Here is a fantastic first press metal collection a guy brought in two weeks ago.
And here is a great punk rock vinyl collection I picked up this weekend.
Featured Punk / Metal Vinyl
Here are some of the gold nuggets from the videos above.
Black Flag – Nervous Breakdown EP 1980 SST SST 001 – This is the third pressing of “Nervous Breakdown” by Black Flag. There are over 20 years of pressings of this EP. Actual first pressing is some of the most expensive punk rock albums out there that can go for over $1000 easily.
Ramones – Ramones LP 1976 Sire – SASD-7520 – First pressings of this debut Ramones LP average between $143 – $432, according to Discogs, and keep going up.
Possessed – Seven Churches LP 1985 Combat – MX 8024 – One of the most influential extreme metal albums of all time and some argue the first death metal album, early pressing of Possessed “Seven Churches” are a holy grail of vinyl collectors. The camouflage label is technically a second press, even though it came out the same year. Unlike many vintage metal albums, the first press CD is worth more than the album and is one of the most expensive metal CDs.
Slayer – Show No Mercy LP 1983 Metal Blade Records – MBR 1013 – Slayer’s debut album is now the most expensive and hard to find in their catalog. This copy is the repress technically, but it still sells for north of 300 dollars.
Have Albums Like This You Want To Sell?
If you have a collection like this you are looking to sell, I am always buying. Use the info below to get hold of me.
Psycho Vegas 2022 Festival Review – Best/Worst Bands & More
I attended Psycho Vegas this past weekend and wrote this show review of the best/worst bands. For those who don’t know, Psycho Las Vegas is a metal festival in Vegas every year in late August. Because nobody reads long blog posts anymore, I divided this article into clickable bits, so you can quickly jump around to the best bands, worst bands, and overall festival review.
Best Bands Psyco Vegas 2022 (Ranked In Order)
Mercyful Fate: They were the headliner, and their set was perfect, and I’m not sure what could have been done to improve it. Read the full review here.
Blood Incantation: By far the heaviest band of the entire festival. They shook the floor with their too-early set on day #2. Full review here.
Carcass: These UK death metal veterans absolutely crushed it on day #1. Full review here.
Cirith Ungol: This obscure doom metal band that has been around since 1971 delivered a shockingly awesome set to a packed house on a side stage right before Mercyful Fate. See why they still kick ass here.
Bombers: A Motorhead cover band consisting of members of Abbath not only played Lemmy’s classics to a tee, but frontman Abbath also made the show highly entertaining.Read more here.
Midnight: These Ohio maniacs delivered an amazing high-energy set bedecked in leather jackets and hoods in the 110-degree heat at Psyco Swim. Some now notorious mayhem in the audience further enhanced the set.Read all about it here.
MGLA: This Polish black metal band played way too early on Friday for a completely packed house at 2:30 in the afternoon and destroyed. See more here.
Worst Bands Psyco Vegas 2022 (Ranked In Order)
Primitive Man: This doom metal band was the worst at the entire festival and seem to get booked at Psycho every year. They set the whole doom metal movement backward, one show at a time. See why they suck here.
While none of these bands sucked, they didn’t live up to the hype and are worth mentioning.
Emperor: By far the most hyped band of the entire festival, these Norwegian black metal Vets were far from being lame but weren’t life-changing either. More here.
Rotting Christ: Many people love this Greek black metal band, but they are pretty Hot Topic and play lip-synching to a track. Not impressive at all. Read more here.
Mayhem: While their set at Psycho was quite good, the legend of Mayhem is cooler than their live sets. More here.
Why Are These Bands Even Here at Psyco Vegas 2022?
One of my biggest complaints about the festival is that quite a few acts didn’t make sense even being at the festival. I’m not sure if someone on the staff was super woke and wanted some diversity, but none of this worked.
Bone Thugs N Harmony – I did not see this show because I was at Blood Incantation; this booking made no sense. Bone Thugs N Harmony sucked in the 90s, and from what I’m told, they still blow today.
Method Man and Raekwon – I like Wu-Tang, but they had prime billing and were just mailing it in to a disinterested crowd on Sunday. Horrible. More here.
Bridge City Sinners – This country/folk act was the first band I saw at Pschofest, and well… Read more here.
