Monday, July 24, 2006

Axtion-Look out for the night, 1985

Sometimes you find a gem that for one reason or another went overlooked. This album does not totally fall into that category yet there is something here that makes this album worthwhile. I never heard of Pittsburgh's Axtion until just a few years ago when I saw this album pop up on ebay from time to time. It usually went for more than I was willing to pay for a band that I had never heard. Now it's just been put on CD for the first time so I get to hear what this band was like. Describing them is a bit tough because they don't exactly have one cohesive sound. There is a song that sounds like Journey without the keyboards, but then again there is another that sounds a little like early 80's Judas Priest. Overall the heaviness level is somewhere in the middle of those two. At times maybe a bit like Rough Cutt and a little like Malice yet with far more hooks. I have listened to it maybe six times so far and I like more with each listen. Guitarist Darren Lazzeri shreds on his solos with ease and the music is overall pretty solid. Now the down side and the reality check. I believe I heard that these guys relocated to LA, but never really got anywhere. The main problem I see with them is vocalist Randy Amos. He is okay on the slower songs, but his lack of range is all too clear on the mid tempo songs. What's worse is he tries to make up for his lack of range by stretching lines out and this just makes him sound like an amateur. The other problem isn't as bad and it's just that the album was made in 1985 yet almost half songs have more of an early 80's sound. Not that matters much to me, but that may have been something that record labels noticed. It's not a great overlooked gem, but it's a good solid, catchy metal album and the band had some real potential. Favorite tracks include the title track, Road runnin', Spread the Axtion and Fury of the Tempest.


Blogger David Amulet said...

This one is new to me! Just when I think I've caught up on all 80s hair metal, you find another one for me. Thanks for keeping me on my toes.

-- david

5:29 AM  
Blogger Vicious Steve said...

Metal Mark - If you have the CD then its the Retrospect reissue. I was wondering if its a silver-pressed CD and if the front artwork includes the girl.

I've heard of the band and album and it's on the list to check out.

6:21 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

David-Thanks. I think you would like this one.

Steve-It's from Retrospect, I bought it through his ebay name Vegascd's. No girl on the cover, but it is indeed silver pressed and has a booklet with pictures inside instead of the single card they had used many of their other releases. It's worth checking out.

6:28 AM  
Blogger Layla said...

Um, if you happen to check your stats you may notice I have had your blog open for over 24 hours! OOP! Just noticed when I came to use this computer.

6:11 PM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Layla- I have never checked my stats.

7:26 PM  
Blogger Ben said...

Great review Mark. I like this one a lot.

11:40 AM  
Blogger Ben said...

I've moved home Mark,

I'm doing a joint blog with an American called Will.

Hope you're well.

11:45 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Ben-Looks good. I added your new blog to my links.

7:16 PM  
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