Mark, John, & Joe
English metal trio from the NWOBHM era. Raven was formed in late-70's in Newcastle, England by brothers Mark (guitar) and John Gallagher (bass/vocals), and drummer Rob "Wacko" Hunter. They signed with independent Neat Records and layed the groundwork for what would become known as thrash metal, although Raven commonly referred to themselves as "Athletic Rock!" This was not a bad description as Raven were over-the-top, energetic, British heavy metal. I am a complete Raven Lunatic, although I must admit I did lose interest in them in the late 80's when they were following the glam pop-metal trend. I picked back up with "Nothing Exceeds Like Excess." when the band returned to its roots. Of course, the task in 1997 was to replace all the crappy vinyl with discs. Fortunately this wasn't quite as hard as I had originally thought, especially after seeing the prices people were paying for "All for One" on eBay. Yikes! Turns out all the early albums were re-released with bonus tracks in 1999! Sometimes patience really is a virtue. Raven have finally secured an American label in 2000 . "One For All" is now out on Metal Blade.

Rock Until You Drop Raven-Rock Until You Drop (Spitfire) 1981

1. "Hard Ride" (3:10)
2. "Hell Patrol" (4:43)
3. "Don't Need Your Money" (3:22)
4. "Over the Top" (3:51)
5. "39-40"-instrumental (0:51)
6. "For the Future" (4:04)
7. "Rock Until You Drop" (4:02)
8. "Nobody's Hero" (3:50)
9. "Hellraiser/Action" (5:37)
10. "Lambs to the Slaughter" (3:51)
11. "Tyrant of the Airways" (7:16)
12. "Wiped Out" (4:30)
13. "Crazy World" (3:57)
14. "Inquisitor" (3:53)

"Rock Until You Drop" is a NWOBHM classic. The production was raw but it only added to the appeal. The cover photo of Raven buried in their own equipment is a tell tale story of what you will hear in the music. Controlled choas! In a sense Raven (or arguably Motorhead) were the first speed metal band. 1981 and Raven were one of the heaviest things going. "Fist clenching, neck-breaking, head-busting sound. High power metal!" "Hell Patrol" is one of my favorite Raven songs. For some reason, the first three Raven albums are hard to come by on cd in the U.S. I acquired this disc in an internet trade.

Well, the above statement is true no longer, with Spitfire releasing the first three albums in the U.S. Of course these re-issues have bonus tracks so I traded in my Neat/Castle import version for this re-issue.

"Lambs to the Slaughter" has been covered by Kreator.

Wiped Out Raven-Wiped Out/Crash Bang Wallop (EP) (Neat Records) 1982

1. "Faster Than the Speed of Light" (4:22)
2. "Bring the Hammer Down" (4:19)
3. "Fire Power" (3:08)
4. "Read All About It" (3:01)
5. "To the Limit/To the Top" (7:54)
6. "Battle Zone" (3:34)
7. "Live at the Inferno" (3:54)
8. "Star War" (5:35)
9. "UXB" (3:25)
10. "20/21"-instrumental (1:36)
11. "Hold Back the Fire" (5:50)
12. "Chain Saw" (5:17)

13. "Crash, Bang, Wallop" (3:04)
14. "Rock Hard" (3:11)
15. "Run Them Down" (2:59)

"Wiped Out" wins the award for the WORST cover art! CHEESE is the word for it. The music contained, however is great! A tad better production than "R.U.Y.D." but if you listen to Raven, you were never concerned with production to begin with. Raven are loud, proud, and obnoxious! Crank it up and drive your mom, wife, or whoever up a wall! This 1999 re-issue has the Crash Bang Wallop EP as bonus tracks.

