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.

Napalm - Cruel Tranquility

Dark Thrashers Napalm formed originally as Combat, but changed to Napalm when they signed to... err... Combat Records. This was the bands debut album from 1989 - they did release another album the year later, then kinda fell off the radar and split up. But come the year 2000, they reformed as Combat to release various new albums. Clear? Good. Haha. For me, they lacked a little aggression for my tastes, but there were still some great riffs and arrangements to be found. An original pressing on SPV/Steamhammer. Also, I love Ed Repka, but this isn't one of his best know cover works. Check out the opening track from the album here...

Gorerotted - Her Gash I Did Slash

Chances are if you're British and were into extreme metal in the late 90s/early 00s you'll have come across Gorerotted. Personally I loved their tongue in cheek gore-filled grinding death metal, particularly the crazed dual vocals. A lot of Carcass & Macabre to be heard here, but they also had their own thing going. I felt these guys lost something with their final album, but have re-found the some form since they split and the majority of the members went on to form The Rotted. This was the bands self released demo, which deserves more recognition than it gets if you ask me.

Scum - Mother Nature

In the early to mid-90s, Finland's Scum released two albums in quick succession and then disappeared just as soon. This was their debut album from 1994, and although it's pretty much meat and potatoes death metal, there's more than a little early Katatonia/Paradise Lost to be heard in their melodies and use of guitar lines. An original pressing on Black Mark. Here's the first track from the album... gotta love those gnarly vocals...

Incantation - Upon The Throne Of Apocalypse

If you don't like Incantation, you've really come to the wrong website. You must've been looking for a blog about Barbie dolls or disco huh? This is one of the (if not 'the') hardest to find Incantation CDs to come across these days. Musically it's as feral and raw as the band ever got, due to the music being a rough mix of their 2nd album 'Mortal Throne of Nazarene' played in reverse order. It was released as a 'fan only' release by Relapse in 1995 as a part of their great 'Underground Series' limited to a 1,000 copies.

Gontyna Kry - Welowie / Krew Naszych Ojców / Sciezka Zapomnianych Prawd

Well, here's a little more obscurity for you all. Gontyna Kry is an old Slavonic term meaning "Temple of Blood" in Polish (yes, they're from Poland), and these guys started out in the early 90s playing a raw brand of black metal with a pagan edge. Lyrically, they were National Socialists, but as the years went on they've tried to move away from the NS ideology to something resembling strictly pagan outpourings. 'Welowie' is the self released demo from the band (here on it's original CD-r pressing with pro printed inlays from '98), 'Krew Naszych Ojców' is handnumbered and limited to 500 copies on Battlefield Records and 'Sciezka Zapomnianych Prawd' is also on Battlefield Records.

Ophthalamia - To Elishia / Dominion

Ophthalamia were a super group of sorts, featuring IT & All of Abruptum, Emil Nödtveidt (Swordmaster, and brother of Dissection's Jon) and Ole Öhman (Dissection). They played an at times avantgarde style of black metal with a creepy doomy atmosphere - orthodox black metal this is not. 'To Elishia' is a compilation of demo material and rehearsal tracks, and 'Dominion' is the bands final album - most of their other releases are still in print, and I think that these two are the only ones by them which are no longer in circulation. 'To Elishia' is an original pressing by Necropolis Records, and 'Dominion' is on the similarly defunct No Fashion Records.

Neurosis - The Word As Law

This is Neurosis' 2nd album, before their giant shift into the tribal thing, back when they played something which resembled something more like hardcore punk. Even as a punk album goes, it's not exactly a shining example of its genre. But anyway, it's an original CD press on Lookout Records (not first press, as the first press had no barcode).

Carnage / Cadaver - Dark Recollections / Hallucinating Anxiety

Two of my all time faves, on ONE DISC? Hell yes. Swedes Carnage should need no introduction to anyone who loves Stockholm sounding death metal, basically featuring most of the line up of Dismember's early days with Michael Amott of Carcass/Arch Enemy on guitars too! Cadaver's debut album is also a great listen, aggressive and bile filled, with quite a quirky nature from the scatty Norwegians. What the fuck is that monstrosity on the Cadaver cover artwork?! I've never worked it out (artwork shown, the Carnage cover is the other side of the inlay). An original pressing on Necrosis Records, an ancient offshoot of Earache Records which was effectively ran by Jeff & Bill of Carcass.

