Welcome to Source of Steel - The Heavy Metal Museum. For the metal head who likes to own or collect physical CDs, Source of Steel is my website dedicated to the love of physical metal on shiny plastic discs. Micro-reviews, thoughts, pics of my own collection and random utterances galore. The site started out purely as a way of sharing my rarities to like-minded fans, but now (for longevity's sake more than anything) it is open to new physical metal music bits I've picked up, including new releases and other random shit.

Nembrionic - Psycho One Hundred

Debut album from these Dutch death metallers. Released on Displeased Records, and now out of print.

Deathwitch - Triumphant Devastation

The much sought after debut from these excellent blackened thrashers from the Sweden. Pretty hard to come by these days. Released on Desecration Records.

Maleficarum - Across the Heavens

This is the debut album from these Italian death metallers. Released on Defiled Records, one of many thousand tiny record labels who have fallen by the wayside throughout the years.

Christ Agony - Daemoonseth: Act II

Sophomore album from these Polish black metallers. Lots of melody, lots of good ideas. Not a well known band, but they've done some great stuff over the years. This is the original pressing on Adipocere Records.

Azag-Thoth - Reign Supreme

Another Swiss band on Witchhunt Productions. This was the bands only release (so far as I'm aware, anyway). Out of print.

Corporal Punishment - Profaned Relics

The debut full length release from these deathly Finns. They had a sound which shared some similarities to Bolt Thrower at times, but not quite as excellent. Pretty much a poor man's version I guess. Anyway, hard to come across these days, even though it was released on one of the bigger metal labels - Spinefarm.

Dark Heresy - Abstract Principles Taken To Their Logical Extremes

The only full length from these English technical death metallers. Pretty good stuff, considering just how unknown they are - even here in Britain. This was released on Unisound Records.

Catholicon - Lost Chronicles of the War in Heaven

Debut album of this recently defunct US band. Very distinct sound these guys had. This was the 2001 pressing on Black Hand (which became Rage of Achilles).

Amon - Shemhamforash

The only full length album from this short lived Swiss band. Pretty tasty, angry death/black hatred. Released on the now defunct Witchhunt Productions.

Akhenaton - Divine Symphonies

...and here is the only album the guy from Daemonium went to release under this moniker - very much in the same vein as his previous work in fact with maybe a little less ambient. Also released on Adipocere Records and now out of print.

Daemonium - Dark Opera Of The Ancient War Spirit

The one and only album from this one man French band. Released on Adipocere Records, now out of print. The guy later went on to disband this product to become the band Akhenaton.

Agony Lords - The Sun of the Cursed

Debut album from these Mexican death metallers, released on Oz Productions. Now out of print.

Slammer - Nightmare Scenario

Second album from these Brit thrashers. Pretty good stuff actually, well worth looking into (as is their debut). This is the Heavy Metal Records pressing, pretty hard to come across at a decent price these days.

Doomstone - Those Whom Satan Hath Joined

This is the debut album of these deathly heavy doomers from the US. Featuring King Fowley of Deceased. First pressing on Nosferatu Records.

Noctes - Pandemonic Requiem

Yet more Swedes! These guys play a melodic brand of Black Metal though, very much in the vein of a lot of the early No Fashion bands. Thus, you'll be surprised to read that this was also released on No Fashion records.

Sarcasm - A Touch of the Burning Red Sunset

Another bunch of Swedes here, this time with a compilation of demo material. This was released on Andrew Harris' (a.k.a Akhenaton from Judas Iscariot) label Breath of Night records. Now out of print.

Uncanny - Splenium For Nyktophobia

The only full length album from these excellent Swedes. The band that were later to give Fredrik Norrman to Katatonia. This was released on Unisound Records.

Yattering - Human's Pain

This is an original pressing on tiny Polish label Moonlight Productions.

Yattering are a bit of a weird one. They started out as a quite ordinary Polish tech-death metal band, until they released their last couple of albums, which saw them gradually slip straight down the abnormality chute, culminating in the album 'III', which was some fucking awful dance remix album along the lines of Avulsed's 'Cybergore' embarrassment. Needless to say, they split soon afterwards, for the good of all mankind. Anyhow, rewind to their debut 'Human's Pain', and we find Yattering actually creating some pretty good music, capturing them at their best.

