For 20 years now the Metal frigate RUNNING WILD is sailing across the seven Metal seas under the rule of Captain Rock'n'Rolf, reason enough for a double CD titled "20 Years In History". The Hamburg based band can look back onto a quite remarkable number of albums now, amongst them quite a few classics, so there definitely is not a lack of material for such a best-of compilation. So 140 minutes might not seem much then, so that for sure some songs that would have deserved to be included here went over board.
Despite the label change from Noise to G.U.N. this best of double pack (via Noise) contains material from all albums, so that newbies into the world of RUNNING WILD get a good package and can get a very good overview over the history so far and shed some light onto the musical evolution of these veterans. But the compilation is not only suited for freshmen and part time RUNNING WILD fans, but also has four tidbits for die hard fans, with the two previously unreleased tracks "Prowling Werewolf" and "Apocalyptic Horsemen" as well as re-recorded versions of "Branded & Exiled" and "Mordor".
The prowl through the past starts with "Prowling Werewolf" and continues with "Genghis Khan" and until the end of the second CD, the title track of their latest studio album "The Brotherhood", one classic follows the other, to name just a few: "Under Jolly Roger", "Port Royal", "Bad To The Bone", "Little Big Horn" on CD 1, on CD 2 "Treasure Island", "Black Hand Inn" or also "Tsar". Even though the last album "The Brotherhood" had been quite some disappointment, "20 Years In History" keeps a really high level of quality all through the two discs.
Many look down on RUNNING WILD as a band that repeats itself, but for one there are bands that fans expect to stay true to themselves and not really change too much and for the other, if you have found a style for yourself, which you are really good in (even though the air gets thinner, if you look at their more recent releases), so why dare big experiments? Anyways, if you can't stand RUNNING WILD anyways, then "20 Years In History" won't change a thing. On the other hand the double CD has turned out to be a really good compilation, which lives up to the achievements of the band. So thumbs up and reef the sails! (Online November 8, 2003)