Into the Void Records USA [PERMANENTLY CLOSED]

St. Paul, Minnesot'as True Metal Record Store (RIP as of Dec. 24, 2015)

Old Metal Thursday, A to Z: REALM

my white pants are a trojan horseWelcome!  We’re going back to the USA, and indeed the Upper Midwest, with Milwaukee’s technical power-thrashers REALM and their Endless War 1988 debut!

For anybody thrash-minded who enjoys a bit of mania REALM should be right in your wheelhouse.  The technical skill is immense and awe-inspiring, but even a quick casual listen should prove REALM had the songwriting chops to keep things grounded and recognizable for subsequent plays.  No part of the performance here gets away easy.  Add an awesomely spacious and gripping production, great cover art and some occasional, strangely Christian lyrics and the deal is sealed on REALM’s special place in the pre-death metal world of developed, heavy metal-influenced thrash.  A galloping and intensely listenable cover of THE BEATLES “Eleanor Rigby” ties an oddly fitting bow to this unique package.

[Sorry blokes — title track replaces the whole album since somebody had it yanked down.  Chase down the rest on YouTube, you won’t regret it]

Like their brothers-in-manic-screech-thrash TOXIK from New Jersey, REALM seem to be victims of Roadrunner Records’ short attention spans, which first turned to the death metal cash cow of the late 1980s/early 1990s and then to much more luridly commercial worlds quickly thereafter.  Thankfully we know Metal Blade has at least some of the old Roadrunner catalog for old vinyl, so…maybe?  Enjoy this stream and keep that candle burning for a surprise reissue in the near future.

Don’t forget to check out HELSTAR for a similarly technical take on the speed-thrash spectrum, either.



4 comments on “Old Metal Thursday, A to Z: REALM

  1. Passenger
    March 14, 2015

    YES!! Now I can finally post my thoughts.

    When you wrote about Paradox, I wondered if you were going to post Realm as well, as these bands had similar style on their debut albums, but progressed as the time went.

    Realm was a slightly revolutionary band, because what they presented was a little ahead of the time. Both Realm and Coroner were influential in the development of Progressive Metal (along with Crimson Glory). However, only if we take “Suiciety” into the account. Frankly, had Realm had more extreme vocals, they would be put among Atheist and Death as the 101 of Prog/Tech Death Metal. And they probably wouldn’t split up. It’s sad because they had 3rd album almost ready, but they never completed it.

    Trivia time: the band Obituary claimed twice the cover for the albums that were supposed to be someone’s else. First, the cover for “Slowly we rot” was supposed to be the cover of Realm’s “Endless War”, and the cover for “Cause of Death” was supposed to go for Sepultura’s “Arise”.

    Because I don’t want to post too much (I already do), I also feel like mentioning A for Atrophy, D for Defiance, and H for Heathen or Hexx, for those who are reading this column, because these bands are worth remembering.

    BTW, I think I know what will go for T, and I guess that this band will have an “x” and “k” in their name!

    Cheers and thanks for spotlighting great bands!

    • Neil
      March 14, 2015

      Thanks man! That’s amazing trivia regarding the cover art…had no idea. I think the covers ended up in the appropriate places when all is said and done.

      Great guess on T. I’m still deciding if I should go with my original instinct on that one. Cheers!

  2. Pingback: Old Metal Thursday, A to Z: TOXIK | Into the Void Records USA

  3. Pingback: Quick Old Metal Thursday, A to Z: XENTRIX | Into the Void Records USA

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