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METAL TO INFINITY CD REVIEWS

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V8 WANKERS - Automotive Rampage 
 
With the follow up to their second album "Blown Action Rock", the V8WANKERS are back for more with a new release on Rude Records! The band love to American muscle cars and dirty Rock'n' Roll brought them in contact with the Australian rockers Rose Tattoo. Also, they supported acts like Motörhead and Nashville Pussy and convinced the audience with some unique Street Rock live performances in the vein of previous mentioned groups. On this album, the band left their raw punky roots to a more Hard Rock and Street Rock oriented level anyway. Be sure that the V8WANKERS are now a five piece band that will rock your house down to the ground! Songs like, "Wankers Without A Cause" and "The Baddest Ride In Town" shows the uncompromising way of where it has to go to...IF YOU DON'T LIKE THEM, THEY DON'T CARE - THEY ARE WANKERS ANYWAY! Real Balls Out Rock 'n' Roll!!
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SIN CITY SIX - Home Of The Brave 
 
Sin City Six are back with a renovated spirit and the presence of their new vocalist, Russell Conway. Home Of The Brave is an album with the necessary ingrediënts to not let your feet stop moving. Almost the same style as the V8WANKERS, but i miss the explosive driven force inside the band. Twelve Garage Rock tracks on the album, released on Locomotive Music, which i can't get use to it anyway. But don't worry, that's just a matter of the personal taste of each one of us. I really aren't into this kinda music, but will show my respect for the courage and energy inside the band.. Check out some titles as: "Bitch Street", Drunk Zombies", "Pretty Legs". Do i have to say more about the lyrics....just use your imagination!
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SILENT EXILE - Dancing With Death
 
Awaiting their new album which see the day of light at the end 2003, here a late review of Silent Exile's first album entitled "Dancing With Dead", released in 2000. This 5 headed Canadian band started back in 1996 as a full cover band, but soon after, they leave that scene to start writing original material. I think that you can put this band in the Progressive Rock/Metal category. It's hard to compare with other bands because they created a special and different sound than many other prog bands. If you listen close to the singer Chriss J.Y., you'll have to notice his French accent. Don't worry bout that cause it isn't impairs his performance at all. After a short intro, the song "Walls Of Society" will hit your ears with some rapid breaks and lots of Keyboards. Next "Stratosphere" is a more atmospheric song with intense melodies aboard. Some Shadow Gallery, and AOR influences on " Broken Dreams" . They never lose their feeling for melody, not even in concept songs like "Images And War" or "Glasemaaker Straat". We're almost 3 years later after the release and i'm sure the band's new album at the end of 2003 will rock like never before!
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STRANGLEHOLD - World Part II
 
Proudly present the long awaited, brandnew demo CD from Belgian Heavy Metal band STRANGLEHOLD. Well, it was double worth to wait for this release because the results are fantastic.A new singer in their ranks by the name of Rik Wullaert and this is a big step forward, believe me! Rik's voice is from time to time a bit Dave Mustaine influenced but most of all, he's doing just his own thing very original. What i really likes in Stranglehold is definitely their guitar player. He's one of my personal favorite guitarists in Belgium anyway. A full concentrated, very talented and technical guitar god. Just listen to the track "Antartica" where Lorenzo shows some wonderfull things. The one who hits the drums is Corina. Hell yeah, a female skin basher and also very talented. All bass lines are in hands of Andre Kassinger. This demo CD contains 8 tracks inspired by some good old Hard Rock or US Metal bands, so it's no need to hestitate buying this great Stranglehold stuff. You can get the "World Part II" demo CD plus a video clip for the price of 10 euro (shipment included) by visit their website at: http://www.facimages.com/Stranglehold.html  ... you definitely won't regret it!!
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CATCH 22 - Awaken
 
