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Chastain | The Voice of the Cult

by Justin Gaines
– Senior Columnist/News Editor —

ChastainOriginally released in 1988, The Voice of the Cult was the fourth studio album from Chastain, the band formed by guitar wizard David T. Chastain and featuring powerhouse female vocalist Leather Leone. This was also the second Chastain album in as many years that was released on David T. Chastain’s own Leviathan record label.

David T. Chastain was on fire creatively at that time. He wrote four albums in four years, and all four were high quality metal releases. By the time they got to The Voice of the Cult, the Chastain lineup had great chemistry, knew their craft and was arguably at the top of their game. You could tell right from the start with the powerful, anthemic title track that The Voice of the Cult was a dominating Heavy Metal album. Chastain was in full-on shred mode here, but was counterbalanced by Mike Skimmerhorn and Ken Mary’s (Fifth Angel, House of Lords) heavy, steady rhythms. And of course Leather Leone’s raspy but thundering vocals are a key element of this album’s success.

Aside from the title track, which really is the album’s best song, The Voice of the Cult also boasts some Chastain classics, like the epic “Child of Evermore” and “Soldiers of the Flame” (which so perfectly captured the American Heavy/Power Metal sound in 1988) and the intense (lyrically and musically) “Evil for Evil.”

The Voice of the Cult remains an essential Chastain album, and is another fantastic example of the “shred guitar” sound of that era. It’s definitely an album that fans of Racer X, Yngwie Malmsteen and Apocrypha will love, but beyond the guitar heroics, this is an album that fans of early Metal Church, Vicious Rumors, Zed Yago, Warlock and even early Savatage should check out.

Edition Notes: The Voice of the Cult has been reissued a couple of times before, but much like they did with their reissue of For Those Who Dare a few years back, the folks at Divebomb really treated the album right. The album was newly remastered from the original album mixes, and sounds absolutely incredible. It also features a pair of instrumental versions as bonus tracks, and liner notes that are just loaded with lyrics, vintage photos and a new interview with Chastain and Leone. Even if you already own a copy of The Voice of the Cult, this makes for a worthwhile upgrade. It’s limited to 1000 copies though, and won’t be available digitally.

Genre: Heavy Metal

David T. Chastain (g)
Leather Leone (v)
Ken Mary (d)
Mike Skimmerhorn (b)

Track Listing:
1. The Voice of the Cult
2. Live Hard
3. Chains of Love
4. Share Yourself With Me
5. Fortune Teller
6. Child of Evermore
7. Soldiers of the Flame
8. Evil for Evil
9. Take Me Home
10. The Voice of the Cult (instrumental)
11. Evil for Evil (instrumental)

Label: Divebomb Records


Hardrock Haven Rating: 8.5/10