Wildestarr- A Tell Tale Heart

By Chris Dahlberg

Published on Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Wildestarr debuted with Arrival back in 2009, and while the band may have been a newcomer guitarist/bassist brought his experience from Chastain, Laaz Rockit, and Vicious Rumors alongside singer London Wilde to create high flying power/heavy metal. Three years later the band returned with A Tell Tale Heart, and they have upped the intensity of their arrangements even more. However, the songs lose some of their momentum when they attempt to head into mellower territory and this is still one area that could use a bit more work.

A Tell Tale Heart starts off in the strongest way possible, as “Immortal” flies out of the gate with a fast paced, hard rocking guitar lead that will instantly leave an impression on listeners. This is the type of heavy/power metal that I tend to like the most, as its energy and catchy hooks work incredibly well and have real staying power. Listeners will find that there are a number of other tracks on the album that follow the lead of “Immortal” and opt for high energy instrumentals and this is when Wildestarr is really at their best. Even some of the mid-tempo arrangements are able to maintain this level of energy and put together some catchy hooks that seamlessly blend power and heavy metal together, but there are a few too many numbers where they go for much slower tempos. These aren’t quite ballads, but on the slower pieces the guitar work feels a bit too generic and loses too much of its momentum. It’s clear that Dave Starr is a great musician, but his standout moments occur when the band lets loose and goes full speed and he isn’t able to hit that same level on the slower tracks.

It seemed like London Wilde really came out of nowhere in 2009, and if this is your first time hearing her vocals you’ll be impressed by the amount of range she possesses. Like many of the classic heavy metal singers, Wilde has a command of a wide range of pitches that often start off at a mid-range and head into soaring falsettos. She is able to hit all of these pitches with relative ease, and the power of her performance helps to propel a lot of Wildestarr’s tracks into the spotlight. The lyrics are based around the work of Edgar Allen Poe and pull everything together into a concept album, and while this may not be that unusual of a reference for heavy metal the band does it justice.

Certain songs on A Tell Tale Heart really grabbed me more than others, but the strength of the faster, high flying riffs makes Wildestarr’s sophomore effort worth returning to. The instrumentals could still use a bit of a boost when they go for slower arrangements, as they tend to fall into generic passages when this occurs but the band as a whole is on the right track. Still consider checking this one out if you can’t get enough power/heavy metal, and expect this group to continue rising up the ranks if they stay on this path and further improve their writing ability.


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