Wednesday, 27 November 2013

The Metal Project: Metal Made In Hell

Q: What the hell is this "Metal Project" thing you keep blathering on about?
A: Easy. I look for Heavy Metal songs that have "Metal" in the title.

Q: All of them?

A: Well I don't do bedroom projects (Unless I like them.) I don't do instrumentals (Unless I like them) 

and I don't do NSBM if I can help it (Because I don't want anything to do with that Nazi shit.)

 Because I'm in a particularly foul mood for some reason, this time around we're going with stuff from the realms of Black Metal, Death Metal, Thrash Metal and anything else that hates you and wants to make your ears bleed. 
 Brace yourselves, boys and girls.
This is gonna get ugly. 

The Crown - Death Metal Holocaust (Sweden 2004)

Honour to: henrikw84

Quintessenz- Black Metal Holocaust (Germany 2013)

Iron Gang - Speed Metal Made In Hell (Colombia 2008)

Honour to: drunkardfox

Fornication - Fist F****ing Black Metal (France 2002)

Honour to: PartyWithSatan

Cadaver - Decomposed Metal Skin (Norway 2004)

Honour to: shrederkiller

Blackrider - Full Metal Madness (Mexico 2013)

Honour to: /PossessedByMetal

And to finish this one seems appropriate.

Abigail - Final Metal Attack (Japan 2009)

Honour to: PartyWithSatan

That's all folks.

Sunday, 24 November 2013

Heavy Metal Cover Girls: Turning Away

 For today's post the theme is: Girls who have their back to the artist.
 I'm not entirely sure why this is so common. The cynic in me suggests that some artists are uncomfortable drawing faces but if you look at the selection below, you'll see that there's some fantastic artwork on display.
   Don't get me started on how many metal album covers are just a close-up of a woman's bum.

  Anyway, here's a small selection of lovely ladies contemplating...stuff on the horizon.
I promise that all of them are wearing clothes.
Maybe not a lot of clothes but at least they aren't streaking.

Silent Force -Walk The Earth(Germany 2007)

metal cover  harem girl
Hopefully the portal doesn't actually dump her into earth's upper atmosphere otherwise this could get messy.

Payload - Odyssey Dawn (Finland 2013)

girl on swing
She seems strangely casual about the imminent nuclear destruction. 
It is entirely possible she caused it. 
Some people are really good at holding a grudge.

The next one is a bit sketchier in execution but I quite like it for some reason.

Legion Warcry - The Way To Escape (Italy 2012)

woman looking through magic mirror
Is it a window? A magic mirror?  Either way, wherever it's showing, she can never go back there.

 HB - The Battle Of God (Finland 2011)

metal album woman warrior
I have no idea why she's wearing a stocking on her arm. Hardy Boyz fan, maybe?

Evershine - Renewal (Italy 2011)

woman orbital laser
Personally I'd be legging it at this point. Whatever that is, it's unlikely to be good.
The last one is more AOR but what the hell, it fits the theme.

Two Of a Kind (NLD? 2007)

 girl corset facing away
 Ah, the dangers of strapless corsets.She's never wearing it again without judicious application of double-sided tape.
Incidentally, how come there's only one person on the cover? You'd expect...two..maybe?
(Snarking aside, I own this album and it's not bad.)

That's all folks.

Thursday, 21 November 2013

The Dog Who Loved Apples.

 I remember the first time I met Coco. 
  He had been living in a barn and fed whenever his previous owners could be bothered. As a result he was painfully thin with bald patches the size of my fist across his back and sides.
"Anxiety" said the vet from the rescue centre.
 That first night  I lay in my bed and listened to Coco pacing from room to room downstairs, whimpering because there was nobody around and he thought we'd abandoned him.
 He did that the next night.
And the night after that.

Monday, 18 November 2013

Terrible Metal Album Covers - Chapter 21

  I apologise for the extended layoff but a combination of work and other things meant the blog got put on the back burner for a bit.  I know, let's look at some more godawful Heavy Metal/Hard Rock album covers, shall we?
 As always, a terrible album cover does not mean the band are also bad - just in dire need of a new graphics team.

Death Mask - Split The Atom (USA 1986)

The experimental Tonsil-Removal laser worked magnificently. 
Pity about the side effects.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

The Metal Project: Demo Days

The Metal Project: Finding Heavy Metal songs about Metal since 2011. 
Well I needed a hobby.

