Friday, August 16, 2013

Bloody Climax-Back to the Wall

Karthago Records

Here's an idea that I can totally get behind. As part of their new series entitled "Heavy Metal Classics Collection", which is due to start up this September (with "Back to the Wall" being the first in the series), the fine folks over at Karthago Records plan to release cult "one and done" recordings. Or as they put it "one hit wonders". Either tag works and the premise is pretty straight forward. You take a band that only released one album in their career (and not just any band/recording as they obviously have to be worth the effort) and re-master it/re-package it for the heavy metal community at large. Maybe it's not exactly a new idea (as there does seem to be more and more of these "one and done" albums being re-released in epic form), but the more labels doing this the better off  fans and collectors alike will be. Especially seeing as an album like "Back to the Wall" goes for big bucks on the secondary market as it's rare. With this re-release fans, and that includes me, will finally get a chance to hear this album in all of it's glory (hey, it's remastered folks and it sounds SO GOOD!) plus, and this is a nice touch, this re-mastered, re-release comes with previously unreleased songs (off of what would have been the second album for Bloody Climax) for a total of 16 tracks and a run-time of 78 minutes! That's 78 minutes of pure, unfiltered, no-frills German heavy metal-80's style! With a 24-page booklet! due to be issued with this cult album (hell yeah!) this one gets marked down as a must-buy folks (or at least for me!). While 2 of the bonus cuts, "Run for Cover" and "Ride with the Wind",  did show up on a 1987 Split that Bloody Climax was a part of, alongside bands like Midas Touch and Lancer, 5 of these tracks look as if they have never seen the light of day. That is until now thanks to this cool collection! Comparison-wise, as far as the original 1985 album goes, it's said that "Back to the Wall" was on the same level as Creature and Black Fate. Until I first played this re-release I had my own doubts about the validity of that comment. Once I finished up what was the original part of this collection (in other words the initial tracks from "Back to the Wall") I found myself in agreement with not only that idea, but the one which  holds that the original 9-track album is one the biggest classics of German heavy metal! It's too bad then a planned second album didn't happen as Bloody Climax could have been held in much higher regard then this lone album suggests. But with the re-release set, and in such a cool fashion, the music of Bloody Climax will now be heard by a new generation of heavy metal fans as well as old collectors like me! Kudos to Karthago Records then for giving us all a chance to (re)discover this cult recording. Here's hoping the rest of this series proves to be even better!

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