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General Metal Discussions » Bootlegging/Pirating Record Companies Whos Releases You Should Avoid
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    (For confirmed legit record labels re-releasing old albums see this topic. To find more info about any releases check this website, it may not be complete but gives direction! They usually list if it's a bootleg but mistakes happen)

    Unless you don't care that it's bootleg or pirate that is..
    The idea is to list here those "record companies" which are known to be non-legit (or partly non-legit) to help other collectors find out what to avoid when buying anything (at least for more than few dollars). Record companies that have bootleg releases in their catalogue but also licensed ones are marked in blue. If the source which claims about bootlegging or piraticy is known, it is mentioned in the list within "( )" marks. I don't take responsibility on the reliability of the source, if anyone knows there's been a mistake feel free to drop a message and correct. Remember that after all this is free online discussion which is not 100% reliable by itself. Bootlegs and pirates might be good quality but more often are not. They are also far less valuable than original pressings or legit re-releases.

    Feel free to leave a comment or two about any of these "record companies" if you know anything extra about them, what type of stuff they release and when did they release their stuff. Do they have any value anyway? Also if you have tips about how to recognize bootleg feel free to post.

    If you have anything to add to the list let us know! :) If you want company to be included in the list please provide some sort of a online source or own notification/example of album(s) that are bootlegs from that specific label - this provides some insight and reliability. Look for the replies further in this topic for more specific information about the boot-labels like lists of what specific albums certain label has released etc!

    *Gray zone: Unclear cases or companies releasing both legit and bootlegs marked in blue color - read more in replies below!

    Bootlegging companies -- added by (source of information):
    American Legend --Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Banzai Records (Canada) -- jamsonic1
    *note: most of releases legit, some unauthorized (source)

    Barricade Records -- jamsonic1
    *note: old bootlegger that rel. albums like Jag Panzer-Ample Destruction, E-X-E..
    Burrrn (Japan) -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Evil Eye (Mostly Cd-R Releases) -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Forgotten Gems (Australia) -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Forgotten Metal -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Hot Metal Records (Greece) -- gravedigger84+Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    *note: not to be confused with another Hot Metal Records who only released Megaton's "Aluminium Lady" 7" in 1981
    Inrock Records -- credits: Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Japan Rock Reissues (Japan) -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Krescendo Records -- jamsonic1
    Laserlight Digital -- Strappado
    *note: Their METALMANIA series consists of bootlegs, unsure of their other releases
    Locomotive Music / Locomotive Records (Spain) -- jamsonic1
    *note: Also seem to have released legit releases (Grave Digger etc.)

    Mosh It -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    New Wave Of Swedish Heavy Metal -- Strappado
    *note: Bootleg vinyl reissues of Swedish 7" (clear / coloured) (Gotham City, Heavy Load, Torsten, Shakespeare etc..)
    No Poser Records -- jamsonic1
    Noble Rot Records -- jamsonic1
    *note: also rel. legit ones like Cirith Ungol-Paradise Lost (source@ additional notes)

    Old Metal Records -- gravedigger84 (Metal-Treasures.com)
    *note: only FEW oldest releases are bootlegs according to King Fowley (owner) but be vary anyway
    Phoenix Records (Brazil) -- Strappado
    *note: not to be confused with UK label of same name who re-released Nightcomers/12" Smokin' valves
    *note2: mostly nwobhm 7" bootlegs on coloured vinyl ltd. to approx. 250 pressings ie. Virtue-We stand to fight ep
    Racer Records -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Reborn Classics -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Revenge Of True Metal Records -- demonhellrogues
    Rock-It (Mostly Cd-R Releases) -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Roxcalibur Distribution -- Strappado
    Rusty Cage Records -- jamsonic1
    *note: released legit and bootlets, see confirmed legit releases at here.