There were many other examples of this; I just listed some of the most annoying above.
Honorable Mention Bands Psyco Vegas 2022
Intronaut – This LA-based prog-jazz-metal band delivered a superb set very late on Saturday night. Read more here.
No/Mas – Despite having a silly name, these guys supplied a brutal set on Saturday on one of the side stages. More here.
Mothership – This Dallas-based stoner rock band played a fantastic set in the food court on Saturday despite some technical troubles.
Festival Review Day-by-Day 2022
This is a playlist I compiled from the bands mentioned in this blog post. Click on the right-hand corner of this video to see a list of all bands included.
Here are the details on the bands mentioned in my rankings and everything else I saw each day at Psycho listed chronologically,
Thursday 8/18 (Psycho Swim)
The Psycho Swim took place at the Pool at Ayu Dayclub and was an upsell to the main Psycho Festival.
Bridge City Sinners – This Portland-based band played some kind of country folk with violin and banjos, boring the audience. The singer complained about the crowd energy at many points in their set, as if she didn’t understand people had traveled many miles to hear metal, and their low-energy hillbilly music would never connect with this audience.
Elder – Elder sounded great, bringing some heavy Mastodon-style prog metalto the crowd at the pool, only to get rained out two songs into their set.
Midnight – Midnight took the stage at 11 PM. This Ohio-based band is easily my favorite metal band of the last 15 years, whom I discovered at Psychofest 2021. They played one of the best sets I’ve seen from them, clad in leather jackets and masks in the 110-degree heat. During their set, all hell broke loose when a girl threw a drink in my friend’s face. After a bit of arguing, they started fighting, and the girl pulled my friend’s top off in the struggle. After that, topless combat started and restarted thrice as the band played on. Cellphones, wallets, threats, and insults flew everywhere in the mayhem, and the incident went down as the most notorious of Psycho 2022. If anyone has a video of this debacle (and I know someone does) — contact me here. I would love to see it.
Elder (Part 2) – Elder continued their rained-out set inside on one of the side stages. Again, they are a good band but start to sound like a low-rent Mastodon after 3 or 4 songs – a little goes a long way.
Friday 8/19 (Day 1)
MGLA – This controversial Polish black-metal band MGLA (Polish for “Fog”) played in a way-too-early set at 2:30 at the event center. MGLA has been canceled from European festival events because of false claims by German Antifa that they are NSBM (National Socialist Black Metal). Due to such problems, seeing them live is a rare circumstance. MGLA had the Event Center packed early. Nevertheless, MGLA punched above their weight and sounded far better than they do in their studio recordings. Perhaps this is because the touring group consisted of studio musicians who didn’t play on the albums. Regardless MGLA sounded evil as hell and made it onto my list of best bands at Psycho! See them if you ever have the opportunity.
Carcass – Admittedly, I had lost interest in Carcass over the years. I saw them around 2011 and thought they were OK. However, at Psycho, they were unbelievable. Everything about their set ruled — from song choices (mostly 90s material) to the band’s sound, lighting, and energy. I’m not sure what changes the band made over the last ten years, but it’s working! Also worth noting, Bill Steer may be the most underrated guitarist in metal – the guy doesn’t get enough credit for being the savage he is.
Mayhem – I had recently seen Mayhem in LA and wasn’t impressed. Consisting of only one original member (Necrobutcher) – the story of Mayhem is cooler than seeing them live. But, to be fair, the band’s set that day was pretty great, so I shouldn’t judge them too harshly.
Emperor – Undoubtedly, Emperor was the most hyped band of the entire festival because this would be their first US show in 15 years. I have tried to listen to Emperor over the years, and I never got it. I didn’t hate them, but they weren’t anything I went back to either. Maybe it would come together live. I expected the band to take the stage in corpsepaint, but I was surprised to see the singer come out looking like he should be an accountant. The music was well played and quite tight, but it wasn’t life-changing either.
Nuclear Assault – Thrash metal veterans Nuclear Assault was the last big band to take the stage on Friday at midnight. I’m not sure what went wrong here. Maybe the band took a decent amount of money to play the show and never rehearsed, or perhaps it was too hot and late to play outside at the pool, but Nuclear Assault was terrible! John Connely kept making jokes like, “This was a lot easier when we were 25,” which made it even more evident that they were struggling. Nevertheless, it was so bad I left after three songs.