Raven-Radio Hell/Heads Up (cdr compilation)

1. "Lambs to the Slaughter" (3:28)
2. "Hold Back the Fire" (5:48)
3. "Hard Ride" (3:08)
4. "Chainsaw" (4:11)
5. "Hell On Earth" (4:57)
6. "World Comes Tumbling Down" (4:43)
3. "Stay Human" (4:32)
4. "Still Hungry" (3:47)
5. "All For One" -live (3:52)
6. "Into the Jaws of Death" -live (3:56)
7. "Can't Run & Hide" -live (2:40)

CDR compilation of some rare Raven tracks. Tracks 1-4 were released on a record called "Radio Hell" which was recorded live over a UK Radio One program in 1982. The original was released on cd by Raw Fruit and featured four songs each by Raven, Venom and Warfare. These four tunes are all excellent and sound as good as the original album recordings, probably because they too were pretty much recorded live in the studio. The last seven tracks are taken from the "Heads Up" EP. See below for more info on that disc.

All For One Raven-All for One /Born to Be Wild (EP) (Neat Records) 1983

1. "Take Control"
2. "Mind Over Metal"
3. "Sledgehammer Rock"
4. "All for One"
5. "Run Silent Run Deep"
6. "Hung, Drawn & Quartered"
7. "Break the Chain"
8. "Take It Away"
9. "Seek & Destroy"
10. "Athletic Rock"
11. "Born to be Wild"
12. "The Ballad of Marshall Stack"
13. "Inquisitor"

When I was in high school bands like Accept, Anvil, Metallica, Anthrax, Slayer and Raven were all underground bands and with the exception of the small group I hung out with, nobody in school listened to them. Who would have figured that a few of these bands would break out from the pack and become giants. Raven's third full length disc, "All for One" was a raw, mean, aggressive piece of metal. "Break the Chain," the album's single was doing well and it looked as though Raven would be one of those bands that would become huge, but alas, it never really happened to the extent that it did for Metallica, Anthrax, or even Accept and Slayer. Who cares! This album is a metal classic. Nobody did it like Raven in 1983! Nobody was this intense, this aggressive, this outrageous! Add to that the "Break the Chain" EP that has been added to this 1999 re-issue and you've got one monster metal disc. "Inquisitor" with Udo Dirkschneider (UDO/Accept) sharing vocals duties is one outrageous song. "The Ballad of Mashall Stack" is no ballad, but another outrageous Raven masterwork. "Born to be Wild" is the craziest and the truly heaviest version of this song I have ever heard. Udo and John Gallagher sharing lead vocals is, well, let's just say that if someone were to ask me what the definition of heavy metal was I would play them this song. Enough said? Too bad that Raven would give into big label pressure after this and start releasing pop metal fluff.

For some reason this disc, although it has been re-released several times is one of the hardest Raven discs to find. I had to ask a friend of mine who lives in Germany to see if he could locate a copy for me. He did!

Raven-Live at the Inferno (Megaforce/Steamhammer) 1984

1. "Intro/Live at the Inferno" (1:21)
2. "Take Control (3:22)
3. "Mind Over Metal (3:30)
4. "Crash Bang Wallop (3:13)
5. "Rock Until You Drop (4:12)
6. "Faster than the Speed of Light (4:12)
7. "All For One (3:48)
8. "Forbidden Planet" -guitar solo (1:52)
9. "Star Wars" (5:19)
10. "Tyrant of the Airways/ Run Silent, Run Deep" (6:41)
11. "Crazy World" (4:53)
12. "Let It Rip" (3:48)
13. "I.G.A.R.B.O." (2:03)
14. "Wiped Out" (4:02)
15. "Fire Power" (3:29)
16. "I Don't Need Your Money" (3:22)
17. "Break the Chain" (3:58)
18. "Hell Patrol" (7:23)
19. "Live at the Inferno" (6:54)

I read somewhere that live albums are usually the end of an era for a band. This is especially true of Raven. After this disc they totally lost focus of what they were doing and what their fans wanted. So, I suppose this live album is a testament to the early days of Raven, when they were on the top and perhaps the greatest NWOBHM band around. Raven's "Live at the Inferno" is an excellent testament to that fact. Every song on this disc is blistering, heavy, and raw, exactly the way Raven is suppose to be. Finding this two record set on cd was a chore as it has never been commercially available in the U.S., that I know of. My copy is a German import.

