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Diamond Head: Borrowed Time (remaster)

The classic second release from one of the leaders of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) movement, Borrowed Time is a true gem of 80's heavy metal regardless of how you classify it. In 1982, Diamond Head were on a roll, as they had already released their highly regarded debut Lightning To The Nations (or The White Album as it's sometimes also called) in 1980, and after signing to MCA Records came out with Borrowed Time. This album contained a few songs that appeared on the debut, but I think the reasoning was to take a few of the best songs from that release plus some new songs and open the doors up to the entire world with their new collection of material. Seeing as their debut was self-produced, financed, and distributed in limited quantities, Borrowed Time was officially looked at as the band's debut.

The seven tracks from the album are simply classic examples of tastefully done melodic heavy rock. Call it metal, call it hard rock, but in the end Borrowed Time is just classy stuff no matter what way you look at it or classify it. "In the Heat of the Night" has a certain Led Zeppelin meets Whitesnake feel to it, with Sean Harris' bluesy vocals soaring over tasty guitar work from Brian Tatler, whose riffs and solos just ring with melodic beauty and fiery emotion. Drummer Duncan Scott and bassist Colin Kimberley lead in "To Heaven From Hell", a raunchy rocker not unlike some of Bad Company's early material, with Harris launching his best Paul Rodgers/Robert Plant swagger, and from there the band move right into "Call Me", a memorable hard rock piece that has a certain UFO feel to it, very British, and very melodic. From the debut LP comes "Lightning to the Nations", a fast paced heavy rock number with cruncy guitar work and some complex arrangements. Similar in sound and structure to some of what Def Leppard was doing on their debut, this song really cooks from start to finish and shows what a talented singer Harris is and how many tricks Tatler had up his sleeve. The mysterious and moody title track follows, with Tatler's textured chords and Kimberley's bubbling bass lines leading the charge before Harris' emotional and somewhat tortured vocals jump into the mix. Heavy Black Sabbath inspired riffs meet up with passionate vocals on "Don't You Ever Leave Me", and the album closer "Am I Evil?" is the heaviest piece here, a song that inspired a host of 80's thrash icons, most notably Metallica and Megadeth. With some purely heavy and evil riffs, the tone of this classic track goes from doom metal, to thrash, to prog-metal, and is one of 80's metal's true epic songs. It also made its second appearance here, as it was another song from the debut Lightning To The Nations, and obviously a song that the band wanted the world to hear.

Metal Mind Productions, one of Poland's leading heavy metal labels, has lavishly remastered Borrowed Time here, packed in a stunning digipack with a great booklet containing photos, lyrics, and an essay on the band. Also included are a host of bonus tracks, including a few studio cuts (the excellent rockers "Trick or Treat", "Dead Reckoning" and "Shoot Out the Lights") and some live tracks, plus a 1982 interview with singer Sean Harris and Colin Kimberley, both of whom are not in the current incarnation of Diamond Head.

If you don't already own Borrowed Time, or if you have an old LP, Tape, or CD copy, now is the time to upgrade to this wonderful reissue. Quite frankly, this metal gem has never sounded better.


Track Listing
1) In the Heat of the Night
2) To Heaven From Hell
3) Call Me
4) Lightning to the Nations
5) Borrowed Time
6) Don't You Ever Leave Me
7) Am I Evil?
Bonus Tracks
8) Trick Or Treat
9) Dead Reckoning
10) Shoot Out the Lights
11) In the Heat of the Night
12) Play It Loud (live)
13) Sweet and Innocent (live)
14) Interview with Sean Harris and Colin Kimberley June 1982

Added: December 10th 2007
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Score:
Related Link: Diamond Head Website
Hits: 2876
Language: english

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