“Amazon Metal Sampler 2010” by Various Artists

Artist: Various Artists
Title: “Amazon Metal Sampler 2010”
Label: The End Records
Release Date: 2/28/2010
Genre: Hard Rock/Metal/Experimental
Rating: 3.5/5

As the cold weather makes way for the warmer months of the year, the thoughts of concerts and good times with friends are clearly on the minds of the Metal and Hard Rock masses. With this in mind those awesome folks over at The End Records have partnered up with Amazon.com to give you a healthy sampling of what they are dishing out for your audio sensors and it’s surely something of supreme interest because its all free for the taking. I’ve been a fan of much of what has been going on over at The End for a couple of years now and have been luckier still to see a number of their most interesting acts do their thing onstage. That being said, I am a decent judge of what is being presented on this sampler and if you disagree with me, well, remember that the whole blasted thing is free so you are in a win – win situation anyway that you look at it. For me the highlights begin with The 69 Eyes who are a new signing to the label and we get the tune from their first video for the “Back In Blood” CD. It’s a cute tune, but not my own favorite from the release – I admit my longtime fanship of the band makes me a tough critic on that one. Another highlight comes via Emilie Autumn who is an artist whose show must be seen to be believed as she crosses the line from musician to Gothic performance artist with ease. Emilie is simply amazing but you really need to be open minded to enjoy her show the best. Since I am a pretty solid fan of the crushing Metal side, I loved hearing Nile’s Karl Sanders do his solo stuff and those guys in November’s Doom really show you how to succeed in this genre without question. The Punk fans will enjoy Suicide City’s contribution but sadly by the time of this release the band had decided to break up and they shall be missed by their fans without question. If there are considerable levels of bleak darkness in your Metal veins then there is a chance that the offerings by Vreid & Borknagar might do the trick and sate those inhuman hungers for that which is Metal with grit. Other favorites of mine were from both Sigh and Hull and when you listen to this release in full you will quickly realize how one band does not sound much like the others that are on the release and that is fantastic since it shows you just how much is really out there.

Some omissions are visible to a fan of the labels output as much as I am and I am speaking of the likes of Lordi, Sleepytime Gorilla Museum and Unexpect who are bands that I really enjoy and have seen in concert a number of times. My guess is that since the presented tunes are from recent releases that it was not as much a dismissal of their talented works, but more about making sure that the fans are aware of the new material that is available under their banner. You cannot go wrong with twenty songs at the whopping cost of free if you ask me, and these are tunes that will either convince you of the labels being ahead of their time and peers or one that sends you away confused. Either way, the tunes will affect you and will be stuff that is remembered for a long time. You can help out all the more by sending like minded friends these words so they can also easily snatch up these goodies. Let’s hope more labels do stuff like this, and lets all work together at keeping the Metal and Rock scene vibrant by supporting the different as opposed to the usual boring crap. One can also hope that these free tracks send you off to purchasing the full albums by the artists you enjoyed the most. That is a very good thing if that happens.

Track Listing:
1. The 69 Eyes – “Dead Girls Are Easy”
2. Dir En Grey – “Dozing Green” (Live)
3. Creature With The Atom Brain – “Transylvania”
4. Emilie Autumn – “Liar”
5. Cable – “Running Out Of Roads To Ride”
6. Goes Cube – “Grinding The Knife Blade”
7. Early Man – “Someone Else’s Nightmare”
8. Shining – “Fisheye”
9. Karl Sanders – “Rapture Of The Empty Spaces”
10. Novembers Doom – “A Eulogy For The Living Lost”
11. Suicide City – “The Best Way”
12. Die Apokalyptischen Reiter – “Der Weg” (Live)
13. Sigh – “L’art De Mourir”
14. Borknagar – “Havoc”
15. Laethora – “A.S.K.E.”
16. Hull – “Architect”
17. These Are They – “The Indweller”
18. Vreid – “Milorg”
19. Sarke – “Old”
20. Fenriz Red Planet/Nattefrost – “Sin Goddammit”

Official Website: http://www.theendrecords.com

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