Under the Blade
|Under the Blade|
|Studio album by Twisted Sister|
|Released||September 18, 1982|
|Studio||The Barn at Kitchenham Farm, Ashburnham with the RAK Mobile,
I.C.C. Studios, Eastbourne,
Maison Rouge, London, England
|Producer||Pete Way, Mark Mendoza, Dee Snider|
|Twisted Sister chronology|
Under the Blade is the debut studio album by American heavy metal band Twisted Sister, released on Secret Records on September 18, 1982. It featured a very brutal and rough sound, which was eventually totally ignored on a remixed re-release by Atlantic Records on July 14, 1985. The re-release also added a remixed version of the song "I'll Never Grow Up, Now", the band's long forgotten 1979 single. The Atlantic Records release was both a try to emphasize on the commercial success of Stay Hungry and, by then (and for years to come) the only official way to get the album as Secret Records was no more. However, bootlegs with the original mix were still in circulation. On May 31, 2011, Eagle Records re-released Under the Blade in a digital remastered form with the original mix finally restored. Under the Blade has sold over two million copies worldwide.
|Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal||9/10|
In a long article about 80s metal, Tim Holmes of Rolling Stone wrote a contemporary review about Twisted Sister describing them as "the clown heir apparent to the gaping vacancy left by Alice Cooper" and a band who "write(s) songs that have a giddy, street-smart narrative approach and a gritty coherence that metal usually lacks." He also wrote that Under the Blade "is not technically a new album but rather a remix for modern ears" of older music.
Modern reviews are very positive. Greg Prato of AllMusic reminds how the band moved to the UK, which was having a "heavy metal resurgence (dubbed the New Wave of British Heavy Metal)", to record with UFO bassist Pete Way "many of the band's best compositions from their club days" and finds Under the Blade "one of Twisted Sister's hardest rocking albums... highly recommended to lovers of early-'80s British heavy metal." Also Exclaim! reviewer Ian Gormely considers the album "a must for anyone with an interest in the history of American hard rock". Despite "the raw production... and lack of an obvious hit... it laid the groundwork for their future success", thanks also to Twisted Sister's "tongue-in-cheek presentation that latter-day hair metal bands clearly lacked." Adrian Begrand of PopMatters reviews the album as a "near-classic" and "the most ferocious of the band’s career." He writes that the musicians may have "bar band roots", but on the album "the fun side of Twisted Sister is set aside in favor of something a lot darker", which brought to "a hell of a debut that not only connected with British heavy metal fans, but would eventually lead to a contract with Atlantic Records, paving the way to stardom a couple years later." Canadian journalist Martin Popoff considers Under the Blade "dead serious despite the garish imagery, a good four-fifths of it rocking with hellacious clout, attitude and clever economy" and remarks how the influence of Judas Priest is evident in Dee Snider's compositions.
In 2005, Under the Blade was ranked number 387 in Rock Hard magazine's book of The 500 Greatest Rock & Metal Albums of All Time.
All tracks written by Dee Snider.
|1.||"What You Don't Know (Sure Can Hurt You)"||4:45|
|2.||"Bad Boys (of Rock 'n' Roll)"||3:20|
|3.||"Run for Your Life"||3:28|
|4.||"Sin After Sin"||3:23|
|5.||"Shoot 'Em Down"||3:53|
|2.||"Under the Blade"||4:40|
|3.||"Tear It Loose"||3:08|
|4.||"I'll Never Grow Up, Now" (1985 Atlantic re-issue only)||4:27|
|5.||"Day of the Rocker"||5:03|
The special edition, released on CD, contains the original album, the complete and remastered Ruff Cuts EP, and an edited live version of "Shoot 'Em Down" from an UK-sampler called "Reading Rock Volume One". Also, the appearance of Twisted Sister at the 1982 Reading Festival is on a bonus DVD, together with interviews from the band members.
- "What You Don't Know (Sure Can Hurt You)" - 4:46
- "Bad Boys (Of Rock 'n' Roll)" - 3:21
- "Run for Your Life" - 3:28
- "Sin After Sin" - 3:22
- "Shoot 'Em Down" - 3:54
- "Destroyer" - 4:09
- "Under the Blade" - 4:38
- "Tear It Loose" - 3:09
- "Day of the Rocker" - 5:02††
- "What You Don't Know (Sure Can Hurt You)" - 5:32†
- "Shoot 'Em Down" - 3:56†
- "Under the Blade" - 4:41†
- "Leader of the Pack" - 4:01†
- "Shoot 'Em Down (live)" - 3:37
†from the 1982 Ruff Cutts EP
††"Day of the Rocker" contains few seconds extra after fade out (4:55 to 5:02) with the final phrase "Rock, Rock, Rock!"
- Band members
- Dee Snider - lead vocals, assistant producer
- Eddie "Fingers" Ojeda - lead & rhythm guitar, backing vocals
- Jay Jay French - rhythm & lead guitar, backing vocals
- Mark "The Animal" Mendoza - bass, backing vocals, assistant producer, remix producer, engineer
- A. J. Pero - drums, percussion
- Joey Brighton - drums (tracks 10, 11 on Special edition)
- Tony Petri - drums (side b track 4 on re-issue 1985 edition; tracks 12, 13 on Special edition)
- Guest musician
- "Fast" Eddie Clarke - second guitar solo on "Tear It Loose"
- Pete Way - producer, executive producer
- Will Gosling, Craig Thomson, Dave Boscombe - engineers, mixing
- Mark Mendoza, Danny McNerney - 1985 remix engineers
- Fin Costello - cover concept and photography
|1982||UK Albums Chart||70|
|1985||New Zealand Album Charts||40|
|Billboard 200 (USA)||125|
- Begrand, Adrien (June 16, 2011). "Twisted Sister - Under the Blade: Special Edition". PopMatters. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
- Prato, Greg. "Twisted Sister Under the Blade review". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved April 29, 2013.
- Popoff, Martin (November 1, 2005). The Collector's Guide to Heavy Metal: Volume 2: The Eighties. Burlington, Ontario, Canada: Collector's Guide Publishing. pp. 368–369. ISBN 978-1894959315.
- Holmes, Tim (September 12, 1985). "Album Reviews: Twisted Sister - Under the Blade". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on October 1, 2007. Retrieved April 29, 2013.
- Gormely, Ian (May 31, 2011). "Twisted Sister - Under the Blade". Exclaim!. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
- [...], Rock Hard (Hrsg.). [Red.: Michael Rensen. Mitarb.: Götz Kühnemund] (2005). Best of Rock & Metal die 500 stärksten Scheiben aller Zeiten (in German). Königswinter: Heel. p. 54. ISBN 3-89880-517-4.
- "Twisted Sister Official Charts". Official Charts Company. Retrieved October 28, 2016.
- "Twisted Sister - Under the Blade (Album)". Charts.org.nz. Media Control Charts. Retrieved October 29, 2016.
- "Under the Blade Billboard Albums". Allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Archived from the original on August 5, 2012. Retrieved April 29, 2013.