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Stormtrooper – ‘Pride Before A Fall’

posted 2 Oct 2016, 14:26 by Paul Woodward

(Bristol Archive Records)

Review by Woody

This album from Bristol NWOBHM act Stormtrooper is billed as ‘The Lost Album’ as it was originally recorded and intended for release in the early ‘80’s but it’s only now getting an official release. Why it was never released back in the day isn’t overly clear and why it has finally been released in its original form is unclear too. It’s a curiosity piece but I can’t see it having much impact in today’s rock and metal scene.

It’s very of its time stylistically and production wise and while I don’t think the album is anything special had it been released at the height of the NWOBHM scene I really think they would have made a low level splash and in a ‘What If’ world we could be talking about the band as a cult act.

NWOBHM vintage collectors I’m sure will see this album as an essential purchase, but given the obvious retro nature of the album I can only really see music fans who are collecting albums from the past been particularly interested in this album. There is a burgeoning scene of NWOBHM inspired bands at the moment especially in Europe, who utilise modern production values and have a strong following but I can’t see those fans taking to this album.

Old school NWOBHM connoisseurs will revel in the very retro aspects of the album like the prog-tastic keyboards and the lengthy epic musical numbers. I just feel a little underwhelmed by the album which I find a little nondescript and can’t fully understand why it’s been released now and it’s not an album I feel I can get excited about.

There’s lots of popular NWOBHM traits shown throughout the album, some bluesy guitar riffs, galloping rhythms and I can see certain songs appealing to Tygers Of Pan Tang, Saxon and on the lengthy tracks Iron Maiden fans.

The title track ‘Pride Before A Fall’ is probably the most impressive song on the album and the rest of the album struggles to follow it. I think had the band members revisited these songs and re-recorded them and maybe tinkered with some of the elements that haven’t aged well like the spooky prog keyboards which really turn me off this album may have had a greater impact on me but more importantly may have made a bigger splash within the current old school metal scene.

Track Listing: Pride Before A Fall / Battle Of The Eve / In The State In The City / If It Takes A Man A Week To Walk / Bounty Hunter / Still Comin’ Home / Drunken Women Confusion / After Battle

Album Rating: 5/10

Woody’s Essential Track: Pride Before A Fall