‘Winds Of Time: The New Wave Of British Heavy Metal 1979-1985’
HNE Recordings Limited/Cherry Red Records
The New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) was an exceptionally fruitful time to be in a band. The punk and heavy metal scenes had spawned this movement and for the metal bands of this time, it meant that the huge surge in popularity saw record companies signing bands left and right. For some of these bands, like Iron Maiden and Def Leppard, it meant a rocket rise to fame and success. However, for most NWOBHM bands, it meant a short-lived success followed by years of struggling, disbandment and obscurity. However, instead of being consigned to the history books, the NWOBHM movement was given a large boost when bands such as Metallica and Megadeth began releasing covers of the NWOBHM songs which inspired them. Since this time, more than enough compilation albums have been released of the NWOBHM movement and the latest one of these is ‘Winds of Time: The New Wave of British HeavyMetal 1979-1985’.
This compilation is a three CD box set and when it comes to NWOBHM, ‘Winds of Time…’ is as definitive an album that anyone can purchase regarding this genre. On this box set, there is no Iron Maiden and Def Leppard, but there are enough big NWOBHM bands such as Diamond Head, Angel Witch, Witchfynde , Saxon and Venom to pull the average heavy metal fan in, but beneath the superficiality of these bands, the listener will find a treasure trove of music, some of these NWOBHM bands which only released a 7” single over a very short time, with the only noticeable missing bands being Blind Fury, Demon and Tank. Unfortunately, not all these recordings are great, there are live and demo versions in which the quality is extremely poor, and this also transposes across to some of the more obscure tracks. This causes the volume to rise and fall with each track and can lead to quite a lot of frustration fixing and changing the volume.
For those looking to find a NWOBHM collection all in one place, or to seriously increase their knowledge of the NWOBHM then there is no better compilation than ‘Winds of Time…’.