• Free Metal CD's

    Set 12 2006, 4h10

    A repository for free rock/metal CD's I dug up via the internet, cuz I'm a cheap music whore who can only buy like 3 CD's a month. There's a lot out there, and most of it's pretty decent. Obviously, if you know of more free cd's post a link and I'll add it to the top. More will be added as I find them (which happens every now and then, but not on a weekly basis or anything).

    The first 'link' is the band's page, the second is the closest link to the download I could get.

    Anacrusis - A whole bunch of albums
    Progressive/Melodic Thrash band, four full CD's on the website here along with various demos and live stuff.

    Avathar - Avathar
    Scandinavian black/death metal in the vein of Summoning. Someone once told me they had a full demo or something on here but since I can't read Finnish...

    Circle of Tyrants - The Art Of Intensity
    Heavy/Power Metal

    Dark Empire - Northern Sky Websingle
    Thrashy Power Metal, much like Persuader, Savage Circus, older Blind Guardian. Matt Moliti is a guitar god, just go and get it, then buy the full album.

    Evilion - Vanity
    Female-fronted Symphonic/Melodic metal nothing like the billions of Nightwish/Within Temptation clones you hear nowadays. It kind of reminds me of Therion because of the occasional operatics. Very well done.

    Finntroll - RivFader Demo
    Probably the biggest name on here, Finnish folk metal grandmasters' (grandfathers'?) demo CD. This is the link you get directly from the Fintroll Website.

    Heathen - Breaking the Silence AND Victims of Deception
    Probably the most famous free metal CD's, bay area Thrash group Heathen released their first two albums free a few years ago. After being plagued by so many member changes and shutdowns it's good to see them in the green for a change, this is a damn good band--check out Breaking the Silence if you don't believe me.

    Jester's Funeral - Fragments of an Exploded Heart
    German Thrash metal, full album released to the public.

    Metallica - MetallicA Live
    For a large collection of older concerts, complete in .mp3 format; the quality might suck at points but at least the songs are cool. There's over 1 gig of music on there at the moment.

    Mistral - Compilation 2001 - 2004
    One man's "Melodic Hybrid Metal" project, incorperating aspects of everything from Gothic to Industrial to Gothenburg. He's in the middle of producing a new full album and offered this up as a sampler of sorts.

    Skald - Sagor Från Skogstjärnen Demo
    Another Folk Metal band, with another demo. However I really like this one myself. It's kind of like a less edgy Korpiklaani.

    Warbreed - So Cry Havoc EP
    Melodic Death Metal/Gothenburg, hailing from Argentina, who use a lot of World War II themes in thier lyrics. Even if you don't like death vocals check out the last track (instrumental), it's pretty damn good.
  • 5000th Track and various rantings

    Ago 20 2006, 19h01

    Volvot ulvoo kuun savuun. Damn good band that doesn't get much coverage outside of Europe, and not much over there either. One of the most original groups I've heard in forever, Turmion Kätilöt combines techno/electronica with industrial as well as shredding guitars. It kicketh much ass, though the band's CD's and single are obnoxiously hard to track down in the US. The band's got some samples on their Myspace Page as a matter of fact.

    As for the rant, I bought the Blind Guardian Otherland single but the damn thing keeps recording as oTeHrLaHnD or something f***ed up like that because saw scrobbles of the crappily named bootlegs first. GAH. Just about makes me want to change my stance on illegal downloads--at least name it right you farking sneaky bastages. Now it looks like Blind Guardian fans are a group of dyslexic Bulgarians who failed Spelling class with all the horrible song titles popping up.

    Speaking of downloads, one of my friends complained about having (I shit you not) this Raffi song stuck in his head for weeks after hearing it *once*. So, of course, everyone demanded that he get it for us (could be useful as a torture device, governmental mind-control weapon, etc.). Appearently it was only performed live, once, and recorded by someones parents with a really low-quality recording device. Sadly, addicted friend was right, because I spent the entire weekend flushing my ears with Nevermore and Dark Empire and the occasional Threshold in my attempts to get rid of it. So, the moral of this story is, if anyone ever complains of having a childrens' song stuck in their head, laugh at them and run away very very fast, especially if it's referred to as "The Cat Song by Raffi". (Damn that man and his overly catchy children's songs... I must remember to get earplugs before I produce mortal progeny.) As a completely unrelated side note, the BadgerBadgerBadger flash video also has a Bananaphone version. (Please kill me.)

