Archive for July 2009
Yes, I admit it. I really have a hard time listening to Venom’s early work. From their debut up to Possessed, I just don’t like it. It was/is borderline awful…at least from what I remember. I haven’t laid ears to that stuff since…well since probably 1995.
All that being said I absolutely love the 3 albums after Possessed: Calm Before The Storm, Prime Evil and Temples of Ice. Calm Before The Storm finally brought some melody a band that needed it IMHO. Chanting of the Priests is such an awesome track…albeit sloppy.
After Cronos left, they hired the Demolition Man to handle the bass and vocal duties. I thought his first 2 albums with Venom were pretty good, at least by Venom standards. He has an Udo-esque type vocal style which works well. Prime Evil is better than temples of Ice but has some typical Venom silliness like Skool Daze. Their cover of Megalomania is kind of neat.
I catch grief all the time for not being a “true” Venom fan. To that I say ‘just be happy I even like any of their stuff at all.’ I do have to admit to liking the hooks in Black Metal. Venom was never known for having great lyrics, but these make me grin. I remember having to return a compilation cassette (Metal Killers Kollection II) back to the department store because of this song. My mom was having no parts of that! hahahha
Super rare closet classick! This was put out by Mercenary/Celluloid Records in 1987 and I’ve probably owned it for about 15 or so years and until today I don’t think I have listened to this in about 10 years. Not even sure where I found it. Doesn’t matter. It’s got some cool stuff on here like Wrathchild (who changed their name to Wrathchild America), Attacker and Halloween etc. Those bands ended up being relatively well-known at least in the underground metal scene. Matriarch is pretty decent. Jett Blakk is pretty average thrash. The Lethal Aggression is pretty bad…but then again if you’re into skate core/thrash/NYHC/punk, you may dig this one. Meanstreak is about as average as hard rock could be. The final track by The Boys is pretty awful.
1. “Armed To Deliver” –Wrathchild (3:56)
2. “Red Dawn” –Matriarch (3:53)
3. “Battered Child” –Jett Blakk (3:39)
4. “Generic Punk” –Lethal Aggression (2:21)
5. “Emanon” – Attacker (4:04)
6. “Come and Get It” -Halloween (3:18)
7. “Lost Stranger” –Mean Streak (2:38)
8. “The Boys Keep Rollin'” –The Boys (4:14)
I’m posting this since it’s pretty rare and has some decent songs on it.
When I look back at Thin Lizzy’s catalogue, it blows my mind that the Johnny The Fox album wasn’t more popular. Other than the final track, Boogie Woogie Dance, it’s damn near perfect. Phil sings his heart out on this. Oddly enough the album is played a half-step down from standard tuning. I had read a while back that Phil wrote most of while recovering from Hepatitis and tuning down made the songs easier to sing.
Thank God for Hepatitis, eh?
There’s a lot of romanticism and sadness on this album of varying degrees. Borderline and Old Flame always tug at my heartstrings for various reasons…loves from days gone by. Phil really had a way of stringing words and phrases together.
Selected verses from Borderline:
Midnight in the big city
At the bar drinking all on my own
Just thinking about that girl and me
How something’s going wrong
Seven beers and still sober
It’s time to change to something stronger
I cannot take this scene no longer
She could have told me it’s all over
Back in my home town
The old place is still the same
But time can cast a spell over something
You can’t go back again
It’s just love or rejection
For this borderline case
No shit, Phil. I feel ya. And from Old Flame:
Once this flame it did brightly blaze
Among the ashes there still remains
A glowing spark in my heart
For that old flame of mine
Dude, that’s what I mean. Old crushes can sometimes die hard (with a vengeance?) . OK, that was weak.
Then the sarcastic tone of Don’t Believe a Word:
Don’t believe me if I tell you
That I wrote this song for you
There might be some other silly pretty girl
I’m singing it to
Don’t believe me if I tell you
Not a word of this is true
Don’t believe me if I tell you
Especially if I tell you that I’m in love with you
The man…a lot of it is in how he sings it too. Such a unique vocalist.
Then you have Fool’s Gold. The romantic notion of leaving your homeland in hopes of finding gold, only to end up with fool’s gold. Oddly the song takes some odd lyrical turns and tells some other stories that don’t seem so related to the initial subject, but it’s still a great tune.
Then…Massacre. This song rules. It’s very metal for 1976. Iron Maiden did an incredible cover of this.
