Sweden’s TORCH delivers the goods with the recklessness of Raven, the power of Priest and the attitude of Accept. Unfortunately they never achieved the success of any of those bands, but that doesn’t mean they didn’t leave a mark.
For 1984 this would have been considered quite heavy. It wasn’t at the level of the Thrash movement that was coming up around the same down, but it was noisy, obnoxious and thunderous.
Frontman Dan Dark seemed to have a certain Punk style, in the same way Paul Di’Anno of Iron Maiden had. Both guys were more about style and their aggressive delivery than they were about always being right on key and posing.
“Electrikiss” was down and dirty with pretty much no redeeming quality whatsoever, and that why it’s “charming” in a way. The lyrics are rather absurd, but Dark delivers them with such confidence and emphasis it seems perfectly normal.
They had a song called ‘Thunderstruck” before AC/DC did 6 years later. TORCH’S version brought down the thunder, but the quality of the entire record really makes the album difficult to enjoy at a high level, except for nostalgic reasons.
What’s suspicious is the song “When The Going Gets Tough”. A year later a song with the same name showed up on the RAVEN album “Stay Hard”. They have different lyrics but the chorus turned out to be VERY similar. I couldn’t confirm there was any connection between the songs, but it certainly got my attention.
In conclusion this TORCH album suffers from bad production, mediocre musicianship and bad lyrics. But for some reason I can’t help but enjoy the crap out of this album. Perhaps I know how badly it will (and did) piss off music critics. I would have LOVED to have seen them play these songs live as they were custom made to be played at maximum volume.