Cassius King – Field Trip - Reviewed By Metal Temple! Sunday July 25 2021, 6:14 PM
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Cassius King – Field Trip - Reviewed By Metal Temple!

Cassius King – Field Trip - Reviewed By Metal Temple ! Check it out here at this link: http://www.metal-temple.com/site/catalogues/entry/reviews/cd_3/c_2/cassius-king-field.htm

Prolific riff master Dan Lorenzo (most recently from VESSEL OF LIGHT), has used the name CASSIUS KING several times over the years, as the title of a solo album and to put out many covers. But 2021 sees the release of a full length debut of original songs called "Field Trip."  Mr. Lorenzo himself handles the guitars. Jason McMaster (Dangerous Toys, Watch Tower) tackles vocal duties. Dan's band mates from VESSEL OF LIGHT help out as well; Jimmy Schulman (also from another one of Dan's bands HADES) is on bass and Ron Lipnicki (another HADES alumni) returns to bash the drum kit.

Despite being three of the four members of VoL, "Field Trip" isn't an album that leans towards doom and SABBATH worship. It certainly has those elements but this is straight up heavy metal. As a reviewer, I am caught up in so many genres, sub genres and sub-sub genres. It is much more descriptive to break down a bands sound that way than to just lazily say "this band is heavy and stuff." But all that can get exhausting and sometimes I need a break. So I found this more straight forward approach to metal to be refreshing.

Will Dan ever run out of guitar riffs? I highly doubt it. By the time you have finished reading my review, he has probably pulled eighty more out from wherever he keeps them. And if you like riffs, "Field Trip" is full to the brim with them. Jason's voice has held up so well over the years and he gives one hell of a performance across the albums twelve track, forty nine minutes run time. Often times he reminds me of DIO, which is about the highest compliment a musician can receive. "King of Lies" begins with a thick, dirty riff that sounds like a sped up version of SABBATH. Combined the riff with Jimmy's bass and a sweet groove settles in to lend the song maximum energy.

Jimmy's crisp drumming and Jason's vocals are expressive and clear, ringing in the track's need for immediacy. The riffs around the 2:25 mark and the accompanying short but sweet solo are destructive and naturally change the direction of the song while smoothly bringing it around full circle. "This Side of Forever," is a slower take on the established sound of the first track.  The tempo allows time for Jason to really enunciate the lyrics and bring out the best of his voice. This song is quite a bit more gritty than the opener and his rougher voice goes alongside it.

The track itself begins with clean guitar and more melodic singing but the atmosphere is established early on and is echoed throughout the song. "Below The Stones," is a beast of a track. Listen to Dan's riffs—-crushing but catchy with the groove to back it off. I love how well the drums accent the riffs and bring out their best moments. The guitar solo kick starts the song into a little section that ramps everything up to eleven for a sudden burst of high octane energy.  "Join The Exodus," is bomb of a song that is perfectly placed within the track list one. This one has deep, deep riffs and even deeper bass.  They lay down the foundation from which Jason throws put a catchy vocal performance. The song is under three minutes but they do so much with it and it demands repeated listens.

"Six" has, to me, a sort of blues feel to it especially with the guitar solos as they are emotive and bleed in and out of the riffs perfectly.  The bass is bouncy and keeps the song running efficiently. Many a head banging moment presents itself such as the riffs at the 2:16 mark and at the 5:48 mark—and both parts are also backed by incredible drums."LOA" has an old school rock feel to it but with the added oomph of metal riffs and bass groove. Once again the solos and riffs work together to trade off moments in between that give the song optimum flow.

All in all, CASSIUS KING is yet another solid metal album from Dan Lorenzo. If like guitar riffs, this is definitely the album for you but anyone who appreciates fine song writing will find something to enjoy here.  Compared to the endless styles out there, there aren’t many no frills, heavy metal bands doing something like this and with this high level of quality.  Catchy songs, huge riffs, big vocals…what more could you want?

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 9
Production:9 

 - Metal Temple

CASSIUS KING

Jason McMaster Vocals
Ron Lipnicki drums
Jimmy Schulman bass
Dan Lorenzo guitars

Fresh off of releasing their debut album Field Trip on California's Nomad Eel Records yesterday, Cassius King have just released their first full length video for the song Cleopatra's Needle. The video was produced by Jason C. Stewart who also produced the Last Ride and Torture King videos off the last Vessel Of Light album. 
"Jason has become my go-to-guy the last year and a half." said guitarist Dan Lorenzo. "His enthusiasm is off the charts and at this point I let him to whatever he wanted for Cleopatra's Needle and I think it's just as much fun to watch as it is to listen to".

Overkill's Bobby Blitz commented
It's really  great, I even commented, which I never do .. .  "epic" got such an old school doom vibe, but never bores ...love the journey!

Previous Cassius King press release below

Former HADES founding member Dan Lorenzo has been using the CASSIUS KING moniker for years. From his debut 
solo album to his endless cover song CDs with various lead vocalists. But it wasn't until 2021 when Lorenzo decided to 
make an all original album with vocalist Jason McMaster ( WATCHTOWER/DANGEROUS TOYS/BROKEN TEETH/HOWLING SYCAMORE/IGNITOR ). Lorenzo released four albums in three years with his doom band VESSEL OF LIGHT when Coronavirus prevented any more live shows. "I had music to probably eight or nine more songs after VOL released Last Ride", Lorenzo said. "I didn't think the world was ready for a fifth Vessel Of Light album when we couldn't even play shows to support Last Ride. Jason sang multiple Cassius King cover songs with me and I had some music that was maybe a bit more like Hades plus a bluesy song I sent off to Jason. I was shocked how quickly Jason wrote and sang the first few songs so I recorded a few more brand new tunes. I asked Jason if he needed any help with melodies and he told me he did not. Jason said he could use some lyrical ideas though. I told that to Jimmy Schulman (Hades/Vessel Of Light) and he and Jason ended up collaborating lyrically on three songs."

Schulman commented, "When Dan mentioned Jason needed some lyrical ideas, I was excited to be part of that process.

Jason and I came at it a few different ways. Sometimes it was just texting back-and-forth with a line or two at a time until it took on shape. Another time, a long poem was crafted into a song. However it went though, it proved to be a cool and interesting collaboration."

So what kind of music is the debut CASSIUS KING album Field Trip? Traditional heavy metal? Doom? 
McMaster stated, "It was the kind of material I had been wanting to do for a long time. It feels a bit like Ozzy and Dio playing poker over some left over Sabbath material. The melodies came to me quickly, as well as some of the lyrics. Things I already had fit the visions I had upon first listen and it all flowed immediately. I would not call it a full "doom" application of terms, but, its heavy, it reminds me of what I love about Sabbath and Dio songs".
Drummer Ron Lipnicki ( former Overkill current Vessel Of Light)said, "I think this new album's got something for everyone it's like the fruits all line up on the slot machine." That includes fans of Hades seminal release Resisting Success as Scott LePage plays leads on the songs I Move With The Moon and King of Lies.
Cassius King Field Trip will feature cover art by Claudio Bergamin ( Judas Priest Firepower) . Nomad Eel Records have already released a vinyl single by Cassius King. Field Trip is out now


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