Paul Di’Anno – “Hell Over Waltrop – Live In Germany” (Metalville)
Battle Helm Rating
‘…here’s a song from when I was back in the Spice Girls…as Ugly Spice..! No mistaking, the cockney wit of this legendary persona is still as sharp as when he was Iron Maiden’s vocalist. In a rollacoaster of a career that has never seen him leave those glory days comes this beast of a live album, proudly attesting to the legacy made through albums like “Iron Maiden” and “Killers”. Indeed, if you miss those days of raw, punk fuelled heavy metal fury, then the 14 ripping tracks here will no doubt do the trick – if your neck muscles can bear up to it all! A decidedly dodgy affair that goes back to 2006, when Di’anno was blagged to play Parkfest Waltrop, a city funfair more associated with alt rock, pop and even disco, yet in the hands of this master front man, is mutated from a buncha poseurs into a rabid crowd, roaring and chanting for more, “Hell Over Waltrop – Live In Germany” captures The Beast unleashed !!! Still, it’s pretty easy to see why when you’ve got classics like the still shocking ‘Prowler’, the very suave ‘Murders In The Rue Morgue’ and a simply overpowering ‘Remember Tomorrow’ in your repertoire why any mainstream rock fan’s closet fantasies of something more reckless and indeed, nasty are completely fulfilled thanks to the viciously tight and energetic performance of the band, especially on ‘Phantom Of The Opera’ and ‘Transylvania’, that take you right back to the steaming days of the Ruskin Arms and Maiden’s unforgettable headline at Reading Festival 1980. For his part, Di’anno shows why he was worthy as Maiden’s vocalist, offering a hugely respectable range of vocal styles from passionate singing on the ballad ‘The Living Dead’ to his stock honed in punk gruff style to even death metal roars – simply amazing. By the time the band hit ‘Running Free’, the pounding drums and ripping guitars tear it up as Di’anno has the crowd eating out’ve his hand, singing out the irresistible chorus to cap off nothing short of a top performance. If this is hell, then I truly must be in heaven!