    And a last major rant related to downloads. Why is it most independant/small-label bands only release a handful of 800kbs mp3's as their "free samples"? I mean, hell, like anyone's going to buy a totally random CD from an unknown band after hearing a whole minute of it. The 30-second sample per song you get with iTunes, Urge, etc. is at least passable in comparison to a 15-second blip or a two-minute "greatest hits medley". Seriously, they should take a note from Symphony X and Tiles, both released enough free tracks to make a whole CD. And you know what, I bought CD's from both bands 'cuz of how much I liked the free songs.

    Bah. <runs away to sulk in cynicism>
  • Bandwatch - Wuthering Heights

    Ago 19 2006, 20h41

    After stumbling accross the Wuthering Heights album Far From the Madding Crowd a few weeks ago, I have to say this is one of the awesomest bands I've heard in a long time. The combination of power metal and Celtic folk/history isn't exactly the most original in metal history, but the greatness is in the delivery, not the idea (though the lyrics and themes arn't exactly cookie-cutter cliches, either). The Celtic melodies flow perfectly with the metal, especially on tracks like Highland Winds and The Road Goes Ever On. Being a DANISH band, it makes sense that the vocalist doesn't sound obnoxiously Celtic, but aside from being a little hard to get into at first listen (kinda reminds me of Skyclad in this regard), he does a pretty dang good job. All in all I really don't know what to say about this band besides "check them out!!", I'm in awe of thier great performance. You can find a few samples from their older stuff at their website. For those of us who love both bagpipes and the Blind Guardian/Persuader style of metal, this band is a godsend!

    Similar bands would include Persuader, Blind Guardian, Cruachan, Tuatha de Dannan. You might also catch a little bit of Skyclad, Elvenking, Dark Empire, Thy Majestie and Ensiferum, as well as any power/progressive folk metal band.
  • Free Legal Metallica!!

    Ago 10 2006, 5h05

    Note that it's live, so if that's off-putting to you... then go away.

    I'm really surprised how many people don't know that Metallica's been offering free .mp3 downloads of their concerts for quite a while from their MetallicA -Live- site ( Currently there's around 10 full concert recordings availible free from the Vault, and supposedly they update every month or so (but I haven't seen much activity on there). You can also download the newer concerts (post-2004) for around $9 (USD) per show, though those have the sucky new songs on them as well. OTOH, the free downloads' quality varies from show to show while the pay downloads are pretty good (and the Europe '06 ones have the "New Song" on them), and many people (me included) arn't exactly thrilled to death by live music, but hey... it's free. It's free Metallica. Besides, it has some nostalgic if you were in Gothenburg in '87 or SanFran in '85.

    And in case you've been hiding under a rock for the past month, you can now snag Metallica off of iTunes now (previously you could get them off Urge, but only full albums and not by individual song). So now there are around eight billion forum posts saying "the kings of anti-download have caved in", even though they were on Urge when it launched this spring, and have been offering free live .mp3's for quite a while now...
  • Bandwatch - Heathen

    Jul 30 2006, 17h22

    With a name like Heathen, you'd probably expect a death/doom/black/pagan band of some kind. Actually, Heathen is a traditional old-school outfit, much like Metallica or Pantera. The Bay-area band had an interesting history, changing members at an extreme rate until the band more or less disbanded, only to reunite in 2001 with a new CD.

    The best part of all this is that Heathen decided to release their old albums for free. You can download the first two albums, Breaking the Silence and Victims of Deception from the band's website. I highly recommend Breaking the Silence, though I'm not as thrilled with Victims. YMMV.

    Top tracks include Goblin's Blade, Save the Skull, the cover of Sweet's Set Me Free, and the cover of Rainbow's Kill the King.
  • 4000th track

    Jul 18 2006, 4h19

    Next In Line. I haven't been keeping track of stuff like I planned (stupid real life), especially track records. The only other one I remember is track 1900, Day Nineteen: Disclosure which is slightly easier to remember because of its apt timing (heh). Though, I have yet to pass 500 plays in any one band, and my top 5 don't even add up to 1000 (nearly but not quite). <sigh> Too many different bands.

    Also, for any other metalheads currently selling their soul to eMusic, I finally "completed" my list of good metal on emusic (or at least the start of it). There's quite a few good titles on there, including bands like Opeth, Evergrey, Rhapsody, Iced Earth, Green Carnation, and Mago de Oz, just to name a few. You can find it at