Just one look at the cover of the demo tape tells us everything we need to know. Scanning the artwork, you see an all black and blood-red aesthetic featuring a medieval warrior sitting upon a throne. Your eyes are drawn to the words “WHETSTONE” and “ANCIENT METAL”. Now I see something like this and it immediately gives me a certain expectation of the band’s sound and luckily, Ancient Metal sounds exactly like it looks.
What Witchfinder General does is that they fuse the bludgeoning, lumbering violence of Sabbath with the deceptively-lithe athleticism & agility of what the other NWOBHM bands were doing at the time
Track premiere from Old Mother Hell’s upcoming album Lord of Demise! This German trio play a fantastic blend of heavy and doom metal.
Possessed Steel are a four-piece traditional heavy metal band hailing from Toronto, Canada. They’ve been toiling away in the underground since 2010 and two EPs and one band break-up later, they are finally poised to release their highly anticipated debut album Aedris on Temple of Mystery Records!
Being a doom metal fanatic my taste for the heavy and doomy but definitely metallic has significant elasticity. I enjoy doom metal that more discerning ears might not have the time nor inclination for. I’ll leave the lower end of my listening spectrum out of my writing but over the years the shear amount of doom I’ve leant an ear to is significant. Amidst the boulders, forests, and rubble of that mountain of doom there are some quality bands that seem to have gotten lost and left off the radar of most doom fans. These are not the very top shelf, the legends of the genre, but they are really good and considerably enjoyable. It is this article’s intent to get a few more doom fans to discover them.
Candlemass’s later two 80’s records are an example of how expectation can distort and alter the perception of certain works. They are both fine albums, but because this was also the band who happened to write two of the best albums of all time right before (forget genre for a second), they both tend to be dismissed because they happened to be ever-so-slightly flawed by comparison. Which is a perverse reinforce of the band’s greatness at their peak, in a sense – a friend of mine recently put it that even the two “weaker” Candlemass albums would still make them one of the best doom metal bands of all time.
Toca Madera are another act joining the fray, playing in the vein of early 80s Spanish Metal like Barón Rojo, Ángeles del Infierno and Panzer (the name is a reference to their most famous album) among others. With 5 songs clocking in roughly at 25 minutes, the self-titled EP captures the exact feel of those first Spanish records: a gritty, unpolished tribute that sounds somewhere between late 70s hard rock, early NWOBHM and edging on speed metal at times.
Ultimately, the greatest NWOBHM album of the movement always deserves to be noted, and as far as I’m concerned, that album is Court in the Act.