Tag Archives: Vinyl

New Releases – 17th March 2017

Friday is upon us once more. Let us look at today’s new releases and see if they are glorious.

(And thanks to Nick for giving me a heads-up about a couple of these!)

Obituary – Obituary

When an older band releases a self-titled album, it usually suggests a renewed sense of purpose or a big change in style but, having checked out Obituary’s new song Lesson In Vengeance, I’m not sure this album is going to be either. Just sounded like OK meat and potatoes death metal stuff to me. Maybe they just couldn’t think of a title? Anyway, as death metal legends go, Obituary never really caught my interest and this doesn’t seem like it’ll change that. I’ll probably just go back and give Cause of Death another go.

KXM – Scatterbrain 

Korn’s Ray Luzier, King’s X’s dUg Pinnick(?) and Lynch Mob’s George Lynch team up to form Korn X Mob! Handily shortened to KXM. Didn’t even know about this band and they’re on their second album already. Fairly intriguing combo of talented musicians so this should be worth checking out. Lynch is the MVP of KXM, as far as I’m concerned. His playing on the title-track is supreme.

Svart Crown – Abreaction

Apologies to European readers as I should have mentioned this one a week or so ago. But it’s out in the US/Canada today so I get to mention it anyway. Better late than never. I was prepared to write this one off as samey but this French band’s latest batch of blackened death is proving naggingly enjoyable. Nothing original but well-crafted and fresh all the same.

Fit for an Autopsy – The Great Collapse 

The new album from the prominent deathcore practitioners. Just not a deathcore fan so you’ll have to make your own mind up about this one… don’t let me influence you.

On the vinyl front, Back on Black reissue Raven’s Rock Until You Drop and Live at the Inferno. Normally I’d just buy a CD rather than bother with a Back on Black LP but the Raven stuff’s a bit hard to find so I could be tempted. On the other hand, a lot of NWOBHM stuff has been getting reissued on CD and box sets these days so… I’ll maybe hold off. Proggy instrumentalists Animal As Leaders get two remastered reissues on silver vinyl (Weightless and their S/T) and the dull-as-dishwater Lamb of God get the same treatment for their debut album New American Gospel.

And that’s the lot for another week. No massive must-buys for me today but Svart Crown and KXM sound worthy of further investigation. Next week we’ve got one of the year’s most anticipated releases. Until then… happy hunting.

*NEW FEATURE* – The “best cover” game is now available as a poll! Pick your fave here. (Only the releases with new artwork will be included)

The Doomsday Kingdom – Never Machine Demo EP

Never Machine Demo EP – Original Cover

Candlemass bassist/songwriter Leif Edling has dubbed his latest project “music from the catacombs” as it was a visit to Paris’ bone-ridden underworld that inspired its creation. It’s an apt description. With The Doomsday Kingdom’s debut EP Never Machine, Leif’s music goes deeper and darker than it has for some time. The opening title-track and The Sceptre stick fairly close to Candlemass’ modern style but Niklas Stalvind’s grave and gravelly vocals and Marcus Jidell’s excellent, vintage soloing give the songs a fresh, grittier edge. But it might just have been a decent, unremarkable release if it wasn’t for the more interesting and engaging second-half. Zodiac City is a coiled and creepy serial killer yarn with a great chorus hook and the EP ends on a high with Edling taking the mic for The Whispering, a haunting and ghostly string-laden ballad. Never Machine doesn’t quite reach the inspired heights of Leif’s classic output but it’s a real grower and a definite improvement on last year’s half-(Candlem)assed EP Death Thy Lover. Candlemass might have fallen out of favour but these demos show promising signs that Edling still has what it takes to reign again as a king of doom.

(Here’s my copy. It’s the new edition released by Nuclear Blast. With new artwork, lyric sheet and red vinyl)

New Releases – 27th January 2017

It’s Friday. Time for some new releases!

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Kreator – Gods of Violence

I can’t believe its been nearly five years since Kreator’s last album Phantom Antichrist. That album is still one of the best thrash releases of the decade so far, and now the German veterans are back with the hotly-anticipated follow-up. As usual, there’s a mess of versions but the main draw seems to be an extra live DVD or Blu Ray depending on your preference. There are also big box sets for paraphernalia-lovers, people that can’t decide which format they prefer and people that find things like “certificates of authenticity” exciting.

