'NWOTHM' (New Wave of Traditional Heavy Metal), Trad Revival Bands


During the recent wave of thrash revivalist bands that starting springing up all over the place, something else was lurking. Something that started in the early 2000s but didn't quite take off as well as all those new thrash bands. Slowly building its way up, and now in the past few years it has fucking exploded. A wave of bands, many of them from Brazil and Sweden, but all over the world as well, trying to revive the look, feel, and sound of 80s USPM, speed metal, heavy metal and NWOBHM. They dress the part, their over-the-top album artworks and their angular band logos. Replicating as closely as they can the feel of those 80s records and bands with obviously more modern production principles. They're knowledge of 80s metal is unquestionable, and they have the sound down to a science. Not an art, but a science. Everything from Mercyful Fate to Brocas Helm to Motorhead, they've labored to recreate. At least there's probably something for everyone... But is any of this shit any good?

There's so many of them. I've cataloged dozens of them. Shifting through them has been an ongoing process. As with most revivalist movements, a lot of it is generic as hell. As I said earlier, they have it down to a science. As if there's an instruction manual for 80s metal and they put everything that needs to be in there based on that. But it definitely isn't all bad. In fact it ranges from generic to pretty kickass, but never bad. There's lots of great riffing and a fuck ton of fun to be had here. I'll talk starting points and the best bands I've found so far. The majority of them have been released this year or in the last couple of years.

*NOTE* Most people on the internet group bands like Visigoth, Demon Bitch and Portrait in with these bands, and while they play more traditional style of heavy metal and they are new bands, I think there is an obvious distinction in sound and identity between them and the core revivalist movement.

Starting Points (most accessible for total noobs to metal):
Cauldron - Tomorrow's Lost ~ In Ruin
Holy Grail
Skull Fist
White Wizzard

The Best *work in progress*:
Alpha Tiger - discography
Atlantis - Hotter than a Burning Church
Axevyper - Into the Serpent's Den
Baphomet's Blood - In Satan We Trust
Booze Control - The Lizard Rider
Elm Street - Knock'em Out... With a Metal Fist
Enforcer - Diamonds ~ Death By Fire ~ From Beyond
Evil Invaders - Evil Invaders ~ Pulses of Pleasure
Dexter Ward - Randezvous With Destiny
Grey Wolf - Glorious Death
Hellraiser - Revenge of the Phoenix
Iron Curtain - Guilty as Charged
Legion - Shadow of the King ~ Warbeast
Lethal Shock - Evil Aggressor
Night Demon - Curse of the Damned
Rocka Rollas - discography
Skelator - Time of the Sword Rulers ~ Death to All Nations ~ Agents of Power
Skullwinx - discography
Steel Hammer - Steel Hammer
Witchunter - Back on the Hunt
Wolf - Wolf ~ The Black Flame ~ Ravenous

The Rest:

Aggressive Perfector
Attic (almost a Mercyful Fate tribute band)
Axe Crazy
Barrow Wight
Black Mass
Black Moor
Black Trip
Borrowed Time
Brothers of Sword
Crimson Fire
Crownz Sigil
Crystal Winds
Daily Fight
Daimond Falcom
Damned Nation
Demons Dream
Eternal Thirst
Exordium Mors
Final Sign
Fire Strike
Frade Negro
Frozen Sword
Gentry Lord
Grave Cross
Hammer King
Hazy Hamlet
Iron Driver
Iron Spell
Iron Vessel
Jet Jaguar
Leather Heart
Liquid Steel
Lurking Fear
Mean Machine
Metal Inquisitor
Midnight Chaser
Midnight Force
Midnight Priest
Moros Nyx
Mortal Whisper
Night Crime
Omery Rising
Phantom Knight
Rising Steel
Satan's Fall
Sons of Lioth
Space Vacation
Steel Machine
Steel Messiah
Steel Sentinel
Stereo Nasty
Street Lethal
Thunder Lord
Warning Sign
Within Hate
Within the Fire
Wytch Hazel
Who are you? The prince of darkness? Don't you have any friends?

Last edited by Kytokinesis at Dec 13, 2016,
Any thoughts on Convent Guilt belonging in here? Or on Convent Guilt in general -

“Who are you then?.."
"- I am part of that power which eternally wills evil and eternally works good.”
Fuck yes. Been looking for something to binge on. I noticed this thread and completely overlooked it, but it's so fucking good. I keep seeing Night Demon around the places I frequent online, but never listened. Strange. Oh well, might as well give them a go.
Yeah, Night Demon are rad. I would also put money on you digging Lethal Shock.

