Hard Rock / Proto-Metal / Non-Metal • Germany
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British progressive heavy rock bands like Deep Purple, Black Sabbath, Uriah Keep and Led Zeppelin inspired many young bands in Germany. The Germans usually preferred to use English lyrics, and several bands, like Blackwater Park, 2066 & Then and Epitaph, had British vocalists!

Epitaph were founded in Dortmund in 1969. The first sessions for their debut album, released 1971 on Polydor, were recorded in an Essex studio in England. For reasons unknown, it was however finished in Windrose Studios, Hamburg, where a fourth member was added to the group: Klaus Walz.

In 1972, Epitaph recorded their second album Stop, Look And Listen in Audio Tonstudio, Berlin. This album also contained five tracks, stylistically similar to their first offering. Both albums are recommended for fans of the heavy progressive genre.

In early 1973, Epitaph released two non-LP singles on the Polydor subsidiary Zebra: "Autumn '71" coupled with "Are You Ready" (2047 003) and
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EPITAPH Discography

EPITAPH albums / top albums

EPITAPH Epitaph album cover 3.50 | 4 ratings
Proto-Metal 1971
EPITAPH Stop, Look, Listen album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
Stop, Look, Listen
Proto-Metal 1972
EPITAPH Outside The Law album cover 2.75 | 2 ratings
Outside The Law
Hard Rock 1974
EPITAPH Return To Reality album cover 4.25 | 2 ratings
Return To Reality
Hard Rock 1978
EPITAPH See You In Alaska album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
See You In Alaska
Non-Metal 1980
EPITAPH Danger Man album cover 5.00 | 1 ratings
Danger Man
Hard Rock 1982
EPITAPH Remember The Daze album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Remember The Daze
Hard Rock 2007
EPITAPH Dancing With Ghosts album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Dancing With Ghosts
Hard Rock 2009
EPITAPH Fire From the Soul album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Fire From the Soul
Hard Rock 2016

EPITAPH EPs & splits

EPITAPH live albums

EPITAPH Live album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Hard Rock 1981
EPITAPH Live - The 21st. Century Tour album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live - The 21st. Century Tour
Hard Rock 2000
EPITAPH Ressurection album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Hard Rock 2004
EPITAPH Rockpalast: Krautrock Legends Vol. I album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Rockpalast: Krautrock Legends Vol. I
Hard Rock 2011

EPITAPH demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

EPITAPH re-issues & compilations

EPITAPH Handicap album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Proto-Metal 1979
EPITAPH Handicap Vol. II album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Handicap Vol. II
Proto-Metal 1980

EPITAPH singles (4)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
London Town Girl / Visions
Proto-Metal 1971
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Autumn '71 / Are You Ready
Hard Rock 1973
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
We Love You Alice / Paradice For Sale
Hard Rock 1973
.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Set Your Spirit Free / Summer Sky
Hard Rock 1979

EPITAPH movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Krautrock Legends Vol. 1
Proto-Metal 2011



Album · 1971 · Proto-Metal
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Three and a half stars for the heavy metal content, but actually I quite like this album. Since I turned 50 early this year, I decided to check out albums in my collection that were released the year I was born, and then I went ahead and ordered about a dozen more. Epitaph was a band that showed up as an early seventies heavy rock, hard rock outfit, but when I listened to samples on YouTube, I wasn't convinced that I needed to add their albums to my collection. Then I got this album and I'll say that I am pleasantly surprised!

Nearly every band that played heavy rock or fell in with the first wave of heavy metal - now respectfully known as proto-metal - was not consistently heavy and intense. Most bands had one or two killer heavy tracks, a couple more that included heavy parts, and then the rest of the songs would be boogie rock, blues rock, an acoustic ballad, a folky number, and maybe something not so heavy but possibly proggy. This album isn't one of the few exceptions. However, it thankfully avoids some of the cliches that can frequently heard on American or British releases.

The opening track "Moving to the Country" features a grooving riff with slightly distorted guitars that sounds like early Eloy. It soon changes into a swinging bluesy number similar to early Wishbone Ash. However, at 3:15 there's a guitar solo that sounds suspiciously like finger tapping or at least a sequence of notes that sound similar to a tapped solo. That perked up my ears. The rest of the track revisits some of the more heavy rock sound that kicked off the song.

"Visions" is a slow track with strings or Mellotron that sounds a bit like "In the Court of the Crimson King" or a Moody Blues-inspired song. "Hopelessly" carries over from the hippy melodies of 69/70 before changing into a bass-grooving, upbeat jazz-tinged rocker like some early Uriah Heep. Then there's "Little Maggie" which a fun, southern rock-ish, track that gets rocking like Mountain or early Grand Funk Railroad. This one puts a smile on my face once the guitar solo starts carrying on.

"Early Morning" is the epic track that appears on many albums of the early seventies and it is in this track where the early heavy metal atmosphere rises through the rock. It's a slow number at first that builds the tension a little before releasing some intense drumming and guitar work. After the 8-minute mark we're into that sweet heavy rock of the 1969-72 era.

The original album is over here but the four CD bonus tracks are really worth mentioning because aside from the single version of "Visions" each of the tracks feature more of that scratchy wah-wah's guitar, hard-hammered riffs and intense drumming. "I'm Trying" once again brings to mind Wishbone Ash while "Changing World" actually nears Black Sabbath territory with some hard and heavy chords in one part while otherwise just being a showcase for speedy guitar rock with some heavy bass lines and frenetic drumming. This track is the best pick for an example of early seventies heavy rock.

Epitaph's debut is not going to make it to the top ten heavy albums of 1971 but it has a decent set of varying styles of guitar rock tracks which include some of those early heavy examples that I love to seek out. Overall, it's a pretty cool album and one that will get repeat listens simply because I enjoy listening to it.

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