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Annihilator – Triple Threat

The obligatory CanCon of the week! The Canadian thrashers return with three new discs! And it’s called Triple Threat! See what they did there? So you get a disc of acoustic versions of their thrash classics (umm) and a live electric set. And then you get a DVD or a Blu Ray of both of those performances and some extras. Seems like a lot of bang for your Canuck bucks but, here’s the kicker… there is also a 2CD version. Should they not have called that, I dunno, Double Dip?

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Stephen Pearcy – Smash

Here’s the new solo outing from the current, or ex, Ratt vocalist (depending on who you talk to). I’m well out of the Ratt loop but I heard one track Ten Miles Wide and it was good fun. His voice sounded good and it didn’t sound like he was trying to move with the times, which is where a lot of classic rockers tend to trip up. Heard lots of good things about the last Ratt album too so maybe I should be catching up with this Ratt shit.

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Cream – Fresh Cream: Deluxe Edition

Cream’s debut album has been re-released plenty of times over the years but never with any notable extras that I can think of. This set looks pretty neat: three CDs and a Blu Ray with alternate mixes/versions, BBC sessions, a nice hardback book, sexy packaging and it’s not too pricey as these things go either. No certificate of authenticity though. Boo.

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Sepultura – The Roadrunner Albums: 1985 – 1996

Box set of the Brazilians’ classic run of albums, available in CD or vinyl sets. There is no bonus stuff on this but if you don’t have any of the band’s stuff, this is pretty much everything you need right here.

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The Great Old Ones – EOD: A Tale of Dark Legacy

This is the third album of Lovecraft-inspired metal from this French outfit. Gambrel roofs, gibbous moons and fish-folk guaranteed! Looks like Season of Mist have done a really nice job on the packaging for this too.

Quite an interesting week, definitely some stuff here that I’ll want to check out. Anything I’ve missed? Anything you fancy here? Let me know and… happy hunting!

New Releases- 13th January 2017

Time for us to take a look at today’s new metal offerings.

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He’s not the messiah, he’s just a very naughty… thing

Sepultura – Machine Messiah

Sepultura crack on with their fourteenth album. This’ll be good news for the dedicated fans that love the current band in it’s own right. Not so big a deal for people like me that lost interest after Roots (new track Phantom Self isn’t winning me over either). But if you’re one of the dedicated this is a big release. Top tip: the CD/DVD edition and the vinyl editions have bonus tracks. The standalone CD doesn’t.

I'll wait for the follow-up: Balls to the Concert Hall
I’ll wait for the follow-up: Balls to the Concert Hall

Accept – Restless and Live

2014’s Blind Rage was a disappointingly patchy affair so… time to whip out the classics with a live album and video! The band can certainly deliver live and has a glorious catalogue to draw from so this is bound to be fun. That said, I can’t help feeling that I’d probably listen to/watch this once and then forget all about it.

Go right
Go right

Emperor – Various Reissues

In the Nightside Eclipse, IX Equilibrium, Emperial Live Ceremony, Prometheus – The Discipline of Fire & Demise, Live Inferno and Live at Wacken Open Air 2016 all get new CD and vinyl reissues today. Doesn’t seem like much here to warrant buying them all over again but vinyl collectors and anyone new to this legendary band will want to check these out. I had hoped for more reissues along the lines of the expanded In the Nightside Eclipse 20th Anniversary Edition that was released a couple of years back. Ah well.

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Skeletor: evil genius, shit electrician

Grave Digger – Healed by Metal

I’m going to have to confess to being fairly ignorant of this band. I checked out the new track Call for Arms and it sounded pretty stock to me: trad metal with a bit of the old beer-tent singing for the power metallers. I know this band has a long history though, so if I’m missing out feel free to point me in the right direction.

Bubbling away in the underground, we’ve got some Norwegian blackened death from Shaarimoth and their new album Temple of the Adversarial Fire. Getting some great reviews that one. And from Italy, there’s a new EP Rite of Inverse Incarnation from Fides Inversa. That sounds pretty decent too: I like the crazed Jason Medonca-like vocals.

Not a bad roster of releases today but nothing particularly standing out for me. Them’s the breaks! Let me know if there’s anything here that floats your boat or if there’s anything awesome that I’ve missed.

New Releases – 9th December 2016

Greg Lake’s passing has cast a right pall over the HMO Mission Control this week. There’s only one thing for it… some retail therapy. Get some music down ye!

Lovely shades of brown there but maybe this needs some... black. Black!
Lovely shades of brown there but maybe this needs some… black. Black!

