Lightforce – Battlezone – 1987

This was the first full album release from Lightforce but it was self released. I’m not really sure where the line is between a demo and a self released album but anyway I digress. Originally this was released on cassette only but a vinyl version appeared in 2019 courtesy of Soundmass records. It was also included in a 2003 compilation entitled 1986 To 1989. This album has a pretty raw feel which I believe was entirely intentionally. Though this is an early version of Mortification the Lightforce had their own sound and it is a little more commercial. While metal is not one of my preferred styles of music I quite liked the track “Reigning With The King”, I think it cold have been a pretty popular track if it had wider distribution.

Tracklist
1 – Choose To Win – 4:31
2 – Evil Desires – 2:54
3 – Reigning With The King – 5:40
4 – Eyes of Destruction – 5:42
5 – I Won’t Conform – 2:41
6 – The Day Is Near – 2:34
7 – Battlezone – 2:44
8 – Fast Lane – 3:52

Credits
Bass – Steve Rowe
Cover, Layout, Design – Scott Waters
Drums – Errol Willenberg
Guitar – Cameron Hall
Vocals, Keyboards – Steve Johnson

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Lightforce – Mystical Thieves – 1989

In researching this album I was surprised by the polar opposite reviews I read. It was either loved or hated.

The general consensus was that this was a jumping off point for Steve Rowe who later went on to be a member of the far more popular Mortification.

My take on the album is that the mix was horrible. It feels like the engineer was trying to give the album a Hard Rock sound when in reality it was a Heavy Metal/Thrash album, leaning closer to Thrash.

I was not impressed with the vocals either but that wasn’t the fault of the mix. That said the album does have a spot in the genre so some will probably love this album.

Track Listing:
1 – Mystical Thieves – 8:05
2 – Crossfire – 4:15
3 – City Streets – 4:35
4 – Metal Missionary – 5:25
5 – Children Of Sorrow – 3:54
6 – Searching – 5:30
7 – Fast Lane – 3:52
8 – Babylon – 7:00

Credits:
Artwork [Cover] – Jan Alphic, John Alphic
Backing Vocals [Backup Grunts, Groans And Squeals] – Mark (B.B) Hamilton
Bass [Bass Grinding], Backing Vocals [Backup Grunts] – Steve Rowe
Drums, Backing Vocals [Backup Grunts] – Errol Willenburg
Engineer – John Bosua
Engineer [Assistant] – Andrew Horne, David Asender, Mark Donaldson
Graphics – Mike Maxwell
Guitar [Guitar Abuse], Backing Vocals [Backup Grunts] – Murray Adams
Keyboards, Wind [Lead] – Gary Shepherd
Lead Vocals, Backing Vocals – Steve Johnson
Management – Allan Thomas
Photography By – Colin Mann, Natalie Smith
Producer – John Bosua, Lightforce

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Various – The Axemen – 1988

This is a 1988 sampler from Pure Metal Records (a division of Refuge Music Group). It features some of the best heavy metal bands of the late 80’s.

Track Listing:
1 – Whitecross – Shakedown – 4:13
2 – Bride – Hell No – 3:50
3 – Saint – Returning – 4:45
4 – Force 3 – Warrior Of Light – 5:32
5 – Lightforce – Babylon – 6:54
6 – Jerusalem – Covered By Blood – 3:34
7 – The Daniel Band – Party In Heaven – 2:57
8 – Rosanna’s Raiders – Serve Someone – 4:04
9 – Novella – Running Home – 4:49
10 – Scarlet Red – You Live Fast – 4:46
11 – Bjorn Stigsson – Come Together – 2:59

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