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1741 reviews/ratings
BLACK SABBATH - Black Sabbath Heavy Metal | review permalink
BLACK SABBATH - Paranoid Heavy Metal | review permalink
THE STOOGES - Fun House Proto-Metal | review permalink
THE STOOGES - Raw Power Proto-Metal | review permalink
BLUE ÖYSTER CULT - Secret Treaties Hard Rock | review permalink
KISS - Alive! Hard Rock | review permalink
JUDAS PRIEST - Sad Wings Of Destiny Heavy Metal | review permalink
RUSH - A Farewell to Kings Hard Rock | review permalink
RUSH - Permanent Waves Hard Rock | review permalink
MOTÖRHEAD - Ace of Spades Heavy Metal | review permalink
RUSH - Moving Pictures Hard Rock | review permalink
IRON MAIDEN - The Number Of The Beast NWoBHM | review permalink
MERCYFUL FATE - Don't Break the Oath Heavy Metal | review permalink
METALLICA - Ride the Lightning Thrash Metal | review permalink
IRON MAIDEN - Powerslave NWoBHM | review permalink
METALLICA - Master of Puppets Thrash Metal | review permalink
CANDLEMASS - Epicus Doomicus Metallicus Traditional Doom Metal | review permalink
SLAYER - Reign in Blood Thrash Metal | review permalink
KING DIAMOND - Abigail Heavy Metal | review permalink
TROUBLE - Run to the Light Traditional Doom Metal | review permalink

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Metal Genre Nb. Rated Avg. rating
1 Non-Metal 151 3.88
2 Heavy Metal 146 3.66
3 Progressive Metal 138 3.62
4 Black Metal 123 3.83
5 Hard Rock 114 3.45
6 Thrash Metal 81 3.77
7 Power Metal 79 3.44
8 Metal Related 66 3.53
9 Atmospheric Black Metal 64 3.90
10 Death Metal 59 3.98
11 Gothic Metal 56 3.35
12 Doom Metal 54 3.76
13 Proto-Metal 52 3.60
14 Traditional Doom Metal 45 3.89
15 US Power Metal 41 3.46
16 Stoner Metal 38 3.78
17 Avant-garde Metal 38 3.78
18 Industrial Metal 33 3.44
19 Symphonic Black Metal 30 3.20
20 Technical Death Metal 25 3.84
21 Melodic Death Metal 25 3.96
22 Melodic Black Metal 22 3.93
23 Death-Doom Metal 22 4.14
24 Atmospheric Sludge Metal 20 3.98
25 Hardcore Punk 19 4.21
26 Heavy Psych 16 4.09
27 Funeral Doom Metal 15 3.70
28 Folk Metal 14 3.32
29 Symphonic Metal 14 3.04
30 NWoBHM 13 4.23
31 Alternative Metal 12 3.33
32 Technical Thrash Metal 12 4.13
33 Sludge Metal 11 3.95
34 Speed Metal 11 3.73
35 Depressive Black Metal 10 3.75
36 Drone Metal 9 4.00
37 Funk Metal 9 3.78
38 Groove Metal 8 3.63
39 Viking Metal 8 3.63
40 Crust Punk 7 2.93
41 Brutal Death Metal 5 3.70
42 Grindcore 5 4.10
43 Death 'n' Roll 4 4.50
44 Crossover Thrash 2 4.50
45 Glam Metal 2 2.50
46 Pagan Black Metal 2 3.50
47 Nu Metal 2 4.00
48 Metalcore 2 3.00
49 War Metal 2 3.00
50 Stoner Rock 2 3.50
51 Neoclassical metal 1 4.00
52 Heavy Alternative Rock 1 3.00
53 Mathcore 1 3.00

Latest Albums Reviews

OPETH The Candlelight Years

Boxset / Compilation · 2008 · Death Metal
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This is a convenient way of collecting Opeth's first three albums all in one fell swoop. Though Morningrise is far and away the best album here, the other two albums presented are nice bonuses on top of that star attraction; Orchid captures the band in the process of gradually finding their sound, whilst My Arms, Your Hearse has a bleak, almost black metal-inspired aesthetic which makes it perhaps Opeth's darkest and murkiest release. Each disc has a few bonus tracks, giving a full overview of the band's earliest era, making this a good purchase so long as you're happy with not getting the full artwork.


Live album · 2009 · Heavy Metal
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For their first live album following the return of Rob Halford, Priest offer up edited highlights of the tours for Angel of Retribution and Nostradamus, with a focus on songs which hadn't appeared on a Halford-fronted Judas Priest live release previously. The end result is very good - Priest have always been a stellar live band - but precisely because of the approach taken in picking songs, it doesn't really reflect an actual live setlist or flow like a live show. (There's entirely undisguised fade-outs between some songs, for instance.) As a result, it's good to dip into if you really want to hear Halford singing one of these tracks live, but I don't put it on the level of their best live albums of the past.

RUSH Sector 3

Boxset / Compilation · 2011 · Non-Metal
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The third "Sector" boxed set from Rush delivers fresh new remasters of their 1980s synth-era, taking in the studio albums from Signals to Hold Your Fire and the live album A Show of Hands.

I think there's no question that of the three Sector boxes, Sector 2 was the one which covers the most essential era of Rush, but I'd actually rank Sector 3 above Sector 1. Sector 1 has got 2112, of course, but arguably it was only really on 2112 that Rush started firing on all cylinders (though Fly By Night deserves an honourable mention), and albums like their debut or Caress of Steel showed stark growing pains.

