Blitzkrieg was formed in 1980 in Leicester and were part of the initial wave of NWOBHM bands alongside the likes Iron Maiden and Venom. They’ve since released ten studio albums and have recently re-released their 2007 venture Theatre of the Damned.
The bands sound falls in line with some of their other contemporaries, having a heavy and quicker tempo sound with nice grit but also keeping it fairly melodic. The first track Theatre of the Damned is a great start to the album as it has some nice headbanging riffs but a nice melodic chorus. The lyrics for this track too are interesting and I think give the song an extra bit of creative flair. This is a theme throughout most of the tracks on this album, the band has a nice sound that is helped by the lyrics being interesting, they aren’t masterful poems but they are thought out enough to add an extra layer to the songs rather than being filler for the instrumentals.
The third song Devil Spawn was also one of my favourites, the song lays done a good riff but it’s the vocals that take the focus as the singers challenge the devil spawn. Even if you don’t care about lyrics it’s a good song to sing too with some pretty badass lines. The song is also split up with a nice breakdown that let the instruments shine. Perhaps the most notable song on the album is Blitzkrieg originally released as a single in 1981 and was then covered by Metallica. Well, the original is just as kick-ass to the cover, It’s a high energy song that maintains a nice rhythm through but contains some great breakdowns throughout as well that help break up the song. It goes from quick and harsh to heavy and slow without being clumsy and the sweeping vocals are a nice cherry on top.
The Vocals by Brian Ross on the album suit the songs excellently and have a clean sound but with quite a lot of power still, so it cuts through the mix nicely. His expressiveness too helps the songs stand out and stops them from sounding like any other metal band, like I said there is a nice amount of creativity and artistic variation with the songs. The guitars on the album too by then members Ken Johnson and Guy Laverick are great, being able to go from quick shredding tempos into thick heavy riffs into roaring triumphant playing. The bass on the album can sometimes be hard to hear in the mix instead adding heaviness to the songs like Into the light do push it into the fore and there are really nice bass riffs at points in the song. Drums on the album are a bit more prominent in their sound, having some really nice rhythms that get your foot tapping. Tortured Souls makes good use of hi-hats and kick drums to really fatten out the sound of the track and makes them stand out without being jarring in the composition.
Having not heard of this ban I’m surprised at how refined their sound and identity is. The songs have a nice blend of melody, rhythm and harshness that’s up there with some of the best. For fans of NWOBHM bands, this is something I’d definitely recommended checking out and giving a listen.
Release Year: 2021
Label: Mighty Music
Reviewed by Billy Poulopoulos