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Thunderstruck-Tales From The Equinox
November 2013
Released: 1998, Star USA
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: JP

“Thor, The Mighty! Thor, The Brave! Crush the infidels in your way.” (Manowar, 1984)

Before Iron Maiden. Before Metallica. Before Slayer. Even before Manowar… there was THOR! In 1973, a young musician records his first demo/single in Vancouver, Canada what was to become the germination of ‘Body Rock’, and the eventual evolution into one of Metal mightiest warriors and most prolific and enduring acts...THE MIGHTY THOR! In celebration of his 40th anniversary and in tribute to Canada’s longest running Metal band, I am very proud to present short reviews of 13 releases from across his career. Feel free to enjoy all the reviews in this feature including…

-Keep The Dogs Away (1977)

-Unchained (1983)

-Only The Strong (1985)

-Live In Detroit (1985)

-Anthorology (1997)

-Thunderstruck (1998)

-Dogz II (2001)

-Mutant (2003)

-Beastwomen From The Center of The Earth (2004)

-Thor Against The World (2005)

-Rock And Roll Nightmare (2006)

-Into The Noise (2008)

-Thunderstryke (2012)

For reasons that were never quite explained THOR dropped off the scene in the late 80’s and perhaps went to Valhalla. I’m sure there is an entire book worth of material to explain what happened to Thor from 1987-1997. It was a dark, cold decade of silence indeed. Fortunately for all the Rock Warriors around the globe he re-emerged onto the music scene with the low-key ANTHOROLOGY CD in 1997. A year later Thor’s proper comeback album, the awkwardly titled THUNDERSTURCK-TALES FROM THE EQUINOX, was released. Despite an enormous amount of material released from 1973-1986 (EP’s, singles, and even not one but two soundtrack albums) THUNDERSTRUCK was only Thor’s third album!

Strangely enough, but quite pleasingly, the entire line-up of the previous album ONLY THE STRONG is on this album. The only exception is that the female side-kick, ‘Pantera’ was replaced by another female side-kick named ‘Cherry Bomb’. The 14 cut album runs only 49 minutes and Thor is no dummy. I believe that he realized that when you are gone for a decade and Thrash and Death Metal have all been invented since he was gone, he has to play to his strengths. Already a 25 year veteran of the business at this point, it would be tough to compete with leaner, younger, hungrier acts therefore he does what he does best, classic 70’s and 80’s Hard Rock and Metal. The downside perhaps is that here is quite a lot of older material redone for this record. ‘Warhammer', ‘Unchained’, ‘Ragnarok’ all show up on the album. Thor also shows his roots and the band does a decent version of ‘Court Of The Crimson King’. And an obscure Alice Cooper song called ‘Talk Talk’ from the 1980 album, FLUSH THE FASHION. The song ‘Invader’ is one of the heavier ones he has done to this point and there was a nice guitar/solo instrumental by Steve Price called ‘Apocalyptic Explosion’. Bassist Keith Zazzi takes the microphone to provide lead vocals for a punchy song called ‘No Peace For The Pious’ but his glam rock styled delivery doesn’t match the rest of the album and he can’t compete with Thor’s mighty bellow.

The packaging isn’t much to look at but the production values are much better than previous work. It was a worthy comeback, but perhaps not many people noticed due to the album being on a small label and the changing times in Metal. Enjoyable, but this album does not stand as one of his most well known or popular.
Track Listing

1. War Hammer
2. The Equinox
3. The Court of the Crimson King
4. Invader
5. Electric Eyes
6. Rag-Na-Rock
7. Slap Your Face (Knock 'em Down Part II)
8. The Chance
9. Apocalyptic Explosion
10. Talk, Talk
11. Strange Lantern
12. No Peace for the Pious
13. Corridors of Life
14. Unchained (When Rises the Moon)


Jon Mikl Thor Vocals
Pantera Vocals
Steve Price Guitar
Steve Jacobs Guitar
Keith Zazzi Bass
Mike Favata Drums

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