Is there any mystery left in Olde Metal Hunting? A harsh question perhaps, but to the cynics and sceptics The Corroseum's answer will always be "Yes!" Plenty of features on this site will prove this point, often dealing with artifacts possibly even more obscure than those presented below. Yet strangely enough, the

US and Canadian Heavy Metal 7"-scene

is still one of the least explored niches in the domain of Old Metal Vinyl Collecting, at least in relation to its size and popularity. Hence forum member and long-time fan & collector of rare American 7"s, Kristian "Khnud" Knutsson has taken on this impossible feat of documentation, making this the 3rd and - surely in the long run - largest Singles-Special of The Corroseum to date...


A note on rarity Most of the releases reviewed herein are to be considered rare, usually released in either 500 or 1000 copies by small independent labels, or by the bands themselves. The rating is therefore an attempt at approximating how often an item shows up for sale.

 

= Rather common, a copy can most likely be found without too much effort

= Uncommon, still turns up a few times per year

= Rare, you'll most likely have to search a bit before you find one

= Very rare, expect to have to search several years before one turns up

= More or less impossible to find. The number of known copies can be counted with the fingers of one hand

 

Also, please note that rarity scores might change over time. A good example would be the Hazardous Waste 45, which was once believed to have been released in only 200 copies and was at that point a very expensive and desired item. Many years later another 300 copies were discovered in a warehouse and the item is, at the time this is written, reasonably easy to find at an affordable price.

 

A note on ratingReviews are subjective. What I think is great, someone else might think is crap. And the other way around. I strongly suggest using the reviews as a general guide and not as a definitive quality indicator.

 

= Bad. You probably don't need this unless you're a manic completist (like yours truly)

= Ok, but nothing spectacular

= Good, definitely worth checking out

= Great, buy or die!

= You need this more than oxygen...

 

Finally, I'd like to thank John Haupt, without him this project would never have been possible.


View the 20 latest entries below, or browse by letter:
# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z v/a
VXN - Putting Love Aside front of single VXN - Putting Love Aside back of single

VXN - Putting Love Aside

(Osmosis Records, 1985)
Very well executed melodic metal in the vein of LEE AARON. Both songs appear on the band's forthcoming album, and luckily they chose two of the better songs to grace this single. Don't be fooled - this isn't AOR (not even close) - a moniker often slapped on the full length due to it containing some more "questionable" elements. The 45 is also way rarer that the LP, appearing only very infrequently and often fetching high prices. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Siren - Metro-Mercenary front of single Siren - Metro-Mercenary back of single

Siren - Metro-Mercenary

(SIREN Music Publishing, 1984)
No introductions necessary here, Siren have been a household name in the obscure leaning metal community for decades. But, being pro equality, they shall be judged just as any other band on this site. This, their debut, is somewhat less progressive and power metal oriented than their later efforts, a bit like the first HADES 45. Both songs are intricate, dark and they both rip, making this an essential piece in your collection. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Rock Corps - Rock Corps front of single Rock Corps - Rock Corps back of single

Rock Corps - Rock Corps

(Core Productions, 1984)
You can safely skip the a-side on this one, as this outfit (most likely hailing from somewhere in Illinois), opted for a very basic heavy rock and roll number on the front page. This approach is completely beyond me, because the b-side is a completely different affair altogether. Heavy, galloping, much more varied, and just about a hundred times as interesting. The idea of preferring generic over varied is just absurd, but I suppose I'm saying this about 40 years too late. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Rex Vector - Breathe Fire front of single Rex Vector - Breathe Fire back of single

Rex Vector - Breathe Fire

(Metal Rock Records, 1985)
It's been said numerous times before, and I'll be unoriginal for once (I hope) and join the masses praising the title track here. Complete and utter metal madness, it rarely gets better than this. By the end of the song, you'll be breathing fire for sure. Unfortunately these New York lads failed to repeat their a-side accomplishment on the flip, instead opting for a more glammy arena rock approach (to prove they were commercially viable, no doubt). "Sit Tight" is not bad by any means, it just sort of pales in comparison to the diamond that is "Breathe Fire". Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Quick Change - Someone Is Watching Me front of single Quick Change - Someone Is Watching Me back of single

