on June 3, 2004
Before Metallica came to be, there was Diamond Head. And the album LIGHTNING TO THE NATIONS was the one that started it all. Diamond Head were one of the esteemed NWOBHM bands in the late 70s-early 80s that were influential in the heavy metal genre.
LIGHTNING TO THE NATIONS featured great songs such as the title track, "Sucking My Love", "Helpless", & the classic "Am I Evil?" that Metallica covered in their GARAGE DAYS, Inc.
Every metal fan MUST have this album.
on March 25, 2004
Oh yeah this is the NWOBHM'S finest moment! I think this debut of Diamond Head, that is Lightning To The Nations(1980), is the best NWOBHM album. Because this is much more better than any other NWOBHM classics that were released in 1980. It is absolutely better and more speedy than Iron Maiden's debut. It is much more deadly and satanic than Def Leppard's "On Through The Night". Even if it is less satanic than Angel Witch's debut, I think it is more heavier and powerful NWOBHM classic than Angel Witch's. Diamond Head's music in "Lightning to the nations", has also more progressive and doom sound than Saxon's classic NWOBHM album, "Wheels Of Steel". Also I think Diamond Head was unique among other NWOBHM bands. Because as I have heard, a writer in a music magazine called SOUNDS, talked about Diamond Head's unique sound in "Lightning to the Nations", and he said that Diamond Head is the only heavy metal band that puts more guitar riffs in a song than Black Sabbath did. If you listen this album carefully you'll see that this is true. Because there are too much riffs in songs that you cannot count,such as songs like "Helpless" and "Sucking My Love". In original version of this album there are 7 songs. But I want to recommend you the extended version. Because in this version you will find other singles of Diamond Head which were released in their 1981 EP. called "Diamond Lights". Please be careful when listening to this CD because you will find magnificent melodies in "The Prince", some AC/DC influences on "It's Electric", and really heavy and dark sound on "Lighning ToThe Nations" and "Am I Evil?". Also in extended version there are such good songs like "Play it loud" and "We won't be back". If you won't have this CD, you will miss some great music!! WHIPLASH!!!!!!!!!!!!
on November 13, 2003
Lightning To The Nations: The White Album (1980.) Diamond Head's first album.
In the late seventies and early eighties, the NWOBHM (New Wave Of British Heavy Metal) took Great Britain by storm overnight. Literally hundreds of bands emerged, each rocking harder and better than the last. Unfortunately, very few of these bands ever achieved success in their homeland, and an even fewer number achieved success abroad. Diamond Head, though fairly popular in the United Kingdom, NEVER made it big in America. Fortunately, the band has gotten somewhat of a revival/awakening since Metallica confesses to being influenced by them. This is the band's first album. Read on for my review of it.
Lightning To the Nations - The opening track is straight-up NWOBHM-based hard rock with some excellent vocals by vocalist Sean Harris. A title track should always be one of the album's best tracks - and this one sure is!
The Prince - Metallica covered this one. A guitar solo that is unbelievably good opens this track. Through the six-minute-plus masterpiece, guitar playing remains the star attraction, though the other band members also do very well.
Sucking My Love - I don't dislike this song, but I'd have to say it's probably the weakest track on here. It clocks in at over nine minutes, and in all that time, there just isn't much of a style variance. That's not to say this is a bad song - I actually think you'll quite like it.
Am I Evil - Metallica covered this one. Unquestionably Diamond Head's biggest hit, and arguably the album's best song. The opening instrument sequence is excellent, and Sean serves up some of his most memorable vocals here. To call this song excellent is an understatement.
Sweet And Innocent - MY FAVORITE SONG ON THE ALBUM. Here the boys uses a straight-up NWOBHM-based hard rock sound (similar to the title track), but add some melodic elements to keep things interesting. It's short and sweet - just what a metal song should be.
It's Electric - Metallica covered this one. Once again, the band serves up some straight-up hard rock that almost certainly won't fail to please. This isn't the best song on here, but it's still an excellent one.
Helpless - The album is closed with a heavy yet melodic rocker that is nothing short of excellent. This is one of the album's best tracks in my opinion - and I think you'll agree.
Don't order this from Amazon right away! The album was recently reissued with bonus tracks, so if you order it, order THAT edition.
Overall Diamond Head's debut is a great album. Other reviewers have complained about the sound quality being less-than-stellar since the tracks were mastered from twenty-plus-year-old damaged tapes. The sound quality isn't terrible, but this flaw can certainly be noticed. Still, I remain confident that this is an excellent release from Diamond Head - just be sure you get one of the reissues with bonus tracks!