Viking Skull Heavy Metal Thunder

Isn't it amusing when a joke ends up outliving the real deal? Such is the case with British groove metal dudes Viking Skull, an act created as a means for metallers Raging Speedhorn to open for themselves on tour. Well, Speedhorn are gone and as Heavy Metal Thunder (a compilation of popular early efforts Born In Hell and Chapter One, along with five new songs) proves, the Skull scream on. While there is a sincere degree of amusement and laidback spirit to these AC/DC-inspired, bare-bones rock'n'roll tracks (as played by Clutch, Nashville Pussy and Sabbath fans), both of these albums sound somewhat juvenile and predictable in retrospect. Viking Skull may be a contender these days but as the re-released portion of this proves, they were actually rather rudimentary initially. Either way, as Heavy Metal Thunder proves, this running gag has become rather serious and will be playing out for a long time. (Restricted Release)