Altered by Evil

Rockin' Engine

Canada is offering once again a great band for the listening pleasure of metalheads around […]
July 24, 2023
Rockin' Engine - Altered by Evil album cover

Canada is offering once again a great band for the listening pleasure of metalheads around the globe. The band is ROCKIN' ENGINE ( I could not find the reversed letters on my keyboard) from Ottawa. Land of the classics Annihilator and Exciter, the band raises to the traditions of Ottawa musical brutality with melodic interludes blended perfectly in all 6 tunes on their latest release Altered by Evil. An album with very good production from Dark Moon where all instruments can be heard loud and clear (emphasis on the loud). The band expresses their love for horror movies and series with nightmarish lyrics on this album that is their follow up to the also worth checking The Wretched And The Damned 2020, and Midnight Road Rage 2019.

A creepy carnival circus announcement inviting you to a scary ride starts "Carnival of Evil". A classic heavy tune with traces of trash and great guitar solo passages. Steve O Leff's vocals have a good range that cover all aspects of the style proposed. In some parts it gives the impression of a mix of Pantera riffs with a lighter more classic heavy metal vocal. Great attention to melodies with choruses that you can sing. The tempo goes wild in some parts and we have well executed solos by Ste Vy Leff and Steve O Leff's. Solid introduction advising that this may be a great listening experience. Freaks of nature taking all control with undead clowns lurking in the dark sets the horror stage.

"Day Of Wrath" starts with a good riff and a number of tasty tempo changes with a dark desperate slow tempo in the middle of the track. A head banger for sure. Good writing and melodies showing that a great effort and attention to detail was present at the studio. Excellent guitar work throughout. Some keys sprinklered as accents in the end. The song is about judgment day. Only God can judge me for my sins, so... let's sin. Good vocal performance again. Is it better to have a great singer that can play, or a better player that can sing? The band has both.

Bringing the dark choir present in every terror flick, the band presents something different on "Liber Ex-Mortis" . Interesting crazy tempos and the vocal cutting thru mimicking the guitar (or the opposite?). Sudden mood changes and all  the classic traces of a very good  metal tune.  Despite wild tempos, the song flows naturally and connects all different moods perfectly. Riffs are still a highlight with different levels of  brutality being thrown at you.

A clock ticking in your ear and a bumping sound prevents you from sleeping on "Monsters Under Your Bed".  Still another killer tune.  After the great intro we hear another display of testfull tempo changes and different moods going from great melodic heavy metal and back to brutality. A present and good bass riff from JP Buzzard molding the killer double pedal drum work by Joel Bilodeau. The restaurant just works if you have a good kitchen in the background and this band has one. Best song of the album in my opinion, and the one with more to explore musically during your listening. This tune also got a good video on Youtube you should check.

Somebody is watching your every movement and it seems to be a natural born killer! Another eerie introduction with a voice talking inside your head combined with some good introductory riffing, "Psycho Path" is another good written song with interesting flavors and moods everywhere. The band surely puts cohesive tunes that you can enjoy and also the execution is always high quality. Elements of trash, and heavy metal are felt with great guitar work. The vocals are solid and Steve O Leff really has a great range and shows all his techniques throughout the album.

Here comes Johnny! (I would have stuck that knife on his face at the door crack if I was that lady). "Rockin' Engine" (feat. Stef Jomphe - Room 185) has the responsibility of bearing the name of the band and having a guest. It does not disappoint showing the crunchiest riff of the album and to my ears, a delicious sound to listen to. Speed Variations and  a great bass and guitar riff with the drum wall of sound shielding it all. Lead guitar Ste Vy Leff never disappoints with his creative interludes  and you can even hear some guttural vocals in background. The band mixes the softer, more melodic metal parts on the chorus with the crunchiness and neck breaking moments of the heavy parts. To seal the deal for me, the guys also pay homage to a classic dear to my heart, Three Little Pigs from the band Greejelly. Search for it!

A good and creative band from Canada that knows their craft and knows how to mix metal styles in search of a style of their own.

8 / 10









"Altered by Evil" Track-listing:

1. Carnival of Evil
2. Day Of Wrath
3. Liber Ex-Mortis
4. Monsters Under Your Bed
5. Psycho Path
6. Rockin' Engine

Rockin' Engine Lineup:

Ste Vy Leff- Guitar
JP Buzzard- Bass
Joel Bilodeau-Drums
Steve O Leff- Guitar/Vocals

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