkinson – Guitars/lead vocals.
Jack Trelawny – Guitars/backing vocals.
Connor Summers – Drums/backing vocals.