Four headed American Power/Thrash Indie Metal band from Marietta, Ohio and formed by main man T.J.Berry in 1993.  Their music is situated in the mold of an early Testament, so beware! Till today, i knew that the American underground Metal scene is one big fucking thing and it still grows on every day. Many US bands deliver the goods which is proven the last several years with bands as Destiny's End, New Eden, Exiled, Premonition, Division, Antithesis, Eidolon,.....  So now,  we have another US Metal attack with a band called CATCH 22 and believe me, this is a killer band to me, so pure, so heavy...yeah right...so METAL! I suppose "Awaken" is their third album and it shows lots of talent within. It's a Molten Metal USA release and let me tell you one thing. If you're into real Metal, i mean REAL METAL, than you don't have to wait one second to buy this piece. Their sound is very close to what we call 80's Bay Area Thrash or otherwise you can call it true US 80's Metal, easy way out! 13 tracks, more than 60 minutes pure solid Metal, great production and a fantastic artwork is what you can get if you grab this piece! You can order the CD at: www.catch22metal.com/  just do it, right away!! 
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HOLY MARTYR - Hatred And Warlust
 
The Italian band started back in 1994 under the name Hell Forge, under the initiative of the singer/guitarist Ivano Spiga. In 1997, they changed their name in Holy Martyr. Old school metallers knows that this name was also a song from eighties Metal gods Omen. I don't know for sure if the band members are fans of them, but when you listen closely to Hatred and Warlust, you'll soon recognize many typical Omen influences and that's alright to me. The band differs from the new generation Power Metal bands from the 90's. Holy Martyr is a more Epic True Metal band but when they turn up the speed (as they do in some of the tracks), than it goes real fast in the vein of old Metallica and Agent Steel or Savage Grace. It almost can't go wrong when you set up a band like this included all the elements to be a great Metal formation. Powerfull and clean vocals (real epic styled), fast and loaded bass and guitar riffs, pounding metal drums and a good production makes them a fullforced Metal unit. This self produced CD contains six tracks plus one Cirith Ungol bonus track entitled "Frost And Fire". Hope these guys will pick up by a major label company in the near future cause this kinda bands keeps the Metal scene alive and well! Check them out at:  www.holy-martyr.com
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RAVENSTHORN - House Of The Damned
 
More fantastic US Metal coming from a band called Ravensthorn, which was formed back in the fall of 2001 and their main goal was to write  and perform Metal music, best experienced live on stage! The members are: Greg Verthein on guitars, Bill Jannusch take place behind the microphone, Tony Barr on drums and Marion Sanchez will keep on riddlin' his bass guitarlike the best. Each of these guys have great musical backgrounds with bands such as: Black Sabbath, Ozzy, Judas priest, Vinnie Moore, Yngwie Malmsteen, Chastain, Iron Maiden and many more. So, their style of Metal sounds somewhere between all of these mentioned bands. House Of The Damned is the product of working together for about 18 months and i can tell you that the results are amazing and food for all US Metal fans worldwide. Ten tracks on the CD which was produced and mixed all by themselves. Be prepared for tracks like "Lust For A Vampire", "Gates Of Hell" which is a real Thrashin' song and my favorite track on the album called "House Of The Damned". Damn good songs, each one of them and i keep on saying to ya'll, try to pick up this one if you're into Classic US Power Metal with style. You can order the CD for 10 dollar or contact the band at their website: www.ravensthorn.com   PRAISE THE MIGHTY US METAL SCENE!!!
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COURAGOUS -  Listen

 

German Power/Thrash Metal band who started back in 1996 and released two demos entitled Liar and One With the Pain. They were also take part of several samplers and 1998 was the year for their first full length album called Listen, which was a self financed heavy piece of Metal, yes it was! On this album, the band seems to be influenced by the good old Bay Area metallers Testament. Their vocalist is absolute able to use his voice in different styles and that makes the band very unique to me. Also be sure that the rest of the musicians have a good domain of its instruments and you surely must lay a special ear on their guitarists, let me tell you these guys are really great anyway! Couragous sounds like a powerfull and expressive Metal band thats really wants to hit you right in the face. If you have the cash and the opportunity to pick up this 9 track CD, well just do it anyway.

