MEDIEVAL STEEL are no strangers to the fans of underground metal. Their self-titled EP have gained a mythical status, not only for their otherworldly songwriting but also for the legendary title track, that has gained a place in the metal hymn pantheon. Years have passed, obscurities rose to the light, therefore the MEDIEVAL STEEL material was always a key reference for the obscure US Metal realm.
“The Dungeon Tapes” compilation was first introduced in 2005 and included the tracks from the self-titled EP and a selection of songs from the band’s early demos. An excellent opportunity to enjoy straight 80’s metal tracks like “Eyes of Fire”, “To kill a king” or “Battle beyond the Stars”. There are also some more melodic / catchy touches on tracks like “Tears in the Rain”, quite enjoyable I would add. All tracks share the same lever of high-quality songwriting and performing, which means that the demo songs are not inferior to the EP ones.
The music itself seldom strays from the standard 80’s American metal sound. Therefore, you should be able to detect the classic IRON MAIDEN / JUDAS PRIEST / UFO / KISS influences and a vibe that reminded me of bands like RIOT, SHOK PARIS, VIRGIN STEELE, JAG PANZER (“Chain of Command” era) etc.
What came as a surprise was the new tracks -for then- “Ghost from the Battlefield” and “Lost in the City” which I could hardly believe that they were songs to be presented during the mid-00s, they -still- sound and feel as if they were composed in the early 80s. Amazing!
As for the EP songs, they are beyond any appraisal, they belong to Heavy Metal History.
Personal highlights, apart from the self titled track? The magnificent “To kill a king”, the epic “Battle Beyond the Stars” and the groovy “Lost in the Battlefield”.
We can for sure point that this particular compilation marks an important period for the band as it was actually their first release since their reunion back in 2003. It is now reissued again on Skol Records, 16 years after its initial edition, it comes with remastered sound that does justice to the band’s music. Those who have missed this release back then, can get it now. Lost Realm Records will release the vinyl edition.
The “Dungeon Tapes” is a one of those compilations that should never stray from your CD player. Even when there are lots of new releases, it always finds its way there. Don’t miss it.
Check the discussion about the album on our forum pages.