Stay Hard Raven-Stay Hard (Mayhem) 1985

1. "Stay Hard" (2:59)
2. "When the Going Gets Tough" (3:34)
3. "On and On" (3:54)
4. "Get It Right" (4:49)
5. "Restless Child" (2:45)
6. "Power and Glory" (3:37)
7. "Pray for the Sun" (4:22)
8. "Hard Ride" (3:15)
9. "Extract the Action" (3:04)
10. "Bottom Line" -instrumental (3:37)
11. "Gimme Just a Little" (3:56)
12. "Do or Die" (4:00)

"Stay Hard" was Raven's major label (Atlantic) debut. The disc is leaps and bounds better than the disc that would follow it, but no where near as important an album as any of it's predecessors. "Stay Hard" is a transition album, taking Raven into more commercial territory for the first time, yet somehow it still rocks heavy and manages to keep the Raven sound. "Hard Ride" is a rewritten, re-recorded version of the song off the band's landmark debut complete with new blazing solos. "Extract the Action" is an excellent song and one that has seen resurrection on the "Raw Tracks" disc. The instrumental "Bottom Line" is a cool song as well, but includes a horn section, which is quite bizarre for Raven. The entire album is actually a good listen, but unfortunately a precursor to one of the worst albums in Raven's catalogue. This particular copy is a German import and included two bonus tracks.

Daddy'sSick Honey Raven-Daddy's Sick Honey (CDR)

1. "Stay Hard" (2:55)
2. "Get It Right" (4:45)
3. "Hard Ride" (3:10)
4. "Extract the Action" (3:00)

This was a cool bonus when I bought "Life's A Bitch" on eBay. This cdr arrived with it for free. Now that was a nice surprise. Contains what sounds like "live in the studio" takes of four Raven tunes. Either that or this is just poorly recorded studio songs. No other information was given, as a matter of fact, "Extract the Action" was listed on the back as "Strike the Action" and "Get It Right" was listed as "Raise Your Hand." I don't know if this exists in a "real" cd format or if it is only a cdr that is being passed around by fans.

Well, what do you know, I received an email from John Gallagher. I sent him a copy of the CDR as both he and I were curious what exactly this disc was. This is what he had to say about this bootleg:
Hi Scott, Got you package today - yeah, the "daddy's sick" cd is a weird rip off...it's the studio tracks played through a reverb unit!!!!!! cheers, john

The Pack is BackRaven-The Pack Is Back (Mayhem) 1986

1. "The Pack is Back" (3:43)
2. "Gimme Some Lovin'" (3:14)
3. "Screamin' Down The House" (4:00)
4. "Young Blood" (3:24)
5. "Hyperactive" (3:41)
6. "Rock Dogs" (4:00)
7. "Don't Let It Die" (3:47)
8. "Get Into Your Car" (3:54)
9. "All I Want" (3:34)
10. "Nightmare Ride" (3:38)
11. "How Did You Get So Crazy" (3:50)
12. "See It On TV" (4:07)

If someone had played this for me and told me it was Raven, I would not have believed them. I mean, "Gimme Some Lovin'" has scary resemblences to The Knacks "My Sharona." YIKES! (I believe "Gimme Some Lovin'" is a Spencer Davis Group cover.) They even have synthesizer solos and use horns. This just should not be. It really is hard to believe this is the same powerful metal machine that gave us such classics as "Wiped Out" and "Rock Til You Drop."

You know it's funny though, I have seen tons of metal web pages and read countless reviews that state that Raven are poseurs because of this album. Granted, they look like an athletic Twisted Sister and the music is cartoon anthems, but it's not terrible either. Alice Cooper had his "new age" period, Kiss went disco in the early 80's, Judas Priest had their commercial sellout "Turbo," Accept had their pop-metal "Eat the Heat" yet nobody dismisses these bands as worthless. I'm sure it was the big label pressure of Sony/Atlantic that had everything to do with Raven's sound change. For some reason, big labels tend to destroy good metal. Hmm, just an observation, but I think Raven have redeemed themselves from this over and over.

