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 Stu Presents: The Golden Age Of Metal! 
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Post Re: '84 (Trouble: Psalm 9)

Stu wrote:
While I acknowledge that the style we now know as "Doom Metal" existed way, way before '84, to the point where the very first song on Black Sabbath's self-titled debut arguably created the sound all the way back in 1970 (although some would put the origins of the sound back even further than that...).

I think I can beat that. I think this was released a month prior to Abbey Road.



Mon Feb 11, 2019 5:27 am
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Post '84 (Bathory: Self-titled)

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Next up, we have Bathory's legendary debut album, which is arguably the most influential record to come out during what was (also) arguably the peak year of what's become known as "the 1st Wave Of Black Metal" (but, more on that below). Continuing the musical legacy of Venom (as much as Quorthon might have denied it otherwise) and taking it to a brand new extreme, Sweden's Bathory took the metal world by storm (of damnation?) with their low-fi, uncooked chicken-raw production values, openly, unabashedly Satanic lyrics, and raspy, evil croaking vocals courtesy of the man, the legend, Quorthon himself, all of which would are aspects that would see tremendous reverberations in Norway during the following decade (as we'll eventually see later in this project). Really, besides sounding raw in a more muddy, Venom-ish way as opposed to the shrillness that would characterize the productions of their Norwegian disciples later on, the only other aspect of Bathory that makes me hesitate from officially calling it "Black Metal" in the modern understanding of the term is its songwriting, which relies almost exclusively on intense, speedy tempos, something that I don't necessarily consider to be a defining characteristic of the style from the 2nd Wave onward. But, regardless of the genre-quibbling, Bathory was still some of the most evil-sounding music around in '84, and whether you want to call it 1st Wave Black Metal, evil-sounding Thrash, or just "extreme metal" in general, this is still one of the most influential records from one of the most influential Metal bands of all time, and whether you enjoy its particularly raw take on the genre or not, this album deserves respect for the almost incomparable impact that it's had on our beloved music, beyond a shadow of a doubt.

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Mon Feb 11, 2019 12:23 pm
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Post Re: '84 (Trouble: Psalm 9)

Wooley wrote:
I guess what we see here by my love of Dio ("Rainbow In The Dark" is seriously one of my favorite songs ever, I listen to it a few times a week and every time I'm at the gym) and The Scorpions is how much I enjoy it when hard rock/heavy metal focuses on and produces strong melodies. I find the marriage of these things to give the proceedings a razors edge and an almost magical electricity. The further it strays from great melody, the less my interest. Sabbath was obviously really good at this, but we're talking about the 80s.

Side question: Are we talking about "Hair Metal" here, like Poison and such?
Unfortunately, it feels like, in terms of the particularly melodic Traditional Metal that bands like Dio, Maiden, and Priest specialized in, it feels to me like that style more or less died out after the early-80's when the genre started getting more and more extreme, at least in terms of it feeling like no new Metal bands in that style have become anywhere near as huge as the old guard I listed. Sure, the Traditional stuff had a big influence on the creation of Power Metal later on, but I've never been a big fan of that, so I do lament the (more or less) end of major new Traditional bands being started. Although, if you like melody in Metal, what do you think of the big wave of Gothenburg-style Melodic Death Metal from the mid-90's, out of curiosity?

And as for the Hair-y stuff, I'm sure I'll mention some of those records in passing at some point, and maybe even cover one of them later on, but for the most part, I've never been very interested in Glam Metal besides the occasional exception like Pyromania, so I'm not planning on writing about it much, so no, I'm afraid.
Jinnistan wrote:
Fantastic record.
I respect you going against the grain with your opinion of that (IMO) complete and utter disaster of a piece of "music", but I'll have to agree with the rest of the unwashed masses in heaping even more hate upon it. Unfortunately, my rambling, 10-or-so-paragraph rant-review on it wasn't archived by even The Wayback Machine, so there's no way to link to it now, so you'll just have to settle for scrolling to the very bottom of this in order to read any of my (along with a couple of other guys') thoughts on it.
Jinnistan wrote:
I think I can beat that. I think this was released a month prior to Abbey Road.

