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Articles Home » 1984 Articles » Bullet - 1984 No Mercy
Bullet - 1984 No Mercy

ARTIST: Bullet
ALBUM: No Mercy
LABEL: Heavy Metal
YEAR: 1984
CD REISSUE: 1997, High Vaultage, HV-1018


LINEUP: Klaus Thiel - vocals, guitars * Jrgen Graf - guitars * Fitty Wienhold - bass * Mike Lichtenberg - drums

TRACK LISTING: 01 Look Out * 02 Drunken Nights * 03 I Sold My Soul To Rock N Roll * 04 No Mercy * 05 One Way Ticket * 06 Down By The Neonlights * 07 Take You Out Tonight * 08 All I Need Is You * 09 Midnight Stalker * 10 Baby We Can Talk

The breakthrough of The Scorpions into the heavy metal mainstream was a boost for the West German scene in general, allowing a slew of similar acts the chance to emulate the success of Klaus Meine and company. Looking back few really achieved lasting success, only Accept coming really close, with dozens of others on the fringe, many who still exist in one form or another (Sinner, Mad Max, Grave Digger etc). One who never quite made the grade was Bullet, who had formed back in 1978 under the uninspiring moniker of Teaser. Of course that was the name of Adrian Vandenberg's Dutch outfit, something which necessitated a name change to Bullet. With the aid of Scorpions producer Dieter Dierks Bullet made their first foray into the studio, the result of which was 1982's 'Execution'. The band toured with Saxon and Iron Maiden among others and following a couple of lineup changes the band released this, their most well known effort. It didn't catapult them into stardom however, the quality not quite there overall.

The Songs
That's not to say the album isn't without its moments, opening track 'Look Out' getting things off to a flying start, a blatant copy of The Scorpions 'Blackout' in its overall approach. The chorus is infectious enough, which helps overlook some of the similarities between the two. 'Drunken Nights' starts off with some riffs that could have come off an early Ozzy Osbourne solo album, but the vocal melodies are uniquely German and it's quite heavy overall to be honest. The tone shifts dramatically for 'I Sold My Soul to Rock 'N' Roll', which is almost Status Quo like boogie. This is a good change in direction, albeit briefly. The title track takes a pure metal stance, taking the Accept route and almost with as much clout, especially when they opt for speed. Things change again with 'One Way Ticket', which has Krokus written all over it. Just listen to the riffs and you'll catch my drift. After this onslaught of excellent songs things predictably degenerate somewhat, beginning with 'Down By The Neon Lights', which has a radio ready hook which really doesn't do much for me melody wise. The Scorpions influence is heard once again on 'Take You Out Tonight', which takes a while building up to nothing spectacular and perhaps didn't need to be over five minutes long. 'All I Need Is Love' is straight ahead metal once more, but 'Midnight Stalker' is just a repeat of what's already been heard earlier and better. Sadly the album ends on a fluff note, 'Baby We Can Talk' a half-hearted power ballad which was uncalled for this late in the album. It's clearly a stab at a track like The Scorpions (again) 'When The Smoke Goes Down' complete with similar guitar lines. Hey if it worked for them..

In Summary
For Bullet similar results were not forthcoming however and by 1986 the band were finished. Of note Wienhold and Graf both played with U.D.O., something Wienhold continues to do to this day. The album seems to have attracted somewhat of a cult appeal over the years, something it perhaps isn't quite deserving of in retrospect. The opening half of the album borders on classic, with the remainder the complete opposite. This prevents 'No Mercy' from attaining such a status, but it is worth hearing for the five superior tracks.

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#1 | opbrekke on February 05 2012 02:26:52
Got both albums and like them better than the reviewer it seems. Solid, though not spectacular German metal of the era. Actually prefer this over the Swedish band with the same name. Ironically they are somewhat similar in style.
#2 | reyno-roxx on February 05 2012 13:15:00
I much prefer 'Execution' to this album, but both were nicely overhauled on CD by High Vaulage and well worth picking up.
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