REVIEWS from Snakepit #11 (2002 - my final contributions)

The Force Strikes Back


What a great artwork! This is your chance to get the “The Day After” LP in your collection on CD, complete with several bonus tracks. Steelhunter did a great job here, releasing this great metal album of one of the most underrated Dutch metal bands ALLIED FORCES. After intro “Beyond The Storm” we hear the story of “Quasimodo”. Flashing guitarsolos, a solid rhythm and a great singer, who can ask for more. “White Spirit” has a nice speed change in the middle. And during “Heavy Metal Invasion” it will be easy to shout your clogs off. “All Over Now” is the ballad, one of the best in the history of Dutch heavy metal music, in my opinion! While “Blood, Sweat And Tears” is another highlight on this great release. “Swords And Religion” and “Heat Of The Night” are never released album recordings, and in “Steal My Heart Away” they added a never released single track to this CD. “White Spirit” is the last bonus track, recorded live in the bands hometown Den Bosch in 1997. ALLIED FORCES is Marc Gershwin on guitar, Harold Cucken on guitar, Ron Gershwin on vocals, Steven Highwood on bass and Peter van der Sluys on drums. You can order this album by writing to or to Steelhunter, ‘t Erf 22, 5374 AM Schaijk, The Netherlands. Look at: for even more info. ‘The Force Strike Back’, hail to ‘the Force’!! (Toine van Poorten)

Sacred Pathways

Frontiers Records

I really like the music of ARTENSION. Their sound always reminded me of old RAINBOW stuff in the Graham Bonnet era. Catchy songs, good vocals and the virtuosity of the band added up together, led to some very exciting releases. On “Sacred Pathways” they just continue this way. The great Bonnet like vocals of John West are very recognisable. And keyboard player Vitalij Kuprij still knows how to impress me with his ultrafast keyboard riddles. Besides the normal songs we also hear two instrumental songs on this CD. And at the end of the CD we can enjoy the so called ‘radio edit’ of the song “Nightmare”. The only negative thing you can say about this release is that there might be parts on it that you’ve heard before. In other words, it’s not new what they’re doing on “Sacred Pathways”. But for a high quality rock band like ARTENSION that’s not too much of a problem. If you’re into old RAINBOW sound, mixed with the sound of newer bands like SYMPHONY X, RING OF FIRE and YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, then you can buy this one with your eyes closed. (Toine van Poorten)



“Dragonship” opens like “The Ides Of March”, on side A of this 7”, which comes complete with a lyrics and photo insert. BATTLEROAR hails from Greece and they play pure epic heavy metal. Battles, vikings, wars, swords, heroes and warriors. It’s all there. For the music on this single you’ll have to think about MANOWAR. “Dragonship” is a great slow battle hymn. Where the B side is a more up tempo song, again in the best imaginable MANOWAR tradition. So raise your fists, or maybe even better, raise your swords for these five Greek warriors of heavy metal who surprised me very possitively with this great single. The band has already shared the stage with cult bands like OMEN and BROCAS HELM. And I think that this single will be the next step on their path to success. You can get more info about this true metal band from their website at Or send them an email at You can also send a letter to BATTLEROAR, Papagou 60, 124 61, Haidari, Athens, Greece. I would like to thank guitarplayer Manolis Karazeris, for making this review possible. (Toine van Poorten)

New Times


Meet the Brazilian cross between METALLICA and TESTAMENT. They’re called DRAGSTER and they’ve got nothing in common with the NWOBHM band, with that same name. The first song on this mini CD, “Break Down”, sounds like the TESTAMENT classic “Disciple Of The Watch”. While the second song, “The Chase”, sounds a bit more like the later METALLICA songs. But I can also hear some IRON MAIDEN influences in these four songs. At first, this band was called BULLDOZER, but when they found out that there was another BULLDOZER existing already, they changed their name to DRAGSTER. In 2000, the band changed drummers and started recording their four track demo “New Times”. Right now the band is preparing their first record, which will hopefully be released in 2002. For more information about this Brasilian thrash metal band, then you can log into their website at Or send the band an email at: (Toine van Poorten)


