Disaster Records 1984
I made a quick run up to Sonic Boom on Tuesday night to finally check out their vinyl selection, and I made off with 2 records - so it wasn't a total bust. They have too many new Black Metal and Stoner Rock LPs for my taste, but what they did have was this gem by BACKWATER. I'd never heard of BACKWATER, and that's kinda surprising cuz they had the whole MOTORHEAD, VENOM, BULLDOZER, TANK kinda thing going on... and these guys could hold their own against all the aforementioned bands... except MOTORHEAD of course... and TANK. They sound most like BULLDOZER (with less inspired vocals), 'cept the production is better. Don't get me wrong, the production is still raw and gritty, and the playing is fast and loose, but the sound has more balls than say "The Final Separation" (or any subsequent BULLDOZER record) did. I can only think that the stoopid band name and kinda lame NWOBHM style album artwork held them back, cuz otherwise these guys are fucking great, and deserved more attention. I'm not gonna break down every track, but stand outs for me are "The Black Knight And The Holy Sword", the drum'n'bass intro on "The Creed" kills me, and the plodding "Witchchaser" is a cross between PILEDRIVER's "Witch Hunt" and BULLDOZER's "Insurrection Of The Living Damned"... yeah it's that good! Don't hesitate, just download this bad boy.
DOWNLOAD: Backwater - Revelation.rar (62.23 MB)
Disaster Records 1984
Hold Up Records 1986
I downloaded this from a newsgroup a few years ago, and was so completely blown away that I immediately started searching for a copy of it. It was another few years before I found one on eBay, and so the bidding war began. There was no way I wasn't winning the auction... price was no object... and in the end it was mine. I forget what I ended up paying (for some reason $80 sticks in my mind), but whatever it was, it was money well spent. This is pure MOTORHEAD worship at it's finest, and each song gives a nod to 'HEAD in one way or another, with "No, It Isn't" being the most obvious (it's a total "Stay Clean" knock-off). "Head Raver" is the stand out on this record... so much so that it makes my Greatest Songs Of All Time list. The drums have a real Tommy Lee vibe to 'em, the main riff is fucking awesome, and the whole thing is just so goddamn pounding! Take a listen to "Head Raver" (but I suggest you just download the whole thing). The production is dirty, the playing manic, and the surface noise is almost as loud as the music... isn't that the way it's supposed to be?
DOWNLOAD: Zadkiel - Hell's Bomber.rar (21.19 MB)
P.S. Apparently this was released on CD in 2006 with at least 1 extra track and a few video clips!
P.P.S. Just got the ZADKIEL CD in the mail today from Record Boy in Japan. There's 6 tracks, 2 more than the record, and 4 video clips... one of which is a live version of "Head Raver" - it's fucking amazing! In total there's 5 songs that I'd never heard before, so it was well worth the $!
Noise Records 1985
Oh my fuck I love this record! It's pretty much THE perfect Metal album... it's got it all: soaring high register vocals (a'la Rob Halford), tasty riffs, great production, lyrics about Metal, rockin' hard, barbaric hordes, and breaking the speed limit, and if that's not enough, the band is tighter than a rat's ass stretched over a rain barrel. I borrowed this cassette from a guy in college cuz he knew I was into old Metal, and at the time I only checked out a couple of songs - I was prolly too busy listening to the new BIOHAZARD CD or some other similarly awful shit. Now that my head is no longer up my ass I can fully appreciate the genius of this record. Overnight (literally) Ralf Scheepers has become my favourite vocalist. Yeah he sounds exactly like Halford, but goddamn! if you're gonna sound like someone, who better? After a little investigating I discovered that after TP (that's TYRAN PACE... not the other TP) he was in GAMMA RAY (I always thought it was Kai Hansen), and now he's the vocalist in PRIMAL FEAR (a band I've never heard, but am looking forward to). It's impossible for me to pick a favourite track, cuz every one's a killer... even the one called "Wheels Of Love", which for obvious reasons I assumed would be total shite. There's a bunch of unnecessary explosion sound effects peppered throughout the entire album, which at first was kinda annoying (cuz they scared me), but this album is so far beyond reproach that now I love them too! Simply put, Metal doesn't get any better than this.
DOWNLOAD: Tyran Pace - Long Live Metal.rar (60.27 MB)
Long Song Records 1987
This is the first review from the pile of stuff I picked up at Ric's Collectibles the other day, and despite the name, it is very hard to take this record seriously. DEAD SERIOS are basically the Metal equivalent of THE ELECTRIC CHAIRS. Both bands have cornball singers (Dead Lee Serios kinda sounds like Wayne/Jayne County to boot), both are pastiches of their respective genres, and most surprisingly, both are somewhat entertaining. Dead Lee and his ragtag group of goofball guitar-slingers play sub-moronic Metal that by 1987 had already been resting in peace for quite some time. Remember the embarrassingly bad metal bands that played your highschool battle of the bands? Now you can relive those memories with every listen of this record.
