Iron Pages                                German publishers of a legendary fanzine and some ESSENTIAL books. You really need The NWOBHM Encyclopedia by Malc Macmillan. I keep this book next to my bed, and have read from it most weeks since I got it 3 years ago. It is just so entertaining, painstakingly researched and playfully hilarious. It costs a whopping £30, but it is actually worth this price (although you can get it cheaper on Amazon). I’m sure I can’t be the only person in the world who is absolutely desperate for Lord Macmillan to make a new edition of his masterpiece; so much has changed since this was released in 2001. In that decade and a bit, a plethora of new recordings have come to light and there have been many unpredictable reformations… Please Malc, put us out of our misery and talk us through the peaks and troughs in your inimitable witty style. I’m begging you!

High Roller Records     The Germans really know how to do it properly. The shipping costs make the shop slightly pricey when buying from the UK, so when something new comes up my advice is to get it from Amazon. (Also try their ebay shop if what you’re looking for is too limited edition to come up on Amazon). I normally like to reduce my music collection’s carbon footprint (I’ve clearly been in Bristol too long) by getting everything on mp3, however, you don’t always get all the tracks if you do that on High Roller releases, so it’s best to get stuff on their beautifully packaged CDs and LPs.

Heavy Metal Rarities       A friendly (note: they get unfriendly if you if you don’t follow their rules to the word, yes my stats are in minus figures on this site; whoops) place where you can download discontinued and hard to find vinyl rips. They do a good job of rejecting any uploads that can be bought in the real world. Although sometimes you can get vinyl rips so you can try before you buy a genuine re-mastered edition.

John Tucker    A highly regarded rock photographer and writer of a number of good books about NWOBHM (Suzie Smiled is a great introduction to the era and more recently Neat and Tidy: the Story of Neat Records, which through some revealing interviews gives really powerful insights into the relationships between musicians and ‘the business’) John really has his finger on the pulse of our music, so give him a visit.   They may not pay their taxes, but this is where I go for NWOBHM mp3s, CDs and books. If something seems a bit pricey because it’s being shipped from the continent, just click on that little blue ‘New’ or ‘Used’ and get it for a sensible price.

The Metal Evolution series (with rock n roll anthropologist Sam Dunn) was pretty impressive. Buy the whole series here and marvel at the NWOBHM episode, which works really well as an introduction to the era, although in the 45 minutes there’s only really time to hear the ‘big name’ bands talking. However this should whet your appetite to hear more about the hundreds of gutter dwelling rock n roll masters who didn’t ‘break through’ while you’re developing your vast NWOBHM collection.

I’ve removed some links from this page after realising how many recent releases certain sites were giving away as downloads. As I said earlier, NWOBHM CDs and MP3s can be bought for pretty cheap, which is a good way to show the struggling reformed bands the respect they deserve and inspire them to keep making our music. Is it really worth messing up the careers of our heroes just to increase Google stats? I’d say get involved with Heavy Metal Rarities, and if you can’t find what you’re looking for there, track down your own copy. Discogs is a good place to buy stuff that you had no idea was still available. Just enjoy searching and when you get that CD through the post it’ll feel worth it!

Oh and one more thing, you may as well just delete your Spotify account, they have always been the worst place to properly collect (or even to hear) this kind of music. I’ll take this bombshell back if anyone can prove otherwise. In the mean time, widen the perimeters of music you can stumble upon by not allowing this company to filter your musical identity!