  Once upon a time, way before Myspace and Youtube and Facebook, an aspiring young band would record a few songs onto a cassette tape, paste on a photocopied label and flog them at gigs. In time a vigorous tape-trading scene emerged, passing cassette from fan to fan. Through this, some bands went on to make a name for themselves. Others never got that call. 
This post is dedicated to them. 
Obviously the sound quality is going to be somewhat less than polished but hopefully we may just unearth a few gems. Enjoy.

Low Valley - You're Heavy Metal (Portugal  1984)

Honour to: rumblephist

Rigor Mortis - Metalstorm   (Germany 1985)

Honour to: RigorMortis198588

Teacher's Pett - Metal Soldiers (USA 1986)

Honour to: SlauterXstroyes

Angelkillers - Fighting For Metal (Italy 1984)

Honour to: DisciplineOfSteel

Incidentally the lead singer for that track is listed as "Screaming Beast"
I felt you might like to know this. 

Bad Heaven - Metal On Metal (USA 1985)

Honour to: SlauterXstroyes

Charter- Princess De Metal (France 1984)

Honour to: metallife78

Saratoga - United Metal (NLD 1990)

Honour to: heavymetaller1978

And finally a band that did go on to bigger and better things. 

Death - Dead By Metal (USA 1984)

(An early outing for the Death Metal pioneers)
Honour to: ledzeprox666666

That's all folks

Saturday, 9 November 2013

150,000 Pageviews. Wow.

 When I first set up this blog, it was purely because I wanted somewhere to talk about things that interested me. I couldn't quite work out what exactly I wished to discuss so eventually thought "The hell with it. Let's talk about everything." And so it was.
 I can definitely remember my absolute delight when I saw the pageview counter begin to click up.
"Brilliant." I thought "People who aren't me are actually reading this thing."
 So imagine how pleased I was when I looked over at the pageview counter this morning and saw it had gone past the 150K mark.

 Cheers guys. Thanks for stopping by.
And to everybody that left comments and plugged me on their blogs - here's an enormous thumbs up to: 

Dale Cooper   Janene   Helena   Fortissima   Ian Cochrane  
Louis Van Deven   Jersey Lil   Jayme Art   Ani Krishna
Nothingprofound   Dan Bonser   Umashankar   PBScott
Unikorna   Rum-Punch Drunk   JKweath   Ian C
Sci-Fi-Gene   Charlene Lyon   Plastic Mancunian   Kevin D'Arcy  
Melanie Jean Juneau   Rich Red   Annie  Nimsy
Scorpion Sting  Phil Holtberg  Mike Pease  Neil Killion
Buffalo Theory MTL Robert Morschel
Kyle  William T Co   Darrin L Hammond  Anastasia F-B
My Travel Affairs  Sabre  Paul Worthington Gelaibee
Furita Rhapsados  White Widdow   The Wrestling Doctor

As well as:
Everybody over at BlogCatalog and all the Youtube Metalheads whose videos made The Metal Project possible.  

Just for the hell of it (and because I've been looking for an excuse to post it) here's a pic of the lovely Jinxy - keyboardist/vocalist with German Gothic Ghouls Santa Hates You
 And here she is, managing to look gorgeous, if rather disturbing, in one of their music vids.

 That's all folks

Thursday, 7 November 2013

Three Anime in need of a DVD release.

 DVD quite possibly saved the UK anime scene. (That and torrenting, obviously) but during the switchover, a lot of good titles got forgotten about.
As to why, there's probably all sorts of good reasons - licensing issues, labels preferring to release new material, Illuminati intervention - but wouldn't it be nice if you could sit down and watch the following without tracking errors and tape-snow?
 Here's a few things I'd quite like to see back on sale. For the time being I've restricted myself to things that actually got a UK video release first time around. (Some of them do have a US DVD but that's not the same, is it? )
 In no particular order:

Wicked City

 An uneasy truce between the Human and Demon worlds is protected by agents from both sides. With the treaty up for renewal and terrorists bent on unleashing hell on earth, a human and a beautiful demon woman are paired up to protect the one man crucial to the peace process. Pity he's such a dick.

 Normally I loathe "Tits and tentacle" horror anime with a passion but although this one is violent and sometimes downright disturbing, (oh dear gods, there's some places that should never have gnashing teeth) "Wicked City" has more going for it than shock value.
 The character designs are quite angular and take a bit of getting used to but it is nice to see female characters that are obviously meant to be grown women. Female lead Maki is cool, collected and competent and although some horrible things happen to her, keeps getting back up to get stuck in again.
 Male lead Taki is a bit of a knob sometimes but is likewise competent and it is nice seeing their initial sparring evolve into something warmer.
 The bad guys are like something HP Lovecraft would come up with if he got talking with HR Giger after a dose of absinth and then there's the Spider Woman...
 Actually, let's not talk about her. I watched this the other day and after that scene it took a crowbar to get my legs uncrossed again.
Wicked City is probably best not watched with company but if you like the darker end of the spectrum, this is worth seeing.

