"Metal Blade is now on Bandcamp" we wrote back in July. They started out with some of their newer bands, but recently they have also been adding albums from their past archives. And frankly some of these are classics of a stature I thought I'd never see available on Bandcamp. I mean, Slayer?["Metal Blade is now on Bandcamp" we wrote back in July. They started out with some of their newer bands, but recently they have also been adding albums from their past archives. And frankly some of these are classics of a stature I thought I'd never see available on Bandcamp. I mean, Slayer?
You can find three of these classics here, presented by the mighty Autothrall (and also gain some insight in the author as both a young, and a somewhat older metalhead). And check out the Metal Blade Records Bandcamp for say, all post-comeback albums by Mercyful Fate and the entire Amon Amarth discography!]
|Artwork by Albert Cuellar|
Several peers and I once passed a cassette recording of both this and Show No Mercy around to one another, terrified of its contents, perhaps clinging to those vestigial traces of Christian upbringing. Copies were confiscated by teachers and parents, and a few of us got a good 'talking to', myself in particular, for spreading the twisted diocese of Satan through the rank and file of the innocent.
Keep in mind that I was about 11-12 years old at this time, the target of crass, ignorant exaggerations by a Protestant flock, and by no means in thrall of the Prince of Hell. But the damage was done. I bought the actual cassette. My parents took it away. I stole it back. The top of the refrigerator was hardly a sufficient hiding place for my 'unapproved' stock of metal albums. They gave up. I bought the back patch, and was so armored the very day I parted ways from the Protestant faith. What an ironic portrait, a dorky pre-teen armed in denim and devils, striding proudly through a dull spring rain in 1986, having quit Church forever, wearing this image and title on my back. The prescient, magic 8-ball might read that my outlook was not so good (read the rest of the review here).
|Artwork by Ioannis|
it is the classic Fate's Warning which I hold most dear. There is something truly atmospheric about their first three albums. 1984's Night On Bröcken was a solid debut with a few catchy pieces, but it's follow-up The Spectre Within is not only the finest album in the band's career...but one of the greatest melodic metal albums ever to emerge from the US of A. Each of the seven tracks on Spectre creates a bold narrative vision, laden in the mystique of carefully plotted compositions and the haunting keen of John Arch. Outside of the music of Fates Warning, one might find Arch annoying at best, but within the milieu of old, haunted speed metal landscapes, he shines like a fallen God. (read the rest of the review here).
|Cover art by Vincent Locke|
Bloodthirst is fast and it is pissed, but most importantly, it's kind of album you can totally bang your head out to. Now, I'm an older guy, looking forward to such end of life triumphs as Viagra, checkers, more tea than I drink now, and finding my social security depleted thanks to bailouts and government entitlement programs; the kind of guy who might find it a little awkward to just break out headbanging his already strained neck. But even in writing this review, I have probably slipped at least three vertebrae from gyrating my spinal cord and planting my forehead against the nearest solid object (computer desk).
The energy here is among the most Cannibal Corpse have ever ventured, and it is the listener who reaps the gain. The album features what many will one day come to know as the 'best', if not the 'classic' lineup of the band, with George "Corpsegrinder" Fisher on vocals, Jack Owen and shredder Pat O'Brien on the guitars, Alex Webster ruling the bottom end, and the veteran skinner Paul Mazurkiewics, and each is at the very top of his career. But this is not some over-indulgent display of axe wankery, it is a force against nature which clearly has designs on the life of every human being breathing our atmosphere (read the rest of the review here).