Banzai BAM 1007, Canada, 1985
This is the Canadian pressing of Celtic Frost's first album, which I picked up at Sonic Boom last year, and is easily identified by the "speed metal" logo in the top right corner of the sleeve.
Switzerland's Celtic Frost are one of the forefathers of the extreme metal scene, possessing a raw, aggressive sound and moving easily between doomful dirge and frantic speed. They are also one of the earliest metal groups to wear what has become known as 'corpse paint' (which shouldn't be confused with the glam-influenced face paint of bands like Kiss).
Rising from the ashes of Hellhammer (who released two demos and an EP between 1983-84), Celtic Frost first released Morbid Tales as a mini-album in Germany in 1984 (Noise International N 0017). The following year the album was released in North America, on the Banzai label in Canada, and on Metal Blade (MBR 1033) in the USA. These issues were the first to add two tracks to the end of side 1 - "Dethroned Emperor" and "Morbid Tales". After a break-up and a reformation, the band declared their final end in September 2008.
I have always considered the cover image to be one of the best in metal, possessing the t-shirt in my youth and now having the sleeve framed on the wall. Fans of early Celtic Frost are recommended to check out Hellhammer and early recordings by fellow Swiss band Coroner.
Side 1 - 1. Into the Crypts of Rays (4:19) 2. Visions of Mortality (4:46) 3. Dethroned Emperor (4:35) 4. Morbid Tales (3:26)
Side 2 - 1. Procreation (of the Wicked) (4:01) 2. Return to the Eve (4:05) 3. Danse Macabre (3:51) 4. Nocturnal Fear (3:36)
Tom G Warrior-vocals/guitar; Martin Eric Ain-bass; Reed St.Mark-drums.
Listen to "Procreation (of the Wicked)" here: