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Best Replacement Singer?


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5 hours ago, JonoBlade said:

With Ozzy I sometimes wonder whether the band would have even worked with a better (i.e. more conventional) vocalist. His voice was secondary and didn't overshadow the awesomeness of the riffs. Can you imagine Bruce Dickinson singing for Black Sabbath (too young obviously, but theoretically)? It would have been terrible. 

Like most of our favorite legacy bands whose albums we've heard a thousand times, it's hard to even imagine those first 8 Sabbath records with anyone but Ozzy singing. And even though I'm not a solo Ozzy fan and haven't ever heard any of his solo albums since the first two Blizzard and Diary, I will defend his youthful voice from the Sabbath days when he was in his 20's. He wasn't the best heavy metal singer to ever come down the pike but he sure as hell wasn't the worst, and his voice worked very well with those Iommi riffs. I'd choose listening to Ozzy sing over Dickenson or Halford any day.

The Number of the Beast is not that musically different to Killers. You just prefer the grittier vocals. I do too. It is not that hard to imagine Paul Di'Anno singing Run to the Hills or the title track. They (Steve and Rod) go on about how Bruce brought greater range and capability, but on the musical side he didn't bring anything extra to the table. Di'Anno wrote great songs and lyrics. I think they just liked Bruce because he fit into the world conquering vision better. Frankly, he was more professional and reliable.

I think they've all admitted by now that Paul got shit canned because he was flaky and could be a bit of a dick. I personally consider him a better frontman with a more appealing vocal delivery than Bruce, but I'm aware that's the minority opinion. But yeah Beast and Piece were still reasonably in line with their trademark sound they had established on Killers and they each had their stellar moments like Hallowed and Revelations. I liked those albums well enough at the time 40 years ago (we really only played the A side of PoM and might have only flipped it over just for Troopers every now and then) but it was 1984's Powerslave where they just completely lost me. The first two tracks Aces High & Two Minutes were serviceable if unspectacular, but the rest of that album was fucking terrible. I found it so unpleasant that I never listened to another new Maiden album again after that. Fortunately for me speed metal & thrash & hardcore had come along to save the day by then so I had found a bunch of other bands that were giving me more speed and aggression than I had been getting from Maiden, which is really all I cared about back then so I really didn't need Maiden for anything anymore after '84. Unlike 70's Sabbath I think 80's Maiden could have worked just as well with a lot of different singers. 

For shame, I never even heard Fistful of Metal so I just ordered it off eBay. It completes my vinyl collection of all Big 4 bands' 80s output up to and including 1990 when the quality of all Big 4 bands started to sharply drop off. Also, vinyl itself started to disappear. 

Fistful's not the greatest metal album ever, but imo it's better than any of the other Anthrax records, and it's the only one I ever go back to for a nostalgia hit. I heard Fistful first, then bought the next two albums as they came out. Mostly because they were a fun local NY band to see live back when moshing and stage diving was a new and exciting thing for us. Before about '84 crowds at NY metal shows basically stood there rooted to the floor with their arms crossed. (Punk shows had been more physical for quite awhile) But I didn't continue to follow the band or buy their albums past 1987, because I was already pretty much over it by then. The only Anthrax album I ever bought after the first three was White Noise on cassette because I could hardly find anything on vinyl in 1993. Felt like a comeback album to me at the time because the last one of theirs I had bought had been 6 years earlier. Can't remember the last time I listened to it, looking back over the track list now the only songs I can still remember how they go are Only and Black Lodge the slow song.

You'd hope so. It's metal!

Everyone listens differently. I focus on rythym guitars and riffs when I listen, but for some people the vocalist is what they care about most. I have friends who focus on drums. That's weird to me, I only notice the drums if they're missing, or they're clickety-clackety like a 1960's typewriter, or if the snare sounds like hitting a tin can. I've never really been able to tell the difference between human drummers and programmed drums most of the time, so drums are definitely a secondary or tertiary concern for me. But to each their own. I suppose it's not cool to force our old man guitar-centric view of metal onto everyone else.

 

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16 hours ago, GoatmasterGeneral said:

Everyone listens differently. I focus on rythym guitars and riffs when I listen, but for some people the vocalist is what they care about most. I have friends who focus on drums. That's weird to me, I only notice the drums if they're missing, or they're clickety-clackety like a 1960's typewriter, or if the snare sounds like hitting a tin can. I've never really been able to tell the difference between human drummers and programmed drums most of the time, so drums are definitely a secondary or tertiary concern for me. But to each their own. I suppose it's not cool to force our old man guitar-centric view of metal onto everyone else.

