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Uriah Heep

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Uriah Heep High and Mighty album cover
3.20 | 284 ratings | 16 reviews | 8% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1976

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. One Way or Another (4:37)
2. Weep in Silence (5:09)
3. Misty Eyes (4:15)
4. Midnight (5:40)
5. Can't Keep a Good Band Down (3:40)
6. Woman of the World (3:10)
7. Footprints in the Snow (3:56)
8. Can't Stop Singing (3:15)
9. Make a Little Love (3:24)
10. Confession (2:16)

Total Time 39:22

Bonus tracks on 1997 Essential remaster :
11. Name of the Game (outtake) (4:59) *
12. Sundown (outtake) (3:20) *

Bonus tracks on 2004 Sanctuary remaster:
11. Name of the Game (outtake) (5:13) *
12. Sundown (alternate version) (3:20)
13. Weep in Silence (extended version) (7:46) *
14. Name of the Game (demo version) (3:21)
15. Does Anything Matter (demo version) (3:20)
16. I Close My Eyes (demo version) (4:18) *
17. Take Care (demo version) (2:57)
18. Can't Keep a Good Band Down (edited version) (3:09) *

* Previously unreleased

Line-up / Musicians

- David Byron / vocals (excl. 1)
- Mick Box / lead guitar, 6- & 12-string acoustic guitars
- Ken Hensley / organ, piano, Moog, electric piano, guitars (slide, acoustic, electric 12-string, pedal steel), tubular bells, vocals (1)
- John Wetton / bass, guitar, Mellotron, electric piano, vocals (1)
- Lee Kerslake / drums, percussion, backing vocals

Releases information

Artwork: Shirtsleeve studios

LP Bronze ‎- ILPS 9384 (1976, UK)

CD Bronze ‎- 260 133 (1987, Germany)
CD Essential ‎- ESMCD 468 (1997, UK) Remastered by Mike Brown & Robert M. Corich w/ 2 bonus tracks
CD Sanctuary Midline ‎- SMRCD101 (2004, Europe) Remaster w/ 8 bonus tracks

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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Buy URIAH HEEP High and Mighty Music

URIAH HEEP High and Mighty ratings distribution

(284 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(8%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(32%)
Good, but non-essential (41%)
Collectors/fans only (16%)
Poor. Only for completionists (4%)

URIAH HEEP High and Mighty reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars One way or another, a change is inevitable

David Byron's final album with Uriah Heep came all too soon. The recording of "High and Mighty" was apparently a somewhat piecemeal affair, with only Hensley (who yet again dominates the song writing) and Wetton committed in full to the project. The absence of Gerry Bron as producer for the first time is less apparent than might have been expected, but he was reportedly unimpressed with the results.

The two sides of the LP make an appropriate division between what turned out to be an impressive side one, and a poor side two. Mick Box is largely absent throughout, with Hensley by and large providing both keyboards and guitar.

The opening track, "One way or another" doesn't even feature Byron's vocals, with Wetton taking on those duties. Ironically Byron, who was reportedly comfortable with the finished track, played Hammond organ on it instead. It is though an intriguingly successful diversion for the band in a slightly less organised direction. Hensley's middle 8 restores the more melodic sound, providing a harmonic counterpoint. The track has similarities to "Dreamer" which opened "Sweet Freedom".

Byron first appears on the beautiful "Weep in silence", a softer track but highly melodic almost emotional, with Hensley's keyboards swirling around the pained voice of Byron.

"Midnight", which closes side one, is a miniature epic in about 6 minutes. In that time it moves from an attention grabbing opening riff, through a number of time changes and brief instrumental breaks, to fade with a reprise of the opening riff. "Midnight" stand proud alongside Hensley's finest compositions, and would have made a fitting end to the Byron era Uriah Heep. Unfortunately, they continued onto side two of the album, which brings together some of the weakest material recorded by the band while Byron was a member.

Had the entire album been up to the standard of the four tracks on side one, "High and mighty" would have been worthy of it's name. Unfortunately side two of the album only served to indicate that radical change was needed, and such change was indeed, just around the corner.

There are numerous bonus tracks on the deluxe remaster, including a successful cut and paste extension of "Weep in silence". Also included are demos by Hensley of some of the album tracks, which are in fact better than the final versions. "Does anything matter", which became "Woman of the world" in particular shows how the track could have been developed into a sensitive ballad, instead of the nondescript pop version which was selected.

