Lord Lyall and Urgency – This Heart is Occupied – 1986

Lord Lyall and Urgency were a Nashville band that were well known locally. This EP was their only known recording and it was released in very limited numbers by Lamb Records. The band are good musicians, the vocals are good, the lyrics are good, but the production left a bit to be desired. It’s a fun Pop sound that I would have liked to have heard more of with a better engineer and producer.

Tracklist
1 – Run With Me – 3:24
2 – Standing on His Promises – 3:18
3 – Overcomers – 3:46
4 – This Heart is Occupied – 4:12
5 – Only You – 2:43
6 – Wake Up – 4:27

Credits
Band – Lord Lyall, Norman Sinback, Rose Maihiot, Mark Shipsey
Producers – Chuck Childers & Mark Baldwin

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Messiah Prophet – Master of the Metal – 1986

The second offering from Messiah Prophet turned up the quality. They dropped the “Band” from their name for this album and were the first release on the new label “Pure Metal” which was a new Metal oriented subsidiary label of Refuge Music Group. During the recording of the album Dean Pellman left the band and was replaced with bassist Joe Shirk. This was the last album for the band. There was a 1996 release using the band name but none of the members of the original band were in the new band. It was a complicated story as to how that came to be but apparently the whole idea was a disaster so I didn’t bother figuring it out.

Tracklist
1 – Hit And Run – 4:20
2 – Master Of The Metal – 5:01
3 – For Whom Does The Bell Toll – 4:15
4 – Fear No Evil – 6:53
5 – Heavy Metal Thunder – 5:30
6 – The Friend – 3:43
7 – Battle Cry – 6:29
8 – Voice That’s Calling – 7:02

Credits
Art Direction, Layout – Jeff Spencer
Bass Guitar, Vocals – Joe Shirk
Drums, Percussion, Vocals – David Thunder
Engineer – Bill Grabowski, Scott Berger
Executive Producer – Ray Nenow, Raymond Fletcher, Robert W. Spangler Jr.
Lead Guitar, Acoustic Guitar, Vocals – Andy Strauss
Lead Vocals – Charlie Clark
Photography – Terry Wild
Producer, Arranged By – Bill Grabowski
Rhythm Guitar, Vocals, Lead Vocals – Brian Nicarry

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright (p) – Pure Metal Records
Copyright (c) – Pure Metal Records
Copyright (c) – Stone Roller Music
Distributed By – Refuge Music Group
Distributed By – Creative Music Canada
Recorded At – Susquehanna Sound
Mixed At – Susquehanna Sound
Mastered At – Masterdisk
Remastered At – Funkhouser Mastering

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Truth – Departure – 1978 – Full Album

This was 1 of 2 releases in 1978 by Truth with the other being a Christmas album which you will likely hear come Christmas time. Truth were so dedicated to getting albums out that it is difficult for me to really characterize one album as being different from the rest. There’s a little 70’s Funk, a little Jazz, and even a Reggae sounding song. If you’re already a fan of this band / choir you’ll love this album.

Tracklist
1 – Love, It Comes In All Colors – 2:25
2 – The World Didn’t Give It To Me (And THe World Can’t Take It Away) – 2:45
3 – Miracle Of Jesus – 2:40
4 – Jesus Is Lord Of The Way I Feel – 3:14
5 – He Is The Music – 3:26
6 – Perfect Peace – 3:52
7 – Ordinary People – 3:45
8 – Countin’ The Days – 3:26
9 – I Just Feel Like Something Good Is About To Happen – 3:19
10 – Revived – 3:11

Credits
Artwork By [Cover], Illustration [Inside] – Jim Lee
Design Concept – Greg Golden
Drums – Bob Nickerson
Electric Bass – Eddie Anders
Engineer – Warren Peterson
Engineer [Assistant] – Brent King
Guitar – Tim Frantz
Keyboards – Benny Key
Layout – Kimberly Williams
Management [Business Manager] – Nancy Anders
Mastered By – Glenn Meadows, Mack Evans
Percussion – Garner Fielding
Photography By – Spottswood Studios
Producer – Bob MacKenzie
Technician [Sound] – Mark Young
Trombone – Don Wolf
Trumpet – Craig Garrett, Larry Meregillano
Vocals – Art Ortiz, Bob VanderMaten, Ginger Nickerson, Joleen VanderMaten, Lily Helm, Steve Green
Woodwind – Paul Stewart

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright (p) – Paragon Records
Distributed By – Word, Inc.
Recorded At – Sound Stage Studios
Mastered At – Masterfonics

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Tonio K. – Romeo Unchained – 1986

This was Tonio K’s 4th solo album and many believe it to be his best. It was his first on What? Records which was an short lived experiment by both A&M Records and Word Records. It has a solid 80’s Pop sound but not the cheesy radio sound. Instead it was original and very well written. The album was packed with talent including, Charlie Sexton, T-Bone Burnett, David Mansfield, and Tim Chandler among others. It had 2 singles, “I Handle Snakes” and “Romeo Loves Jane. Unfortunately neither did overly well on the charts.

