It would be impossible to write a review for Pamela Moore’s new album Resurrect Me without mentioning her rock and metal pedigree. Best known for her role as Sister Mary, the prostitute turned nun, on Queensrÿche’s landmark concept album Operation: Mindcrime, Moore created a lasting legacy on her duet with former Rÿche vocalist Geoff Tate on the albums centerpiece Suite Sister Mary. We won’t get into the nasty divorce between the band and former vocalist Tate, as this review is about Pamela Moore. The casual rock or metal fan may have thought O:MC was Moore’s only foray into the world of metal, but the diehard fans (like myself!) know better! Moore has gone on to work with some of the heavy hitters in power metal, providing guest vocals on albums by Halcyon Way, Eden’s Curse, performing live with Primal Fear on their last U.S. tour, as well as reprising her role as Sister Mary on Queensrÿche’s ill advised Operation: Mindcrime II.
That being said, when I first heard that Pamela Moore was releasing a true “metal” album, I wasn’t sure what to expect, at least songwriting-wise. I had no doubt in my mind that Pamela’s vocal talent would be stellar as usual.
For Resurrect Me, Pamela has joined forces with Chicago power metal guitarist Michael Posch (who also has keyboard and bass credits). The result of this new partnership between Posch and Moore is a heavy, melodic, and highly enjoyable metal album with a modern edge.
The album kicks off with the heavy mid-tempo rhythm of Acquiescent, The intro builds slowly with a restrained vocal until Pamela unleashes her vocal power with a fury of emotion and Posch delivers a blistering guitar solo and guitar heavy breakdown. Melt Into You has a grinding metallic guitar rhythm that transforms into a clean guitar tone once Moore’s sultry vocals kick in. The chorus has a great hook and some killer vocal harmonies and another shredding solo from Michael Posch. The next song, Paranoia has a lot of modern electronica elements, but fear not old school metal purists, there is plenty of metal riffage going on to keep you enthralled. Add Pamela’s sensual vocal delivery during the verses and a great buld to the melodic chorus, and this is a great choice for the albums first single/video. The heavy riffs continue on the bottom heavy rocker We Are Damaged. Pamela’s vocal prowess during the verses is comparable to a caged tiger pacing back and forth waiting to pounce on its prey until she finally unleashes the power of her vocals during the chorus. The centerpiece of the album is the title track. The song starts slowly with Pamela’s emotional vocals sending goosebumps up this reviewers spine. The orchestration in this song is perfectly executed, creating a dramatic epic feel as the song builds in intensity until midway through the song when the chugging metallic guitars crank to ten and Pamela delivers the best vocal performance on the album filled with passion and emotional power. Primal Fear vocalist Ralf Scheepers lends his vocal talent to The Sky Is Falling, another mid tempo headbanger. I do admit I was expecting Scheepers to unleash his Halford-esque vocal range in a battle of two amazing vocals, but much to my surprise, Scheepers performance is low key and largely as a lower harmony vocal to Moore. Former Nevermore guitar virtuoso Jeff Loomis delivers a shredding guitar solo on the slow grinding metal of Awakening and of course Moore’s upper register vocals are a highlight here. The next song Breaking Down is a departure from the heaviness on the album, as the metallic riffs are traded in for an emotionally charged ballad featuring Moore’s trademark smokey and sexy vocals. The hard rock returns on the fast paced metal of Desperate By Design. Pamela’s vocals reach for the stratosphere on this one with reckless abandon. The albums closer Wide Awake (Phoenix Rising) has a great riff and harmony guitars with a fantastic lead and harmony vocal performance from Pamela. After just a couple of spins, the chorus was stuck in my cranium, which is the goal of all singers and songwriters. In conclusion, fans of Pamela Moore’s previous work will be happy to know that like the phoenix, this classy and amazingly talented vocalist has risen from the ashes to deliver a highly entertaining metal album.