After the modest returns of 1987's Execution Guaranteed
, Peavy Wagner said goodbye to Jochen Schröder, Rudy Graf, and Jörg Michael, getting together a new line-up and creating the early essential trio of himself on vocals and bass, guitarist Manni Schmidt and drummer Chris Efthimiadis.
That resulted in what would become the period where Rage established themselves as one of the leaders of German speed/power metal. The 'power' part of the equation comes from the fact that - like such stablemates as Helloween and Blind Guardian - they were realising that melody could play a part in ferocious heavy metal, and Perfect Man
, while still inconsistent, demonstrates that they were on the right track.
The highlight is definitely "Don't Fear the Winter", which has remained a fan favourite, while "Wasteland" and "Between the Lines" also have flying choruses which complement the finetic guitar riffs and aggressive rhythm section.
Wagner's voice still spends much of its time in the higher register, and that does get a bit much at times, but the band are obviously having a lot of fun here, and while this is not their best release, it points towards some pretty terrific stuff which was to follow. Rated:
by Reviewer: The Doctor