DOWNLOAD: Dead Serios - Who's Your Buddy.rar (44.4 MB)
I'd been jonesing to buy some vinyl for a few weeks, and I finally got the chance on Saturday. It took well over an hour for a mildly crippled Matt and myself to make the trip from downtown to Ric's Collectibles in Scarborough, and the whole time we were driving I was thinking "This better be worth the fucking drive". I was not disappointed. After only sorting through 10 records in the Metal bin I knew it was gonna be an expensive trip. Ric's must have the most impressive selection of used Metal vinyl in the city (I've never checked out Sonic Boom, but there's no way they have these kinda gems). I had a stack of at least 20 albums that I wanted to buy, and had to weed 'em down to a number that I could afford (Ric's is not cheap!). I finally decided on 7 records: DEAD SERIOS, T.N.T., SINFUL (amazing album cover!), ATTILA, THRASHER (Carl Cannedy rules), MAX HAVOC LTD., and TYRAN PACE. I'll post reviews of each of 'em when I get around to actually listening to 'em. Another trip is tentatively planned for this weekend so I can pick up some of the ones I left behind... I hate thinking that someone else might get 'em before me. Matt hit it off with the staff at Ric's, and became fast friends with the talkative guy behind the counter. I see some Spiderman costume parties in their collective futures.
Me, Stitchy, and Clubber were kickin' it old school last night at the MAIDEN show (is there any other way?), and as you can see, we had the best seats in the house. No matter, MAIDEN killed it! I got chills when they broke into set opener "Aces High", and it was awesome to see so many people singing along to every song. Stitchy and I marvelled at how great some of the solos sounded (one of Adrian's in particular with the SG - can't remember which song). I've got to admit that my knowledge of IRON MAIDEN kinda drops off after "Number Of The Beast", and I don't know anything after "Powerslave", so there were a bunch of songs that I could've done without ("Heaven Can Wait", "Fear Of The Dark", "Can I Play With Madness"), but "Wasted Years" and "Moonchild" were both amazing. I took some video on my camera that I'm gonna post on youtube when I get the chance ("Revelations", and Eddie on stage during "Iron Maiden"). We were far from the stage, so it's shaky and kinda looks like the Zapruder film, but whatever, it's fuckin' MAIDEN!
From the album: Lunar Womb (Hellhound 1991)
There aren't too many songs that I would consider to be amongst the greatest of all time based solely upon their lyrics... but "No Blame" by THE OBSESSED is one of the few. And really, this song makes it upon the strength of only a couple of lines: "I'm gonna shine my shoes on your face for... THE NAME OF ROCK 'N' ROLL!!!!". It's pretty much the most bad-ass thing I've ever heard, and if there's somebody that could (and would) do it, it's Wino. Check out the picture, I wouldn't fuck with that dude in a month of Sundays. The song itself is 1:25 of straight ahead, unrelelenting Punk Rock, and when it's over, you kinda feel like Wino has kicked the shit outta you. Musically there are much better songs by THE OBSESSED, but there's just something about this one that gets me stoked. Check it out here.
From the album: Hova Lett... (Artisjus 1983)
In 1984, my sister and I gathered up our cash and sent it away to Reach Out International Records in the Big Apple. I got the BAD BRAINS cassette, NEW YORK THRASH compilation, and WORLD CLASS PUNK (I forget what my sister got... prolly EINSTURZENDE NEUBAUTEN or something). At the time I had a penchant for foreign punk bands that didn't sing in English, and the WORLD CLASS PUNK cassette was chock-full of 'em. My favourite track was by an Hungarian band credited as HOVA-LETT NAGYFERO BIKINI. Well it turns out that the band is actually called NAGY FERO & BIKINI, and their 1983 album is called "Hova Lett...". It took me almost 20 years, but I finally found a copy of this record on eBay, and I couldn't pass it up. NF&B are not really a Punk band, as there's elements of ska, jazz, fusion, rock, metal, new wave, and traditional Hungarian folk (at least that's what I assume it is) all mixed into their sound. This is a bizarre record that truly defies classification. The song that's featured on WORLD CLASS PUNK ("Come Off It!!") is also the best song on this album... which is a bummer, cuz I was hoping for 13 more killer songs in the same vein. It's a cross between punk (Nagy Fero's vocals), metal (double bass drums throughout, phenomenal guitar solo), and some kinda fucked-up Japanese-sounding electro-cyber shit (check the drum/vocal breakdown). This song still kills me almost 25 years later! The rest of the album isn't total shit (as I had first thought), and in fact, after ripping it today, it's beginning to grow on me. The guitar player's jazz tinged solos are fantastic, and the ultra-modern Devo-esque stuff at the end of Side 2 is truly bizarre. Take a listen to "Come Off It!!" and try to tell me this shit doesn't rule!
Roadrunner Records 1984
This is an album that I've passed over in the record bins literally hundreds of times. It seemed to be one of those records that was in every store, and I never ever considered giving it a chance. Back in the day I assumed this would be dated and boring... and I was kinda right. In 1987 this woulda sounded totally out of date compared to bands like WHIPLASH, KREATOR, VOIVOD, etc. Today however, bands that sit on the fence between Metal and Hard Rock are pretty much all that I care about, and this album is a perfect example of that. The songs are catchy and melodic giving this record some commercial appeal, but they`re still heavy enough to be truly Metal. The song that made me realize the greatness of this record is `Bleeding Moon`. The chorus kills, and the moody verses set it up perfectly. This is followed up by the equally stunning `Demon Eye Woman` which starts with a Van Halen-ish opening riff that leads to another great chorus: "Demon eye woman - makes you gonna scream LOUD!" Fucking brilliant. Damn, I wish I had bought this one back in the day.