While that was certainly slow enough to draw comparisons to typical Doom tempos, it was nowhere near heavy enough to be called remotely Metal (I wouldn't say it was "heavy" at all, really, not in the traditional, metallic sense of the word, at least). "I Wanna Be Your Dog" still kicks serious ass at least, though :D

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Mon Feb 11, 2019 2:36 pm
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Post Re: '84 (Trouble: Psalm 9)

Stu wrote:
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I was listening to this at work, and I gotta admit I wasn't paying too close attention to the lyrics, until I heard the guy say "God loves us all."



Anyway, good stuff. :fresh:

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Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:43 am
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Post '84 (Metallica: Ride The Lightning)

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Finally, we end the initial year of this project with what is, in my humble opinion (and hopefully your's as well), THE most important metal record of '84, which is, of course, Metallica's legendary sophomore effort Ride The Lightning, one of the band's very finest hours (even though it actually only lasts a little longer than 45 minutes, haha), and, as far as I'm concerned, the first true classic album to arise out of the then-nascent Thrash Metal movement. Now, when I say that, I admit that that statement does come with a number of caveats; first off, I'm not necessarily saying that I personally, conslusively know beyond any shadow of a doubt that Lightning is the first great thrash recording ever released, as, for l know, some band no one's ever heard of out in Nowheresville, Ohio recorded the most amazing, shredtastic metal demo tape ever all the way back in 1968, one that made Reign In Blood, Master Of Puppets, and Peace Sells all sound like complete and total crap, only for the band to disband after the only copy was destroyed in a tragic donkey fire, depriving the world of the most ahead-of-their-time heavy metal savants it has, or ever will, know. And, Ride The Lightning wasn't the first album released by a Thrash band, as Slayer & Anthrax had both already released their respective debuts by the time RTL had hit the streets, and heck, this wasn't even the world's first taste of Metallica, which came in the form of the previous year's debut release Kill 'Em All.

However, while Kill and those other records were certainly fun, fairly enjoyable debuts, stylistically, as far as I'm concerned, they were relatively unsophisticated, less aggressive examples of "Speed Metal" as opposed to being straight-up modern Thrash, and if Metallica and their contemporaries had continued in the same vein, I don't think they would've ever escaped the incredibly long shadows of Classic/New Wave British Metal, and established their own sub-genre. However, the band did just that with Ride The Lightning, taking the foundation of their idols that they had already been building upon in earnest and taking it to the next level, as they dramatically progressed their sound in a personal sense, whether it be the all-out shredfest of an opener "Fight Fire With Fire", the shockingly intimate, acoustic-driven confessional ballad "Fade To Black", or the 9 minute epic (!) instrumental "The Call Of Ktulu", an absolutely insane ode to Lovecraft's most iconic of Elder Gods. And in the process of creating all these amazing tunes, Metallica helped to permanently establish the sound of a brand new style of Metal in the process, as they take the relentlessly intensity of Hardcore Punk and fused it with the more technically-accomplished musicianship and the less chaotic, relatively "orderly" song structures of their British Metal idols, all executrd with a particularly ambitious, even progressive-leaning overall ambition to give it a unique edge, helping to create what we now know as *dramatic drumroll please* Official Modern-Day Thrash Metal, yo.

