Friday, January 22, 2010

Precious Metal - Decibel Presents The Stories Behind 25 Extreme Metal Masterpieces
Edited by Albert Mudrian
Da Capo

From the harrowing to hallowedly unholy there's plenty of info to eviscerate from this tome. Even for the avowedly cursory once-over set it should offer several enticing if not out-right irrrresistable inducements to explore darker, danker corridors of skull-scrambling studio slayings as Diamond Head, Celtic Frost, Kyuss, Carcass, Cannibal Corpse, Slayer, Monster Magnet, Morbid Angel, Paradise Lost, Napalm Death et al get candid and curtly reminiscent about their masterpiece hanging in metals mortuary slabs. And where in Hell's hockey team would a book on metals mightiest battlements staunchly defending it's furthest frontiers with pot-paunch and a Peavey be without touching on some incidents of Norwegian stabbing frenzy and heroic church-torching (see Emperor). Surely many an ardent acolyte will possess many of these pieces or have the general gen or the bones thereof, though the collector-crew metal frequently accrues will covet the thoroughness of its compilation, as the rules were that an album could only be covered if all members could be interviewed. Really though, it's hard to - beyond the grave extremities that Emperor worked under and around and Cannibal Corpse's necrotic art / cryptophagic erotica on Tomb Of The Mutilated - push pieces that far beyond the usual run of the mill recording banalities of hectic schedules, the difficulties vs results achieved in defiance of technlological pre-pro tools limits and errant band members and myriad personal, musical and label difficulties, however entertaining certain backbiting and bickering is (Monster Magnet). Anyone wanting a tabloid-style account of wasted beyond deadlines should locate a slightly different calibre of library but as far giving the odd nudge (Eyehategod, Celtic Frost - anyone meant to be that terrible must be worth another listen...p'raps) in some bands general direction with what bands sorta have to do to be, like, a band and stuff it's a handy little browse. Certainly though, without getting even slightly techy, hats off to any engineer having to cut and splice such dense, intense and/or insanely FAST such music on tape in pre-digital days. Musta been enough for anyone to crumble and sit in a blazing sandpit. With or without safety helmets.
Stu Gibson

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