    Sg Records -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Shifty Records -- Heavy Thrashhead (source)
    Shock Rock Records -- Heavy Thrashhead
    Shock Wave Records (Mostly Cd-R Releases) -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Strike Force (Mostly Cd-R Releases) -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Tidal Wave (Mosly Cd-R Releases) -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Time Warp (Mostly Cd-R Releases) -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com / RYM)
    Toxic Records -- Strappado (Metal-Treasures.com)
    Unisound Records -- Demonhellrogues/Heavy Thrashhead (source @ additional notes)
    *note: most likely released legit and bootlegs, ie Flames cd's are bootlegs.

    Wounded Bird Records -- jamsonic1

    I hope you don't mind me keeping the list updated here Strappado whenever someone informs about new label. Also since you have permissions to modify this post, if you're quite certain about some record label being trash company releasing pirates feel free to add it yourself ;)
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    A topic needed for sure!, great idea.
    You may want to check out our friend METALHUNTERS list also, he's got tons of labels listed here
    http://www.metal-treasures.com/2011/04/bootlegs.html

    Some confirmed labels to add to the list (creds to Metal Treasures):
    HOT METAL
    REBORN CLASSICS
    TOXIC RECORDS
    SG RECORDS
    MOSH IT
    AMERICAN LEGEND
    RACER RECORDS
    FORGOTTEN METAL
    EVIL EYE (mostly CD-R releases)
    SHOCK WAVE RECORDS (mostly CD-R releases)
    ROCK-IT (mostly CD-R releases)
    STRIKE FORCE (mostly CD-R releases)
    TIDAL WAVE (mosly CD-R releases)
    TIME WARP (mostly CD-R releases)
    INROCK RECORDS
    FORGOTTEN GEMS (Australian Boot-Label)
    BURRRN (Japanese Boot-Label)
    JAPAN ROCK REISSUES (Japanese Boot-Label)

    + some I am aware of

    ROXCALIBUR DISTRIBUTION (Released split boots of all Heavy Load releases)
    PHOENIX RECORDS (Bootleg Vinyl reissues of NWOBHM singles etc, numbered limited pressings on coloured vinyl)
    NEW WAVE OF SWEDISH HEAVY METAL (Bootleg Vinyl reissues of Swedish 7" (clear / coloured) - Gotham City, Heavy Load, Torsten, Shakespeare etc)

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    Moved here from original post to clear it up:

    I'll go ahead and start.

    Hot Metal Records released albums are stated by various online sources to be bootlegs with fake info in the cover. If I recall right they released their bootlegs around 2005 to 2006. Rarer 80's stuff like Emerald Steel s/t, Spartan Warrior s/t and Salem's Wych Betrayer of Kings.. I'm sure there's much more to it if you search.
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    Phoenix Records rings a bell.. then I remembered I saw Virtue's We Stand To Fight on Ebay recently re-release:
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/VIRTUE-WE-STAND ... 1098wt_932
    Quite expensive. You can clearly see Phoenix Records in the label there.. so it's a boot then I suppose. It looks good tho :D
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    Yep all their releases are boots! first encountered this label when I ordered a 7" from a hrm well known online store beginning with "S".
    They sure looks nice and you often see them selling for over 100$, fucking crazy I have to say.

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    Well Here is a Bootleg Record Company, Don't Realy Know if Their a Newer Company at all But Their Called Shock Rock Records They Rereleased Pantera's 2nd & 4th Records on CD But They Don't Realy Give Out a Specific Rerelease Date Only the The Original Release Date on Both Releases Plus There is No Matrix Number at all
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    Geat and very helpfull topic, hope to see more posts. First of all these hot metal cd's are all bootlegs, released earlier than 2006 though.
    These were given for free at the ''Heavy Metal Collctors'', ''True Metal'' etc magazines here in Greece around 2002 - 2003 and continued until 2006 or further without magazines (just a page with rare records on the layout and a cd for 5 or 10 euro and ONLY at press stores and mini markets, not record stores[well, you could see the cds alone at a few second hand record stores!!!]).
    The same guys were also behind ''Revenge Of True Metal'' records that pressed the ''FORGOTTEN METAL - OUTSTANDING METAL GEMS'' serries that contained 3 ultra rare albums / eps at one cd (dozens of ultra rare records), you can see all of those here:

    http://axxmachine666.wetpaint.com/page/ ... TOR+SERIES

    Here are some pictures of the lay out of these bootlegs:
    http://i.imgur.com/1M3e0.jpg http://i.imgur.com/FBevN.jpg http://i.imgur.com/Uqz89.jpg
    Whenever you see layouts like this (with that slip case/silver border etc...) beware...