Century Media

DRTEAM EVIL is a new force in the heavy metal scene. They consist of Gus G on guitar, Fredrik Nordström on guitar and keyboards, Niklas Istfeldt on vocals, Peter Stalfors on bass and Snowy Shaw on drums. “Dragonslayer” contains twelve catchy metal songs with a lot of variation in their range. Sometimes heavy, sometimes melodic, sometimes powerful and fast, but they also take back some speed for the ballads here and there. And so “Dragonslayer” became a CD that will certainly please a lot of metal fans out there. If I had to pick a highlight on this CD, I would definately choose the speedy tracks “The Prophecy” and “The 7th Day”. Sometimes the commerciality level is a bit high, but the quality is also high enough to enjoy this CD. DREAM EVIL, a name to remember. (Toine van Poorten)

The Son Of Odin

CMC Records

This is in fact a sort of re release of the ELIXIR LP “The Son Of Odin” on CD, completed with three bonus tracks. What you can hear is the IRON MAIDEN/SAXON like NWOBHM sound of ELIXIR A bound that was founded in 1984, and that released their album in 1986. The up tempo songs show us that we are dealing with a NWOBHM band that had a lot of quality. But sadly enough, just like many many other NWOBHM bands from that time, never got the opportunity to grow any bigger than a place in the rich underground scene. Because nobody was really interested in their single, they released it on their own. It’s called “Treachery”, and the song is also on their debut album. The flipside of this single, Winds Of Time” was not on the album, but they put it on this release as a bonus track. Besides that you can also hear a live version of “Treachery” with drumsolo, and the instrumental “Chariot Of The Gods” as extra bonus tracks. In 1987, the Dobbs brothers Nigel on drums and Kevin on guitars) leave the band, to form a band called SARATOGA. Ex IRON MAIDEN skinsbeater Clive Burr joins the band, but even with this great drummer their star didn’t rise. They release a second album in 1990 called “Lethal Potion”, by then Clive has already left the band again, and after that they called it quits. What’s left is a great remastered version of “The Sons Of Odin” with three bonus tracks and a booklet full of nice pics and the lyrics of all the songs. And the idea that there were many great NWOBHM bands like ELIXIR that never got the recognition that they earned so well. (Toine van Poorten)

A New Life


I want to introduce you to EVERGLOW from Belgium. The band consists of Jeroen van Hiel on keyboards, Steven Demey on drums, Dominic Heynderickx on bass, Manu van Poeck on guitars, Alain de Block on guitars and female vocalist Cindy Baert. Their music can be described as power metal with melodic vocals. This demo contains six new tracks. Cindy and Alain started their musical career in the death trash band POSEYDON. In 2000 they decided to continue as a power metal band, so they changed their name to EVERGLOW. This is their first demo. The title of the intro “Into The Unknown” couldn’t have been chosen any better, because you never know what happens next after such a beautiful sweet intro. OEAAAARRRRRGH!!!!! Is this the sound of the inferno, that will destroy everything? What a mighty killer riff!! And it’s not over yet… “Lost In The Woods” is a bit darker, but just listen to the ice cold screams of Cindy during this song. Jesus Christ, what a power! “Like A Shadow” is another ultrafast killer song, with a strong riff at the beginning. The keyboards create a bombastic sound, but the biting guitars of Alain and Manu definately make up for this. Bonus track “Golden Lion” is named after (and dedicated to) a motor club with the same name.This is killer stuff!!! This demo CD is a real must for every true metal fan out there, so don’t miss it! Contact address EVERGLOW: c/o Cindy Baert, Grote Baan 174/1, B-9120 Melsele, Belgium. Email: (Toine van Poorten)


Worldchaos Production

Be prepared for eight new tracks of Japanese wonder children FATIMA HILL. I have no other words for this magnificent band that sounds like RAINBOW, DIO and BLACK SABBATH (DIO era). Their bombastic power metal contains some fabulous guitarwork, great song strucutres and the heavenly voice of their female singer Yuko. Enjoy their dark, sometimes doomy metal with lots of fast guitar breaks. The band consists of Yuko on vocals, Anjue Yamashiro on guitar and electric mandolin (on “Aeon”), Hayato Asano on bass and the mystical Takamichi Koeda on keyboards. Mystical because he never shows his face, and on the band pics he looks like a monk without a head. These Japanese musicians are also continuing the great Japanese metal tradition that started in the early eighties with bands like LOUDNESS, BOW WOW, EARTHSHAKER, X-RAY and 44 MAGNUM. But I think that the music of this band comes nearer to more obscure names like MURASAKI and EASTERN ORBIT. Fans of Japanese metal will know exactly what I mean here. You can visit the bands website at Or get in contact with them by sending an email to van Poorten)

