Blitzkrieg-Judge Not Review

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Blitzkrieg is an institution, part of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, they are one of the few bands from the movement that is still going in the modern day, and they have stayed true to their roots. Their new album Judge Not is their first in five years, and so the anticipation is rightly there.

The opening salve is reminiscent of Judas Priest’s Hellion/Electric Eye, and is the aptly titled Heretic/Who Is Blind? both songs contain harmonies and an absolutely brilliant vocal performance by singer Brian Ross, a great way to start the record. The next song Angels or Demons has an extraterrestrial feeling to it and seems to be hinting at life beyond our world as one of the reasons for our development. Reign of Fire is a song about terrorism and that is reflected in the harshness of the music and the lyrics. Forever Is A Long Time is a song about a vampire growing tired of immortality, its crunchy riffs and the Brian Ross’s soaring vocals make it a song that will surely get people moving at the shows.

All Hell Is Breaking Loose, a song about Satan’s plan for revenge against God is as heavy as one would think it would be, a solid bass intro then moves into the storytelling lyrics of Brian Ross, bringing an emphasis of heaviness and headbanging goodness to the music. Loud and Proud is a rocker, a song that will get the crowd going with its call to arms. Without You is a song that handles the subject of a breakup and is suitably melancholic whilst also containing a chance of hope. Wide-Legged and Headless a rocker, with a grim story, Brian Ross really shines on this song, as do guitarists Ken Johnson and Alan Ross, bringing with them a real pinpoint precision that makes the song even more groovy. Falling Into Darkness, a song about Dorian Gray contains some of the heaviest riffs on the record, bringing solid slabs of metal to the table. Judge Not Is heavy and brutal, and is a fitting closer for the album.

Judge Not is a truly awesome record, bringing with it the best of British Heavy Metal. Be sure to get it when it comes out on 27th April. 10/10.


Blitzkrieg: Ken Johnson Interview

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I had the pleasure of speaking to Ken Johnson, the guitarist from the heavy metal band Blitzkrieg about the band’s new album, their career and their future plans:

1. How do you think the band’s career has evolved since you started out in the 1970s?

“Brian, our singer is the only original member of the band left, I’ve been with the band since 2002. I think we’ve evolved in certain aspects, but also kept true to our roots, which is classic British metal, moulded by bands such as Judas Priest and of course the New Wave of British Heavy Metal. And personally, for me, guitarists such as Glen Tipton, KK Downing, Ace Frehley and Michael Schenker have been huge influences as well.”

2. Could you talk through the process of making the new album?

“For me personally, I tend to write from the heart, and focus on what comes from that, obviously as with anything sometimes outside influences will creep in, but I try to keep that down to a minimum. I grew up with the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, so I guess I’m sort of in the right spot to understand it from a mental perspective. As for songs that I’m really liking on this record, I’d say Who Is Blind and Heretic, which was sort of moulded a little on Hellion/Electric Eye by Judas Priest, originally it was just one song, but then Brian wrote the lyrics so we changed it, so that Heretic was the opening intro, and Who Is Blind was what it moved into. Forever Is A Long Time is a really catchy number, Loud and Proud is a rocker, something we thought would get crowd participation going as it were. Falling Into Darkness is another one, I absolutely love what Brian’s done with the lyrics there, they really stand out to you. And of course, there will be an alternate version of Judge Not on the record as well, which comes from the Reign of Fire single. That song’s just too good to leave off the record.”

3. What plans have you got for the future?

“The album comes out on April 27th and the next day we’re playing an album release show in Newcastle with another New Wave of British Heavy Metal band called Mithra. Then we’re heading to play Metal Bash, and Nordic Noise in Denmark, then in September we’ll be doing a proper tour of Europe. Just got to keep an eye on costs, and ensure our promotion is done properly. We’ll most likely play a core of four songs off the new record, with a rotating fifth song, as we’ve got to make sure that things remain balanced for the fans. And we might do what we did last time and go out with two setlists to keep things fresh for us.”