Rockbrat Wonders: Who Is The Most Ridiculous Looking Band In Heavy Metal? (Sound Barrier)

 Nope, it’s a good guess, but it’s not Boney M. And no, it’s not Tito, Michael, Marlon and Jermaine either – it is in fact, Sound Barrier, probably the most well known of all African American metal bands in the 80s. Sound Barrier were an LA based heavy metal band who existed for 8 years or so, until about 87. Being an all African American band in a traditionally white domain such as heavy metal gained them significant publicity, but which did not result in commercial success. They were signed by MCA Records, but their first album, Total Control, sold just 12,000 copies, and MCA dropped the group. Two subsequent releases, the self-released EP Born to Rock (1984) and the Metal Blade LP Speed of Light (1986), also sold poorly, and the band split up in 1987. Lead singer Bernie Kimbell (aka Bernie K.) and drummer Dave “Skavido” Brown briefly joined the metal band Masi (led by Italian guitarist Alex Masi). The same two members also were part of the band Total Eclipse, which released its only album in 1992. I’ve got the ‘Speed Of Light’ LP from 86 and it’s pretty good. The guitar work is pretty good – but unfortunately, they had a sound that was pretty indistinguishable from all their peers. They also had a look that looked pretty bloody silly too, with Bernie donning the war paint and an assortment of headbands and moustaches too. The music of Sound Barrier still sounds pretty good – the look though? Best left where it was. Next!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s