Friday, August 15, 2014

Sebastian Bach is not a big Korrozia Metalla fan

Here's more from the special but with most musical footage cut out.  Contains: great Klaus Meine impression, footage of Skid Row accosting Moscow commuters, and a surprisingly funny Yngwie joke.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

What daring! What outrageousness! What insolence! What arrogance!

Crom - The Cocaine Wars 1974-1989

My first exposure to these guys was on the CD version of the first two Cry Now, Cry Later compilations; I initially had bought it for the Meat Shits stuff but I noticed and was impressed (by the idea--the music, not so much) that a band had chosen to cover Hirax.

This full length is a fun album to listen to--not because of the uh, original music, though, which is just grindy and/or doomy filler that helps segue between and flesh out tracks that are otherwise brimming with samples and song sections repurposed from older bands.  No, what makes this album enjoyable is that it's full of bits lifted from elsewhere.  It's like listening to a goregrind album where the intro samples are more interesting than the music, the Venom live 7" with the brilliant Cronos repartee, and one of the innumerable metal CDs where the band's original music is completely eclipsed by a cover song all at once.

The thing that immediately endeared me to this album was how they throw all sorts of crazy shit together in a wonderfully stream of consciousness sort of way.  Of course, the majority of the samples are the requisite Conan the Barbarian soundbites, but Tom Araya, Bruce Dickinson, Ozzy Osbourne (the entire band, in this case), Hawkwind (the Robert Calvert bit from "Sonic Attack" know, about bleeding orifices, aching pelvises, etc.), and even the Doobie Brothers appear.  Now is a good time to publicly state for the record that I will check out any recording that has 1983-85 Slayer stage banter sampled in it, no matter how terrible it may be. 

They also throw in short little tributes to bands of the past.  There are a  few seconds of "Toxic Trace," "Lethal Tendencies," "Die by the Sword," "Black Funeral," and "Jesus Saves" among everything else, and I suspect there are a couple more I missed (please point these out).  Even without these parts, there's a pretty healthy dose of metallic influence here.  I see the band commonly classified as powerviolence, which I think is kind of lazy and ignores that influence, but I also realize the complexities of trying to classify a band where a grindy part may be followed by a James Earl Jones sound bite and then a borrowed Kreator riff.

I didn't mention the Hyborian Age much in this post--odd when writing about a band whose theme is centered around Conan--but I'm not terribly qualified to do so.  I love the original movie, but I've spent more time in my life reading NWoBHM liner notes than Howard's works.*


Friday, July 18, 2014

Commercial Metal, Vol. 7 - K-Tel compilations

A logo that sort of resembles looking into a chick's blouse from the side...
K-tel is a company best known for hawking their compilation albums on TV--their heyday was the '70s, making me too young and my parents too old to truly appreciate those halcyon times.  More detail or historical info about K-tel could easily go here, but I'm less interested in informing readers and more interested in listening to Kreator.

In fairness to the company, their '88 Rising Metal compilation had a surprisingly good tracklist and was one of my first exposures to thrash metal.*

Anyway, they did some metal compilations that had some TV ads, hence this post:

As with almost every corporate label metal compilation, real heavy metal is tempered with commercial pap.

AND WHAT'S WITH THE MASTER OF METAL HIMSELF?  I dig his gladiator-of-the-dystopian-future look and his jerky low-frame-rate animation, don't get me wrong.  But what's with the face, and arm, for that matter? Is he supposed to be cybernetically enhanced, ala Kano of Mortal Kombat?  Is he some kind of robotic compilation shilling Terminator homage?

Actually, you know what?  Fuck the Master of Metal.  "I bring you..."  Yeah, you brought me an album with Bon Jovi on it.  Fuck off.

These seem to be more solid albums overall, and both volumes have Graham Bonnet on them!  Plus, I absolutely love the Axe Attack logo!  It's rather unfortunate that no NWOBHM bands took the moniker and stole the logo. Guitar Pete didn't even bother to use it.  


Monday, April 28, 2014

Commercial Metal, Vol. 6

Here's another video with an incomplete version of the same Somewhere in Time ad, but in much better quality, and with a brief MTV clip about the Somewhere on Tour shows:
No idea who that chick is--considering she talks about the '87 US leg of the tour, this would have been  a year or two before my own exposure to MTV.  However, I am pleased immensely that there is recorded proof the words "Vinnie Vincent Invasion" were mentioned on MTV by someone other than Adam Curry.

This was one of the only real heavy metal-related PSAs that was made (the only other ones that come to mind are the Megadeth "Rock the Vote" one--which I realize I neglected to put in the Megadeth post--and perhaps the Yngwie PSA I've already covered).  

Unfortunately it seems a bit lame now, especially considering that I hope the typical Iron Maiden fan of today DOESN'T take Bruce's seat belt advice.  Those who blindly worship the band or think they're beyond any criticism should be thrown from a vehicle, pronto.  Furthermore, anyone who compares The Final Frontier favorably with the old material deserves to be paralyzed; I wonder if they'll also say their brand new wheelchair compares favorably to their old classic legs?


Here's one I actually remember seeing on VH1 Classic!  I love the narration because it reminds me a bit of the faux British accent used by Dr. Shrinker himself--the late, great Jay Robinson:

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

The oral vices of Burnt Offering's vocalist and the Bob Sirott metal connection

Must have been an extremely uneventful week in Chicago news:
It's fun to see casual footage of the band, but I'm amused that any news station in 1999 would devote air time to this, let alone WFLD, the Chicago Fox affiliate.  Yes, CHICAGO--this wasn't aired by some rinky-dink Elgin or Berwyn affiliate.  As weird a piece as it is, I hope the band members take a certain pride in it; I doubt Sindrome ever made a morning news program.

Let's not stop there, though.  Did you notice the male news anchor at the very beginning?  Chicago's own Bob Sirott, and the man is no stranger to doing TV coverage on metal bands. Here's a piece he did for the old CBS television newsmagazine West 57th about Wrathchild (America):

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Commercial Metal, Vol. 5 - Let Them Eat Metal

In this installment we have an ad for Attic's 1984 Metal for Breakfast compilation:

The guy on the cover has a slight facial resemblance to Sean Penn--due to his facial expression, this dude may in fact be a hard rockin' Canadian version of Jeff Spicoli.

As was typical for the metal compilations of larger labels, there's some more commercially palatable/hard rock stuff added.  Still, quite a solid tracklist.  I should mention that the Blotto song is a complete parody tune done by a non-metal band, but is still heavier than some of the other tracks.

In 1986, Attic released a follow-up compilation, called--what else--Metal for Lunch:

Based on the rings, hair, and perfect dazed demeanor, this appears to be the same fellow from before, except portlier.  I guess a 2 year diet of ball bearings is quite fattening.

The tracklist largely follows the same pattern, although there's a farther reach for commercial viability with Aerosmith and Kim "I am a Wild Party" Mitchell's "Go for Soda," which are indefensible inclusions on a metal compilation.  As before, there's one song that's noticeably heavier and darker than the rest.
On Metal for Breakfast, it was Mercyful Fate; here, Razor lays in wait at the end of the album, ready to give any unsuspecting thrash-ignorant rockers a serious case of indigestion.

Sadly, there appears to be no Metal for Dinner, and thus, this particular saga of endearingly cheesy album art comes to an end.