Warlock were formed by Rudy Graf, Peter Szigeti, Michael Eurich, and Frank Rittel in Düsseldorf , Germany in 1982. They found a singer, Doro Pesch, and convinced her to leave the band "Snakebite". Warlock played live all over Germany in 1983, gathering fan support, and then recorded a demo in late 1983, which got them signed to Mausoleum Records and later Polydor. In 1987 Warlock managed to make their breakthrough in Europe with their fourth album "Triumph And Agony" and with it also marked the end of ane era for the band. Former members Peter Szigeti (Guitars) and Frank Rittel joined Udo Dirksneider on U.D.O.'s "Animal House". After many, many lineup changes in Warlock, keeping only Doro Pesch as a constant, legal troubles with a former member led the "fifth Warlock album", Force Majeure, to be released under the Doro name. Since then, she has continued a solo career under the name Doro.
Warlock - Burning The Witches (Mercury) 1984
"Burning the Witches" is tight German heavy metal that was quite heavy for their time. Most people associate female metal singer with lightweight metal, but that is not the case here at all. "Sign of Satan" starts things off with a fast and furious riff that is almost identical to Judas Priest's "Freewheel Burning". The heavy songs don't let up until "Without You", which is the first ballad on the disc, and a quite enjoyable one at that. However, the heavy tracks pick right back up with "Metal Racer" which is as as the title suggests. My favorite track on the disc is the awesome title track. This track has a hook that could bring in a whale! I suppose to really enjoy Warlock, one must look beyond the sterotypical lyrics and must also acquire a taste for Doro's vocals, which I happen to like. Beyond that, however, I find this to be an excellent debut from one of Germany's underappreciated exports.
Warlock - Hellbound (Mercury) 1985
Warlock are pure heavy metal. Unlike a majority of the female led metal bands to come out of the 80's, Warlock are not radio-ready pop rock with a metal image. Just take one listen to "Hellbound" or "Earthshaker Rock" and you too will be convinced that Warlock are a mighty metal machine. While there is the one obligatory ballad in "Catch My Heart", for the most part this album rocks. The songwriting here is varied as well with a decent amount of tempo changes between songs. There are the fast rockers like aforementioned "Earthshaker Rock" and album opener "Hellbound", slow driving heavy numbers like "Down and Out" as well as the heavy as a freight train, mid-tempo tracks like "All Night" and "Wrathchild". Both of these songs sport some screaming vocals by Doro Pesch. At times Doro's screams send chills down my spine. She is no pop diva for sure.
Warlock - True As Steel (PolyGram) 1986
1. "Mr. Gold"
"True As Steel" bridges the gap between the pure metal of the band's first two albums and the more commercial metal of the popular "Triumph And Agony".. As such I find this to be Warlock's best release. Unfortunately most people don't seem to agree with me here, but I think that everything is perfectly in place here. From the majestic anthem of the title track to the speed metal of 'Speed Of Sound' to the epic feel of 'Midnight In China' and the excellent ballad 'Love Song', there is plenty of variety to here. Doro has never sounded better. She is singing with power and aggression, yet has a slight sweetness to her voice as well. It's a shame that this CD didn't get better exposure in the U.S. when it was released. It surely should have sold as well as the follow-up, if not better. "True As Steel" is classic, Germany heavy metal. Crank it up!
1. "All We Are"
"Triumph and Agony" was the final album by German metal warriors Warlock and is a classic heavy metal gem. The album was a breakthrough for the band, in both Europe and America, with "All We Are" gaining heavy rotation on heavy metal radio shows. The music is a touch more commercial and polished than past Warlock discs, but still not the pop metal that some might expect. Some songs tend to take on an anthem quality and most are very memorable. "All We Are" is a perfect example. This particular song is still pretty heavy, but has a fist-in-the-air, sing-along quality. I guarantee after hearing this song that you'll walk away singing, "All we are, all we are, we are, we are all, all we need." Follow-up track, "Three Minute Warning", though a bit more up-tempo, has a similar anthemic quality. Other songs such as "Kiss of Death" and "Cold, Cold World" are a bit darker.