Tokyo Blade – Night of the Blade… The Night Before Review

Please, pay attention to one very important thing. This album isn’t the most famous and important Tokyo Blade album. When someone asks about good intentions in Metal that backfired, please, give this album as one of the best examples. 

Tokyo Blade were one of the most promising NWOBHM bands of the early 1980s. Their first release kindly named “Tokyo Blade” was an example of how a band could be so melodic, so aggressive, and yet a powerhouse of riffs and catchy choruses. I still remember the day I bought it only because of the art cover. I mean I didn’t know the band and the price was really good. So, I thought ‘What the hell!’ I got to tell you it’s one of the best Metal album that I’ve heard in my life. The kind of album the fan never forgets. That was it.

Ok, then, so now we have the following album “Night of the Blade… The Night Before” an album that the critic and the fans, in a rare common understanding, hated. I know hate is such a powerful word, but I guess in this case it expresses the right meaning of the general feeling regarding to the album. So much was expected from it, I mean, at least an album with the same power and grip and ferocious riffing and creative instrumental, but nah Tokyo Blade decided to take the same path many other bands did, that is, sugared and watered their music to apply for a bigger audience. Ok, to be fair, recording company helped a lot making them change the vocalist. Guess what? Backfired as all their peers. Today, listening to it more than thirty years ago I don’t feel the same. Now I see that some songs as the tittle track “Night of the Blade… The Night Before” have most of the feeling of the previous album. However, many others as “Rock Me to the Limit” are really disappointing. There are moments that the fan thinks that “Night of the Blade… The Night Before” will finally take off and reach the same woundrous level of its previous as in “Warrior of the Rising Sun” which though it’s a slower, almost a ballad, track has the same sharp guitars with incredible riffing and an astonishing drumming. Or “Unleash the Beast” with the amazing guitar duels. But, there is something missing. That’s the feeling.

I have just one more thing to say about “Night of the Blade… The Night Before” and, that is, if you haven’t ever heard “Tokyo Blade” or has never known anything about it, I’m sure “Night of the Blade… The Night Before” will please you. In fact, ractionally speaking as more than thirty years have passed, it’s not a bad album. It’s not only as good and ingenious as “Tokyo Blade.” That’s it. It’s one more good album, not THE album. Of course, we praise this kind of rerelease of classic albums that High Roller Records is doing.

Ah, by the way, one thing I didn’t know, Tokyo Blade are still active. It’s hard to say, but unfortunatelly that ship has sailed. You know, Tokyo Blade were to be the next band, if you know what I’m saying.

Tokyo Blade “Night of the Blade… The Night Before” was released on April 30th via High Roller Records.

Track Listing:

  1. Someone to Love
  2. Night of the Blade
  3. Rock Me to the Limit
  4. Warrior of the Rising Sun
  5. Unleash the Beast
  6. Love Struck
  7. Dead of the Night
  8. Lightning Strikes (Straight Through the Heart)

Watch “Night of the Blade” official video here: