Tag Archives: mick box

URIAH HEEP’s Phil Lanzon: Chaos & Colour interview

URIAH HEEP”s Chaos & Colour has been out for some time now, and has been received enthusiastically and with great reviews from fans. Phil Lanzon, has been a major part of the Heep songwriting team since he joined the band as keyboard player. On Chaos & Colour Phil, along with founder/guitarist Mick Box, have delivered 6 awesome new Heep tracks. In this exchange Phil answers my questions pertaining to the band’s latest album, as well as what else he is up to. *Check out the links below!

With the pandemic and time away from each other and stage, was there more songwriting going on prior to recording Chaos & Colour?  Was there an abundance of songs & ideas to choose from this time around? 

Yes there was plenty of that. Mick and I wrote songs remotely during the pandemic. It was unusual but worked really well. There are songs and ideas left over, maybe for the next album, who knows.

You worked again with Jay Ruston. Was that an easy decision?

Yes it was easy. Our working relationship worked really well with Living the Dream so we wanted that to continue with Chaos.

Russell & Simon Pinto contributed 4 songs to Chaos & Colour. Was there some tough decisions in cutting down the number of songs?

Well there is always tough decisions when choosing the final songs. Especially as others band members are contributing; which we all feel has made for a great combination of material.

Chaos & Colour is a great follow up to Living The Dream, but I think a bit of a step up with more varied tracks trhoughout. Was there any deliberate move to try and include more progressive moments or ballads? 

I personally always feel that there should be a prog section within a Heep album, specifically to keep variety in the material and also take the listener on a journey. It is a Heep feature that makes an appearance on many Heep albums from the early days to today.

Can you give me a bit of insight into some of the tracks- lyrically or recall on how it all came together… 

I’ll keep it short. We always keep a strict eye on our lyrics that they don’t stray into the ‘norm,’ which is a pitfall of many artists, so we use the basic premise of positivity and the knowledge that there is good everywhere. You just gotta find it!

You seem to have a few new keyboard sounds on this album, such as on “Fly Like An Eagle”. I get a bit of Dream Theatre feel in there. Can you touch on any new sounds, approaches or equipment? 

Not a great deal of new sounds, I was just messing around with a mini-moog style sound and decided it worked for the track.

“Age of Changes” is a fantastic track (my early favorite). Can you touch on this song? 

I wrote this lyric based on my first childhood sweetheart. A story I’m sure will resonate with so many. We go through so many changes in our lives but the first real awakening to that fact hits most of us in the school yard.

You guys recently completed the 50th anniversary tour. How did You enjoy the shows? Any highlights or favorite moments in the set for you? 

We all enjoyed the tour, it was a huge success as far as we are concerned and made a whole lot of Heepies very happy. The acoustic show was well received and was a joy to perform. 

Phil, in your time awaiting the next Heep tour – might you be working on another solo project, book, or any guest appearances anywhere?

I am at the moment trying to sell my Musical, I mean, musical theatre. It is a full length musical about Ellis Island New York in 1917. The script is with an American producer as I write.

What are you listening to these days? Any current (new) favorites?

Nothing new at the moment. I am immersed in my artwork right now. Check out my Instagram.





*UH live photos courtesy of Markusheavymusicblog , from Hamburg, Germany, September 2022. See more HERE.

URIAH HEEP – release new single days ahead of 25th studio album

URIAH HEEP has a new single out from Chaos & Colour, which is to be released on the 27. The rocker “Hurricane” was written by (drummer) Russell Gilbrook, along with friend & guitarist Simon J. Pinto, who has played with Les Binks (Les Binks’ Priesthood), and also worked with Adam Wakeman, Brian May, and Sam Smith among others. “Hurricane” is an outstanding heavy rocker and sounds like it should make an excellent fit in to the band’s live show.

The anthemic and epic “Hurricane” carries an underlying historical and mythological theme. Co-writer and drummer Russell Gilbrook explains: “Simon (Pinto) and I wrote the song about how our ancestors looked at storms and how these can be interpreted as being messages from the Gods… Their power is awesome and a great inspiration for a rocking track!”

Founding member Mick Box comments: “Music and lyrics are of paramount importance to me… I used to hate those ‘80s MTV million dollar videos as they created such a visual image that all calls to imagination were lost because you didn’t have to think. I think the power of music and lyrics are that they do certain things to certain people.”

