Formed in 1981 in New York, BlackLace recorded a demo called On The
Attack with another drummer before obtaining a deal with the Belgian
label Mausoleum Records. The band harboured shades of Manowar, Hellion,
etc. and had an album co-produced by Ross The Boss of Manowar fame.
played shows on both sides of the Atlantic with Manowar, Twisted
Zebra and others. The band folded in 1987 with Mausoleum having bitten
the dust a couple of years earlier. Mausoleum re-released the bands'
albums on CD after the turn of the century.
The band members remained in contact, yet played in different acts over
the years. BlackLace reformed in July, 2004 with all four members
returning for another round. The band was in pre-production for a new
album in September, 2004.
BLACKLACE - UNLACED - MAUSOLEUM
Unlaced is the debut album of New York's Blacklace and a good album despite being a little patchy if taken song by song. March Of The Black Witch which kicks off the album is a two-minute long intro with an appropriate title given how the band is fronted by a female. On a side-note it should be worth mentioning that MaryAnn Scandiffio particularly resembles Joan Jett on the cover. Back on the musical front, Call Of The Wild is a pounding song with smashing dual-channel vocals. Damn Cheater is a catchy song and another of the album's stand-outs. MaryAnn gets some vocal assistance here from the three men around her. The chorus sounds like a refrain of 'damn cheetah' which, of course, is in fact 'damn cheater!' Runner In The Night is a heavy song, but the vocal phrasing is not the band's best. The album is mostly produced by Jeff Waxman, but the songs Devil In Disguise, On The Attack and Hots For You are produced by Manowar's Ross The Boss. This probably means that the album is the result of more than one recording session. Devil In Disguise has a noticeable bass guitar presence. Born To Raise Hell's intro is reminiscent of Mercyful Fate, although the song itself is a straight ahead hard rocker. This is another song where the lyrics sound particularly combative. Hots For You recreates the George Lynch guitar sound. The song is mid-paced and somehow commercial. Nightmares ends the album and would have been better without the howling. The song is, in fact, one of the band's weaker moments. Notwithstanding that, Unlaced is a good heavy metal album and a promising start for a band out of nowhere. - Ali "The Metallian"
BLACKLACE - GET IT WHILE IT'S HOT - MAUSOLEUM
The fact that Blacklace not only did not make it, but also did not go on to rule the musical universe proves beyond the shadow of a doubt that a- my taste in music is vastly superior to most others and b- there is no justice in the musical universe! Simply put, Get It While It's Hot is prime heavy metal.
Often compared to Warlock, for sharing a label, practicing pure heavy metal and having a woman on vocals, Blacklace's 1985 album is an example of what happens when urgency meets the metal hook. Blacklace features a potent axe attack, a crucially solid rhythm section and a heart-warming voice that will seep into your soul and lift your metal spirit.
The album's first song is I Like To Rock. Its line 'I am gonna draw the line/ Me and the boys are gonna rock...you tonight' sounds like a mission statement. Action Pact must have worked really well live. The song is self-referencing and has a Blackout-ish guitar sound going on at its end. Speed Of Sound is an adrenalin rush and is a tour-de-force performance. The guitars go nuts and the voice of MaryAnn Scandiffio is exhilarating. Somethin' Bad has a Van Halen riff at its end. One wonders whether it is there intentionally. The Right is a little different, although it comes with another great guitar attack in the mid-section. Mad Dog's Revenge is completely early MSG. One would love to know what the band had in mind given the title. Moreover, what is the sample at the song's end meant to represent? Shadow Of The Night is probably about Jack The Ripper. This song ends with a patented Dokken riff. Is the band doing this consciously? On Run For Your Life Scandiffio struts her superb voice once again. The song features a ripping lead that drips with class. The lyrics are an interesting twist on the usual love story. As if anticipating the next song, which is sung by bassist Anthony Fragnito, the male backing vocals take an expanded role on Run For Your Life. The Jig Is Up ends the album with a twist. MaryAnn sings back-up on the song. The main vocals are Anthony's. Ironically, some great backing vocals are recorded for this song by MaryAnn - in fact some of her best performance is right here.
This album does not have a single dud. In fact, Get It While It's Hot is as hot today as the day it was released. Get it! - Ali "The Metallian"