Thursday, September 18, 2008

Shirt Optional


I think this may be an easy one. Though I know this isn't Fate's Warning, for some reason, that's the name that keeps popping into my head. So, I figure this must be either from that same era, same part of the country, or same style (remember, before Fate's Warning got all proggy, they were basically just an Iron Maiden clone).

Best part of this photo is the dude in the middle. Wow. Where to begin... He's rockin' the spandex and the S&M gear like a real man should. The other dudes are pretty much just toeing the metal party line of the day, as it were--black/red/white leather jackets and pants, some white Nikes, denim vest, etc. Guy on the left, however, forgot that "smiling is not metal."

Nonetheless, this is the promo photo the band chose to send out to fanzines some 20-plus years ago. Probably had no idea some jerk would be putting it online and mocking it long after they had all given up their dreams of rock stardom. Or have they?

Update: Once again Mr. Christe has (I believe) nailed it by identifying these guys as Liege Lord. I’m inclined to believe that’s correct since that name was in the back of my mind. Liege Lord seem to still be active to some degree, but there are no photos (even old ones) on their site as cool as this one.

9 comments:

Ian Christe said...

I'm going to go out on a limb here, and say that's the best photo I've ever seen of Liege Lord from Connecticut, circa late '84/early /'85. Maybe it's even Liege Lord before they were called Liege Lord?

AT said...

I do believe you are correct, sir. Haven't been able to confirm it, but I had an inkling it was Liege Lord, who I always (for some odd reason) associate with Fate's Warning.

Helm said...

(I bet you knew such a post was coming but...) Iron Maiden clone? Spectre Within and Awaken the Guardian destroy the best Iron Maiden had to offer for a simple reason: lyrics. While Steve Harris was off reading a book/watching a movie and writing another song lyric for Maiden, John Arch poured his heart out and embellished in multi-layered prose that rewards deeper inspection. Almost all he has to say is about a universal feeling that is hard not to appreciate. He remains one of the greatest lyricists and singers in HM, 20 years later. Sublime and ethereal, yet deeply human.

Liege Lord aren't really similar to Fates Warning but I can see where the mind would draw a connection as they're both US power metal operating at pretty much the same time and they both had been informed by thrash. The picture is indeed quite funny!

AT said...

Note to self: watch what you say re: Fate's Warning, their fans are a little protective. Uh, I was really only suggesting that pre-fame FW *sounded* a lot like Maiden (I never really examined John Arch's lyrics to the same degree that you have). There were a ton of bands in that era that were inspired by Maiden's ascent in popularity (Piece of Mind/Powerslave). Maybe "clone" was the wrong word, but when I listen to "Night on Brocken" I hear a lot of Maiden.

Helm said...

It's clear they were heavily inspired by them. Especially the first album, yes.

The reason I went out of my way to comment was that there's this peculiar effect with early Fates. Everybody knows them as a progressive metal band and in the same breath often when their earlier stuff is mentioned it is also branded as some Iron Maiden worship thing. The case might be that early Fates do what Maiden did better than them and also meant something so it's a shame of somebody didn't check out the early stuff because they've been told is a clone. Both eras are brilliant!

AT said...

I think a lot of it has to do with the historical perspective you approach it from. I'm old enough to have been listening to and buying music in the early '80s. Iron Maiden was *the* iconic band at the time that a lot of bands emulated. So, FW--like many others--were heavily influenced by Maiden initially. Then, a little later, FW found their own sound. This kind of thing happens a lot.

And I can understand how someone who likes later FW would be dismissive of the early material--it's clearly a different sound, not as complex. I'm not saying it's not good, but it's definitely more derivative. The only FW album I own (and want) is Night on Brocken, because, well, I'm a huge Maiden fan!

Dionisis said...

Yeah I understand what you're saying. I enjoy the blog, keep up the good work. I am still trying to figure out which the scarf heavy progressive metal dudes a few posts below are! I want closure!

AT said...

The only way we're gonna figure out who those scarf-wearin' dudes are is if we get a lot of people checking out this blog, so spread the word!

TRULY HEARTFELT PRODUCTIONS said...

it should also be pointed out that Metal Blade put a sticker on the cellophane of 'Awaken The Guardian' that suggested it "rocked with the power and vision of Iron Maiden and Queensryche" or something akin to that. I was a Maiden fan just beginning to get into Metal Blade stuff at that time & that sticker sold me on Fates. And YES, Fates is better than Maiden - that was immediately apparent. (But not Heir Apparent...that's a whole different band. heh.)