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With their brutal, simple riffs and aggressive, fast tempos, Accept was one of the top metal bands of the early '80s, and a major influence on the development of thrash. Led by the unique vocal stylings of screeching banshee Udo Dirkschneider, the band forged an instantly recognizable sound and was notorious as one of the decade's fiercest live acts. Despite recording two of the best heavy metal albums of the decade in Restless and Wild and Balls to the Wall, Accept remained too heavy and extreme for American audiences to embrace — even when they tried to tone down their act with more melodic songs. Ultimately having conquered the rest of the world, but with their career stalled in the U.S., Accept fell apart, and by the time they reunited years later there was nothing left for them to say.
Vocalist Udo Dirkschneider formed Accept in his hometown of Solingen, Germany, in the early '70s, but it wasn't until quite a few years later that the band settled on a somewhat stable lineup, including guitarists Wolf Hoffman and Gerhard Wahl, bassist Peter Baltes, and drummer Frank Friedrich. A well-received performance at the Rock Amrhein Festival in 1976 brought them national attention, and they finally obtained a recording contract after replacing Wahl with guitarist Jorg Fischer two years later. Issued in 1979, their eponymous debut was badly produced, featured mostly subpar songwriting, and did absolutely nothing for the group. But with the arrival of new drummer Stefan Kaufmann prior to 1980s much-improved I'm a Rebel, the band had the final ingredient they were looking for, and their popularity began growing by leaps and bounds.