Album Reviews

PowerTribe – Prepare for Battle Review

Release date: Out Soon

Genre: Heavy Metal

Links: Facebook  , powertribeband.com

 

Lineup:

Missy Percifield: Vocals, Bass, Keyboards

Darren Stroud: Guitar

John Chominsky: Drums

 

Track Listing:

1. The Living Envy the Dead

2. Invisible

3. Flight of the Enochians

4. Prepare for Battle

5. Kill Feed Sleep Repeat

6. I Am Here Alive

7. Burn the Fear

8. Arise

9. Machine Gun Opus

10. PowerTribe

 

My reviews tend to be a flight of idea-ish. Some people dig it, some perhaps not. Sometimes a band will inadvertently stir up a good old-fashioned rant without even being the target of it, per se. This is one of those times. I was really digging the album Prepare For Battle by the band PowerTribe recently when a song came on lamenting the situation America is in right now. Good song (I’ll get to that later,) but it reminded me of something that came to mind recently with the latest Graham Bonnet album: I really don’t like it much when a band gets political. I’m not necessarily talking about bands that are outright political (Rage Against the Machine, Roger Waters, etc.) I’m talking about bands that aren’t really politically driven but are fired up enough about something to create a song about it. I get it- music is revolutionary and reactionary at times, and even artists have their opinions on topics like this too. I’m not really faulting them for doing it, but the side effect is ostracizing some of your listeners. I even feel this way when it comes to bands that sing about the things I believe in too. Music, for me and so many others, is an escape. Escape from the drudgeries of our regular, mundane lives. Escape from the realities that sometimes life sucks. With the 24-hour news cycle sometimes spilling over into my real life with people I deal with on a regular basis, my escape tools are crucial. A random political song will take me right out of my happy place. It’s a catch-22 though, because that shock, that jarring effect is probably the reaction the songwriter wants- to get you fired up. It just fires me down and off my groove. I would never dare tell a band not to follow their heart and not write about stuff that is important to them. Just know that it’s likely going to cause a few people to skip on to the next band. OK, so now that that is out of the way…

PowerTribe, hailing from California, are a cool power trio that is a part Power, part Prog, and all Metal band. With the brilliant guitar of Darren Stroud and the distinct voice of bassist/keyboardist Missy Percifield, they create a whirlwind of sound that is fairly unique, brought to the forefront with the drums of John Chominsky. Percifield has a voice that is operatic to a degree, but with this vibrato that brings to mind Anne Margaret from her role in the Who’s Tommy with a dash of Geoff Tate into the mix, which makes for a very dramatic sound. Songs like “The Living Envy of the Dead,” “Prepare For Battle,” and “PowerTribe” are heavy hitters mixing this aural assault of massive riffs and spectacular leads, thundering drums and bass, and this distinct voice that entrances the listener. The track “I Am Here Alive” is the inspiration of my above rant. They took the basic idea behind the song “America, the Beautiful” and took it down a dark path of imagery of a bleak country. I don’t necessarily disagree with the sentiment, and I think the concept is brilliant, it’s just it gets me thinking about the political outrage and underhandedness of politics in general and makes me sad, thus taking me out of my escape. It’s still a cool song though.

I never know how I am going to feel about an album when I’m checking stuff out to review. I usually just get sent stuff arbitrarily from The Boss and work my way through it all and write what moves me. In this case, I actually reached out to the band myself based on an email from The Boss, which I hardly ever do. I’m glad I did. This was a pretty cool record. In a sea of cookie cutter bands, I work my way through, it’s the ones like PowerTribe and their album Prepare For Battle that catch my ear and give me hope of some creativity for the future.

Written by: Chris Martin

Ratings: 8/10

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