Of course, by this point, I've already tried to prove that '84 had plenty of other classic, pioneering metal records of various styles, but for my money, Lightning is definitely the most iconic one, simply by virtue of being released by a metal band that's become as uncommonly popular as Metallica, as, while it isn't necessarily more trailblazing in a stylistic sense than what Yngwie, Saint Vitus, or Quorthon recorded this year, with all due respect to those artists, their records didn't end up selling in excess of 10 million copies worldwide, did they? But at any rate, regardless of commercial popularity or inner genre impact, I think by now that I've proven that Lightning and the other records I've covered in this entry (and more I haven't, but we'll get into that) ended up making 1984 one of the biggest watershed years in the history of heavy metal, and, instead of turning out to part of some nightmare-ish dystopian era like Orwell predicted all those years ago, what we got instead was the true beginning of The Golden Age Of Metal, baby!

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Other Notable Metal Records From '84: If the records discussed above were the only Metal released that year, it would still be a watershed, but in addition to that, in terms of Traditional Metal, the year also saw the releases of Dio's excellent sophomore effort The Last In Line and Judas Priest's Defenders Of The Faith, the last true classic release by the band before going through a bit of a slump in their career in the 2nd half of the decade (before coming back hard at the dawn of the next one, but we'll cross that metallic bridge when we get to it), while on the more mainstream/"hairier" side of the spectrum, we also heard the Scorpions's Love At First Sting (which had a little song called "Rock You Like A Hurricane"; ever heard of it?), Twisted Sister's Stay Hungry, and Projects In The Jungle, the 2nd album from some band called "Pantera" before anyone knew (or gave a crap) who they were. Besides that, there was also a number of notable releases from other early Thrash bands like Metal Church's self-titled debut, Slayer's Haunting The Chapel EP, and Anthrax's debut Fistful Of Metal (which arguably helped name the style with the inclusion of the track "Metal Thrashing Mad"), but, like I said earlier, the metallic movement that was really seeing its highest peak in '84 was definitely the 1st Wave Of Black Metal, as, besides Bathory's aforementioned, unbelievably influential debut, we also saw the release of Venom's At War With Satan, which, while not as iconic a record as their first two initial classics (including Black Metal itself), it's still fairly well regarded by the Metal community in general, along with Mercyful Fate's sophomore effort Don't Break The Oath, which, while a classic record, really only resembled black metal in its openly Satanic lyrics, showing the mutability of the "Black Metal" label at the time, and the incredibly raw, ugly Apocalyptic Raids EP from Switzerland's Hellhammer, a band that would see some of its members also go on to release a classic debut record later that same year, Morbid Tales, which was recorded by some guys who called themselves Celtic Frost; you may have heard of them.

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Wed Feb 13, 2019 2:40 pm
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Post Re: Stu Presents: The Golden Age Of Metal!

Yeah, I can't argue with Ride the Lightning. I've been going back and forth between that and Master of Puppets over which one I like better (and I put Kill 'Em All closer to those than you would, as its looser, punkish stylings add to me a level of spontaneity that these more ambitious and polished works don't have in the same supply), but have leaned in its favour as of late, mostly because it's a better balance between that towering level of quality and some semblance of brevity. (I know you had ...And Justice for All as your avatar at some point on RT, so don't be mad, but I could never get into that one because of how fucking long every song is.)

In terms of your other mentions from the year, I listen to Don't Break the Oath, Morbid Tales and At War with Satan a fair bit (Venom aren't good enough musicians to pull off Satan's title track, but gosh darn it, they try, and the rest of the album is pretty fucking tight).

As for my favourite of '84 that's actually an '83 album, I'll have to go with this:

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It's not as sophisticated as any of the records you've cited and I doubt it's to your taste, but it does the trick in terms of powerful, fist-pumping anthemic metal like few others, while being a bit more mature than an album with a leather speedo on the cover would suggest (I find the songwriting fairly strong for this kind of thing and vocalist Udo Dirkschneider finds nuance in his raspy limited range). I'm also a big fan of its thrashier predecessor Restless and Wild (which at the very least has a hell of an opening), and its poppier successor Metal Heart shares enough of its better qualities to merit the occasional listen.

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Thu Feb 14, 2019 2:10 pm
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Post Re: Stu Presents: The Golden Age Of Metal!

