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Oz: Burning Leather

It must be something in the (frozen) water in Northern Europe and Scandinavia in particular. From a reviewer's perspective it genuinely seems that everybody in those geographical regions is in a band and more importantly, a metal band. I have to confess that Oz are a new one to me despite the fact that they initially got together in the late 1970's before breaking up in 1991. They got back together in 2010 and now we find ourselves with the fruits of their labour, namely Burning Leather.

Burning Leather features some new tunes as well new versions of their 'classics' "Turn the Cross Upside Down" and "Fire in the Brain". As I've never heard the originals I cannot comment upon whether they are better in their new guise but what I can tell you is that Burning Leather is chock full of muscular hard rock that at times reminds me of Gillan, fellow Finnish metallers Tarot, Saxon or other NWOBHM bands.

Oz may not have come up with anything earth-shatteringly original but in songs like "Enter Stadium", "Dominator" and the aforementioned "Turn the Cross Upside Down" they possess some highly anthemic songs which just itch to be played in huge venues although given the state of the market today that's a tad unlikely. It's worth getting hold of Burning Leather just to experience the vocals of Ape DeMartini (great name) as he gets progressively more excited as the album goes along. I thought he might explode by the time he got to "Third Warning" but fortunately he didn't.

Track Listing:

  1. Dominator
  2. Searchlights
  3. Let Sleeping Dogs Lie
  4. Fire In The Brain
  5. Seasons In The Darkness
  6. Turn The Cross Upside Down
  7. Burning Leather
  8. Gambler
  9. Enter Stadium
  10. Total Metal
  11. Third Warning

Added: January 25th 2012
Reviewer: Simon Bray
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 2613
Language: english

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