I was casting about in my memory palace today for rock bands that had an impact on me when I was in high school, but didn’t endure. The name Uriah Heep bubbled up to the top. These were, in my memory, Celtic progressive rockers like Jethro Tull, who similarly took the name of a mythological figure (correction: well, a character from David Copperfield), and who rocked.
Or something like that.
I’m sure Jethro Tull has some down moments, but most of them are at least agreeable, and many of them are pretty damn good.
Uriah Heep? I’m sure I’m missing something good, there was a reason they were on the radio, but this is awful! Or is it just me? You decide.
Maybe a young listener today discovering Uriah Heep might think, “I guess you had to be there.”. But people my age were there and know it’s worse than can be imagined. I still look back in anger (I’ve never was able to listen all the way through any of their songs) because my admiration for Charles Dickens knows no bounds. At least they did their part to inspire Spinal Tap.
Okay, so I’ve learned Uriah Heep were huge in the US in the early 70s, but faded to cult status here by the end of the decade. They became stadium-huge in Germany however in the 80s and remain giant stars around the non-English speaking world to this day. They’re working on a new album. Their 25 studio albums have sold more than 40 million copies!
The website Ultimate Classic Rock says this is their best song, and it is a lot better than the tune that tops this post. But even though this was from the time I would have been listening, I don’t remember it.
Clothes: A+. Dancers: A. Song: D-.
I have given Uriah Heep several tries over my music-listening career, but have unfortunately concluded they really only have one good song – “Easy Livin'”.
“Very ‘Eavy Very ‘Umble” is such a cool album title too, but it’s not good.
This “Wizard” clip sounds scarily like Styx.
My college roommate, who spent his high school years living in South Africa, was a huge Uriah Heep fan. He played their albums often so I’m familiar with their sound. I never got it. IMHO they stink!