The first time I ever heard Darrell Mansfield’s Revelation, I was in the back seat of a Sunbird GT Turbo that was driving way too fast en route to a youth group event. Now I don’t think we were on our way to a bible study, but that would have somehow been appropriate, don’t you think?
Bible Study is of course one of the memorable songs from Revelation (Let’s have a bible study, yeah!), an album that is best defined as a Christian hard rock classic. And hard music it was, AC/DC-like loud with killer guitar riffs and an overall “big” sound. It sounded like your average CCM rock band (Petra, Allies, etc) on steroids, and flaunted some of that blues-based rock that Mansfield was known for.
Revelation was packaged with great cover out too, fittingly inspired by the book of Revelation. And while you would have paid money just to buy the record for the cover, the music inside was mind-blowing. From the get-go Revelation rocks. Thunder ‘N’ Lightning, the album opener, is just a great rock ‘n’ roll song, and sets the tone for the rest of the record. It’s loud, fast and features a great guitar riff, memorable chorus and killer guitar solo.
Likewise, Running and Jesus Will Reign are also rousing rockers played at a blazing pace. Give it Up highlights some great harmonica playing, which is used as an echo after each line in the chorus. There’s also a fantastic harp solo mid-way through the song. I’ve always thought Tokyo has a bit of that early Daniel Band sound, while Don’t Let Them Stand in Your Way sounds like something you’ve heard on the radio – only it’s better and has another killer harmonica solo.
Musically, Revelation reminds me somewhat of Cinderella or Aerosmith, although Mansfield’s vocal are a lot different. I think his voice suits the music fine, and he certainly has lots of range and volume. The album also has stood up fairly well nearly three decades after its release. It’s a testament to the quality of music, a solid hard rock record with a bluesy edge in which Mansfield lets it all hang out.
1. Thunder ‘N’ Lightning
2. After The Storm
4. Give It Up
5. Bible Study
6. Jesus Will Reign
8. Don’t Let Them Stand In Your Way