Combat Records 1984
I remember seeing this album cover when I was a kid, and for some reason, over the years, it's really stuck with me - when I saw it yesterday I recognized it immediately, and had to buy it. This is the kinda record I never woulda bought when I was younger, but the aesthetic is so striking that I couldn't pass it up again. The guy on the cover is a weird combination of Billy Idol and Michael Monroe, and there's a topless chick whom he's just knocked out (what!?!). Maybe he didn't actually clock her, it coulda been a technical knock out... who knows. Whatever's going on, it looks sleazy enough. TKO make me wonder why commercial Metal in the 80s had to be so extremely poncey... cuz these guys are commercial, but still very heavy, still Metal, and infinitely better than any commercially viable hair Metal band of the era. In Your Face is a perfect balance of Hard Rock that retains some Metal bite, and every single song is well written, catchy, and memorable. This is a truly great album... sometimes you really can judge a book by it's cover. Download now! Really... I'll eat my shorts if you don't love this one.
DOWNLOAD: TKO-InYourFace.rar (71.72 MB)
Combat Records 1984
Leonard Post VFW
2450 Walden Avenue
I've been wanting to check out a record show in Buffalo for a few years now, and today I finally got my chance. Thankfully it happened before the new passport law is in place, and crossing the border becomes a bigger pain-in-the-ass. Anyways, there wasn't a lot of Metal, but what I found was really good quality, and pretty rare at times. There's a store in Rochester (well Webster really) called Heavy Metal Records, and they had a booth set up. Great to see some one exclusively selling Metal... I didn't buy anything from 'em cuz they mainly had CDs, t-shirts, and bootleg DVDs, but still it was nice to see. OK, so here's today's finds:
• MANDATOR "Initial Velocity" LP: Fuck yeah!!!! And for only $30 (actually even less, cuz I bought so much from this guy that he gave me a pretty good deal). Coulda gone home happy after finding this one.
• TARAMIS "Queen Of Thieves" LP: Metal Blade record I'd never seen or even heard of.
• DED ENGINE "Hold A Grudge" LP: Still haven't listened to the DE record I got at the Toronto show... hope they don't suck.
• STEELER "Steeler" LP: Yngwie and Ron Keel... has the potential to be both great and a steaming pile.
• WILD DOGS "Reign Of Terror" LP: Didn't love their first record, but someone suggested that this one was gooder.
• LONDON "Don't Cry Wolf" LP: I was really stoked to find this one! Yeah they're ridiculous, but it's a damn good record.
• OZ "III Warning" LP: Another great find! I don't think it's as monumental as "Fire In The Brain", but I'm sure it still rules.
• DRIVE "Characters In Time" LP: Never heard of 'em... might not even be a Metal band for I know.
• HALLOWS EVE "Death And Insanity" LP: I've never been a big fan of HALLOWS EVE, but I decided to give this one a shot anyways.
• LIEGE LORD "Burn To My Touch" LP: Mo Metal mo problems.
• ARTCH "Another Return To Church Hill" LP: I remember these guys sucking balls, but it was only $3.
• TKO "In Your Face" LP: Awesome album cover and band photos. For some reason the whole package is really appealing to me, and at $2 how could I go wrong!?
There were some other cool records that I wanted to grab, but I had to save a few dollars for Mighty Taco... and I'm still regretting that decision... gotta run!
Bootleg 2008 (I'm guessing)
I'm a bit tipsy right now, so it could just be the booze, but this record is fucking killing me! Three of DISMEMBER's early demos are compiled on this gorgeous coloured vinyl bootleg. 1988's Dismembered demo starts off with the magnificent "Deathevokation" (as heard on the Hymns Of The Dead cassette) and carries on in much the same vein - dingy recording, kinda sloppy playing, and heavily affected and effected vocals. Fucking awesome! DISMEMBER's second demo from '89 is better and even heavier. Finally the Reborn In Blasphemy demo (1991) is heavier still, and kills everything. It's got the full-on Sunlight treatment, and it crushes! Really really great stuff! My only complaint about this record is that they've included an '89 rehearsal in the track listing that's not on the record - a sneaky way to make ya think you're getting more tracks than you really are. A small gripe considering how great what you do get is. Decision: not the booze - this record really is as good as I think it is... hammered or not.
DOWNLOAD: Dismember-CompleteDemos.rar (74.42 MB)
Burning Heart Records 1991
I cringe at the first hint of a slapped bass string, and become nauseated when in earshot of someone popping on the bass... maybe it was OK for Bootsy Collins or whoever, but that's about it. I was shocked and dismayed to find that the slap bass pandemic that swept North America in the early 90's also affected our Scandinavian friends. Even the ones who recorded at Sunlight Studios for christsake! With the exception of the brief bass misstep at the beginning of "Dance Tarantella" Concealed Hallucinations is a pretty awesome record. Sounding very similar to Beneath The Remains era SEPULTURA, KAJZUROL ably straddle the fence between Thrash and Death Metal, and are tight as all hell. Not as crushing as ENTOMBED or GRAVE, but more technical with a touch of hardcore... but that might just be because of the CRUDE S.S. cover. Good shit!
DOWNLOAD: Kazjurol-ConcealedHallucinations.rar (18.39 MB)
Mausoleum Records 1984
This record's got a huge label on the cover stating that HAZZARD features ex-ACCEPT guitarist Herman Frank. Not much of a selling point really, yeah he played on some classic records (Restless And Wild and Balls To The Wall), but I doubt that that information had people rushing out to their local record shop and queueing up for the latest HAZZARD record. Cuz of that sticker I expected this to sound like a decent facsimile of Frank's previous band, and the riffs are pure ACCEPT, but the singer ruins the whole thing with his bland, lackluster delivery. Making things worse are the big radio-friendly choruses and crappy vocal melodies - just wait 'til you hear the chorus on "Killer" ("why oh why" is it so terrible?). It's too bad that the singing is such shit, because the riffs are excellent, and the songs coulda been great with the right vocalist. Unfortunately this combination results in a boring record that certainly won't be getting any more spins from me.
DOWNLOAD: Hazzard-Hazzard.rar (65.83 MB)
I usually ignore MOTORHEAD bootlegs cuz they either contain songs that I have countless versions of on re-issue and rarity CDs, or cuz they're live shows that I couldn't care less about. This one, however, caught my eye cuz it's made up of BBC recordings (as the title suggests!?!) that I knew I didn't have copies of, and had never heard before. The sound quality is so good that it makes me think that these are probably available on CD, maybe even officially, but who knows (keeping up with every "new" MOTORHEAD release is something that I gave up on years ago). The '78 John Peel tracks are fantastic and on their own make this worth downloading, but add to that some Ace Of Spades era tracks (not sure if these are from '81 or '82 - the info is misleading) and a couple from the mid-80's Orgasmatron line-up and it all makes for a top notch collection.
DOWNLOAD: Motorhead-BBCSessions.rar (88.02 MB)
Devil's Records/Banzai Records 1984
I expected these 2 records to be identical 'cept for the different vocal tracks, but the English and French versions of Metamorphosis sound completely different. The French version (Métamorphose) is brighter and frankly much better sounding than the dark, muddy, drum-heavy English pressing. The fantastic guitar playing is front and center on Métamorphose, while you'll be struggling to hear the same guitar runs and leads on the English copy. Pretty weird. Different mastering? Different mix? The vinyl pressing itself? Who knows, but they are very different to be sure. The songs themselves are essentially the same, and every one's a killer - which is exactly what I've come to expect from a SORTILEGE record. I wish that all bands were as monumentally great as these
guys cuz it would make buying old Metal records a lot easier... they would all rule! SORTILEGE impart a sense of majesty (hence the song?) and weighty seriousness into everything they do, and thus I take them more seriously than most bands of the era. If you only had to download one of these, I'd definitely recommend the French version. Not only does it sound superior, but since Métamorphose is sung in the band's native tongue, it sounds more natural too. But download 'em both and compare for yourself.
DOWNLOAD (en Français): Sortilege-Metamorphose.rar (66.18 MB)
DOWNLOAD (en Anglais): Sortilege-Metamorphosis.rar (65.61 MB)