Distant Thunder - Welcome The End

11 songs
46:46 minutes
***** ***


Distant Thunder is the new band by James Rivera, former singer of late Eighties power metal legend Helstar that released such great albums as Nosferatu (1990) or Distant Thunder (1989). Not only the band name reminds of James Rivera's golden past. The ugly drawn cover art work and the pentagram in the band logo are further indications of his previous works. After the split-up of Helstar, James Rivera published two excellent issues with his band Destiny's End between 1998 and 2001, and now three years later, he seems to be ready for another comeback. The CD was recorded at Spyder Studio in Houston Texas and was produced by Rivera's bandmate Jack Frost. The lineup of Distant Thunder also includes Symphony X bassist Mike LePond, Z-LOT-Z's guitar team, Gregg Gill and Eric Halpern (also former Helstar and Destiny's End guitarist), and Rick Ward on drums. In addition to nine originals, the CD also includes a 2004 version of Helstar's Run with the Pack and Accept's Restless and Wild. If you were fond of what James Rivera did in the past, you should also like Distant Thunder although it doesn't reach exactly the same high level as Destiny's End and especially Helstar. But James Rivera still shows that he's an excellent vocalist for higher registers and the song writing is sounding authentically retro. This record may be recommended to everyone who searches a trip back in the glorious days of US metal.

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