Terra – Mors Secunda

UK black metallers Terra release the follow-up to their debut Untitled. Two dark and atmostpheric epics with some uplifting crescendos but mostly dank, raw, dirty and rhythmic. I singled their drummer Luke Braddick out for praise last year and he excels himself again here with a dynamic and intense performance. Worth checking out if you’re a fan of bands like Wolves in the Throne Room.

The anti-gravity guitar: easy on your back but a bugger to hold on to
The anti-gravity guitar: easy on your back but a bugger to hold on to

Deep Purple – California Jam 1974

The film of Purple’s legendary headliner restored for a new release on Blu Ray and DVD. If you don’t have it, this is a totally essential performance. Blackmore’s climatic solo is the stuff of rock legend, both in terms of music and antics. As well as the restorative spit and polish this version has supposedly been re-edited with different camera angles and stuff like that. Not sure that’s enough for me to buy it again but this is worth getting if you’ve never seen it, or if there’s a big Deep Purple fan in your life that you need to buy a Xmas gift for (cough).

Sigh. I miss MERP
Sigh. I miss MERP

Isengard – Traditional Doom Cult

A new Darkthrone album, then an archive release from them and now this! Fenriz fans (and that’s everyone surely?) really are getting spoiled rotten these days. Here are two unheard recordings from his old Bathory-esque side project on a sexy 7” single. Might be a bit of a barrel-scraper but I’ll bite. I’ve got this pre-ordered and if all this Fenriz-related activity keeps up I might have to just arrange a direct debit straight into his bloody bank account.

I'm not sure... but I think this might be a metal album
I’m not sure… but I think this might be a metal album

Root – Hell Symphony

Root’s new album came out recently and I said that, because I only have their debut, I’d rather get more of their older stuff first. Well, the Eternal Death label, were apparently paying attention because here’s a reissue of their second album (on CD and vinyl) with extra live tracks. Bugger. They went to all this bother so I’m going to have to buy this now aren’t I?

Get tae fog!
Get tae fog!

The Doors – London Fog 1966

Fog! This week’s over-egged and over-priced award goes to the new release from The Doors. Fog fog! It’s a recording of a very early show called London Fog 1966 and the set has both the CD and LP in it FOR NO REASON WHATSOEVER and all sorts of trinkets and tat just to pop the price up. Fog Fog Fog! It’s also got a track on it called Tuning. I’m sure that’ll be exciting.

And on top of all this there’s also the new Gnaw Their Tongues album Hymns for the Broken, Swollen and Silent. I didn’t really “get” their last album so I’ll probably pass but I do feel like I’m maybe missing out on something. Shape of Despair’s album Monotony Fields had a buzz about it last year. Seems like it might be up my street but I still haven’t got round to checking it out. And now here’s Alone in the Mist, an album of their old demos from when they were called Raven. I’m sure I’ll catch up with all this stuff eventually… when Fenriz gives me some time off.

And that’s the lot for this week. Let me know if there’s anything cool I’ve missed and if there’s anything you’re rushing out to buy today. Happy hunting!

New Releases – 25th November 2016

It looks like we’re now passing that peak pre-Christmas period of a gazillion releases every week. Because of the Black Friday RSD releases there is still plenty coming out today but, as I’ve already covered those, let’s just take a peek at what’s left. It’s not much and there are only a few releases today that I’m genuinely excited about so let’s just bash through this.

After me everyone! "It's fun to stay at the..."
After me, everyone! “It’s fun to stay at the…”

Primordial – Gods to the Godless (Live at Bang Your Head Festival Germany 2015)

This new live album is a very pleasant surprise and a must-buy. Here’s a band that can pretty much do no wrong and their live performances are devastating. Their Where Greater Men Have Fallen album was one of the best albums of recent years so it’ll be great to have some live recordings of those tracks. I can’t wait to hear this. I’ll probably get all emotional. And it’s just a live album too: just CD or vinyl, no pesky DVDs or Blu Rays. That’s an old-school live album that is! Hope this has credits where they tell you how many guitar strings and tea bags they went through.

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Ask him if he knows the way out of this graveyard. He looks friendly enough.

Darkthrone – Wind of 666 Black Hearts

We’re being spoiled by Darkthrone this year. First their excellent new album Arctic Thunder and now a surprise blast from the past: this new double-vinyl of pre-album rehearsal tracks from 1991-92: their A Blaze in the Northern Sky and Under A Funeral Moon era. It’s a classic period from a vital band and this looks like a very tasty archive release. It’ll come with a gatefold cover, rare photos, lyrics, and liner notes from Fenriz. Amazon reckons this isn’t out until January so buy at the Peaceville store if you need it now. I know I do.

