Driving Mrs Satan - Did You Mrs Me

12 songs
43:29 minutes
***** **


The band name alone is already fun, and two years ago the quartet from Naples entertained me excellently with their debut album Popscotch. This year they continue with Did You Mrs Me, which in itself is a nice pun. Conceptually the Italians havenít changed much. They are still softening up classics from the heavy metal genre. As with a vacuum cleaner, they sucked away all the heavy riffs in order to leave only smooth sounds that feel like a parody of elevator music.

The new album begins with the brilliant Hungry For Heaven from Dio. The song feels happy and carefree, with Claudia Sorvillo's smooth voice transporting you into a different universe. The following Iron Man begins with a toddler intoning this Black Sabbath cult hit, and is also one of the albumís highlights. This track starts a little gloomier with morbid strings but doesnít take long to head into the bandís archetypical happy sound. This is also one of the few times where guitarist Valerio Middione is contributing some male vocals. Folk and Americana are two genres that the band likes to add to their sound, which can be heard on Megadethís Peace Sells which reminded me a little of Dolly Parton. Another incredible moment comes with Venomís To Hell And Back where the vocalist sounds like a mix between Kylie Minogue and Anneke van Giersbergen. A video clip was made for Trustís Antisocial which is featured twice, in an English and also the original French language, just like Anthrax did with the very same song nearly thirty years ago.

When Driving Mrs Satan cover metal classics, they often end up not having that much in common with the original versions. Often this works well, but some tracks on Did You Mrs Me are so far away from the source material that it is impossible to recognise them anymore. The two Iron Maiden classics Caught Somewhere In Time and Running Free, and also Metallicaís For Whom The Bell Tolls, feel a little inconspicuous and completely different from the respective metal songs so that the fun factor actually drops. The same goes for Voivodís The Unknown Knows. On Queensrˇcheís Eyes Of A Stranger, the vocals also canít keep up with the excellent performance of a Geoff Tate. They also sound quite frail on Slayerís Raining Blood, but the crass opposites still give it recognition value.

All in all I was happier with Popscotch than with Did You Mrs Me. Some of this may be because the surprise effect is now diminished. Yet the new album still offers three quarters of an hour of entertaining interpretations of metal classics that should appeal to the more open-minded metal fans that havenít lost their sense of humour yet.

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