Running Wild - Rapid Foray

Running Wild - Rapid Foray

(CD, Steamhammer/SPV, 2016)

No matter what will happen, RUNNING WILD will always have a special place in my heart contrary to my complaints about what Captain Rolf was doing around the post “The Rivalry” era. You see, spoiling the fans is something inevitable after releasing back-to-back killer albums that have written entire chapters in the big book of Heavy Metal. Sure, “Resilient” was not good enough to make us fly the Jolly Roger high again but I think “Rapid Foray” will definitely do the trick, although you should be following the motto 'once a Pirate, always a Pirate' and have the black and white flag high on its mast, no matter what.

Ok, there is no intro opening the album but once you hear the RUNNING WILD trademark rhythm guitars of “Black Skies, Red Flag”, you will get shivers down your spine and get ready for boarding... Once the initial excitement has faded away, you realize two things: a) the drums sound as they should and b) there is some effect on Rolf's voice that slightly messes the overall very good rate of this album opener. The guitar leads and the solo that follows will make your eyes a little bit watery, especially if you’ve missed what this great band has been serving us from the mid-'80s. And the good stuff continues with “Warmongers” (the oh yeah scream is another RUNNING WILD trademark) where the bass takes one step forward in the mix, underlining the way better production of this album as compared to the band's last two. Fill your glass with beer (or grog if you prefer) during the mood-lifting riffs of the album’s title track with the have-to-sing-along bridge/chorus and then prepare for battle with the awesome “Black Bart” which is so good that will wake up some “Port Royal” memories. Careful because I am not saying that this is a nostalgia album with a band copying itself but I think the lineup was inspired but the RUNNING WILD history and put together an album that can stand on the same shelf with the rest of the masterpieces without blushing (much). Yeah, the chugging rhythm of “Hellestrified” with Rolf’s awesome singing (no effect on sight) and the whispering evil-sounding part along with the fast “Blood Moon Rising” with the story-telling lyrics are just a couple of the strongest moments of this RUNNING WILD-comeback. For the chanting-along-riffs lovers, “Into The West” is for you, so better be ready for some serious oooohs following the “Billy The Kid” kind of way that will wake more great memories with the "Death Or Glory" lyric lines.

The album closes after spending eleven minutes delivering the epic guitar leads of the story-telling “Last Of The Mohicans” and I am sure you get goosebumps the moment the distorted guitar starts delivering the fists-in-the-air riff in a “Black Wings Of Death” way. Oh man, how much I've missed epic songs like this one, so yes, I will get cheesy and state Rock N’ Rolf is back. The break with the Indian ritual-chanting and the galloping guitars is amazing with an arsenal of riff for your listening pleasure.

Sure, being a long-time RUNNING WILD fan may have clouded my judgement about “Rapid Foray” but I don’t really care since the album has all the things I have missed getting from Rolf’s guitar playing and music writing hands, so I will embrace the moment and scream on top of my lungs "under Jolly Roger" with the outmost pride. Care to join me?





01. Black Skies, Red Flag
02. Warmongers
03. Stick To Your Guns
04. Rapid Foray
05. By The Blood In Your Heart
06. The Depth Of The Sea - Nautilus
07. Black Bart
08. Hellestrified
09. Blood Moon Rising
10. Into The West
11. Last Of The Mohicans


Rock N’ Rolf - Vocals, Guitar
Peter Jordan - Guitar
Ole Hempelmann - Bass
Michael Wolpers - Drums