Fireworks

Battleaxe - 'Burn This Town' Hot

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Written by Central Electronic Brain     May 13, 2014    
 
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The 30th anniversary re-release will once again show to the world that 'Burn This Town' is one hell of an album.

It's a constant head-scratcher among fans of NWOBHM as to why certain bands didn't make it beyond the relatively low position they did. Sunderland's Battleaxe produced one of the greatest debut albums of the scene and yet will forever be remembered for the awful album cover that accompanied it (pls. have a look at the second cover), rather than the music it contained.

This, the 30th anniversary re-release by Steamhammer/SPV, will once again show to the world that 'Burn This Town' is one hell of an album. It gets off to a typically breathless start with 'Ready To Deliver' kicking down the doors and you'd be hard pressed to find a more fitting opening title. It's brash and ballsy... Battleaxe kicks ass and takes names.

Fireworks - The Ultimate Magazine For Melodic Rock Music

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The charging 'Runnin' Outta Time' is the highlight of a hard rocking collection that never lets up. All pumping bass-lines and a simple, crunching guitar riff – basic stuff but who said Heavy Metal needs to be complicated? The sleazy 'Dirty Rocker' bears down on you with its beery breath and tales of a woman you wouldn't take home to your mother (wink, wink).

It would have been great to have a re-mastered version but that unmistakeable crackle sound is as much a part of the NWOBHM experience as Steve Hardy's blazing guitars and Dave King's impressive vocals. Ian Thompson only played drums on one studio album with Battleaxe and it's quite the legacy he leaves; a rock-steady blast of head-banging chaos. The re-release comes with added BBC Radio 1 sessions from 1983 (with drums by Ian McCormack) which is a nice addition to the collection.

If 'Burn This Town' had a scent it would be leather jackets, old denim, beer and petrol fumes. Get the fire started.

Dan Bond

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