    The same guys should laso be behind more of the above mentioned bootleg labels (reborn classics, forgotten gems, forgotten metal, they also released stuff with Old Metal label and a few bootlegs with the unisound labels's logo. I've also seen dozens of cd's that were actually originally pressed by major labels released fro those same guys if i'm not mistaken with the same layout - booklet etc as the original cds but usually different or no matrix numbers and shity quality that usually will skip and / or don't play at all etc, some cd's i know that are bootleged this way are:Heretic, Defiance, Mortal Sin, Sacred Warrior, Blind Illusion and more).

    As for No Remorse Records, he may have bootlegs for sale some times but as far as i know his releases are all legit, i'm not completely sure but i have not seen something suspicious at Cult Metal Classics or No Remorse Records releases, most of them have printed lyrics and info, liner notes from band members, bonus unreleased tracks etc...

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    Considering Old Metal Records here's a reply I found at Metalireland forums (source) considering the label and bootlegs:

    "anonymous member of forum:

    Old metal records is King Fowley's label and released some cool stuff like the RAT ATTACK demo on cd but mostly bootlegs.

    King Fowley (record label owner?):

    cheers!

    wanted to clear up a few things!
    very few old metal releases are 'bootlegs'.
    early on we sometimes put stuff out without finding band members and only wanted stuff to get out to the masses. but through 51 releases only about 6 are boots in the end! we got over that silliness and got serious!

    the rat attack is official as is the fingernails, deathmask, satans host etc etc
    you guys mentioned!

    anyone wants to chat on old metal etc please email me at kingdoomstone@yahoo.com

    wishing everyone well!

    king fowley "


    From Metal-Treasures.com (source) we can find listing of official releases by Old Metal Records (which can be dated for now). Credits for compiling the list are titled to "Ivica F."

    DEATH MASK - Exhumation
    DECEASED - Fearless Undead Machines 2CD
    DECEASED - Surreal Overdose
    FINGERNAILS - Destroy Western World
    HAMMER - Contract With Hell + 1 bonus track-Reissue of NWOBHM classic with lots of photos, lyrics, more. (Ebony/Old Metal)
    HEAVEN - Bent + 10 bonus tracks (Twilight of Mischief 1981 demo)-(Heaven/Old Metal)
    HEAVEN - Knockin' on Heavens Door + 6 bonus tracks ('88 demo)
    HEAVEN Where Angels Fear To Tread + 7 bonus tracks
    KNIGHTMARE II - Skeletal Remains (Evil Coven/Old Metal)
    PROUD - Fire Breaks the Dawn (2nd pressing with corrected disc)-There is first pressing with the defective discs (Old Metal???)-(Proud/Old Metal)
    TYRANT - Legions of the Dead (Tyrant/Old Metal)-2010 reissue, the 1st reissue in 2000 is bootleg (they agree legal contract for 2010 reissue)
    TYRANT - Too Late To Pray + 2 bonus tracks (Tyrant/Old Metal)-2010 reissue, the 1st reissue in 2000 is bootleg (they agree legal contract for 2010 reissue)
    TYRANT - King of Kings + 5 bonus tracks (Tyrant/Old Metal)-2010 reissue, the 1st reissue in 2000 is bootleg (they agree legal contract for 2010 reissue)
    UNDERDOG - Rabies In Town (Band approved reissue of 1984 German metal semi-classic originally on the Mausoleum label. (Underdog/Old Metal)
    VERMEFUG - Wet Nightmare-2009 Old Metal

