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Marshall Law - Marshall Law (Reissue)

Marshall Law
Marshall Law (Reissue)
by Lior "Steinmetal" Stein at 27 May 2017, 7:55 PM

Certainly not out of the cellar, but on the other hand, and to my regret, a name that was in a way forgotten in British Heavy Metal. The Birmingham Heavy / Power Metallers MARSHALL LAW might have been out of business since their last album in 2008, yet their legacy of hard to the bone classic Metal remains, at least in my personal consciousness. Thanks to the efforts made by the British label Dissonance Productions, MARSHALL LAW’s self-titled debut album was recently reissued. The album was originally released by Heavy Metal Records dating 1989. As bonus to the original tracklist of the album, the whole 1991’s “Power Crazy” EP was added, featuring ex-PARADISE LOST Lee Morris manning the skins position.

It starts and ends with a full blown straightforwardness, a leathery fist in the face without too much time for the crispy emotional trending, an element that kept the 80s motor running. Even with the clinging hard to the local gods, mainly the steel meets steel of JUDAS PRIEST and the bursting melodious powerhouse of IRON MAIDEN. Both giants metaphorically laid down the grounds for MARSHALL LAW’s existence. On the other hand, the band appeared to had taken quite a lot from the American Metal scene of the time. I will elaborate. The sharp edges of that is heavily introduced in the album might be closer to PRIEST, something on the verge of“Ram It Down” and “Defenders Of The Faith”, however, the tough heaviness zeroed me to early VICIOUS RUMORS, MALICE, some early LIEGE LORD and even the proto Thrash period of AGENT STEEL.

Without a doubt this album is a carving of what Traditional Metal means. It got the hooks within the riffery that set a heavier tone in comparison to the early NWOBHM movement, hooking choruses, which some of them caught fire and blazed with glory, stellar lead guitar action that ruled night and day flaring the scene and an attitude of a decade that is sorely missed. There are a few fillers, I wouldn’t argue about that, yet in general this debut album is seriously underrated. The energized flamboyance classics of “Under the Hammer” and “Screaming” are no less than a Heavy Metal killing machines. “Marshall Law” mastered as a hymn of British Steel while “Future Shock” reimbursed the US Metal sensation that once felt so rich and spectacular. I would also put my thumbs on: “When Will It End?”, “All For Rock” and the Hard Rock / Glam Metal anomaly portrayed “Feel It”. So as you can see, this is an all you can chew within 80s Metal.

Due to the calamity of Metal industry near the end of the 80s, to my surprise, the album’s timing of emergence actually took the band forward other than shutting all systems down like lots of examples, especially from the US. In MARSHALL LAW’s case it was keep going with a lot of looking back. No sellouts here. Maybe it is a British thing to not give up no matter what the bosses say. I believe that you would find enough evidence in their “Power Crazy”, which I would remind you that it is also a part of the release. Get yourself a copy of this classic before it runs out again.


4 Star Rating

1. Armageddon
2. Under the Hammer
3. Rock the Nation
4. Marshall Law
5. Hearts and Thunder
6. Screaming
7. We're Hot
8. Feel It
9. System X
10. Future Shock
11. When Will It End?
12. World Of Madness*
13. Cry Out From The Dark*
14. All For Rock*
15. The Heart Is Rising*
Andy Pyke - Vocals
Andy Southwell - Guitar
Dave Martin - Guitar
Roger Davis - Bass
Mick Donovan - Drums
Lee Morris - Drums*
Record Label: Dissonance Productions


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Edited 23 March 2023

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