Review by Chris S
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars I have to say that this is an excellent album. It is David Byron's last album with the band and I personally stopped following them after High and Mighty. To my detriment perhaps, however listening to dizzy songs like ' Misty Eyes', the slow march of ' Footprints in the Snow' and the quirky but apt' Can't Keep A Good Band Down' and ' Can't Stop Singing' it reminds me of what a great vocalist Byron was and also what a vital ingredient to the band and the Hensley formula he was.This album comes highly recommended.
Review by Eetu Pellonpaa
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Another slightly unbalanced album from an unstable but fabulous band. The record begins with exceptionally great songs and performances, but somehow the power of the record starts to decrease as further as the album spins. The opener "One Way or Another" has John Wetton also singing the leads on it, and it's a truly dynamic and great song with his powerfully hammering bass guitar. Though this is very different music than the legacy of earlier King Crimson records he was part of creating, his familiar style of playing bass can be heard still, and fits wonderfully to the more earthbound style of the heepsters. The following ballad "Weep In Silence" is also marvelous, a very emotional minor ballad, and has several layers of guitars "weeping" on it wonderfully. "Misty Eyes" and "Midnight" are also great tracks, shimmering Uriah Heep's positive magic, and also the following "Can't Keep a Good Band Down" is fine positive mood lifter, but then the rest of the songs are only average, not very memorable compositions. I also had a change to listen through the bonus tracks presented on the remastered CD, but they didn't sound very promising either to my ears. There was a fun anecdote found from the liner notes of a newer CD though; Some band member stated that the album title "High and Mighty" kind of described the mental state of the group from that time. According this description on tour as automatically operating glass-doors of a hotel failed to open for Mr. Byron, he solved the problem with a flying kick and got eventually to the lobby through the shards.
Review by ZowieZiggy
2 stars After the average "Wonderworld" and "Return to Fantasy" what can we expect from the Heep ? "One Way Or Another" featuring Wetton on the lead vocal, is the first attempt to FM / AOR music (nothing surprising with Wetton involved). This song is not really bad but do not expect anything great (backing vocals are almost unbearable). IMO, this is the Heep swan song (first era).

"Weep In Silence" is a very good song : a great rock ballad with superb guitar play. Melody is very nice. Somewhat poppy though (again, backing vocals are really weak).

There are many average songs on this album , which can be heard without listening if you see what I mean : you can play them while you're cooking or washing your car and you'll get the impression : not too bad. But when you listen to them carefully, there is not really a lot to remember. "Misty Eyes", "Midnight" (another ballad with great bass), "Can't Stop Singing" (good rocking tempo) etc. Most of the records will be of that vein : middle of the road rock music.

Some poor tracks like "Woman Of The World", "Footprints In The Snow" (again very poor backing vocals) and "Can't Stop Singing" (they should have done it in this particular case) and the mellow "Sundown" (piano-lobby-bar oriented : real bad).

"Make A Little Love" is above par : a nice old rock'n'roll flavor to kick a bit. It gives a change is this rather monotonous album.

The second good song of the album is "Name Of The Game" : the first bonus track of the remastered CD version ! Again, why didn't they include this track in the original one is a mystery. It is already the third or fourth time I am noticing this for the Heep : great bonus tracks superior to the original studio material.

Surprisingly, vocals are rather weak and dull for most of the time. It will be Byron's last one with the band. IMO, this album is even weaker than "Wonderworld". Three out of then, but I will upgrade the remastered CD version to two stars thanks to "Name.".

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars This is the last album of Uriah Heep with David Byron as lead vocalist. This might not be a good album by some people but I think this album deserves better appreciation. This is also an important point for the band because after this album the band will not take Byron anymore as member of the band and for Byron that meant "enough is enough". Musically, this is not a bad one at all especially if you observe the styles. My first impression start with the opening track "One Way or Another" which for me is a good start for a rocker. The style is truly Uriah Heep's, especially with the guitar work. The second track "Weep in Silence" is a killer with bluesy style and stunning guitar work The melody line is very strong especially when Byron starts to roll with his high register notes. The guitar solo during transition pieces is really excellent. The song moves beautifully in relatively slow tempo. "Misty Eyes" demonstrates great vocal line by Byron as well as vocal harmonies. Unfortunately when the music enters its main body, it sounds like pop ballad song. "Woman of the World" is a simple song with interesting bass lines. "Make a Little Love" is a straight rocker with good melody line and excellent vocal by Byron. "Confession" reminds me to "Rain" of "The Magician's Birthday" album. It's a powerful mellow track showcasing Byron's clear voice and nice piano. "Name of The Game" brings another blues-rock music with stunning guitar work. The album is concluded with "Sundown" which demonstrates Mick Box guitar work more obvious.

Review by febus
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / In Memoriam

When HIGH AND MIGHTY came out, i didn't have any great expectations as the last 2 URIAH HEEP albums were kind of a downer. But to my surprise, when i got it, i liked it right away and still do very much after all those years.