Akhlys – The last band I saw of the night was Akhlys, who was still playing inside. The band sounded OK but played to a track with a lot of prerecorded stuff. Playing to a track was a disturbing trend used by many bands at the festival. I am not a fan of this type of cheating.
Saturday 8/20 (Day 2)
Saturday was the worst day of the festival by far, but there were a few bright spots.
Blood Incantation – I had heard this band a bit before, and they didn’t make an impression on me for some reason. I sell many of their albums, so I decided to check out their live set as work research. On the festival’s second day, Psycho opened the upstairs ballroom and added a stage where many of the bigger bands would play. Blood Incantation played in a packed room and was amazing. They were the heaviest band of the entire festival, approaching Obituary levels of heaviness at times (this is not something I say lightly). Like MGLA, they are even better in a live environment than on records. The singer’s frequent jokes between songs about “Thanks for resisting the temptation to see Bone Thugs N Harmony” won points with me. Blood Incantation was easily the second-best band to play Psychofest, and you should definitely see them live if you ever have the chance.
Primitive Man – These guys were my pick as the worst band at Psycho Unlimited. If you took a guitar and bass, put them on stands, allowed them to feedback at an annoying volume while walking around in a circle and kicking them intermittently while occasionally hitting some drums at 60 BPM and screaming like you’ve been constipated for two weeks you would be able to recreate their sound perfectly. This isn’t a slam on the funeral doom genre because bands like Bell Witch and Mournful Congregation play this same style of music 1000 times better. Yet, somehow these guys get booked every year at Psycho and given decent time slots. I wasn’t the only person who felt this way, as you could see many leaving the room in droves.
Liturgy – I could only watch about a minute of the girl-fronted black metal band. As soon as I heard the vocals, I knew it wasn’t for me.
No/Mas – After a quick exit from Liturgy, I went back downstairs to check out No/Mas, who is a brutal hardcore-infused death metal band. They had some excellent breakdowns. The guitar player’s rhythm playing is awe-inspiring. I will definitely be looking for more from these guys.
Bombers – Bombers is a side-project Motorhead cover band featuring members of Abbath and was unbelievable. Frontman Abbath not only recreates Lemmy’s vocals/bass flawlessly (it’s a lot harder than it looks), he even nails the between-song banter and copies all of Lem’s mannerisms exactly, never breaking character for a second. He does all of this dressed exactly like him with some fake facial hair and English prosthetic warts affixed to his face. They also picked an excellent selection of Motorhead tunes that made this rare show even better. If you ever have a chance to see Bombers, you absolutely should.
Suicidal Tendencies – Easily one of the worst bands of the festival; pretty much everything about their performance was 1000% cringe. Sole original member Mike Muir didn’t have heavyweight musicians like Dave Lombardo in the band anymore. Mike’s never-ending cheezy rants before the annoying extended 10-minute versions of the songs just worsened it. Muir ran around the stage doing his signature suicidal dance, but the now older Muir didn’t look like he could move his neck anymore and looked profoundly comical. Add to the fact that many of the songs don’t stand up anymore (some, not all) make me think Suicidal should hang it up and hang on to their legacy.
At The Gates – I didn’t catch At The Gates because the pool hit capacity. They are far from my favorite band anyways.
Elder (Show #3) – Elder is OK, but I had my fill by show three. I left after two songs.
Dance With The Dead – Some raver DJ crap with a guy playing guitar. Horrible. I’m not even sure why these guys got booked.
Intronaut – Despite having a 1:45 AM time slot, LA’s Intronaut pulled a decent crowd at Redtail. Honestly, I’m not a massive fan of their brand of Jazz/Prog metal, but they do what they do so well you can’t help but like it. The band manages to walk a tight line between Mastodon-style heavy parts fused with odd-time jazz passages, with bassist Joe Lester’s flawless playing being the glue that holds it together. The arrangements are clever enough for the band to switch gears like this without alienating any die-hard metalheads with the jazz passages. The band had not played live in almost two and a half years; another reason Intronaut made my list of honorable mentions. You should definitely consider catching them live.
Sunday 8/21 (Day 3)
Katatonia – I don’t know anything about these guys, but this Swedish Goth act is cringy and cheesy as fuck. I couldn’t even make it through two songs. Horrible.
Paradise Lost– This veteran English goth rock band is Type O Negative minus the cool. I’m not saying they were terrible because they weren’t. Fun Fact: The band has been the same five guys in the lineup since the early 90s, which is super rare and neat.
Geneva Jacuzzi – Horrid, electronic DJ synth-pop band whose music is best suited as the soundtrack for a gay bar. I have no idea why these guys got booked at a metal festival. Truly vomit-inducing.
Cirith Ungol – Ventura’s Cirith Ungolhas been around since 1971 and is a band I never thought I would get a chance to see live. But, despite their advanced age, these guys killed it. Honestly, I would have moved them even higher had they stuck to only classic material; they featured at least two or three new songs in their set. None of these songs sucked; they just were not what I came to hear. I would have been thrilled to see them play the King of the Dead album in track order. A guy can wish. Nevertheless, the band plowed through several classics like “King of the Dead”, “Black Machine”, and “Atom Smasher”. Of note is how shockingly awesome Tim Baker’s voice still sounds, almost better than it did back in the day. New guitarist Jim Barraza is a beast and is so good he makes virtuosity look easy! I must say I was very impressed with the show and would see these guys again for sure.
Mercyful Fate – Possibly the most important extreme metal band of all time would be the headliners on the festival’s final day. I felt they would be good despite having only two original members, King Diamond and Hank Sherman, but they over-delivered. Their set looked incredible, and the band opened up with “The Oath.” Everything about the show was first class, and I don’t think anything could’ve been improved. King Diamond’svoice is still top-notch, as was the band. The Setlist consisted of all songs from the first EP and two albums, plus one new song that the band tested on the audience. Highlights included “A Dangerous Meeting,” “Corpse Without A Soul” and “Satan’s Fall.” Mercyful fate was by far the best band of Psycho.
Mercyful Fate Setlist
A Corpse Without Soul
The Jackal of Salzburg
Curse of the Pharaohs
A Dangerous Meeting
Doomed by the Living Dead
Come to the Sabbath
Method Man and Raekwon – I was not sure why they were booked. Don’t get me wrong; I have nothing against hip-hop, and during the 90s doldrums of metal, I was listening to rap almost exclusively. The Wu-Tang Clan was one of my favorites; I still listen to them occasionally. However, Redman and Raekwon were mailing it in, they didn’t seem like they really cared about the show, and we’re just playing bits of songs and fucking around. What is even crazier is the stellar timeslot they got. Again, one of those bands that didn’t need to be there.
Rotting Christ – this Greek black metal band would be the last band of the festival. I included this band in my list of overhyped bands not because they suck; I don’t get what they do. The entire show is on a track. Many of the drums and vocals aren’t even performed live. When you get to this point of playing to a recording, you are lip-synching and are black metal Milli Vanilli. Rotting Christ is Hot Topic black metal, and I am not a fan.
Overall Psycho Festival Review
All in all, Psycho Vegas 2022 was a great time. Was it as good as Psychofest 2021? No, it wasn’t. Two big things stick out in my mind for this.
One is the change of location from Mandalay bay to Resorts World. Resorts World is a newer hotel which is basically three crappy older hotels on the ghetto end of the strip (Crockford, Conrads, and the Hilton) joined by a casino area and re-branded. For several reasons, it’s a big step down from Mandalay Bay.
Among the problems is the way Resorts World is thrown together. Many of the bands were playing in converted sports bars. The only dining in the hotel consists of the food court area, which is consistently terrible, no matter what restaurant you go to. When you are at an all-day show, eating there makes a lot of sense, and none of the choices are good. To add insult to injury, it’s expensive. If you are going to Vegas and want to complain about money, it is not your town, and I get that. The difference between Resorts World and Mandalay Bay is if you spend $30 on lunch, at Mandalay Bay, you could be eating the finest bowl of jambalaya at House of Blues. At Resorts World, you’re spending $30 on some barely edible hamburgers and french fries.
Also, the staff is quite disorganized and inexperienced. Going from show to show is a constant trip through various metal detectors and security protocols. Some venues allow you to bring alcohol from other places at the show. Some don’t. Some prices at bars are pretty reasonable by Vegas standards, and some are ridiculous and seem to fluctuate depending on who’s serving you. Mandalay Bay is much more professional and upscale; hopefully, the organizers will move it back for 2023.
The other problem with the festival is that it seems like one of the bookers is force-fitting bands that don’t belong on the bill. I’m not sure if some woke staff member is trying to include some diversity in the show with hip-hop acts, but I can assure you it is not working. Just inside the metal genre, it is already highly diverse with countless sub-genres, and tens of thousands of bands worldwide would cut off their left arm to play this festival and do it for nothing. Hopefully, they will keep it to what people are paying their ticket prices for next year.
Overall, I feel like I got my money’s worth from my $450 ticket and look forward to going again next year. Hopefully, the organizers will read this review and iron out some of the hiccups before 2023.
This is a small but valuable group of high-dollar CDs I picked up from a collector in Northern California. While this isn’t a massive collection (numbering less than 40 CDs), I buy both small andlarge collections — none is too big or too small. If you have a collection like this you would like to sell contact me.
In this group of CDs, there are a lot of great rare CDs from European record labels like No Fashion Records, No Colours, and Necropolis Records that are all out-of-print. Some of the titles have never been reissued, and many others have. Regardless, the original 90s pressings are very sought after and quite expensive.
List Of Black Death Metal CDs
122 Stabwounds – The deity of perversion (HNF023CD)
A Canorous Quintet – Silence of the world below (NFR019)
I picked up a nice collection of near-mint funeral doom and post-metal CDs and vinyl, mainly consisting of newer bands (average 2016 and later) from a guy in New Hampshire. Admittedly, I hadn’t heard of almost all of the bands in this collection. Nor was I familiar with “Post-Metal” or “Funeral Doom”. This new collection gave me an excellent chance to not be another boring middle-aged boomer and get caught up with times.
The good news was I discovered a lot of great new bands, record labels, and genres of music that I might not have otherwise.
In going through this collection, I found…
New Metal Genres
Post-Metal: Seeing the prefix “post” applied to anything musical sets my hipster alarm bells off, not in a good way. However, I did enjoy a lot of the post-metal bands, especially Gaerea. For those not in the know, the post-metal bands on this list sound like black metal with just a trace of melody and some progressive elements you might hear in Mastodon or Gojira. That is probably over-simplifying it, but that was my impression of the bands documented below.
Funeral Doom: Funeral doom sounds like what “doom metal” should like sound to me. It’s slow – like 70 BPM. The riffs are heavy, but the good bands like Bell Witch, Slow, and Mournful Congregation break it into atmospheric, almost Pink Floyd-sounding parts before breaking back into the crushing metal. One of the more prominent labels in this genre seems to be India’s Transcending Obscurity Records, which has a sizable roster of bands from everywhere in the world.
As a metalhead of over 35 years, I try to avoid getting stuck in the past, but sadly, this is something everyone who listens to music does. There is still a lot of hope and vitality from this new crop of bands, labels, and metal genres, which is excellent!
Some of the value of these albums and CDs wasn’t super high, but seeing as many of these are first pressing, and the average-sized run seemed to be only 500 records, should any of these bands break big, these albums could be a goldmine!
List Of Funeral Doom and Post-Metal CDs and Vinyl
I usually film a Youtube video and add it to my “Sell Your Heavy Metal” playlist. Still, because so many of the albums don’t have the band names on the front, or they are written in some indecipherable black metal font — I decided to save myself the embarrassment.
