Glance at the band logo for this fledgling Brazilian band and there’s every chance you’ll assume they’re called Southern and you might expect something along the lines of Black Stone Cherry. A closer look and that stray and somewhat mysterious L appears, but there’s no soul on offer here either. As you can probably guess from the band photo on the sleeve – a design that conjours up memories of 7”s with DIY wraparound artwork – we’re in very retro metal territory with this demo quality release. In fact, ‘Rock You Till Die’ [sic] is so unashamedly old school metal with a capital M, you might even think these three guys had been in a coma since 1984.
For those who grew up in Kent, Maidstone’s Mote Park is likely to hold childhood memories of family picnics and feeding ducks. It seems almost inconceivable that very same park in the middle of an incredibly residential area, albeit many years later, would play host to a variety of superb rock bands. On the evening of Saturday 25th July, classic rock legends Scorpions are the headliners at the very first Ramblin’ Man Fair, but they’ve also got sterling support from NWOBHM legends Saxon, among others.
Lawless is a band that brings together a few cult names from second division hard rock bands. Vocalist/guitarist Paul Hume and drummer Nigel Ogden have previous ties with Demon, while guitarist Howie G previously played with Persian Risk. ‘Rock Savage’, their debut album, pulls elements from various classic rock sources, adding up to create a release that has the speed of classic Dio and Saxon, coupled with the melodic edges of many a Euro rock outfit.
After the release of three studio albums and a live record, by 1988 US shock-rockers W.A.S.P. had gained a loyal fan-base. However, thanks to their potentially objectionable songs and frontman Blackie Lawless’s larger-than-life attitude, the band had even more detractors. Since their stage show featured raw meat, torture racks and naked women and their albums were filled with more profanity and sexist material than most bands had dared to commit to plastic by that point on the time line of hard rock history, they made life-long enemies with Tipper Gore and her self-righteous band of moral guardians in the US.
In 1995 the Iron Maiden catalogue was made available as special edition CDs. These briefly available “special editions” didn’t really live up to expectations – each had a bonus disc containing a handful of b-sides that almost every Maiden fan already owned. They were nice to have, especially for those missing a few items in their collections, but hardly special by any stretch. In 2002, the albums were reissued as “definitive remasters”, this time without bonus discs and with an extra track inserted into the running order of the first three releases. Hardly definitive – and to add insult to injury, the sound on these reissues (presumably okayed by Steve “Bomber” Harris) appeared compressed and not always sounding as good as any of the previous issues.