Surprise – Shine On

Surprise
Shine On
1987 (no label)
Giessen, Germany

Uwe Bott – Acoustic and e-drums
Wolfgang Mattes – Bass guitar
Manfred Herr – E-guitar
Thomas Pottek – E-guitar, vocals, keyboards on “King Alcohol”
Matthias Damm – Keyboards, vocals

Side 1:

  1. Well Fixed Man
  2. Ruhelos
  3. Time is Near
  4. Who am I?
  5. Gewaltherrschaft
  6. Horrorskop
  7. Try to Believe

Side 2:

  1. King Alcohol
  2. Lett Me Burn
  3. Shine On
  4. Machtkampf

This is not the same band from Australia that started off as Surprise Surprise and then ended up releasing a few CDs on Refuge Records. This is a German band that is keyboard rock that sound closer to a slightly lighter version of “Dancing on the Head of the Serpent” by Jerusalem for the whole tape. They are very 80s-influenced – just listen to an 80s night on a classic rock station and you will get a good idea for the sounds on this demo (although songs like “Horrorskop” have some muscle to them… until the saxophone solo pulls it back to the 80s). This demo was recorded live, although most chatter and clapping between the songs has been edited out (sometimes rather abruptly in mid-word). Lyrics seem to go back and forth between German and English. Not a bad demo, and definitely very 80-ish, but it might just be too middle of the road for some. Because of that, some of the songs sound similar-ish.