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There’s been a lot of hype surrounding BLACK TIDE and it’s for a good reason: finally we a young band performing energetic, kickass old school Heavy / Thrash Metal music the way we grew up hearing it from bands like MEGADETH, METALLICA and OZZY OSBOURNE. If that excites you then read on…

Now when I say a young band, I mean young. Vocalist / guitar Gabriel Garcia was just 10 years when the band formed. He’s all grown up now though, aged 15! Every other member of the band is currently under the age of 20! Garcia is definitely one talented vocalist. He’s got a long list of influences including IRON MAIDEN, TESTAMENT, BLACK LABEL SOCIETY, DEF LEPPARD and OZZY OSBOURNE and it all shows through in his singing and guitar playing. I just keep thinking if the guy is 15 now, imagine what he’ll be like in 10 years from now… bloody awesome I’m sure!

Musically there’s plenty of variety in this album but it’s all in the vein of classic 80s Hard Rock / Heavy Metal with highly polished production making it pretty ear friendly. ‘Show Me The Way’ has a MEGADETH style intro sounding very much inspired by the beginning of ‘Holy Wars… The Punishment Due’ off ‘Rust In Peace’ (1989). Further into the songs and there’s lead solos in the vein of Marty Friedman’s shredding on his ‘Dragons Kiss’ (1988) solo album. BLACK TIDE’s main riff to ‘Black Abyss’ also sounds very MEGADETH this time more in the ‘Youthanasia’ (1994) era. Great track and I think one of my favourites from this album.

I’ve noticed there’s no shortage of big label bands paying homage to their Metal roots at the moment by covering METALLICA (like BULLET FOR MY VALENTINE for example) and BLACK TIDE do the same on their debut with a ripping modern rendition of ‘Hit The Lights’. I don’t think anything could beat the original for me but this cover version is pretty damn impressive and the band has well and truly put their own stamp on it with the solos. In a recent interview BLACK TIDE’s bassist Zachary Sandler told NZRock.com the band is hoping to hear some feedback from METALLICA about the cover.

An enjoyable listen, ‘Light From Above’ is a must for 80s Hard Rock / Heavy Metal fans. It’s also good motivation to dust off a few of the old vinyls and give them a spin!

Review by Dave Borgioli-Jones