Mad EP Raven-Mad EP 1986

I've had a few people inform me that I am missing the "Mad" EP. Unfortunately, as far as I know, it was never released on a single CD, but all of the songs have been released on CD. "Speed Of The Reflex" is a bonus track on Mayhem Recordīs re-release of "Lifeīs A Bitch". "Do Or Die" & "Gimme Just A Little" were released as bonus tracks on "Stay Hard" and "How Did Ya Get So Crazy" & "See It On TV" on "The Pack Is Back." That's the whole "Mad" EP right there! So while I do not have the EP on a single disc, I do have all the songs off that disc split on three cds. Still if they ever do release this EP I still would like to have it to round out the collection.

Raven-Life's A Bitch (Mayhem) 1987

1. "Savage and the Hungry" (3:47)
2. "Pick Your Window" (3:29)
3. "Life's a Bitch" (3:47)
4. "Never Forgive" (4:38)
5. "Iron League" (3:21)
6. "On the Wings of an Eagle" (6:35)
7. "Overload" (4:18)
8. "You're a Liar" (2:39)
9. "Fuel to the Fire" (3:43)
10. "Only the Strong Survive" (3:45)
11. "Juggernaut" (5:08)
12. "Playing with the Razor" (3:21)
13. "Trigger" (3:34)
14. "Speed of the Reflex" (5:03)

By this point Raven had gotten the glam/commercial metal bug out of their systems and returned to making real heavy metal! Unfortunately, because of their bad decision in direction, they lost momentum BIG TIME, and their fan base diminished. Too bad because "Life's A Bitch" is a return to form. My copy is a re-issue on Mayhem, which includes two bonus tracks, but has little in the way of liner notes or photos. The original was released on Atlantic but due to "poor albums sales" Raven was dropped from the big label after this disc. Probably the best thing that ever happened to them.

I saw Raven around this time at the Penny Archade in Rochester, NY when they opened for Motorhead. Although it is a long story that I won't go into, I can honestly say that events at this concert changed my life.

Nothing Exceeds Like Excess Raven-Nothing Exceeds Like Excess (Combat) 1988

1."Behemoth" -instrumental (1:05)
2. "Die for Allah" (4:58)
3. "Gimme A Break" (3:19)
4. "Into the Jaws of Death" (6:08)
5. "In the Name of Our Lord" (3:46)
6. "Stick It" (3:10)
7. "Lay Down the Law" (4:45)
8. "You Gotta Screw Loose" (4:22)
9. "Thunderlord" (4:30)
10. "The King" (4:25)
11. "Hard As Nails" (5:06)
12. "Kick Your Ass" (3:18)

The first album without Mark "Wacko" Hunter who quit for reasons I do not know. I do know he went on to do some producing including a couple of obscure thrash bands; Killjoy and Gothic Slam. Wacko's replacement was Joe Hasselvander, formerly of Armageddon, who has as of 1999 been with the band as long as Wacko was. Anyhow, "Nothing Exceeds" was Raven's attempt to regain the fans they lost because of their big label, commercial failures that proceeded this album. This new cd was so far removed from being commercial that it actually suffers as it has very few hooks. What the band focused on was playing as fast as they possibly could with John Gallagher sucking helium before he sang each note. Still, not a bad speed metal album. My favorite track is actually "Into the Jaws of Death" because they slow it down a bit and allow the riffs to groove. "Die for Allah" is yet another song that focuses on the atrocities committed by the religious. At least this time it's not Christianity that's under fire. This was actually the last record I bought from Raven before getting rid of all my vinyl. It was also the first cd I bought as I found it used for $2.91. Since it was released on the Combat label, I assume this discs is out of print in the U.S. 1999 saw the re-release of this disc on Century Media Germany. The reissue features one bonus track, a live "bootleg" version of "Lay Down the Law".

Raven also released two live tracks ("Into the Jaws of Death" & "Gimme a Break") on Combat's Ultimate Revenge 2: Soundtrack.