Kick Axe – Vices, Welcome to the Club and Rock the World

Kick Axe! Rock Candy reissues these three albums from the legendary rock kings of CanCon. And, in this case, I definitely can CanCon. I’ve wanted a physical copy of Vices for a while (that cover!) so this is great news. Vices seems to be the only one with a bonus track too (a cover of Humble Pie’s 30 Days in the Hole) Not sure what the verdict is on their other albums though, so I will seek advice. If only I knew some Canucks…

Elsewhere, Czech black metallers Root return (from oblivion) with Kärgeräs – Return From Oblivion. I only have Root’s first album Zjeveni so I think I’d rather catch up with their other older albums than dip in now. Bolzer’s new album Hero is getting a lot of coverage but mixed reviews. I wasn’t even that into them when they were getting rave reviews so I’ll pass on this. The Witchery album In His Infernal Majesty’s Service sounds like it might be worthwhile black thrash but I dunno if I need much more of that. I’ll give it a listen online just in case. D-Beat obsessives Martyrdöd and weirdos Leprous release List and Live At Rockefeller Music Hall respectively. Two bands that I hear about a lot but aren’t really my cuppa.

It’s definitely a case of quality over quantity this week. I’m well up for the Primordial, Darkthrone and Kick Axe so all that Black Friday stuff can just get tae.

And that’s us for this week. Let me know if there’s anything I missed or anything you wish I’d missed. Happy hunting!

New Releases – Black Friday 2016

This Friday, 25th November, will be Black Friday and that means special Record Store Day releases! There will be rare albums and singles released, some new and some reissued. There will be limited editions, fancy gatefolds and vinyl that comes in all ranges of exciting colours like “red”, “clear”, “gold”, “green”, “jobby”, “cherry trifle” and “the colour out of space”.

This is all a much bigger deal in the US where Black Friday is more of a “thing”. It hasn’t quite caught on as much over here in the UK so our list of titles is considerably smaller. Boo. However, the RSD high heid yins promise us that many of the US titles will be released in the UK at some point in the future.

There’s still some good stuff coming out in the UK though, so here’s a selection of the stuff I reckon is the most tempting. But make sure and check out the rest of the available titles for yourself. The UK list here and the much bigger US list here.

Alice Cooper – Live from the Astroturf

Automatically the release of the day as it includes the surviving members of the classic original band. A 7″ single with live versions of I’m Eighteen and Is It My Body: that’s two unfuckwithable classics right there. It’s a gatefold with art prints too. If I was buying one Black Friday release today, it would be this one.

Faith No More – Cone of Shame

The fourth single to come off their excellent Sol Invictus album. This is released everywhere on Friday but only seems to be classed as an RSD-exclusive release in the UK. Just in case you get confused and think it’s only a UK release. It isn’t. The B-Side is just a remix of Motherfucker so I can probably live without this.

Alice in Chains – Live Facelift

The six concert tracks from Alice in Chains live video get their first (I think?) audio-only release. It’s definitely the first vinyl release at any rate. You can’t beat a bit of AIC, especially with Layne Staley, so this is fairly tantalizing. Don’t think I’d want it enough to queue up or get in a fight though…

Jethro Tull – Ring Out, Solstice Bells

The Tull’s Christmas EP given a 40th Anniversary reissue. These tracks are probably available elsewhere and almost certainly remixed by Steven Wilson. Cause what isn’t these days? I do like the idea of this one though… a wee Christmassy bit of Tull.

Napalm Death/Melt Banana – Split

Split 7″ with the UK grind legends and the Japanese noisemakers Melt Banana. Not sure about Metal Banana but Napalm are in great form these days and this looks pretty tempting. Cool cover too.

And that’s about it for me. There’s other stuff like the recent Extreme live album on vinyl, more Hendrix archive-raking, a totally pointless Mötley Crüe disc and on and on and on. But let’s not get carried away here. I don’t go mad for RSD stuff and can’t even really see myself buying most of the stuff I’ve selected here. I would like a copy of the Coop single but I’m not going to lose any sleep over it if I miss out either.

If there’s anything you particularly have your sights on please chip in below and… good luck! I’ll back on Friday with a look at the day’s normal releases. And I tell you, there are a couple of “normal” releases out on Friday that blow this lot right out the water. See you then!