The Promise

Union Metal International

FORGOTTEN TALES are from Quebec in Canada, and they present us some heavenly metal on their debut album “The Promise”. The music of this band can almost simply be categorised in the well known list of bands like STRATOVARIUS, GAMMA RAY, HELLOWEEN, BLIND GUARDIAN, ANGRA, RHAPSODY, EDGUY and HAMMERFALL. But FORGOTTEN TALES goes beyond these great bands. Reason for that are two things. First of all they have a great female singer, which gives a certain input to the music, that makes it their own. The second extra that this band has, in contrary to most of the bands, is the fact that they write songs with a great construction. Most of the time, their songs have just this little extra, that I miss with some of the other bands. For example, take a great ballad like song as “Far Away”. Which is an unbelievable cool song, that shows you the magnificent song structures that I was talking about, and it definately brings out the best in Sonia’s vocals. FORGOTTEN TALES consists of Frédérick Desroches on keyboards, Martin Desharnais on guitars, Pat Vis on bass, Cédric Prévost on drums and Sonia Pineault on vocals. And there you have it, a band that mixes Canadian musiciansship (just listen to the creative keyboard lines and the amazingly fast fretwork on some of the songs!!) with European power metal influences. Ten tracks with a total time of about forty-five minutes will let you enjoy, the best imaginable style of the ‘Euro Metal’ sound. Both thumbs up for this great band. Please pay some extra attention to the great artwork on the CD sleeve, and find out all the latest information on the bands website at: Http:// (Toine van Poorten)

21st Anniversary - Not That Innocent

Communiqué Records

I have waited a long time for this release. But finally it’s there. Here’s the new GIRLSCHOOL album, and it’s a killer.We can still hear Kelly Johnson play the guitar on most of the songs, but she’s recently replaced by Jackie Chambers. A blonde guitar goddess, who knows how to shred her guitar to pieces. And we also welcome back Enid Williams, who replaces Tracey Lamb. But what about the music? Well, what would you think. GIRLSCHOOL still sounds like GIRLSCHOOL. You know, the younger sisters of MOTÖRHEAD. Great heavy rock music, that sounds like it was written in the early eighties. A few ballads here and there, but after these little points of rest, they press the pedal to the metal again. I really love the opener “Coming Your Way”, which will really grab you by the balls. And “Little Green Men” (MOTÖRHEAD-ish) and “Innocent” (bit TED NUGENT with excellent double bass drums by Denise!!) are also two of the highlights on this new album. “A Love Too Far” is much to sweet for me. This song could be cool for THE SPICE GIRLS, but not for these cool metal ladies. But I guess there is a very special, personal story behind this one, so I forgive them for this small mistake. Thirteen new songs will fill your room, made by four girls who may be not that innocent although they’ve just reached the age of twenty-one. All the latest information on this cult NWOBHM band is available on their website, that you can visit by logging in to: Happy anniversary, ladies! It’s good to hear from you again. (Toine van Poorten)