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COURAGOUS -  Remember

 

Only two years later, the band was back for more with a second release called "Remember". Just another killer album, which contains 11 tracks over more than 60 minutes playing time, but it's a Metal piece that differs from their debut album. In fact, the influences now are more in the direction of bands like Nevermore, Soilwork or Sepultura. It seems like their previous album was more aggressive to me. This is some kind of a modern way of Power Thrash Metal played with a lot of energy and melody and got the groove and beauty all inside the tracks. Worth to mention is that Couragous took the opportunity to demonstrate their great way of Metal live on stage and played with bands like: Judas priest, Armored Saint, Metal Church, Vicious Rumors and many other major bands so far. Once again, the structure, production, artwork are definitely looking great. Which release is better than the other one? well, I will prefer their debut album! All because it is a more aggressive and late eighties/early nineties alike album. Just a matter of personal taste, you know. If you want to find out more about Couragous, you can check out the Metal To Infinity Interviews section or otherwise, you can visit the band's own website at: www.couragous.de

You can buy both CD's for 15 euro(all inclusive) at the following address: Couragous, Mainstr. 19, 63225 Langen(Hessen) GERMANY or via internet at: http://www.twilight-vertrieb.de

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KING'S EVIL - Delation Of Humanoise

Old school aggressive Thrash Metal (circa 1985), similar to KREATOR or SLAYER.  King's Evil is a Japanese Thrash Metal band who also show influences of country-mates OUTRAGE as well. Opener "Victim Of Hate" screams SLAYER!!!! from the opening bullet-laiden guitar riffs courtesy of the brother combo of Wataru and Masamichi Yamada. As a plus for the case of "less is more", "Deletion Of Humanoise" contains only 8 tracks, so King's Evil is wise enough not to have too many tracks on the CD to weaken the overall release.  The CD never sounds dated or like the band is recycling ideas from song to song. Whether the old-school Thrash revival is in full-gear, only time will tell.  However, when bands like Kreator and King's Evil release new material in 2002 this strong, they quickly move themselves to the head of the pack.  Here is hoping that the Thrash revival does not become full of watered down bands as the Power Metal scene has become in the past year and a half.

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VICIOUS RUMORS - Digital Dictators

Vicious Rumors back in the eighties at the peek of their career, long before they release craps like Cyberchrist and Sadistic Symphony, they've managed to shake our heads with ease with albums like this one. Digital Dictator can be considered a classic sample of US Power Metal. Digital Dictator contains all those elements a classic album must have. From the exploding songs (once you've listen "Towns On Fire" will never forget the haunting melody) to the excellent production (remember we are back in 1988). This album could easily be a best of for a band! Power, Speed and Melody are well spread throughout the album and the 39 minutes of its duration are passing by in one single breath. Listening Carl Albert( feat. also in Villain, Ruffians) now I understand how sad it is the fact we lost this brilliant performer (R.I.P.) when he had so much more to offer. The guitars of Geoff Thorpe and Mark Mcgee are enchanting while in general this album line up can be considered as the bands best. Digital Dictator was re-released as a mid price album so I guess its not really hard to found it. Really sad to see where this band end up. At least they've manage to leave as us really glorious albums in their career. A personal 80s fave!!!