Chaos & Colour is an album which bristles with explosive classic rock guitars, supreme harmonies, and Heep’s famously generous keyboard foundation. “One Nation, One Sun” is a journey of soaring balladic contemplation, “Fly Like An Eagle” takes the listener on a journey of meditation, whilst “Closer To Your Dreams” is a battle cry for all rockers to get out there and do it, with Shaw imploring that “So many have tried but slipped away/Now it’s time for you to have your say.” During the entire album, Bernie Shaw’s timeless vocals sit expertly beside the band’s phenomenal artistry (Mick Box – guitar, Phil Lanzon – keyboard, Russell Gilbrook – drums, Dave Rimmer – bass), rounding out exceptional performances throughout.






URIAH HEEP – Chaos & Colour (a review)

A new Uriah Heep album is something I look forward to, and after the last few years this is most welcome! Now, there is no song titled “Chaos & Colour”, and I am sure I’ll be saying those 2 words in the wrong order at some point. There is an explanation of the title tho from guitarist/founding member Mick Box – “The album title reflects that we were in chaotic times with being locked down, tours being cancelled, businesses folding, and all the chaos that was thrown into the world,… and as far as I could see it, the only colour people had was through music. It helped so many people get through those difficult years, using that strength and power which music has, to make those bad times not quite so bad.” And the cover art, it’s colorful, created (again) by Paul Tippett (whos’ credits also include Black Star Riders, It Bites, and Europe).

So, at this point in the band’s career (having turned 50 in 2020, and recently touring their 50th anniversary), some may expect a break. But, instead Heep have recorded and will release their 25th studio album at the end of the month. And Chaos & Colour will be worth the wait to Heep fans, especially those who were happy with 2018’s Living The Dream. That record was very good, the first 4 tracks on that alone had me hooked on first listen. Chaos & Colour is 9 tracks (vinyl), and 11 – if you get the CD! The new album keeps up with some standout Heep-heavy rockers, and adds more variety with progressive tracks, ballads, and a couple of excellent lengthier numbers., all produced (again) by Canadian Jay Ruston.

Overall, Chaos & Colour is more consistently strong song-wise, kicking off with the first single “Save Me Tonight”. It’s another collaboration between bass player Davey Rimmer and Jeff Scott Soto. At 3 and a half minutes, it’s a full-on energetic rocking opener with all that’s expected in a Heep rocker — heavy guitar and Hammond organ, harmonies, a memorable chorus.. The first 5 tracks are rockers, “Silver Sunlight” & “Hail The Sunrise” are both good, but (for me) it is “Age Of Changes” (one of many from Mick Box & Phil Lanzon) and “Hurricane” (one of four from Russell Gilbrook & Simon Pinto) that stand out, and are early favorites. “Age Of Reason” is a classic Heep styled melodic rocker that lyrically reflects on a first love/past relationship, I’ve played this one (and the next) more than anything else here, and I’m already putting this one alongside the best Shaw-era tunes (see “Between Two Worlds”, “Take Away My Soul”, ” One Minute”). I was surprised to see this was one of the ‘CD only’ tracks! “Hurricane” is more of a thundering rocker, that sounds like it will make a great live song. Side one (LP) ends with the soaring ballad “One Nation, One Sun”, a feel-good number that slowly builds throughout. It is one of 3 tracks that clock in over 7 and a half minutes, all of which longtime Heep fans will dig.

Side 2 (of the LP) is the more progressive half, it opens with the glorious “Golden Light”; this one is highlighted by Mick’s guitar performance throughout this one. “You’ll Never Be Alone” is a story based epic about a child’s magical dream that involves magical places, lurking danger, and rescues. And musically it plays out very fitting with a heavy intro, soft piano, build up, going through a few changes; racing to the edge and then simply dropping back in to piano, starting over as a new dream. Progressive rockers “Golden Light” (love Mick’s guitar melody throughout this one), and the more hypnotic “Fly Like An Eagle” (Phil Lanzon’s keyboards weave throughout this one and it’s an outstanding vocal from Bernie) are both excellent, with both tracks offering something new and are fairly heavy. Now, the LP closes with the eight-minute + heavy prog-rocker “Freedom To Be Free”, it’s full on Hammond & guitar, but also has a few surprises fans will dig, as the song progresses (and I will leave it at that!) The last track is (CD only) “Closer To Your Dreams”, a shorter rock track that is reminiscent of “Easy Livin'” and “Everything In LIfe”, a fitting end to a great ride. I think Heep fans will enjoy Chaos & Colour more so, as it journeys a bit further than the band’s previous 4 albums in sound and song. Now, when’s the tour start!?


