You may already be acquainted, but New Wave of British Heavy Metal, meet Satan. Satan, New Wave of British Heavy Metal. Now we’ve got our introductions out of the way, would anyone care for a drink? Lucifer’s Chalice sound like a red wine kind of band. The Pact is their debut full-length record, which was actually released back in February as a digital-only product, but has since seen a physical release under Shadow Kingdom Records. Imagine early Iron Maiden crossed with whatever it is the Goth kids listen to in South Park and you’ve got Lucifer’s Chalice’s sound.
Throughout the four tracks, there are plenty of galloping riffs, driven bass lines and choruses that wouldn’t sound out of place in the 1970s British heavy metal scene, but there’s something missing here. They don’t have a Rob Halford, Ozzy Osbourne or Bruce Dickinson on the mic. Indeed, the entire record is sadly ruined by the lack of a quality front man. Each track is decent, but I just couldn’t get on with the vocal delivery. You may enjoy the vocals more, but to me it sounds constantly out of tune and slightly at odds with the rest of the music.
Thankfully, the New Wave of British Heavy Metal sound here is delivered well. There are plenty of galloping drums and tasty riffs to enjoy, but it does, unfortunately, all roll into one. There’s little to separate the four tracks from each other aside from the lyrics. “Hung at the Crossroads” for example is a track all about murder, that night in 1683. “Full Moon Nights” is a little thrashier than the rest and “Priestess of Death” is a little heavier, but that’s about as detailed as the differences get. It’s a well-produced album, however. Everything carries the right amount of power for something that is channelling the NWOBHM.
The Pact is hugely reminiscent of the era that brought us the likes of Judas Priest and Iron Maiden, but doesn’t offer anything of an improvement on that formula. You’ll have a better time listening to the classics that Lucifer’s Chalice are trying to emulate. There’s passion here, backed up by solid music and good production, but it lacks the presence of a quality front man to have the impact it should. You can imagine that a few of the kids “in the know” might have worn a Lucifer’s Chalice patch back in the day, though, and that probably counts as a win for the band.
The Pact Track Listing:
01. Hung at the Crossroads
02. The Pact
03. Full Moon Nights
04. Priestess of Death
Run Time: 36:23
Release Date: September 29, 2017
Should you dare, stream the entire The Pact album