Savage – “Loose ‘N Lethal” (1983)

Loose ‘N Lethal is simply a case of four restless and wild kids delivering a heads down, smash and grab, one-dimensional sonic storm.  Loose ‘N Lethal was released in 1983 by Ebony Records in the United Kingdom.  Unfortunately, but unsurprisingly, Loose ‘N Lethal suffers from the botched production typical of an Ebony Records release (see also Chateaux’s Fire Power and Grim Reaper’s See You In Hell).  Loose ‘N Lethal‘s production is especially bad (even by Ebony standards).  The vocals and guitars are screechy, scratchy, and redlined.  While some (actually many) admire the plug n’ play, smokin’ valves, rawer than raw guitar sound of this record, I feel it’s just a little bit too blown out for my tastes.  It literally sounds like the amps are on fire (which IS more metal than thou, I must concede, but can cause ear fatigue over the course of an entire LP).   

Loose ‘N Lethal kind of reminds me of the NWOBHMers Holocuast on their 1981 debut The Nightcomers.  The two bands share the same youthful, single-minded purpose to bang thy head recklessly and relentlessly.  Savage’s Loose ‘N Lethal is kind of a minor NWOBHM fave (classic, even?) due in part to its connection to the Metallica legend (Metallica covered Let It Loose in their early days).  However, I think that in the late NWOBHM year of 1983, one should expect a little more than what Loose ‘N Lethal pours forth.  It is certainly admirable in its metal-up-yer-ass attitude, but not nearly as enjoyable as the awesome cover art would have me hoping for.  Favorite track: Let It Loose.  Released on CD in 1997 by Neat Records and Metal Blade Records.  My score: C+


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