The Elm Street album is pretty exemplary of the modern sound and one of the most ambitious and varied albums listed. Hellraiser is also one of my favorites, they have more interesting song structures and more intricate riffs than many of the other bands. Alpha Tiger are great and maybe shouldn't even be in here as they are pretty much straight up German power metal (first album anyway). They still kinda have the feel and image of these other bands though. IDK.

Quote by Emenius Sleepus
Any thoughts on Convent Guilt belonging in here? Or on Convent Guilt in general -

They sound cool, I like it. Not really sure if they would belong here or not. Most of the bands here make some pretty big appeals to nostalgia, so I don't know if Convent Guilt are like that or not.
Who are you? The prince of darkness? Don't you have any friends?

Do Vulture's Vengeance count? You gotta listen to that EP KYTO!

reminiscent of Blind Guardian, from vocals to guitar melodies.
Holy fukk that EP kicks ass. Vocals are straight up Hansi. Lots of cool atmosphere to the riffs and melodies. Almost like the kind of cosmic/ethereal atmosphere you usually only get from black/death bands.
Who are you? The prince of darkness? Don't you have any friends?

Last edited by Kytokinesis at Nov 7, 2016,
Is revival a code word for shitty? Like a revival thrash band = a shitty thrash band?
By revival I indicate that there is some level of shallowness and imitation, but there is some really good stuff here. The interesting thing about most of these bands is that they actually get better with time. I'm continuously digging through them to find the better ones. If you'd like me to recommend a few to try out I will. If you still think they're shitty, that's fine.
Who are you? The prince of darkness? Don't you have any friends?

I'd love to have some recommendations. Although there's no promise it'll turn out good.
Check out Sumerlands. They released their debut self titled this year and it's getting a lot of heat from people like Fenriz

Also check out the Spell song Whipping Sigils. That's some brilliant stuff!
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Quote by Ozzy87_2
Ok, that Spell song sounded pretty good. Gonna take a better listen.

They have that early Angel Witch vibe, it's so damn good.

I do see your point . There is a level of amateur musicianship involved in a lot of these. However I would never compare this resurgence to thrash one.

Only because there was nothing good that came out of it. There is listenable and memorable music in this wave.

Although it is a wave, so many of these just happened to creep up at the same time and there is bound to be mediocrity. I mean, death/black had a similar thing and I agree that a lot were just mediocre metal.
Yep, definitely sounds alike Angel Witch. I really like that gnarly vocal sound that wails around the notes never really reaching them.

...there is bound to be mediocrity. I mean, death/black had a similar thing and I agree that a lot were just mediocre metal.

Black/death avoided mediocrity by promoting the top acts aggressively. The new scene just doesn't have the same kind of ratio in quality and the ones hailed as the most succesful are still just good-local-band+ level. And I don't see them rising much higher although this Spell album is listenable and I can see myself headbanging to random tunes of those other acts while sharing a drink with my fellow hessians.
This wave and its prolificness fulfills a fundamental need to have trad sounds and riffs delivered to me in metric tons.

I've only had the time to listen to snippets of that Spell album, but what I've heard is good. I'm not sure if Spell, Vultures Vengeance, and Sumerlands should even be roped in with these bands. Definitely not the latter two. Spell's first album probably fits in here.
Who are you? The prince of darkness? Don't you have any friends?

Plus most of them have awesome album art, which is almost more important than the music anyway. And speaking of thrash, I picked up a few of those along the way. Curious to hear you guys' thoughts on them.

Who are you? The prince of darkness? Don't you have any friends?

Yes I can see the nostalgia part in this one but I don't really need it in my metal. The fulfilment for me comes from the way the songs are composed (in the literal meaning). Relation to certain points of heavy metal history has no special meaning to me.
Just listened to this yesterday

it's apparently the same guy from Cauldron? I actually found it to be fairly enjoyable..better compared to Cauldron
Last edited by elatihc at Mar 6, 2017,
Nice. I will say that Spell were fucking great. If you like the Angel witch sound, Spell do it with a mark of their own style for good measure. For None and All is what I recommend.
For None and All is definitely a cool album. So catchy...

Not as good, but here's another band with the 70's vibe.
Who are you? The prince of darkness? Don't you have any friends?


Their back catalog is horrible, but I've been anticipating this album for a couple of months and it's close to being my trad AOTY up to this point. Musically, it falls in the heavy/power spectrum somewhere in between Visigoth and Noble Beast. The vocals are vastly improved with the biting, gritty viking sound similar to Visigoth. Definitely recommend.
Who are you? The prince of darkness? Don't you have any friends?


Some pretty awesome shit. Has imagery and ambitious songwriting similar to Demon Bitch, but the overall quality is not quite there yet. Still should rock your socks off.
Who are you? The prince of darkness? Don't you have any friends?