So with no further adieu, here is the list…
Gaerea – Unsettling Whispers deluxe box (no plastic sleeve or merch, sight wear on binding)
Lurk – Deluxe Fringe box (has plastic sleeve and sticker)
Desolate Shrine – Deliverance from the Godless Void
Dormant Ordeal – It Rains, It Pours
Eryn Non Dae. – Abandon of the Self
Eryn Non Dae. – Meliora
Esogenesi – Esogenesi
Eternal Storm – Come the Tide
Evadne – Dethroned of Our Souls
Frigoris – In Stille
From Ashes Reborn – Existence Exiled
Gaerea – Unsettling Whispers
Glare of the Sun – Theia (sealed)
Hinayana – Order Divine
Hope Drone – Cloak of Ash
Imber Luminis – Contrasts
Imber Luminis – Nausea
Lingua Ignota – Caligula
Lòdz – Time Doesn’t Heal anything
Nullingroots – Malady’s Black Maw
October Tide – Tunnel of No Light
Oubliette – The Passage
Ovnev – Incalescence
The Reticent – On the Eve of a Goodbye
ROSK – Miasma
Sea of Bones – The Earth Wants Us Dead
Shrine of the Serpent – Entropic Disillusion
Skeletonwitch – Devouring Radiant Light (sealed)
Skyborne Reveries – Winter Lights
Soliloquium – Things We Leave Behind
Soothsayer – At This Great Depth
A Swarm of the Sun – The Rifts
Unreqvited/Asunojokei – Nocturne
Unreqvited – Mosaic I
Vardan – Enjoy of Deep Sadness
Vorna – Sateet Palata Saavat
Wilt – Ruin
Looking To Sell Some Records Or CDS?
I am the largest buyer of heavy metal and punk collections in the world (as far as I know) and pay collectors handsomely for their treasure. So if you or someone you know has one to sell, here is my info.
This video shows a crazy rare collection of black and death metal CDs from the 90s thru 2000s that I bought from a collector in Sweden. There is a ton of crazy out-of-print stuff from labels that are now out of business in Europe. However, many of these CDs have since been reissued by Metal Blade, Napalm, Century Media, and others. You can get many of these reissues, but the originals are easily worth 20-50 dollars (sometimes less, sometimes more).
I didn’t have time to put together a complete list for this month’s blog update, but you can see all of them in the video, and I have taken some time to highlight a few of the best ones I’ve found from this collection.
Big CDs In This Collection
Monstrosity – Imperial Doom CD 1992 Nuclear Blast – NB 055 CD [ORIGINAL PRESS] – Monstrosity was a death metal band that became the jump-off point for many death metal musicians, most famously, George “Corpsegrinder” who is currently fronting Cannibal Corpse, which is probably what makes this CD worth so much. This CD goes on eBay / Discogs for north of 100 dollars.
Mayhem: Deathcrush CD 1994 Deathlike Silence – DSP Anti-Mosh 003 NORWAY – Mayhem’s debut EP. While is technically a reissue, this was the first time this album came out officially on CD. This item is heavily counterfeited and reissued. Only the first press had no barcode on the tray card.
Thornium – Dominions Of The Eclipse CD 1995 Necromantic – NGP 005 Netherlands – Recorded in 1994 this release from the Swedish black metal band Thornium is worth around 100 bucks. I’m not sure why, it just is!
Behemoth – And The Forests Dream Eternally CD 1995 Entropy – DE 101MCD *Italy – Minialbum released very early in their career and never reissued to the mid-2000s. Song #4 “Evil and Hate” is a tribute to Bathory.
Have A Collection To Sell?
If you have a CD collection like this you would like to sell, contact me here:
Toronto’s Sacrifice is definitely on my list of metal bands that should have been bigger. 1985’s “Torment in Fire” is the first wave black metal classic, and 1987’s “Forward To Termination” is a thrash metal classic that is easily on par or better than many of their peers from the Golden Age Of Metal. Despite playing the right kind of music at precisely the right time and quite well, mainstream success was in the cards for Sacrifice.
The band released a few more albums in the early 90s, then broke up and reformed in 2008, and is still active today.
Newly released on Blessed Curse Recordings comes an excellent treat for a fan of this band. “Sacrifice – Live At The Starwood Club Toronto Nov 23, 1985” documents the band (as the title would suggest) — Sacrifice playing a live set very early in their career between the release of “Torment in Fire” and “Forward To Termination“.
New Live Album 2022
All of the songs are selections from “Torment In Fire” and are as follows:
TURN IN YOUR GRAVE
BURNED AT THE STAKE
Listen On Youtube
The recordings are rough and raw but are far from terrible. Unfortunately, there are only 500 copies of this album available, and they are hand-numbered, so grab one while you can.
We decided to take a chance and drive an hour outside of LA to catch Napalm Death playing with Final Conflict at Transplants Brewing Company in Palmdale, CA, on April 15, 2022. I wasn’t sure what to expect from the venue, but I have to say I was thoroughly impressed. Transplants Brewing Company is easily better than EVERY venue in Los Angeles right now. There was plenty of free parking (as opposed to the $30 many venues in LA charge), 7$ beers brewed in-house, a friendly staff, and the place has a great sounding room. If you live in LA, it is definitely worth the trip.
