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Heathen Recovered- A Decent Comeback - 85%

sixxswine, August 6th, 2004

I was never a fan of Heathen's, even in their prime. I think for me a big turn off was their cover of "Set Me Free." I personally didn't care for that, what did initially attract me to the band was the fact that they had worked with Ronnie Montrose. When I got this compilation of covers & demos, my expectations for such a mix of material, wasn't very high. I do admire them for taking a chance & opening the record with two songs, that I never heard as thrash/power metal hybrid,“Death on Two Legs” by Queen & “The Holy War” by Thin Lizzy. Who would have thought?
I like their renditions, they brought a fresh approach to each of those two tracks. I think if someone wasn't familiar with the originals, they'd think they were Heathen material. Heathen did include one original track recorded for this compilation, it's entitled “In Memory of...” It's a very emotional, moody, it gives the band a chance to branch out & do something more than just shred. I'm sure, this newly recorded track, will please their core fan base. I think the real bonus to this collection is the remastered demos. You get an opportunity to do some time traveling & listen to band in their infancy, with raw & an unadulterated sound. The innocence of the band & their energy is captured brilliantly on these recordings, the remastering just enhances the experience.
Clearly if you're a fan of Heathen you'll be jumping for joy that they have returned after a lengthy hiatus. I think this is a good record, that fans of power metal & thrash would really appreciate.