When I think about Accept, I think about this

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Fri Feb 15, 2019 1:23 am
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Post Re: Stu Presents: The Golden Age Of Metal!

Wooley wrote:
I hear y'all, I mean specific songs that tower as high as the best of Metallica, particularly since "better songwriting" has been cited here. I want to basically put Megadeth's 5-10 "best songs" against Metallica's and see what I think.


I meant to respond to this before, but got caught with other stuff and sorta forgot about it. Anyway, I agree with what crumbs said about them not being "a lyrical band". I do like a lot of their lyrics as well as some of their anti-government stance, but to me, it's more the heavy riffs and the fast-paced drumming what brings me in. For what it's worth, here's a bit of a rundown of the band's albums for me.

1. Killing Is My Business... and Business Is Good! (1985) Maybe a bit rough around the edges, but it's a debut album after all. Still, it's a pretty good album, very aggressive, heavy, and fast paced. Favorite songs: "The Skull Beneath the Skin"

2. Peace Sells... but Who's Buying? (1986) To me, this is where they perfectioned the Megadeth sound. Music is more polished, but still very aggressive. Favorite songs: "Peace Sells", "Devil's Island"

3. So Far, So Good... So What! (1988) Not as good as the previous one, but still very solid and good to listen to. Favorite song: "Liar"

4. Rust in Peace (1990) This is what most people will agree is the band's peak. It's my favorite album and probably has my favorite songs in it. I love the guitars here, everything rocks in this album. If you're not hooked after listening to the opening of "Hangar 18", I'm not sure what else to say. Favorite songs: "Hangar 18", "Tornado of Souls"

5. Countdown to Extinction (1992) My second favorite album. They follow the previous album's formula with great results. I think this one has some of their best lyrics. Favorite songs: "Symphony of Destruction", "Skin o' My Teeth"

6. Youthanasia (1994) Good album, although I'm not as much of a fan of it as other people. However, I will say that this is probably their best "commercial" effort. A lot of the songs are a tad mellower or more mainstream, not as heavy, and there is more attention to vocal melodies. Favorite songs: "Family Tree", "Victory"

7. & 8. Cryptic Writings (1997) & Risk (1999) I won't say much about this two cause I really have barely listened to them at all. I think I listened to them once or twice. For most rock/metal bands, the 90's were a black hole of confusion and attempts to reinvent themselves, and Megadeth wasn't exempt. What I remember is mostly dull, uninspired songs and confused sound, but who knows. Maybe I'll give them a second chance one of these days.

9. The World Needs a Hero (2001) This was a step in the right direction, but still not enough. Probably the most uneven of the albums I've heard with some good/great songs and some really, really bad ones. Favorite songs: "Warhorse", "Dread and Fugitive Mind"

10. The System Has Failed (2004) I've already sung my praises for this album. It's probably my 3rd favorite of the band. I think the first half of the album is one of the best stretches they've had in any album with heavy, aggressive songs. The second half is a bit weaker, but still solid. Favorite songs: "Kick the Chair", "Tears in a Vial"

11. United Abominations (2007) Yet another solid/great album full of heavy songs and great riffs. There's also a new version of their hit song "A Tout le Monde", and I know it might be heresy, but I kinda prefer this version to the original. They upped the tempo a bit, and the vocals of the Lacuna Coil singer adds some layers to it. Favorite songs: "Washington is Next", "Never Walk Alone... a Call to Arms"

12. Endgame (2009) I won't say much cause I really haven't listened to this one as much as I should to judge it. Still, it's pretty good. Favorite song: "1,320"

13. 14. & 15. Thirteen (2011), Super Collider (2013), & Dystopia (2016) Nothing to add cause I kinda disconnected from the band at some point, for no specific reason. I haven't listened to Thirteen or Super Collider, and I think I only listened to Dystopia once, so there's that. It's not a slight on them, but in the last years, I've kinda fell off from listening to albums with the same religiosity I used to.

