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 :: Demon, The Gift ::    

Central Park, Bolton (UK)
Kerrang! No.258, Sep 30 1989

A four-piece with a serious image problem and no bassist (all the thumpy stuff and a lot of the drum sounds come from infernal keyboards), the Gift present themselves as Tears For Fears or Fashion with really MEATY guitar and a bouffant-haired vocalist who simply isn't suited to the band. An unhappy marriage of material, image and overall sound, I doubt you could give'em away...

As for Demon... been going a few years now, these blokes. Quite rightly thought very highly of by Hater Hotten in the recent NWOBHM retrospectives, Demon have been purveying the same brand of very English Metal for the best part of a decade with the only real growth area during that time being in the lyric department which has seen, generally speaking, a switch from the Satanic to the social comment formats.

Touring as a six piece with the addition of an anonymous guitarist since the release of their latest (seventh?) album 'Taking The World By Storm', they're still plugging away with their art in a world that has by and large passed them by.

There isn't anything intrinsically wrong with Demon: they're excellent musicians and Dave Hill has an outstanding voice, yet they fail to excite me in this day and age. Imagine Magnum playing the leftover numbers from the 'Rainbow Rising' album and you get a pretty decent picture.

That's not to say that they don't have their moments. 'Don't Break The Circle' from their groundbreaking 'Unexpected Guest' album and the title-track from 'The Plague' were stunningly performed examples of their genre. But Demon are experienced musicians who, while they've aged pretty we'll themselves, have encumbered themselves with a setlist that hasn't got old as gracefully as they have.

The material from the new album was flawlessly performed and very well written but belongs in a different age. Sometimes too lightweight for their own good and with often overpowering semi-prog rock keyboards from Steve Watts that render John Waterhouse and the Anonymous One's guitars to supporting roles, Demon are playing by-gone music effortlessly and with panache. It doesn't matter how well you write it or perform it; a hand-tailored pair of Saville Row flares are still a pair of flares...

–  ' Demon, The Gift ' updated 2006-02-10  –