32 Years Ago: RUNNING WILD release Gates to Purgatory

This summer should see the release of the band’s debut album. All I can say is once that record is out, by all means pick it up. It will undoubtedly be one of the top metal albums of 1984.

And Bob Muldowney was right on in the July 1984 issue (XXVI) of his Kick Ass zine! RUNNING WILD released Gates to Purgatory on this day in 1984!

They were already making a name in the underground with the Rock from Hell – German Metal Attack split in 1983 featuring an early version of “Adrian S.O.S.” and Death Metal split a couple of months earlier (Oct 1984) with HELLHAMMER, HELLOWEEN and DARK AVENGER.

Paint in subways, paint in buses
With your Edding big black pentagrams
Black metal graffitis are thrown against the wall,
Crucifixes are inversed
Pictures are signed by the Triple Six
Black metal art is shocking law ‘n’ order man!

For me, an all time classic from West Germany, a musical avalanche. Lyrically the Adversary archetype used to fight against religious and state corruption (“Son of Satan’s coming, to free all the slaves”).

More from Kick Ass, describing the RW sound (just before the release of the album):

From commercial metal (Scorpions, Accept, Bullet) to hardcore power metal (Sodom), they’ve got something for everyone, and that includes straight ahead powerful heavy metal, in the form of Running Wild.
Sporting a Satanist image, Running Wild is not a power metal or death metal band. They music is basically up-tempo and fast-paced heavy metal, heavy guitar riffing (sometimes reminiscent of heavier Priest a la “Stained Class” and “Hell Bent For Leather”). The vocals are not gut-level like Sir Cronos, but they are rough, and the lead guitar work is also impressive.


27 Years Ago: RUNNING WILD live in Düsseldorf (Full Concert Pro Video)

Just over a year earlier RUNNING WILD released Port Royal. The “Welcome To Port Royal” tour ended in Düsseldorf on this day in 1989. The concert was filmed and released by Noise in June 1990. By then Death or Glory had been out several months so I assume the VHS was named Death or Glory Tour – Live for that reason. The Death of Glory tour began properly in January 1990 with support from RAGE, S.D.I. and Random.

28 Years Ago: RUNNING WILD release Port Royal (It’s time for the red flag, no remorse!)

RUNNING WILD released their fourth album on this day in 1988. Many memorable songs, this was where they really took up the piracy theme:

It was a very weird thing. We started that stuff with the Under Jolly Roger album, and everything started with the song “Under Jolly Roger.” At that time we were looking for a title for the whole record, and I said that was a great title for the record so let’s do it. So we did, and then we had to do the cover like that, because it fits the song. So we did it, and so we said let’s do the stage clothing like that. So we did it, and then we said let’s do the set like that , and when we looked back we said, “Oh, wow, we look like pirates!” So it just came; we didn’t plan it. And then at the times we were rehearsing for the Port Royal album, I really became interested in reading books about that. That is why the titles “Port Royal” and “Calico Jack.” are like that. We thought it was kind of the whole thing that RUNNING WILD stands for, or which stands for RUNNING WILD. It just came.
May 1996 interview

Though the rockers of the underground still scrawl some Edding pentagrams on tracks like Into the Arena:

Millions of people
Killed for the cross
By relentless religion – disgusting

The “Welcome to Port Royal” tour took place through January of 1989 across Germany and then sporadically during the rest of the year into Spain, Greece and England. ANGEL DUST were the support band for all dates.

Rolf has in the past considered this album the end of the first period in RUNNING WILD history:

Putting the albums in a rough frame, I would say there have been three periods in the development, the first starting with Gates To Purgatory and ending with Port Royal, the second from Death Or Glory to Pile Of Skulls and the third from Black Hand Inn to where we are now. Whereas each period was based on the respective previous one.
February 2000 Interview