First of all, KEN HENSLEY re-took total control of the writing duties wit a little help of JOHN WETTON here and there. I guess democracy was not a good concept for this band. And guess what, KEN HENSLEY came back quite inspired; not at the level from LOOK AT YOURSELF or DEMONS AND WIZARDS as there are a pair of stinkers on then-side 2, but the rest is high quality.

What was the first side of the album, the first 4 tracks are all great! the opener ''ONE WAY OR ANOTHER iis sung by...JOHN WETTON lead is a ver powerful hard rocker, yet with the classic melodic touch URIAH HEEP is known for. After that, the band show us that it still can produce magical songs like they used to at the beginning. What is there not to like on WEEP IN SILENCE and this magnificent guitar : a 10/10 UH song; just plain beautiful. MIDNIGHT is one of the other highlight of the album, the most proggish track; nice bass and mellotron from WETTON and of course another gorgeous melody sung by the divine BYRON; could have come from on any URIAH HEEP cd from the golden age.

Even the guitar of Mick box who again has been relocated in the background on this album sounds magnificent when he is allowed to showcase his talent; not too many notes played, just the ones that count, the nice ones.

The other side of the album is not as strong as the first one, but it's still way up compared to RETURN TO FANTASY or WONDERWORLD. FOOTPRINTS IN THE SNOW is another one of those ''magical'' moments offered by the band; a very emotional melody played wonderfully by all 5 members where DAVID BYRON shines again. Who knew it would be the last time?? You have also some average tracks like ''CAN'T KEEP A GGOD BAND DOWN'' or ''MAKE A LIITLE LOVE'' kind of american-style boogies not really a URIAH HEEP strength; but MICK BOX is having some good fun with them at least! not bad, but not super. And CONFESSION is a perfect gentle ballad to close this very good album.

That would be the last album of an era; the golden era of URIAH HEEP; the singer DAVID BYRON will be shown the door, but after that would never be the same band. DAVID BYRON was URIAH HEEP. (RIP)

I can't give the 5 stars treatment to this album as it is not perfect but 4 stars for sure


Review by Tarcisio Moura
3 stars I always felt that High and Mighty was a very underrated album. Considering much of the the reviews here I see I'm not alone. This is very good, since Ive enojoyed this album for years. Ok, this is no The Magician's Birthday nor Demons And Wizzards (their true masterpieces, ever), but it does have some great tunes that are beginning to get the recognition they deserve.

Songs like One Way Or Another, Weep In Silence, Footprints In The Snow and Midnight are classic Uriah Heep anthems: full of power and inspiration. Confession is simply one of Hensley's most beautiful and poignant ballads, ending the Byron era with a touch of grace and delicacy. The remaining tracks may be not as good, but none is crap. Actually a lot of fans dislike the album for many reasons other than the quality of the material here over the years: it was recorded to please the american audiences (or so they say), the production was weak (no Gerry Bron here), little commitement from some band members (Mick Box plays only on a few tracks), etc., etc. Plus David Byron was on the verge of being sacked (he was fired soon after the completition of this album). John Wetton would soon also leave in a short time.

Considering the crisis Uriah Heep was facing during this period, this is a very strong and valid work after all. And far better than a lot of things they'd do in the future (and I mean a lot!). This band really had something special during the Byron years and even not on their best period, they still come across with an album far superior to a lot of their competitors. Conclusion: not really essential Heep, but very good anyway: 3,5 stars.

Review by poslednijat_colobar
3 stars My mark shall surely be 3 stars for this album. But what I would like to say about this album? I really believe this is the worst album for Uriah Heep with David Byron on vocals. Here we can still find the classic Uriah Heep sound, but regretfully with lower musical qualities. It wasn't the best time for making new album for Uriah Heep. It had already been sure that David Byron will be fired after that due to his alcohol addicted problems. Most of the music here is very simple, which is not ordinary for that band. Surely the worst album with Byron, but still fresh enough to beat most of the further albums by the band!
Review by TCat
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
2 stars It's 1976, and Uriah Heep seems to have fallen to some kind of trap. For every step forward they took, the next step was a step backwards trying to find that sweet spot between heavy prog and pop. They never really found it, by the way. But they spent a lot of years trying. Their previous album "Return to Fantasy" was an attempt to try to get back to their former sound with a bit more prog in it and more fantasy-themed lyrics. They even brought in John Wetton to be their bassist, and it seemed to be a great step as their fans were thinking this was going to be a return to form. But, then, they released this album "High & Mighty", with the same line-up, but totally messed up by slipping to out-right pop on some of their songs, and also by stepping away from the fantasy themed lyrics again. It was a big disappointment.

