Walls Of Jericho (Expanded)
6/9/2006 - Review by: Eric Compton
Helloween - Walls Of Jericho (Expanded Edition) - 2006 - Sanctuary Records
Castle Music begins their "Expanded Edition" re-issue series of the Helloween back catalogue with the band's debut from 1985. This special re-mastered issue of the record also includes the "Judas" EP that is normally packaged with this release. I will say that I believe this release has been re-issued twice thus far, however, this is the first time that we have new liner notes, additional photos from that era of the band's history, as well as special "remixes" that are simply reworkings of some of the album's tracks. I find the photo history of the group very revealing, showing off the original Helloween EP cover as well as some zine articles and reviews from that era. Like the other re-issues of this series, this one features a print interview between Dave Ling of Metal Hammer/Classic Rock and Michael Weikath. Here are some of my favorite parts of that interview:
In regards to being tagged as speed metal Weikath says, "Yeah. Were the people who said that deaf? That's like saying Jesus was a woman. Real speed metal bands Agent Steel and Savage Grace were good and they were fast, but they lacked melody. We were very career-oriented and knew that mixing us up with those bands worked against us."
Ling: Is "Walls Of Jericho" a record you're still proud of?
Weikath: "Yes, I think so. When we made it, we tried to copy the production of the Malice album "In The Beginning". That was our fantasy. I admit that we failed. Harris Johns said what we got to listen to compare the sound we wanted to achieve was a tape recording of the production that Malice had achieved, and one can sure not rely on that."
It was after this record that the band broke big globally. From here the sails were set with the "Keepers" albums one and two, eventually leading the band to some strange ground with "Pink Bubbles Go Ape" and "Chameleon". I will still stick to my guns and continue to say that this album, "Master Of The Rings", and "Better Than Raw" are the best three Helloween records to date.
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