Label: Pure Steel Records
Date: November 11th, 2020
Whenever I get a record like “Master of Evil” I cannot but ask the question why I haven’t heard about this band before. The usual reason is that not everyone who hops on a bandwagon makes it big. Even if you’re catching a bandwagon, you still need a “certain something” to spark the interest of the audience and/or a major label. Of course, not every story is the same, and there can be a variety of reasons for a band not making it, especially in the golden eighties. Still, most of them end up with the same answer. They simply weren’t good enough.
Something like that obviously happened with Mindless Sinner. Just by following through their discography and getting acquainted with their efforts, one gets a feeling they tried to achieve what their country mates, Europe, did. Whether true or not, I’m here to write about the early Mindless Sinner records. And those were a bit on a harder side.
In concrete terms, I will be speaking about the first two recordings by the Swedes. Their first EP, titled “Master of Evil” and the demo recorded the same year, 1983.
With the uprising of NWOBHM, the news came to Sweden… Saxon, Maiden, Priest blasted through Linköping, leaving a horde of kids who wanted to buckle-up and follow in their footsteps. Nothing strange, as I guess something similar happened everywhere the trio came passing through. Spiced up with Angel Witch, of course. So, there you have it. Nothing further can describe what the Swedes were up to in 1983.
But what is wrong here?
In essence, nothing. It is clear that the quintet had a fair understanding of what is needed to sound like their heroes. Really, every aspect of early British heavy metal is respected in full. Yet, there was none of that “certain something” I’ve mentioned in the introduction. Even today you cannot make it without creating tunes that will start a fire within the listener. Simply put, you need a hit song, particularly in such a genre as classic heavy metal. Memorable riffs, catchy choruses, adrenalized rhythm section (which is one of the more successful aspects of Mindless Sinner)… Convincing live appearance can’t hurt either, but I cannot judge that since I haven’t come across their live shows.
“Master of Evil” brings a pair of decent recordings. Nothing more, nothing less. Mindless Sinner would’ve been a perfect opening act for any NWOBHM tours that came across Sweden back in the day. Concerning a wider recognition, I can easily recognize the reason why it didn’t come.
Couple of years after these recordings, the band changed its name and soon after, they dissolved, only to reappear in 2014. They even have a new album published at the beginning of 2020. Haven’t heard it yet, so it might just be a killer. Doubt it, but it might be.
As far as “Master of Evil”, 2020 anno domini, it is far from being a pearl from the abyss.