Kicking off with an overly long, pointless intro, the album truly kicks into gear with 'The Feeling' – reeking of prime Polish death through and through. Coming across like the little brother of Devilyn, Lost Soul and Decapitated all rolled into one prime punishing machine, 'Human's Pain' can (on occasion) tear off your face and wipe its arse on it. The dual vocal assault can get a little tiresome at times, similarly to those heard used on the later 'death metal' era Extreme Noise Terror releases, but is generally bearable. However, it was the angry waspish soloing, outlandish bass-work and a veritable battery of drum-kit abuse that hurled Yattering into a lot of fans' 'next big thing' polls in the year of its release (me included), which is a shame seeing as it only went downhill for them from this point on. On the odd occasion throughout, they sound as if they may soon be threatening to rub shoulders with the crème de la crème of death metal, however it never really comes into fruition. The absurd speeds and overall hateful spiteful feel of the album was only marred by a lack of true spark to really get your blood pumping. The album does have some fucking brilliant parts to be fair, but these are overshadowed by the mediocre sections after sitting through it.

So, Yattering were a band with the talent and professionalism to really go places, only to be let down by their own musical noodlings in future releases, and lack of spark. Such is life. A slightly above average Death metal album from a very average Death metal band.

Grievance - Grievance E.P

This E.P is actually pretty sweet. Grievance are Norwegian, and sound very much like mid-period Emperor in places. This is the original press on Head Not Found records. A good listen, if you can find it.

Organic Infest - Penitence

This is the debut full length album from these Puerto Rican death metallers from deep within the underground. This was released on the incredibly unfortunate JL America label, who seemingly were unable to arrange a piss up at a brewery. Just check out that psychedelic cover art. If you stare at it long enough, you can see a stereographic 3D picture. True story. ;-)

Warlord U.K. - Maximum Carnage

Debut full length album from these recently re-formed English death metallers. Original pressing on Nuclear Blast.

Emit - A Sword of Death for the Prince

Only full length album from these horrible fucks. Released on Total Holocaust Records, limited to 1,000 copies (so I believe).

Mortician - Mortal Massacre

This is the first issue on CD of Mortician's greatest (in my opinion, at least) release - Mortal Massacre. This was re-issued with 'House by the Cemetary', but this is the early pressing with bonus demo and live tracks to make it into a full length release. Not rare by any means, but out of print in this form.

Psycroptic - The Isle of Disenchantment

This is the very first pressing of the debut album of these crazy technical death metallers from Tasmania. I believe this is still in print and available, but this first pressing is still a rarity in itself.

Desultory - Into Eternity

The debut album of this great Swedish death metal act. They kinda went downhill after this release, but this is worth looking into for sure. Produced by (surprise!) Tomas Skogsberg, no less. This is an original pressing on Metal Blade.

Thanatos - Emerging from the Netherworlds & Realm Of Ecstasy

The debut and sophomore albums of these dutch death metallers. The debut is the re-issue on 'Unveiling the Wicked' (a sublabel of Hammerheart Records) which was limited to 1,000, and the second album is an original pressing on Shark Records. Both now out of print.

Morpheus Descends - Chronicles of the Shadowed Ones

The 2nd and final full length album release from these dominating US death metal masters. This was self released, so is pretty hard to come across these days.

Mordaehoth - Bloedwraak - Verdoem Al 't Christelijk Leven

The only full length release from this Dutch one man black metal band. Released on New Era Productions, now out of print.

Nachtmystium - Reign of the Malicious & Nachtmystium E.P

Remember these guys before they liked Pink Floyd more than Darkthrone? This was the first re-issue of Nachtmystium's debut album, re-issued with their self titled E.P on Desire of Goat records (limited to 500 hand numbered copies).

Solefald - The Linear Scaffold

The debut album of this Norwegian duo, in an original pressing on Avantgarde records in 1997. This has later been re-issued again (in 2007, I believe) on Avantgarde, but this is the very first press. The band's best release, in my own opinion.

