A very apt title for an album befitting the turbulent career of UK veteran NWOBHM stalwarts Weapon UK. In an ideal world I would be able to call them by their original name Weapon, which is what they were known as when I first saw them support Motorhead in 1980 but just as they were about to release Rising From The Ashes, an American band of the same name demanded them to change it so Weapon UK it came to be. Ironically they formed after Weapon UK and have now split up!
So after a lengthy hiatus, Rising From The Ashes has now been released and has certainly been worth waiting for with 11 tracks of melodic hard rock/metal and a bonus track featuring the original line up. The band produced the album themselves and have given it a very raw, live feel with the choruses sounding big and the hooks are in your face akin to a more ballsy Def Leppard. The NWOBHM threw up a melting pot of different styles and Weapon UK always had a sense of melody underpinning the big riffs. The album begins with ‘Prelude (The Awakening), a call to battle type atmospheric intro to ‘Ride The Mariah which pounds along like a laid back Judas Priest. It features one of many huge riffs on the album from Jeff Summers, one of two founder members in Weapon UK, the other being lead vocalist Danny Hynes who still has a strong set of pipes after almost thirty years since the band came to be. The melodic guitar solo midway builds and builds and just goes to show that you don’t have to play at 100mph to get your point across.
The song sets the standard for the rest of the album with highlights being following number ‘Fountain Of Paradise’. Catchy hard rock at it’s very best built on a crunching riff and a chorus that will have you singing it for days. The early UFO type riff of ‘Warrior’ features a powerful lead vocal that grabs the listener from the off as the song continues to a crushing end. ‘Ready 4 U’ suggested a commercial song but I could not be more wrong as the massive intro riff gives way to drum driven heavy rock. ‘Burning Skies’ is a thudding riffer with chiming chords pinning it down with some neat layered vocals in the choruses.
The poignant intro to ‘Alamein’ befits the subject of the song, a huge ballad with Danny giving his most powerful vocal on the album. ‘Blood Soaked Rock’ is easily the heaviest track here, a real headbanger with a killer chorus. Closing track ‘Killer Instinct’ was recorded by the original 1980 Weapon line up and ends the album in style. The bobbling bass guitar intro brings to mind ‘Peace Sells by Megadeth as it goes into a gritty rocker with catchy harmonies and fluid guitar solos.
Weapon UK band line up :-
Danny Hynes – Lead Vocals.
Jeff Summers – Guitar/vocals.
P.J Phillips – Bass guitar/vocals. (Baz Downes on ‘Killer Instinct’)
Ian Sweeting – Drums. (Bruce Boland on ‘Killer Instinct’)
Album track listing :-
Prelude (The Awakening).
Ride The Mariah.
Fountain Of Paradise.
Ready 4 U.
Blood Soaked Rock.