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    demonhellrogues wrote:Geat and very helpfull topic, hope to see more posts. First of all these hot metal cd's are all bootlegs, released earlier than 2006 though.
    These were given for free at the ''Heavy Metal Collctors'', ''True Metal'' etc magazines here in Greece around 2002 - 2003 and continued until 2006 or further without magazines (just a page with rare records on the layout and a cd for 5 or 10 euro and ONLY at press stores and mini markets, not record stores[well, you could see the cds alone at a few second hand record stores!!!]).
    The same guys were also behind ''Revenge Of True Metal'' records that pressed the ''FORGOTTEN METAL - OUTSTANDING METAL GEMS'' serries that contained 3 ultra rare albums / eps at one cd (dozens of ultra rare records), you can see all of those here:

    http://axxmachine666.wetpaint.com/page/ ... TOR+SERIES

    Here are some pictures of the lay out of these bootlegs:
    http://i.imgur.com/1M3e0.jpg http://i.imgur.com/FBevN.jpg http://i.imgur.com/Uqz89.jpg
    Whenever you see layouts like this (with that slip case/silver border etc...) beware...

    The same guys should laso be behind more of the above mentioned bootleg labels (reborn classics, forgotten gems, forgotten metal, they also released stuff with Old Metal label and a few bootlegs with the unisound labels's logo. I've also seen dozens of cd's that were actually originally pressed by major labels released fro those same guys if i'm not mistaken with the same layout - booklet etc as the original cds but usually different or no matrix numbers and shity quality that usually will skip and / or don't play at all etc, some cd's i know that are bootleged this way are:Heretic, Defiance, Mortal Sin, Sacred Warrior, Blind Illusion and more).

    As for No Remorse Records, he may have bootlegs for sale some times but as far as i know his releases are all legit, i'm not completely sure but i have not seen something suspicious at Cult Metal Classics or No Remorse Records releases, most of them have printed lyrics and info, liner notes from band members, bonus unreleased tracks etc...


    Much info in this post, thanks!
    Funny to see Gotham Citys 'Black Writs' back sleeve used there.. never noticed before.
    Speaking about GOTHAM CITY.. Metal Crusade Records put out a boot CD called 'The Legend of Gotham City' in 2005.
    Doe's anyone have any more info on this label? Their remaining catalouge seems legit...
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    gravedigger84 wrote:I hope you don't mind me keeping the list updated here Strappado whenever someone informs about new label.


    Go ahead :) you're the boss of the topic!

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    Does anyone happen to know about following cd? According to metal-archives.com Neat Records has indeed owned rights to Blitzkrieg. It just confuses me that in this particular Blitzkrieg cd (see photos) back-cover says "Neat Metal" but the cd says "Neat Records" ?

    Neat Metal's info says 71 High Street East, Wallsend, Tyne and Wear NE28 7RJ in the booklet but on the side of that it says made in France?

    Why to use both Neat Metal and Neat Records names? For a while I thought this might be a boot cd but now I think maybe not. It has lyrics written in booklet and record company's address there. Few pics:

    http://i.imgur.com/EvXfl.jpg

    http://i.imgur.com/uDr7B.jpg

    http://i.imgur.com/Jlxno.jpg

    Legit or not? Been bugging me :P
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    Strappado wrote:
    gravedigger84 wrote:I hope you don't mind me keeping the list updated here Strappado whenever someone informs about new label.


    Go ahead :) you're the boss of the topic!


    No worries I though it'd be nice to give a credit in the list for the person who suggested each record company.
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    gravedigger84 wrote:Does anyone happen to know about following cd? According to metal-archives.com Neat Records has indeed owned rights to Blitzkrieg. It just confuses me that in this particular Blitzkrieg cd (see photos) back-cover says "Neat Metal" but the cd says "Neat Records" ?

    Neat Metal's info says 71 High Street East, Wallsend, Tyne and Wear NE28 7RJ in the booklet but on the side of that it says made in France?

