The New Wave of British Heavy Metal’s legacy is seemingly eternal. It obviously spawned (and inspired) the biggest bands in metal, but it also continues to be a source of inspiration to generation after generation. What’s, however, a curious phenomenon in 2023 is the number of bands that want to sound exactly like an obscure NWOBHM single or demo, low production values and all. Count German newcomers Firmament among those worshipping the deep recesses of the movement (both musically and visually). Formed by former members of Tension, this Leipzig quintet—Stefan Deutsch (bass), Jonas Zeidler (drums), Tom Michalik (guitars), Philipp Meyer (guitars), Maik Huber (vocals)—straddles the line between the hard rock ’70s and the heavy metal ’80s where effort, energy and enthusiasm were just as important as good musical chops.
Firmament wouldn’t have been A-listers in the NWOBHM, but in 2023 they sound like one of those scads of second- and third-tier bands that gave the movement depth and soul. Their dedication to this sound and style is admirable and, lest we seem to be damning them with faint praise, they pull it off note perfect. We Don’t Rise, We Just Fall sounds utterly authentic.
Firmament’s debut is set for release March 24 on vinyl, CD and cassette via Dying Victims Productions. You can preorder it here.
Here’s what the band had to say about their debut effort:
“What started with the aim to evolve further musically, into a direction that’s not exclusively limited to heavy metal only, but still staying true to our roots and blending in our own twist in the songwriting, is what you can listen to now. We Don’t Rise, We Just Fall is a wild ride through various emotions, styles and we managed to capture the spontaneousness of the songwriting process and motivation that we had after the founding of the band. The songs feature lots of twin guitar work, melodic bass lines, melancholic vocals and a driven and old-fashioned way of drumming. Grab a drink, turn up the volume and enjoy the journey!”