Architect of Fear Raven-Architect of Fear (Steamhammer) 1991

1. "Architect of Fear Intro" instrumental (1:21)
2. "Architect of Fear" (4:01)
3. "Disciple" (4:03)
4. "Got the Devil" (4:39)
5. "Part of the Machine" (3:59)
6. "Under the Skin" (5:27)
7. "White Hot Anger" (5:31)
8. "Can't Run & Hide" (2:48)
9. "Blind Leading the Blind" (5:03)
10. "Relentless" (3:49)
11. "Just Let Me Go" (6:08)
12. "Heart Attack" (3:52)
13. "Sold Down the River" (3:52)

1991 and Raven are back to earth-shattering, speed-incrusted Raven-lunacy. This is just a great disc. It's such a travesty that so many have given up on this band as they have so much life in them. I'm not sure that this disc was ever released in the US. My copy is a German import, not unlike most of the rest of my Raven collection. Favorite tracks are the title track, "Disciple" and "White Hot Anger."

Heads Up Raven-Heads Up (Steamhammer) 1993

1. "Hell On Earth" (4:57)
2. "World Comes Tumbling Down" (4:43)
3. "Stay Human" (4:32)
4. "Still Hungry" (3:47)
5. "All For One" -live (3:52)
6. "Into the Jaws of Death" -live (3:56)
7. "Can't Run & Hide" -live (2:40)

Very nice German EP featuring four new songs and three live offerings. The new tracks are all over-the-top Raven lunacy. Great heavy metal! The live tracks are excellent as well. There is also a Japanese version of this that supposedly has a different track listing. Will have to keep an eye out for that one. Once again, thanks to my brother of metal Olaf for hooking me up.

Glow Raven-Glow (SPV) 1994

1. "Watch You Drown" (4:36)
2. "Spite" (2:26)
3. "True Believer" (4:42)
4. "So Close" (4:14)
5. "Alter" (4:33)
6. "The Dark Side" (3:52)
7. "The Rocker" (3:07)
8. "Turn on You" (3:43)
9. "Far and Wide" (5:21)
10. "Victim" (3:51)
11. "Gimme A Reason" (4:02)
12. "Slip Away" (4:04)

When I found out that Raven covered a Thin Lizzy tune I had to find this disc. Their version of "The Rocker" is excellent, although not as over the top as their version of "Born to Be Wild" (One of the greatest cover songs ever!). To my delight, the whole disc is quite good. Much better than what I expected actually. The raw Raven sound is back, although the production is much cleaner than their earlier albums. There are a few slower songs that are actually quite good. I really am surprised at how much I like this disc. I listen to it quite often. Of the later day Raven albums, this would probably be my favorite.

Destroy All Monsters Destroy All Monsters-Live in Japan (Steamhammer) 1995

1. "Victim" (4:12)
2. "Live at the Inferno" (4:45)
3. "Crash! Bang! Wallop" (2:46)
4. "True Believer" (4:40)
5. "Into the Jaws of Death/Hard as Nails/Die for Allah" (9:35)
6. "Mark Gallagher guitar solo" (2:16)
7. "Speed of the Reflex/
................Run Silent, Run Deep/Mind Over Metal" (6:30)
8. "Gimme a Reason" (4:46)
9. "Inquisitor" (4:20)
10. "For the Future" (4:01)
11. "John Gallagher bass solo" (1:24)
12. "Architect of Fear" (4:56)
13. "White Hot Anger" (4:45)
14. "Joe Hasselvander drum solo" (1:34)
15 Medley: "Break the Chain/Symptom of the Universe/
Won't Get Fooled Again/Summertime Blues/
Break the Chain" (13:20)

Mark Gallagher

I'm not sure I like this one as much as I like "Live at the Inferno" but I haven't lived with this one as long either, so nastolgia could be a factor in that. One thing for sure is that at times John's voice sounds a bit tired on this disc. Still the energy factor is high. The selection of songs is excellent as well. As a matter of fact, I found it interesting that Raven didn't play any of their more commercial late 80's material, but rather focused on the first three albums then skipped over to some of their excellent 90's material from "Glow" and "Architect of Fear." What is also great about this disc is that it is obviously "live" without much overdubbing or studio fixes. Every guitar squeek, rim shot, and vocal crack is there, just like you were there for the performance. Sometimes this doesn't work, depending on the band, but for Raven it works well as overpolishing usually destroys their charisma.

