LIGHTNING FIRE hailed from the Wasmes / Mons area and started out in early 1985 when vocalist Tony Carlino (ex PREDATOR) hooked up with former NH3 members Oriano Spadari & Roberto Latini (guitars), Walter Spadari (bass) and Pierre Brion (drums). On March 15th 1985 drummer Pierre was replaced by Dominique De Leener (ex BURST). On April 2nd 1985 guitarist Oriano left LIGHTNING FIRE, only to become the band's roadie. A suitable replacement was found in Richard Drachman, who joined LIGHTNING FIRE on July 3rd 1985.

Shows with the likes of ASTAROTH and WHITE NIGHT followed, and the band also participated in the Metal Race battle of the bands in Zottegem, in November of 1985. LIGHTNING FIRE survived the semi finals (headlined by Holland's VANDENBERG) and thus advanced to the final at the ATC venue on November 15th, which was headlined by Ireland's MAMA'S BOYS. In the end LIGHTNING FIRE turned out to be third on the night, preceeded by winners IRON GREY and runners-up EXPLORER, but ahead of CYCLONE.

As a result of their Metal Race participation, LIGHTNING FIRE were also included on the Metal Race compilation LP that surfaced via Roadrunner Records in early 1986. The band were offered an album deal with said Dutch label as well. On March 3rd 1986 LIGHTNING FIRE played at La Gaieté in Frasnes-Lez-Buissenal, after BLACK KNIGHT and prior to RITUAL.

A second demo did surface later on in 1986. This new demo resulted in interest from Steamhammer / SPV as well, but since the band was still tied to Roadrunner nothing ever became concrete.

Some six months later LIGHTNING FIRE finally managed to escape from the deal with Roadrunner Records and recorded another demo. By that time LIGHTNING FIRE had become a quartet, as Richard Drachman had left again in the meantime. Soon after the release of this new demo the band had to sack guitarist Roberto Latini, as he was slowing the band down. Which was the ideal moment for Richard 'Ritchie' Drachman to return to the band. Rumour also has it that he turned down an offer from Swiss hardrockers KROKUS one day ... Anyway, a second guitarist was soon added to the new LIGHTNING FIRE as well : Serge Compère (ex BURST).

On January 17th 1987 LIGHTNING FIRE was part of the Battle Of Death festival line-up (which also included BLACK SHEPHERD, EXPLORER, LIVING DEATH and TARGET) at De Kriekelaar in Schaarbeek. Due to legal problems with former guitarist Roberto Latini LIGHTNING FIRE were forced to change their name, and therefore they were known as CXT NINE from September 1987 onwards ...


1985 : (Demo) {Antichrist, Savage, Atomic War}

1986 : Atomic War & Antichrist released on Metal Race compilation LP (Roadrunner)

1986 : (Demo) {Vengeance Of A Virgin, God's Arena, Black Power, When The Wolves Are Singing, Predator, Lightning Fire}

1986 : Lightning Fire (demo) {Legalise H-M, Savage, Vengeance Of A Virgin, Predator, Gods' Arena, When The Wolves Are Singing, Rats' Attack, The Claws Of Night, The End}

Consulted people


First posted

December 19th 2006

Latest adjustment

October 7th 2007

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