It doesn't exactly start out that way though. Right at the onset, the best two tracks on the album begin it all. It still surprises me that when this album starts, John Wetton's voice is coming through the speakers. The first few times I heard this, I had to do a double take to make sure I put the right album on. "One Way or Another" features his lead vocals, but it is the only time you'll hear him at the forefront on this album. However, this is followed up by another great track "Weep in Silence" that actually sounds like UH in it's glory days again with the original lead singer David Byron still in the line-up, and he definitely brought his soul along with him for this track. Personally, I always thought he was their most talented singer with an amazing range and depth of emotion. So, it all starts showing some promise. Unfortunately, it goes downhill from there.

Another thing that is apparent on this album is that the tracks are all under 6 minutes. Gone are the days of the epic tracks. Sure, there are plenty of great progressive albums with tracks less that 6 minutes, but the quality of the songwriting is suddenly apparent in "Misty Eyes" and the music is simple and the soul seems to be missing now. "Midnight" is decent with a more lyrically heavy track, but it's mostly not memorable. At this point, the only other somewhat good track is "Footprints in the Snow" mostly for the guitar break. Everything else is barely tolerable unless you are looking for straightforward pop. The biggest failures here are "Can't Keep a Good Band Down" and the equally tacky "Can't Stop Singing", only memorable because they are so bad. Everything else in underwhelming and even Byron can't seem to find enough emotion to pump these mediocre tracks out.

After the release of this album, Byron was fired by the band because of his alcohol problems and the fact that his performances were getting unpredictable. It wasn't long after this that John Wetton also opted out of the band as he was feeling like he was quite out of place, which he was. Thus begins the revolving door syndrome that the band would suffer for many years to come, and at this point, they would find it difficult to come close to the sounds and style of their earlier days. For many fans, this was the last straw, and many stopped being loyal to the band never to come back to the fold. Yes there are a couple of tracks here that are worth putting on a "best of" playlist, but for the most part, the album is only worth getting because it's the last album with Wetton and Byron. But even then, there isn't much here to bother with.

Latest members reviews

5 stars Writing about High & Mighty; it reminds you about how perishable everything is. Of all five members from this recording only guitar player Mick Box is still alive. Just a historical second ago they were all touring your hometown and also sipped your beer stash. If you consider the other bi ... (read more)

Report this review (#2934707) | Posted by Per Kohler | Tuesday, June 20, 2023 | Review Permanlink

2 stars A collection of mediocore pop rock, with light hints of progressive rock, unlike their past albums, like Salisbury, Look at Yourself, Demons and Wizards, and The Magicians Birthday just to name a few of their more proggy efforts. No extended tracks, and the musicianship is very poor for this ... (read more)

Report this review (#256511) | Posted by Rushlover13 | Wednesday, December 16, 2009 | Review Permanlink

4 stars High and Mighty, really...Never before the sound of Heep was so ambitious, with extravagant ideas and arrangements than in this work. I must say this was the most difficult of all of the band's albuns for me to get into, me having to listen to each song somewhat like 4 or 5 times until 'under ... (read more)

Report this review (#98470) | Posted by Grimble Crumble | Sunday, November 12, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars To me, this is the last of the best Uriah Heep ever. A couple of albums after this one, the band will drift into mediocrity and lose its character. High and Mighty is a very enjoyable album all through -- though it lacks any 'masterpiece' song. Byron's vocals never sounded better. The opening tra ... (read more)

Report this review (#84055) | Posted by Sharier | Tuesday, July 18, 2006 | Review Permanlink

3 stars I had high expectations for this album, (one might say "high & mighty"!) because I had 3 of their excellent earlier albums "Salisbury", "Demons & Wizards" and "Magicians Birthday" (all 3 subsequently purchased on CD), and because I felt that the John Wetton albums with "King Crimson" were amon ... (read more)

Report this review (#76872) | Posted by freebird | Tuesday, May 2, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars An underrated high point in the band's cannon, H&M benefits greatly from John Wetton's bass and Hensley's inspired set of compositions. The album begins with two absolute classics right out of the gate, One Way or Another & Weep In Silence. The former is a cleverly plodding charmer sung by W ... (read more)

Report this review (#71146) | Posted by leathermusic | Sunday, March 5, 2006 | Review Permanlink

3 stars "High and Mighty" is together with "Sweet Freedom" the least interesting album in the 70's Uriah Heep catalogue. But it is still good enough to escape the 'fans only'-rating. There are some good and interesting songs on this album. But there are some generic rock'n'roll songs that weights this ... (read more)

Report this review (#39341) | Posted by | Wednesday, July 13, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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