Conquerers Divine

Perverted Taste

Boy, did they make me wait for a long time, to hear this CD. Problems with their label Metal Blade, made them switch to Perverted Taste to get this CD released. I almost forgot how it was to hear some great heavy metal riffs. But fourteen new GODDESS OF DESIRE songs, put this back into my mind again. GODDESS OF DESIRE plays the truest metal imaginable. The music of GODDESS OF DESIRE contains fast guitar riffs, thunderring drums and a killer bass beat that keeps the rhythm tight. The lyrics are about wars, metal, warriors and the dark side of life. So raise your fists and bang your heads. A cult metal act in Germany, just another metal band in Holland. I just can’t believe that it’s true. But if you look at the impressive shows that this band gives, and if you have a good listen to their CD’s, then you’ll know that life has been unfair to these hard working metal heads. The band consists of Count August on bass and vocals, Grev Drake on guitar and vocals, Lord Arydon on guitar and vocals, Der Knüppelmeister on drums and Lilith and Delilah (let’s call them the evil goddesses of desire, who dance on stage!). The music of the band can be best compared with old IRON MAIDEN (first two albums era!), a touch of MOTÖRHEAD, CELTIC FROST and VENOM. You may think that their music is old fashioned. You can laugh about their show and they way they dress themselves in animal furs, and with tonz of spikes, chains and metal. But I’m loving every second of it and I strongly believe that this might be their most consistent album ever, with “Rites Of Warrior” and “Warlust Metal Knights” as highlights. Take a look at the bands website that can be found at:, or send an email to You can also drop ‘the Count’ a line at GODDESS OF DESIRE Management, Nesdijk 81, 1861 MH Bergen, The Netherlands. HAIL THE CONQUERORS!! (Toine van Poorten)

The Big H

Castle Music

VAN HALENBACH. I think they’ll be chased by this joke for their livetime. The VAN HALEN influences might have been that obvious, but when I listen to their music right now, it still sounds fresh and okay there are some DAVID LEE ROTH like screams here and there. But which band is totally original? This double compilation CD contains all the HELLANBACH material that is available (27 songs, 95 minutes of great NWOBHM music). The ultrarare “Out To Get You” EP, “Now Hear This”, “The Big H”and several bonus tracks that appeared on samplers and compilation albums like “One Take No Dubs” and “60 Minutes Plus”. A lot of people won’t remember the name HELLANBACH after so many years. And for thos e people it’s a good opportunity to get to know this NWOBHM band a bit better. (Toine van Poorten)

Fata Morgana


HELLOÏSE can be seen as the Dutch pride of the melodic rock scene. Their new CD “Fata Morgana” has been recorded without the help of long term band members as Marchel Remeeus and Arjen Boogerds. In fact they’re only still a threesome, but the music they make is still of a very high quality. Melodic hard rock music with touches of STRATOVARIUS and LANA LANE. Bombastic songs with loads of keyboard layers and some heavy explosions here and there. Big surprise is the intro called “Secura Prologue”. I didn’t know what to expect after this, but after “Children Of The Night” I realised myself that HELLOÏSE didn’t let me down with their new album. Another big surprise was the BARRY RYAN cover “Eloïse”. Of course a good choice, because of the resemblance with the name of the band. But you’ll have to hear this song several times before you’ll like it I guess.The guest appearances on this new album come from Sascha Paeth (keyboards), Lana Lane (vocals) and Robby Valentine (keyboards). Some songs will still remind you a bit of the old style HELLOÏSE, like “World Of Make Believe”. But in a lot of songs you’ll hear that HELLOÏSE has decided to change their style to a more melodic sound. In which there is lots of space for the long, well constructed compositions, and where there’s also time and space to work out the details a bit better (which creates a bombastic atmosphere). But the high quality stays the same, although you must realise that they’re much more melodic nowadays. (Toine van Poorten)

Dark Genesis

Century Media

This five CD box contains the early stuff of ICED EARTH and some nice extras. the packaging of the stuff is excellent. It’s a sort of book, with the five CD’s in the front and in the back of the booklet. In the thirty-two paged booklet we can read an extensive biography of the band, the lyrics of all the songs and a piece where Jon Schaffer explains the choice of the covers that they play on the “Tribute To The Gods” CD, which is also in this box. Besides that there are tonz of great pics and drawings of fantasy creatures and monsters. A packaging that you would only expect from bands like GENESIS or PINK FLOYD. But let’s tell you something about the music too. The first CD is a remixed version of the first EP of the band called “Enter The Realm” which contains six tracks. Disc two, three and four contain the first three albums of ICED EARTH which are called “Iced Earth”, “Night Of The Stormrider” and “Burnt Offerings” (with highlight extraordinare “Dante’s Inferno”!!). The last CD is called “Tribute To The Gods”. On this CD the band plays covers of their earliest influences like KISS, BLACK SABBATH, BLUE OYSTER CULT, IRON MAIDEN, JUDAS PRIEST, AC/DC and ALICE COOPER. “Dark Genesis” is a must for every ICED EARTH and heavy metal fan of this earth. The mix of early IRON MAIDEN and early METALLICA sound, comes best to its right on the old stuff of this great heavy metal band. Two hundred and twenty minutes (that’s almost four hours!!!) of pure metal mayhem is released on five Cds. Get it while it’s hot!!! (Toine van Poorten)

