Icecross - s/t. 1973 Iceland

Icecross - s/t. 1973 private

CD reissue: 2013 Rockadrome (USA)

LP reissue: 2013 Rockadrome (USA)

Packaging: I first stumbled onto an original of this album in 1988 for cheap, not knowing quite what it was, but I just knew it had to be worth something. It was, in fact, probably the first major rarity I tried to trade away (it was a little outside my interest area back then). Even at that time, it was going for $300, which was an enormous sum in those days. Today, you'll find one in similar shape for less than double that, so its price trajectory hasn't been near what we've seen with UK, German, and Italian albums from the same time frame (fortunately I kept most of those). In the process of working a deal, I received a lot of bad advice. And as it turns out, that's because these guys were greedy bastards and wanted the album for themselves! I had one great offer in particular from a gentleman in Spain that I turned down because of this. I still regret it and I didn't get near what I wanted from the album in the end. Well, you have to learn this game somehow. I put that copy on cassette, and many years later picked up a boot CD which can now be kicked out the door... because....

--- We now finally have legit reissues of this classic, on both LP and CD. I went for the CD, and it comes with fantastic liner notes, photos, and a great sound. There were no bonus tracks to offer. Rockadrome continues to be the leader of quality reissues in the hard rock realm.

Notes: I've owned this album in one form or another for 25 years, and it remains one of my all time favorite pure hard rock albums. For 1973, as others have said, this is frighteningly ahead of its time, predating the entire 80s metal movement by a full 7 years. While Side 1 plays it a bit safe with the tepid opening 'Wandering Around' and the excellent, but albeit softer, ballad 'A Sad Man's Story', Side 2 is a blitzkrieg of heavy riffs, powerful vocals, blistering leads, and absolutely insane drumming. When talking Scandinavian hard rock, about the only other album with these type of nimble fingered acid leads is Elonkorjuu, though within a slightly different musical context. This is essential listening for fans of creative hard rock who enjoy hearing the history of the style.

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