Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Krokus-Headhunter, 1983

I first heard this album back in the mid-1980's and "Screaming in the night" was a late night staple on the local radio station as well. Still this album didn't make an impression on me then. Just recently I have come to realize that they were a decent band at one time and this is a good album. Marc Storace has a strong voice and there are some impressive guitar licks here and there on the album. There are a few moments where I am reminded of AC/DC, but the closest band to compare them to might actually be Accept. Only it seems like Krokus are a little more on the hard rock side of the fence while Accept where a little more on the metal side. This is fairly no-nonsense hard rock and there is a place for that style. The title track kicks the album off in good fashion and "Eat the rich" is a solid enough anthem. I think that I can only listen to "Screaming in the night" every so often because I heard way too often growing up. My favorites tracks are probably the title track, "Night Wolf", "Stand up and be counted" and the really cool "Stayed awake all night". My only real complaint is that there were times I wished it were a little heavier and louder than it was. I think that in '83 Krokus seemed poised to do something, but the next album "The Blitz" went a different direction to some extent. Also so many other bands emerged in 1984 that Krokus became one of many trying to get somewhere. Still this album holds fairly well for it's age and I have been giving my copy some playing time as of late.

10 Comments:

Blogger Ray Van Horn, Jr. said...

Me too. This was always my favorite of theirs, definitely not Change of Address! The Blitz was cool, but Headhunter is their claim to fame in my opinion. Funny that you can do better than Krokus in metal, but at the same time, they have an appeal that original headbangers can identify with.

12:04 AM  
Blogger David Amulet said...

I, too, wish they would have taken a harder turn, but I still enjoy this album (and even The Blitz, sometimes).

-- david

4:11 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Originally I was going to review the 1985 debut from Smashed Gladys instead of Krokus this week. I was listening to that album for the first time late last week. I was impressed by the first nine tracks and then the other six tracks were of a completely different style and I wasn't big on those. So I decided to review Krokus this week instead because I like it quite a bit more.

5:05 AM  
Anonymous Rhodeislandrock said...

Krokus is on my list of "most under-rated" bands. If you go from Metal Rendezvous (1980) to Headhunter (1983), you've got 4 solid albums of straight up Hard Rock. I agree, very AC/DC and Accept, maybe a small touch of Scorpions.

Headhunter is Krokus' defining moment and they never came close again. I believe this went Gold in the U.S. at the time and 'Screaming In The Night' cracked radio briefly. Had they stayed with the same sound, or got harder, I think they would be regarded in the same breath as Accept. I remember a story about an Krokus show with Accept as openers. Accept blew everyone away and people left not expecting Krokus to do much. Krokus played to a half empty house.

No one took Krokus as seriously as they took Accept. Not sure why, the band put out good music. The Blitz (1984) was decent but not a natural followup for Headhunter, a little lighter. Change Of Address (1986) made them a joke, 'Burning Up The Night' was catchy but too Hard Rock lite for Metalheads.

Something that always bothered me was that Krokus always released a cover as a second or third single.
'American Woman' was on One Vice at A Time (1982), 'Stayed Awake All Night' on Headhunter, 'Ballroom Blitz' from The Blitz, and 'School's Out' on Change Of Address. If you can't write well enough to have your own originals make the album, no one is going to take you seriously. Ask Quiet Riot.

Good band, great memories. Check out the last studio album, Rock The Block, it is excellent.

8:29 AM  
Anonymous Bruce said...

Headhuter is an excellent album. This was my introduction to Krokus, and I've been a fan ever since. I only have it on vinyl, but I don't have a turntable anymore. I need to go out and get the cd...

10:39 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Ray-I think have managed not to be completely forgotten over the years. The record store I go to still has a section for them.

Daivd-I listen to the Blitz some too.

Steve-Accept had a reputation as being a real live band. I never heard that about Krokus. After Headhunter they toned things down and like you said, they should have gotten heavier. They opened for Judas Priest on the Change of address tour, but that didn't really help because the album stunk.

10:54 AM  
Blogger Metal Mark said...

Bruce-I just recently got my cd and have been playing it fairly often.

10:54 AM  
Blogger OnMyWatch said...

My personal memory of this one is getting into a wreck, fooling with the tape player, trying to find "Screaming in the Night" - - what a prophecy that turned out to be. But I can still listen to the song without too much trauma. :) Still, I like Stayed Awake All Night the best.

3:11 PM  
Blogger :P fuzzbox said...

I liked Krokus but they seemed to fade into obscurity rather quickly.

5:37 PM  
Blogger Ray Van Horn, Jr. said...

that "School's Out" cover spelled their doom, period... "Screaming in the Night" is a very endearing to me personally...I once tried to convince my high school girlfriend that it was a romantic song and since she was trying to impress me with Europe (HAHAHAHAHA) then she ought to listen to Krokus....exercise in futility

8:30 PM  

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