Let us know what you think if you check them out.

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Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:30 am
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I'm going to be out-of-town until sometime Monday, so I may not be able to post anything for '85/respond to any old replies until then, but in the meantime, here's a sample of what my '84 write-ups would've looked like if I had batched them all together in one big post like I originally planned; would you guys want to potentially wait a little longer between each entry and receive the write-ups for future years in this project all at once like they are below, or would you rather have me continue to just post each album write-up daily, one-at-a-time like I just did?:

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We kick the first year of this project off with Iron Maiden's Powerslave, a Metal record that needs no introduction from a Metal BAND that needs no introduction, as it serves as the monumental capper to a back-to-back series of iconic records we got from the poster boys of NWoBHM throughout the first half of the 80's, from the scrappier, punkier stylings of the Di'Anno records, to the more melodic, EPIC tone of the Dickinson era, which defined the band's style and made them worldwide icons, so it was a no-brainer to go with slave as being the foremost representation of traditional Metal that was released in '84. However, I wouldn't exactly describe this as being a revolutionary record for Maiden, but rather, a refining, revisiting the bigger, more ambitious leanings of 82's Number Of The Beast after the band had the chance to get a bit more comfortable with Dickinson/newcomer drummer Nicko McBrain through the more humble, but still equally enjoyable stylings of '83's Piece Of Mind. At any rate, from the blazing opener "Aces High" to the soaring instrumental "Losfer Words", or the absolutely epic, 13-minute record closer "Rime Of The Ancient Mariner", this is Maiden at their best, as Murray & Smith's amazing riffs and solos blaze away as intense as ever, Steve Harris's incredibly energetic, galloping bass holds down the low end in his signature virtuoso manner, and of course, the operatic vocals of the Air Raid Siren, Mr. Bruce Dickinson himself, fly higher and farther than ever before, resulting in what is still the band's finest hour, as far as I'm concerned; up the Irons, punks!

Recommended Cut:



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Ever wondered what it might sound like if Johann Sebastian Bach had been born about 3 centuries later, had grown up listening to Deep Purple & Rainbow, and ended up with the kind of raw guitar skill that would give peers like Satriani, Randy Rhoades, and even Eddie Van Halen a run for their respective monies? ...what, you have wondered that? Weirdo. Anyway, the answer to your oddly specific hypothetical lies within Yngwie Malmsteen's Grammy-nominated debut Rising Force, in which the Swedish guitar wunderkind takes the immortal guitar legacy of Ritchie Blackmore and absolutely runs with it, resulting the first truly essential, all-around work of Neo-Classical Metal, which you can hear in tracks like "Evil Eye" which are based on actual, old-school compositions of Classical music, only with a hefty infusion of the METAL to update them for the modern age. Of course, this is an almost completely instrumental recording where the riffs take a backseat to the almightly lead guitar, which, instead of being used as an occasional accent, is really the driving force (sorry) behind the music, and, admittedly, I know essentially nothing about how to play guitar, so most of the technical details of Malmsteen's skills go way, way over my head, but even I can still tell that he takes incredibly flashy, shred-tastic fret pyrotechnics that are as on fire on record as the conspicuously fingernail-painted hand on the album cover, and focuses them with catchy, well-composed melodies, solos, and actual, legitimate songwriting, as opposed to being just empty, pointless guitar wankery, proving there's a good reason why Yngwie is still a god to guitarists everywhere to this day, and it all started with this record right here, baby.

