||MARK TAYLOR'S BIG CITY NIGHTS
'Long Stick Goes Boom - Live From Da House Of Rust'
Swiss rollers Krokus have been going for almost forty years now, but it wasn't until Maltese singer Marc Storace joined the band for their fourth album, 'Metal-Rendezvous', in 1980 that the band were recognized on the international market, especially in Europe and the UK.
The few years that followed were arguably the pinnacle years of Heavy Metal history with Judas Priest, Iron Maiden and AC/DC all releasing classic albums and Krokus were right up there with them riding the wave with the hard hitting albums 'Hardware', 'One Vice At A Time' and 'Headhunter' all denting the charts on both sides of the Atlantic.
However whilst the aforementioned bands went on to become global household names the spotlight was turned off for Krokus after a split in the ranks and ill advised cover versions from the American record company to follow the success that Quiet Riot had with 'Cum On Feel The Noize'.
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Whilst a cover of Sweet's 'Ballroom Blitz' gained them some new American fans, it totally alienated their strong European fan base and a bog standard cover of Alice Cooper's 'School's Out' a couple of years later from the below par album 'Change Of Address' in 1986 did further damage to the foundations of Krokus.
Various guises of Krokus have continued throughout the years with both Marc Storace and guitarist Fernado von Arb steering the reigns, although both had taken separate breaks from the band themselves.
Krokus finally found their mojo again when in 2008 the classic line up of Storace, von Arb along with Chris von Rohr, Mark Kohler and dummer Freddy Steady reunited resulting in the 'Hoodoo' album a couple of years later. A welcome return to form.
Freddy Steady didn't hang around for too long with his place now taken by Flavio Mezzodi on the stool and one time member Mandy Meyer rejoining the ranks for last years 'Dirty Dynamite' opus meaning that just like Iron Maiden, Krokus now have three guitarists in the band which now has been documented on this very fine live album.
'Long Sticks Goes Boom - Live From Da House Of Rust' is the third live album in the career of Krokus, but this is the definitive release captured in front of an enthusiastic audience in their home country of Switzerland last August.
Opening with the immortal heads down classic of 'Long Stick Goes Boom' with the opening lines of "He don't know about 69", this is how true Heavy Metal should sound. You'll be reaching for the air guitar before the chorus kicks in, although I could have done without the little tribute to The Who towards the end as this track is a full on classic in it's own right.
More recent material like 'Hallelujah Rock 'N Roll', 'Dog Song' and 'Hoodoo Woman' ride neatly along with older firm favourites such as 'Bedside Radio' and 'Heatstrokes' while the ballad 'Screaming In The Night' is a timely reminder of how big Krokus could've been and even the latter day 'Hellraiser' is a blast with this line up performing it.
For novices this is a good introduction into the world of Krokus and older fans may want to check out their last two albums after hearing this. For those who are going to this year's Hard Rock Hell festival where Krokus will be playing a long overdue UK date, you're going to be in for a treat on this evidence. Krokus will make your long stick go boom. It could get messy.
Marc Storace and Chris von Rohr recently spoke to MetalTalk's Mark Taylor and you can read that interview right here.
You can win a fully signed copy of Krokus 'Long Sticks Goes Boom - Live From Da House Of Rust' by entering MetalTalk's competition right here.