N.W.O.B.H.M. Survivors

The New Wave of British Heavy Metal was the simultaneous, sudden emergence of hundreds of heavy metal bands in the United Kingdom in the late 1970s and early eighties. The NWOBHM was prompted by the collapse en masse of earlier hard rock bands and heavy metal originators. Led Zeppelin and other blues-based riff rock bands had collapsed into meandering stadium rock with only a couple listenable songs per record at best (“Achilles Last Stand” on Presence). Black Sabbath fell flat on their faces after Sabotage, making the meandering duo of Technical Ecstasy and Never Say Die. Punk declined from almost-progressive works as the The Stooges’ Fun House to boy bands such as the Sex Pistols playing radio pop. Deep Purple regressed to playing what their former guitarist Ritchie Blackmore termed “Shoeshine music.”

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Molested – Blod-draum Remix Released

Dark Symphonies has finally reissued Molested‘s debut album, Blod-draum on CD. A remixed version from the original multi-tracked studio analog tapes is included with the original master from the Digital Audio Tape on one CD. Jump on it.

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Merciless to Headline Heavy Metal Cauldron 2017 Festival

Swedish legends Merciless are slated to headline the Heavy Metal Cauldron festival in Helsinki, Finland on October 27th and 28th, 2017. Also booked are speed metal bands Obscure Burial, Terminus, and Rapid. Finnish maniacs should avail themselves of the opportunity to hear Merciless live.

China Bans VPNs

The People’s Republic of China banned the virtual private networks that hundreds of millions of the 730 million mainland Chinese citizens connected to the internet use to bypass the Communist Party’s “Great Firewall” and obtain truthful information. The Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology announced this crackdown on the use of unsupervised internet connections earlier this week. The Ministry said they would be monitoring all mainland internet service providers, content deliverers, and data centers for “illegal information”. Communists once again are attempting to be thought police as otherwise they would not be able to maintain power.

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Trump Appoints Corporate Stooge to Head FCC

President Donald Trump, who nixed his predecessor Barack Obama’s transfer of American wealth to rice paddy waders for the benefit of plutocrats through the Trans Pacific Partnership, followed Obama’s example and appointed a corporate stooge for the telecommunications industry to head the Federal Communications Commission. Ajit Pai replaces the retiring Tom Wheeler who was head of both the the National Cable & Telecommunications Association and the Cellular Telecommunications & Internet Association which both previously lobbied on behalf of large telecommunications providers against net neutrality, one of the founding principles of the internet. Ajit Pai sat on the board and has opposed all regulations and rulings in favor of consumers, supporting the right of internet service providers to censor and throttle content to their customers’ connections.

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Demoncy – Within the Sylvan Realms of Frost Reissued

Demoncy‘s Within the Sylvan Realms of Frost has been quietly reissued by Nuclear War Now! Productions on CD as part of their series of Demoncy reissues. Within the Sylvan Reams of Frost is the most Norwegian sounding recording of Demoncy’s work and is a nice point in-between the classic Joined in Darkness and the controversial, almost Gothenburg, Empire of the Fallen Angel. Nuclear War Now’s remaster of Faustian Dawn last year sounded great so check this out if you’re a fan of Ixithra’s earlier material.

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Bolt Thrower, Carcass, and Morbid Angel Vinyl Represses

Earache Records is repressing the vinyl LPs of Bolt Thrower, Carcass, and Morbid Angel from the original tapes due to popular demand and inflated Ebay and Discogs prices. I reviewed the “Full Dynamic Range” remaster of Altars of Madness last year which sounded great. All are available for pre-order from Earache’s webstore and digital versions of most are on Earache’s Bandcamp page.

Emperor: Metal for Mordor

The music of Emperor is commonly misconceived by the mainstream metal media and certain YouTube clowns to be merely an atmospheric wall of sound or symphonic black metal orchestration engineered for superficial, surface level aesthetic appeal to an audience atypical for black metal. This is in fact not the case. In the Nightside Eclipse is just as perplexing to typical headbangers on first encounter as it was upon release in 1994. Mainstream audiences are even more flabbergasted and regard the record as a mere curiosity produced by those murderous church burners, preferring Emperor’s more rock-structured later work such as Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk, which abandoned the band’s signature riffing style and method in exchange for ones influenced by more stereotypical Norwegian B-listers such as Enslaved and Kvist. Emperor did eventually sell out, becoming technical guitar wank, rock-structured heavy metal after their rhythm guitarist Samoth and drummer Faust were imprisoned in 1994 and their songwriting influence subsequently waned. Yet In the Nightside Eclipse‘s hymns to Satan and Sauron remain as natural mutations of their metallic predecessors’ attempts to imitate horror scores and classical music’s overwhelming power of sublimity.

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