Heaven: (Band)

Origin: Sydney, Australia

Genre: Heavy metal, hard rock

Web Site:  BMusic article on Heaven

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Heaven is a heavy metal band from Sydney, Australia that formed in 1980. The band recorded three albums and toured throughout the United States during the 1980s. The group’s original style was similar to that of AC/DC but in later years went in a more commercial heavy metal direction along the lines of Judas Priest.

The band was originally formed in Adelaide under the name Fat Lip, which featured Fryer, bassist Laurie Marlow, formerly of Almost Human, and drummer Joe Turtur. Soon after the band moved to Sydney, AC/DC singer Bon Scott died in London and some unsubstantiated reports suggested that band was considering Fryer as a replacement. Fryer left Fat Lip and returned to Adelaide but he was never called upon to audition. Once back in Sydney, Fat Lip now consisted of Fryer and Marlow, Theo Kats on drums and guitarist Bradford Kelly, formerly of John Swan’s band Swanee. Kats soon left to join a band called Europe and Turtur returned to the group. John Haese was also added as rhythm guitarist. Shortly afterward, Fat Lip came to the attention of Michael Browning, a Sydney music industry figure who had managed AC/DC in the 1970s and had just started a new record label called DeLuxe, to which he had signed INXS. Fat Lip began recording an album for DeLuxe, but changed its name to Heaven during the sessions. The album, Twilight of Mischief, was preceded in late 1981 by a single, “Fantasy”. A second single, “In the Beginning” became the album’s title track when it was released by RCA in the US under that name.

John Haese left Heaven after the album was released and was replaced by Mick Cocks, formerly of Rose Tattoo. The band then went to the United States and found some success there, particularly on the West Coast and toured with Mötley Crüe and Dio. They recorded a second album for RCA during 1983 called Where Angels Fear to Tread. The album was supported by a single, “Rock School” and featured guest contributions from Ronnie James Dio, Lita Ford and Glenn Hughes,and Eddy Hawkins. After this, Cocks and Turtur left Heaven.

Former AC/DC bass player Mark Evans and John Lalor were brought in as replacements (possibly the only time Evans would feature as a guitarist) but the relationship ended almost immediately and Heaven disbanded.

In 1984, Fryer recruited drummer Tommy Dimitroff and returned to America to reform Heaven, this time with ex-Talas guitarist Mitch Perry and New York musician Mark Cunningham who had most recently been in a band called Cathedral. Dennis Feldman, formerly of Ram-Jam and The Michael Schenker group also joined the new Heaven line-up on bass and the group recorded the album. Columbia A&R man, Mason Muner, signed the band and recruited Paul O’Neill to produce and co-write the album Knocking on Heaven’s Door. The album’s title track was a heavy metal cover of the Bob Dylan song. However prior to completion, Muner was replaced by a new A&R representative and Columbia brought in another mixer. Tours with Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Kiss and Mötley Crüe followed.

After this, Fryer moved to Texas and forged ahead keeping the Heaven name alive with local talent such as Scott Howe, John Paul Dutton, Rodger “bam-bam” Weiss, Bryan Cameron and Timi Heiser. Allan Fryer, Nye Jones, Scott Cothren and Steve Dainhart recorded Time For Terror. The players from Austin Texas also recorded on the Mötley Crüe Tribute CD Home Sweet Home and was the number one voted song on the CD. The song was written by Allan Fryer and Tommy Lee and dedicated to Vince Neils’ daughter, Skylar Neil who died from cancer. All the CD proceeds went to the The Skylar Neil Memorial Fund.


In 1985 Heaven opened up for Christian metal band Stryper in Corpus Christi Texas.

Kelly, Marlow, Fryer and Haese reformed Heaven in Sydney in 1998 to play two shows, with Theo Kats and Joe Turtur alternating behind the drum kit. After this, Kats and Marlow started working on new material with guitarist Kevin Pratt. Pratt had featured in Sydney bands Boss and BB Steal during the 1980s, recording an album with each. The collaboration was designed as a new Heaven album but Fryer returned home to Texas and the project ran out of money. Yet another reformation happened in 2001 however, when Fryer, Marlow, Kats and Pratt recruited guitarist Ross Flynn and toured as Heaven in support of Judas Priest’s Australian tour. Immediately after these shows, Fryer again returned to America.

Death of Allan Fryer

On 4 June 2015 it was announced that Heaven’s vocalist, Allan Fryer, had died after a long battle with cancer.

Jackson Kelly guitar

During the band’s initial period of success, guitarist Bradford Kelly designed the Jackson Kelly guitar for US guitar makers Jackson. Kelly died in 2004 after being ill for some time.

Current members

Rowan Robertson – Lead guitar
John Haese – Rhythm guitar
Laurie Marlow – Bass guitar
Joe Turtur – Drums

Past members

Allan Fryer – Lead vocals (died 2015)
Rodger “bam-bam” Weiss – Drums
Bradford Kelly – Lead guitar (died 2004)
Mark Cunningham – Rhythm guitar
Mitch Perry – Lead guitar, keyboards
Mark Evans – Lead guitar
Mick Cocks – Rhythm guitar (died 2009)
John Haese – Rhythm guitar
Jeff Burns – Guitar
Bobby Enloe – Guitar
Dave Anthony – Drums
Matt Stole – Bass
Robert Hinerman – Guitar, keyboards
Dennis Feldman – Bass guitar
Tony Griffith – Guitar
Ronnie Zade – Drums, backing vocals
Joe Turtur – Drums
Robbie Hannah – Drums
Bruno Renzella – Drums
Tommy Dimitroff – Drums
Jasper Lynam – Drums


Studio albums

Twilight of Mischief – 1982
Bent – 1982 (Released as Twilight of Mischief in Australia)
Where Angels Fear to Tread – 1983
Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door – 1985

Live albums
Live in Texas – King Biscuit Flower Hour – 1984