Heavy Mental

Mistress are a female fronted heavy metal band from the USA formed in 2002. After numerous changes, the line up stabilised in 2009 and their debut album was released in 2011. This follow up album was released in 2013.    
Mistress are back with a second album that promises to deliver much more, and if the opening rattle of 'Hell Hole' is a measure, then this album has been worth the wait. Rumbling along like a speeding train, it is classic tinged with speed metal and a superb strong vocal performance. A chugging rhythm greets the listener as '28 Days' drops by and stomps on and on, with automatic head nodding in appreciation. 'Four O'clock Squad' has a slow acoustic style guitar intro with very clear vocals, yet is still a foot tapper and definitely not a head banger.    
'Psycho Bat' is a welcome return to the ball busting, up tempo, high energy, heavy metal that Mistress are famed for. Attitude laden with a blistering rhythm, this is a corker of a song. 'Rage' opens with a huge chunky groove riff and stomps off majestically. Catchy, with a varied vocal performance, the song swings effortlessly from rock to blues to metal and back again. The hard edge chugging rhythm of 'Demon' storms in and mixes short breakdowns with Megadeth style riffing. This is a song that changes style so many times that it loses its identity.     
'Unloved' continues the identity crisis, with soulful vocals and some superb acoustic style guitars, but the music path is leading away from heavy metal into the, well, the unknown. 'Blight Town' tries hard to turn it around, with some rawness and hard edged guitars, and almost succeeds but it still lacks the pace and the punch to fully restore the balance. Thankfully, 'Hard Working Man' picks up the pace and revives the heavy metal element of the album. Up tempo, full of energy and a very strong vocal performance, this is much more like the early part of the album. Closing song 'Drunk And Mad' continues the metal revival with chopping guitars, attitude laden vocals and a thunderous rhythm.    
Overall, a solid slab of rock and metal, let down by a couple of identity crisis songs, but still has plenty on offer.    
Review By Iron Mathew Collins    
Reviewed For Vlad Nowajczyk (Vlad Rocker)    
Review is also featured at All Heavy Metal    
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