Axe - Five

Axe – Five

87 / 100

After a nearly twelve year layoff, Bobby Barth rebooted Axe back into life, ‘Five’ was the album to restart the engines, now signed to German label MTM Music, Axe sounded better than ever in my opinion.

Written by: gdmonline

SERIAL: 199617
YEAR: 1996
CD REISSUE: Discogs Reissue List

LINEUP: Bobby Barth – guitars, lead and backing vocals * Edgar Riley Jr – keyboards, backing vocals * Bob Harris – vocals * Teddy Mueller – drums * Blake Eberhard – bass

TRACK LISTING: 01 Intro * 02 Magic In Your Eyes * 03 Heroes And Legends * 04 Sting Of The Rain * 05 Life In The Furnace * 06 Burn Me Once Burn Me Twice * 07 Where There’s Smoke There’s Fire * 08 Holding On To The Night * 09 Anyplace On This Highway Is Home * 10 Battles



As read elsewhere through our Axe articles, this much loved band disappeared after 1983’s ‘Nemesis’ LP. Band leader Bobby Barth having escaped a fatal car crash in 1984 which took the life of guitarist Mike Osborne. He later resurfaced with southern rockers Blackfoot, plus he released a solo album ‘Two Hearts One Beat’ in 1986.

But for all intents Axe was dead and buried. It wasn’t until the mid 90’s that Barth resurrected the band, with new members Bob Harris on lead vocals and Blake Eberhard on bass. Between 1983 and 1996, Barth had travelled and lived all over the U.S, including a stint in Australia working with Rose Tattoo‘s Angry Anderson during his solo phase.

The Songs

By the mid 90’s, Barth had resettled in Colorado where he had studio and retail business interests. Encouraged to reboot Axe back into life, ‘Five’ was the album to restart the engines. Signed to German label MTM Music, Axe sounded better than ever in my opinion. There are a couple of geunine Axe classics here. ‘Heroes And Legends’ along with the epic ‘Sting Of The Rain’ are two standouts.

Talking of epics, ‘Battles’ (from the 1979 debut) is given new life, and along with punchy hard rockers like ‘Magic In Your Eyes’ and ‘Where There’s Smoke There’s Fire’, Axe are back is if it’s 1984 all over again. There’s a couple of slower mid-tempo moments too. ‘Life In The Furnace’ and ‘Holding On To The Night’ show Axe don’t lack for anything when the speed is not on.

In Summary

First released in Europe by MTM Music in 1996, the Japanese jumped into the picture with a re-release the following year via Zero Corporation. Axe continued to release new music right up unto 2012, with their next release being a live CD that year. Grabbing either version of ‘V’ should be compulsory, trying to find a current copy could be an issue though, as both are out of print.

Axe on Video

Heroes And Legends

Heroes and Legends

Sting Of The Rain
Sting of the Rain

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