Hell & Fury

Mystery Blue

Bad news 'bout MYSTERY BLUE's new CD is that they are hardly remembered now by […]
By Grigoris Chronis
March 26, 2010
Mystery Blue - Hell & Fury album cover

Bad news 'bout MYSTERY BLUE's new CD is that they are hardly remembered now by 80s Metal fans while I doubt younger metalheads have ever even come across these name; hence, the "woman singing in Metal band" link shall probably bring to mind bands MYSTERY BLUE has very little - if anything - in common with. But this is the good news.

MYSTERY BLUE - the brainchild of only original member now guitarist "Frenzy" Philippon - was formed in 1982 and had the chance to be a living part of the Heavy Metal revolt in the rest of Europe after Britain rocked hard with the NWOBHM phenomenon. Two stunning albums - "Mystery Blue" (1984) and "Circle Of Shame" (1986) - and a series of full-experience gigs with bands like SAXON, SATAN JOKERS, MOTORHEAD, VENGEANCE and DEF LEPPARD helped the French band approaching a level their youth couldn't possibly control. On hiatus until the mid-90s, the reformed MYSTERY BLUE utilized the female Metal services of steel singer Nathalie and a new era for this honest Metal act begun. Three albums until this brand new "Hell & Fury" CD release show MYSTERY BLUE do breathe and work hard for their band and music showing visible marks of metallic dignity the old-fashioned way plus an adequate level of building up the songs and lyrics they believe so much in.

"Hell & Fury" is an album you cannot digest if not aware/fond of (other than the commercial ones) 80s Metal bands. Strictly Metal ("Nuclear Skies"), nothing less or more, I expand. Riffs straight from the heart ("No Way Out") with accuracy but also fireblazing solos ("Welcome To Chaos") spreading rust ("Metal Attack"), pounding ("Fate") drums/bass parts that have nothing in common with the over-compressed digital cans of today and - in the foreground - the masculine voice of Nathalie whose 'balls' would be a dream-come-true for a lot of 'then & now' singers assuming they kill on sight with shrieking vocals and only. This lady had already impressed me in MYSTERY BLUE's previous album "Claws Of Steel"; she unleashes traditional yet fresh-made melodies but does not fear of the dark in most dark/malicious parts (she may sound pressed and out of tune in a couple of times, though - "The Deadly Nightshade", "Hell & Fury"). The band's music helps her 'diva' role, truth is, since the classic yet hard-line style of PHANTOM BLUE provides to be a trustworthy layer for various vocal expressions.

In something less than 50 minutes "Hell & Fury" showcases a band conscious of their aims regarding musicmaking; they have shimmering Metal melodies ("Piece Of Eternity", "When Time Is Pain") but still believe Metal music should be played mainly fast , loud and proud ("Endangering Species"). This album is - unfortunately - being released in a different era but we classic Metal fans should feel happy half of the album's songs - at least - are still being written. Fans of JUDAS PRIEST/PRIMAL FEAR, MALTEZE, OSTROGOTH, ZED YAGO and SATAN JOKERS/BLASPHEME should shake hands with these beloved French Metal warriors.

8 / 10


"Hell & Fury" Track-listing:
  1. The Night Before
  2. Hell & Fury
  3. Endangering Species
  4. Welcome To Chaos
  5. Metal Attack
  6. No Way Out
  7. Fate
  8. Piece Of Eternity
  9. Nuclear Skies
  10. The Deadly Nightshade
  11. When Time Is Pain
Mystery Blue Lineup:

Nathalie Geyer - Vocals
Frenzy - Guitars
Vince - Drums
Rikki - Bass

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