Crushing Blow is a French heavy metal band based in the southern city of Marseilles. Initially Guillaume sang and played the guitar. The band was formed circa 1996 and issued a demo called Crushing Blow in 2000 and another promo in 2002. Singer Audrey had joined in 2000 replacing Olivier. Brennus issued an album by the band in 2003 following which the band disappeared for several years. The return included a contract with Infernö Records.
CRUSHING BLOW – CEASE FIRE – INFERNO
The cover is surely nothing but the feminine answer to Mötley Crüe’s Too Fast For Love, which itself was a Rolling Stone parody. Cease Fire, however, goes at it with no discernable nod to Los Angeles. This is classic heavy metal.
The band is fronted by Valène De Santis - she seems to only be in ‘blowing’ bands - who takes somewhat after Doro Pesch. The good news is she is many times the talent that Doro was and is clearly associated with better and heavier musicians. She is flat at higher pitches, yet has a lot of stamina, drive and feeling for her art. Let’s hope she doesn’t become a has-been whore that sleeps with a couple of German guys, a mongrel from Kiss, a retard from Megadeth and other miscellaneous producers and hangers-on.
For now, Cease Fire does not take its own advice and attacks with power coupled with Classical influences, slower interludes and a guitar, vocal and drum that mean business. Only the bass seems to have gone amiss in the mix. Among the tracks, the title track begins with a bang before the riffs go melodic, My Venom happens to be the obligatory slow song, whereas its previous track, Memories is not. The Prophecies ends the album and mixes in male vocals which is exactly what Blacklace did many moons ago. Oddly, the song Rise Your Soul talks of “reality” which is ironic given its title. The whole ‘trust in yourself’ message is obtuse and cliché-ridden to begin with.
This is a good band, good album and an underground metal insider tip. It is worth checking out. – Ali “The Metallian”