Heavy Metal Gems

Heavy Metal Gems
Heavy Metal Gems - Forgotten Metal Masterpieces

Rare and forgotten heavy metal gems of the late 70s, 80s, 90s and 2000s from a wide range of genres like NWOBHM, Speed Metal, Power Metal, Traditional Metal and even Epic Metal. Listen to the metal albums online, read the reviews and download what you want! Don't forget to support the bands showcased in the site. Contact me at pete.theo@live.com for anything. Stay heavy and Keep it True!


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Warning (Swe) - Armageddon (1987)

Warning (Swe) - Armageddon (1987) Heavy Metal
Band: Warning
Release: Armageddon (Single)
Genre: Heavy/Thrash Metal
Country: Sweden
Year: 1987
Label: Active Records
Note
Haling from the land of northern, Sweden, WARNING was a fairly short-lived band that only managed to release one single in the two years they've been together.  With thrash and NWOBHM influences deeply rooted in the band's repertoire, "Armageddon" delivers a more dark-sounding record than most 80s Swedish bands I'm used to.  Think of GOTHAM CITY, only a lot heavier!

Tracklist

Rating: 90%

Warning Sweden Heavy Metal
Lineup
Eric Wikström: Vocals
Joachim Lindbäck: Guitars
Krister Lindman: Guitars
Stefan Åberg: Bass
Johan Henriksson: Drums

First Look: Starblind - Darkest Horrors (2014)

Starblind - Darkest Horrors (2014)
Band: Starblind
Release: Darkest Horrors (Full-Length)
Release Date: April 29th, 2014
Genre: Traditional Heavy Metal
Country: Sweden
Year: 2014
Label: Stormspell Records
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Review
Sweden has done it yet again.  Upholding one of the world's most flourishing underground metal scenes, Sweden has constantly been releasing quality records since the 80s.  I don't know if it's directly linked to their vibrant culture, or the air that they breathe, but man can they ever write some classic heavy metal!  With that being said, I introduce you dudes to Sweden's next rising band, STARBLIND.  Proudly brewing a sound that attempts to carry the legacy of the NWOBHM, STARBLIND have already released three songs from their upcoming record, "Darkest Horrors", which is set to be released on April 29th of this year.  

What is immediately clear, judging from the teaser tracks,  is that the album is very promising.  I mean I just absolutely love how each instrument has been carefully arranged and mixed, especially throughout my personal favorite track at the moment, "I Stand Alone".  You guys definitely have to check that track out right off the bat; the intro immediately immerses you inside the world of heavy metal, which then slowly transforms into a heavily influenced IRON MAIDEN riff .  "Crystal Tears", on the other hand, is a perfect example that showcases the band's overall talent.  Mike Steel's overpowering and almost "Halford-like" vocals are beautifully executed on this song, all while the dueling guitar leads accentuate the band's devotion and influence of classic heavy metal bands.  

It would be awesome if you guys show your support and purchase the upcoming record, "Darkest Horrors", set to be released on April 29th!

UPDATE: Make sure to vote for STARBLIND to win a free music video for their song "Ascendancy"! Click this link to vote

Rating: 88% (based off of the three teaser tracks)

Tracklist

Starblind Sweden Heavy Metal
Lineup
Mike "Steel" Stark: Vocals
Bjöorn Rosenblad: Guitars
J.J: Guitars
Daniel Tillberg: Bass
Zacke Wikner: Drums

Various - One Take No Dubs (1982)

Various - One Take No Dubs (1982) NWOBHMAlien, Avenger, Black Rose, Hellanbach One Take No Dubs 1982

Band: Alien/Avenger/Black Rose/Hellanbach

Release: One Take No Dubs (Compilation)

Genre: NWOBHM

Country: United Kingdom

Year: 1982

Label: Neat Records



Note
Now this one will certainly be in your playlist for quite some time!  These 4 cult bands of the NWOBHM era showcase their utmost talent through these 4 excruciatingly head-bangin' tracks. What surprised me the most on this release is how FUCKING FAST AND HEAVY some songs are (for 1982 at least); I mean were talking about the ever-so unknown ALIEN showing off their compelling riffs throughout "Could Have Done Better", or maybe the great BLACK ROSE, who seemed to take their speed pills on the day of recording their killer track "Knocked Out".  This is the essence of metal right here: raw, heavy, fast and oh so melodic... just the way I like it!