Power Games, The Anthology

Castle Music

At the same time that they released the HELLANBACH compilation, they also released a compilation of all the JAGUAR stuff that is available. JAGUAR, a band that will always stay in my mind because they wrote “Axe Crazy”, the ultimate NWOBHM anthem for me. What you get here is “Power Games”, “This Time” and “Wake Me”. As bonus tracks they’ve added the singles “Axe Crazy” and “Back Street Woman”, “Stormchild” which was on the first “Heavy Metal Heroes” compilation, and four songs taken from a BBC Radio One session. 35 Songs are on this double CD that has a running time of about 140 minutes. Now that’s what I call value for your money!! People who know the music of JAGUAR, know that this compilation is an essential buy for them. People who don’t know the band should be ashamed of themselves, and as a punishment they should buy a copy too. Finally this is a nice opportunity to thank JAGUAR for the song “Dutch Connection”, which is also on this CD of course!! I hope that the bands new CD will also come out very soon. But in the meantime I will give this one another turn.....or two. (Toine van Poorten)


Monster Records

What a great release! This double CD captures the three official releases of NWOBHM legends LEGEND. On CD one we can enjoy the first LP “Legend”, which was released in 1981 already, and the “Frontline” EP of 1982. On the second CD we hear their second LP “Death In The Nursery” from 1982, and as a bonus we get to hear a six track demo of 1983. LEGEND is always considered to be a band for the fine tasters of the NWOBHM scene. Their sound was sometimes a bit experimental and dark, and they always left some space open for longer instrumental passages. They had a touch of progressivity in their sound, which made them interesting for the people that thought that bands like TANK, VENOM and RAVEN were too heavy for them. On their second album they change their style a bit, by writing shorter tracks. The demo songs are brilliant. Just listen to a track like “Questions And Answers”. Maybe the music may not be catchy or accessible, but when you take the time to listen to it really carefully. Then you will recognise the beauty of it. Releasing the official LEGEND stuff on a double CD was a great initiation of Monster Records. It will bring the band back in the picture again. And they’re gonna need it, cause they’re recording a new album right as we speak. Yes people, you’ve heard that right. Pete Haworth and LEGEND are back. Their “Anthology” is a must for every real NWOBHM addict out there. If you can’t find it in your local CD shop, then you can order your copy from Monster Records, P.O. Box 460173 San Antonio, TX 78246-0173 USA. Or take a look at their website at: (Toine van Poorten)

The Soldier’s Just Came Back-Live Best


LOUDNESS is back in their original line-up. And this CD captures them live on stage, playing a great ‘best of’ set. The gig is recorded at Nakano Sunplaza, Tokyo on March 28th, 2001. Fourteen live tracks show us that LOUDNESS is back where they started in the early eighties. Great Japanese heavy metal with a special place for the ultrafast guitar licks and solos of Akira Takasaki. But also vocalist Minoru Niihara sounds like he sounded on the very first albums. The rhythm section, consisting of Masayoshi Yamashita on bass and Munetaka Higuchi on drums, keep the tight rhythm together. They just turn back the clock a couple of years. And again they astonish me with tasteful and exciting versions of classic LOUDNESS songs like “Loudness”, “In The Mirror”, “Crazy Doctor”, “Lonely Player”, “Speed”, “Esper” and many others. The CD booklet contains many colour pics of the band, live in action. While the CD contains almost seventy-five minutes of heavenly music. This release will really make some impact on your budget however, cause the CD will only be available as an expensive Japanese import release. The show is also out on DVD, with many extra songs and solo spots for Akira and Munetaka. What a great come back!! I hope they will soon tour in Europe again. A definate must for all the fans of the band and all the diehard old style metalheads out there.......with a big wallet.(Toine van Poorten)

