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Black Hawk - Straight To Hell

Black Hawk
Straight To Hell
by Jonathan Maphet at 08 December 2010, 10:12 AM

BLACK HAWK has been around a very long time. They were formed in 1981. They are a quintet from northern Germany. Their style is simply listed as Heavy Metal. I would say they are traditional Heavy Metal. Don’t think they are a parody band just because they have a song entitled “Bad Pussy”. No, it’s not about a poorly behaved cat, and it’s not about that particular part of a female’s anatomy either. It’s about a woman as a whole. “She is a bad pussy”: note that it doesn’t she has one, only that she is one. Not exactly something to take seriously, but if you hear the song you will know they aren’t making a mockery of things either. They have a decent version of SAXON’s “Crusader”. They also have a song called “Back From Hell” which certainly is a serious song. This is true Heavy Metal. There are no keyboards or choirs. What you hear is what is listed as the instruments on the album and not anything else.

The song “Crystal Shark” is a short but very fast instrumental that shows off the chops of the drummer and the lead guitarist. I would have liked it to last a bit longer, but it is still a good song. “Isolation” is also a very fast song, but it has vocals and is my favorite track off the album. The sound on this track reminds me of IRON SAVIOR and that is a very good thing. Please note that though they were formed in 1981 they only have a one full album and the rest are demos. I have no explanation as to why there is such a small amount of material from these guys. I can only think this is not a full time project, or that the members also work in side projects. It is a shame really. They are good enough to release much more music than they have. I wouldn’t mind hearing the demos. Perhaps they simply weren’t good enough to warrant full length releases until now.

The vocals are clean and the guitars have a good tone and a nice distortion to them. The drumming is solid and only “Bad Pussy” is a stinker (No pun intended). You can tell the vocalist has a German accent but it doesn’t take away from the vocals at all. Udo Bethke does a very good job on this album. I would imagine he wouldn’t have too much trouble finding an outfit that is more prolific that he can make an actual living off of. You never know with these bands. “Straight to Hell” could be the spark they have been waiting for. I can see them on tour as an opening act to a larger band. They deserve a shot at the club circuit at the very least. These guys should be heard. Don’t let the fact that they have been around for almost thirty years with only releasing one album fool you. They have what it takes in my opinion to do just fine on their own. Pure Steel Records has done a good job of finding obscure bands and giving them a chance to thrive.

Overall, if you like the old school fast tempo Heavy Metal of the 80’s, you will like BLACK HAWK. I know I did. Hopefully they will go on tour soon in support of this album. It would be very interesting to hear them in a live setting. The production is very good as well. I can’t wait to see what they do next.

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
  1. In Hell
  2. Isolation
  3. Shoot Shoot
  4. Straight To Hell
  5. Seven Years of Pain
  6. Crystal Shark Pt.1
  7. Crusader
  8. Nothing To Lose
  9. The Last Mile
  10. Stranger (In This Land)
  11. Bad Pussy
  12. Guardians Of The Night
Lineup:
Udo Bethke - Vocals
Thorsten Bettge – Guitars
Wolfgang Tewes – Guitars
Michael Weickenberg – Bass
Niko Schaper – Drums
Record Label: Pure Steel Records
     


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