Hard Reviews 4
by Martin Popoff

Various Artists - Another Hair Of The Dog: A Tribute To Nazareth

Here's another from the Lea Hart puppy mill, but hell, there's a small mess of fun, starting with Paul Di'Anno crowling his way through a hiccup-drummed Hair Of The Dog and Samson's lionheart Nicky Moore on the obscure Let Me Be Your Dog. Elsewhere Doogie White is merely OK on pretty solid and very well-produced music tracks. Highlight: Grim Reaper's Steve Grimmett on My White Bicycle, snap-happy, energy flowin' all 'round. Two flaws: one being a few anonymous-sounding versions, a second of towering stupidity: guys covering songs Nazareth covered, TRUE covers, like Piece Of My Heart and Ruby Tuesday. Yes, I know, nice tribute to Nazareth there. Guitar aficionados can play spot the soloist, seven semi-luminaries spread and not specifically credited throughout this 12 track, 45 minute pint-clinker to some of the most formidable volume drinkers in the biz. Do not - I repeat, do not - get under a table with Dan McCafferty or Pete Agnew.
Rating 6

Witchfynde - The Witching Hour

For those who thought it was impossible to capture the grizzled rock magic of the NWOBHM, here comes one of the enigmatic, semi-tragic originals to cloud your mind with the fog of a good few pints. The Witching Hour finds our favourite senior Satan citizens re-recording a bunch of old classics as well as massaging in a few stormy new tracks. First excellent idea was to get a guy named Harry, an old Englishman with an ugly mug, to be the new lead vocalist (don't talk to these guys about lead singer problems), the man being the consummate pensioner metal god, perfect for these middle mayhem metal tunes. Second swell idea is whatever Montalo and Co. did to get that guitar and drum sound. Bloody 'ell, both full-bodied and vicious. The new tracks fit seamlessly (and an old post-Lords Of Sin, non-LP track 'The Other Side' is the hairy, hoary highlight), but it's 'Give 'Em Hell' and the king of all lurch-lucky brew-bashers 'Wake Up Screaming' that really whistle wicked in the dark, Pete "Thud" Surgey and Gra Scorseby finding and defining NWOBHM groove like it was 1982 all over again. Two marks off for not knocking off more new originals.
Rating 8

Hard Reviews Page 5