Running Wild - Death Or Glory review
|Album:||Death Or Glory|
|Release date:||November 1989|
01. Riding The Storm
04. Running Blood
05. Highland Glory (The Eternal Fight)
07. Bad To The Bone
08. Tortuga Bay
09. Death Or Glory
10. Battle At Waterloo
11. March On [Original CD bonus]
12. Hanged, Drawn And Quartered [Later pressings bonus]
13. Win Or Be Drowned
14. Wild Animal [1999 reissue bonus]
15. Chains And Leather '90
16. Tear Down The Walls
Running Wild is so lame. Everything that is so cheesy about the genre you can find it with these guys. The costumes, silly themes, juvenile stage names, cartoonish mascot, uncomfortable anthems to legions of metal heads which borderline on homo eroticism, and even a tour with Motley Crue. Their music is fairly enjoyable and quite catchy at best (No one can out rhyme Rock n' Rolf, I'll give him that). Pretty much your common Iron Maiden style proto power metal group. I suppose our little front man gambled his lineup until the perfect one was found, because Death or Glory is a big step up for this once novelty band.
First of all, that new drummer Lian Finlay kicks ass, there's no way around it, the man adds a new dimension while making his work oh so enjoyable. The production is better than any stuff I have heard in an 80s traditional metal album, allowing for an in depth sound and great energy felt present. I can not go without mentioning Jens Becker's bass work which adds to the music in loads. The sounds are balanced so each member gives a nice contribution without standing out too much. The riffs are thick and bass heavy with a lot of catchy hooks and melodies. Rolf's vocals are at the peak of enjoyment here as well as some pretty fun lyrics.
Every damn song on here has its own identity and can be easily recognized. There is a twist of a Caribbean atmosphere in the music which makes it really enjoyable. "Riding the Storm", "Marooned", and the title track are some of the best songs this band has made in their career (Which is not saying much, but a lot better than "Under Jolly Roger"). This can be taken a lot more seriously than those infamous Hello-Keepers records, which I am sorry, influential or not, those little "happy, happy" anthems along with those high pitched vocals make me sick to my stomach these days. There is no doubt in my mind that this is the best thing to come out of the traditional heavy metal scene from that era BY FAR. Completely overlooked and essential to anyone who lives on that sorta stuff and praises Iron Maiden at the top of their lungs. Unfortunately after this effort, the band just fell into mediocrity in full and never even came close to capturing a sound like the one here (Finlay was out as well, coincidence?). Simply put, this is just better. Also, Noise Records decided to re-issue DoG with some really goofy songs as bonus tracks such as "Chains and Leather". ("Even Satan wears leather, our souls will live forever"). Surely not the most intelligent music out there, but really worth your time and attention.
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| Doc Godin
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