SEVERED HEAD, Heavy Metal / Killing the Kids (1983, Plastic Canvas)

The skull:
This is easily one of the finest skulls in the BDSkullection. This skull kept its eyes, eyes that have lasers or some other kind of light ray scanning out into the void, the top of its head a spaghetti-like mess of patch cords both coiled and straight. Considering there are female band members, is it an intentional nod to Medusa and her head of snakes? The logo is simple but bleeding. Looks like we’re gonna have to strap ourselves in for a very heavy experience. But, nope, not really.

The music:
This 7″ single is the only official release from this short-lived U.K. band, coming in at the tail end of the NWOBHM surge. The Head features two female vocalists in their ranks, but the girls seem more like curbside appeal than crucial elements of the band’s sound, as they perform only background vocals. Girlfriends of a couple of the guys? At least give them tambourines, for shit’s sake. It’s fairly competent stuff, even something that might have landed a deal with a major label subsidiary in the late ’70s, but by 1983 this already sounds dated and not as dark or vicious as the best NWOBHM. The “good time heavy metal rock!” refrain in “Heavy Metal” is Helix-level retardation. The skull artwork is about 4,000 times better than the music, but in their defense, any band would have a hard time measuring the expectations set by the name/logo and brilliant cover art.
— Friar Wagner


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