Future Triumph Meets Past Glory: A LOVEBITES NWOBHM Playlist

Photo Credit: Kitetsu Takamiya

On the effusive, soul-stirring new EP Glory, Glory, to the World Tokyo shredders LOVEBITES charge forward in a musical body that is modern and symphonic but powered by a heart and soul that radiates pure New Wave of British Heavy Metal fire.

To celebrate the release of this slab of new what’s next metal, Decibel reached out to LOVEBITES bassist Rosana Miho for a playlist — and we were not disappointed!

1. Iron Maiden

A band that represents the NWOBHM, and should be called the face of heavy metal. The band’s sound is one of a kind, with a punk-ish roughness in the good old British rock vein. The central figure, bassist Steve Harris, has been one of my biggest heroes since I started playing bass. From Iron Maiden, I learned the importance of the bass sound that resonates behind the guitar harmonies and that gives it character. My slightly trebly sounding fingerpicked bass style is nothing short of Maiden’s influence. In live
performances, I sometimes mimic Steve’s “machine gun bass” out of respect.

2. Tank

This is a manly band with a strong punk element in NWOBHM, with distorted vocals over aggressive blasting riffs, and a rugged and rough sound that can be likened to Motörhead. Of course I didn’t know them in real time myself, but their [Decibel Hall of Fame] debut album Filth Hounds Of Hades was well-received in Japan at the time. One of the reasons I like them so much is that they have evolved from their early punkish style to a more legitimate heavy metal band with twin guitars since their third album This Means War. The title track of their fourth album, Honour And Blood, is a great song that is aggressive yet sad, and contains the best of NWOBHM.

3. Grim Reaper

This is a traditional heavy metal band that is particularly melodic in the NWOBHM genre. It should be noted that the singer, Steve Grimmett, has a wonderful singing capability. He has a great command of the mid- to high-register — and his raspy singing shines through. Every song title is lined with words that metalheads love, and the chorus sings the song title in high spirits. I’ll never forget the feeling of unity with the audience when I spun the classic song “See you in Hell” at a DJ event. It made me realize that I wanted to create a song that could be sung in chorus with the audience just like theirs. The essence of this is slightly captured in “Journey to the Otherside” by LOVEBITES.

Photo Credit: Kitetsu Takamiya

4. Chariot

Chariot debuted in the late NWOBHM era, and their second album, Burning Ambition, released in 1986, is a masterpiece. It is full of simple, rough, but straightforward and beautiful melancholy riffs, and it is a concentrate of the greatness of British metal. The first song, “Screams of the Night,” is a must listen for all metalheads. The bass guitar obbligato and the unison phrases between the bass and guitar are wonderful. I can’t help but be attracted to this song, which must have been borne out of respect for the older NWOBHM bands as they debuted later in their career.

5. Tygers of Pan Tang

The guitar hero of the NWOBHM, John Sykes, shines in this young band. The second album Spellbound is the best, but the third and fourth albums are also great. The fourth album after the departure of John Sykes is a bit poppier, but it is still a good British hard rock album that you can enjoy. I like bands that have a wide range of songs like them, and I find it a pleasure to be a part of LOVEBITES’ similar ability to play different types of songs.