Uriah Heep has released a new album that is not really new. During 2001, the 1986-2007 Classic line-up realized they had been playing a number of songs for years that had evolved from the original studio recordings. They recorded and re-imagined 27 of those songs and released them under the title Remasters: The Official Anthology. The collection made a second appearance in 2004 as Uriah Heep’s Gold: Looking Back 1970-2001. Now the tracks have been resurrected a third time as Totally Driven.
It is an important release in the band’s near 50 year history. Many of the songs have evolved and this release serves as a update of the band’s progress. If you are a fan of the group and have not heard these interpretations, then this is an essential release. If you are just a fan of hard rock, then have at it at Uriah Heep has been producing their brand since 1969.
Founding member and lead guitarist Mike Box, vocalist Bernie Shaw, bassist Trevor Bolder, drummer Les Kerslake, and keyboardist Phil Lanzon were the longest incarnation of the band spending 19 years together honing the songs that comprise this album. Songs such as “Blind Eye,” “Sunrise,” “Sweet Freedom,” and “Lady In Black” reveal new textures and rhythms. Yes it would have been nice to have “The Wizard,” “Sweet Lorraine,” “Weep In Silence,” and a few others included but their catalogue of music is so large that there had to be omissions.
Uriah Heep is still out on the road and in the studio. It has been 15 years since they last re-interpreted their songs. Hopefully they will get around to another update but until then, this one will do.