TYGERS OF PAN TANG: Spellbound LP Classic 1981 N.W.O.B.H.M s
TYGERS OF PAN TANG [CLASSIC HEAVY METAL]
Tygers of Pan Tang are a heavy metal band, formed in 1978 in England. They are a notable band of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal movement. The band is named after an elite group of chaos-worshiping warriors, called the Tigers of Pan Tang, in Michael Moorcocks Elric stories.
By the time this album was released, John Sykes (formerly of Streetfighter, later in Badlands, Thin Lizzy, Whitesnake, and Blue Murder) was added as second guitarist. Jess Cox then had a falling out with the others and quit, to be replaced by Persian Risk vocalist Jon Deverill. This lineup released Spellbound in 1981.
Spellbound is the second album by NWOBHM band Tygers of Pan Tang, produced in 1981 on MCA. “Gangland” has been covered by German thrash metal band Kreator in 1987 on their “Behind the Mirror” single.
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“Silver and Gold”
“The Story So Far”
“Don’t Stop By”
Spellbound represented an amazing evolution for the Tygers of Pan Tang, especially considering that it was released a mere six months after their debut. Simply put, the addition of versatile new vocalist Jon Deverill and brilliant guitarist John Sykes (yes — that John Sykes) helped improve the Tygers’ musicianship and songwriting abilities to no end, allowing producer Chris Tsangarides to exact an infinitely superior (if not as innocently charming) performance of the band from a technical perspective. With a muscular brand of metal lying somewhere between Def Leppard and Saxon, the revitalized group had all of their bases covered and only MCA (frequently referred to as the “Musical Cemetery of America” in those days) could possibly squander the potential of memorable numbers like “Gangland,” “Take It,” and the especially hook-laden “The Story So Far.” Other highlights include “Mirror,” one of the bands best power ballads, and “Don’t Stop By,” where Sykes takes the first great solo of his career, showcasing both the stunning technical mastery and fluid musicality which would become his trademarks.
Spellbound still ranks as one of the more consistent and impressive early albums of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, and should satisfy all first-time customers.
Jon Deverill – Vocals
Robb Weir – Guitar
John Sykes – Guitar
Richard “Rocky” Laws – Bass
Brian Dick – Drums
Spellbound was Tygers Of Pan Tangs second album, and in my opinion a significant improvement over their rather adolescent debut. Lineup changes seemed to have contributed greatly to this progression, as Tygers replaced their singer with Jon Deverill, a very capable vocalist, and also added guitarist John Sykes to their ranks. To me this is the quintessential Tygers album, and as such one of the best NWOBHM offerings out there. Spellbound is a consistent effort, full of hook-laden tunes with enough balls to satiate your metal jones. My personal favorite track is the ultra-catchy Hellbound.