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Oz: Burning Leather
Oz Burning Leather

Oz: Burning Leather

Heavy Metal (NWOBHM)

If you recall Oz, one of Finland's early contributions to the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, from back in the day, then treat yourself to a six-pack of your favorite brew. These guys slipped under my radar. Now after 20 years, the band has reunited to resurrect their version of classic heavy metal. But, after listening to their comeback album, Burning Leather, I'm wondering if Oz should have stayed in retirement. Alright, casting my cynicism aside as it's not all that bad, and, after all, I love this classic metal sound.

Oz Band Photo

Above, Oz: up to their asses in flames, burning leather indeed.

To refresh our collective memories, not so lucent since 1983 from the cheap beer in the arena parking lots, Oz offers re-recordings of two of their favorites. ONe is the metal rocker Fire in the Brain, from the popular album of the same name. Also, getting a fresh retake is the anti-Christian Turn the Cross Upside Down, where Oz encourages their followers to 'burn the churches to the ground.' No this is not Scandi black metal, but it is repulsive.

The rest of the album consists of new material revisiting that classic Eighties heavy metal sound. There's a metal anthem with Enter Stadium; a mandatory ode to metal in Total Metal; a dash of spunky speed in Third Warning; and, heavier plodding metal in Seasons in the Darkness.

Essentially, Burning Leather is rudimentary, but rarely novel, traditional metal; add the period piece album artwork, and your time warp is made complete. Yet, in the end, OZ still knows their style and master it quite well. Why reinvent the wheel when you're still rolling with it?

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In Short

Finland's classic metallers OZ reunite after 20 years and deliver Burning Leather, pure NWOBHM-style metal. Find you leather and denim: Oz will meet you in the heavy metal parking lot.

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