Primitive Graven Image - Traversing The Awesome Night. CD. Primitive Graven Image hail from London UK 2007, with a mighty influence from Scandanavia 1987, and the fact that they have already signed to US label Open Grave despite the band's early age (they have been together for only a year in fact ) is testament to the fact that they are a rising force to be reckoned with in the black/extreme metal genres. Brothers Dokkalfur and Ljosalfur have created an album of uncompromising icy cold black metal with further influences ranging from progressive/battle metal to heads down no holds barred death metal. Raw in production, yet intense and at times progressive and beautiful, Traversing the Awesome Night is very obviously influenced by the very first black metal bands, early Bathory, Celtic Frost and Dark Throne spring to mind, yet later tracks on the album such as Victorious hint at a Voivod influence even with more interesting rhythms interspersed with blast beats. An interesting mix of ideas drawring on the past and the present has created a solid debut album that comes recommended.
(Label: Open Grave Records, Cat.No: )
Witchfynde - Best Of. CD. Seventeen track compilation that includes tracks from the first three albums of the occult loving Heavy Metallers. A snapshot from the golden age of metal, the group had suffered a long journey through punk before finding success whilst supporting Def Leppard on tour in 1980. It was worth the wait though, this group are still mentioned today by the new generation of Doomsters as major influences. Remastered sound quality, extensive liner notes and new artwork, this best of was compiled with the cooperation of the band.
(Label: Lemon, Cat.No: CDLEM 89)
Darkthrone - Preparing For War (Special Edition Box Set). 2 CD + DVD. Special extended edition of the rarities collection, now encompassing 2 CDs, a double sided poster and a DVD of their sole TV appearance, extract from two Live shows from Finland '91 and a sequence of interviews. This odds n' sods collection pieces together the highlights and some obscure recordings from one of Norway's most extreme metal bands. Having begun life as a standard Death Metal act around the time of their debut release, 'Soulside Journey' in 1991, they changed their sound and image to fit the uncomprimising Black Metal scene that had begun to take shape around Oslo and Bergen. This remastered Clam Box release charts the band's highly successful career, from their beginnings as everyday metalheads to their respected status as innovators within the scene. Satanic themes, warp-speed riffing and political controversy are all essential ingredients of legend that is Darkthrone. Second CD is a thirteen track spot light on rare and sought after recordings of classic tracks. Booklet features an indepth interview with the band.
(Label: Peaceville, Cat.No: CDVILEB134)
Strapping Young Lad - Heavy As A Really Heavy Thing. CD. Reissue of the band's 1995 classic ten track debut album. Not just another extreme metal band, Devin Townsend's group have a surprising level of complexity, as well as a tongue in check style humour in their audio assault. Genre covering and busting, expect an envigorating ride through the full vocal range of Townsend (screams, growls, singing and more! ) and a band operating without any restraint whatsoever. Highlights include "The Filler - Sweet City Jesus", "Goat" (complete with samples of goats) and the relatively upbeat "Drizzlehell." Brutaltally essential, this edition comes with four bonus tracks, the "S.YL" video and a twelve page booklet with liner notes from Townsend.
(Label: EMI, Cat.No: 775 592)
Black Widow - Black Widow II. CD. CD version of the band's second album, originally released on CBS in 1970, that came hot on the heels of their debut, Sacrifice. Here the group's inherently Satanic music evolved into an original amalgam of progressive rock, folk, british blues and hard rock. Check out the beautiful "The Gypsy", which highlights Clive Jones' flute, and you'll realize why this album is a milestone of the genre.
(Label: Repertoire Records, Cat.No: REP5064)
Venom - Cast In Stone. Dble CD. Cast In Stone originally released in December ’97 alsobecame known as the reunion album as the original line-upof Cronos, Mantas and Abaddon put the past behindthem to once again grasp Black Metal by the barbs. This edition of the album has been completely re-mastered by Cronos who also presides over the entire artistic direction.As per the original release, a bonus disc of classic rerecordedVenom tracks is retained but this time adding afurther five tracks from the rare Venom ’96 mini album,recorded as a limited edition release for the band’sDynamo Festival headline to 90,000 fans. The re-masteringof these recordings benefits from advanced productiontechniques under Cronos’ supervision.
(Label: Castle, Cat.No: CMQDD1367)
Venom - Live In London. DVD. This legendary live concert was recorded at Hammersmith Odeon on the 8th October 1985. Tracks include "Black Metal", "Countess Bathory", "Bloodlust", "Welcome To Hell", "Witching Hour" and "In Nomine Satanas". Classic Black Metal from the masters of the genre.
(Label: Locomotive, Cat.No: LM273)
Black Widow - Come To The Sabbath- The Singles Collection. 6 x 7" box set. Luxury box set that contains the history of the band's singles. Featuring their only three 45s as Black Widow, their one single in their preceding incarnation as Pesky Gee! , who were more of an R'n'B based act, and their final incarnation as theatrical glam-rockers Agony Bag. Available also as a series of CD singles in a box.
