That 80's Band
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That 80's Band

Chicago, Illinois, United States

Chicago, Illinois, United States
Band Pop Rock


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"Sacred Dawn-Gears of the Machine...A New Beginning"

What we have here is a very interesting release that includes high quality Heavy / Prog Steel. SACRED DAWN from Chicago, IL, USA have managed to capture a style that combines together the melodic and sometimes atmospheric musical elements that will bring into your mind bands like Psychotic Waltz or Fates Warning (second era), with the straight in your face traditional Heavy Metal touches which are getting more powerful touching from time to time the musical limits of US Power Metal.
Complex technical but still melodic and memorable the twelve songs of this album will make us realize for one more time that United States Of America is still the ultimate land of high quality Metal and in the case of SACRED DAWN this Metal is inspired and worth checking.
The records is marked by an excellent production that will let you to enjoy the excellent performance of each musician. Mentioning musicians and great performances I have to point that the session drummer of SACRED DAWN played in David Shankle Group so this could be a reason for the die hard Manowar fans to check this band out.
In conclusion we got another fine release by Nightmare Records that re presents the debut of this great band which was originally released back in 2006 by Qumran Rec. that will satisfy your non-stop thirst for high quality Steel.
- Metal Invader

"Sacred Dawn-Gears of the Machine...A New Beginning"

Sacred Dawn - _Gears of the Machine... A New Beginning_
(Nightmare Records, 2008)

by: Quentin Kalis (8 out of 10)
Sacred Dawn provides an entertaining and promising debut that welds traditional heavy and power metal with a progressive touch, but never straying too far from the melodic. The power metal touches venture into the groan inducing tomfoolery of a Rhapsody or Dragonforce, being more restrained in line with their American cousins.
Occasionally the vocalist attempts to go beyond his limits, but such moments are few; he is otherwise more than competent, and he largely provides a lucid accompaniment to the dual guitarists. Needless to say, the quality of the musicians is not found wanting. The song quality starts to wane in the last few numbers, culminating in a cover of the Charlie Daniels Band southern rock classic "Devil Went Down to Georgia", which, at best, is 'interesting' and at worst a mistake. Nevertheless, the first two thirds were more than enjoyable; the dawning (sorry) of this band is welcomed and their sophomore effort keenly anticipated.

- Chronicles of

"Sacred Dawn Set for the Biggest Show Yet"

Sacred Dawn Set for Biggest Show Yet!
Jessi Virtusio
The Star Newspaper, Tinley Park Edition

It can be the greatest feeling when things fall into place.

The members of melodic progressive metal band Sacred Dawn are living this firsthand.

After opening for Loudness at Joe's in Chicago and Kamelot at the Pearl Room in Mokena, the band has landed its biggest show yet.

Thanks to connections made with Frank Mastalerz's booking agency FM Entertainment, Sacred Dawn will open for Symphony X at the Pearl Room on Sunday.

"We knew this album was coming together, and we were looking for the perfect opportunity to release it," said Lothar Keller, lead vocalist and lead guitarist.

"Gears of the Machine -- A New Beginning" is a new recording of the band's "Gears of the Machine" CD.

"We felt really strongly that people have a better-sounding product and better performances," Keller, of Aurora, said.

The disc was done at Electrowerks Recording in Downers Grove with producer and engineer Chuck Macak, who has worked with artists from metal band Machine Head to dance group Gillette.

"Gears of the Machine -- A New Beginning" features artwork created by Eddy, of Germany, and 13 tracks including a cover of the Charlie Daniels Band's "The Devil Went Down to Georgia."

"This is really exciting because everyone was a part of it, and they're on it," Keller said of the CD, which features Sacred Dawn's current lineup.

"Maybe that's going to create more energy as well for their performance levels because now their hearts are into it."

This weekend's show also serves as the release of the disc, which Sacred Dawn is shopping to record labels and distribution companies.

Since Symphony X is in the same progressive vein as Sacred Dawn, the gig offers a great musical marriage.

"I saw them at Milwaukee for Gigantour," Keller said of the festival, which included Dream Theater in 2005.

"I love Dream Theater but was totally blown away by the guys in Symphony X."

With a strong turnout expected Sunday, nervousness will push the band to step up to the challenge, according to Keller.

"We're all really looking forward to it," said Keller, whose wife, Jennifer, assists the band on the business side.

"We're wanting to offer people an alternative to some of the standard metal out there. We're trying to bring back the musicianship to metal.

"We feel really strongly that our music has something to offer for people who are really into the Iron Maidens, Symphony Xs and Megadeths.

"This band doesn't dominate its vocals around screaming. We are trying to bring back melodic singing to metal."

Tom Wylde, who broadcasts out of Chicago for Texas-based, has been a big supporter of the band, according to Keller.

