Sure, we've all worn out our Ozzy and Iron Maiden albums - but if we dig a little deeper there are some real gems out there, just waiting to be discovered.
The Unreal Never Lived
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Before the term "grunge" became a catch-all slogan to describe any Alice In Chains or Pearl Jam rip-off, Seattle was first and foremost a Heavy Metal town. Mountlake Terrace thrashers, Forced Entry, should have been up there with the Big Four (Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth and Anthrax). In fact, they were better than two of those four - much better. I'll leave it up to you to figure out who I mean, but their names rhyme with Smegadeth and Banthrax. These guys were like a combination of "Ride the Lightning" era Metallica and "Dimension Hatross" era Voivod. Sad that they never made it past their second full-length album, "As Above, So Below", which is easily as good as this one, their debut. see more on Uncertain Future
The "forgotten" Sab album. This is the one after Dio left and Ian Gillan of Deep Purple stepped in. Highly underrated and undeservedly obscure. Highlights include "Zero the Hero", "Disturbing the Priest" and the atmospheric title track. Sadly, Gillan departed after this one phenomenal album. see more on Born Again
More a legend than a band (I think I ripped that off from The Flatlanders), Tom G. Warrior of Celtic Frost first groaned and moaned about killing, raping and puking in the name of Satan in the band Hellhammer under the name "Satanic Slaughter". Wretchedly underproduced and incredibly grating on the ears - and I mean that in a GOOD way. Seek it out IMMEDIATELY. Play it for your mom!
Blackened Death-Thrash? Whatever. Call it what you will, this is the new guard of Metal and it rules. Fast, loud and scary. see more on Beyond the Permafrost
What's this record all aboot? Oh, it's from Canada, eh? Heh. Devin Townsend has been produced some of the most complex and interesting music in the genre for some time now. Any SYL album will suffice - I just pulled this one out of the hat. see more on The New Black
A Lullaby for the Devil
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All of Voivod's amazing albums are underrated and under appreciated, in my opinion. Like the Strapping Young Lad record, I just randomly pulled up a Voivod disc - in this case, this woefully unheard second album. Motorhead/Venom worship with a tinge of the sci-fi progressive leanings they really started to experiment with on their next LP, "Killing Technology". This one, like the Hellhammer, is wonderfully Lo-Fi and gnarly as f**k. To The Death! see more on Rrröööaaarrr