Album Reviews

Atkins/May Project – Serpent’s Kiss Review

Released by: Gonzo Media Group

Release Date: Out Now!!!

Genre: Heavy Metal





1.The Shallowing

2.Traitors Hand

3.Dream Maker

4.Can You Hear Me?



7. Judge

8.Betta Than Twisted

9.Cold Gin (cover de KISS)

10.Theatre of Fools


This  release was a pleasant surprise to my ears. Why you may ask? Well to hear the vocal legend Al Atkins who will forever be linked to Judas Priest, alongside fellow Birmingham musicians K.K. Downing, Ian Hill and John Ellis, recounting the early Priest days  before Priest was a band they we’re in a band called Freight at the time, but Atkins decided to name the band Judas Priest since he owned the rights to that name. Unfortunately his stint with Priest was short lived as he left the band in 1973 to be replaced by Rob Halford. Although following different paths then Priest did, Atkins build a solid solo career through the 90’s as well as recording in his own band Holy Rage.

This peculiar release has his talents now at age 64, teaming up with guitar talent Paul May who’s an expert session guitar player known for his stylish solos and razor sharp guitar playing. He has appeared on over 50 albums in his career. “Serpents Kiss is the first album top come from the duo and is a mix of traditional heavy metal and a somewhat new direction for Al. This was an unexpected combination of flash meets veteran cagy metal voice of Atkins, who’s credited for such Judas Priest classics like “Dreamer Deceiver” and “Victim of Changes”.

The first thing you notice on Serpent’s Kiss is the aggressive Heavy Metal style with May’s signature guitar virtuoso styling. We get a little of this tag team duo action on the killer track “Dreamaker”, where May shreds with ear shattering menace, and Atkins lays down some early Priest material mimics in his vocals, which still sound pretty frigging well maintained. The more modern metal rhythm of “Can You Hear Me” has Al kicking into high gear whilst the song itself is sustained by more maniacal guitar soloing by May. The progressive chunky elements in “Signz” adds a nice layer of progressiveness in the track itself, making it a prime cut on the album. The cover of Kiss’s “Cold Gin” is performed and revered with a nice chunky guitar riff that makes it a formidable cover.

What a shocker of an album, totally came out of left field here and not expected to be of this high quality. Al Atkins has done it the right way here, teaming up with a young guitar axeman and more then capable songwriter which both deliver some punishing metal for the new and old generation of fans. Paul May fresh and cunning guitar solos rejuvenates the hell out of Atkins, who at his age still sings his ass off. I suppose they could of just recorded some mild metal songs just for the hell of it, but with May clearly proving he has the chops to throw it down with the best of them and clearly sustaining this record from top to bottom, and with a legendary vocalist like Atkins at the helm, you have a strong offering for all the metal world to behold with more then enough credible musicianship for new fans to discover.


Written by Denys

Ratings    Denys    8/10



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2 thoughts on “Atkins/May Project – Serpent’s Kiss Review

  1. Denys, you are incorrect in saying that this is May and Atkins first appearance together. Both of them played on Al Atkins 2003 solo CD ‘Heavy Thoughts’, released on UK label Market Square Records.

    1. Thanks I was not aware that they had collaborated before, and it was not stated in any press release I saw for this album. Thanks for the factoid. Cheers


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