Fifth Angel

Fifth Angel

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This analogy may be a tad obscure for most people to grasp (but then again, maybe not if you've made it this far), but in terms of mid-'80s Seattle metal terms, one could say that Fifth Angel was the Saxon to Queensrÿche's Iron Maiden. It's a stretch, but, like Queensrÿche, Fifth Angel delved in classic metal deeply steeped in the New Wave of British Heavy Metal style. And, on this, their eponymous release (confusingly reissued by Epic almost two years later), the band boasted admirable technical chops while wheeling out solid metal anthems like "In the Fallout" (sounding like a Saxon outtake, but a good one at that), "Fifth Angel," and the majestic "Wings of Destiny." Unlike Queensrÿche, however, they never had a chance to develop their sound, despite showing a keen eye for the commercial metal conventions of the time (see their pretty outfits and well-sculpted hair). Still, for fans of American-made classic metal, this remains an important work worth seeking out.

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