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Metal Church - Blessing In Disguise

8.4 | 190 votes |
Release date: 7 February 1989
Style: Heavy metal, Thrash metal


236 have it
22 want it

01. Fake Healer
02. Rest In Pieces (April 15, 1912)
03. Of Unsound Mind
04. Anthem To The Estranged
05. Badlands
06. The Spell Can't Be Broken
07. It's A Secret
08. Cannot Tell A Lie
09. The Powers That Be

Mike Howe - vocals
John Marshall - guitars
Craig Wells - guitars
Kirk Arrington - drums
Duke Erickson - bass

Guest musicians
Kurdt Vanderhoof - guitars

Additional info
Producer, mixing, engineering: Terry Date.
Mixing, engineering: Joe Alexander.
Mastering: Howie Weinberg.
Assistant engineer: Trish Finnegan & Brian Stover.
Photography: Darryl Estrine.

As talented a vocalist as David Wayne was, his departure from Metal Church was a true blessing in disguise, for it opened the door for the man who has always been my favorite MC vocalist: Mike Howe. His distortion was beautiful, his articulation was savage, and he was one of the proudest members of the lineage of gravel-voiced frontmen alongside folks like Zetro and Bobby Blitz. Even after 20 years of absence, when he reunited with Metal Church for XI and Damned If You Do, two very strong late-career records, Mike's tone was still rich and his delivery forceful. At only 55, he sadly joins the ranks of those gone from us too soon

Blessing In Disguise has long been in competition with the self-titled album for my favorite Metal Church work, and while of course the killer riffs and rhythm work throughout make it solid gold, Mike's shredded howl sells every song so well. Perhaps I should have picked The Human Factor as a tribute, because Mike truly had a human factor in his singing that drove the lyrics to the heart more than your average head-bangers could, especially on that album, but Blessing In Disguise has "Badlands," one of my all-time favorite songs, and there's not much better you can do than that.

Rest in peace, Mike.

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Comments: 8   Visited by: 285 users
29.06.2011 - 20:40

03.11.2012 - 15:56
Rating: 9
Vasil de Shumen
This is a real jewel - powerful emotional vocals, perfect arrangements, good analogue sound ...
01.07.2015 - 01:49
Rating: 10

The best Metal Church's album
05.05.2018 - 21:49
Rating: 10

Am I the only one convinced that Badlands is one of the best songs ever?
12.06.2019 - 19:08
Rating: 8
Dark Horizons

Probably the best Metal Church album, even if I like very much the first album too thanks to its great atmosphere and the magnificient Gods Of Wrath. But as a whole album maybe Blessing In Disguise is better.
We are just a moment in time
A blink of an eye
A dream for the blind
Visions from a dying brain
I hope you don't understand
19.03.2020 - 00:02
Rating: 10
Metal Rambo

The best of the best. Every song here is amazing one way or another. I remember being hugely biased towards this album because I was more into David Wayne -era stuff, but songs like "Fake Healer", "Badlands" and "Anthem To The Estranged" changed my mind for good. I don't understand why these guys are so overlooked, Blessing in Disguise in particular.
You've got a lot of guts. Let's see what they look like!
13.02.2021 - 13:21
Rating: 8
Jope of Steele

Strong album. I don't think that the songwriting is totally amazing for the whole 54 minutes and one thing I can't totally appreciate -- as with the previous album -- is the heavy bass emphasis in the production. The album has some strong songs, Badlands, maybe quite obviously, being the personal favorite.
A Call for Parallel Institutions :
21.03.2021 - 15:06
"The Quaker"
There are instant hits and some slow burners on this album, but it has quite possible the most meaningful riffs and the singing is incredible. I didn't realise how high Mike Howe sings until I tried to sing along... Excellent record.

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