On the other hand, whilst the synth era of the band rather sputtered out, they did at least have a cohesive musical vision all the way through it; the first two albums were very good, and I think Power Windows gets a slightly raw deal, and it was only really Hold Your Fire which wasn't pulling its weight there. Getting all of them, sounding better than they have for ages, plus a live album, in nicely-presented LP replica sleeves? Can't hurt.

RUSH A Show of Hands

Live album · 1989 · Non-Metal
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As had become traditional for Rush by this point, after four studio albums they brought out this live piece to summarise this particular era of their career ranging from Signals to Hold Your Fire. This is an era which started out strong but started to flag towards the end, with Hold Your Fire finding the approach wearing thin, but fortunately the live versions of the material from that album (and the somewhat better-liked but still contentious Power Windows) show a bit more flair and style than their studio renditions.

Unfortunately, compared to their two preceding live albums Rush had less scope for throwing out any curve balls. With only three musicians onstage, and a lot of the songs in question requiring more simultaneous synth and guitar Alex Lifeson could handle all at once (the man only has the two arms, after all!), on these tours the synth parts had to be largely preprogammed, more or less killing any scope they had to introduce any variation into the songs.

As a result, the album ends up being a little lifeless, an exercise in playing the songs from the albums more or less how you remember them from the studio editions; at some points only a bit of crowd noise mixed in here and there gives the impression that the band are live at all . Perhaps hiring a guest musician or two to provide backup on the synths might have made for a more organic experience, but then again the trio's chemistry has always been so tight that incorporating more musicians into it would be a dangerous proposition indeed.

Alternately, if the album had included more 80s performances of less synth-dominated parts of their back catalogue it might have gone better - it closes with a reasonable rendition of Closer to the Heart, and the difference between that track the program-locked material before it is striking. But then again, All the World's a Stage and Exit Stage Left had already covered all the best songs from prior eras, and there seems to have been an effort made to avoid duplicating songs presented on those two; I can certainly see the logic behind that, and to some that might make A Show of Hands better value, but at the same time I think it does risk steering into the constraints the band were under.

In short, by this stage of their career Rush had written themselves into a corner with their live albums, in that everyone was expecting this release to focus on the tracks from Signals to Grace but the fact was that the songs in question just didn't lend themselves well to live performances. The album's saved by the fact that for the most part they give solid, energetic renditions of the material, and it's impressive just how much they can nail the non-synth parts live, but it's best to come this if you want a quick "best of synth-era Rush" rundown, not because you want a live album which actually sounds live.

PENDRAGON Concerto Maximo

Live album · 2009 · Metal Related
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Concerto Maximo captures a Pendragon concert in Poland - where they've enjoyed strong support since the early 1990s, and so could be assured of a friendly crowd - which happened hot on the heels of the release of Pure. So fresh was the Pure material, in fact, that despite wanting to play Indigo the band decided to leave it off the set this time because they simply hadn't had time to rehearse a live performance of it.

Still, the new album is well-represented by Eraserhead, Freak Show, and It's Only Me: the real question here is how the Pure cuts end up slotting in alongside earlier material, given the shift in sound that album presented. As it happens, it works out fine. It helps that this is new drummer Scott Higham's first live album with the band, and his more forceful style already helps give a new twist to the old songs, and the band show good taste in where to tweak their older material to better fit the new style (the version of Walls of Babylon here teases out a disquiet not evident in the original, for instance) and where to keep things true to their former approach (The Voyager being a good example of the latter).

The end result is a set which skillfully interweaves old and new material to more clearly reveal the Pure material as an evolution of what came before, and to tease something new out of the well-worn songs. With each studio album from as far back as Kowtow represented, plus a deep cut in the form of Sister Bluebird from the Fallen Dreams and Angels EP, it packs in a wide variety of material, and with a running time of some two and a half hours you get a nice substantial concert for your money. Indeed, it feels a little long - had it been trimmed back a bit more you'd have an amazing two hours here, but I find myself flagging partway through - not enough to write this off, but enough to stop it being an outright classic.

Latest Forum Topic Posts

  • Posted 8 months ago in A name for "progressive metal punk?"
    If most of the examples LightningRider's thinking of are usually described as some flavour of 'core, why not just go with "progcore"?
  • Posted more than 2 years ago in Sean Reinert R.I.P.
    An ugly coda to the story: despite strongly believing in organ donation, and despite the fact that he was clean of STDs, Sean's wish to donate his organs was denied simply because he was a gay man with a normal, active sex life:https://www.metalsucks.net/2020/02/11/sean-reinerts-organ-donor-request-was-denied-because-of-his-sexual-orientation/If any of us want to do some small thing in Sean's memory, I'd say making a monetary donation to a charity that supports transplant patients wouldn't be a terrible idea.
  • Posted more than 2 years ago in Favorite Mk. II-era Electric Wizard album?
    I'm pretty keen on Time To Die myself, but I could understand voting for any of those albums - they're so consistent.I agree with UMUR though - doing the poll this way is more interesting because if we took in their whole career, Dopethrone would beat out everything by a mile.


Please login to post a shout
Stephen wrote:
more than 2 years ago
agree, welcome to the site and please keep them coming friend
UMUR wrote:
more than 2 years ago
You write some really good quality reviews. I hope to see more from you in the future.


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