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Articles Home » 2008 Articles » Masque - 2008 Face First
Masque - 2008 Face First

ARTIST: Masque (USA)
ALBUM: Face First
LABEL: Sun City Records
YEAR: 2008


LINEUP: Tony Kelly - vocals * Dale Fine - lead guitars * Bruffie Brigham - bass * Ross Cristao - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Face First * 02 Sweet Revenge * 03 Wrap Your Arms Around Me * 04 Sweet Thing * 05 Shame * 06 Walk Tight * 07 Lover Lover * 08 Boulevard Of Broken Dreams * 09 Don't Take My Heart * 10 Reckless Actions * 11 Feelin' Fine


Released earlier this year on Australian label Suncity Records, was former L.A based glam/hair metal band Masque, and their album 'Face First'. Never officially signed to a big major label, Masque have resurrected their material and given it a new lease of digital life using modern day technology. The band was formed in late 1985 by Las Vegas natives Tony Kelly and Dale Fine, who had both moved to Los Angeles in search of fame and fortune. Kelly was also in a band called Network alongide Bruff Brigham (previously with Wizard), the lineup completed by former Thrust drummer Ross Cristao. Masque competed on the L.A circuit amongst many of the hair metal acts that would find a slice of fame in the late 80's. They may have been setting trends with their outrageous image and high octane hard rock, but as their rivals found labels and success, Masque only found headaches and heartbreak. The band underwent lineup changes through their career, but by the end of the decade, the band had run it's course. The material you hear were all demos recorded back in the day.

The Songs
You can take your pick as to influences and marker points with Masque. Coming from a glam metal image/sound, obvious spots go to Poison, King Kobra and Alice Cooper, but with Dale Fine's command of the guitar, they come across harder edged. The riffing on 'Sweet Revenge' is excellent, the solo has a Randy Rhoads presence. 'Wrap Your Arms Around Me' has a 70's funky thing happening. Sort of like KC And The Sunshine Band doing hard rock - if you can imagine it.. lol! It's a cool song though! For me, the best song here is 'Don't Take My Heart', where Masque sound a lot more serious than the res of the party-filled anthems on the album. At least on this track they kinda sound like Icon, with a prowling guitar sound leading the way. All up, its typical hair metal sourced from the L.A Strip. Some people will remember it and get it, many others won't.

In Summary
It's good of Suncity Records boss David Moors to find the resources to re-release Masque. The band of course finding a new wave of popularity on MySpace, which may or may not warrant a reunion gig or two for old times sake. Certainly because of the release of the album, the former band members were doing a lot of press and interviews, even though it was twenty years after the event. Yay for the Internet.

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