They had obscure & exotic Metal content, they had primitive & ugly sleeves, they even had a number system! I can't think of a better setup for a Corroseum-special than on the enigmatic Rockmapa-singles from former Czechoslovakia. I'm sure they're familiar to any and all fans & collectors of East-Euro Metals, but I've yet to see a complete list of the series on the web so here we go...

"Rockmapa" was the brainchild of
Petr Janda, guitarist/vocalist of rock/HR band OLYMPIC and they were all released on the state-owned Supraphon label (apparently there's both a book and a TV documentary made on the subject). 2 major revelations came up in my research: 1. There's no less than 26 of them! and 2. a large part of them aren't really Metal at all, so I guess sorting out the what's & the what's-nots is another good argument to make a page like this. To clarify matters all off-topic titles are in italics.

Several of the 7"s came out with alternate sleeves and I've tried to supply as many of these variations as possible with picture links below, though these notes are obviously not complete. I'll add more as I find them... It should also be mentioned that all back sleeves looked the same as the fronts, but without the black text & logos printed on them.

Some of these tracks were also compiled on a couple of compilations, of which volume 1 and 2 are reviewed in the Compilation Encyclopedia. "Rockmapa 3" was to be released by Supraphon in 1991, but was cancelled for unknown reasons. It later saw the light of day on CD as "Rockmapa 4", on Petr Janda's
Best I.A. label in 1993. In other words the completists can sleep safely - there is no elusive "Rockmapa 3" compilation out there, missing in your collection.

* = also featured on the "Rockmapa" compilation LP.
** = also featured on the "Rockmapa 2" compilation LP.

Update:
Read more about these and all (!) other Eastern Bloc Heavy Metal singles in
The Complete* Encyclopedia Of FirstWaveOfEasternHeavyMetal Singles!
1. ARAKAIN - Proc*/Amadeus
Released: 1989 - cat#: 11 0223-7311

PowerSpeedThrash of international class, almost reaching Holy Terror-heights on the faster parts. Even the vocals reminds me of Keith Deen at times.

Other versions: rockmapa w/ dislocated logo.

Rating:


2. TÖRR - Kult Ohnĕ*/Kladivo Na Čarodĕjnice
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0224-7311

The Rockmapa-release most commonly seen on want lists but far from the rarest one. C.Frost-like Doom/proto-DM greatness with haunting chants & unholy vocals. Later featured on the "Törritorium" 3CD.
Other versions: Galaxie-sleeve, swirl sleeve, swirl sleeve #2, swirl sleeve with "Rockmapa 2" text.

Rating:


3. KERN - V Sobotu Ne*/Exploze
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0225-7311

Not as exciting as their earlier 7"s. On side A we get a heavily Accept-influenced mid-pace EuroMetal standard, minus the Udo-vocals. B stands for 'Ballad' and 'Boring'.

Other versions: baby sleeve.

Rating:


4. VITACIT - Strach/Poutnik Zivotem*
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0226-7311

"Strach" is great Speed/Heavy starting off with one of those riffs you've probably heard a 100 times before but still starts your head banging in seconds. "Poutnik Zivotem" is a more original creepy/crawly affair, a bit like "Angel Rat"-era Voivod.
Other versions: Galaxie-sleeve, wall sleeve.

Rating:


5. SAPON - Sance Pro Tebe*/Draci Doupe
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0227-7311

Good Purple-HR/HM on side A, nicking a few moves from "Highway Star". They get more Power/fast Metal on the flipside, but like the first song it suffers a lot from monotony & lack of originality.

Other versions: Galaxie-sleeve.

Rating:


6. MOTORBAND - Fajnovej Den/Je To Spas*
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0228-7311

They're not exactly shy about their influences. First we get a "Heaven & Hell"-sounding heavy rocker spiced up by some oozing aah-ah's, then comes a speedy number quite similar to "Freewheel Burning". Steal from the best I say!

Rating:


7. POHODA ROCK - Muzikantsky Blues*/Buran
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0229-7311

A run-of-the-mill slow blues on side A and a most distinct EastEuro-brand of jerky pop-rock on side B. Avoid.

Rating:
8. ABRAXAS - Rebel / Říční Proud
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0230-7311

Completely colorless generic rock with some mild new wave flavours. A terrible waste of a cool band name.

Rating:


9. TITANIC - Figurina/Bludnej Kruh
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0235-7311

The pompy ballad with a "nah-nah-nah"-chorus on side A is OK if you're in the mood, but "Bludnej Kruh" is the Metal we seek. It starts off a bit on the basic side but improves with a mean, chanting chorus and heavy end part sounding suspiciously similar to "For Whom The Bell Tolls".
Other versions: Galaxie sleeve.

Rating:
10. PANIKA - Bezdez**/Vysocany Liben
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0236-7311

Lightweight pop-wave with a touch of 60's popadelica and Grace Slick-like fem vox. With a name like that you'd at least hope for some half-decent punk rock :(

Other versions: Wall sleeve.

Rating:


11. DUX - Narkoman**/Jen Tak Si Hvizdnout
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0319-7311

Good Hard Rock with strong riffing and keyboards that adds more of an epic touch than a commercial one. The B-side is the heavier of the 2 and offers some more Metallic guitarwork. +1 for the raspy vocals - this is how czech rock should be sung!

Rating:


12. TAXI - Sedmnáct**/Laska, Cit A Kousek
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0320-7311

"Sedmnact" is pomp/aor of the melancholic sort, which at least makes it tolerable and won't exterminate every diabetic within a 1-mile radius, at least not at once. The flipside comes w/ some catchy guitar- and vocal parts but productionwise this is pure pop-HR.

