A Metal Blast from the Past (MVD)
by Mike Delano
Contrary to what the fawning narrator of this concert/documentary would have you believe, Accept isn’t the greatest band of all time. But despite their (many) flaws, their ability as a live band was never questioned, and the lazily-titled Metal Blast from the Past DVD does a good job of capturing Accept’s power as performers during their peak.
Recorded in Osaka in 1985, presumably on the Metal Heart tour, the set list pulls generously from the German band’s early ’80s golden years that produced their best albums: Restless and Wild and Balls to the Wall. Markedly different from the Accept before and after, this was the fleeting period when they wrote Priest-worthy metal anthems with enough humor and attitude to elevate them from the scores of other clones.
There are also a few picks from the endearingly goofy Metal Heart album, including the commendably earnest title track and the superbly titled “Screaming for a Love-Bite.” The band is in fine form throughout, especially singer Udo Dirkschneider, whose impeccable outfits (sleeveless fatigues or sleeveless leather vest with embroidered middle finger?) and Bon Scott-like wail gives Accept most of their charm. The sound quality is also great, almost too great, and clean enough to raise eyebrows along the lines of Kiss’ claim that their Alive albums were “as live as they need to be.”
As a concert DVD, Metal Blast from the Past has its problems, since the Osaka set is interspersed with a bland, horribly narrated history of the band and random video clips. The creators try to make up for the lack of an uninterrupted concert set with some disparate additional live footage from 1993 and a lyrics and photo archive, but the DVD interface for the archives is so cumbersome as to be almost useless. Maybe this serviceable but flawed release will drum up some interest in creating a truly comprehensive Accept anthology, or at least a streamlined concert disc.