Less than a year old, Edge of Paradise have released their debut album Mask, featuring overly distorted guitars and wailing female vocals in a presentation similar to Ozzy Osbourne’s Scream or The Runaways Queens Of Noise. With no ballads anywhere, it’s a promising album that packs a punch and doesn’t let go until it’s over.
Lead singer Margarita Monet has some decent vocal chops and looks the part. Her style reminds me a bit of The Runaways Cherie Currie, with the ability to add some melody to a raunchy, angry growl. Add to that a sexually provocative look and you have the makings of the first real successor to The Runaways.
Dave Bates has a sound that reminds me a bit of Randy Rhodes, Zack Wylde and any other guitarist Ozzy would add to his band. It’s a bit more classical sounding than the Ozzy group and feels like you’re listening to an album that guitarists will be quoting as an example, as they do with works from Van Halen, Ozzy and Steve Vai – especially the killer track Shredenstien. Bates is so important to the band’s sound that three of the nine tracks are instrumentals.
The album is rounded out with stellar studio performances from veteran bassist Tony Franklin (Blue Murder, The Firm) and drummer extraordinaire Gregg Bissonette (David Lee Roth Band), which gives the album a bit more cred than if it just came out on its own. The only odd part is that the tracks with Bissonette feel a bit like David Lee Roth album cuts.
This is a worthy metal debut from a band that will be worth watching, but with a bit more harmony and catchier choruses, Mask could have been as good and as important as the first Van Halen album. Really astounding for a band only months old.