A local support act was on the bill and was actually pretty good, not life-changing good, but they were decent. I wanted to link to a place where you could find their music, but because of the crazy death metal font they used for their logo, I have no idea what the band’s name was (see flyer below). If anybody knows, feel free to drop it in the comments.
Next up was Final Conflict from Long Beach, CA. Palmdale was a one-off show, as Napalm Death continues their US tour with Arch Enemy and Behemoth starting in Tempe. I don’t know a ton about Final Conflict other than the fact they’ve been around forever, and I was familiar with some of their better-known songs. The band consisted of only one original member (Jeff Harp on guitar) and was backed up by Anthony Robles and Nick Manning, who play with a number of other punk rock bands, including DI.
Final Conflict dished out some competent Cro-mags style punk/hardcore that was well received by the crowd and got the mosh pit swirling at a furious pace. Again, nothing life-changing but delivered in such a professional manner; you can’t put it down either – especially considering the ages of some of the long-time members.
Next up was English grindcore legends Napalm Death, who, if you want to get technical about it, consist of no original members. However, the current line-up has remained relatively steady since the early 90s. Guitarist Mich Harris does not tour with the band, and sitting in for him is touring guitarist John Cooke who, in my opinion, is not that good, but because of the nature of grindcore music, his sloppy playing doesn’t take much away either.
That band delivered a blistering set, consisting of a lot of material from their last two releases Apex Predator – Easy Meat (2015) and Throes of Joy in the Jaws of Defeatism (2020), as well as quite a few classics from the 80s and 90s with two cover songs (including the Dead Kennedy’s “Nazi Punks Fuck Off”). Bassist Shane Embury is an absolute monster, and drummer Danny Herrara is one of the best skinsman in the business. The duo is a formidable rhythm section. Vocalist “Barney” Greenway hasn’t lost a thing over the years vocal-wise and may have even improved. Unfortunately, his stage presence is a bit goofy, and he often looks like he’s having a seizure as he dances on stage. In addition, some of his far-left rants between songs leave a lot to be desired and make me thankful I can’t understand the lyrics on their recordings. If you could make out what he was saying, I imagine it would sound like the rantings of a possessed MSNBC host.
Napalm Death hasn’t lost a thing over the years and solidly deserve their position as the biggest band in grindcore because they play this form of music better than everyone.
Catch them on tour with Arch Enemy and Behemoth in these cities through May.
Napalm Death On Tour With Behemoth and Arch Enemy
Sat 16.04.2022 Tempe, AZ – Marquee Theatre Mon 18.04.2022 San Antonio, TX – The Aztec Theatre Tue 19.04.2022 Dallas, TX – Amplified Live Thu 21.04.2022 St Petersburg, FL – Jannus Live Fri 22.04.2022 Atlanta, GA – The Eastern Sat 23.04.2022 Charlotte. NC – The Fillmore Charlotte Mon 25.04.2022 Toronto, ON – Rebel Tue 26.04.2022 Montreal, QC – Mtelus Thu 28.04.2022 New York, NY – Terminal 5 Fri 29.04.2022 Philadelphia, PA – The Fillmore Philadelphia Sat 30.04.2022 Worcester, MA – Palladium Mon 02.05.2022 Chicago, IL – The Riviera Theatre Wed 04.05.2022 Denver, CO – Ogden Theatre Sat 07.05.2022 Salt Lake City, UT – The Depot Mon 09.05.2022 Seattle, WA – Showbox SoDo Tue 10.05.2022 Vancouver, BC – Vogue Theatre Wed 11.05.2022 Portland, OR – Roseland Theater Fri 13.05.2022 Berkeley, CA – The UC Theatre Sun 15.05.2022 Los Angeles, CA – The Hollywood Palladium NAPALM DEATH U.S. headline shows: Wed 13.04.2022 Fresno, CA – Strummers + Elder Devil Thu 14.04.2022 San Diego, CA – Soda Bar + Deaf Club Fri 15.04.2022 Palmdale, CA – Transplants + Final Conflict Wed 27.04.2022 Syracuse, NY – The Lost Horizon + Fed Ash Tue 03.05.2022 St. Paul, MN – Turf Club + Pig Destroyer Fri 06.05.2022 Grand Junction, CO – Mesa Theater + Unto Others
Reviews of albums are not something I typically delve into on this site. However, when bands issue new albums that are essential metal, I will drop an album review. The last one I did was for Mastodon’s Hushed and Grim. This time in the crosshairs is Midnight’s Let Ther Be Witchery.
