For The Love of Metal by Dee SniderRelease date: July 27, 2018
Label: Napalm Records
For nearly 42 years, Dee Snider has been one of the cornerstones of heavy metal as the front man of Twisted Sister since joining the band in early 1976. With seven studio albums along with the gold and platinum releases of You Can’t Stop Rock and Roll, Stay Hungry, and Come Out and Play back in the 1980s, Snider is the flaming fire that will never ever burn out.
In 1985, he along with Frank Zappa and John Denver testified against censorship by the PMRC (Parents Music Resource Center). Dee stand up towards congress and letting them know according to the Huffington Post blog written by Dee himself in September of 2015 which celebrated the 30th anniversary of that year entitled, 1985 PMRC/Senate Hearings: Then and Now, he said; “I did welcome the opportunity to show the PMRC and the senate subcommittee how you should not judge a book by its heavy-metal cover.”
Not only of the accomplishments that he did and letting congress and Tipper Gore know of what they’re doing is wrong, but he’s also known as a Reality TV star, writing and starring in the 1998 cult horror film, Strangeland, and work alongside with Twisted Sister between Desperado and Widowmaker. And of course appearing on Telergy’s second album, The Legend of Goody Cole. This year, Dee has released a new album released on the Napalm Records label entitled, For the Love of Metal.
This is raw and energetic heavy metal music at its finest. Dee has never backed down without a fight. As I’ve mentioned in my introduction, Snider himself is the flaming fire, and he’s growing that fire rapidly and ready to raise hell. The genesis of his new album started with some inspirations. According to his video announcement he did in May of this year, Jamey Jasta who’s known as a host for MTV’s Headbanger’s Ball from 2003 to 2007, vocalists for both Hatebreed and sludge metal band, Kingdom of Sorrow, was inspired by Dee himself.
Jamey had Dee on his podcast and he challenged him to make a true metal album. His voice and everything to make it a hard record. And Dee himself took the challenge for Jamey’s belief. And that is what For the Love of Metal is about. It is Dee going back to his roots that goes beyond Twisted Sister. He’s letting the listeners know “Listen, I’m more than just a front man. I’m more than just the songs of ‘We’re Not Gonna Take It’, ‘Under the Blade’, ‘You Can’t Stop Rock ‘n’ Roll’, and ‘I Wanna Rock’. Let me show you the big giant piece of the puzzle of the real metal sound.”
And with help from Arch Enemy’s Alissa White-Gluz, Killswitch’s Howard Jones, Charlie and Nicky Bellmore on guitar and drums, Armageddon’s Joey Concepcion, and bassist Tanya O’Callaghan, they’re not just band members to be a part of Dee’s new album, but they are a family of metal and lending Dee a helping hand. The late great Robin Williams once said, “You’re only given a little spark of madness. You musn’t lose it.” And Dee himself hasn’t lost that spark.
The six centerpieces on For the Love of Metal shows Dee’s appreciation and bringing the cannon’s to explode at any second. From the rumbling and machine gun drums and guitars between the Bellmore brothers on ‘Lies are a Business’, Dee comes out like a snarling beast that has broken the chains off and ready to attack. It starts off the album with a bigger bang. You can the aspects between early Metallica and Iron Maiden thrown into the mix.
Charlie’s dooming bass and guitar riffs on ‘Tomorrow’s No Concern’ kicks the door down with a battering ram as Dee sings “All we got is the now/I want to bring you along/So many years/So many stuck behind/But we can right what’s wrong.” What Dee is describing in the song is for the listener to come along for this roller-coaster ride to see where the song will move for years and years to come.
I hope the song will become a live favourite one day when he performs at some of the metal and rock festivals and give the audience to sing-along and head-bang to the powder keg that is ready to erupt at any second. ‘Roll Over You’ is an intensive song on the people that you trusted would suddenly twist the knife and betray you behind your back.
From the rumbling guitar riffs and rhythm by Charlie himself, he still has more ammunition than ever to bring the rapid firing while ‘I’m Ready’ goes back to the ‘80s thrash metal sounding with some crosses between Master of Puppets-era and Budgie’s Never Turn Your Back on a Friend. Joey Concepcion and Charlie do this duel as they take turns on their improvisational solo. Not only the two guitarists are brilliant together on here, but Nicky brings the drums into overdrive.
‘Mask’ is a heavier composition dealing with the people you admired growing up or part of your childhood, would wear this disguise to hide either the sadness or their dark side they wouldn’t show to the public, but only behind closed doors to show how much skeletons they have in the closet. ‘Dead Hearts (Love Thy Enemy)’ begins with a flamenco guitar intro for the first minute and 25 seconds sung by Arch Enemy’s Alissa White-Gluz.
This song tackles the issue on bullying. Alissa’s soothing vocals goes beyond her cookie-monster arrangements. And then Dee bursts the doors down to describe to the victims while they have been pushed too far, this time they’re fighting back and how much the bully had treated them so badly either at school, film, or in the music industry, it is a chance to stand up and fight back. Dee and Alissa worked well together on here, and it’s a great song.
Dee Snider’s For The Love of Metal shows that the mastermind is back with a vengeance. And the new album brings him back as the beast is still reigning terror. And this time, there’s no stopping him of bringing the heavy metal genre back to the forefront and its roots.