Home Albums Album Review : Diamond Head – Lightning To The Nations (THE WHITE ALBUM) [Remastered 2021]

Album Review : Diamond Head – Lightning To The Nations (THE WHITE ALBUM) [Remastered 2021]

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Review by Mark Montgomery for MPM

We all know the spiritual home of Metal is the UK, and there are handfuls of the early bands that are still around and are successful today, like Judas Priest and Iron Maiden for example.

And there are also handfuls of the early bands still around that are not as successful. And of course, there are bands still around and I wonder why they are successful at all….

A lot of the heavy hitters of the last 4 decades count these early bands as influences. These bands were the seeds of the Metal Family Tree (this is the third time I have mentioned the Metal Family Tree, I must map this out…)

Diamond Head are one of these bands. If you didn’t have Diamond Head there would be no Metallica, if there were no Metallica there would be no………. Lars Ulrich? The point of all this is, that some of these early bands were very good but were not as successful as they should have been.

We all know the story of Anvil from that great documentary that points out that being good is not enough. It’s a cautionary tale to a lot of up-and-coming Metal bands: You may be a great musician in a great band that write amazing songs that crowds love, but it is not enough to be successful. And there are a lot of Bands that are successful that aren’t any good.

It’s a balance to get right to have the staying power in a fickle industry. It is unfortunate that there are bands from the beginning like Diamond Head that didn’t have the success, it is a series of bad decisions and bad business deals that is ultimately what holds bands back.

Diamond Head’s debut album Lightning To The Nations is a key influence on the entire genre. “We wrote instinctively” explains co-founding member Brian Tatler “we had an undeniably unique sound. Four young lads, each with an element that, when combined, produced an alloy that was our own heavy metal sound.” To The Nations (The White Album) [Remastered 
2021] is the ultimate version of this ultimate album”.

Tatler recalls: “In 1990, as a celebration of the tenth anniversary of the NWOBHM, Lars Ulrich and Geoff Barton compiled the double album ‘New Wave Of British Heavy Metal ’79 Revisited’ which came out on Phonogram Records.

It was Lars who made it his business to track down wherever possible the original master tapes because all he had were the old, often scratched singles. He told me that he would often call up members of the bands they wanted to feature on the album and the confused guy on the other end of the phone would assume it was wind-up.

‘Who? Lars Ulrich? From METALLICA? Fuck off!’ When Lars called me, I explained that the original quarter-inch masters for ‘Lightning To The Nations’ hadn’t been seen since they were sent by our old manager to a guy called Horgi at Woolfe Records years back.

Apparently Horgi didn’t return the tapes, so Lars dispatched someone from METALLICA’s German label to pay the guy a visit… The tapes were duly returned and after Phonogram had finished with them, Lars made sure they came home to me. I still have them stored safely.”

Its those tapes that has enabled this release. There are more than just tracks here, the package features a selection of bonus tracks along with liner notes by Tatler.

The early mixes are a good listen if you are into the history and the evolution of the song writing and production, but the real draw is that remastering of the Album that first dropped in 1980.

It sounds great, much better than the old worn-out scratched singles of early Metal I have.

“Lightning To The Nations (The White Album) [Remastered 2021]” will be released as a double CD, a deluxe 180-gram gatefold triple-vinyl edition containing the original album remastered, the lost mixes and the bonus tracks. There will also be a single vinyl edition of just the remastered album, also on 180 grams. The complete recordings will also be available to stream and download.

Do the band justice and get that 180-gram gatefold triple-vinyl, downloading it just doesn’t seem right for this one somehow. Get a patch on your battle jacket and tell your mates about them.

Also, check out their most recent offerings. They are still superb, and I think you will be pleasantly surprised. And one last thing, go see them live! They are on tour in Nov 2022. See you there!

Lightning To The Nations (The White Album) [Remastered 2021] tracklisting:

  1. Lightning to the Nations
  2. The Prince
  3. Sucking My Love
  4. Am I Evil?
  5. Sweet and Innocent
  6. It’s Electric 
  7. Helpless
  8. Lightning to the Nations (Lost Original Mix)
  9. The Prince (Lost Original Mix)
  10. Sucking My Love (Lost Original Mix)
  11. Am I Evil? (Lost Original Mix)
  12. Sweet and Innocent (Lost Original Mix)

Bonus Tracks:

  1. Shoot Out the Lights
  2. Streets of Gold
  3. Play It Loud
  4. Waited Too long
  5. Diamond Lights
  6. We Won’t Be Back
  7. I Don’t Got

Diamond Head are:
BRIAN TATLER: Lead, Rhythm Guitars 
ANDREW “ABBZ” ABBERLEY: Rhythm, Lead Guitars

Diamond Head 1980 line-up:

Follow Diamond Head on:

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