The song Johnny, Rocky and Johnny the Fox Meets Jimmy the Weed and are 3 great rocking tunes as well. Rounding it out is Sweet Marie. A nice little love song about missing his woman while he’s out on the road.
If you’re even mildly a Thin Lizzy fan, this is one album that needs to be in your collection.
Enjoy the tunes.
I don’t even know when these came out but I’ve had the first one forever it seems. It’s definitely better than the second one. Basically it’s a bunch of underground punk/garage bands playing 80s metal/hard rock stuff. It’s fun stuff to listen to every now and then.
Sorry, this is not the Norwegian rockers, so carry on.
I found this in the same record store at James Madison University that drunken weekend that I visited Kelz. 1992. I think it was $1. I figured I had nothing to lose by spending a buck. Fortunately I got something enjoyable. Motorpsycho hailed from somewhere in California and some of the Cali skate rock influence is to be heard in this, especially in the vocals. I’ve listened to this album a lot over the years and it always takes me back to that fun weekend at JMU and also of good times of that following summer in my 82 Trans Am.
Now don’t get me wrong, this whole album isn’t great. There’s some goofiness on here like Fuck It Up, which really is a tribute to the skate core influence. Thunderhead…Drunktank is pretty weak as well. The final track, not really a song, is Barstool Philosophy. Not really interesting at all.
Overall this album gets a 3/5 if nothing else for carrying on the “Thrasher” spirit of SoCal. Don’t Wait, Scarred for Life Some Kinda Friend are worth the price of the album alone, even if I had paid full price for it. So if you’re into that old skate rock stuff like JFA, Los Olvidalos etc, you’ll like this, even if just a little bit.
Now here’s a closet classic! I first heard the track Dead On Arrival on The Metal Shop in 1988 and I am pretty sure I taped the song, if not the whole show (wish I still had those tapes!). I let Kelz hear it the next day or so and he hated it. Doofus. Of course today he’s all about it, or so he says. He’s such a liar sometimes. hahaha. Kidding. Ok, not so much.
Anyway, I promptly went to the Music Man and picked up the cassette. I loved it! Mainly the dude’s vocals. He had a cool range. Good riffs on the album and some smooth drumming. Unfortunately the drums were severely under-produced much like the drums on Megadeth’s Peace Sells or Sanctuary’s Refuge Denied. Very muddy. I loved that tape. This album was just good classy US metal with some Geoff Tate type vocals but music not as progressive at Queensryche.
Lyrically this album could be better but I can overlook it. The one track I don’t dig is their version of Secret Agent Man (Secret Asian Man!). I never liked the original so I didn’t want to hear a cover version of it either. We jammed on this album a lot. We always cracked jokes about the song “Backstreet Rebels”; usually make jokes about some chick…”Backstreet Nikki” or whoever. Silly dumbasses we were, but the lyrics needed to be joked on. All in all this was a fun album to play drums to. The double bass work was straightforward enough that my feet could keep up with it.
In 1991 or 1992 I went to Cleveland to see my friend Bronwyn and hit a great string of record stores up there. One of which had this CD import for $3! This one store had a ton of metal for cheap on vinyl and CD. The manager said “I don’t like metal and just want to see this stuff out of here.” I easily dropped $200 in that place on some cheap metal. Glad to be of service, sir!
So, I highly recommend this to you as some really good 80s US Metal. Again, very out of print so I don’t mind uploading it. I do not recommend their followup album, Vivas Machinas. It was pretty bad.
This is another Kelz turned me on to as he is the king of Japanese metal. These guys weren’t of the typical Japanese metal caliber. They are a little more anthemic style. While I still prefer classic Loudness and some other bands as far as Japanese metal goes, this album and their subsequent EP are really good.
I used to correspond with one of the guys quite often and he was always very excited that someone in the USA knew who they were and liked their music. I think it was their bassist, Yoshi, but my memory has faded as it was about 10 years ago. I think he died shortly after the subsequent EP “MRI” came out. I was pretty sad when I read the news about his passing.
It was so very cool as one day I came home from work and there was a small package from Japan in my mailbox. They had sent me a copy of the MRI EP. To my surprise both Kelz and I were thanked on the back cover. That was pretty cool.
The song Reach For The Sky is absolutely incredible. It has a great feel and it’s pretty sad.
hold my head up high, i will be alright
my soul will fly higher and reach for the sky
always i’m looking for the answer
never seem that i find what i am looking for
i was walking on the empty land
i could not recollect my reason to live
This CD is way out of print and I doubt there were more than a few hundred of them pressed to start with. It’s worth sharing and worth you checking out.