Quick Change - Someone Is Watching Me

(Garage, 1984)
Tribal drumming? Not a common thing in the metal world back in 1984, until a certain band from Brazil made it their signature move. But this 45 in question is no mid 90's groove thrash precursor, this is more of a PALI GAP gone 80's US metal kinda hybrid. What's not to like, eh? Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Lace - Nervous Breakdown front of single Lace - Nervous Breakdown back of single

Lace - Nervous Breakdown

(private, 1985)
Don't let the band name or picture fool you. While this Queens, N.Y. quartet obviously took a lot of inspiration from bands like KISS and MÖTLEY CRÜE, there's no hint of glam in the music. Just pure heavy metal played with both passion and aggression. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
King Neptune - The Mystic Sea front of single King Neptune - The Mystic Sea back of single

King Neptune - The Mystic Sea

(private, 1988)
This is the second release featuring singer and assumed general surfer dude WALLY PASSET (formerly of SNAKEBYTE fame) as well as bassist BENNY PETRELLA. The more metallic side of this navy blue release - "The Mystic Sea" - most likely contains one of the most memorable choruses ever ("She wants love, I want rock and roll. It it asking too much?"). Sadly the flipside "Horizon" has way too much of an arena rock feel to it, firmly placing this single in the "one decent, one filler" department. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Essie X And The Banned - 2 Bad 2 Be 4 Given front of single Essie X And The Banned - 2 Bad 2 Be 4 Given back of single

Essie X And The Banned - 2 Bad 2 Be 4 Given

(Nashinal Records, 1985)
Yet another one of those "naughty female singer" releases, and a pretty generic glam metal oriented one at that. I'm getting tired of making all these MÖTLEY CRÜE comparisons, but there's just no other band that comes close. So there you go. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Blown Free - Maximum Rock And Roll front of single Blown Free - Maximum Rock And Roll back of single

Blown Free - Maximum Rock And Roll

(Excelsior Records, 1982)
Totally fuzzed out hard rock greatness straight out of Houston, TX. "The Wizard" features blistering leads, howling vocals and in your face production. "My House" is more laid back and psychedelic, reminding me a bit of BORN AGAIN (on Rockadelic). A 45 that's as rare as rain in Sahara (especially with the original picture sleeve), finding a copy might be tricky but well worth the wait. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Alecstar - Taking It Over front of single Alecstar - Taking It Over back of single

Alecstar - Taking It Over

(Smart Alec Records, 1980)
The a-side is pretty generic hard rock, with drums that are way too high in the mix.
The other side is slightly better produced, but similar in style. Both sides are a bit too close to being AOR for comfort, making this a clear "for completists only" type release.
Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Anthem - Will We Go Far? front of single Anthem - Will We Go Far? back of single

Anthem - Will We Go Far?

(Face, 1982)
Balancing that sometimes thin edge between hard rock and heavy metal, this is quite slick and organic sounding (not surprising, as it contains a fair share of organ sounding keyboards) - a bit like a mix between BLUE OYSTER CULT and GENOCIDE. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Xcel - The Last Ride Of Ichabod Crane / Teaser front of single Xcel - The Last Ride Of Ichabod Crane / Teaser back of single

Xcel - The Last Ride Of Ichabod Crane / Teaser

(Accent Records, 1987)
Galloping metal in the vein of CRIMSON GLORY or QUEENSRŸCHE. This single, which features different versions than on the "Deliver This Dream" LP, was supposedly unleashed after the LP even though the backside of the sleeve mentions the LP as "soon to be released". But never mind, you should definitely aim at getting both. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Sabotage - Gentle Minds / You front of single Sabotage - Gentle Minds / You back of single

Sabotage - Gentle Minds / You

(Espionage Records, 1982)
Of all the RUSH clones out there, this is certainly one of the Rushest. Let's face it, we're almost up on TRYTAN levels of plagiarism here, with the exception that these guys from Cleveland, Ohio chose to copy "Hemispheres" instead of "Moving Pictures". They did tone down the progressive elements a bit (it's kinda hard to fit an 18 minute epic on a 7"), but also more than made up for it by adding some blistering guitar work. In fact, all members display top notch musicianship throughout, which really goes without saying considering the band they were trying to emulate. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Ryngg - Uptown / Welcome To The Garden front of single Ryngg - Uptown / Welcome To The Garden back of single

