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.

Slugathor - Unleashing The Slugathron / Circle of Death

Slugathor were one of the gnarliest death metal bands to ever drool out of cold, grey Finland. Pictured are the original pressings of their debut and sophomore albums, both of which are pretty hard to come across these days, and going for silly money on the usual marketplace sites. If you like your death metal raw, sick and angry, you can't go far wrong with these two little beauties. 'Circle of Death' was later reissued with a red logo, but this is the original with the pus yellow logo.

Slaughter - Strappado

This is the Metal Mind re-issue of some prime classic death/thrash from Canadians Slaughter. Limitation of 2,000 copies, this is as hard to track down as some of the earlier pressings these days, but comes with the bonus of live tracks in addition to the original album itself. A must for fans of the old school, this is a beastly force to be reckoned with.

Ulver - Vargnatt

'Vargnatt' is the fine demo of Ulver, the one time black metal band who went on to metamorphose into any number of genres you'd care to mention. This came before any of their full length outputs, and is a beauty in this re-issued CD by Kyrck Productions, in a leather (or, faux leather?) bound book. A real treat.

Warpath - Damnation

A nice piece of obscurity here, featuring British thrashers Warpath. These guys self released this debut album in 2008, then seemingly disappeared off the face of the earth. A shame, as this is a top old school thrash album. Lots of euro thrash influences to be heard here, not to mention a good helping of US/Bay Area, they manage to cream off the best of their influences and mould it into their own impressive shape. A real head turner, which is worth tracking down.

Tomb Mold - Primordial Malignity

A nice slab of gnarled old school death metal from Blood Music here, the debut album from Tomb Mold 'Primordial Malignity'. As a fairly new band, they certainly hit the ground running and smash all the right notes on their journey into slime filled death. You're certainly going to need to crack a window when playing this one, unless you happen to love the stench of decaying crypts. Killer stuff.

Abramelin - Deadspeak

The 2nd album from Australia's brilliant Abramelin here, featuring some of their best produced, face punching death metal. Thick, angry and chunky, this bristles with unbridled rage and blasts through you like an out of control freight train. This is the original pressing on Shock/Thrust Records, but their discography was re-issued by Century Media if you're looking for a more affordable physical option.

Alcest - Kodama

Alcest have certainly changed style through the ages of their existence, blowing through their earlier more atmospheric black metal oriented material before settling for a post-metal/shoegaze sound which they've clung to ever since. Everything about this is about as far from metal as you can get in reality, but being a fan of the likes of My Bloody Valentine, I still embrace their dreamy, solipsistic sound.

Sceptic - Blind Existence / Pathetic Being / Unbeliever's Script / Internal Complexity

Technical death metal from the magnificent Sceptic from Poland. This is the band of guitarist Jacek Hiro, a former live guitarist for Decapitated and formally of Dies Irae. Over a lot of their early material they sounded like the latter 'tech' period of Death's career. These guys are incredibly technical but tuneful with it, and enough genuine riffery to carry it through without just being a showcase of guitar gymnastics. Well worth a look - my personal favourite is their debut, 'Blind Existence'.

Torture Killer - For Maggots To Devour / Swarm! / Sewers / Phobia

Starting out as a Six Feet Under covers band (with their name taken from a song from SFU's 'Maximum Carnage'), these Finns started out sounding very similar too. However later into their career they found their own path (even with Chris Barnes himself guesting on multiple tracks of their album 'Swarm!'). Out of these four, I actually prefer their most recent album 'Phobia' - it's pretty deadly. Fans of SFU need to check these guys out, and for those who aren't - check out 'Phobia'  & 'Sewers'.

Visceral Evisceration - Incessant Desire For Palatable Flesh

More doomy death metal here from Austrians Visceral Evisceration. These guys didn't hang around for long, with this being their sole full length album from 1994. The music on offer is actually fairly melodious (considering the artwork would perhaps point to a gore grind styled approach), these guys had something more in common with earlier Paradise Lost than early Carcass. One of the earlier releases on a then budding Napalm Records (this being the very first pressing), these guys changed their name to As I Lay Dying (no, that THAT As I Lay Dying), and released a demo before disbanding completely. A small, but perfectly formed piece of the massive jigsaw that is European metal.

Novembers Doom - Bled White

I always seem to be about an album behind with Novembers Doom, picking up each of their 'most recent' albums just as the next one is about to drop. This is their 2014 album 'Bled White' (album number 9, in fact) which features more of their downbeat, growly death/doom, packed with sorrow, aching melodies and when the feeling requires, a bit of head down crushery. Can't really fault these guys, as they've consistently released quality music album after album. The End Records.