Forgotten Legacy, "The Oracle" Album Review

Updated on March 16, 2020
FatFreddysCat profile image

I've been an obsessed hard rock/heavy metal fan and collector since the early 1980s. If it's got a good guitar riff and attitude, I'm in.

"The Oracle" CD cover
"The Oracle" CD cover | Source

Forgotten Legacy—"The Oracle"

Release Date: March 2020 via Stormspell Records

Genre: Traditional heavy/power metal

Country: USA

Tracks: 10 Run Time: 57:19

It's well documented that heavy metal boasts some of the most loyal fans of any musical style. It also tends to breed some of the most fanatical collectors. No matter what subgenre of metal they're into, the die-hard collectors are never truly "finished"—there's always one more hard to find album or demo tape out there to complete a discography, or one more forgotten, obscure band to discover. The true-metal experts of Stormspell Records know this fanaticism well, and they regularly feed their audience's addiction to the arcane and obscure by reissuing long-lost metal gems from days gone by. Their latest retro offering, The Oracle, by Forgotten Legacy, is sure to find an appreciative audience among fans of traditional American power metal who may have missed it the first time around.

"2012"

So Who the Heck Was Forgotten Legacy, Anyway?

Forgotten Legacy was not a familiar name to me, but a quick Google search revealed that they hailed from Kingston, Pennsylvania and only released one five-track demo CD, The Oracle, in 2009 before splitting up four years later. This disc was apparently so underground that its print run was limited to a mere 100 CD-R copies! Since Forgotten Legacy's dissolution, drummer John Jesuele and bassist Chuck Donahue carried on in the Scranton, Penn. based metal band Beyond Fallen, and Jesuele also jams with Timeless Haunt (whose debut EP was also recently released by Stormspell).

This spiffy new re-issue of The Oracle contains the original five track demo, plus five bonus cuts taken from pre-production tapes from a never-completed debut LP. Now pumped up to full album length, The Oracle is a solid slab of USPM (that's "U.S. Power Metal," in case you're not up to date on your metal acronyms) which is sure to please fans of Iced Earth, Jag Panzer, and vintage Queensryche, to name just a few.

"Rage"

The Songs

The majestic "2012" kicks things off in sturdy all-men-play-on-ten fashion, with lyrics that tie into the Mayan prophecy/end-of-the-world craze that everyone was so obsessed with in the early '00s (remember that?). Mike Johnson's speedy guitar meshes nicely with the authoritative vocals of Joel Wood, who easily handles high-end screams ala Geoff Tate as well as lower-register, oh-so-metal gritty snarls. At times his delivery reminds me of Tim "Ripper" Owens in particular. "Rage" ups the tempo and adds a hint of speed metal crunch to the mix, and "Cimmerian" is a true metal warrior anthem designed to get fists in the air and heads banging. "The Darkness" rumbles along at a pleasantly doomy pace and leads into the six-minute-plus Queensryche-ian epic "Forgotten Legacy," which brings the original demo tracks to a close.

The five "bonus tracks" that close out this disc (featuring guitarist Allen "Robot" Van Wert, who replaced Mike Johnson) pick up right where the songs from The Oracle demo left off, melodic-but-crunchy metal full of high-octane riffing and soaring vocals. The bonuses are all solid stuff, but my favorites would probably be the Judas Priest-esque "Night Terror" and "This Is Metal," a thunderous call to arms for headbangers everywhere to unite (Manowar would be proud!). Actually, it's almost hard to believe that these songs came from a batch of "pre-production" tapes, because they're extremely high quality and sound more professional than some legit album releases I've heard over the years. By the time the CD ended with a re-recording of "2012" I was bummed that these guys didn't keep it together long enough to complete a full album, because they definitely had the goods.

Top L-R: Joel Wood (vocals), Chuck Donahue (bass) Bottom L-R: John Jesuele (drums), Mike Johnson (guitar)
Top L-R: Joel Wood (vocals), Chuck Donahue (bass) Bottom L-R: John Jesuele (drums), Mike Johnson (guitar) | Source

Summing It Up

Forgotten Legacy may have flown under my radar during their first go-round in the early 2010s, but they definitely would have been right up my alley back then. At least I'm on board now... hey, better late than never, right?

Stormspell has released another winner here. Labels like these deserve props for the hard work they put in uncovering these lost jewels so they have another chance to reach the hungry metal masses. Thanks to this deluxe reissue, Stormspell has ensured that Forgotten Legacy will not be forgotten.

© 2020 Keith Abt

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, spinditty.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://maven.io/company/pages/privacy

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
    ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)