[published]: 1984, June 8
[in]: Milwaukee Journal
[article]: Observations
[by]: Thor Christensen

For 21 years, Geoge Criston made his home in Milwaukee. For the last year and a half, he's called the road his home as lead vocalist of a band of heavy-touring hard rockers called Kick Axe.

"I haven't really had a home since I left Milwaukee because we play every night. But I love it, love packing the bags for the next city," said a raspy-voiced Criston, who'll get a chance to return home when the group performs at 11 p.m. Sunday at The Palms, 2616 W State St.

Kick Axe, whose style of rock Criston describes as "very melodic heavy metal," has been club-hopping in Canada for the past six years. The rest of the band - bassist Victor Langen, drummer Vice Bryan Gillstrom and guitarists Larry Gillstrom and Raymond Harvey - all hail from Canada.

The band recently had a minor role in the movie "Up The Creek" and the song on the movie's soundtrack LP (a version of Humble Pie's "30 Days in the Hole"), and is continuing to make headway on the rock scene. A debut record, "Vices", has been released by CBS-affiliated Pasha Records, the group has just landed a contract to be the opening act for Judas Priest's American tour beginning later this month and plans have been made to shoot videos of two of their songs in New York.

Even if Kick Axe has yet to make a dent in the scheme of heavy metal, the band has been studying some of the genre's classic artists. "Our real influences are Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple, Bad Company and early Queen," Criston said.

Tickets for Sunday night's show available at the Palms box office, are $4 in advance and $5 50 the night of the show. Doors open at 8 p.m. and Screamer takes stage at 10 p.m.