Solitude – Reach For The Sky

Japanese metallers Solitude are Toru Nishida (bass), Akira Sugiuchi (vocals), Takamasa “MAD” Ohuchi (drums) and Shingo Ida (guitars). This is Solitude’s third album following 2009’s Brave The Storm and 2001’s Virtual Image (all released in Japan on the splendidly named Spiritual Beast label).

Reach For the Sky was mixed by Magnus Sedenberg who previously worked with the Lemmy-approved Crucified Barbara.

I must compliment Solitude on the excellent cover artwork by Velio Josto, real old-school in the very best way, just like Solitude’s music.

Solitude are very much influenced by the great metal of the 80s, especially the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, in particular Tank, Venom, Jaguar, Sweet Savage, Saxon, Iron Maiden and Diamond Head. Other influences are Motorhead, Judas Priest, and I can definitely hear Armored Saint in there.

The songs are first class as is the musicianship, but it’s the love of the music that really makes this a special album. In a world where music has to constantly be ‘extreme’, it’s great to hear an album with everything done just right for the right reasons. This is very much the kind of album Fenriz loves and no higher compliment can it be paid.

(Test Your Metal Records)

Steve Earles is author and co-author of numerous projects, including To End All Wars: The WWI Graphic Anthology, available summer 2014 (

Read more about...