Thursday, June 23, 2011

Metal in the Mail - This Week's Swag

If there's one good thing about business travel, it's got to be the accumulation of mail resulting in a heap of loot awaiting your return. I got in late last night and first thing this morning tore into a few padded envelopes and added a half-dozen new CDs to my shelf:

Bible of the BeastReturn in BloodredLupus Dei blew my mind a week ago and I immediately grabbed up the remainder of the current (and currently import-only) Powerwolf discography. I had previewed Return in Bloodred (2005) and Bible of the Beast (2009) online and they were forged from the same metal so there were no real surprises on this morning's quick runs through these records. Return in Bloodred is certainly a slower, plodding, less showy affair (in fact, sounding a hell of a lot like Type O Negative in many respects). Bible of the Beast appears to have set the standard for the band and will probably overtake Lupus Dei in my rankings once fully digested. That said, I cannot wait for Blood of the Saints to drop on August 2nd.

Black Label Society
Stronger Than Death (Reis)Sonic Brew (Reis)Sonic Brew (1999) and Stronger Than Death (2000) have been in my collection ever since I saw the video for "Counterfeit God" way back when. They were used copies, though, and while I have no qualms about buying used music when exploring a band, I am well aware that the band doesn't benefit from my purchase. So - if I dig what I hear, I like to pass my used copies along to a friend to spread the gospel and re-buy new for my own collection. I took advantage of the "Armoury Remaster Series" reissues to upgrade these two titles and, while they're certainly well-registered in the memory banks, I look forward to hearing the new-and-improved versions and also making someone's day with some quality vintage secondhand BLS.

Six Feet Under
WarpathWarpath was a winning suggestion from Chicken Awesome via the New Wave of Thrash Metal from June 2nd's post. I'm reserving this one for a post all its own later in the upcoming week but couldn't resist sampling the first track, "War is Coming." Suffice it to say that this hit the nail right on the head. 

Uriah Heep
Live '73 Expanded: Deluxe EditionAs I am still riding high off the buzz of the mighty Heep live, I made a decision Friday night to make another upgrade and grab the import Deluxe Edition of their classic Live '73 record. As much as I loved the recent live show, I am kind of meah on this double-disc reissue. Yes, you get the previously excised-on-CD "Rock'n'Roll Medley," but, frankly, it does nothing for me whatsoever. There is a bonus disc of some nice radio session work and, overall, it's a much richer (and slightly better sounding) package than the cheap-o bare bones edition I also own. I really don't know what I was expecting and wish the record companies would simply reissue these extras as single discs so we're not forced to re-buy and re-buy the same albums again and again to add a little second-tier material to the collection.


  1. I'm not much a fan of that live Heep either. I've been meaning to get into Powerwolf as well. I think you've pushed me to do so!

  2. The Powerwolf is a lot of fun. A bit silly, admittedly, but a big Queen-like sound with some malevolent subject matter. I'm not totally hating on the Heep, just have come to the conclusion that not every album needs the deluxe treatment. I'd have much rather had a single disc of radio session. That said, in my very biased opinion, the show we both witnessed blows that one away. Thanks for reading!