Great Metal Albums of 1986: Jack Starr- Out of the Darkness

Yet another reason why I should have bought the album. No, I knew what a great guitarist Jack Starr was, it’s just that when he appeared on the Metal Sisters’ tape, I assumed the two songs, “Crazy Again” and “Road Warrior,” were on the same album. After a little digging, I find that “Crazy Again,” the song which ended my 1986 on a great note and got me through some rough times in the first month of 1987, appears on the album, “Out of the Darkness,” which was made in 1984. So, I’m going to have to invoke creative license here because I loved the song in 1986 and now the album, therefore, I’m going to include it in the tour of 1986.

Also what I didn’t know was that on this album, Jack had teamed up with former Riot singer, Rhett Forrester. The two make an awesome pairing, Jack’s guitar magic combined with Rhett’s vocals make the album fantastic. Of course, “Crazy Again” is the best song on the album and it’s probably the best known one, though it was never a single that I know of. However, if I had to pick a hidden gem and I will, it’s the track “False Messiah.” This track has several different elements which all come together. It’s a powerful yet still a melodic metal tune, mainly down to Rhett’s vocals. Towards the end of the song, there is a Southern Rock feel to it, reminds me a little of Blackfoot in their heyday.

While the two tracks just mentioned are the best ones on the album, the other tracks aren’t totally overshadowed by them. “Concrete Jungle” is a brilliant opener, those opening riffs definitely whet your appetite for the rest of the album. As are tracks like “Wild in the Streets” and “Chains of Love.” While people joke about heavy metal artists having their token ballad on albums, “I Can’t Let You Walk Away” is no joke. Again, Rhett’s vocals are well suited and Jack’s guitar solos are perfect for the song. On the subject of guitar solos, Jack shows his stuff on three instrumentals, the short but sharp “Scorcher,” the intoxicating “Odile,” who was Jack’s wife at the time and the closer, “Amazing Grace.” At a time when quality guitarists were everywhere, Jack proved that he deserved to be counted among the best of them.

Track Listing:

  1. Concrete Warrior
  2. False Messiah
  3. Scorcher
  4. Wild in the Street
  5. I Can’t Walk Away
  6. Chains of Love
  7. Eyes of Fire
  8. Odile
  9. (Let’s Get) Crazy Again
  10. Amazing Grace
Jack Starr and Rhett Forrster

Jack Starr- guitars

Rhett Forrester- vocals

Gary Bordonaro- bass

Carl Canedy- drums

Guest Musicians

Gary Driscoll- drums, track 9

Emma Zale- additional vocals, track 2; piano and strings, tracks 5 & 8

Paul Kane- guitar, track 5

Laura Kyle- backing vocals, tracks 5 & 7

Ned Meloni- bass, track 8

David DeFeis- backing vocals

I may have been two years late in discovering this album and Jack Starr but I have since more than made up for it. “Out of the Darkness” is a true metal album, no matter what year. As for the other track I heard on the tape with “Crazy Again,” that album did come out in 1986, so I guess I’ll have to post that one next.

Next post: Burning Starr- No Turning Back

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3 Responses to “Great Metal Albums of 1986: Jack Starr- Out of the Darkness”

  1. That metal sisters tape! Let’s Get Crazy sounds like KISS to me, fun.

    Liked by 1 person

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