"He found us through MySpace, contacted us and said, 'I really like your guys' stuff. You deserve to get heard,' Keller said.

"Since he came to our first show, he's been to 70 percent of our shows. He is a huge independent metal supporter.

"He started spinning F.H.O.D. and picked up other local bands. We're talking about putting together some shows and maybe live broadcasts."

Keller said he and his band mates hope to play some European shows sooner than later since the continent is known for its strong support of metal.

"I enjoy getting to hear music, and my whole thing is, 'Why not try to bring something new to people every day?' Keller said. "Music is something people can relate to, whether it's a high school prom or another situation."

A challenge for Sacred Dawn is finding places to perform. Local gigs have included performing at MOBfest at Jay's Bar & Grill in Crestwood.

"It is tough around the Chicago area because cover bands do dominate the booking. We just want the opportunity to get heard," Keller said.

"We want to offer something new as opposed to the same tunes (people have) heard on the radio for the past 25 years."

Sacred Dawn has been booked to return for the second annual Midwest Metal Anthem 2007 in August at J.J. Kelley's in Lansing.

The inaugural event in 2006 marked the first time Sacred Dawn's new lineup performed, and Keller said he is glad to be returning. "It was actually a pretty good turnout," he said of the original one-day event coordinated by Ray Smith, drummer for Eden's Fall.

"He was looking to expand it as opposed to having all Chicago bands and mix it up a little between the two nights."

Whether it is mixing it up at a festival show or a small gig, Keller said the struggle is all worth it.

"I can't get (music) out of my head. If I can't be playing it, it's always in my head. It's been in my blood since I could probably talk," he said.

"For me, it's the perfect outlet to write a song that might be dealing with the emotions of the day and just have a huge creative hand. I'm always wanting to create."

Jessi Virtusio may be reached at jvirtusio@starnewspapers.comor (708) 802-8854.

Sacred Dawn with Symphony X, Sanctity and Echoes of Eternity

WHERE: The Pearl Room, 19081 Old LaGrange Road, Mokena.

WHEN: 6 p.m. Sunday.

TICKETS: $25 at the Pearl Room box office, Threshold Music in Tinley Park, Disc Replay in Orland Park, Ticketmaster and all Discount Records locations.

PHONE: (708) 479-5356.

- The Star Newspaper

"The Metal Observer reviews "Gears of tyhe Machine""

SACRED DAWN from Aurora, Illinois is a true little sensation. This band is actually a must for all US-Metal freaks. I was instantly hooked by the expressive cuts of the band and I'm sure that this unsigned band will have some impact on the scene. They would deserve it because this has quality. But is this the music that really sells?

It's basically classic 80s remembering Metal but not retro stuff at all; their sound is up to date. The band originally started as solo project of its skillful vocalist and guitarist Lothar Keller but little by little, he integrated some musicians for a complete band. The band got the chance for some nice support slots and SACRED DAWN opened for bands like KAMELOT, LOUDNESS, ION VEIN and EPICA. "Gears Of The Machine" is now their debut album and it consists of twelve (!) cool songs with a very wide spectre. "The Man (Time Will Tell)" for instance is a gorgeous song. It's very melodic and dramatic and the band shows off that they are masters in terms of songwriting as well as technical playing. "Master Of Thought" is even surpassing that. Its ingenious groove and a irresistible melody make a big impression to me! "Soldier's Plea" is an unbelievably intensive track, driving me insane.

Wow, it is really hard to believe what these Americans have to offer. They are technical (look at the divine drumming!) but not too complicated because they have a great sense for hooks and a dramatical song structure. The best example would be "White Road, Black Sun". Another song, I can only say: Hell yeah - that's it! SACRED DAWN are all in all hard to compare with other acts, so I won't do that. Their range is melodic, metallic and just great. If you want to try a modern, individual version of a actual old style, here it is. SACRED DAWN kill!

Sacred Dawn's, Gears of the Machine receives a 9/10

- The Metal Observer

"Review-Gears of the Machine from "Metal to Infinity" Webzine"

Metal to Infinity Webzine

From Aurora, IL USA comes a band, named Sacred Dawn and to all US Power Metal some attention please! All began in January 2005 when vocalist / axeman Lothar Keller worked on a solo album, a combination of Hard Rock / Progressive and Heavy Metal. Let's say he build up the foundations for what should follow later on, i mean he wants to set up a band and started to search for the right musicians to completing a full line up.

First guy founded was John Vitale, a great skilled guitar player who was a member of Highspeeddirt (Chicago based Megadeth tribute band). John and Lothar were joined later on by bass player Joey Vega so one more musician left to build up a full Metal formation, a drum pounder founded by the name of Brad 'Sabbath' Sabathne. Four guys, armed to the teeth with Metal skills and started right on making some new songs.

