Yes, boys and girls, Blacksmith is back and ready to rock your face off.
The band was one of Nippertown’s premier metal bands back in the late ’80s, and whether it was the original line-up with howling vamp Heidi Black at the microphone or the later incarnation with Malcolm “Mania” Lovegrove commandeering the stage, Blacksmith always knew how to put on a show.
With guitarist David Smith leading the band, Blacksmith cranked out a killer self-titled EP in 1986 (with Black) and followed it up with the power-pounding full-lengther, “Fire From Within” on Tropical Records in 1989.
But by 1992, the band had packed it in, and it looked like Blacksmith was history. Fortunately, history was proven wrong, and Blacksmith has risen phoenix-like to return to the stage this weekend with a line-up that features Smith, Lovegrove, drummer Chris Caglione and bassist John Dodge.
“We are doing a big show on Saturday (March 24) at Trick Shot Billiards in Clifton Park,” says bandleader-guitarist Smith, “really our first live show locally in 20 years.”
Back in the saddle after 20 years? How did this happen?
“Well, the resurrection came about in November of 2010 when I contacted David about re-issuing the band’s back catalog,” explains Jeremy Golden, the owner of Heaven and Hell Records, based in North Carolina. “I did not expect this to lead to what it has.”
What he means is that Blacksmith has officially risen from the grave. Last year, Heaven and Hell Records released “Strike While the Iron’s Hot” as part of their Lost Relics series. The disc not only features the tracks from both of Blacksmith’s long out-of-print two discs, but also a bonus DVD featuring a bunch of live footage from J.B. Theater, the Sandpiper, Transworld Music and the Burlington Civic Center. (There’s also a fab flashback clip from the short-lived local TV show, “Rock 10 with Mason & Sheehan.”)
But that’s only the beginning. The record label will also be issuing “Time Out of Mind,” a “lost” album that Blacksmith recorded in 1991 which never saw the light of day.
And if that’s not enough, the band is hard at work at a brand new album, “Last of a Dying Breed,” which is slated for release later this year.
After Saturday’s show, Blacksmith is ready to hit the road again, too. “This summer we are heading over to Europe to play Headbangers Open Air Fest in Germany,” Smith reveals, “and we’ll also be playing Chicago’s Ragnarokk Metal Apocalypse fest.”