Friday 5: IndEPendence Day
Happy Friday, MetalSucks reader! Welcome back to MetalSucks Friday 5, our new series that appears every Friday (duh) on MetalSucks (duhh) and involves the list of five (duhhh).
Here’s how it works: A list of the five best/worst/weirdest/whatever somethings is posted by one of your beloved MetalSucks contributors (or by one of our buds like you?). Then our cherished readers check it out, have a chuckle, then chime in with a list of the same. No sweat, just whatever springs to mind, k? (Just like that movie about those losers working at a Chicago record store!) After all, it’s Friday — the day dedicated by the gods to mindless, fun time-wasting. We took a break for Independence Day, but we’re back for some IndEPendence :)
Your Five Favorite Metal EPs
Anso DF, MetalSucks Senior Editor
Haunting The Chapel
An EP is more useful to its creators than to its listeners: A hold-over, a raid of vaults, a cash-in, an appetizer, a contract-fulfillment. But in a few cases, a mini-release is a perfect one. Why? Well, maybe a small set is a manageable load for a band whose songwriting muscle is undeveloped; perhaps a scraped-together shorty must slake the thirst of a fanbase in the grips of mania; or, it might allow a band an exit before reluctant listeners grow annoyed by their bad habits. To wit: For fans who joined Slayer in progress at the 1988 release of South Of Heaven, the early Haunting The Chapel EP played like the spirited fumblings of four young Slayer superfans. In other words, awesome!
2. Guns N’ Roses
G N’ R Lies
As debut EPs by a seminal hair metal band go, Ratt’s rough ‘n dumb self-titled outing has aged better — but Guns’ rare and pseudo-live Live ?!*@ Like A Suicide EP joined to four new acoustic jams is a wilder, funnier experience. Sure, it shits on its own shoes via careless language (“One In A Million”), tunelessness (“Patience”), and a merely fair redux (“You’re Crazy”), so Lies is best viewed as the perfectly-timed delivery of a pizza whose toppings stuck to the box: patchy, messy, and exhilarating.
In Case You Don’t Feel Like Showing Up [Live]
The first half of 2014 has hosted a half-dozen mega-EPs, from the artsy to the arch, but not since 1997 has an EP matched the achievement of Ministry’s pre-breakthrough ‘tweener release. After all, it’s too short, it’s not fresh material, and it’s live (mostly)! Plus, it hamstrings itself further by omitting two jams that appear on the accompanying home video! Still, ICYDFLSU[L] is Ministry’s quintessential release both for its own excellence — and for its brisk pace that allows for none of the clunky filler that mars the Ministry oeuvre.
The $5.98 EP: Garage Days Re-Revisited
Not just a great listen, GDR-R is a public service: A set of quick, loose covers of songs that most would never have encountered. I mean, in 1987, were you aware of Diamond Head? Budgie? Holocaust? Fuck no. We hardly encounter them here in the age of the internet! Not to mention, Metallica’s versions crush the originals. Yes, even the Killing Joke jam.
5. Nine Inch Nails
Nine Inch Nails is not a metal band, and they especially weren’t a metal band upon the breakthrough of their dancey, rappy debut album around 1990. But in 1992, Trent Reznor’s sophomore release of four songs (plus interludes and nice but inessential covers) arrived flaunting, like, five hall-of-fame riffs and a prescient suicidal angst — at a moment when commercial metal was beginning its shameful scramble to sound more Black Album. A year later, Bob Mould’s Sugar, too, out-heavied heavy music via the Beaster EP. Great save, guys!
Your turn! Have an awesome wknd!