The Big Thrill – Axxis

The Big Thrill was an album I bought way back in 1993 based solely on the recommendations of a friendly music store owner. And I have never regretted the purchase as it’s one of the strongest albums that I can remember listening to.

The band Axxis are based in Dortmund, Germany and for a while they outsold the Scorpions! The Big Thrill is probably their best album (based on other fans’ opinions – I’ve only heard the one album). So let’s take a look at why this is such a good album.

I’ve downloaded the album thru torrent and bang! Better World/Living In The Dark hits through my speakers like a hammer. It’s about the changing world and keeping an optimistic view on the changes. Against A Brick Wall starts with an Angus Youngish guitar riff and the thumping rhythm of bassist Markus Gfeller & Richard Michaelski’s drums hits you in the gut. Stay Don’t Leave Me is a love ballad which makes good use of Harry Oellers’s piano skills.

Every relationship between lovers is a little bit of love and war, right? The Germans agree and this uptempo number, Little War, is just about that. No Advice is an in your face, thumbing your nose at athourity and society. Another power ballad, Love Doesn’t Know Any Distance is melancholic and melodic. Probably the best song on the record, the ominous sounding Heaven’s Seventh Train, is mysterious and foreboding. I haven’t found any video for this track but if they had made one, it should be on a train, traveling at night through a snowy German forest.

Brother Moon is a call to the wild nature of humans, as is The Wolf. The Road To Never NeverLand is a war cry of the rock n’roll lifestyle that any rocker will enjoy. Nestlled amongst them is a mostly acoustic gem – Waterdrop! A guitar philosophical look at comparing a human and mankind to a waterdrop and the body of water on the Earth, it’s a beautiful masterpiece. The 11 songs are aided by the skillful & tasteful guitar chops of Walter Pietsch and the unique vocals of Bernhard Weiß.

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