Friday Morning Metal – Graveyard – Satan’s Finest

Woo throwback protometal from Sweden! Graveyard’s been around since 2006 but their sound is the raw brooding riffs and vocals you’d expect coming from basements, garages, and clubs all throughout the early 70’s.

Satan’s Finest has some great breakdowns, fuzzy vocals & guitars, and killer drum work. The slow burn from the breakdown at around the 3:40 mark back into the combo vocals and guitar solo is haunting and worth a couple relistens.

I assume their album is available on 8-track, or it was released then and they’re time travelers. Either way, go listen to this.

Friday Morning Metal – Elm Street – Metal is the Way

Elm Street’s “Metal is the Way” popped on Spotify for me, and from the name I assumed it’d be similar to Manowar’s Brothers in Metal. But man, it’s a rollercoaster of styles smashed into one song. Thankfully it’s 6 minutes long, so each section has some room to breathe.

It starts off as a noodly 80’s speed throwback, holding in as an instrumental for a while, with solid guitar riffs soaring across the salt flats. But then it’s got this acoustic breakdown that sounds like a Metallica ballad, what transitions into a big bombastic chorus of METAL IS THE WAY. Because it is.

At first it seemed really jarring, the juxtaposition of big fast distortion with plinky plunky verses, but after a while I came to the realization that this would be great for interval training. Take a break during the breakdowns, ramp up with the drums, and go all out during the chorus. By the end of the song, you’ll probably need a solid breather.

Friday Morning Metal – No Return – The Crimson Rider

This is some fast and aggressive metal here from No Return, a French Thrash band since the 90’s, but the vocals are just so death metaltastic. But French Metal is fun to find, and these guys are good at what they’re doing, so it’s not the worst thing in the world that the singer sounds like Cookie Monster hopped up on PCP.

Clocking in at close to 6 minutes, the song gives plenty of opportunity to showcase the shreddy guitars, frenetic drums, and crazy noodly guitar solos. If only the vocals were like Havok, or even Alestorm.

So if you like growly vocals, give it a shot, it’s probably right in your wheelhouse. If not, still give it a spin!

Friday Morning Metal – Enforcer – Katana

This has popped up more than a few times on Spotify, and for good reason. Enforcer’s bringing classic speed metal into the 21st century, and Katana’s a killer example of it.

There’s vocal harmonizing on the chorus! There’s chuggy guitars! Big bombastic drums! And a wicked killer double solo!

Everything about Enforcer is big and awesome and fun, and I really hope at some point they play in Seattle.

Friday Morning Metal – Helloween – Hocus Pocus

Helloween has been melting faces since 1984, and this cover of Focus’s Hocus Pocus is no exception. This should be in the mix for any Halloween party playlist, or killer road trip playlist. The guitars just straight shred, and the drum solos are killer.

It gives off a hell of a Deep Purple/late 70’s hard rock vibe, which makes sense, given when Focus was prominent. But they took the song and kept true to the feel without overly metalicizing it. The guitar solo at the 4-minute mark is a total shred fest too.

Oh and the yodeling is fantastic.

And if you’d like to hear the original, here it is on NBC’s Midnight Special!

Friday Morning Metal – Toehider – It’s So Fikkis

WOO PROGGY STUFF! This song popped up on Spotify Discovery Weekly and is pretty interesting. The vocals give off a strong Andrew Lloyd Webber vibe, which I normally don’t dig, but it fits really well into the funky bass, interesting drumming, and noodly guitars really well. Oh and there’s a keyboard in the mix to really cement the progginess.

The breakdown sounds like it should’ve been part of the Miami Soundmachine, too.

So if you’re looking to up your prog, hear some slappy bass, and generally rock out, Toehider’s pretty legit. Give them a shot!

Friday Morning Metal – Friday the 13th but Metal

There are a ton of metal covers of the Friday the 13th theme on the Youtube. Unfortunately, most of them have drum machine drums that sound like Pip fartin on a snare drum and that’s not cool.

But there was one from Chris Holland Music, called “Groovy Goalie,” what sounds like a combo of the theme and a b-side from an 8-bit metal cover album. It’s really solid, and a hell of a lot better than the other ones I dug through before landing on this.

Anyway, enjoy what could also be a song from Castlevania!

Friday Morning Metal – Persuader – Twisted Eyes

I guess this is kinda power thrash or something? Whatever it is, Persuader sounds like Blind Guardian kicked into overdrive, and it’s pretty killer.

Twisted Eyes starts with the “I am god” line from Malice, or Jack Donaghy on 30 Rock, then just boots you in the solar plexus with frenetic drumming and the kind of guitar work that should be blasted when charging into battle. The breakdown features what sounds like harpsichord, before driving into a solid guitar solo, full of the noodlies you want in power metal.

The vocals sound an awful lot like the dude from Blind Guardian, which is pretty great, he’s a welcome addition to any power metal. Which makes sense, as I guess a few of the guys from Persuader left to join that band.

Behold the majesty! And a fade out outro!

Friday Morning Metal – Demon – Night of the Demon

Can’t pass up on more NWoBHM, this time Night of the Demon from Demon. Their album was called Night of the Demon as well, so they were close to the trifecta.

The song has a great sound, with a killer chorus and squeadly guitars. And you can’t go wrong with heavy syncopation in the verses. I do dig the vocals, they have that solid combo of musical chops but kinda grittiness that makes singing about demons sound great.

Oh and the song is like 3 and a half minutes long. They don’t overstay their welcome, though they’re a welcome addition to any metal playlist.

Friday Morning Metal – Diablo Blvd – Sing from the Gallows

This song’s got a weird mix to it. It sounds like industrial with a crooner on top of it, which doesn’t sound like a good combo, but they pull it off really well. Kinda like the Cult maybe? But a big sludgier. The interlude is properly haunting, and it drops into a solid guitar solo.

So if you’re into driving drums, chugga guitars, and borderline crooners, give them a shot. You’ll be in for a treat.