Yes NWOBHM fans. Paralex are back! Surely one of the best bands form the good old days not to have scribbled on a huge multi-album deal. Yes, so many bands back then and not all of them could emerge from the pack. However when you hear Paralex you will scratch your head with wonder how it didn’t work out for them back in the early 1980s.
All they left behind back then was a three track EP. Then they were gone. Now, over three decades later, they give us Key to a Thousand Doors. This is the band (all members of Paralex in the 70s/80s at one point or another) getting back together to re-record songs which only previously existed as demos and the like.
A marvellous, marvellous listen it is. Paralex demonstrate what magnificent chops and song writing abilities they had and how they stood out (for me at least) from the majority of their peers.
Not just turn it up to eleven and try to play faster and faster. Yes – the rifferama is brutal. But it is also wide in range from that brutality to chopping to slashing to Machine Gun to fast to slow sometimes all within one song. Variety is the spice of a good Paralex song……
Check out the smokin’ twin guitars. How they churn out the riffs and power chords and trade off when the solos start to fly.
The CD opens with that old White Lightening three track EP showing what a raw talent they had “back in the day”. Contrast that with the re-recorded versions which follow. Excellent.
The re-recorded demos etc. are even better. Check out the rat-at-at-at machine gun style of Dogfight. You can see the planes meandering around the skies in your mind’s eye. Master of the Skies not dissimilar.
Lionheart another highlight. A huge song. As is Rock the Force. Hard as anything with an anthemic feel. Your fist will pump along to the chorus. We Are Not The First is all riffs and solos with the question being asked – where we here on Earth first or not?
A killer song on an album of killers – Justice. About six minutes of everything. The extended instrumental; introduction, a monster central riff which it keeps coming back to framed around multiple solos and time changes. Monster, monster.
Dust off and re-string the imaginary Fender or Gibson Air. You’re going to need it. See the video here.
The accompanying DVD is the jewel in the crown. Paralex performing four songs (including Justice) from the teeny-tiny Nottingham Boat Club in 1981. Spot the “spontaneous” (?) stage moves being thrown. Pure Spinal Tap. We’ll forgive them that – it’s all about the music.
Watch and see the ability being displayed. Surely with this kind of ability any A&R types in the audience would have formed a disorderly queue with contract and pen in hand. Alas not.
A marvellous CD/DVD of a band which surely should have been h-u-g-e out of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal mosh pit.
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