Metal is guitar driven so its fairly natural to focus on that. Vocals are important in that they are an obviously up front thing and it's true enough that if they are really annoying then it can be a liability....but quite a few frontmen are, on first impression, "annoying." It gives them a uniqueness. I am pretty sure I didn't like Ozzy upon first listen and death metal vocals seemed like a joke. But then it beds down in your brain and you "get" it after a while. 

It was a sad day when I found out that all Type O albums with Johnny Kelly had programmed drums until the last one. In truth I had not noticed but when it was pointed out it did affect my enjoyment. Just seems so pointless for a signed band. That really is cutting corners on production. Fine if the songs are done to a click track/programmed drums, but replace them with real ones for Pete's sake. I wonder if many Type O albums were produced from demo/home recordings of guitar/bass with maybe just the vocals re-recorded professionally.

Favourite go-to drum performance is probably Justifiable Homicide by Dying Fetus.  So, depending on band and genre I can get quite a bit of a kick from drums. These days I often listen for the bass and if it is doing anything interesting. Bass was traditionally quite underproduced in metal but you sure notice if it is not there.

 

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2 hours ago, JonoBlade said:

Metal is guitar driven so its fairly natural to focus on that. Vocals are important in that they are an obviously up front thing and it's true enough that if they are really annoying then it can be a liability....but quite a few frontmen are, on first impression, "annoying." It gives them a uniqueness. I am pretty sure I didn't like Ozzy upon first listen and death metal vocals seemed like a joke. But then it beds down in your brain and you "get" it after a while. 

It was a sad day when I found out that all Type O albums with Johnny Kelly had programmed drums until the last one. In truth I had not noticed but when it was pointed out it did affect my enjoyment. Just seems so pointless for a signed band. That really is cutting corners on production. Fine if the songs are done to a click track/programmed drums, but replace them with real ones for Pete's sake. I wonder if many Type O albums were produced from demo/home recordings of guitar/bass with maybe just the vocals re-recorded professionally.

Favourite go-to drum performance is probably Justifiable Homicide by Dying Fetus.  So, depending on band and genre I can get quite a bit of a kick from drums. These days I often listen for the bass and if it is doing anything interesting. Bass was traditionally quite underproduced in metal but you sure notice if it is not there.

 

Yeah a cool bass line is always a plus, but with busy black metal and other wall of noise sub-genres I'm generally just happy if there's some bottom end and the low frequencies are represented.

Ask me for a favorite drum performance and I'd be at a loss, drums just sound like drums to me. Unless someone's really fucking up and can't play in time or something really egregious then all drums basically sound alike to me. I'm more interested in the individual drum sounds than the virtuosity of the drummer.

As far as Type O's programmed drums I think you're discounting the skill involved in programming them. It's a different skill than playing a kit, but still an acquired skill. And since he fools so many of us into not realizing there aren't "real" drums on the albums, I reckon he must be pretty good at it. I know they've said Josh Silver who served as both their keyboard player and producer had a rudimentary home studio set up where they'd record ideas and stuff but the actual album tracking for all their albums was done in a professional studio called Systems 2 in Brooklyn.

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On 9/21/2022 at 6:11 PM, GoatmasterGeneral said:

Fistful's not the greatest metal album ever, but imo it's better than any of the other Anthrax records, and it's the only one I ever go back to for a nostalgia hit. I heard Fistful first, then bought the next two albums as they came out. Mostly because they were a fun local NY band to see live back when moshing and stage diving was a new and exciting thing for us. Before about '84 crowds at NY metal shows basically stood there rooted to the floor with their arms crossed. (Punk shows had been more physical for quite awhile) But I didn't continue to follow the band or buy their albums past 1987, because I was already pretty much over it by then. 

Got Fistful of Metal the other day. It sounded cool except the ill-advised Alice Cooper cover. I reckon Spreading the Disease is better and heavier though. I never even knew there was a song called "Anthrax". Didn't exactly make it to be the set closing classic at every show like Iron Maiden. Most songs sound like they were written after listening to Kill Em All a hundred times, but full marks for youthful enthusiasm and fun.

Turbin's vocals remind me of a budget Eric Adams from Manowar. Interestingly, the producer of Fistful was an early drummer for Manowar. 

Will be listening again and glad to complete my collection of 1983-1990 LPs for all the big four.

I was in a charity shop dropping some stuff off on Saturday and saw Dio "Sacred Heart" LP for £5. Bargain I thought. But I haven't even listened to the whole thing yet it was so cheesy.....

I am afraid I just don't like Dio, the band, material much. Holy Diver has a few good songs but the rest is filler, paint by numbers power chord songwriting. Like it is merely a vehicle for his voice. But metal cannot be carried by a voice alone. 

 

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