Tracklist
1 – True Confessions – 3:40
2 – Perfect World – 4:12
3 – Romeo And Jane – 3:46
4 – You Belong With Me – 4:50
5 – Impressed – 4:24
6 – I Handle Snakes – 3:36
7 – Emotional War Games – 3:53
8 – Living Doll – 3:44
9 – You Don’t Belong Here – 5:51
10 – You Will Go Free – 6:37

Credits
Art Direction, Layout – Tim Alderson
Backing Vocals – Rick Neigher, T-Bone Burnett
Bass – David Miner, Eric Gotthelf, Phil Chen, Rick Neigher, Tim Chandler
Coordinator [Production Coordinator] – Penny Payne
Design Concept [Visual Concepts], Photography By – Linda Myers
Drum Programming – Rick Neigher, T-Bone Burnett
Drums – Burleigh Drummond, Freddy Alwag, Ron Aston
Engineer – Billy Taylor, Joe Chiccarelli, Larold Rebhun, Mark Heard, Nick Van Maarth, Rick Neigher
Engineer [Assistant Engineering] – Carolyn Collins, Joe Borja, Judy Clapp, Peter Doell, Steve Himelfarb
Guitar – Billy Steele, Charlie Sexton, Daryl Caraco, Nick Van Maarth, Peter Banks, Rick Neigher, T-Bone Burnett, Tonio K.
Horns – Little Effort, Phil Kenzie
Management – Gary Heaton Management
Mandocello, Violin – David Mansfield
Mandolin [Mandocello], Violin – David Mansfield
Mastered By – Bob Ludwig
Mixed By – Ed Thacker (tracks: A5, B3, B4), Joe Chiccarelli (tracks: A1 to A4, B1, B2)
Other [Assistant Engineering] – Milton
Other [Cover Girl] – Lisa Taylor
Percussion – Burleigh Drummond, Efrain Toro
Synthesizer – Bob Rose, Dave Aston, David Lewis, Rick Neigher
Technician [Productive Trouble-Shooting] – T-Bone Burnett
Vocals [Featured Vocalist] – Tonio K.

Companies, etc.
Produced For – Vogue Productions (2)
Recorded At – Lawrence Welk’s Champagne Recorders, Hollywood, CA.
Recorded At – Baby’O Recorders
Recorded At – Eldorado Recording Studios
Recorded At – Cherokee Studios
Recorded At – Hitman Studios
Recorded At – Fingerprint Recorders
Recorded At – Redwing Studios
Mixed At – Capitol Studios
Mastered At – Masterdisk
Pressed By – Electrosound Group Midwest, Inc.
Record Company – What? Records
Manufactured By – A&M Records, Inc.
Distributed By – A&M Records, Inc.

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Vector – Please Stand By – 1985

This was the second album from Vector. It was still on Exit Records and was distributed by A&M Records. This album could be argued as a secular album on a Christian label but Vector was a Christian band. The difference was that they didn’t write “preachy” songs and one had to actually listen to the lyrics to see where they were going with them. This album was as good as their first and they continued their great new wave sound.

Tracklist
1 – Hear What I Say – 3:45
2 – Fallen Star – 4:27
3 – Running To The Memory – 4:09
4 – How Many Times – 3:38
5 – Scottish Coast – 3:08
6 – Surrender – 4:55
7 – Dance – 3:27
8 – I Can’t Help Falling In Love – 3:56
9 – America – 4:11

Credits
Drums, Drums [Synth], Percussion, Backing Vocals, Concept By [Cover] – Bruce Spencer
Executive-Producer – Mary Neely
Guitar, Guitar [Synth], Lead Vocals, Backing Vocals – Jim Abegg
Illustration, Design [Graphic] – Marty Gessler
Lead Vocals, Bass, Bass [Synth], Backing Vocals – Steve Griffith
Photography By – Gerry McIntrye
Producer, Recorded By, Keyboards – Chuck Wild
Recorded By – Daryl Zachman
Recorded By [Additional] – Jeffrey Lesser