Solitude Aeturnus - Beyond the Crimson Horizon

The sophomore album of these doom masters. This is the original first pressing, released on Roadracer Records in 1992.

Kvist - For Kunsten Maa Vi Evig Vike

Just about every black metal fan worth their salt will already have this in their collection. This is the original pressing on Avantgarde Music.

Desastrious - Loekr inn Niflheim

The only full length album from this one man black metal band, hand numbered to 1,000 copies on Desastrious Records. Weird thing is, even though the guy is an American from the US, the songs are almost entirely sung in Norwegian. Go figure.

Diabolique - The Green Goddess

The final album of the gothy project of Kristian Wåhlin (a.k.a Necrolord). S'OK soundwise, if you're into that sorta thing. I happened to pick this up on a blind purchase - it's not usually my kinda music. It's now out of print (it was released on the now defunct Necropolis Records).

Daemon - Seven Deadly Sins

Here's another CD that's out of print, but not particularly hard to come across. Well worth looking into if you're into the early Scandinavian death metal sound. For those who aren't aware, this is a coalition of Nicke Andersson (formerly of Entombed, now of Death Breath) and Anders Lundemark (Konkhra). This is my favourite out of their 3 albums.

Cemetary - An Evil Shade of Grey

I can't believe Black Mark would allow such a classic to go out of print, but apparently that's the case with this little baby. Guess it's some sort of licensing issue. The debut of Swedish death metallers Cemetary was also the last release to feature their old sound, later moving to something with a lot more of a gothic edge.

Martyr - Hopeless Hopes

The debut album by these technical death metallers. A nice mixture of sounds, mainly coming through as later-period Death. This is the original pressing released by the band themselves (though the album was re-pressed in 2006 by Galy Records). Good stuff.

Mysticum - In the Streams of Inferno & Lost Masters of the Universe

These guys need no introduction. Famed for their techno/industrial styled black metal, they released one official full length album (featured here on Full Moon Productions with alternate cover art). Also, here we have a compilation of other material by the band.

The Funeral Orchestra - Feeding the Abyss

Limited to 999 hand numbered copies, this is the debut album of funeral doomsters The Funeral Orchestra. This was the only pressing of the album, put out by Aftermath Music.

Disharmonic Orchestra - Expositionsprophylaxe

The original first press of these pungent death grind merchants from Deutchland's debut album, on Nuclear Blast USA.

Ophthalamia - A Journey in Darkness

The original first pressing of Ophthalamia's debut album of weirdness on Avantgarde Records (AV003 - their 3rd ever release). Note the distinct lack of barcode.

Peste Noire - La Sanie des siècles...

The original first press of Peste Noire's debut album on De Profundis records (CD matrix SP+GUER060414 for all the TRVE geeks out there). This was limited to a run of 2,000 copies. Re-issued with some remastering in 2008 by Transcendental Creations.

Void of Silence - Toward the Dusk

The debut album of Void of Silence on Nocturnal Art Records. Limited to 800, and out of print.

Watchtower - Energetic Disassembly

This is the much sought after debut album of Progressive thrashers Watchtower, on a 1997 remastered re-issue on Institute of Art Records. Now out of print.

Immortal Hammer - V znameni Perúnovho Kruhu

I absolutely love this album. I don't give a fuck if people think it's a Darkthrone clone or whatever (most 'kvlt' bands are these days), but this has eerie, horrible riffs galore to dwell on in the winter months. Fantastic black metal from Slovakia, in its original pressing on Eclipse Productions (limited to 1,000).

Nasty Savage - Nasty Savage

I don't know what it is about this album that makes it that much better than everything else they released, but it certainly is in my view. The eponymous debut of Nasty Ronnie's thrash monsters Nasty Savage in its original pressing on Metal Blade Records.

Obtained Enslavement - Witchcraft

The second (and best) album of Norwegian symphonic black metallers Obtained Enslavement, here in its very first pressing on Wounded Love Records.

Mörk Gryning - Tusen År Har Gått

Another debut album from a defunct bunch of Swedes - Mörk Gryning. The album title translates to 'A thousand years have passed'. Well, not quite - though it does seem like it some days when I'm struggling at work. This arrived in 1995 on No Fashion Records.