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Metal/Prog Metal CD Reviews

Scarlet Anger

Freak Show

Review by Gary Hill

I have to say that the form of extreme metal we get with this set isn’t usually my type of thing. Here, though, it works. The vocals can be understood well enough to make out the lyrics. The music is packed with skill and style. Those things help me to enjoy this set. This is mostly brutal and ferocious. It’s also very cool.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2016  Volume 3 at

Track by Track Review
Awakening of the Elder God

The music on this is powerhouse metal. It’s quite technical, but manages to have some real feeling to it. The vocals are more extreme metal in nature, but the lyrics can be understood. This is lyrically based on H.P. Lovecraft.

Attack of the Insidious Invader
I love the frantic riffing that opens this. The song is in the same basic musical territory as the opener, but in some ways I think I like the structures of this one better. It has some really dramatic moments. It’s also quite fierce.
The Haunted Place-House of Lost Souls
Starting with some rather creepy stuff, this screams out into some scorching hot metal. I love the back and forth on the vocals. The whole piece is one of the most interesting here. It’s one of the longer pieces, too.
Welcome to the Freak Show
This has some cool stuff. I like some of the more melodic metal moments, but when it shifts to more brutal stuff it works well, too. The contrast is great, really.
The Abominable Master Gruesome
The instrumental section, with its galloping sound, is among the best musical passages of the disc. It’s just so intoxicating and inspiring. Beyond that, this song is a strong one, but not anything all that different from the rest. Still, with that intense instrumental movement, it’s well worth the experience.
Through the Eyes of the Sufferer
This is another fierce metal stomper. It’s nothing all that different from the rest, but when it is this brutal, that isn’t really a big deal.
The Thing Without a Name
If anything this is more furious and brutal than anything so far. It’s just so intense. Yet there is a cool melodic, somewhat mellower section mid-track that makes a nice contrast. This song is the most dramatic cut here in a lot of ways. I love the guitar soloing on this, too. It does get a parental advisory on the lyrics, but this might be my favorite tune here.
On the Road to Salvation
Brutal and furious, this might not be a big change, but it stomps like crazy.
The Unbelievable Story of a Stupid Boy
Now, this song is a big change. It’s almost a power ballad, in that it’s mellower sections punctuated by heavier stuff. It’s a bit too raw to really call a power ballad, though. It’s also one of the highlights of the set for sure.
Deadly Red Riding Hood
The main song is in the same mode as the rest of the album. There’s a cool dramatic movement mid-track, though that’s pretty awesome. The guitar riffs are meaty. A weird dropped back movement later brings a bit of a creepy element, too. The mellow section at the end is classy, as well.
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