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Review: Twisted Tower Dire - The Isle Of Hydra
Twisted Tower Dire
The Isle Of Hydra

Label: The Miskatonic Foundation
Year released: 2001
Duration: 53:20
Tracks: 10
Genre: Heavy Metal

Rating: 5/5

Review online: November 18, 2003
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Readers Rating
The Isle Of Hydra

Rated 4.85/5 (97%) (20 Votes)

I will do a big fat mea culpa right here, as I said once that I heard some songs from this CD before and was not that impressed. Well after being so overwhelmed by the just-released "Crest Of The Martyrs" I felt like I should give this album a chance. With a single spin I was hooked and ended up playing it four times in a row. I can't explain it, maybe this just needed more time to sink in, I don't know. But I have to say that this album is every bit as good as its successor.

For those who don't know, Twisted Tower Dire play old-fashioned heavy metal with no keyboards, no castrati wailing vocals, and no happy melodies anywhere. This is just good old US Metal with crunchy, dark riffs and the powerful vocals of frontman Tony Taylor. TTD are a case for just writing great songs: forget the symphonic crap, the stupid blastbeats and the poser imagery – just write great freakin' metal. They are walking proof you don't need a gimmick, you just need to kick ass. From the opening riff of "Battle Cry" there isn't a clinker on this whole disc. You get pounding epics like the title cut and "The Longing", headbangers like "When The Daylight Fades" and "Ride The Night". They even pull out a ballad with "Dying Breath". Track 10 is a ‘hidden' cover of Mercyful Fate's "A Dangerous Meeting" which actually suits the band's style very well.

TTD were on the teeny tiny Miskatonic label for this one (as opposed to the merely tiny Remedy Records), but at least Miskatonic isn't allergic to jewel cases. The cover art is pretty cool, and the lyrics are included. Maybe not the greatest lyrics ever, but not bad at all.

I simply can't say enough good things about this album. It arrived at the end of a crappy day in a crappy week and pretty much singlehandedly put me in a better mood. I felt like the Metal Gods were pleased with me. For fans of old-school metal like me, this is a feast of delights, and anyone who liked "Crest Of The Martyrs" should not hesitate to grab this right away. I wish there were more albums like this, and I wish Twisted Tower Dire long life, and may their metal powers never fade.

Other related information on the site
Review: Crest of the Martyrs (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Make it Dark (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: Make it Dark (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Netherworlds (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: The Curse Of Twisted Tower (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: Wars in the Unknown (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
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