El-Hazard - The Magnificent World (OAV series)

  A mysterious woman transports three Japanese pupils and their borderline-alkie teacher to a fantastic new world. A world facing something of a crisis. El-Hazard desperately needs a way to stop the invading Bugrom insect-men and to do that involves teenager Makoto dressing up as ..erm..a Princess.

 A cross-dressing hero... a beautiful woman who is really a Weapon of Mass Destruction and who has to be wound up on a regular basis...adorable living armour..spies and giant bugs and priestesses and romance and humour and a giant purple hippo...

This series is certainly inventive. Admittedly the story is the usual "Where the hell are we and why do these people think we're here to save them?" thing we've been seeing since The Wizard Of Oz but it's done with panache and some absolutely glorious Arabian-inspired design work.
 Considering this series is stuffed full of memorable, dynamic female characters it's a nice touch that they manage to make hero Makoto,  nutjob Jinnai and drunken slob Fujisawa-Sensei strong enough to hang with the girls without coming off as wimps or macho douchenozzles.
    An additional bonus is the excellent English dub which features the most crazed laugh in animation history.  
 One of the best things Pioneer ever released in the UK and if you like "Tenchi Muyo", there's a pretty good chance you'll like this.
 Since I am a massive fan of lethal - but curiously sympathetic -  War-Doll Ifurita, in lieu of a trailer here's a tribute AMV somebody did. In Russian but it still works.
Honour to: xurd666

Macross - Do You Remember Love?

  The SDF-1 Space Fortress and her ill-assorted mixture of crew and civilians were left stranded in space after an engine test went haywire. After fighting off wave upon wave of hostile aliens, the Macross has finally come home to Earth, only to find the militaristic Zentraedi have got there first.
 Meanwhile, young fighter pilot Hikaru and aspiring singer Lynn Minmay find themselves thrown together by circumstances. What neither of them realise is that the Zentraedi have taken a special interest in the young songstress...

 The Macross tv series was a massive hit in Japan and (after some heavy re-editing) later in the USA so a big-budget movie was inevitable.
 Considering this film dates from 1984 it still stands up well. The Macross franchise has always been based on the three pillars of Love, Music... and freaking awesome fighter jets that turn into giant robots. All are present and correct.
 At the core of the story is the relationship between Hikaru and Minmay, which gets complicated when no-nonsense officer Misa enters play. Unlike a lot of other movie love triangles, this never seems tacked-on.
Music... Ahh now this is a definite strong point. The orchestral score is majestic all the way through and then you get one of the most peculiarly Japanese moments in anime history when Minmay wins over an entire enemy fleet with a love song.
It makes sense in context.
 And just in case this film is sounding sappy, there's the semi-legendary transforming Mecha and some classic anime dogfighting. The short, vicious Mecha duel between human ace Max and alien giantess  Millia being a particular highlight. As is the spectacular final battle.
 "Macross-Do You Remember Love" was released on VHS by Kiseki but when they fell off the face of the earth nobody was in a hurry to pick up the DVD rights. Since the original Japanese  companies have spent the last couple of decades in legal trench warfare, I can't see anybody wanting to get involved in that mess anytime soon.
  Rather than posting the trailer, here's that dogfight I was talking about. 

  I was originally going to do this as a Top Ten but since the piece was already getting rather long, I thought I'd best chop it off here.

 There's a few others I can think of that I might cover at a later date: Wings of Honneamise. Venus Wars. Genesis Surviver Gaiarth...

Then of course there's a lot of stuff that never got a UK release that should have done.  The second Urusei Yatsura movie immediately springing to mind.

So, anybody out there got any suggestions?  I'd love to hear them.

  That's all folks.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

Comic: Vampire Vixens Of The Wehrmacht (2013)

sexy nazi vampire
Created by Alex Ronald. Written by The Emperor and Alex Ronald. Art by Alex Ronald

 May 1940.  Britain stands alone against the Nazi War Machine.  As if things weren't bad enough, Churchill learns that the Germans have terrifying new allies. Vampires.
   Through cunning use of the Black Arts, one of these vampires is enticed over to serve the British cause.  Now the Special Occult Executive's newest agent and her reluctant human partner are off to retrieve a very special magical artifact.  

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