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Havoc - The Grip (7,5/10) - USA - 1986

Genre: Heavy Metal
Label: Steamhammer
Playing time: 35:36
Band homepage: -

Tracklist:

  1. Blazes
  2. Thrasher
  3. Screams
  4. The Grip
  5. The Force Within
  6. Chainsaw
  7. Bullets Of Blood
  8. Son Of Thunder
  9. Hour Of The Dragon
Havoc - The Grip

One of those CDs that have been haunting me ever since the late 80s is the (sadly only) album by American band HAVOC. I always felt attracted, somehow, to the font and the very simple album cover depicted in the ads in the usual Metal 'zines back then. However, the album, originally released via Auburn Records, was nowhere to be found in my general region. At some point in the mid-90s, I discovered the CD version in my favourite second-hand store in Kaiserslautern and had to detain it on grounds of being hell of rare.

All right, it's not really a classic album by any means, but thanks to featuring some songs worth listening to, such as "Thrasher", "The Grip" or "Hour of the Dragon", it did turn out to be a very solid Power Metal release after all. No single song is outright spectacular, but friends of SACRED STEEL during their "Wargods Of Metal" period should absolutely appreciate the melodies found on "The Force Within". Apart from that, if you own CDs by DESTRUCTOR, PREMONITION or HERETIC you shouldn't have any real problems with this album.

"The Grip" features quality riffs en masse, the melody lines are enjoyable as well and the arrangements are at least decent. The shouted choruses do get on my nerves after a while, but much like everything else in life it is a matter of taste. Regardless: if you like slightly speedy US Metal, you should look into getting your hands on this -- just don't pay too much for it.

(Online May 14, 2007)

Falk Kollmannsperger



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