Meanwhile, also concerts were booked and opportunities to play as support greats like Loudness, Epica, Kamelot, Eden's Fall, Ion Vein, etc. was a fact. The crowd so that Sacred Dawn was a True Metal band for real, actually ready to record a debut album. No words but deeds was their goal and Sacred Dawn went to the studio creating their first album ever entitled "Gears Of The Machine". All the works are completed and the album saw the light of day a few weeks ago and reached my postal address early this week.

Previously, I had a few words with Lothar Keller regarding past, presence and future plans of the band and he told me something about the influences too. While mentioning bands such as Nevermore, Savatage, Fates Warning,...I knew these guys' album gonna be one hell of a great product. My expectations became fully true brothers and sisters...this is really a fantastic piece of US Power Metal with some Progressive vibes. Clear, powerful and sometimes real deep and warm voice of Lothar sound wonderful!

Personally, a great mixture of Sean Peck (Cage) and Bruce Dickinson (Iron Maiden). Lothars both vocal and guitar talents caughts my attention immediately. His guitar duels with John Vitale are very well trained, these guys brings you the most impressive axe shredding movements. Bass and drum combinations, nothing to worry about...all is in very good condition. Yeah, I dare to discribe Sacred Dawn as a perfect Metal band with a very positive future in sight. Talent and a lot of ambition must bring them definitely on the international map of our own Metal world.

Musically, i'd like to compare with other awesome US Metal outfits like: Cage, Icarus Witch, The Conspiracy, Order Of Nine, Spirit Web, Taunted Zero...Maybe bands not that familiar for some of you, but these are one by one amazing bands. Feel free to check them out! Twelve songs awaits you spreaded over a running time of almost 55 minutes of pure US Metal pleasures. Production well done and faves of mine are tracks like: "(World Apart)The Desire", "Approval", "Shadows", "Master Of Thought" (this is my absolute fave of the entire album!!...SUPERB!), "Soldier's Plea", "Asmodeus".

Have a real good feeling each time playing this "Gears Of The Machine". My conclusion: one great US Power Metal effort with a Progressive feel that deserves a place in my personal top ten of best Metal albums of 2006. Band with a bright looking future for me. Hope to hear more from Sacred Dawn in the future. __Defenders of the US Metal movement, spread the word but first order at Sacred Dawn's debut at: or MY POINTS: 96 / 100
- Metal to Infinity Webzine

"Digital Steel Reviews"Gears of the Machine""

Pim Botermans
Digital Steel

Sacred Dawn is an American band hailing from the Chicago area, breeding ground for many talented bands in a variety of metal styles. Ravensthorn, Usurper, Tyrant’s Reign, Damien Thorne and Rival to name a few. Musically Sacred Dawn can be described as slightly progressive with the inevitable US metal sound that with the crunchy produced guitarsound has a light modern feel but not of the annoying kind. Think Megadeth, Fates Warning, Symphony X and Queensrychemusically and you get the picture.

Sacred Dawn started as a solo project of mainman Lothar Keller in 2005 but became a real band later on when Lothar found the right people to play with. Now in 2006 the band releases their debut album Gears Of The Machine. Some bands take many years to come up with a decent album but Sacred Dawn succeed with their first effort to impress the metalscene.

Their mix of different styles of metal together with the varied vocals of Lothar Keller makes this an album that has to make a few spins in the cd player before it really kicks in.

With vocals going from very low almost talking (titletrack) to a more normal rock voice, sometimes piercing high (White Road, Black Sun) and the musical variety this is a treat for metalfans who take the time to listen. People with an ear for details should check out the outstanding skills of the bandmembers, listen to drummer Brad Sabbathne on (Worlds Apart) The Desire and you know what I mean. The incredible guitarsolo’s are without a doubt one of the strongest points of Sacred Dawn. The sound of the album is good but should have been more powerfull to back the strong compositions. People with a thirst for fine US metal should give this a try and later on a buy.

- Digital Steel

"Damn good record"

Damn good record, April 2, 2008
By Close Reader (Chicago, IL) - See all my reviews

Gears is a great rock record and a true new metal sound. I have seen this band live several times; what is dually impressive about this music is that it is not studio enhanced: Sacred Dawn really does sound this good. If you're a fan of metal and are looking for a new progressive rock sound, this is what you want. - Review from

"Power Metal"

POWER METAL , June 30, 2008
By Banca COMERCIALA Romana "SIGN IN PLEASE" (ROMANIA) - See all my reviews



The best hits of the 80's!



THAT 80's BAND is a collaboration of talented musicians based out of Chicago, Illinois. All members of THAT 80's BAND have a vast resume of prior and current projects, including SACRED DAWN and THE SAVATAGE EXPERIENCE. And now, they would like to share their talent by bringing you a High Energy 80's Pop band featuring all of your favorite hits from the 1980's.