RUNNING WILD - 1980s Vinyl Album Cover Gallery & Discography Information

"Running Wild" were a popular and influential German heavy metal band, formed in 1976 in Hamburg. They were part of the German heavy/speed/power metal scene to emerge in the early to mid 1980s. The band has carved its niche in the metal world as the first "pirate metal" band, a theme which took off with the release of "Under Jolly Roger" in 1987 (thus abandoning the Satanic imagery of their earlier work). Although the earlier releases contained Satanic themes and imagery, the guitar player of the band was then a Preacher (aka Gerald Warnecke) who is now a vicar in Cologne. On April 17, 2009 Rolf announced that "Running Wild" had split-up.

RUNNING WILD Banner photo

On the discography listing below you will find RUNNING WILD vinyl records released during the 1970s and 1980s. For each record you will have the record company's catalognr, album title, year and country of release. Complete information for each record can be viewed by selecting the corresponding links. Albums have been ordered in ascending alphabetical order of the album titles.

Running Wild Band Information:

Running Wild is a heavy metal band that originated in Hamburg, Germany, in 1976. The band is known for its unique sound, which combines elements of traditional heavy metal with pirate-themed lyrics and imagery. Over the course of their career, Running Wild has released 16 studio albums, several live albums, and numerous EPs and singles, making them one of the most prolific and enduring bands in the heavy metal genre.

The founding members of Running Wild were guitarist and vocalist Rolf Kasparek, bassist Stephan Boriss, and drummer Wolfgang Hagemann. The band's early sound was heavily influenced by the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, which was popular in the late 1970s and early 1980s. However, it wasn't until the release of their third album, "Under Jolly Roger," in 1987, that the band fully embraced their pirate theme and began to gain widespread recognition.

"Under Jolly Roger" marked a turning point for Running Wild, both musically and lyrically. The album featured catchy, anthemic choruses, blistering guitar solos, and lyrics that celebrated the freedom and rebellion of pirates. The band's signature "yarr" chant, which is still a staple of their live shows, was first introduced on this album. The album was a commercial success in Europe and helped to establish Running Wild as one of the leading bands in the German heavy metal scene.

Following the success of "Under Jolly Roger," Running Wild continued to release a string of successful albums throughout the 1980s and 1990s. These albums included "Port Royal" (1988), "Death or Glory" (1989), "Blazon Stone" (1991), and "Pile of Skulls" (1992). Each album featured a mix of fast, aggressive tracks and slower, more epic songs, with lyrics that often revolved around historical events or legends. The band's live shows were known for their energetic performances, which often included stage props and pyrotechnics.

In the early 2000s, Running Wild experienced a decline in popularity, as the heavy metal genre fell out of favor with the mainstream music industry. The band's 2002 album, "The Brotherhood," was criticized for its lack of originality and failure to capture the energy of their earlier work. Despite this, Running Wild continued to release albums throughout the decade, including "Rogues en Vogue" (2005), "Shadowmaker" (2012), and "Resilient" (2013).

In 2009, Rolf Kasparek announced that Running Wild would be going on an indefinite hiatus, citing personal reasons. However, the band reunited in 2011 for a series of live shows and subsequently released new material. In 2020, the band released their sixteenth studio album, "Blood on Blood," which was well-received by fans and critics alike.

Running Wild's influence on the heavy metal genre cannot be overstated. Their unique blend of heavy metal and pirate themes has inspired countless bands, both in Europe and around the world. The band's commitment to their image and their high-energy live performances have made them a favorite among metal fans. Despite their ups and downs over the years, Running Wild has remained true to their roots, and their legacy as one of the greatest heavy metal bands of all time is secure. 

Riding the Waves of Heavy Metal: Exploring Running Wild's Epic Vinyl Discography

RUNNING WILD - Branded and Exiled 12" Vinyl LP
RUNNING WILD - Branded and Exiled  album front cover vinyl record

"Branded and Exiled" (1985), Running Wild's pivotal album, marked the debut of guitarist Majk Moti and defined the Pirate Metal genre. With Rolf Kasparek's visionary songwriting, the album blended traditional heavy metal with maritime themes, unleashing tales of rebellion and adventure.

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RUNNING WILD - Death or Glory 12" Vinyl LP
RUNNING WILD - Death or Glory album front cover vinyl record

"Death or Glory" is a Pirate Power metal album by German band RUNNING WILD. One of their most successful releases, it contains the concert favourites "Riding the Storm" and "Bad to the Bone"

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RUNNING WILD - Gates To Purgatory 12" Vinyl LP
RUNNING WILD - Gates To Purgatory  album front cover vinyl record

Running Wild's debut album,"Gates to Purgatory," released in 1984, marked a pivotal moment in heavy metal history. Predating their famed pirate themes, the album delved into satanic influences, creating a raw and rebellious sound. With haunting lyrics and iconic cover art, the album set the stage for Running Wild

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RUNNING WILD - Port Royal 12" Vinyl LP
RUNNING WILD - Port Royal album front cover vinyl record

"Port Royal" by Running Wild, a landmark in heavy metal, emerged as the epitome of Pirate Metal. Released in 1988, on a 12" vinyl LP, the album marked a deliberate shift for the German band. Meticulously crafted in collaboration with Noise International, it blended ferocious riffs and anthemic tracks

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RUNNING WILD - Ready For Boarding 12" Vinyl LP
RUNNING WILD - Ready For Boarding  album front cover vinyl record

"Ready For Boarding" by Running Wild, a live album recorded in Munich, Germany, captures the band's electrifying stage presence. Released on a 12" vinyl LP by Noise Records, it features a rare track, "Purgatory," dedicated to the PMRC. The album, with its powerful live performance and bold musical statements

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RUNNING WILD - Under Jolly Roger (Canadian and German Releases) 12" Vinyl LP
RUNNING WILD - Under Jolly Roger (Canadian and German Releases) album front cover vinyl record

Label , Year , Country

"Running Wild" is one of the German power metal bands to emerge in the early/mid 1980s (along with Helloween, Gamma Ray, Rage, Blind Guardian, Grave Digger, EdGuy, etc). The band has carved its niche in the metal world as the first "pirate metal" band, a theme which took off with the release of this album

- Under Jolly Roger (1987, Canada) - Under Jolly Roger (1987, Germany)