Save Me Tonight
Silver Sunlight
Hail the Sunrise
Age of Changes (CD only)
One Nation, One Sun
Golden Light
You’ll Never Be Alone
Fly Like an Eagle
Freedom to Be Free
Closer to Your Dreams (CD only)
Save Me Tonight (Demo; Deluxe CD only)


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URIAH HEEP – Announce 25th studio album Chaos & Colour, release new single

Uriah Heep have released the first single & video from their forthcoming 25th studio album – Chaos & Colour – to be released in January of the new year! Details, ordering links, track-listing below.

November 8, 2022 – British hard rock legends and progenitors Uriah Heep announce the release of their 25th studio album, Chaos & Colour, set for release January 27th, 2023 via Silver Lining Music. Pre-orders available from November 8th on this site https://lnk.to/ChaosandColour

“Save Me Tonight” is another powerful melodic rock track which we have chosen to be the first single as well as the opening track of the album,” says Mick Box, Uriah Heep’s venerable and effervescent founding member, “it is made for rock radio and will surely be included on our new set list in 2023.”

Chaos & Colour is an album which bristles with explosive classic rock guitars, supreme harmonies, and Heep’s famously generous keyboard foundation. It is, unsurprisingly, an album that found its extra thrust during the COVID-19 pandemic, which was as bizarre for Uriah Heep as it was for humanity in general. “The album title reflects that we were in chaotic times with being locked down, tours being cancelled, businesses folding, and all the chaos that was thrown into the world,” explains Box, “and as far as I could see it, the only colour people had was through music. It helped so many people get through those difficult years, using that strength and power which music has, to make those bad times not quite so bad.” There were still the looming spectre of protocols and rules to follow in the middle of 2021, as the world tried to find its feet. Heep slowly found their way into Chapel Studios in London during the summer of 2021 as restrictions were tentatively lifted, working once again with Jay Ruston (Anthrax, Corey Taylor, Black Star Riders). “Jay was completely on board with what we are trying to achieve in the studio,” says Box. “We’re a band that has a fantastic heritage and to carry on that tradition it was vitally important that the band recorded in the studio all playing at the same time. Jay understood that and he pulled out the best of us as a band, as well as individual players, while getting us some amazing sounds.” Led by Box, it is no surprise that themes of light, love and, ultimately, positivity are constant through the album eleven tracks. “One Nation, One Sun” is a journey of soaring balladic contemplation, “Fly Like An Eagle” takes the listener on a journey of meditation, whilst “Closer To Your Dreams” is a battle cry for all rockers to get out there and do it, with Shaw imploring that “So many have tried but slipped away/Now it’s time for you to have your say.” During the entire album, Bernie Shaw’s timeless vocals sit expertly beside the band’s phenomenal artistry (Mick Box – guitar, Phil Lanzon – keyboard, Russell Gilbrook – drums, Dave Rimmer – bass), rounding out exceptional performances throughout. Produced by Jay Ruston, and engineered by Pieter Rietkerk, Chaos & Colour is a superb album of quality hard rock from the pioneers of the genre who continue to create top class material. Old fans will be reinvigorated whilst new fans will surely find Chaos & Colour an exceptional discovery.

Following the intense disruption to live music caused by the pandemic, the band are ecstatic to be back on the road and continue to bring their live show across Europe this winter. For a full list of confirmed dates, tickets, and additional information visit this this location – http://www.uriah-heep.com/2020Site/Index.html

Tour Dates:

