Goldmine reached out to members of Uriah Heep about the music on their new three disc package (two CDs and one DVD), containing 14 live songs from May 18, 1989 and a 30-minute interview from the day of the concert.
To win a copy of the 3-disc package (above) see below for details.
By Warren Kurtz
On May 18, 1989, Uriah Heep returned to London for a 14-song homecoming concert. They had toured the world beginning in the early ‘70s, building quite a concert following, including performing in the former Soviet Union in 1987. Nine of the songs in this set are from the ‘80s and five came from their classic early ‘70s era. The lineup featured Mick Box on guitar, who was their sole original member by that point in time and continues today with the group. Lee Kerslake was on drums, who first appeared on the group’s 1972 “Demons and Wizards” album. Trevor Bolder was on bass, who joined the group for their 1977 “Firefly” album. Lead vocalist Bernie Shaw and keyboardist Phil Lanzon entered the band in 1986 and continue with the quintet today.
With the concert heavy on ‘80s content, we reached out to keyboardist Phil Lanzon on a couple of those songs and he told Goldmine, “The song ‘Cry Freedom’ is about the restrictions of former communist Russia that Mick and I picked up on from our historic visit in 1987. It is the tale of a talented ice skater who tells her sad tale to a Westerner, who falls in love with her.” The two members co-wrote this song with the key chorus line, “Cry freedom, sweet freedom.” This line immediately reminds listeners of the group’s 1973 album “Sweet Freedom,” which also contained the single “Stealin’.” Phil Lanzon continued, “I wrote ‘Mr. Majestic’ as a fictional story of how the American west was won through the struggle of individuals to make their mark and survive those cutthroat times.” The line “how the west was won” is a key element of the song.
On the ‘70s songs included in the concert recording, Phil Lanzon shared, “’Easy Livin’ is classic in style and holds a message rooted in ‘70s rock. ‘July Morning’ is equally classic. Although the playing is very simple and basic, the notes shine through on this great song.” On the latter, Bernie Shaw reached some amazing high vocals.
In our December 2017 Goldmine British Rock Issue, Lee Zimmerman conducted a two-page interview with Mick Box. He asked the guitarist about his favorite Uriah Heep albums who replied, “Probably the ‘Demons and Wizards’ era was good, as it took us on to the world stage.” In addition to “Easy Livin’” from that album, “The Wizard” is also included in this live concert with Mick Box playing both acoustic and electric guitars.
On the DVD, viewers can enjoy seeing Phil Lanzon bouncing while he plays “Stealin’” on the organ. It is fun to watch the one-handed electric guitar fretboard playing of Mick Box as part of his extended heavy metal solo at the beginning of “Gypsy.” The DVD’s final performance features Lee Kerslake’s lengthy drum solo and audience interaction, with increasing tempo, leading into “Look at Yourself.”
The concert covers a CD-and-a-half. At the end of the second CD is a 30-minute interview by the late British DJ Chris Tetley with three of group’s members. Mick Box stated that their third album, “Look at Yourself,” gave the quintet the direction where they wanted to go. Looking back at past group members, he spoke highly of John Lawton’s powerful vocals, who joined the group in the late ‘70s for three of their albums, from the German hard rock band Lucifer’s Friend. Trevor Bolder spoke of his work with David Bowie which includes the classic album “Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars.” Bernie Shaw revealed that he sang a lot of Uriah Heep songs in bands in his native Canada, before joining the band.
To win a sealed copy of Uriah Heep’s “Raging Through the Silence” live 3-disc package, all you have to do is put your email address in the box below by January15, 11:59 p.m. You will immediately be entered in the Giveaway and as a bonus you will receive Goldmine’s informative weekly eNewsletter (collecting news/tips and exclusive articles and interviews with your favorite classic artists). We will randomly draw a winner from the entrants. We have two packages to give away, so your chances are doubled.