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Grave Digger


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Grave Digger is a German band formed by Chris Boltendahl (vocals), Peter Masson (guitar), Willi Lackmann (bass guitar), and Albert Eckardt (drums) in 1980 in Gladbeck, a small town in Germany. Their songs often display a and ethos, with lyrics reflecting battle, destruction, and sorcery. The group’s debut album, 1984’s ‘Heavy Metal Breakdown’, produced some undying classics for their such as the Grave Digger anthem “Heavy Metal Breakdown” and the powerful Yesterday”.

After their second studio album, 1985’s ‘Witch Hunter’, was completed, Eckardt left the band and was replaced by musician C.F. Brank. Though not quite breaking through commercially as had been hoped, the group’s first two albums achieved critical acclaim and were warmly received by legions of fans. Allmusic’s Pemberton Roach spoke for many when he remarked that the band “doesn’t disappoint” since the guys can hammer “home one huge speed metal riff after another”, meaning that Grave Digger “have enough chops and energy to silence any naysayers”.

After the third studio album, 1986’s ‘War Games’, the group’s members found themselves at a crossroads. Though they had many fans and had toured successfully, guitarist Peter Masson departed from the band, his place to be taken by Uwe Lulis. In addition, the band changed their name from “Grave Digger” to “Digger” as they aimed for a more mainstream-minded approach. They experimented with a sound more reminiscent of and , their style becoming akin to artists such as Bon Jovi and Van Halen.


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  • MrChimney

    Grandmaster Uwe joins Accept!

    1 Aug 8:19pm Reply
  • wholelottay

    Amazing <3

    5 Jul 10:49pm Reply
  • promisedeyes

    "Pendragon" and "Excalibur" are a one-two punch of pure metal power!

    16 May 9:06am Reply
  • M-Morbid


    1 May 9:59am Reply
  • Raku92

    ukraine don't exist

    23 Apr 11:52am Reply
  • Remarque1956

    Please, come to Ukraine with the concert.

    11 Apr 10:49pm Reply
  • Lionheartattack

    Aaaaand the Middle Ages Trilogy, that is, the albums Tunes of War, Knights of the Cross, and Excalibur! Rarely does a metal band have such a five-straight of near perfect albums, like Digger has in their 90s releases! :)

    19 Feb 10:00pm Reply
  • MrChimney

    Oniren: If Return of the Reaper tickles your nerve, so to speak, you should really have a go at the albums The Reaper (1993) and Heart of Darkness (1995) as well :)

    7 Feb 2:33pm Reply
  • Oniren

    I've always been hesitant about listening to this band due the impression I got when briefly hearing them on YouTube, particularly the singer's vocals. I recently received Return of the Reaper as a gift and I was blown away. Amazing.

    22 Jan 3:15am Reply
  • flaviovigatto

    New album is great!

    15 Dec 2014 Reply
  • Bruno-Thrasher

    Niiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight drifter Cries in his pillow

    16 Sep 2014 Reply
  • MrChimney

    What he said. The first time I listened to the album, I was taken aback a bit (in a good way). I realized this is something special that we're dealing with here. But 'twas only on later listenings when it fully dawned on me, that this album's a definite and pristine statement about everything Grave Digger is and has always been about. Music that will stand the test of time, as these 30 ongoing years have already shown. Tonight the Reaper's party is open - get entrance, get the trance. Forget about the words of warning, forget about the smell of death. Shake your legs and bang your heads - heavy metal breakdown.

    12 Sep 2014 Reply
  • Lionheartattack

    Only one time through, so my opinions can still change, but I can already second MrChimney here! :) The songs hit harder than on a few previous albums. I had goose bumps during Return of the Reaper and it cutting into Hell Funeral; Wargod, Resurrection Day, Road Rage Killer and Satan's Host are ruthless riffage and energy overloads; mid-tempos Tattooed Rider, Grave Desecrator and Dia de los muertos work well and have good choruses; Season of the Witch is one of the most atmospheric Digger songs in some time, and I imagine it will become even better for me once I get to know the song better; Death Smiles at All of Us has pretty much everything that represents Grave Digger; and Nothing to Believe is a great ballad. I think Boltendahl's grater-like vocals sound a bit better than in few previous studio works. The album is strong all over, and I truly think that the Reaper has returned -- if he ever went anywhere in the first place! :) Nothing really special, but a strong HEAVY METAL album!

    12 Sep 2014 Reply
  • My_Sharona

    New album sounds pretty much like every other album. [2] But I like it :)

    29 Aug 2014 Reply
  • Pedrogrief

    Far better than Maiden.

    27 Aug 2014 Reply
  • ElHuevas1428574

    ⌠↑ಠ_ಠ ←:D→ ಥ_ಥ↓⌡

    17 Aug 2014 Reply
  • Runoflife

    Overrated as fuck. Regular "epic" power/speed metal.

    10 Aug 2014 Reply
  • MrChimney

    Ha, on the contrary. The new album is quite an annihilation, and most certainly worthy of its title. And besides, at this point of Grave Digger's career, there is only so much that could sound "unique" anymore. And bearing that in mind, Return of the Reaper is pretty damn fresh. Albums with Axel just keep getting better and better all the time.

    7 Aug 2014 Reply
  • mediafireholic

    MelancholyRage: Exactly!

    3 Aug 2014 Reply
  • MelancholyRage

    New album sounds pretty much like every other album.

    2 Aug 2014 Reply
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