Reviewing a new record by Thunderstick, i.e., the underrated purveyors of NWOBHM, is always a treat and these guys rarely fail to disappoint me. There is an undiluted sense of honesty and purity to their outputs that totally works for me and always manages to pull me in and keep me engaged. Lockdown is really no different in that respect, and it delivers a bunch of raw, well-written, and wonderfully passionate metal songs with a glorious 80s sheen to them. With a strong and skilled line-up, this is undoubtedly the best the band has ever sounded to these ears.  

Tunes such as ‘I’m a Rockstar (in My Head)’ and ‘Snakebite’ are among the catchiest and most easily accessible entries here, but there is in fact a rather good balance and mix between the instantly memorable stuff on the one side and then a few cuts that require a little more patience on the part of the listener before they reveal their many interesting flavors and nuances on the other. Two of its highlights are the brooding and strangely beautiful ‘Warhead’ and the slightly melancholic ‘Torn ‘n’ Twisted’, and one can only hope that we will be able to hear these in a live setting in the future.

Lockdown consists of several juicy metal gems that are utterly irresistible, but if there is a flaw to the record it is its length. At one hour and twenty minutes it does go on for a bit too long and they could have easily omitted three or four tracks in order to make it a more solid output that would never lose its momentum. The first half is more remarkable and noteworthy than the latter but make no mistake; this a cracking album and it is fantastic to hear Raven Blackwing’s voice soar throughout.  

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