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STEELPREACHER - Route 666
 
EIGHTIES METAL MANIACS BEWARE! Steelpreacher is a German True Heavy Metal band and their main goal is playing Metal in the good old 80s tradition. Believe me, these beerdrinkin' Metal heads delivers the best they can with style and overloaded energy and power. Bands reminds me while listen to Steelpreacher are: Gravestone, Living Death, Vectom, Running Wild, Warrant (Germany), etc, etc,...I say it over and over, this is pure eighties influenced Heavy Metal. Route 666 contains 8 tracks with titles such as Metal Till Death, Fire And Steel, Metalforces and Story Of Steel...well you know what you can expect, so be prepared for a real Metal attack anyway! I don't know for sure but i guess this is a self financed product. Production sounds goddamn great and the artwork hits you right in the face! Looking for some no nonsense Metal band? Don't hesitate and check out the STEELPREACHER website if you dare. You won't regret at all. http://www.steelpreacher.de
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MIZAR - Accession
 
MIZAR is a five headed Melodic Power Metal from Italy. They like to play it very technical and influenced by bands such as Yngwie Malmsteen, Gamma Ray and Helloween. These bands were mentioned by Mizar's guitar player Guerrino during an interview( check it out !) a few weeks ago, but i keep their music somewhere between Labyrinth and Heimdall.Otherwise, Guerrino's definitely right when he said being influenced by Yngwie .M. He handles his guitar with feeling and the results are amazing. Flameable solo's all over this four track demo CD! Clean high vocals, great bass lines with the tremendous support of a pounding skinsmasher and flaming metal guitar tones. The tracks "Hope", "Dark Sign", "Storm Of Changes" which is a very talented instrumental track and last but not least we have "And the Fate Will be Done" shows us that the Italian Metal scene is still alive and shall forever be. Hopefully these guys are back real soon with a new Metal Attack! http://utenti.quipo.it/mizar
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CHATEAUX - Fight To The Last - Anthology
 

Long sought after, highly acclaimed, finally available on disc! Chateaux. All three studio records beautifully packaged in this 2CD anthology from Sanctuary Records. Fans get "Chained And Desperate", "Firepower", and "Highly Strung". But wait...for those long time Metal fans who have been spinning their wax slabs for years, this anthology offers the extremely rare "Fight To The Last" 7" as well features two amazing tracks. This collection really kills me cause this English Chateaux is still an amazing early 80s NWOBHM band to me. All three of these records received critical praise, but the band just never caught on and finally disbanded after the release of their third album. 1983's "Chained And Desperate" recruited Grim Reaper/Onslaught vocalist Steve Grimmett to the fold, turning the record into a real Metal masterpiece with gems like "Spirit Of The Chateaux" and "Burn Out At Dawn", and the melancholic "The Dawn Surrendered" or "Shine on Forever". 1984's "Firepower" saw the band speed it up a bit, with numbers like "Hero" and "White Steel" racing to the finish line in grand Tokyo Blade/Maiden style. 1985's swansong, "Highly Strung" saw the band keep the thrash aspect alive, with fast pacers like "First Strike" and title track "Highly Strung". Finally I wanna say that Chateaux was, and shall forever be one of my personal faves from the good old eighties Metal scene!!

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ESCAPETOR -  Water

 

Metal band from Norway who started raising hell in november99! I havent got much information about the band but as far as I know is Water their fourth release so far. Worth to mention is that all of these were selfproduced products and recorded at their own homestudio somewhere in Norway. Well, the results are very well and you wont complain at all when you hear this stuff. This four piece True Metal band is influenced by 80s Metal,Epic and even some Atmospheric Metal is at hand. Singer/guitarist Carl-Eric Sagaard is not the greatest singer on Ive ever heard and  dare to name him just a regular vocalist whos got some work to do to making his voice a bit more acceptable or some more stable. Tracks on this EP are: Escapetor, Water, Crow Song, Sick Song plus a bonus song entitled Here Comes The Solo. My personal conclusion about this formation is that the guys are hard working to create great Metal tunes and really respect their spirit. . Theres some work to do in the future, but I'm sure ESCAPETOR shall  make it in the near future and hopefully they'll stand tall very soon amongst many other Metal giants on earth! Contact: www.escapetor.com

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MYSTERY BLUE - Metal Slaves
 
MYSTERY BLUE proudly present their fourth and brand new album entitled "Metal Slaves" recorded at the Jam Studios in Pirmasens(Germany) and mixed at the famous House Of Audio Studios in Karlsdorf, also in Germany. I had an interview with Frenzy and Nathalie a few weeks ago and they've warned me that the new album would be a killer one. Belief me, that was once a promise becomes pure reality! Great Heavy Metal and definitely their best album so far. Singer Nathalie screams out heart out like she never did before. Fast and melodic guitar riffing / solo's, thunder bass lines and the drummer knocks the skins like thunder! Eleven songs on the album which is real eighties influenced and that's what i like, sure i do. Definitely one of the best French releases during many years. Those were the days bands like Sortilčge, H Bomb, Satan Jokers, Vulcain,...stop playing real Metal, well don't worry at all cause now we've got a band called MYSTERY BLUE!  www.mysteryblue.com
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JACK STARR'S GUARDIANS OF THE FLAME - Under A Savage Sky
 
Cult Metal Classics release with the return of the Metal god and guitar legend J.Starr with his new band called Guardians Of The Flame. True Metal maniacs surely know he was heard on the very two first albums of Virgin Steele and also from his other band named Burning Starr . Two US Metal bands with style! For every Classic Heavy Metal or Hard Rock maniac.... this is just what you really need, definitely!! Jack's way of playing is still amzing to me and not only him delivers the good. Along with Starr we have: Joe Hasselvander (Pentagram/Raven), Ned Meloni (Joe Lynn Turner/Burning Starr), Shmoulik Avigal (Picture, The Rods) and some guest appearances by Paul Chapman (UFO) and Mark Gallagher (Raven). This kinda line ups drives me crazy cause they're all Metal musicians with class. All of the members have so many musical skills below their belts that will makes this album a real killer one!! Ten songs which are very impressive to me each one of them.If you don't have this CD in your collection, go and get it as fast as you can. www.jackstarr.com  
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ATTIKA - Attika
 
I never knew that the guys from Attika had another album out besides their early 90's release called "When heroes Fall" until i received a package from Rock Inc. Promotion aboard the very first album from Attika! Totally surprised puttin' the CD into my player and i can tell you, this is pure 80's Heavy/Power Metal in the good old Jag Panzer or Iron Maiden tradition. For all those who likes the real 80s scene, look out for this masterpiece anyway! Tracks such as "Glory Bound" and "When Cowards Die" makes me forget all the sick things that goes on in our world of domination , hate and greed. This CULT METAL CLASSICS release with '88 recordings sounds very good and is also available on LP, especially for the real vinyl collectors. Ten tracks of solid and pure steel, which means great vocals, flameable guitar and bass works, amazing kinda breaks and a drum smasher that will hit your ears like hell! You can count on a tremendous bonus track called Bad City" too. Good advice...BUY IT and bring back that eighties feeling into your living room!!! www.cultmetalclassics.com
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BLACK WIDOW - Satan's Playground
 
More great US Metal in the eighties tradition from a band called Black Widow! They started back in 1997 by Tommy (drums), Neal Vaught (bass), Johnny (guitar) and Cat (vocals) as a 80's traditional Metal cover band. All their local successes led the band to several high-profile gigs and played as support act for band such as Saxon, Slaughter, Jackyl, Y and T, Quiet Riot and many more. After a while, a new bass player was found by Dean Meredith. The band were selected from thousands of entries to participate in a CD project from Versailles Records with a cover track from Dokken entitled "When Heaven Comes Down". Once again, great reactions from all over the world and it was time to make a full length album which came out in July 2003. More than 60 minutes of highly recommended Heavy Metal at full force. Really likes this kinda Metal . Their female singer Cat have a fantastic,  strongfull voice and definitely able to combines the melody and the fire like no others. Also check out the rest of the band cause they all do some magnificent things, one by one . Better look at their website and if you're into great US Metal, order the CD as fast as you can. It's double worth to do that!! www.blackwidow.vze.com
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ELWING - Immortal Stories
 