12 November – Nürnberg, Germany – Löwensaal*

14 November – Vilnius, Lithuania – Compensa Concert Hall

15 November – Tallinn, Estonia – Alexela Concert Hall

17 November – Helsinki, Finland – Helsinki Ice Hall

19 November – Turku, Finland – Konserttitalo

20 November – Oulu, Finland – Madetojan Sali

22 November – Umeå, Sweden – Idun

23 November – Stockholm, Sweden – Göta Lejon

24 November – Oslo, Norway – Sentrum Scene

26 November – Kristiansand, Norway – Kilden Performing Arts Centre

27 November – Stavanger, Norway – Stavanger Kuppelhallen

28 November – Bergen, Norway – USF Verftet

29 November – Trondheim, Norway – Olavshallen

1 December – Sundsvall, Sweden – Tonhallen

2 December – Gothenburg, Sweden – Gothenburg Studios

3 December – Randers, Denmark – Vaerket Teatre & Musikhus

4 December – Copenhagen, Denmark – Docken Koncerter

5 December – Malmö, Sweden – Slagthuset Teater

7 December – Stuttgart, Germany – Liederhalle*

8 December – Dresden, Germany – Culture Palace*

9 December – Suhl, Germany – Congress Centrum Suhl*

10 December – Prague, Czech Republic – Forum Karlin

11 December – Budapest, Hungary – Hungexpo Hall C

13 December – Sofia, Bulgaria – National Palace of Culture, Hall 1

14 December – Thessaloníki, Greece*

15 December – Athens, Greece* (*Celebrating 50 years of Uriah Heep)

Chaos & Colour will be available to pre-order from November 8, in Black and Coloured Vinyl configurations, as a standard CD Digipak, a Deluxe CD packaged in a hardcover book with Uriah Heep’s Chaos & Colour signature patch and in digital formats.

“Save Me Tonight” is the first single from the upcoming album Chaos & Colour. Available to pre-order from November 9th here: https://lnk.to/ChaosandColour, Out via Silver Lining Music on January 27th, 2023.

Music video by Natalia Jonderko Śmiechowicz – N.STATION Animation & Design Studio.

The buoyant, blistering single “Save Me Tonight”, feels at once like a cry for lost love and an expression of COVID era pain. “I think that’s the beauty of a good lyric,” smiles founding member Mick Box. “A good lyric means that you can interpret it in many ways, and it’s so important to me when writing a lyric that it has those avenues to go in.” enthuses Box.

The single was written by bass guitarist Dave Rimmer and Jeff Scott Soto, who has been the vocalist for the likes of Journey and Yngwie Malmsteen. “’Save Me Tonight’ comes from a place of frustration and helplessness living through these unprecedented past couple of years but hanging on to this raging hope that we would all meet again! Once again, collaborating with Jeff Scott Soto has been a natural and very creative experience and the perfect platform for me to express these feelings and to carry on the Heep legacy.” Rimmer comments.

Chaos & Colour Track List:

Save Me Tonight / Silver Sunlight / Hail The Sunrise / Age Of Changes* / Hurricane / One Nation, One Sun / Golden Light / You’ll Never Be Alone / Fly Like An Eagle / Freedom To Be Free / Closer To Your Dreams* / Save Me Tonight (demo)**

*CD and Digital only

**Deluxe CD only


Mick Box – Lead Guitar / Vocals

Phil Lanzon – Keyboards / Vocals

Bernie Shaw – Lead Vocals

Dave Rimmer – Bass Guitar / Vocals

Russell Gilbrook – Drums & Percussion

Produced by Jay Ruston

Engineered by Pieter Rietkerk

Recorded at Chapel Studios, UK

Mixed by Jay Ruston at TRS West, Sherman Oaks, California

Additional Engineering by John Douglas

Mastered by Paul Logus

URIAH HEEP – A Look At High and Mighty

Among the Heep faithful there are 3 albums that tend to stir up the most controversy and conversation, and often one of them is cited as the band’s ‘worst’ album by many fans or rock historians. I’ve already written previously my support for Conquest and for Equator, both albums that land at the bottom of any Heep album ranking, and the 3rd in that trilogy would be 1976’s High and Mighty – the last to feature original singer & founding member David Byron. Frankly, none of these 3 land in the bottom 3 for me, in particular High and Mighty, an album I rank in the top half of the band’s catalogue.

High and Mighty came at the end of a very busy period for the band. In ’75 – the band had changed bass players, adding John Wetton in place of Gary Thain, who had been fired, and the band got down to releasing Return To Fantasy in the summer of ’75. Ken Hensley also had his 2nd solo album Eager To Please released not too far off from that. A huge world tour followed the release of that Heep album, followed by David Byron’s solo album Take No Prisoners, and a Best of Uriah Heep issued in most markets (except for North America). So, to say High and Mighty might’ve been rushed soon after is more than likely. Despite Return To Fantasy being a huge success in the UK, the band’s last few albums were selling less in North America, and with this perhaps was the motivation to ‘fire’ Gerry Bron as the new album’s producer and produce it themselves. But, where as RTF had many more band co-writes and member contributions, High and Mighty would consist of entirely Ken Hensley penned tracks, with Wetton getting 2 co-writes. Ken has stated in the past the album felt more like a solo album, and both he and Wetton noted that not much of the band were around at the time, leaving the 2 of them to take on most of the production, aided by engineer Ashley Howe.