Rating:


13. ARAKAIN - Ku Klux Klan/Orion
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0328-7311

KKK = Genre-defining Speed Metal / "Orion" = mid-pace PowerThrash of the dark, heavy & mean kind. Really good stuff, even if it's hardly breaking any new ground.

Other versions: wall sleeve.

Rating:


14. GENERAL BASS - Život Na Dlani**/Kolemjdouci
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0338-7311

Possitively useless soft-rock-fluff. That jazzy, laid-back, "talented" crap that teachers and christians listen to.

Other versions: wall sleeve.

Rating:


15. MOTORBAND - Heavy Metal/V Risi Ptaku
Released: 1989 / cat#: 11 0350-7311

Proud, marching Heavy Metal with a great chorus. Accept-touches albeit a tad more intricate. The flipside gets more epic a la Aria or Credo and I'd probably rate it their mightiest song ever! The quintessential Motorband-release.

Rating:


16. VITACIT - Spadla Klec/Drakula
Released: 1990 / cat#: 11 0402-7311

Good'n'fast Euro-Metal with catchy riffin' is what we get on side A. B-side "Dracula" is an excellent, more diverse piece, coupling Speed Metal-bursts with slower fist-banging verses. Hardly the most original band of the series but like their earlier 7"s it by far outshines their LPs.

Rating:


17. RETEZ - 1415**/1415 Chast II
Released: 1990 / cat#: 11 0412-7311

The first few minutes bear tidings of Drakar-like Mystic Metal of Doomic weirdness, then the tempo changes to more mid-pace power/epic material with both music & vox drawing a lot of influences from King Diamond. Part II gets more intricate and displays even more obvious KD-worship, but damn they're awesome at this!

Rating:


18. DETTO - Zlej Tejden**/Tanec Ve Spanelskych Botach
Released: 1990 / cat#: 11 0413-7311

"Zlej Tejden" begins with an unpromising VanHalen-style riff but the song as a whole turns out a great, uptempo 'Mainstream Metal' tune spiced with yummy Maiden-solos. "Tanec Ve.." is an entirely different affair, sounding more like early 80s HR/HM in the NWOHBM/Accept-vein.

Other versions: rockmapa w/out logo.

Rating:


19. KABAT - Koleda koleda**/Spadla Klec
Released: 1990 / cat#: 11 0434-7311

A bit of an oddball. Thrash of the mean & nasty though not too fast kind. sort of a mix between Korrozia Metalla and The Krixhjälters/Omnitron with those unexpected breaks. Brilliant shit, really. Apparently they're huge in the Czech Rep today, but have shifted to more modern hard rock.

Rating:


20. MERLIN - Nevada**/Posledni Boj
Released: 1990 / cat#: 11 0440-7311

Excellent melodic Metal/HR, where the A-side represents the HR-part and the Running Free-sounding Posledni Boj delivers the Metal. A cool & catchy "nwobhm" gem 10 years too late and from the wrong part of the world.

Rating:


21. MOTORBAND - Mejdan/Zivotni Styl
Released: 1990 / cat#: 11 0441-7311

Slightly more mellow than the 2 first offerings yet still honest, classy Euro-Metal. The melodic choruses sound fresh & catchy rather than slick & mainstream and they still have a few surprises up their sleeves so they're not on the level of their mediocre debut LP just yet.

Rating:


22. ODYSSEA - Nervi Mi Nervi / Divadelní Spolecnost J.K. Tyla
Released: 1990 / cat#: 11 0442-7311

Rater mainstream Hard Rock, like your average, late 80's Purple fans with well-groomed hair. I wouldn't call it 100% commercial filth though, just generally inoffensive. B-side = "power ballad" with symphonic ambitions. I've heard worse.

Rating:


23. SPILBERK - Boure Dozniva/Nikdy Vic
Released: 1990 / cat#: 11 0468-7311

Slick aor with some "groovy" parts on the A-side and a slightly heavier, more atmospheric piece on the flip.

Rating:


24. DUX - Obraz Co Nemusi Mit Ram/Posledni Zvoneni
Released: 1990 / cat#: 11 0492-7311

Bland mainstream rock with none of the HR/HM vibes of their previous single. Acoustic schmallad B-side.

Rating:


25. BEATOVER - Beethoven/Mam Rad Velky Veci
Released: 1990 / cat#: 11 0495-7311

"Beethoven" = 1/2 dark & brooding Metal, 1/2 Mr. B's 5th - it may sound a bit corny the first few seconds but by Crom it works! "Mam Rad.." continues the heavy Eastern dakness like a classic HM/doom take on Törr. (Possibly another nod to Citron's "Radegast"?) The Cool Hidden Secret of the series.

Rating:


26. ČERNÁ A BÍLÁ - Zlý Srdce/Černá A Bílá
Released: 1990 / cat#: 11 0523-7311

The A-side is quite an odd mix of soft, jazzy rock and HR guitars. Quite good actually, thanx to the excellent fem vox and melodies. Nothing even remotely rockin' on side B though, but those vocals makes this smooth jazz-rock piece kinda nice.

Rating:


This page was made possible in no small part thanx to the the
help of Miloš Kratochvíl and Francesco Tattini. Hails!

(Check out Miloš' label/mailorder www.monsternation.cz
for obscure Czech & other Metal...)

 
 
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