I’m selective of the metal bands I review these days, mostly because the best metal albums I’m given to review are for Metal Nation Radio. With the exception of a review I posted a few weeks ago, the last time I was given (as opposed to the major releases I review for my own leisure) a metal album to review was back in the summer, and even that one was the first one I had in a while. Reading back on it I can see I introduced it similarly, which is only a little embarrassing. This time around I’ll be reviewing Saint Diablo‘s ground rumbling Devil Horns and Halos.
Part straight forward heavy metal, part aggressive modern metal, Devil Horns and Halos didn’t take long to impress me. The opening title track was enough to show me there was something a little more to Saint Diablo then what I initially expected. However, it was when I completed the rest of the first three tracks Survive This and Meet My Maker when I was convinced that this is a great metal album. In these three tracks, we hear the destructiveness of their sound as well as the different sides of vocalist Tito Quinones‘s voice.
The best part is that all of these sides of Tito’s voice are different types of aggressive. Even when his voice is at its cleanest, while singing some of the best melodies on Devil Horns and Halos during songs like My Time and Meet My Maker, it doesn’t take long for that voice to turn into. At its harshest moments, Tito can still manage to make his voice sound like nothing I’ve heard before. There are times when I hear some hints of Corey Taylor, but Saint Diablo are far from being a Slipknot wannabe band.
Musically Saint Diablo do some exploring, like the fast punk-like pace that Adios En-Amigos at times has is unlike anything else on Devil Horns and Halos. Though all in all they tend to stay in the comfort zone of a slow to moderately fast pace. What keeps things interesting is the changes heard within songs, like on Trust Me, how the pace doesn’t change much, but the aggression grows more and more.
I don’t mean to draw more comparison to Corey Taylor, but if I had to best describe Saint Diablo‘s sound on Devil Horns and Halos, I would have to say they sound like what many Slipknot fans probably wish Stone Sour (still) sounded like. Saint Diablo draw heavy metal influences, mix in a pinch of alternative metal and add in a ton of aggression to make for a louder and more ballsy sound, putting them in their own league in a genre lead my bands such as Stone Sour and others like Sevendust and Drowning Pool. Devil Horns and Halos is a finer effort than I’ve heard from a lot of the accomplished metal bands of today. With a moderate fan base, I can see this album propelling Saint Diablo closer to becoming an elite metal band.
Thanks for reading!
“Meet My Maker” – This was another tough highlight to pick. Usually when it’s a tough highlight to pick I go with my favourite track, but picking a favourite track also isn’t an easy task here. Instead I go with Meet My Maker because it is a song that mixes the harshest moments with the smoothest moments on Devil Horns and Halos, with aggressive verses reminiscent of Drowning Pool‘s heyday as well as some fine melodies gluing the song together, which I can say about many songs from the album.
8.5 (Out of 10)
|1||Devil Horns and Halos||3:35|
|3||Meet My Maker||3:45|