Uriah Heep - Demons and Wizards (1971)


 

Review

This was the fourth album by Uriah Heep. Question is : How do you review an album that is perfect. Not almost perfect, but totally perfect. This album has influenced metal a lot more than anything will be able to admit. The whole Power Metal scene was built on this album. If you like Power Metal, this is where it all started. The fact that every song on this album and even the Title was used as a name for a Power Metal band is evidence to that. Many of these songs were also covered by numerous Power Metal bands.

The album starts with the acoustic "Wizard" that builds up and goes over in a rocker. It is followed by the uptempo "Traveller in Time" that is very much based on the same musical ideas as "Look at Yourself". Then it is the hit "Easy Livin". What a song. "Poet's Justice" has a very catchy melody and stunning guitarduo in the middle. The interplay between Hensley and Box is defnitely a highlight on this song. "Circle of hands" starts of with a churchorgan sound. Everything you wants from a powermetal song is here. Melody, power, brilliant rhytm section, superb vocals - in other words - perfection. Byron possibly had his best moments ever on this song. Backed by perfect background vocals it could never get better. "Rainbow Demon" again is a perfect example of how an organ and n accoustic guitar can work perfectly in harmony. The build up on this songs i brilliant. Even when the song begins you know that this song is going to capture a moment of brilliance. "All My Life" is a guitardriven song whereByron's ability to sing rock 'n roll is emphasized and also the slideguitar is brilliant.

And then the last song is the most brilliant epic ever written and perform by a band: "Paradise / The Spell" - the first part of the medley starts in an acoustic folk mode and slowly adds layers of organ and electric guitar until it becomes a forceful slow-tempo rocker, while the second half is a punchy, organ-led rocker that includes an instrumental midsection where choral-style harmonies fortify a killer, Pink Floyd-style guitar solo from Mick Box. What a superb song. I saw them performing it at the Sweden Rock Festival in 2003. Possibly the best moment in my life.

This is an album that you can explain to somebody. They have to experience it. It is defnitely my favourite album ever.

Rating: 10/10

Album Cover:


 

Release date: Jan 1972

Band members:

Mick Box (guitars)
David Byron (voc)
Gary Thain (Bass)
Lee Kerslake (Drums))
Ken Hensley (Keys, guitars)

Songs:

1 The Wizard Clarke, Hensley 2:59
2 Traveller in Time Box, Byron, Kerslake 3:25
3 Easy Livin' Hensley 2:37
4 Poet's Justice Box, Hensley, Kerslake 4:15
5 Circle of Hands Hensley 6:25
6 Rainbow Demon Hensley 4:25
7 All My Life Box, Byron, Kerslake 2:44
8 Paradise/The Spell Hensley 12:42
 

Best Songs:

The Wizard
Easy Livin'
Rainbow Demon
Paradise/ The Spell

Summary

Uriah Heep created a perfect album with "Demons and Wizards". This moment was never to be repeated by any hard rock band. You cannot beat a 10.


 

 

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