The Byron-era of Uriah Heep was the defining era for Uriah Heep. This era can be summarized in 4 phases:

  • The first phase was when they started and recorded "Very 'Eavy Very 'Umble" With the many styles on this album they were looking for a direction to go. The nicest thing about this album is the fact that they did everything with total commitment. This was a band that liked what they were doing even though they did not know where they were going.
  • The second phase was the consolidation phase. At this stage they knew what worked for them. Every album had the epic song, the rockers and the mellow tracks.  The next five albums from "Salisbury" to " "Sweet Freedon" was built on this musical template. The best songs here are the epics.
  • The third phases consisted of "Wonderworld". As they have done already on "Sweet Freedom" they moved away from the fantasy lyrics and went a more Pop-direction. The result was not too bad. But it started a direction which I think was not for the better good of the band. At this stage the band should have moved into a more NWOHBM direction. They had everything - the songs, the musicians etc. But unfortunately, they opted for a more pop-orientated direction.
  • The fourth phase consisted of "Return to Fantasy" and "High and Mighty". This was full circle - back to phase 1 again. A band that did not know what direction to take. The result was all genres on one album. Even a country song found it's way to the Fantasy album. With Byron leaving in 1976/7, it was not only the end of the era, but also the completion of the circle. Back where they started.

I am working on a list to show Heep's best songs in this era. The songs will be divided in 4 categories: Epics, rockers, melodic songs, other songs. If you have any suggestions  Email  us.

 

The 9 albums

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