Ryngg - Uptown / Welcome To The Garden

(Ribika Records, 1982)
What do you get if you combine one part catchy up tempo hard rock (that would be the a-side) with one part mellow and dreamy psychedelia (you guessed it, that would be the b-side), and then allow it all to be fronted by an ELVIS impersonator? You might get Ryngg! Even though it's currently unknown whether or not the singer actually performed in a white jumpsuit (I'll go out on a limb and guess "no", here), he sure nailed the voice. Unfortunately, this alone will be insufficient to lift this release from out of the "curiosities" pile, as the rest of the music is far too pedestrian to invoke any further interest. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Limousine - You've Got The Power / Natural Fact front of single Limousine - You've Got The Power / Natural Fact back of single

Limousine - You've Got The Power / Natural Fact

(Nu-America, )
Perhaps released a tad too early to be included here (some sources say as early as 1975), but hey - this is my review project and I can do whatever the hell I want. And since the guitar player went on to play in HALLOWEEN, it certainly merits an inclusion. Far from being horror metal though, instead this is funky and bluesy 70's hard rock, similar to JAMUL or ALLMAN BROTHERS, but with a distinctly raw edge. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Lani - Power Surge / Judy front of single Lani - Power Surge / Judy back of single

Lani - Power Surge / Judy

(Sherwood Records, 1981)
Perhaps the most garagey inclusion in this whole review project, both musically and production wise. But I'll be damned, this minimalistic approach to home made hard rock/proto metal straight outta mum's basement actually works. "Power Surge" is so packed with mean riffs, it's easy to forget that it sounds like it was recorded on a $10 budget. Make sure to play "Judy" to the end so you can hear the tape recorder shut off - I'm not sure if the band decided to include this on purpose but it definitely serves as a fitting end to such a DIY project. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Filthy Rich - Taking Time / Searching front of single Filthy Rich - Taking Time / Searching back of single

Filthy Rich - Taking Time / Searching

(Rich Records, 1987)
A lot more polished than their privately released LP, featuring a slick hard rock song on the a-side and a slower but more powerful number on the flip. I'd hate to use the dreaded "power ballad" label but this comes pretty darn close. Still, definitely not bad for an almost power ballad. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Ded Engine - Two Bad front of single Ded Engine - Two Bad back of single

Ded Engine - Two Bad

(Genocide Records, 1983)
Often hailed as the US version of JUDAS PRIEST, these East Lansing hopefuls (hello, Malc Macmillan!) really had a lot more in common with contemporary Michigan act MEDIEVAL. Both deliver gravelly, slightly punky but definitely still metal-as-fuck, all knobs to the right-type songs throughout. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Buxx - Not This Time / Hangar 18 front of single Buxx - Not This Time / Hangar 18 back of single

Buxx - Not This Time / Hangar 18

(Panther Records, 1983)
Not quite as AOR sounding as their debut 12", meaning this is one of those rare instances where a band actually became heavier as time went by. Still, the "heavier" description is to be used with consideration here, this is still pretty light weight hard rock with frequent keyboard use. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Blood - Teaser / Go Out And Get It front of single Blood - Teaser / Go Out And Get It back of single

Blood - Teaser / Go Out And Get It

(Blood Records, 1985)
Slightly leaning towards the more punky side of the rock spectrum, and also more than slightly leaning towards the inept side of music as a whole. Not surprisingly, this has ties to the infamous SHORES OF EVENING, being released on the same private label and sharing at least one band member. I find "Go Out And Get It" to be listenable, albeit simplistic hard rock/punk, and that's about it. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z v/a
...and the mandatory, accompanying, downloadable CDR-sampler:
For comments, questions and critique praise of this guide, please visit the designated North-American Heavy Metal 7"s Guide-thread in the forum, or contact The Corroseum (all messages concerning this guide will be forwarded to Khnud)
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