Published on August 10th, 2016 | by Justin G.0
Originally released in 1982, Firedance was the debut album from Shiva, one of the more obscure (and more interesting) bands in the legendary New Wave of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) scene. The Bristol-based power trio had more in common with Canadian prog/hard rock bands like Rush and Triumph than Maiden or Saxon.
Shiva’s brand of prog rock was actually pretty heavy, and qualified as metal by that era’s standards. Think Rush and Triumph with a heavy dose of Riot. The songs are trippy and fantasy-based, but there’s a very satisfying metallic crunch to them. John Hall’s vocals are on the high end of the spectrum, further solidifying the Rush and Triumph comparisons, and are perfect for the kind of storytelling Shiva does on Firedance.
Firedance is a bit of an odd entry in the NWOBHM history, but it’s a good one. Fans of White Spirit, Diamond Head and Saracen will definitely enjoy this one, and for serious NWOBHM collectors it’s a must-have album. Beyond that, Firedance should appeal to fans of the late ‘70s and early ‘80s harder-edged prog bands, especially Rush and Triumph.
Reissue Notes: Firedance was finally reissued in 2015 by the No Remorse label. The reissue features remastered audio and two bonus tracks from the Rock Lives On 7” single. The liner notes are pretty weak compared to the average Rock Candy or Lemon NWOBHM reissue, but it’s so good to finally have this one back in print that it doesn’t matter that much.
Summary: This is a much needed official reissue of a real NWOBHM gem.