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'My Way'
(Nuclear Blast)
Out Now

Johnny Main

johnny main


The Rage story begins way back in 1984 in the German city of Herne, where bass guitarist and vocalist Peter "Peavy" Wagner formed the first line up of the band, under the name Avenger.

It was later in 1984 when the band released their debut album, 'Prayers of Steel' which was swiftly followed by an EP titled 'Depraved To Black' in August 1985. Avenger changed their name and became Rage in 1986 just before they inked a deal with Noise Records with whom the band released the first official Rage album, 'Reign Of Fear' in May of that year.

May 1987 saw the release of the 'Execution Guaranteed' album which also was then followed by the bands first official video for the track, 'Down By Law' amid a number of line up changes within the band. With the new line up settled in, the 1988 album 'Perfect Man' was released, giving the band their first hit in the form of the single, 'Don't Fear The Winter'. The rest of the year was seen out with the band supporting Running Wild, U.D.O., Motörhead and Saxon amongst others.

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It wasn't until the 1992 album 'Trapped' was released that rage broke into the international market and this success was to be repeated with the follow up album 'The Missing Link', which turned out to be the bands most successful release. The success was slightly marred by another series of line up changes which resulted in Wagner deciding to up the guitar quotient in the band from one to two, creating a four piece line up for the first time.

1994 saw the band celebrate their tenth anniversary in style with the release of '10 Years In Rage' which was sadly not well promoted by the record company. The band signed a new deal with Gun Records the same year and released the breakthrough album 'Black In Mind', which was followed by a world tour bringing the band to a higher level and today the album is still seen as one of the classic power metal albums ever. This was followed by the landmark 1996 album 'Lingua Mortis' – the first album by a metal act, where the band had collaborated with a classical symphonic orchestra.

More line up changes dogged the band and in 1999 the band reverted to a trio once again. 2001 saw the release of the 'Welcome To The Other Side' album which was followed in subsequent years by 'Unity' and 'Soundchaser', both of which were positively received by fans and critics. The bands 20th anniversary in 2004 was celebrated when they went out on the 'From The Cradle To The Stage' tour from which the band recorded the live DVD and album of the same name.


In 2006, Rage again collaborated with an orchestra, this time from Minsk, Belarus that performed on the 'Speak Of The Dead' album which was the last to feature their current drummer. With a temporary drummer recruited to cover live shows as the band Europe with the orchestra throughout 2007, with their performance at Wacken Open Air in August in front of 80,000 fans was recorded for a potential DVD release.

Rage entered the studio in October 2011 to begin the recordings of their 21st album, appropriately named '21', as well as releasing rare songs and demo on the 'Soundchaser Archives, 30th anniversary' release. A tour followed that was completed in early 20145 when Wagner announced that further line up changes were coming – though he didn't announce the new members, guitarist Marcos Rodriguez and drummer Vassilios Maniatopoulos until June of that year.

With so many line up changes in the band, it's difficult to get any kind of feel for where the band are now, and this EP is the best representation of where the band's going – a small digestible chunk of metal that really distils the essence of the band into an EP with a running time of around 18 minutes.

Title track 'My Way' is a typically fast one which is both the first and last track with the former being the English version and the latter being sung in Spanish. This might be only an EP, but there's no let up in the pace and no time for slushy ballads. The drums from Maniatopoulos and guitar from Rodriguez blast out in a glorious display of pomp whilst Wagner gives everything in his vocal performance.

The remaining two tracks are both re-recordings from 1995's 'Black In Mind' album in the form of the title track and 'Sent By The Devil'. It's important here to understand that there's nothing materially wrong with the original versions but these new versions sound far superior with the new band members at the helm. On 'Black In Mind', Wagner's vocals have a more vicious edge to them whilst Maniatopoulos drives the track onwards with a solid beat at the back whilst the razor sharp guitar riff has so much more to it than the original. The tempo hasn't changed much either, but Wagner still manages to equip himself well with the wordy lyrics despite the extraordinary tempo.

'Sent By The Devil' too, is another frantic track that benefits from a refresh. The long guitar orientated intro sounds fresh whilst Wagners vocal tend to be further down the mix than some of the other tracks here, but the addition of some backing vocals during the chorus adds a bit of extra power to the lyrics. It's another frantic dash from start to finish with Wagner barely having time to draw breath but without a doubt it's my favourite track here and just typifies the Rage way of performance.

Top marks all round, and it just makes me want a new full length album from the boys even more.

You can see the official video for 'My Way' here:

You can see Rage live here:

Friday 10th June – Loreley Freilichtbühne, St. Goarshausen

'My Way' Track Listing:

My Way (English Version)
Back In The Mind (2015 Version)
Sent By The Devil (2015 Version)
My Way (Spanish Version)

Rage are:
Peter Wagner – Bass Guitar/Vocals
Marcos Rodriguez –Guitar/Vocals
Vassilios Maniatopoulos – Drums/Vocals

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