Demoniac - Stormblade / The Fire and the Wind

After featuring this band's black metal debut earlier in this very blog, here are albums 2 and 3 from Demoniac, the band who's 6 stringers were to go on and form Dragonheart (who later became power metallers Dragonforce). These albums had a much more power/heavy edge to them compared to the debut, but still retained the raspy black metal vocals. There are some interesting set pieces to be heard on each of these albums, but if you've ever wondered what Dragonforce would sound like if they beefed themselves up a bit and got a screamer on the mic, here's your best bet! By the way, straining your eyes to work out the artwork of their final album 'The Fire & The Wind'? Well, it's the guitarist Sam shagging a woman doggy style, whilst enjoying a beer and flicking the bird, naturally. What else could it be?! Hahaha! Check out Metal Archives for the uncensored pic that Osmose just wouldn't allow! Original pressings on Evil Omen, and Osmose Records respectively.

Slayer - Haunting the Chapel E.P

Here's an all time classic right here, the first E.P from Slayer in an original CD pressing on Roadrunner Records. The CD came out in 1989, but the E.P was originally released on Metal Blade on Vinyl & Cassette way back in 1984, a mere year after their debut album. As E.Ps go, it's pretty fucking tasty. The near unbeatable 1-2-3 punch of Chemical Warfare, Captor of Sin & Haunting the Chapel? You'd be an idiot to disagree. A vital release.

God Macabre - The Winterlong...

God Macabre are seen by many as the ultimate underground Swedeath band who were missed by most first time around. The age of the internet made this a classic years later, and probably quite rightly so. Originally released on Mangled Beyond Recognition Records in 1993, this is the definitive re-issue on Relapse Records which contains the band's 'Consumed by Darkness' demo which they released under the band's former moniker Macabre End.

Pyogenesis - Waves of Erotasia E.P

Pyogenesis again, with the 1994 EP release which they put out just before their debut album. Not quite so doomy and deathly as their 1992 Ignis Creatio EP, this showed more of their gothy side, before they turned into complete horse shit with their later material. An original CD pressing on Nuclear Blast.

Anacrusis - Reason

Anacrusis are a band known for their proggy thrash, and later into their careers, just their 'prog' metal, with less 'thrash'. This, the bands 2nd album is still very much in the bands thrashy prog phase, and - depending on who you speak to - is one of the defining moments of prog thrash. Personally, I think it's a good album, but not quite on par with some of the genres best as many think. An original pressing on CD by Active Records, showing the original artwork which was changed on re-issues.

Sacrilege - Behind The Realms of Madness

The debut album from UK Crusty thrashers Sacrilege here, an original CD pressing on Metalcore Records. This is dirty crust punk with a smattering of thrash, spewing a really pissed off tone - grimy as fuck! These guys went onto play a straight up thrash album come album number two, only to change styles again for their third (and final) full length, where they adopted a much more doomy edge. Genre defining? Not really, but it is enjoyable as hell.

Stormlord - Supreme Art of War

Released on Last Episode Productions, Stormlord's debut album is out of print, but not particularly hard to find at a decent price if you look hard enough. These guys marry melodic black metal with the symphonic style - and there are a LOT of keyboards/synths here for those who find themselves to be complete allergic. It's a little clumsy at times, and the thin guitar tone doesn't add much needed bite where necessary - but there's still enough here to warrant investigation. Just don't expect a life affirming experience.

Messiah Force - The Last Day

Canadian's Messiah Force never hung around for long as a band, but they did leave this - their one and only album for us all to enjoy for eternity. Great, heavy/speed metal with a touch of power metal to boot. Awesome riffage, engaging songs and great vocals too, I absolutely love this record. This is an original pressing on Bold Reprieve Records.

Malteze - Count Your Blessings

The one and only album from US heavy metal crew Malteze is a decent enough effort, but it didn't exactly blow my mind. There's plenty of enthusiasm and skills on show, but not the riffs and song necessarily. This is an original pressing on CD on Active Records.

