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Monday, August 1, 2011

NEWS: Jag Panzer (US) disbands (1981-2011)

Sadly it's not long back since we saw german heavy metallers Running Wild - one of my favourite bands - to disband and leave the heavy metal scene. Just when I had reviewed Jag Panzer's best and worst albums in my opinion, and stated ironically they had been releasing albums regularly ever since reforming in 1993 untill today I heard they have disbanded and are calling it quits.

(Early Jag Panzer lineup - most likely around '84 Ample Destruction era)

Jag Panzer were american traditional heavy metal band formed at 1981 (actually they were formed under name Tyrant as early as 1978 - however after legal issues with the name they changed it at '81 to what what we know today as Jag Panzer). Their style had alot of melodic edge on riffs and most albums were done with great vocalist Harry Conklin (also known from Titan Force and Satan's Host) and guitarists Mark Briody & Joey Tafolla/Chris Broderick. Their earliest stuff was a bit rougher and aggressive traditional heavy metal than what their later releases represent, where the sound is a bit softer and melodic yet enjoyable. Dissident alliance in between these styles made exception to the rule with touch of groove laden metal - modern metal influenced sound and almost metalcore vocals. This phase lasted only one album and is considered often as "a stain in otherwise good discography of the band".

(Ample Destruction (1984) remains highly regarded record untill today)

Jag Panzer for old school heavy metal fan was mostly known of their great debut Ample Destruction (1984) and rather disasterous (at least in eyes of many original fans) Dissident Alliance (1994). After the last mentioned album they managed to release quite a few decently good albums - though never reaching Ample Destructions glory again - still putting out quality heavy metal. If you manage to find original pressing of Ample Destruction as LP, well it's worth of alot of money today.

(The Scourge of The Light - lineup at 2011)

The journey however has now come to end at July 2011: "We are proud of every album we released and the support we've received from the heavy metal community. We've played so many places around the world and enjoyed every minute of it but the time has come where we just cannot move forward as a band." Says one of the former band members guitarist Mark Briody.

"Christian did an amazing job on 'The Scourge Of The Light' and it was a pleasure working with him. We wished Christian well but kept this quiet until we found a replacement". Continues Briody.

Drummer Rikard Stjernquist says, "Several guitar players applied for the job. It was a pleasant surprise to see so many young guitarists with advanced chops. One player, 19-year-old Jake Dreyer, submitted videos of him nailing solos from both Chris Broderick and Christian Lasegue. We were ready to welcome Jake into the band, but, unfortunately, that will not happen. There is no doubt in any of our minds that Jake will go on to be a household name in his own right."

Bassist John Tetley adds a final line: "In closing, we’d like to send out a huge heartfelt THANK YOU to metal fans throughout the world. You all rule!"

(Their last album The Scourge Of The Light (2011))

Released on February 28 of 2011 - Scourge of The Light will remain the last release of Jag Panzer setting their record at nine full lenghts, one DVD, three singles, one EP and five demos between the years 1981-2011. Harry Conklin currently handles vocal duties for a black/thrash metal band called Satan's Host. A full discography of Jag Panzer can be seen below:

Death RowSingle1983
Ample Destruction Full-length 1984
Demo 1985Demo1985
Demo 1986Demo 1986
Shadow ThiefDemo1986
Dissident AllianceDemo1993
Dissident AllianceFull-length1994
Jeffrey Behind the Gate Single1994
The ReturnDemo1996
The Fourth JudgementFull-length 1997
The Age of MasteryFull-length 1998
Thane to the Throne Full-length 2000
Mechanized WarfareFull-length 2001
The Era of Kings and ConflictDVD 2002
Decade of the Nail-Spiked Bat Compilation2003
Chain of CommandFull-length 2004
Casting the StonesFull-length 2004
The Wreck of the Edmund FitzgeraldSingle 2005
The Scourge of the LightFull-length 2011

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