(Label: Earmark, Cat.No: EA41053CEP)
Black Widow - Come To The Sabbath- The Singles Collection. 6-CD Box Set. Luxury box set that contains the history of the band's singles. Featuring their only three 45s as Black Widow, their one single in their preceding incarnation as Pesky Gee! , who were more of an R'n'B based act, and their final incarnation as theatrical glam-rockers Agony Bag. Available also as a series of 7 inches in a box.
(Label: Earmark, Cat.No: EA41053CD)
Darkthrone - The Cult Is Alive. CD. Resigning with Peaceville for the first time in over ten years, the gods of TRUE GRIM KOLD KULT NECRO NORWEGIAN BLACK METAAAAL (that's how they pronounce it) are upon us with their thirteenth album. Unlucky for some? Only if you're a Christian, in which case they'll probably come round and kill you- when they've finished working at Oslo General Post Office, that is. With songtitles including 'Whiskey Funeral' 'Graveyard Slut' 'Atomic Coming' and 'Too Old Too Cold' as well as the defiant 'Shut Up' and at least two in their own blackened tongue, ther seems little chance of ther Throne settling down or wimping out. All hail Nocturno and Fenriz, true Kings Of the Kult- and the Kult is certainly alive and well.
(Label: Peaceville, Cat.No: CDVILEF132)
Witchery - Don't Fear The Reaper. CD. No, it's not an album of BOC covers!! After a five year break, Witchery (featuring members of Opeth, Arch Enemy, The Haunted and Mercyful Fate) returned- and smote us all with an album of shredding, screeching, blackened death (or is it deathly black?) metaaal. With songtitles like 'Disturbing The Beast' 'Draw Blood' 'Plague Rider' 'Damned In Hell' 'Immortal Death' and 'Cannonfodder' one knows what to expect- not for the faint hearted.
(Label: Century Media, Cat.No: 775052)
Black Widow (Japanese Pressing) - Sacrifice (Japanese Pressing). CD. Very limited Japanese reissue housed in a mini card gatefold sleeve (with obi strip) of the excellent debut by this early '70's UK progressive/satanic rock band. Featuring the brilliant "Come To The Sabbat" this album is pure Hammer House Of Horror, mixing heavy riffs, flute, keyboards and soaring vocal harmonies with evocative lyrics about demons and Satanic rites- which, alongside the likes of Zior, Ghost (UK), Necromandus, Leaf Hound, Atomic Rooster, Laudunum, Coven (US) and Icecross (Iceland) is an early example of what collectors are now calling 'dark rock'- an ancient ancestor of stoner, doom and black metal. Loving production by Roy Thomas Baker infact a bit of a gem this little re-issue.LAST 2 COPIES OF THIS JAP PRESSING.
(Label: Amr Archive, Cat.No: AIRAC1138)
Rockdetector - A-Z Of Black Metal (Garry Sharpe- Young). Book. Throughout the history of Rock no other genre has pushed the boundaries of aural extremity and social rebellion quite like Black Metal. Many of the bands in this book operate way beyond the parameters of the established rock scene carving their own path in the darkest depths of true underground music. For the first time this ultimate authority documents detailed biographies, line ups, and full discographies with track listing of over 2,000 bands. Included are in depth details of the major artist such as Cradle Of Filth, Dimmu Borgir, Emperor Mayhem, Immortal and Marduk as well as every other band, however small, or distant geographically. Each strain of musical brutality is examined in detail including the Black ambient scene, Viking Metal, Grindcore, Noisecore, and even the ultimate irony of Christian Black Metal.Despite its unceasing growth and increasing legions of fans quite remarkably the phenomenon of Extreme Metal has never been fully documented until now. This along with The Rockdetector A to Z of Death Metal are the first two books in Garry Sharpe-Youngs new extreme metal series. Rockdetector A-Z Extreme Metal series Thousands of bands, hundreds of thousands of dedicated fans, and a truly global reach from a music form that, already a decade old, is thriving and accelerating in growth. From its ancestry of Heavy Metal the myriad of latter day offshoots have prospered to spawn legions of bands globally from the bastions of the U.S.A. and Europe to burgeoning territories such as the Far East, Russia and South America. These are the bands that deal in the very harshest of music forms, that lyrically go beyond the pail in ever renewed attempts to shock the mainstream, and sell ever increasing numbers of records and tour internationally to ever larger audiences yet remain steadfastly out of the public eye. This book is a must for all true metal fans. Ag-Ag-Shagnuraaath- Ragalaaaaaahg-Gnarglethrath (allegedly)
(Label: Cherry Red Books, Cat.No: ISBN1-901447-30)
Venom - MMV. 4-CD Box Set. A 4CD box set covering the entire history of this enormously influentoial Geordie metal band, without whom the last 25 years of extreme music would have sounded considerably different. Features demos, outtakes, rare tracks and alternate takes of material including a radio interview. Also included is a complete disc of live and re-recorded material from the rare and highly collectable Assault series of albums. There's a complete and comprehensive discography with a replica period poster, and obviously it's all as Metal as Metal could ever be. Bang the head that doesn't bang.
(Label: Castle/Sanctuary, Cat.No: CMXBX 743)