Thursday, June 11, 2015

Christopher Lee, Heavy Metal God

His love for metal arrived late, but enveloped his final years, and now, as tributes to the star tumble in, seems to speak volumes about his badass spirit. It was 2005 when Italian troop Rhapsody enlisted him to narrate their batshit crazy single 'Magic of the Wizard's Dream' - his greatest music moment since appearing on the sleeve to Wings' 'Band On The Run' record in 1973 (he'd also sung on a bunch of film soundtracks and released a largely overlooked 1998 blues album called 'Devils, Rogues & Other Villains'). "My dream when I was young, was to be an opera singer," he explained in 2010. Finding the same outlandishness and grandeur among the blistering 100mph guitar histrionics of symphonic metal, he explained: "Now I have been able to do it and in a style which was unknown to me until very recently." Three albums followed. Where you and me, reader, will probably spend our 90th birthdays eating Werther's Originals in nursing homes in front of terrible TV if we're lucky, Christopher Lee celebrated his by announcing 'Charlemagne: The Omens of Death' - a punishingly high octane concept heavy metal album featuring members of Judas Priest that charted an ancient Roman blood line and, on the cover, found Lee dressed up like a medieval king standing in a sea of lava waving a fuck-off sword about.

I would be shocked if there aren't unreleased tracks out there of Lee turning it inside out with a Dimebag Darrell guitar.

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