Monday, September 06, 2010

Quartz-Stand up and fight


Metal Mind

The New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) was such a massive movement that it's no surprise that I have not every band from that time and I may never hear all of them. Quartz originally formed as Legs in 1974. A few years later they got a record deal and changed the name to Quartz. After than Black Sabbath's manager Albert Chapman took them on. Also Tony Iommi became a fan and insisted he produce their debut. Shortly after Quartz keyboadist/guitarist Geoff Nicholls was lured away to play keyboards for Sabbath. Quartz decided to go on with just one guitarist and began preparing material for their sophomore effort. The band moved to a bigger label in MCA and released "Stand up and fight" in 1980. It's obvious that the band's brief association with Sabbath had some influence because there are definitely Sabbath type riffs in several songs. The music as a whole is far more upbeat and groove oriented. This album is a combination of late 70's hard rock and the early 80's NWOBHM sound. Quartz also remind me some of Diamond Head and early Saxon. The opener is title track and it's one that combines a Sabbath type riff with the bands knack for a tight and punchy attack. "Can't say no to you" shows the band's ability to handle the slower hard rock style songs. "Stoking up the fires of hell" is a fine example of Quartz taking a mid-tempo track and making it heavier than it could be. They manage to squeeze a lot into a short time span and that's one of their real strengths. "Stand up and fight" is a definite stand out even amongst the crowded NWOBHM movement. This re-issue includes the 1977 track "Circles" which features Brian May contributing some guitars and Ozzy doing some backing vocals. Also included are a lyric booklet and a band bio. Obviously I missed out by not hearing these guys until, but this re-issue will allow me to make up for lost time.

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