"Symptom of the Universe" is a Black Sabbath song, "Won't Get Fooled Again/Summertime Blues" is a cover of the Who.

Everything Louder Raven-Everything Louder (SPV) 1997

1. "Blind Eye" (3:50)
2. "No Pain" (3:33)
3. "Sweet Jane" (5:01)
4. "Holy Grail" (3:51)
5. "Hungry" (5:01)
6. "Insane" (4:52)
7. "Everything Louder" (5:56)
8. "???" (:29)
9. "Between the Wheels" (3:43)
10. "Losing My Mind" (3:07)
11. "Get Your Fingers Out" (3:40)
12. "Wilderness of Broken Glass" (6:06)
13. "!!!" (:13)
14. "Fingers Do the Walking" (4:06)
15. "Bonus" (1:37)

1997 and Raven are sounding as rabid and Raven-ous as ever! According to the liner notes, this disc was recorded live in the studio. It seems to me that Raven sound best when recorded like this. Raven's first three albums, which many consider to be their best, were all recorded this way. I know many people have dismissed this band due to some of their more commercial recordings in the late 80's, but when a band returns to greatness, why not return to them? The bonus track? Well this is what John Gallagher has to say on the Raven website: "the "bonus" is from a rehearsal tape i found ..every time one of us screwed up, we'd play this dumb "happy" tune...here it is along with rockabilly hell!"

Raw Tracks Raven-Raw Tracks (Massacre) 1999

1. "Firepower" -live 1984 (3:09)
2. "Don't Need Your Money" -live 1984 (3:14)
3. "Savage & Hungy" -demo 1984 (3:54)
4. "Nightmare Ride" -demo 1984 (3:39)
5. "Get It Right" -live 1985 (4:18)
6. "On & On" -live 1985 (4:01)
7. "Extract the Action" -live 1985 (4:15)
8. "Barbarian" -demo 1984 (4:23)
9. "Hot Moves" -demo 1984 (3:38)
10. "Rock Until You Drop" -live (3:47)
11. "Juggernaut" -live 1989 (4:03)
12. "Thunderlord" -live 1989 (4:30)
13. "Gimme A Break" -live 1989 (3:15)
14. "Move Over" -demo (3:14)
15. "White Hot Anger" -live (4:36)
16. "Alter" -live 1995 (4:30)
17. "Tie Your Mother Down" -live 1995 (4:00)
18. "Architect of Fear" -live (4:10)
19. "Enemy" -live (3:36)

A nice collection of demo, live, and unreleased material. The sound quality is as the title suggests but is actually quite good for the most part, especially considering some of this stuff was from bootlegs. "Hot Moves" probably has the worst sound of any of the demo tracks. "Thunderlord" is the worst of the live tracks, sounding like it was recorded using a small condenser mic. Still, overall this disc is very listenable. I've said it before, but Raven are one of those bands that sound best when heard in their most raw form. That is what this disc is-Raw Raven!. Nice booklet complete with lyrics, notes about the songs, and tons of photos. "Raw Tracks" is probably the closest thing we'll ever get to a Raven box set. "Tie Your Mother Down" is a loose and live Queen cover.

One For All Raven-One For All (Metal Blade) 2000

1.   "Seven Shades" (4:13)
2.   "Double Talk" (3:29)
3.   "Roll with the Pouches" (5:21)
4.   "Get Your Motor Running" (3:36)
5.   "To Be Broken" (4:52)
6.   "Derailed" (3:44)
7.   "Hunger Inside" (4:47)
8.   "Top of the World" (3:47)
9.   "In the Line of Fire" (4:11)
10. "Kangaroo" (3:04)
11. "New Religion" (4:38)
12. "Last Ride" (4:35)

As the name suggests, "One For All" takes up where "All For One" left off and kicks as much buttox as "All For One" ever did. Raven's sound has not really changed much over the years, with the exception of a few attempts at commercialism in the mid 80's. This album was produced by Michael Wagener who has also produced such killer albums as Testament's "Low." "One For All" is the first album that has been readily available in the US since they were dropped from Atlantic many years back. It's nice to have 'em back. Now I'm waiting for the tour.

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