Lunatic Invasion - Totentanz

Lunatic Invasion's 2nd (and final) album here, on Invasion Records (drummer Maja Majewski ran the label). As an album it's not going to make you go crazy with enthusiasm, but it's a good solid death metal CD - nothing more, nothing less.

Atom God - History Re-Written

England's very own Atom God formed in the late 80s, playing a sweet brand of NWOBHM, a lot later into the 80s than it was actually popular to do so. This is the bands 2nd album, and it surprised me a lot with how refreshing it was. Gotta love the occasional spoken parts by the vocalist who sounds amazingly similar to Nigel Tuffnel from Spinal Tap - haha! An original pressing on CD by Communiqué Records.

Therion - Of Darkness... / Beyond Sanctorum

The first and second albums from Therion, in original pressings on Deaf/Grindcore & Active Records respectively. Both albums with the original (and great) cover art, which was unfortunately changed to lame black covers for the re-issues. This was back when the guys actually played death metal, rather than the strange amalgamation of styles they have today. Unmissable shit.

Necrofeast - Necrofeast

Released on the overly long titled Creations Of Necromantical Mysteriis records, this was the debut full length album release from these Dutch black metallers. Underground isn't the word for this lot, and from a label which only released a handful of titles before disappearing, this isn't at all easy to find these days. Musically, it's nothing which will change your life by any stretch, but still worth looking out for.

Coroner - R.I.P. / Punishment For Decadence / No More Color / Mental Vortex / Grin / Coroner

The infamous and awesome Swiss maestros Coroner. Gaining notoriety after featuring Celtic Frost's Tom G Warrior on guest vocals for their demo, these guys went on to produce some of the best thrash you could ever wish for, which as time went on, became a technical, progressive version of thrash which could only be described as typical 'Coroner'. Pictured is their entire studio album discography, along with their self titled compilation of odds and sods which contains a few newly recorded cuts. All these are all original releases on Noise Records (not all first pressings though). All out of print as present, so far as I'm aware. If you haven't already, definitely delve into these guys discography - you're bound to find something of interest.

Alarum - Fluid Motion

Australia's Alarum here with their debut album 'Fluid Motion'. This reminds me of the sort of stuff that Chuck Schuldiner was doing towards the end of his career with Death (i.e, the progressive extremity of 'The Sound of Perseverance, perhaps minus quite so much extremity). Personally this is my favourite of their releases. An original pressing by the band, on Prey Music.

Panic - Epidemic

Thrash metal here on Panic's debut album, Epidemic. This came out in 1991, when people started to care less about thrash, To be fair, the quality of the sub genre started to wane and water down to such an extent that less and less people were paying attention, with death metal being the new extreme. This is a great album though - it has a real Exodus-y vibe about it (not surprising that Gary Holt & Rick Hunolt produced the album, and even provide guest solo work). An original pressing on Metal Blade. Not particularly expensive to find if you're patient enough, but out of print none-the-less.

Hellwitch - Terraasymmetry E.P

Most will know Hellwitch for their amazing debut from 1990, 'Syzygial Miscreancy', mixing death metal with technical thrash to great effect. This EP came in 1992, also on Austrian label Lethal (a label who ripped off a lot of bands back in the day when they disappeared pretty much without trace very suddenly). It doesn't quite have the bite as the debut, but still has highlights (though, there are only 3 tracks, so even for an EP, it's way to short for it's own good).

Benediction - Dark Is The Season E.P

Released shortly after the bands 2nd album, 'Dark is the Season' is Benediction's 2nd EP, and although short, has some memorable tracks which are still played by the band live to this day. Short, sharp and to the point - as Benediction have always been. An original pressing on Nuclear Blast, though it was re-issued as bonus tracks on some re-issues of the bands debut album 'Subconscious Terror'.

Invocator - Excursion Demise / Weave The Apocalypse

The first two albums from Danish thrash/death crew Invocator. I much prefer the thrashing debut to the more groove oriented 'Weave..', but both albums are worth sticking on when you're in the mood. Love the artwork on these too. Both original pressings on Black Mark Records.