THE CULT – I was first introduced to the music of The Cult from Best Metal Buddy Scott Coverdale, back in our college days. The first album (actually cassette) that Coverdale had me listen to from The Cult was 1987’s Electric. That album’s title pretty much sums up how The Cult always came across to me with their Heavy Rock: Electric.
1989 seemed to be the transition year for every Heavy Metal band out there. Grunge was coming in like a stampede and the rest was history. However, The Cult made a HUGE statement with their fourth album Sonic Temple. Two hit songs, Fire Woman and Sweet Soul Sister made it to Headbangers Ball on MTV, with a damn good rotation at that. It definitely was solidified, through Sonic Temple, that Electric was no fluke and The Cult were no longer a Gothic Rock band; even though Gothic Rock was still swirling about the underground with pride and bushels of fans, in 1989.
I believe Sonic Temple was the breakthrough album for The Cult. The one-two punch of Electric and Sonic Temple took The Cult to an Arena level; there’s just no disputing that. For my ears, the vocals of Ian Astbury have always been powerful and on Sonic Temple there’s no exception. When great guitarists names are mentioned or written about, I seldom hear or see Billy Duffy’s name. I’ll be honest with you, Billy Duffy has always been a top contender and he’s a thrill to listen to on Sonic Temple! Plus… that’s Billy Duffy pictured on the Sonic Temple album cover (above). Ian Astbury is also pictured on the album cover’s foreground.
As a songwriting team, Ian Astbury and Billy Duffy are nothing short of remarkable, in my Metal opinion. Sonic Temple was (and still is) heavy enough to magnetically lure fans of (as examples) Judas Priest, Iron Maiden and Scorpions; trust me, I witnessed it with my own eyes. If you’ve never listened to The Cult, I suggest you do. Anyone new to Sonic Temple should be left in awe of the album opener Sun King; while pondering how The Cult can possibly top this song on the remainder of the album. Sonic Temple is nothing short of a true Heavy Rock classic. – Stone
Metal Side Notes:
* Jamie Stewart (bass) and Mickey Curry (drums) were the rhythm section on Sonic Temple. Yes, they nailed it on this album.
* Sonic Temple peaked at #10 on the Billboard 200.
* My idea to revisit Sonic Temple came about from my Metal Buddy Dave; he guessed the song very easily that I played on the jukebox, recently, at our favorite watering hole. Dave being a true fan of The Cult was super pumped to hear Fire Woman blaring loud; it made me very proud.
* For more info on THE CULT:
LONG LIVE THE CULT.