Published on December 3rd, 2016 | by Justin G.
Chateaux: Chained and Desperate
A latecomer to the legendary New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) scene, Cheltenham-based Chateaux released their debut album – Chained and Desperate – in 1983. The band was on the Ebony Records roster and featured one Steve Grimmett (of Grim Reaper fame) on vocals.
It’s hard to hear any album with Steve Grimmett on vocals and not think Grim Reaper, especially one released the same year as See You in Hell, but Chateaux had their own sound, based in large part on Tim Broughton’s dirty, biker metal guitar work. That raw sound was a direct “silk and steel” contrast to Grimmett’s powerful, higher-octave vocals. There’s a bit of Cloven Hoof, Battleaxe and Savage to these songs, which have that same kind of raw and edgy vibe. Highlights here include “Shine on Forever,” the title track, and of course the powerful “Spirit of the Chateaux.” And “Straight to the Heart” is probably the closest thing here to a Grim Reaper song.
I can’t quite call this a NWOBHM must-have, but man, if classic British heavy metal is your thing you really ought to have Chained and Desperate on your shelf. Fans of Grimmett’s work in Grim Reaper especially need this one.
Reissue Notes: The No Remorse label reissued Chained and Desperate earlier this year, making it the first time this album was released on CD. Well, the songs were all included on the 2003 Fight to the Last anthology, but that’s long out of print and fetching big bucks on the secondary market now. The Chained and Desperate reissue features newly remastered audio and the 2-song 1982 Young Blood single included as bonus tracks. The songs all sound great, but the presentation is bare-bones, which is unfortunate. An essay/interview and some vintage photos and press clippings would have made this a really deluxe reissue.
Summary: It's a pretty basic reissue, but this album desperately needed reissuing.