Companies, etc.
Phonographic Copyright (p) – Exit Records
Copyright (c) – Exit Records
Manufactured By – A&M Records, Inc.
Distributed By – A&M Records, Inc.
Recorded At – Sangre Studios
Pressed By – Electrosound Los Angeles – Δ27035

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Russ Taff – Medals – 1985

This is Russ Taff’s second solo album and many consider it to be one of the best Christian albums of the mid 80’s. It received the Dove award for Pop/Contemporary Album of the Year in 1986 and rose to #2 on the Billboard Christian Albums chart. This album was recorded with some of the top Studio musicians of the time including, Dann Huff, Michael Landau, Nathan East, Robbie Buchanan, Tommy Funderburk, and Bill Champlin. One of the top cuts, “I’m Not Alone” was written by Paul Janz of Deliverance fame. All in all a good pop sound album that deserves at least one listen even if the Russ Taff name spooks you.

Tracklist
1 – Vision – 4:09
2 – I’m Not Alone – 4:19
3 – Medals – 4:43
4 – Not Gonna Bow – 4:11
5 – Here I Am – 4:11
6 – I’ve Come This Far – 5:28
7 – Silent Love – 4:45
8 – How Much It Hurts – 4:05
9 – Rock Solid – 4:08
10 – God Only Knows – 4:34

Credits
Backing Vocals – Bill Champlin (tracks: A1, A2, A3, A4, B2, B3), Carmen Twitty (tracks: A3, B1, B4, B5), Harry Browning (tracks: A3), Lynn Nichols (tracks: A3), Russ Taff (tracks: A1 to A4, B4), Tamara Champlin (tracks: A1, A2, A4), Tata Vega (tracks: A3, B1, B4. B5), Tommy Funderburk
Bass – Nathan East (tracks: A1, A3, B1, B4, B5), Neil Stubenhaus (tracks: A2, A4, A5 B2, B3)
Drums – Paul Leim
Electric Guitar – Dann Huff, Michael Landau (tracks: A2 to B5), Paul Jackson, Jr. (tracks: A1, B1)
Keyboards – Robbie Buchanan (tracks: A2, A4, B1, B2, B5)
Percussion – Lenny Castro (tracks: A2 to B5)
Saxophone – Larry Williams (tracks: A2, A4, B5)
Scat – Tata Vega (tracks: B1, B4)
Synthesizer – James Newton Howard (tracks: A1, A2, A4), Rhett Lawrence (tracks: B4), Robbie Buchanan

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Sacred Fire – Sacred Fire – 1986

This was the one and only album from Sacred Heart. It was released on Star Song records, a sister company to Sparrow records. It is not a well known album and I don’t think sold well. The album has some questionable production which may be why there wasn’t a subsequent album. In reality the songwriting was good and the band were good musicians but in my opinion the album lacked a direction that may have been a result of poor production. That said I enjoyed the album but it is a bit of a mix of styles. Point of trivia, Sacred Heart were the backup band for Leslie Phillips when she opened for Petra on the Beat the System Tour.

Tracklist
1 – Nowhere To Hide – 3:47
2 – Come Out Of The Night – 3:38
3 – Heaven’s Love – 4:18
4 – Hot Fire – 3:36
5 – Waiting For The King – 4:28
6 – Don’t Turn Away – 3:42
7 – Quest Of Faith – 4:25
8 – You Are – 4:07
9 – Second Chance – 3:35
10 – Sacred Fire – 4:42

Credits
Acoustic Guitar – George Small
Backing Vocals – Charles Bass, Cris Bass, Joe Clayton, Joey Powers, Martin Bass, Terry Labolito
Bass Guitar – Richard Price
Drums – Rod Cali
Engineer – Alan Douches
Engineer [Assistant] – Glen Marchese
Guitar – Dean Harrington
Harmonica – Dean Harrington
Keyboards – Roger Lowe
Lead Vocals – Jimmy Bennett
Mastered By – Tom Coyne
Mixed By – Rod O’Brien
Percussion – Bernardo Dippolito, Dean Harrington, Jimmy Bennett, Rod Cali
Performer [Sacred Fire Is] – Dean Harrington, Jimmy Bennett*, Richard Price, Rod Cali, Roger Lowe
Producer – Dean Harrington, Tony Davilio
Synthesizer [Programming] – Dean Harrington, Roger Lowe

Companies, etc.
Recorded At – Grandslam Studios
Mixed At – Grandslam Studios
Mastered At – Frankford/Wayne Recording Labs

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Various ‎– Underground Metal 2 – 1989

This was the followup sampler to Underground Metal 1. It actually has much more unreleased material on it so it’s a treat to listen to.