Tracklist

Rating: 92%

Osiris (Can) - Demos + EP (1986-1993)

Band: Osiris
Release: Compilation of Demos and EP: "Osiris 1st Edition (1986)", "The Hand of Fate (1989)", "Osiris (1992)", "Osiris 2nd Edition EP (1993)"
Genre: Power/Progressive Metal
Country: Canada
Year: 1986-1993
Label: Self-Released
Review
Being a Canadian myself, it's almost impossible not to feel a sense of pride when one of your country's bands decides to create some of the most amazing heavy metal you've ever heard.  With regards to the underground metal scene, Sweden has GOTHAM CITY and HEAVY LOAD, France has SORTILEGE and ADX, Germany has SCANNER and NOT FRAGILE...Canada, on the other hand, has the great OSIRIS (and BLACK KNIGHT of course)!


With a music career spanning 8 years, Osiris have managed to create timeless albums that almost effortlessly capture the magic of early progressive/power metal as heard throughout the United States Power Metal Scene in the mid-80s.  And better yet, all 4 of their main  releases are being included in this download, so you dudes have much to indulge yourselves in.  What amazes me, first off, is the fact that they were all self-released, without, most probably, any backing of a record label; the mere fact that no record labels were interested in signing Osiris still boggles my mind, as they were nothing short of a class act.  Although Jeff Waters of ANNIHILATOR produced their very last EP in 1993, the fact that these guys never properly received almost any recognition is a damn crime.

To say the very least, it is just so hard not to enjoy every single track from all 4 of these releases, and they still very much hold up to this day as being one of my most cherished set of albums released by a single band.  From the heavily progressive "Osiris 1st Edition" and "The Hand of Fate", to the melodic power metal onslaught of the final two records, there is just so much to appreciate.  A couple of my personal favorites at the moment are "As the Story is Told", "Just Me and You", "In Custody" and "The Hand of Fate".

We can't really talk about the underground success of Osiris without mentioning the mastermind behind it all:  Steve Roberts.  Big thanks to him for his sheer musical talent! Now enough with the reading (if you're still reading, that is), and enjoy the hell out of these masterpieces!

Tracklist

Rating: 95%

Osiris Canada Heavy Metal
Lineup
Vocals: Les Sherart (Osiris 1st Edition), Blair Calibaba (The Hand of Fate), Phil Leite (Osiris, Osiris 2nd Edition)
Guitars: Steve Roberts (All releases), Dean Caviglia (Osiris 1st Edition)
Bass: Alan Roberts (All Releases)
Drums: Karl Watt (Osiris 1st Edition, The Hand of Fate)
Keyboards: Don Krabben (Osiris, Osiris 2nd Edition)

Radium - Through the Smoke (1981)

Radium - Through the Smoke (1981) NWOBHM
Band: Radium
Release: Through the Smoke (EP)
Genre: NWOBHM
Country: United Kingdom
Year: 1981
Label: Isotope Records
Download (Mediafire)
Note
This record was recently requested by a fellow follower, and so I thought it would be a great addition to the blog!  Oh man is this one killer, I especially love the second track "Dusty Road"; the gradual transition from a calming and serene intro to a scorching solo-led ending is what easily takes the cake on this number.

Tracklist

Rating: 83%

Radium UK NWOBHM
Lineup
K. Healey: Vocals, Guitars
A. Meehan: Guitars, Vocals
Tonka: Drums
J. Vaites: Bass, Vocals

Paralex - White Lightning (1980)

Paralex - White Lightning (1980) NWOBHM
Band: Paralex
Release: White Lightning (EP)
Genre: NWOBHM
Country: United Kingdom
Year: 1980
Label: Reddingtons Rare Records
Note
This record was requested by one of the good lads here on the blog; big thanks for reminding me about this little piece of NWOBHM history!  Although I'm not too fond of the vocals, the guitar work in itself always keeps me coming back for more.

