Sunday, February 03, 2008


Another week, another post, more ass-kicking action from the past dragged out of the dusty vault to shame todays practitioners of the art. A hefty chunk of NWOBHM, both vinyl and demo stylee, some US Metal from the glory days and even a little sojourn into Hard Rock/AOR land for them that like such things. There's bound to be something here to bring a smile to your face, at least that's the plan.
To begin with tonight, we quantum leap back in time to the year 1985 for a rendezvous with US Trad Metal four-piece Dungeon, who released this, their lone album, "Fortress Of Rock" that year on the Medieval label.
Taking their cues from the MAIDEN/PRIEST axis of influence, the boys riff up a storm across the 10 songs here. Although perhaps not individual enough to have made the major league, nonetheless the songs are well written and conscise, played really well by musicians with style and guile, and despite budget constraints the production is effective if a little "of it's time". It's certainly a big hit on the collectors circuit, with copies changing hands for $100 a piece. The band managed to release a further three song demo in 1987, but as Metal was split into opposing "Glam" & "Thrash" camps by this time, interest in Dungeon's proto-Power Metal was limited, and the boys called it a day soon after. Don't know if i'd feel the same way if i'd just shelled out $100 for a copy, but i like this one, it's solid from start to finish with genuine pockets of excitement and innovation, try for yourself.

DUNGEON - Fortress Of Rock (1985) USA

A really obscure collectors piece for you now, this is the lone album by Texan Hard Rock/AOR band Sirius, 1979's "Rising". Some of you with long memories or eclectic record collections may remember earlier Texan bands BUBBLE PUPPY & DEMIAN, who both released one off albums in the late '60's and early '70's. Guitarists Rod Price & Todd Potter had been mainstays of both of those bands, and after several years apart, reunited in the late 70's in a new quartet which they named Sirius and recorded this underrated little record. Fans of their previous acts will probably be a little disappointed by "Rising" initially as hit has none of the psychedelia or fuzz guitarwork which were hallmarks of the earlier bands, but approached with an open mind their is much to enjoy & admire here. The closest comparison i can come up with is that it reminds me of TOMMY BOLIN era JAMES GANG in places, especially on stand out track, "No Idea". Some of the songs veer off too far into radio rock territory for my tastes, but the defy twin guitarwork rescues even the poppier songs. Todd Potter also deserves special praise for his fantastic vocals, sounding great whatever tangent the music takes him on. Give it a listen, lemmy know what you reckon.

SIRIUS - Rising (1979) USA

Mox Nix were another four-piece act from the state of Texas, however the Houston quartet were a far weightier proposition than Sirius. Formed in '82, they bagan as a covers band playing PRIEST, UFO, SAXON & MAIDEN songs on the local club circuit, gradually introducing more & more self written material into their set and building a strong local following. A 1984 demo called "All Access", generated positive reviews in the European Metal magazines, and French label, Axe Killer Records offered the band a one album deal on the strength of it. The self-titled album was released the following year, and received strong reviews and a lot of local airplay, which resulted in the band touring with the likes of ACCEPT, WARLOCK and YNGWIE MALMSTEEN. At this time they signed with Shatter Records & recorded a still unreleased album in New York which was produced by Alex Perialis & RAVEN drummer Rob Hunter, and featured ex-MAIDEN man Paul Di'Anno on vocals. Unfortunately the label folded shortly thereafter and a proposed release through Metal Blade fell through, eventually leading to the frustrated bands demise.
A real shame, as this is resolutely "up" feel good Metal with great anthemic choruses, they could'a bin contenders! Enjoy Mox Nix, they might just "Steal The Show".

MOX NIX - Mox Nix (1985) USA

The rest of this weeks post is now devoted solely to the great and the good of the NWOBHM scene, beginning with Welsh quartet Preyer. This is their first demo, "On The Prowl" from 1985, 3 excellent songs which again are heavily influenced by Brummie Metal Gods, JUDAS PRIEST.
They released a further demo before signing with Ebony Records who released their sole album, "Terminator", in 1986, which attracted good reviews and led to the band appearing twice on BBC TV's youth programme, "Juice". I love the raw sound of this one, the album being too polished for my tastes at the time, although i'd probably enjoy it now. As Kerrang! magazine said of them at the time, "Preyer provide a sharp kick in the kidneys", now how's that for a recommendation?

PREYER - On The Prowl Demo (1985) UK

A nice little EP next for you from the legendary Neat Records label. This is the Various Artists compilation, "One Take No Dubs" EP from 1982, and features HELLANBACH, BLACK ROSE, AVENGER & ALIEN. As you're doubtless aware, the first three bands went on to achieve a degree of success, releasing at least two albums each, however this appears to be the only recorded legacy of the band Alien. For all four bands this was their recording debut, and as the title suggests, all were flung in at the deep end, with only one song to impress, recorded quickly with no frills, just stand or fall on your performance. All 4 bands do well out of the format, sounding lean & hungry. A good 'un.

VARIOUS ARTISTS - One Take No Dubs EP (1982) UK

On the more Hard Rock end of the NWOBHM scale now, we bring you the lone release by Stockport quintet Thin End Of The Wedge, the "Lights Are On Green" 7" which came out on the Jungle label in 1981. This is one of the overlooked gems in the dusty box marked "NWOBHM", a pair of seriously catchy but rockin' tracks, both topped by the excellent vocals of one Babs Norris, with some tasty guitar playing courtesy of her brother Steve. Unfortunately for us, they didn't stick around long enough to record an album, splitting shortly after the single's release. The Norris siblings musically reunited in 2001 in a new band called FAG ASH LIL, to date they have released an EP and a Mini Album. Details in txt file included with rar. This one's recommended!!!

