Despite the fact that Fist never achieved the success predicted for them by critics and fans alike they are an important piece of the NWOBHM puzzle. Formed in 1978 as Axe the band would record the song "S.S. Giro" and then break up. Reforming in 1979 (under the new name Fist) the band would release "Name, Rank And Serial Number" on Neat Records. Soon after they would be signed by MCA records joining new label mates (and fellow NWOBHM acts) Quartz, Tygers Of Pan Tang and White Spirit. This would seem to be a match made in heaven as Fist's sound isn't too far removed from the above acts. Turn The Hell On was released in 1980. Despite the early success of Fist's singles and a loyal following the album bombed. By 1981 MCA dropped Fist. Returning to Neat Records in 1982 the group's second album Back With A Vengeance received better reviews. Commercial success alluded the band again though and in late 1982 Fist broke up. In 2001 the band would reform and the album Storm was released in 2005. Since then the group has been inactive though. Known for writing songs that stood apart from other NWOBHM acts of the times ( "You'll Never Get Me Up (In One Of Those)" was about a fear of flying, "Name, Rank And Serial Number" the military and "Throwing In The Towel" was about a boxer during his last years in the ring) and for their melodic style Fist has left a legacy thanks in no small part to the Back With A Vengeance - The Fist Anthology compilation released in 2002. Collecting the group's singles in one easy to find location it allowed casual fans a sneak peak at this creative heavy metal act. Set apart from the over crowded NWOBHM scene Fist were ahead of the times writing songs that were well crafted and lyrically deep. Like many other bands from the same time period the band would only get their due credit years after breaking up.
Metal Mark says-
Nothing says power and force like a fist. Fist had a fairly adeventurous take on the NWOBHM sound. It wasn't totally different, but at their best they played a very in you face style. There was nothing subtle about their approach and they weren't afraid to just cut loose at a moments notice. I am listening to "Turn the hell on" as I write thisand just love their grooves and non-nonsense approach. They could mix the melodies with heavy parts and go and forth between the styles as well. Here they were not too long after they formed and they were fairly polished already. The melodies might have caused fans of bands like Raven and Venom to tuen their noses up a bit. I think they were slightly ahead of the curve for 1980. Unfortunately their label didn't agree and they were one of many bands who never quite got their due the first time around. However I still enjoy them and listen to them fairly often.