Saturday, February 14, 2015

February 14th, 2015 - First One (To Ram It) Down

Who loves ya on this 2015 Valentines Day?  That's right Brews and Tunes does!!  Afternoon head bangers and brew lovers!  The Meista here today with another rockin' pairing for ya... a Wasatch First One Down Winter Warmer Ale from Utah Brewers Cooperative (Wasatch Brewery) and "Ram It Down" (Remastered Edition) by Judas Priest! 

Album Info:
  • Artist: Judas Priest
  • Title: "Ram It Down"
  • Recorded: December 1987 through March 1988 at Ibiza Sound Studio in Ibiza and Puk Recording Studios in Copenhagen, Denmark
  • Release date: May 17th, 1988
  • Record company: Columbia Records
  • Personnel: K.K. Downing (guitars), Rob Halford (vocals), Ian Hill (bass), Dave Holland (drums), and Glenn Tipton (guitars and synthesizers)
  • Album cover art: Mark Wilkinson
  • Musical style: Heavy metal/speed metal
  • Sound: Moving away from the more poppy, synth-heavy sound of "Turbo", with "Ram It Down", Priest returned to a fast-paced heaviness more akin to their early '80s albums like "Defenders Of The Faith" and "Screaming For Vengeance".  The dual guitar work of Downing and Tipton is a blistering, fast-paced, firestorm of electricity and power while Hill's bass work is a booming thunderstorm on the horizon!  And Halford's vocal range is as explosive and mesmerizing as ever!
  • Major themes: Heavy metal, rock and roll, power, self-reliance, sex, and aggression.
  • Note: "Ram It Down" is the last album to feature Dave Holland on drums.  He was dealing with serious health issues at the time of the recording.  Several track include a drum machine rather than Holland.
  • Tracks:
  1. "Ram It Down"
  2. "Heavy Metal"
  3. "Love Zone"
  4. "Come And Get It"
  5. "Hard As Iron"
  6. "Blood Red Skies"
  7. "I'm A Rocker"
  8. "Johnny B. Goode"
  9. "Love You To Death"
  10. "Monsters Of Rock"
  11. "Night Comes Down" (live) - bonus track
  12. "Bloodstone" (live) - bonus track
  Brew Info:
  • Brewery: Utah Brewers Cooperative (Wasatch Brewery)
  • Website:
  • Brew: Wasatch First One Down Winter Warmer Ale
  • Style: Winter Warmer
  • Serving: 12 ounce bottle
  • ABV: 7.1%
  • Pour: The Wasatch First One Down Winter Warmer Ale pours a rather murky ruby/mahogany Coca-Cola brown with a very thick, very creamy, mashed potato head that displays layered an bubbly lacing with good retention.
  • Nose:  The nose is a combination of grainy malts, sweet caramel, and piney/floral hops.
  • Taste: The flavor is a big, bold blast of barley malt, multi-grain bread, spices, and bitter hops.  There are notes of pine, black tea, black pepper, and hints of cocoa.
  • Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied with moderate carbonation, the Wasatch First One Down Winter Warmer Ale has a sudsy and smooth mouthfeel with a clean, crisp, and refreshing, yet pleasantly biting finish.
Overall pairing: The hoppy bitterness and heartiness of the barley malts in the Wasatch First One Down Winter Warmer Ale make for a great companion to the intensity and straight-ahead heavy metal madness of "Ram It Down"!  The bitter hops and the very well-masked higher octane ABV of the brew goes great with the biting guitars, thunderous bass/drums, and vocal intensity of the mighty Priest!!

Cheers and hails!!

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