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  • Nazareth: Expect No Mercy/Close Enough for Rock 'n' Roll/No Mean City/PLay 'n' the Game- been in the mood for some classic, heavy '70s Nazareth lately, and these are some of my favorites.

  • Blue Cheer: Vincebus Eruptum/OutsideInside/Blue Cheer/New! Improved!/The Original Human Being/The Beast is Back/Highlights and Lowlives/Dining With the Sharks/Oh! Pleasant Hope- though I've owned their first two bulldozing proto-metal releases for years, decided to check out the rest of their discography recently. Most of the rest of the late '60s & early '70s releases are more in a bluesy, classic rock style, but still very good, while the '80s reformation brought them back to metallic places once again.

  • Alice Cooper: Flush the Fashion-very underrated early '80s release that started his new wave/punk phase for a few years.

  • Bloodrock: Bloodrock/Bloodrock 2/Bloodrock 3/At Last!-great early albums from this underrated heavy act from the '70s.

  • Grand Funk Railroad: Shinin' On - perhaps my favorite of the later period Grand Funk repertoire, this one has some great hits as well as heavy rockers. Though I've always favored the more raw, heavy early years, the mid period material has really grown on me nicely over the years.

  • Hawkwind: Blood of the Earth- a very solid recent release from the kings of space rock.

  • Judas Priest: Turbo/Ram it Down- hadn't listened to these in YEARS, but decided to pull them out recently as I'm totally hooked by the new Priest CD Redeemer of Souls. Funny thing is, I've hated these 2 for years, but revisiting them now I actually like them quite a bit. Go figure.

  • Argent: All Together Now- here's another one I haven't listened to in probably 15 years. Holds up really well, and a great mix of hard rock & prog, with some stellar keyboard work from Rod.

  • Blues Pills: Blues Pills- man, this is such a great album from a young band that has a very bright future ahead of them.

  • Bachman Turner Overdrive: BTO/BTO II/Head On/Not Fragile/Four Wheel Drive/Freeways/Bachman Turner Overdrive- on a real BTO kicks these days, and all these original albums simply kick some serious ass all over the place. Heavy, heavy stuff!

  • The Doobie Brothers: The Captain and Me/What Were Once Vices are Now Habits/Toulouse Street/Stampede/Sibling Rivalry/One Step Closer/Minute By Minute- after seeing them live recently, in which they were the best I've ever seen them, I've been on a real Doobies binge. Here's a mix of some classic & newer stuff I've been groovin' to lately.

  • Renaissance: Scheherazade and Other Stories- magical stuff, not my favorite by the band, but in their top 3 for sure.

  • The Winery Dogs: The Winery Dogs- left this one for a while after it first came out, but getting back into it again the last few weeks. Really solid debut, and looking forward to more from them.

  • California Breed: California Breed- another fine recent debut from a new supergroup, but now that Jason Bonham has already flown the coop it seems like it might be more of a Glenn Hughes vehicle. We shall see. Great album nonetheless.

  • Budgie: Budgie/Squawk/Never Turn Your Back on a Friend/In For the Kill- unbelievable just how heavy these first few Budgie albums are. It's criminal that this band isn't listed as one of the most important early metal bands ever.

  • Masterplan: Novum Initium- new vocalist, no problem. I though that with Jorn Lande leaving this band might lose a step, but At Vance singer Rick Altzi has slotted in quite nicely.

  • Looking Glass: Looking Glass/Subway Serenade- two very fine albums that no one seems to know anything about other than the hit single "Brandy", which was one of my favorite songs of the early '70s when I was a little kid. Classy music all around and worth a listen if all you ever heard of this band was the hit.

  • Venom: Eine Kliene Nachtmusik- this is one hell of a live album, and probably the only Venom I'll ever need.

  • Yes: Heaven & Earth- the jury is still out on this one, but it's a nice enough album for me to declare it's not a complete failure. If for nothing else, it's a great vocal performance for new guy & Glass Hammer veteran Jon Davison.

  • Saga: Sagacity- these legendary Canadian proggers just never slow down. Another killer album from them!

  • Marillion: Clutching at Straws- one of my all time favorite prog albums, but admittedly one that I've gotten a bit burnt out on in recent years. A night fueled by Southern Comfort recently changed all that, and had a great time with Fish & the boys once again!

  • Deep Purple: Come Taste the Band- just love this album more and more as time goes on. One of the most underrated Purple albums in my view.

  • KISS: Alive- saw them in concert recently, and just had to groove to this classic live album.

  • King Crimson: Red - classic in every sense of the word...

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