Structures Of Habitat


This is definately one of the most promising bands in the Dutch scene. They play very powerful metal that stands with both feet in this new millenium. Metal crossed with hardcore like structures. But I think that it’s the power with which they play it, will appeal to most of our readers. Think about PANTERA like riffs, some distorted vocals here and there, and tonz of groovy passages. “Veils Of War” was the definate highlight on this mini CD for me, because of the surprising speed change in the middle of the song. In MAC-11 we find back ex members of JEWEL and DEFENDER. You’ll definately not hear back the influences of these bands though, in the fresh ‘new’ sound of this band. But you’ll definately hear back the experience that these guys brought with them. These five songs sound very promising indeed. For more information you can check out the band’s website at Or send an email to: Note: It’s sad to know that I recently found out that MAC-11 has disbanded. (Toine van Poorten)

Metalian Attack Live

Locomotive Music

The mini CD that I review here was part of a special package. The package contained a comic book, in which the METALIUM guys play the leading role. There is a DVD or video from this CD in it. And of course the live CD itself. Of course I will focus on the live CD only. The initiation of making a package like this for alll the fans is very good of course. The CD was recorded live Strassbourg in France at November 26th, 2000. METALIUM has grown since I first saw them at Wacken, a couple of years ago, where they were really disappointing. But after some line-up changes things became a bit more stable, and you can hear that back in their sound. They sound a bit more like a whole. Their catchy metal will appeal to a lot of metal fans of today. As a bonus track they’ve also recorded the KANSAS classic “Dust In The Wind”, which closes this thirty minute, sphereful live CD, with an acoustic studio track. (Toine van Poorten)

From The Darkness

Noisefactory Records

Eleven great melodic metal tracks worthy of almost fifty minutes fill my room, when I play the debut album of Australian metal heads RAVENS’ HEAD. The CD booklet is very well taken care of and it contains millions of great pictures and all the lyrics. But it’s the music that counts here and that’s even more mindblowing. Whereas “Martyr” is already a great opener, the band really astonished me with “Play Me For The Fool”. What a power, what a great composition! It’s powerful, it’s an unexpected slam in your face, it’s pure heavy metal. RAVENS’ HEAD brings you back to the times that IRON MAIDEN still played heavy metal and not the wimpy shit that they call metal nowadays. Rachels voice is dark but clear. And the band knows how to play a good heavy metal song. RAVENS’ HEAD consists of Rachel Pedri on vocals, Gary Minderman on guitar and guitarsynthesizers, Robbie J. on percussion and flute, Paul Grando on bass, Chris Chalk on guitars and Stu (ex HADE) on guitar. No wonder you get such a great sound like this, with three guitar players in the first ranks. When a ranging storm like in “Arcana” has blown over, the band reduces some speed in “Did You Ever”. It’s the ballad on this CD. It also contains the sphereful flute playing (!!!) of percussionist Robbie J. He also enters “The Gates Of Hell” playing the flute. Now, that’s what I call courage! Listen to the great guitarwork in “Closing My Eyes Forever” or the ballad “Tears In The Rain”. While “Legend” pumps up the volume and speed again. Yes, this band really knows to impress me with their debut album. If you can’t find the album, which is a real must for every devoted metal head, then you’d better check out the band’s website at:’head or send an email to: van Poorten)



It’s good to see that there are still some bands in Holland that want to bring back the real heavy metal in the scene. One of these bands is called ROADKILL, and their three song demoCD is called “Pyramid”. The songs sound a bit like IRON MAIDEN, but the vocals are a bit darker. And although they are recorded on one day, they already show some potential. With this release it’s time to bang your head again. Powerful songs, with twin guitar work and dynamic vocals. It’s something that you’ve missed for a while, with all these new black, death, doom and gothic bands in the scene of today. But ROADKILL takes care of the revival of heavy metal in our country and you’ve got to praise them for that. I bet that they’ll play a helluva live show, and with these three songs in the set, they’ll definately raise some fists in the air. Another big promise for the Dutch metal scene. You can check out their website at You can also send these guys an email at (Toine van Poorten)