Recommended Cut:



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While I acknowledge that the style we now know as "Doom Metal" existed way, way before '84, to the point where the very first song on Black Sabbath's self-titled debut arguably created the sound all the way back in 1970, although some would put the origins of the sound back even further than that (just sayin', there's a good reason why Coroner, Type O Negative, and Mötley Crüe all recorded covers of that song). But, as far as I'm concerned, while Sabbath and a couple of other groups occasionally flirted with Doom-y sensibilities over the years, it wasn't until the Aurora, Illinois-based Trouble recorded their debut record Psalm 9 that the world heard the first example of what was an unambiguously, undeniably Doom Metal album in general. And, while there's still plenty of more up-tempo riffs here and there on this record (though even those parts are still awesome), and although they're far from the most iconic band in the genre (a certain Swedish group that helped cement the name of the style were yet to debut, as we'll soon see), Trouble was still the first band to record an album that was predominantly Doom, building upon the legacy of the almighty Sabbath with their downbeat, crawling tempos, ultra-thick, down-tuned, dread-laden riffs, and fantastic lyrical tales of spiritual darkness and warfare, all of which are elements that would come to be synonymous with the genre in coming years, and proving that, while Trouble may not have been the famous example of their particular style, they were certainly one of the first, in addition to just being one of the best as well; Iommi would be proud!

Recommended Cut:



Image

Next up, we have Bathory's legendary debut album, which is arguably the most influential record to come out during what was (also) arguably the peak year of what's become known as "the 1st Wave Of Black Metal" (but, more on that below). Continuing the musical legacy of Venom (as much as Quorthon might have denied it otherwise) and taking it to a brand new extreme, Sweden's Bathory took the metal world by storm (of damnation?) with their low-fi, uncooked chicken-raw production values, openly, unabashedly Satanic lyrics, and raspy, evil croaking vocals courtesy of the man, the legend, Quorthon himself, all of which would are aspects that would see tremendous reverberations in Norway during the following decade (as we'll eventually see later in this project). Really, besides sounding raw in a more muddy, Venom-ish way as opposed to the shrillness that would characterize the productions of their Norwegian disciples later on, the only other aspect of Bathory that makes me hesitate from officially calling it "Black Metal" in the modern understanding of the term is its songwriting, which relies almost exclusively on intense, speedy tempos, something that I don't necessarily consider to be a defining characteristic of the style from the 2nd Wave onward. But, regardless of the genre-quibbling, Bathory was still some of the most evil-sounding music around in '84, and whether you want to call it 1st Wave Black Metal, evil-sounding Thrash, or just "extreme metal" in general, this is still one of the most influential records from one of the most influential Metal bands of all time, and whether you enjoy its particularly raw take on the genre or not, this album deserves respect for the almost incomparable impact that it's had on our beloved music, beyond a shadow of a doubt.

Recommended Cut:



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Finally, we end the initial year of this project with what is, in my humble opinion (and hopefully your's as well), THE most important metal record of '84, which is, of course, Metallica's legendary sophomore effort Ride The Lightning, one of the band's very finest hours (even though it actually only lasts a little longer than 45 minutes, haha), and, as far as I'm concerned, the first true classic album to arise out of the then-nascent Thrash Metal movement. Now, when I say that, I admit that that statement does come with a number of caveats; first off, I'm not necessarily saying that I personally, conslusively know beyond any shadow of a doubt that Lightning is the first great thrash recording ever released, as, for l know, some band no one's ever heard of out in Nowheresville, Ohio recorded the most amazing, shredtastic metal demo tape ever all the way back in 1968, one that made Reign In Blood, Master Of Puppets, and Peace Sells all sound like complete and total crap, only for the band to disband after the only copy was destroyed in a tragic donkey fire, depriving the world of the most ahead-of-their-time heavy metal savants it has, or ever will, know. And, Ride The Lightning wasn't the first album released by a Thrash band, as Slayer & Anthrax had both already released their respective debuts by the time RTL had hit the streets, and heck, this wasn't even the world's first taste of Metallica, which came in the form of the previous year's debut release Kill 'Em All.

