Thanks to important line-up changes, among other reasons, Blitzkrieg
sadly broke up and didnât get the chance to shine earlier in their careers and itâs a real shame. While A Time of Changes
is definitely a flawed album at times, at its best it also showcases the NWOBHM movement in its best form and thus, it is a gem worthy of acquiring.
were one of the first bands in the NWOBHM to really begin pushing the limits of the genre early on in the movement, alongside Satan
and Iron Maiden, and a lot of these tunes were writTen
in 1980/â81. Itâs worth noting that, because you can tell how this bandâs material had a profound effect on bands like Metallica
â whom covered the song âBlitzkrieg
â in 1984 â Exodus
, etc. The bandâs harder, more driving but still very much traditional style was certainly a big influence upon what would become thrash metal. This is worth noting because despite the release date of 1985 the songs actually date back a lot further.
Is it any good? Personally, Iâm a huge sucker for the NWOBHM in general (though Iâll acknowledge there were a lot of mediocre or bad bands) and thus, I dig this album a lot, even if it isnât perfect. The biggest problem that afflicts this album is a horrible production â imagine Satan
âs Court in the Act but even more drenched in reverb in general. The rhythm guitar sounds muffled, the snare has this huge but loose sound to it, and in general instead of augment the instrumental sound it hinders it. Itâs really BAD sounding all around, and itâs not even bad but somehow fitting raw like CitA. Itâs truly a shame because the music is class stuff.
The songwriting is pretty damn strong â most of these songs still possess that hard-rocking vibe like pretty much the entire NWOBHM, but as I said earlier, thereâs a more pronounced hard-edged approach to the riffwork on here than most bands of the movement. Heavy, but not quite what Satan
had going on CitA and the earlier Demo
s. (IE proto-power and thrash riffs) Thereâs a lot of excellent, catchy, galloping riffs on here, you name the song, they have âem. The drumming is pretty basic but solid, fits like a glove in backing these tunes. Brian Rossâ arew excellent and about as good of a performance as the one he did on Satan
âs CitA: a smooth, melodic mid-range combined with the odd jarring falsetto shriek.
As for the songsâ¦ âInferno
â is a strong, heady opener with an instantly memorable chorus (in that NWOBHM sense, IE hard rock-ish) and some excellent riffing in the middle. âBlitzkrieg
â is probably the greatest song on here, especially with that powerhouse of a main riff and the excellent melodic solo that appears in the middle, though the over six minute-long âArmageddon
â, the excellently melodic ballad âVikingsâ and the well-developed title track also lay claim to that title. The rest of the songs are all pretty strong in their own right, especially âPull The Triggerâ (which is actually a Satan
cover â the song originally appeared on the Into The Fire Demo
. Russ Tippins of Satan
also does the guest outro solo on here).
While a full-legnth was definitely too late by 1985 to make the impact it could have, A Time of Changes
is nonetheless an exceptionally strong album for those more inclined towards traditional heavy metal to lisTen
to. The reissue, known as A Time For Changes
: Phase 1 includes this album, the early Demo
s, and what wouldâve been their debut in 1981 all as bonus tracks on 2 discs, thus making this more than worthy of the price one might pay for them.