AlbumsNovember 29, 20114,331 views

Beyond Fear Beyond Fear

01. Scream Machine 02. And...You Will Die 03. Save Me 04. The Human Race 05. Coming At You 06. Dreams Come True 07. Telling Lies 08. I Don't Need This 09. Words of Wisdom 10. My Last Words 11. Your Time Has Come 12. The Faith
2006 SPV/Steamhammer
Our score 5

by Cory

When Tim "Ripper" Owens was named to replace Rob Halford in 1996, he was immediately catapulted into the limelight. While many fans remain divided on his performance during his tenure in Judas Priest, it was clear that he had a fantastic vocal ability. Iced Earth recruited him shortly after his departure from Judas Priest and he has performed live and in the studio with the band over the past few years. Owens had a desire to release his own original material after ten years, and Beyond Fear was born. Their high profile slot on the European leg of the Anthrax reunion will undoubtedly catch the ears of metal fans there and deservedly so. Beyond Fear plays a hybrid of classic metal (a la Iron Maiden and Judas Priest) and more recent American metal (God Forbid, Lamb of God, etc.) and quite often, it works out. There are definite weak points on this record and the concept itself isn't particularly mindblowing, but this record actually helps Tim Owens prove himself without the stigma of being compared to metal legends. The first time I put this disc in, I didn't know what to expect. When the opening riffs of "Scream Machine" started, I was confused. Once the vocals started however, it all came together. Most of Beyond Fear's songs feature Owens' versatile vocals over some amalgamation of modern and classic metal. I should note that none of the music on any of these songs is particularly notable. It's played well and recorded so tightly that, while it might not be praiseworthy, it's fairly bulletproof. Owens' vocals range from the piercing shrieks that no doubt got him the Judas Priest gig to a more Bruce Dickinson-esque clean power vocal and even into a slightly heavier growl. Perhaps most surprising is that he occasionally wanders into Chris Cornell/Layne Staley territory, further expanding his already vast repertoire. Unfortunately, the modern metal sounds that Beyond Fear choose to emulate don't always work and some are downright laughable. After a strong opening, the disc takes a leap backwards when "Save Me" begins, a track that could have been the new Godsmack single if it weren't for parts of Owen's vocal. "Coming At You" sounds so dated it could have been on the soundtrack to the movie "Airheads." "I Don't Need This" is one of the only stylistic departures that works, combining a Pantera-style riff with an identifiably Iron Maiden-inspired melody to provide a nice break from the rest of the record. Most of the disc's other songs combine the aforementioned influences in varying levels to about the same degree of success. Bottom Line: This is a decent record with its ups and downs, anchored by a consistently strong vocal performance from Tim Owens. While this isn't the kind of record that will become someone's favorite, it is the kind of record that should silence Owens' critics and moderately entertain most fans of classic metal with a modern edge. Don't let the horrible artwork fool you: this record might just be worth listening to.


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xBurglarx_ 5/15/2006 10:18:50 PM

first post, shit band

lefthandpath_ 5/15/2006 10:35:21 PM

Owens always sounds good..but f*ck....the actual music of Beyond Fear is f*cking generic and mediocre...this cd was garbage

Mike_ 5/16/2006 12:23:02 AM

Cory, I'm very impressed that you reviewed this...awfully traditional for your tastes! I like the album.

din _ 5/16/2006 11:51:27 AM

More like Beyond Bad! LOL

Tim "Ripper" Owens_ 5/16/2006 8:17:56 PM


freakboy666_ 5/17/2006 10:42:24 AM

I've always thought he could wail on a mic, and when I saw him with Iced Earth, truly amazing. He pulled off Barlows era Iced Earth stuff pretty well. I'll check this out!

wizardsbeard_ 5/20/2006 8:50:17 AM

I thought for sure I would see a "Beyond QUEER!" in here, but I guess "Beyond BAD!" will have to do.

theaxis_ 5/21/2006 8:57:17 AM


Licklitoris_ 5/29/2006 4:50:21 AM

Beyond Fear. Ah yes--More of that ever enjoyable falsetto wailing from a guy missing testicles. Woohoo. Joy. I hope this band sets a club on fire Great White-style and has to have their ashes scooped into empty Maxwell House coffee containers for burial.