THIN END OF THE WEDGE - Lights Are On Green 7" (1981) UK

Finally tonight, another early entry in the genre, this one from way back in 1979. This is the "Change" 7" by Reading Hard Rockers Firebird, which was their only record, released on the Rat Records label. This is musically much more in tune with the mid-70's Rock sound than the grass roots Metal movement which was beginning to find it's feet, with keyboards well to the fore & a boogie back beat. Still a worthwhile listen though, it has what we old timers call "period charm".

FIREBIRD - Change 7" (1979) UK

So that's it again for another week, hope you enjoy this selection.
See y'all back here again soon for more of the unusual.
Keep commenting!


Anonymous nightsblood said...

Cool stuff as always! Thin End of the Wedge also contributed a song called 'The Letter' to a compilation album, 'Battle of the Bands Vol. 2'. It's a bit different from the tracks on the single, being more of a short, commercial-leaning ballad. It's not terrible, but not great. I don't have the entire album, but I can upload the TEotW song if anyone wants to hear it.

One request if anyone can help (I don't think I've asked about this one before; if so, sorry for the duplication). Does anyone have the 'Southern Comfort' compilation album? It's one of those local samplers that contained several good NWOBHM songs. I know the bands Deuce and Straight Six are featured. They made several volumes in the SC series; I'm looking for vol 1. Thanks for any help with this one. I have copies of some of the songs but not all of them, and one of them (Straight Six) doesn't play correctly, which is a shame 'cause it's a great tune.

Monday, February 04, 2008 10:21:00 AM  
Blogger KEEP IT NWOBHM!!! said...

Thank you for the NWOBHM! Cheers, carajo

Monday, February 04, 2008 12:19:00 PM  
Anonymous matt said...

I saw Sirius several times back when I was in high school. The song "guacamole rock n' roll" was a favorite for it's silly lyric and the fact that they would let it rip on the guitars. I thought the album sounded a bit tame compared to the live set.. I recently read that Potter may be putting Bubble Puppy together for a few shows because a few of the guys are having medical issues & he'd like them to be inducted into the Texas Music Hall of Fame while they are still around to enjoy it. My vinyl is long gone so thanks for the upload.
You also continue to amaze with your obscure NWOBHM singles. Thanks

Monday, February 04, 2008 6:26:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

nice to have you back in action.
always great to see what your blog
has to offer.
enjoying 99% of it !!
keep up the good work !!

Tuesday, February 05, 2008 2:18:00 AM  
Blogger Mettle H said...

Cool postings, many thanks

Tuesday, February 05, 2008 1:00:00 PM  
Blogger KEEP IT NWOBHM!!! said...

Does anybody know if two bonus tracks of the Mox Nix cd are sung by DiAnno? (bonustracks 11. Lightning Without Thunder 12. Red Planet)

Tuesday, February 05, 2008 1:47:00 PM  
Anonymous nwobhm00 said...

thanx for all the good stuff... and here's a link for ya to one of the best tracks from the era ! listen to: fight for freedom.
enjoy !


Wednesday, February 06, 2008 1:33:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What can I say? Perfect as always... Keep on posting, guys, please.. :-\

Wednesday, February 06, 2008 2:41:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great Stuff


Wednesday, February 06, 2008 5:22:00 PM  
Anonymous nightsblood said...

nwobhm00- are you familiar with the Hiroshima 'soldier of the world' single? They sort of remind me of Energy but better! Similar 'politically aware' lyrics but the songs are tighter and more energetic than the Energy tune.

Wednesday, February 06, 2008 7:19:00 PM  
Blogger remandcharlotte said...

Hi, great stuff on your blog. I would be very grateful if you could re-post the Peter French album, Ducks in flight. Many thanks.

Thursday, February 07, 2008 8:16:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanx a lot for your Super Blog, please maybe can you upload again "QUEST - Quest EP (1984) USA" the link is dead :( thanks and long life to your great blog mate!

Thursday, February 07, 2008 9:51:00 AM  
Anonymous nwobhm00 said...

nightsblood - you are right, the tracks sound alike in some way ! i do have the single on my pc... i also have their album. too bad the albums sounds to clean.
and eh, to be honest... the Hiroshima track is better.
i'll try to find a single that is better than Hiroshima. will be difficult !!

Thursday, February 07, 2008 4:42:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks! as always a great sampling of music! I want to say that I especially dig those weird hard rockish or waveish not quite NWOBHM style things like Firebird, Amazon, Triarchy, Lightning Raiders, Hoggs etc. Keep em coming!

Thursday, February 07, 2008 4:47:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

well done blogsite, amazing stuff, most of it i have seen years ago. i´m still searching for a band called HALIFAX with their one and only album from 1981. can anybody help me ?

Tuesday, February 19, 2008 11:57:00 AM  
Blogger Keir said...

Great stuff! I always thought that Alien was the best band from the One Take No Dubs comp. Can't understand why they didn't release a single or something...

Thursday, February 21, 2008 3:55:00 PM  
Blogger david said...

Fantastic stuff here.
But can anybody help me find 3 albums
2 By the Heavy Metal Kids Anvil Chorus & kitsch.
Also a British band from the late 80's early 90's called Tilt.
keep up the great work

Wednesday, February 27, 2008 3:47:00 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi, as you may already found I am fresh here.
In first steps it is really good if somebody supports you, so hope to meet friendly and helpful people here. Let me know if I can help you.
Thanks and good luck everyone! ;)

Monday, March 01, 2010 3:43:00 AM  

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