To say Wicked Lady were an ultimate cult band is almost an understatement -- the U.K. power trio's contemporary reputation was derived solely from a small if committed live fan base. The Axeman Cometh, with original bassist Bob Jeffries, covering selections from 1969 to 1972, comes from tapes that lead figure Martin Weaver freely admitted in 2012 were done just to keep clear how the songs were performed. Part of the appeal lies in how good everything sounds -- for basement recordings by a band with no resources, even the earliest songs stand up pretty well. Vocals are a bit distanced at times, but both the basic riffing and the enthusiastic if unremarkable drumming are clear enough. That the trio was a product of its time is perfectly evident, but for all the heavy riffing the band is playing with, there are moments of individual flair, with Weaver's own work sounding especially inspired, mixing yank-'em, crank-'em tendencies with solid senses of mood while never losing sight of the core rhythm work. While songs like "Living on the Edge" can sometimes feel a bit draggy, nothing ever slows down, and the fairly standard arrangements always give way to a little moment of Weaver glory at some point or another. The opening "Run the Night" features a bit of frenetic soloing from Weaver that could be ahead of its time, and nearly everything else has a similar moment of glory. If "War Cloud" sounds more like a bit of moody folkiness filtered through a touch of Deep Purple, the sentiments aren't far removed from Black Sabbath. But the instrumental title track, with Weaver pulling off some double-tracked solos careening beautifully over the central chug, is pretty close to its own beast.