However, while Kill and those other records were certainly fun, fairly enjoyable debuts, stylistically, as far as I'm concerned, they were relatively unsophisticated, less aggressive examples of "Speed Metal" as opposed to being straight-up modern Thrash, and if Metallica and their contemporaries had continued in the same vein, I don't think they would've ever escaped the incredibly long shadows of Classic/New Wave British Metal, and established their own sub-genre. However, the band did just that with Ride The Lightning, taking the foundation of their idols that they had already been building upon in earnest and taking it to the next level, as they dramatically progressed their sound in a personal sense, whether it be the all-out shredfest of an opener "Fight Fire With Fire", the shockingly intimate, acoustic-driven confessional ballad "Fade To Black", or the 9 minute epic (!) instrumental "The Call Of Ktulu", an absolutely insane ode to Lovecraft's most iconic of Elder Gods. And in the process of creating all these amazing tunes, Metallica helped to permanently establish the sound of a brand new style of Metal in the process, as they take the relentlessly intensity of Hardcore Punk and fused it with the more technically-accomplished musicianship and the less chaotic, relatively "orderly" song structures of their British Metal idols, all executrd with a particularly ambitious, even progressive-leaning overall ambition to give it a unique edge, helping to create what we now know as *dramatic drumroll please* Official Modern-Day Thrash Metal, yo.

Of course, by this point, I've already tried to prove that '84 had plenty of other classic, pioneering metal records of various styles, but for my money, Lightning is definitely the most iconic one, simply by virtue of being released by a metal band that's become as uncommonly popular as Metallica, as, while it isn't necessarily more trailblazing in a stylistic sense than what Yngwie, Trouble, or Quorthon recorded this year, with all due respect to those artists, their records didn't end up selling in excess of 10 million copies worldwide, did they? But at any rate, regardless of commercial popularity or inner genre impact, I think by now that I've proven that Lightning and the other records I've covered in this entry (and more I haven't, but we'll get into that) ended up making 1984 one of the biggest watershed years in the history of heavy metal, and, instead of turning out to part of some nightmare-ish dystopian era like Orwell predicted all those years ago, what we got instead was the true beginning of The Golden Age Of Metal, baby!

Recommended Cut:



Other Notable Metal Records From '84:

If the records discussed above were the only Metal released that year, it would still be a watershed, but in addition to that, in terms of Traditional Metal, the year also saw the releases of Dio's excellent sophomore effort The Last In Line and Judas Priest's Defenders Of The Faith, the last true classic release by the band before going through a bit of a slump in their career in the 2nd half of the decade (before coming back hard at the dawn of the next one, but we'll cross that metallic bridge when we get to it), while on the more mainstream/"hairier" side of the spectrum, we also heard the Scorpions's Love At First Sting (which had a little song called "Rock You Like A Hurricane"; ever heard of it?), Twisted Sister's Stay Hungry, and Projects In The Jungle, the 2nd album from some band called "Pantera" before anyone knew (or gave a crap) who they were. Besides that, there was also a number of notable releases from other early Thrash bands like Metal Church's self-titled debut, Slayer's Haunting The Chapel EP, and Anthrax's debut Fistful Of Metal (which arguably helped name the style with the inclusion of the track "Metal Thrashing Mad"), but, like I said earlier, the metallic movement that was really seeing its highest peak in '84 was definitely the 1st Wave Of Black Metal, as, besides Bathory's aforementioned, unbelievably influential debut, we also saw the release of Venom's At War With Satan, which, while not as iconic a record as their first two initial classics (including Black Metal itself), it's still fairly well regarded by the Metal community in general, along with Mercyful Fate's sophomore effort Don't Break The Oath, which, while a classic record, really only resembled black metal in its openly Satanic lyrics, showing the mutability of the "Black Metal" label at the time, and the incredibly raw, ugly Apocalyptic Raids EP from Switzerland's Hellhammer, a group that would see some of its members go on to release a classic debut album later that same year, Morbid Tales, under the band name Celtic Frost; you may have heard of them.

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