"Look Out for the Night" (Retrospect; 1985/2006)

Reviewed by Metal Mark

Sometimes you find a gem that, for one reason or another, went overlooked. This album doesn't totally fall into that category yet there is something here that makes it worthwhile. 

Ohio?s Axtion originally released this album in 1985, but Retrospect records have now released it for the first time on CD. Describing Axtion is a bit tough because they don't exactly have one cohesive sound. There's a song here that sounds like Journey without the keyboards ... but then again there is another that sounds a little like early 80s Judas Priest. Overall, the heaviness level is somewhere in the middle of those two. At times, "Look Out for the Night" sounds a bit like Rough Cutt and a little like Malice yet with far more hooks. 

Guitarist Darren Lazzeri shreds with ease on his solos and the music is pretty solid throughout. Now the downside and the reality check: I believe that these guys later relocated to LA but never really got anywhere. The main problem I see with them is vocalist Randy Amos. He is okay on the slower songs -- maybe like a slightly less impressive Paul Di?Anno; but his lack of range is all too clear on the mid-tempo songs. What's worse is that he tries to make up for his lack of range by stretching lines out and this just makes him sound like an amateur. 

The other problem isn't as bad and it's just that the album was made in 1985 yet almost half songs have more of an early 80s sound. That doesn't matter much to me, but that may have been something that record labels noticed at the time. 

"Look Out for the Night" may not be a great overlooked gem, but it's a good, solid, catchy metal album and Axtion had some real potential. 

Favorite tracks include the title track, ?Road Runnin'? and ?Spread the Axtion.?

Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright ? 2007 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 20 May 2024 13:38:51 -0400.