Armed And Ready – Kerrang! 1982 GEOFF BANKS

IF ONE thing separates the doers from the dross it is originality. Unfortunately, far too many new bands tend to think a few re-cycled Sabbath riffs is the gateway to fame and fortune. A fallacy perpetrated by the NWOBHM record company signing spree. Personally I prefer a band who have a crack at trying something a bit different, not too different mind, just enough to prove that the often criticised rigid heavy rock framework is a bit more flexible than people give it credit for.

So it was with a fair amount of pleasure that I listened to the first demo from Wikkyd Vikker. All still in their teens they have been together just over eight months, yet in that relatively short space of time have generated enough attention to merit them two tracks on a soon to be released sampler album from the Hull based Ebony Records. And it’s not hard to see why.

‘Phoenix’, one of the two demo tracks is, if not the next ‘Stairway To Heaven’, as classy a rock ballad I expect to hear for quite a while. Produced in what sounds like a toilet, it has a raw charm that, with a half-decent production, would no doubt raise a few interested eyebrows, not least for the Japan-ish vocals of chanteur Dick Boorman.

When I mentioned the Sylvian connection Dick wasn’t amused. “I can’t stand him,” was about as flattering a statement as he was willing to give. Well, you can’t win ’em all.

Despite this major setback to my “heavy metal band into Japan” expose I reckon Wikkyd Vikker may just bring a little shade into what is becoming increasingly grey music. Either that or win an award for the silliest name of the year.

Wikkyd Vikker are: Dick Boorman voice, Adrian Bates, drums and too much hi-hat, Andy Harrison bass and Gary Butler guitar.

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