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Articles Home » 1987 Articles » Grim Reaper - 1987 Rock You To Hell
Grim Reaper - 1987 Rock You To Hell

ARTIST: Grim Reaper
ALBUM: Rock You To Hell
SERIAL: 6250-1-R (LP), 6250-2-R (CD)
YEAR: 1987
CD REISSUE: 2011, Southworld (UK), SW0024CD


LINEUP: Steve Grimmett - vocals * Nick Bowcott - guitars * Dave Wanklin - bass *Lee Harris - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Rock You To Hell * 02 Night Of The Vampire * 03 Lust For Freedom * 04 When Freedom Comes Down * 05 Suck It And See * 06 Rock Me Til I Die * 07 You'll Wish That You Were Never Born * 08 Waysted Love * 09 I Want More


One of the greatest mysteries during the 80's hair metal era was the apparent success of UK indie metallers Grim Reaper in the USA. Something must have struck a chord, as these hair merchants who originated as late contenders from the NWOBHM circuit, soon found themselves selling large quantities of their 1984 debut album 'See You In Hell'. The band formed as far back as 1979, and released a 4-track EP during 1982. Originally signed to Ebony Records, the band released their debut in 1983, and by 1984, the band had a distribution deal with RCA to release it in the USA. It did very well, as did the second album 'Fear No Evil'. Grim Reaper's sound could be compared to Iron Maiden, though it was more mainstream and commercial, despite the name, imagery and lyrics. With Steve Grimmett, the vocals compared favorably with a guy like Kal Swann (Tytan and Lion) and Great White's Jack Russell, while guitarist Nick Bowcott was very much a guitar technocrat, who was distinctive for his left handed style. By 1987, the band's sound had migrated to L.A hair metal, with big production and melodic ideals a la Lion and early Great White etc.

The Songs
Grim Reaper deliver eight songs worth, the title track probably the most recognisable (refer the video clip below). Grimmett's melodic and high pitched warbling makes him one of the most effective frontmen in the genre. Bowcott's guitar riffs peel off like sunburn on tracks such as 'When Freedom Comes Down' and 'You'll Wish That You Were Never Born'. The band don't bother mucking around with ballads at any stage during the 30 odd minutes of this album. Both 'Rock Me Til I Die' and 'Waysted Love' keep the tempo ticking over, while 'Suck It And See' veers off to the Saxon side of the alleyway. 'Lust For Freedom' is one of my favourites as a highly addictive anthem, similarly the silly named 'Night Of The Vampire' conjures up visions of razor sharp teeth and blood amid the hammering drumwork and OTT vocals.

In Summary
Despite the popularity of the album, this third album would prove to be the band's final output. Bowcott (who many might remember from reading the mags of the day) was employed as a writer by Circus Magazine, and his articles focused on guitar tab, playing and techniques. He later joined Marshall Amplification as an employee. Grimmett would go to sing with British metallers Onslaught and later on into the 90's Lionsheart. Grim Reaper make for good nostalgia, and I occasionally go back and give these guys a good listen. All three albums are easy enough to find out there in Torrent land. Go discover if you aren't familiar with their music.

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#1 | kim_hp on September 19 2012 21:04:46
There's actually 9 tracks on this record with the last track (missing from the tracklist above) 'I Want More'. At any rate, this is a melodic metal masterpiece in my book.
#2 | gdazegod on September 30 2015 06:05:50
Grim Reaper - 1987 Rock You To Hell
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