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.


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Malibu Barbi - Ain't Life Swell
 front of single Malibu Barbi - Ain't Life Swell
 back of single

Malibu Barbi - Ain't Life Swell

(Harp Records, 1992)
Sadly, this single is nowhere near their GODLY "Rude Girls" EP in terms of quality (perhaps due to three of the members leaving to join CHASTAIN). It's still decent though, with the band adopting a more modern approach to heavy metal. The rap-metal on the closer "Party With Death" was probably a pretty unique thing for an all-female metal band to do in 1992. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Mantis - Forever With You / Love From The Heart
 front of single Mantis - Forever With You / Love From The Heart
 back of single

Mantis - Forever With You / Love From The Heart

( Dr. Don Ayres Records, 1983)
Judging by an old band picture, showing a bunch of long haired dregs clad in chains and leather, it's easy to get fooled into thinking this was a pretty hard rockin' band back in the 80's. Perhaps they were (at least the b-side suggests so), but why then put one of the cheesiest ballads known to man as the freakin' a-side on the promotional single for your upcoming album? WHY? As far as I know the album never got released until a digital version emerged several decades later, and I can only guess why. Learn this lesson, kids! If you want to get your big break as a metal band, at least play metal. Simple as that. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Metro Hotel - Somebody's Kid / Back To The Grindstone
 front of single Metro Hotel - Somebody's Kid / Back To The Grindstone
 back of single

Metro Hotel - Somebody's Kid / Back To The Grindstone

(private, 1981)
The a-side is not entirely AOR-free hard rock. Be warned! However, cranking up the tempo on the b-side puts this Southern California act firmly in Mark II-era DEEP PURPLE or early RAINBOW territory. "Back To The Grindstone" is really catchy, organ-driven, with that back-to-the-70's feel, without being too unoriginal. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Minotaur - Burner / Witch-hunt 
 front of single Minotaur - Burner / Witch-hunt 
 back of single

Minotaur - Burner / Witch-hunt

(Ranger Records, 1984)
If Paul Di'Anno somehow had an unknown twin, he definitely sang on this single. "Burner" is proof that this Canadian outfit must have been huge fans of the two first IRON MAIDEN albums, to the point of trying to recreate the sound in every possible way. No points for originality perhaps, but plenty for being absolutely kick-ass. This is definitely a top tier North American heavy metal single which the Metal Gods demand you acquire immediately! Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Missing In Action - I Don't Mind / Summer Song
 front of single Missing In Action - I Don't Mind / Summer Song
 back of single

Missing In Action - I Don't Mind / Summer Song

(Vault Records, 1984)
Looking at the cover and the band name might seduce you into thinking this is some form of ultra-obscure forgotten metal masterpiece. But it's sadly not. If you stretch your imagination, you can compare the solos to Invasion-era MANILLA ROAD merged with a healthy dose of that ringing guitar tone used by The Edge from U2. But only if you stretch your imagination. While you get a little bit of fancy guitar work on the a-side, the songs in general are far too much in pop rock territory to be of any interest to even the most open minded metal head. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
Mystery Girls - The Axe Is Gonna Swing / No Emotion front of single Mystery Girls - The Axe Is Gonna Swing / No Emotion back of single

Mystery Girls - The Axe Is Gonna Swing / No Emotion

(Missile Records, 1987)
Originally an all-female NY band, starting out as a punk/power pop outfit. By the time of this, their final release, they had decided to forego the power pop sound for a more punky metal one as well as letting a few dudes join their ranks. I'm not sure if there is any relationship between these two events though. "No Emotion" gives more than just a slight nod to classic NWOBHM stalwarts GIRLSCHOOL, which means you really can't afford to let this one pass. Rating: - Rarity: - Country: 
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...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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