“Armoury Records/Eagle Records 2009 Sampler” by Various Artists

Artist: Various Artists
Title: “Armoury Records/Eagle Records 2009 Sampler”
Label: Eagle Records
Release Date: 8/11/2009
Genre: Heavy Metal/Hard Rock
Rating: 4/5

As far as free samplers go this is a relatively strong one as it presents music that was released on not only Eagle & Armoury Records, but also material that originally hailed from the now shut down Spitfire Records. As a Metal fan I generally loved what Spitfire was dishing out for they had a number of bands that I was passionate as a supporter of the genre and since their closure both Eagle and Armoury have kept this charge pressing forward. The bands that are presented are very well known to fans and you really cannot go wrong with any of the tracks when it comes down to it. Here’s some thoughts on what you get for those fans that are looking to update their music library and perhaps have these songs assist them in future purchases. We get two tracks from Black Label Society who I like but have never regarded as one of my favorite bands above any others. I was not sure why they gave us two songs but perhaps with Zakk’s continued popularity this was the case. I would have preferred a heavy tune from the Black Crowes as opposed to a second one from the NJ Berzerker. There are four live tunes by way of Dio, Poison, Rainbow and Napalm Death and each of these showcases just how good those acts are in the live sense. The Poison one might intrigue people quite a bit since it features Richie Kotzen on the lead guitar as opposed to C.C. DeVille. Dio’s number of course is a legendary staple from his debut album and performed to crushing perfection and he is also the singer for the Rainbow tune which comes from his tenure in the famous band created by Richie Blackmore. Speaking of Blackmore we also get a recent tune from his former band Deep Purple which now finds guitarist Steve Morse slinging the axe.

The Twisted Sister tune appears to be one of the re-recordings that were done for “Still Hungry”, a completely re-done “Stay Hungry”. I had my reservations about that album, but at least fans that didn’t purchase it can get a taste of what they missed. Add some Alice Cooper and Stratovarius to the mix and you have a very well-rounded Metal release. What I like about these kind of samplers is how they give you a solid idea about what the label is up to at the moment or had recently released to the fans. Money is tight all around and one of the things people are cutting back on is their music purchases. At least the freebies let people load up their music players and might even spur them to purchase the rest of these original albums or look deeper into the artist catalog. I would like to see these kind of release expanded to about twenty tracks as opposed to a mere ten since that lets more albums be touched upon in the end and thereby makes the overall experience a lot more fulfilling. Despite this one minor reservation, it is still priced perfectly if you are a newcomer to any of these artists and want to give them a whirl. It’s a spin you will not regret.

Track Listing:
1. Suicide Messiah – Black Label Society
2. Rapture Of The Deep – Deep Purple
3. Deep Unknown – Stratovarius
4. Detroit City – Alice Cooper
5. Holy Diver – Dio
6. Breed To Breathe – Napalm Death
7. Stay Hungry – Twisted Sister
8. Look What The Cat Dragged In – Poison
9. Kill The King – Rainbow
10. Doomsday Jesus – Black Label Society

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

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