Another Cult Metal Classics release with the band ELWING from Greece! These four guys brings us into some real Speed/Heavy Metal spheres and what they do, well they do it good! This concept reminds me on bands like Blind Guardian or Running Wild, right in your face True Metal is what you can get from them. Immortal Stories shows us how to play Melodic/Speed Metal with balls. Some more bombastic elements is what i miss from time to time, but that's a little argument the band can work on it in the future. One thing is for sure, Elwing is a Metal unit with great musicians a board of the ship and you definitely are agree with me when you pick their album up. Production, artwork, inlay information,...are looking big fucking alright! Eleven tracks on the album that is made by and for real Metal heads worlwide.
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MOTIVE - Worn Down Dream
 
More real US Metal present by the band MOTIVE! These Phoenix based formation choose the more aggressive direction. Raw Thrash Metal influenced by many eighties Bay Area bands like: Atheist, Sacred Reich, Obituary and stuff like that. Besides lots of bands, belongs to the great US Metal scene, i definitely like the Thrash Metal scene too. On "Worn Down Dream", Motive has created an album that slams, rocks and captives from start to the last second. Not even one song starts the same, no song sounds the same. Conclusion: an album variable to the bone that will Thrash your room while listening! From the Full On Metal Assault of tracks like "Motive To Kill" and "Silicon Mask" to the smoked out "We Were Faded" and the epic "Worn Down Dream", Motive displays why they have been one of the top independent and unsigned bands in America. They played as support for bands like: Flotsam and Jetsam, Death Angel, Anthrax, Arch Enemy, Testament and lots of more. Hope these guys will have a major record deal real, real soon. They absolutely deserve it anyway. www.motivemetal.com
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SILENT EDGE - The Eyes Of The Shadow
 
DVS Records release from SILENT EDGE, a Progressive/Power Metal band raised in Holland. While listening, bands as Superior and Symphony X reminds me. My personal opinion about Silent Edge is that they have a great singer by the name of Willem Verwoert. Don't know for sure if he was in other bands before joining S.E.but i will not surprised if it does. He's got a clean, melodic throat that hits you straight through the heart. Emo Suripatty is the man who handles the guitar and bass lines. Be ready for some virtuosity in the vein of Y.Malmsteen or J.DeMaio. Behind the keyboards and backing vocals is Mr.Minggus Gasparesz the main guy and the drum pounder of the band is Marco Kleinnibbelink. Maybe i'm wrong, but i think he was playing in a Dutch Thrash Metal band a few years ago called Dead Head. It seems Marco goes a totally different direction now, but he's still a great skin smasher anyway. So, The Eyes Of The Shadow is an album with a bit of everything. Sometimes it's speedy or real powerfull and at the other side it could be more complex or melodic. Many Metal maniacs with different tastes gonna likes this album for sure! www.dvsrecords.com or www.silentedge.com
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BLACK MAJESTY - Sands Of Time
 
LMP release from an Australian band named BLACK MAJESTY! If you're looking for Metal in the vein of bands like Jag Panzer or Iron Maiden, well make sure to buy this "Sands Of Time" album" and you won't regret at all!! Their vocalist name is John Cavaliere and definitely one of the best Australian shouters ever and reminds me to The Tyrant (Jag Panzer) and Bruce Dickinson. Also check out the dark guitar riffing of Stevie Janevski (Ex-Cyclone Tracy) and Hanny Mohammed (also bass player for Pegazus), ofteh reminds me to the great Metal Church. The rhythm section consisting of Czech drummer Pavel Konvalinka (Ex-Kryptor/Leprocide) and last but not least Mark Kelson (Ex-Cryptal Darkness). Just listen very closely to tracks such as: "Fall Of The Reich", "Legacy" or "Colliding Worlds" and be a witness of this powerfull, melodic and bombastic five headed Metal band and i'm sure they will heading a way to the top!! Absolutely one of the best Metal releases of 2003.
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