Let Ther Be Witchery is the 6th official studio album from the Ohio punk/black metal trio Midnight. The easiest way to explain Midnight’s sound is they are a modern-day Venom. I love Midnight because they bring back the first wave of black metal — explored in the early 80s by bands like Venom, Sodom, and Celtic Frost with a tinge of punk added to the mix.
The band’s 2011 Satanic Royalty is a 100% metal classic, in my opinion, and sets a high bar. So let’s see how the new album stacks up to previous efforts.
First off, the production is solid. Everything is dialed correctly, and the sound is crisp and clean without being overproduced while still retaining the band’s dirty sound.
Let There Be Witchery Track By Track Review
The opener “Telepathic Nightmare” does a great job setting the tone for the album and includes some excellent Tom G. Warrior-style guitar bends. Track 2 is “Frothing Foulness”, a heavily Venom-influenced number that clocks in at less than 3 minutes. None of the ten songs pass the 4-minute mark, so this isn’t an album for fans of epic-length nerd metal.
“In Sinful Secrecy” comes next and has an Omicron-catchy riff with an almost classic rock feel that will stick in your head for sure. Unfortunately, “Nocturnal Molestation” comes next and is one of the weaker tracks on the album. One criticism of Midnight is sometimes their tongue-in-cheek lyrics work, and other times they do not.
Track 5 is “More Torment” and is easily my favorite track on the album. The song features a memorable ultra-heavy riff that reminds me of Celtic Frost in their prime. Unfortunately, I recently saw Midnight in Los Angeles, and while they played many songs from this album, this song was inexplicably omitted from the setlist! If someone in the band is reading this review, this is something you should fix!
Track 6, “Let There Be Sodomy” is the second-best track, even though the lyrics are silly. The main riff is incredible and reminds me of my favorite song from this band, “You Can’t Stop Steele.” Next, in track 7, “Dead Virgin.” the band goes into some Merciful Fate territory – with some traditional heavy metal riffs and even one riff that sounds lifted directly from “Black Funeral” on Melissa.
Next is “Snake Obsession” and is a Motorhead sounding track. It is one of the more forgettable tracks on the album. The second to last track, “Villany Wretched Villany,” is a fun, memorable song that stands out on the album with some Tunbonegro and Scorpions influences.
The final track, “Szex Witchery” is a great way to end the album and will undoubtedly leave the listener wanting more. It features some excellent NWOBHM style riffs and ends with a doomy harmony guitar outro. Interestingly, one thing common to Midnight albums is that even though the band is a trio, there are many overdubs on the guitar parts. However, having just seen the band live, guitarist Shaun Vanek is skilled enough to make it sound whole in concert. Props to him on that.
Midnight Final Verdict
All and all, Let Ther Be Witchery is a great album and is well worth checking out, especially if you are a fan of first-wave black metal like I am. It’s not as good as Satanic Royalty, which seems to be the band’s high-water mark to this point, but is much better than 2019’s Rebirth by Blasphemy (also on Metal Blade).
The only place I can take points away from Midnight is: 90% of what they do has already been done by Venom in the 80s. There are even recordings of Midnight covering Venom songs in outtakes, so it’s not like they try to hide the influence. That said, they take everything Venom did and bring it up a notch for the 2020s, and that alone makes Midnight my favorite “new” band playing metal today!
The original owner was a younger guy, but the entire collection consisted of 20% from the Golden Age Of Thrash Metal and 80% from the 90s peak of death metal. 95% of these albums are reissues, but a few first are pressings that include “Slowly We Rot” and “Cause Of Death” from Obituary.
Even some of the reissues can be shockingly expensive due to the 7-12 month delays in vinyl production that is now plaguing the music industry.
I have cataloged the inventory from this purchase below. If you are looking to buy any of the entries listed can do so at ThrashMetalIQ on eBay.