Tracklist
1 – Zion – Kick In The Gates – 3:10
2 – Phil Accardi’s Chalice – Victim Of The Night – 4:50
3 – Knightriot – Kiss The Black – 4:20
4 – Image – Lost – 2:55
5 – Ironwrath – The Stranger – 7:50
6 – Remnant – Can’t You See – 3:53
7 – Final Warning – Listen – 5:35
8 – Xalt – Dark War – 4:55
9 – Thresher – Apocalypse Prepare – 8:12

Track Origins (Album)
Zion – Kick In The Gates (Thunder From The Mountain)
Phil Accardi’s Chalice – Victim Of The Night (Take Control)
Knightriot – Kiss The Black (Speak No Evil Demo)
Image – Lost (Unreleased)
Ironwrath – The Stranger (Unreleased)
Remnant – Can’t You See (Unreleased)
Final Warning – Listen (Unreleased)
Xalt – Dark War (Dark War)
Thresher – Apocalypse Prepare (Totally Possessed Demo)

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Björn Stigsson – Together With Friends – 1989

This is Björn Stigsson’s lone solo album of the 80’s. Prior to this album he was with Leviticus and after this project he started a band called XT. This album is Heavy Metal primarily but there are a couple straight up Rock tunes. There are 2 real standout tracks on this album for me. First is “Come On” which is a straight out quality Rock & Roll tune. The other one that grabbed my ear’s attention was “It’s Alright” which is sung by Tina Spångberg. Her vocals are fantastic and it’s a pity that I can’t find anything else she ever recorded.

Tracklist
1 – Free – 1:04
2 – Come On – 5:08
3 – Lovin’ My Woman – 3:03
4 – I’m Gonna Rock – 2:29
5 – It’s Alright – 6:12
6 – Way Of Living – 4:02
7 – Stand Up – 4:00
8 – Come Together – 3:00
9 – Majestic In Power – 3:13
10 – King Of Glory – 5:02
11 – Here It Comes – 3:45
12 – I’m Free – 5:45

Credits
Bass – Håkan Andersson
Drums – Kjell Andersson
Guitar – Björn Stigsson
Keyboards – Dan Fernström, Dan Tibell
Lead Guitar – Harry Kay (tracks: B2)
Lead Vocals – Peo Pettersson, Sonny Larsson, Tina Spångberg
Producer – Peo Pettersson
Saxophone – Håkan Norling (tracks: A5)

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Debby Boone – Choose Life – 1985

This was the 8th album from Debbie Boone. For this album she turned to Michael and Stormie Omartian for most of the songs. Michael also produced and performed on the album. The album has a significant Pop sound that we weren’t used to from Debby. There are still several good worship oriented songs however if that’s what you are looking for. This album reached #7 in the Contemporary Christian music charts helped I’m sure by the Pop feel of the album.

Tracklist
1 – The Time Is Now – 4:22
2 – Pressure Points – 4:18
3 – Teach Me How To Love – 4:13
4 – When I Accepted You – 4:00
5 – Delight In Him – 3:53
6 – Choose Life – 4:17
7 – The Heart Of The Matter – 5:50
8 – Right For You – 4:19
9 – Song Of Deliverance – 3:54
10 – The Lord Is So Good – 3:14

Credits
Backing Vocals – Dara Bernard, Khaliq Glover, Terry Williams
Bass – Abraham Laboriel (tracks: A5), Joe Chemay, Nathan East
Concertmaster – Assa Drori
Design – Stan Evenson Design Inc.
Drums – Paul Liem
Engineer [Second Engineer] – Larry Fergusson
Engineer, Mixed By – John Guess
Guitar – Michael Landau
Photography By – Sue Choi
Piano – Marty Goetz (tracks: B5)
Producer, Arranged By, Keyboards, Percussion, Backing Vocals – Michael Omartian
Production Manager [Production Coordinator] – Ronnie Puccinelli
Programmed By [Yamaha Dx-7 Programs] – Erik Persing
Soloist [Sax Solos] – Gary Herbig
Vocals [Duet] – Michael Omartian (tracks: B3)

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