Club Daze Volume II, Live In The Bars

Spitfire Records

Great new compilation CD which contains live recordings of one of the sickest metal bands ever, TWISTED ‘F*cking’ SISTER. The songs were recorded on Halloween 1979, far before they launched their debut album “Under The Blade”. That’s the only song they played during their set back then, by the way. Also on this CD are two cover songs of old rock and roll classics. First they do a slow version of LITTLE RICHARDS’ “Long Tall Sally”, and after introducing the band they explode in CHUCK BERRY’s “Johnny B Goode”. The CD opens with two new songs, that were recorded last year, with the original line up of the band. These new songs are called “Never Say Never” and “Blastin’ Fast And Loud”. If this is how the SISTERS will sound, when they make a come back album, then they can start recording it right away. The great booklet comes complete with liner notes and great pics from the early days, which makes this new release even more enjoyable than it was already. (Toine van Poorten)


Z Records

The TYGERS are back my friends!! They may not be as wild as on their debut album “Wild Cat”. But hey, they still make some damn good music on this come back album “Mystical”. Their sound may lean a bit more towards the mainstream sound of todays rock music, but I can definately hear back some good old NWOBHM influences in most of the songs. Even in the opener “Detonator”, which may sound like a shock to a lot of the old term TYGERS fans, I can feel that the fire is there. No wonder, because the man on the guitar is nobody else but Robb Weir. A lot more people may wanna hear a faster, more straight forward song like “Firepower”. Whatever your favorite song may be, I think that the average TYGERS OF PAN TANG fan will like this album, once he/she has heard it several times. If you only like the raw sound of the old TYGERS, then I suggest you better have a good listen to this album first before buying it.(Toine van Poorten)

Regenerator Live 1982

Zoom Club Records

UFO has always been one of my favorite bands. Not only for the flashing guitar work of mad axeman Michael Schenker, but also for the great voice of Phil Mogg and the charisma of bass beast Pete Way. But I also liked the line ups with Atomic Tommy M, Paul Chapman and Laurence Archer a lot. This live CD is recorded at the Hammersmith Odeon, in January 1982. We can hear Paul ‘Tonka’ Chapman on lead guitars on these great recordings. The setlist of this evening didn’t contain obvious choices like “Doctor Doctor” or “Rock Bottom”, which were more suitable for Michael Schenker only maybe. But here we can enjoy more ‘unknown’ songs like “The Wild, The Willing And The Innocent”, “We Belong To The Night”, “Long Gone”, “Doing It All For You” and “Making Moves”, next to classics like “Too Hot To Handle”, “Lights Out”, “Love To Love” and “Only You Can Rock Me”. This CD is an official release of the Japanese UFO bootleg “UFO Landed London”, with the ELVIS PRESLEY song “Mystery Train” as great bonus track. (Toine van Poorten)

Fight To The End

Arise Records

In the eighties we had OBUS, BARON ROJO, MURO and NU as metalbands, hailing from Spain. Right now we still have got some bands that convince us that there is still a place for heavy metal music in the land of the sun, the tequilas and paëlla’s VHÄLDEMAR presents us their debut album “Fight To The End”. And I must say that I like this album, although there are a lot of influences of RHAPSODY, GAMMA RAY, HAMMERFALL, UDO (vocals of Carlos) and HELLOWEEN on it. The choir parts are very much upfront in the mix, which I don’t like. But the instrumental parts are very well done, and the sound effects that are used here (the pulling of a sword, thunder and lightning in the opener etc. etc.), give this CD just that little bit of extra that it needs. Spanish bands are still very active in the metal scene, and from now on we can add VHÄLDEMAR to the list of Spanish metal bands.(Toine van Poorten)

XYSTUS (demo)


This young band surprised me a lot during one of their gigs, where they supported ALLIED FORCES. It was reason enough for me to ask them for this demo and spend some extra attention to them. The Cdemo contains two songs with a total length of ten minutes. The songs are called “Into The Void” and “The Luring Red”. You can hear back some great musical ideas in these two songs. Songs that show some comparision with bands like DREAM THEATRE and other prog rock giants. In the slower part I even heard a touch of the old RUSH sound. This band has got a long future in front of them, and I’m sure that they will surprise everybody when they release their debut album. Right now they already have plans to record it, which is good news. XYSTUS exists of Ivo van Dijk on drums, Bas Dolmans on guitars and vocals, Pim van Drunen on synths and Tim van Dijk on on bass. Check the bands website at: (Toine van Poorten)

Back to Main Page