Sunday, January 19, 2020

Bootleg On The Wall

Last year, I picked up the vinyl for AC/DC's Fly On The Wall album. It had been a while since I'd really listened to that record, but I was interested in growing my AC/DC collection, so I grabbed it when I found it in the used bins at a great price. I didn't expect to have such a strong reaction to it, but man, revisiting that album had me falling in love with it all over again, and surprisingly I was giving it repeat spins.

The Fly On The Wall tour was the first time that I saw AC/DC live, and it was one of the earlier concerts that I had gone to. Revisiting the album had me all nostalgic for those days, so when I discovered a bootleg album from that tour, I didn't hesitate to grab a copy.

There are a lot of bootlegs showing up these days that are old radio broadcasts, and this AC/DC boot is one of those. The sound quality is excellent, but it doesn't capture the full setlist, and around five songs are missing here. That's okay though, it still captures the three songs from Fly On The Wall that AC/DC were playing on this tour, and those are the ones that I'm most excited to hear on this.

Nice gatefold packaging with a bit of writing on the state of AC/DC at this time...pointing out that while the band wasn't selling as many albums for Fly On The Wall, the band was still selling out stadiums everywhere. Such a great bootleg to capture that band at this time.

Friday, January 17, 2020

30 Years Out In the Cold

I'm a big fan of Judas Priest, but I've never really been obsessive about collecting their records. I have most of their albums on vinyl, and that is all that I've really ever focused on for them. However, recently I've really been tossing around the idea of taking my Priest collecting to the next level.

When Doug was recently in Japan, he picked up one of the singles for Priest, and it got me interested to take a look at the band's Discogs page...just to get an idea of what the band had released for singles, and then I suddenly fell in love with the look of all those picture sleeves...especially the Japanese ones. Since then, I can't get them out of my mind, and I really want to go on a spending spree. Money is a bit tight at this moment, so I'm really trying to pump the breaks on this right now, but man, it is a daily struggle not to start spending stupid money on this obsession. To try and keep things in check, I figured that a cheap Priest addition might help things from boiling over.

A couple years ago, Judas Priest celebrated the 30th anniversary for their Turbo album. The album was remastered and repackaged, and while the CD release included a bonus disc containing a live set from the Turbo tour, the vinyl release doesn't really offer anything new. When I first saw the Turbo 30 record in the bins at the record store back in 2017, I was tempted to buy it simply because of the alternate album art, but in the end I managed to talk myself out of it. Two years later, with a Priest obsession consuming my thoughts and eBay searches, I knew that I needed the Turbo 30 record in my collection.

I'm a huge fan of the Turbo album, but it may be one of those records that is a "time and place" thing. I got this album the summer before my 16th birthday, and while there was definitely a bit of a disappointment when I first heard it, it still became the defining album of that summer.

Give me more Judas Priest!

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

We Do Not Have A Dinosaur

A while ago, I got it in my head that I wanted to make a run at collecting all the pressings for the Slap Of Reality records. It probably wouldn't be that difficult of a task, as I don't think there is really anything all that rare, but I do love the band when I'm in the mood for that early 90's hardcore vibe. The thought, however, didn't stick for very long as I was soon chasing other things. Still, at the time it was on my mind, I did throw a few things onto my Discogs Wantlist in hopes that something may show up that I could grab for cheap.

A couple years ago, I managed to pick up the Fletch 7 inch, and since then I haven't been motivated to buy any other Slap Of Reality records. When I was recently picking up some stuff from the Armageddon Shop on Discogs, I noticed that they had a Slap Of Reality record with a great price tag, so I quickly added it to the cart. Damn. It will be good to not have this show up in my Wantlist notification anymore.

The We Do Not Have A Dinosaur 7 inch was originally released on Break Even Point, which I believe was out of Italy, so it wasn't readily available overseas to me back in 1992...in fact, I don't even know if I was aware of it until a few years ago. Prices have stayed pretty flat on this record, and 25+ years later it can still be picked up for $3.

Truth be told, this 7 inch isn't that great, and probably ranks at the bottom of the Slap Of Reality pile. The band were in a weird place at the time, and had a new singer step in before they broke up later that year. The band recorded this Dinosaur 7 inch, plus a tour pressing of a four song cassette (three of those songs ended up on this 7 inch, and the other song was on one of the split Suburban Voice 7 inches that came with an issue of the fanzine). I saw the band in Portland Maine during this tour, and can't remember if we knew the band had a new singer prior to the show, or if we discovered it at the show. Either way, it was fun to see them play even though the crowd at hardcore shows in Portland back then were the worst. Things escalated as some people started throwing things at the band while they played, and the drummer came out from behind the kit and offered to go toe to toe with any of them. Props to the band for not backing down.

Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Kiss The Go-Goat

This post wraps up the final surge of 2019 releases that I had ordered before the end of the year. Of course I've recently been reviewing some people's lists for their favorite metal albums of the year, and I'm discovering that there were a number of records that I'd forgotten about or missed completely. Time will tell if any of them are worth buying the record for, but my playlists will be full of some new music for the next couple of weeks for sure.

When I heard that Ghost were releasing a new 7 inch in 2019, I assumed it was another EP of goofy cover songs. I don't care for that side of Ghost...I mean it was cool when the band was new and they were doing cool covers from The Beatles or ABBA, but the gimmick is played out for me, and I don't care about their recorded cover songs these days. With that assumption, I was prepared to ignore the new Ghost 7 inch...and then I discovered that they were actually new Ghost songs. Okay okay. I'll give them a listen.

Officially titled Seven Inches Of Satanic Panic, this EP is great! Two songs that really capture where Ghost are today. It's not Doom like their first album, and I don't even know if you could call it metal, but for some reason, I'm really digging these songs.

Colored vinyl options for this 7 inch appear to have long sold out, and they are already commanding high price tags on Discogs. I wasn't going to throw too much money at this new Ghost record, so I'll settle for the black vinyl option.

Sunday, January 12, 2020

Haunted Icarus Visions

Another late addition from 2019 that could have possibly cracked my Top 10 for the year if I hadn't ignored this record for most of the year. While Haunt released If Icarus Could Fly back in March I wasn't really paying attention.

After Trevor William Church released a 12 inch EP plus a full length album with his band Haunt in 2018, and then released ten EPs of material with his band Beastmaker, I was feeling a little overwhelmed with it all, so when Haunt released If Icarus Could Fly in 2019, I decided to sit that one out. I did however pick up the Haunt split 7 inch with Seven Sisters, and as I was checking it out at the end of the year, I was completely hooked by the Haunt song. The song was so good that it made me go back and check out If Icarus Could Fly and I was surprised at how much I was enjoying it.

All the colored vinyl options were sold out at Shadow Kingdom Records, and while I could have spent a few extra dollars to grab one off Discogs, I decided to settle for the black vinyl.

When I was picking up the last Haunt album from Shadow Kingdom Records, I discovered that they also released another EP, Mosaic Visions, at some point last year. Does this band ever fucking stop?

Mosaic Visions contains songs that were left over from the Luminous Eyes sessions back in 2018. Not wanting to miss out on the colored vinyl option, I scooped one up while I was already in the Shadow Kingdom store. More great traditional heavy metal from Haunt!

Saturday, January 11, 2020

Legion Of The Shadow Realm

Another 2019 album that I picked up at the end of December was the new one from Legion Of The Damned, Slaves Of The Shadow Realm. While the album was released back in January last year, it took me a while to get motivated to finally pick up the vinyl for it.

I don't really listen to a lot of death metal...in fact, I'm pretty selective about which death metal bands I spend much time with...but there is something about Legion Of The Damned's brand of blackened thrash that works for me. This shit is harsh. It isn't something that is going to get repeat spins from me, but when I'm in the mood for this kind of thing, Legion Of The Damned hit the mark. Plus I tend to really like their cover art, so it is always cool to add a new album to the collection.

I went all out when ordering the last Legion Of The Damned album, Ravenous Plague, back in 2014, and I didn't hesitate to spend the extra money for the more limited colored vinyl. This time around I kept it simple and saved a bit of money by just going for the regular black vinyl pressing.

Wednesday, January 08, 2020

Savage Myth, Magic And Steel

New metal records felt a bit underwhelming in 2019, and for the most part I wasn't strongly pushing any of the records from my Top Ten list. They were good albums, but there wasn't much on there that I was excited about. Now that 2019 is done and dusted, suddenly I've stumbled upon a record that I have been giving daily spins.

I'd seen the name Savage Master tossed around a bit over the last couple of years, but I never had any desire to check them out until I was recently in the Shadow Kingdom store, and saw one of their promotional ads for their third and latest album, Myth, Magic And Steel. The cover art looked great, and I figured that I'd check out the video for the title track. Oh damn. I was immediately hooked with that one video...man, that thing is just fucking fun to watch.

Savage Master play an old school traditional metal style. Seriously, this stuff sounds like it was pulled straight off an early Metal Massacre compilation. We aren't breaking any new ground here, but who fucking cares. Let's just bang our heads!

I mean look at that band photo from the inside gatefold sleeve! That is a band that has my attention! This may not be the "best" metal record of 2019, but it is certainly the one that I keep reaching for and giving it multiple spins.