Tracklist

Rating: 85%

Paralex NWOBHM
Lineup
Phil Ayling: Vocals
Mark Gibson: Guitars, Vocals
Kevin Bower: Guitars
Ian Dobbs: Bass
Neil Bryan: Drums

Hiroshima - Soldier of the World (1983)

Hiroshima - Soldier of the World (1983) Sweden Finland
Band: Hiroshima
Release: Soldier of the World (Single)
Genre: Heavy/Power Metal
Country: Sweden/Finland
Year: 1983
Label: Self-Released
Note
One of my all-time favorite Swedish metal singles alongside the mighty Gotham City single released in 1982.  Both tracks are just absolutely mind-blowing, I cannot stress this enough!  Some of you may already know the "Soldier of the World" track from Hiroshima's debut record (which can be found here), and I must say the quality and the overall orchestration of the song in the single is far superior.  The second track, "Nuclear Nightmare", easily solidifies the talent that this band once brewed (man I still can't get that chorus out of my head!).  Hail the hell out of these dudes!  
  
Tracklist

Rating: 98%

Hiroshima Sweden Finland Heavy Metal
Lineup
Tony Hedin: Vocals
Kari Varonen: Guitars
 Ismo Varonen: Guitars
Jouko Kinnunen: Bass
Raimo Pikanen: Drums

Tytan - Rough Justice (1985)

Tytan - Rough Justice (1985) NWOBHM
Band: Tytan
Release: Rough Justice (Full-Length)
Genre: NWOBHM
Country: United Kingdom
Year: 1985
Label: Metal Masters
Download (Mediafire)
Note
Tytan was a fairly short-lived band that was formed by ex-Angel Witch bassist Kevin Riddles, who performed on their eponymous LP from 1980, as well as many demos and singles.  Now, for starters, Tytan is a completely change of pace as to what Angel Witch is known for; Tytan is, overall, more upbeat, more energetic and certaintly less melancholic.  "Rough Justice", posthumously released 2 years after the band's split, is a culmination of classic NWOBHM, and man are there tons of highlights on this one!  The first track, and probably their most well-known one, "Blind Men and Fools", almost entirely focuses on Kal Swan's vocals throughout the compelling and fist-pounding chorus, which perfectly overlaps the amazing guitar work.  This exact formula is embedded in every single track and makes this record that much more memorable.  Now go on and crank the hell out of this powerhouse!

Tracklist


Highlights: "Blind Men and Fools", "Cold Bitch", "Ballad of Edward Case", "The Watcher", "Far Cry", "Don't Play Their Way", "Far Side of Destiny"

Rating: 92%

Tytan UK NWOBHM
Lineup
Kal Swan: Vocals
Steve Gibbs: Guitars, Vocals
Kevin Skidz Riddles: Bass, Keyboards, Vocals
Les Binks/Simon Wright: Drums
Steve Mann/Dave Harrison: Guitars, Vocals

Airbridge (UK) - Words and Pictures (1983)

Airbridge (UK) - Words and Pictures (1983)
Band: Airbridge
Release: Words and Pictures (Single)
Genre: NWOBHM/Hard Rock
Country: United Kingdom
Year: 1983
Label: Rattees Records
Note
A very interesting release by a virtually unknown band.  Airbridge, in short, plays an unusual mix of progressive rock and the classic NWOBHM sound we all know and love.  The title track is what will keep you guys coming back for more!

Tracklist

Rating: 80%

Airbridge UK NWOBHM Hard Rock
Lineup
Edward Percival: Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards
Lorenzo Bedini: Guitars, Keyboards Vocals 
Sean Godfrey: Bass, Vocals
 David Beckett: Drums
Stephen J Bennett: Keyboards

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