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Buzz Stage: Raven at Reggie’s • October 11 • Chicago: Illinois Entertainer

Raven

tuesday october 11

Reggies

Chicago, IL

by Kelley Simms

Raven, three stalwarts of heavy metal, have been battling in the music business for nearly five decades. Formed in 1974 in Newcastle, England, by the Gallagher brothers – bassist/vocalist John and guitarist Mark – Raven was part of the fledgling New Wave Of British Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) scene along with other fledgling bands such as Saxon, Angel Witch, Diamond Head. , Pan Tang’s Tygers, Iron Maiden and fellow Satan.

The group is celebrating the 40th anniversary of the release of their second album, wiped outand will perform the album in its entirety with other shining gems from their illustrious career at Reggies on October 11. With Raven’s long history in music, Chicago has been one of the band’s favorite places to play since their debut.

“(Chicago has) always been a big show for us from the very first one, which was at the subway on the Kill them all for one Tour (August 12, 1983, with Metallica),” John explained in a recent phone interview. “We played at Aragon (Ballroom) with Tank. We played Aragon with Yngwie Malmsteen the day after Cliff Burton died.

We’ve played Reggies several times, and Reggies is great; the people are great, and the crowds are great. It’s a big metal city; the fans really get into it. We’ve had a lot of friends over the years, and that’s always been a positive on the tour.

Although some tracks on the album made the setlist for years, playing the entire wiped out cover to cover is a special occasion. ‘Faster than the speed of light’ has been in every gig for many years at this point,” John says. “Fire Power” has been done quite often. We brought back “Chainsaw” a few years ago. We played almost everything around 1982 except a few songs; “To the Limit/To the Top”, “Battlezone” and “UXB”. Simply because playing an entire album was a little hard for anyone to swallow. But when you get to a birthday like the 40th, that’s a big deal.
Next year will be the 40th anniversary of their album *All For One*, in which Raven will perform it in full in the UK from March.

Raven’s lineup is considered a major inspiration for the development of the thrash and speed metal genres and had a huge influence on Metallica. Raven definitely deserves credit where credit is due. “We were one of the groups, but it certainly wasn’t us alone,” admits John. “We just came up with the concept of accelerating everything and putting some cool parts into it. When we were kids and played in clubs, we did half originals and half covers. It was still the most aggressive and fastest stuff, and we would speed it up and make it even more. And we created a kind of Drink of female dogs taking ideas from many bands and distilling them into a unique sound that is uniquely ours.

Raven has her new album already recorded and in the bag, awaiting final guitar tones and final mixing, with a tentative release date of May 2023. In the meantime, the Raven touring machine will keep rolling. At nearly 50 years as a band, Raven’s legacy is firmly established and they won’t be retiring anytime soon. “In everything we’ve done, it shows that tenacity and hard work will get you going and get you where you’re going,” says John. “No matter what circumstances or obstacles (are in your way); we have always succeeded in overcoming them and moving things forward. Being here for 50 years is humbling, and there aren’t many bands that have lasted that long. And we know that gives us momentum, it gives us motivation, and it gives us the responsibility to go out there and kick ass like maniacs at every possible opportunity. What we are happy to do.

—Kelley Simms

Raven appears at Reggie’s on October 11.

Key words: featured, John Gallagher, Mark Gallagher, Mike Heller, New Wave Of British Heavy Metal, famous bands from Newcastle, Raven, Raven at Reggies Chicago

Category: Featured, Stage Buzz