John Wetton’s presence is felt immediately on the opening track “One Way Or Another”, in which he takes the lead vocal. A fantastic beginning to this album with the opening guitar riff coming in with a fresh new strong sound, before Wetton’s bass, then drums and organ join in. This is a standout track, and a shame it never got a proper single release. There would be no global single from this album, with this song being issued in the UK (limited), and nothing in North America. David Byron was apparently off with chicken pox at the time of recording this track, so that was the reason given for Wetton’s lead vocal. John recalled in an interview that when David did come back he went in to sing the song, part way through stopped, saying that it was fine the way it was. “Weep In Silence”, a heavy guitar driven ballad, with Hensley’s distinct guitar sound throughout and a great vocal from Byron remains a fan favorite from this album, though it was never played live. “Misty Eyes” starts out gently with Byron singing the opening lines alone before the band comes in softly with acoustic guitar, organ and drums. A good lighter pop song that would’ve made a catchy single, IMO. The first side ends with “Midnight”, the longest track on the album, and most progressive,. An often overlooked epic in the band’s catalogue, and although Wetton didn’t get a co-write on this Or on “One Way Or Another”, his performances (bass, guitar, keyboards, vocals or backing vocals) make these 2 tracks his greatest contributions to his time with the band.

Side 2 opens with the anthem “Can’t Keep A Good Band Down”, a response and dig at the band’s critics. A good upbeat rocker that would’ve (again) made for a fine single. A shame the song would never feature in the band’s live show back then or ever. Next up was the pop-rock of “Woman Of The World”; a good tune, tho’ a bit on the lighter side. Might’ve made a decent single, but like a number of tracks here it lacks an extended solo or something unique as the song merely fades out quickly after the last chorus. “Woman Of The World” would include the band’s message to Bron in the harmonies – You can stick this contract up your flue “Footprints In The Snow” is a favorite of mine on this album, co-credited to Wetton. Love the mix of acoustic and electric guitars organ, and harmonies. An underrated classic from the Byron era, IMO. From here, despite how much I love this album, I can see how critics might disagree with my enthusiasm, as the next 3 tracks drop off a bit, especially the funky keyboardy “I Can’t Stop Singing”. I never ‘got’ this song, and listening to it now, I still don’t. . tho’ it’s not bad, and David sounds convincing on the verses, but the chorus… meh…. “Make A Little Love” is a guitar blues n boogie number, featuring slide guitar. Sounds like it could’ve been a good old school jam rocker, but it ends too early, like a few tracks here, sounding rushed . This one did make it in to the live set on the High & Mighty tour, but like the rest of the album was never played again (aside from Ken resurrecting a track live with John Wetton). The album ends on a high note, but a sad one with “Confession”, with David delivering an apologetic lyric on Ken’s piano ballad. It’s an excellent, moving ballad that sits behind the band’s previous ballads “Rain” and “The Easy Road”. A shame it ends so soon.

In 1995 I interviewed John Wetton and he recalled no leftover tracks being recorded, but sure enough 2 outtakes would eventually be released. “Sunshine”, a good upbeat number; love Lee Kerslake’s intro and playing here. The other cut is the guitar heavy “Name Of The Game”. This song appeared in another version on Ken Hensley’s From Time To Time album in ’94 (an album of solo outtakes and demos), as Ken had recorded the track in the late ’70s with members of Bad Company. A great heavy riff to open this song, fantastic delivery from David and slide guitar from Ken. To me, this sounds like it wasn’t totally completed or mixed well enough, hence it’s lack of inclusion on the album, but a crying shame this wasn’t totally finished and cleaned up and included – could’ve made for a very different outcome of an album that is often brushed off as “lightweight”.

High and Mighty received a huge press bash at the time in Switzerland, where James Bond was filmed. But after that the album dropped – with no worldwide single, and little push. As the band toured the US before it’s release – with no single on the radio or record in the shops, High and Mighty was kinda doomed. The tour saw Ken Hensley leave the band and return, and David Byron fired at the end of the European tour. John Wetton had already made up his mind due to the internal conflict, and and left as well. Many fans wrote the band off after David Byron was dismissed, and the band’s profile and album sales would continue to sink in North America.

But really, I kinda love this album. I realize it may be seen as lightweight or too much of a Ken Hensley solo project by many old Heep fans, but to me it had a new fresh approach and sound following Return To Fantasy and Wonderworld. The band experimented, did something new, and High and Mighty offered up a number of tracks that would’ve made fine singles. With John Wetton having a major hand in it, it sounded much more modern in tune with UK nd Asia, and a forward step from the band’s previous albums. Heck, I even think the album cover art is pretty cool!

KJ, 02/’22