Jameson Raid – Raiderstronomy

Rating: 3/5
Distributor/label: Soulfood
Released: 2021
Buy Album: https://www.nuclearblast.de/en/products/tontraeger/cd/cd/jameson-raid-raiderstronomy.html
Band Website: https://www.facebook.com/JamesonRaid99

Band line-up:

Terry Dark – Vocals (lead & backing)
Ian Smith – Guitars
John Ace – Bass
Phil Kimberley – Drums

Tracklisting:

1. Seven Days of Splendour
2. It’s a Crime
3. Catcher in the Rye
4. Hard Lines
5. The Hypnotist
6. The Raid
7. Gettin’ Hotter
8. Straight from the Butchers
9. Seven Days of Splendour (Remix)
10. It’s a Crime (Remix)
11. Catcher in the Rye

Review:

The term Jameson Raid might seem like a phrase only familiar to people who have studied the Boer War, given that this was an incident that led to the British Empire declaring war on the Boers of South Africa, but anyone who loves the New Wave of British Heavy Metal will think of a band who were there at the very beginning but never made it to the level of Priest or Maiden.

As someone who began his obsession with music through the early punk rock and progressive scenes, Jameson Raid has compiled some of their best early tunes on the new compilation “Raiderstonomy”. It takes some of the band’s earliest singles and showcases them in original form and then remixed. This comes in aid of the band’s recent reformation after a 26-year hiatus.

Firstly, if you really like low fidelity rock from the mid to later seventies that has an air of the DIY ethos to is, these guys have you covered. You can hear Terry Dark’s thick regional accent as he sings of the hardships faced by a young man in that era, and as things move on with “It’s a Crime”, “Catcher in the Rye” and “Hard Lines”, you begin feeling some good chords and drums that wouldn’t have looked out of place on a Hawkwind album.

What I feel this record does best, is remind people where their favourite metal genres come from, it is a fine nod to the old days where the odds and ends of rock music were being torn up and rewritten by punks and hippies alike. Old school garage rock, some psychedelia, and bits of blues-rock emanate from these tracks, which are great in original form and have a fine extra weight in their remixes.

Birmingham is the home of metal due to Black Sabbath and their ilk hailing from there, and here we have one of the bands who are quite underrated when it comes to the cornerstones of metal. I think this release, with its original scratchy fidelity and remastered forms, told me that there are a lot of forgotten artists who helped in bringing great genres like NWOBHM to form, but sadly did not make it to the everlasting status of the biggest names.

This is a record to enjoy if you’re new to the NWOBHM sound, or if you fancy a good trip down memory lane to the days where jagged and melodic riffs mixed well on a lo-fi release to tell the world that rock was going through a renaissance period. Very enjoyable.

Review by Demitri Levantis
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