    Why to use both Neat Metal and Neat Records names? For a while I thought this might be a boot cd but now I think maybe not. It has lyrics written in booklet and record company's address there. Few pics:

    http://i.imgur.com/EvXfl.jpg

    http://i.imgur.com/uDr7B.jpg

    http://i.imgur.com/Jlxno.jpg

    Legit or not? Been bugging me :P


    This Seems Way too Fishy, Couse i Own a Neat Metal Records Pressing (Savage's Loose `N Lethal) and It Doese'nt Realy Look Like This Plus What Year Was This Actauly Released Couse Neat Metal Records Has Been Down for a Long Time Now Since The 1997 Reisues Has Been Released and Mine Does'nt Say Made in France
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    Heavy Thrashhead wrote:
    This Seems Way too Fishy, Couse i Own a Neat Metal Records Pressing (Savage's Loose `N Lethal) and It Doese'nt Realy Look Like This Plus What Year Was This Actauly Released Couse Neat Metal Records Has Been Down for a Long Time Now Since The 1997 Reisues Has Been Released and Mine Does'nt Say Made in France


    Unholy Trinity was released in 1995. Actually metal-archives.com claims that all their records up to The Mists of Avalon (1998) would be by Neat Records. Made in France confuses me though.

    See their list according to metal-archives.com here.
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    Could it be that Neat Metal is written on specific series of Neat's releleases? As for France this specific copy is probably the French edition (Neat is a major label that should have a wide distribution). After all Jess Cox (Tygers Of Pan Tang) owns Neat Records now, he was there from the beginning, knows those bands personally, i can't think why those releases would be bootlegs...
    If someone has more info please let us know...

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    Neat Records was active up to 1995 and later sold by Jess Cox to Sanctuary Records who lasted 'til 2007.
    I'm 99.9999999% sure it's legit."Made In France" may just be where it was pressed or distributed. :)

    I think Sanctuary Records used Neat as a sublabel and kept pushing out releases under the Neat Metal moniker.

    Edit: Confirmed here http://www.discogs.com/label/Neat+Records
    In 1995 it's new owners, Sanctuary Records, began reissuing it's back catalog on CD under the moniker Neat Metal.

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    Strappado wrote:Neat Records was active up to 1995 and later sold by Jess Cox to Sanctuary Records who lasted 'til 2007.
    I'm 99.9999999% sure it's legit."Made In France" may just be where it was pressed or distributed. :)

    I think Sanctuary Records used Neat as a sublabel and kept pushing out releases under the Neat Metal moniker.

    Edit: Confirmed here http://www.discogs.com/label/Neat+Records

    British record label. Now inactive, Neat is best known for its role in releasing NWOBHM (New Wave Of British Heavy Metal) classics. Established in 1979 by David Wood and based in Newcastle, England, the label was sold sixteen years later to Sanctuary Records by its then owner Jess Cox.

    In 1995 it's new owners, Sanctuary Records, began reissuing it's back catalog on CD under the moniker Neat Metal.

    Thanks Strapp, that solves it i believe...
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    Another label that should be added to the list is LASERLIGHT DIGITAL, they have put out weird reissues of albums such as HEAVY LOAD - Death or Glory with changed artwork, album title and remixed tracks. I'm pretty sure their completly METALMANIA serie consists of bootlegs. AVOID!

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    Strappado wrote:Another label that should be added to the list is LASERLIGHT DIGITAL, they have put out weird reissues of albums such as HEAVY LOAD - Death or Glory with changed artwork, album title and remixed tracks. I'm pretty sure their completly METALMANIA serie consists of bootlegs. AVOID!


    I remember that logo.. I'm pretty sure that I've got one or two their releases but cannot remember at all which they were.. I probably have quite a few bootlegs in my collection as they're very common within cd releases. I've bought most of them from legit stores too.

    As for anonymous record label beginning with 'N' it has been removed for now for me and Strappado being threathened by a lawsuit. However there seems to be some discussion in the air also elsewhere that this label would be legit, but would also be selling bootlegs similarly in their store (the very same page than their record labels) which has upset some collectors. I'm going to leave the link off for now tho, PM me if you're interested in reading it and I'll give it to you and you can make up your mind about that matter yourself. :)

    Also it might be true what the label stated that their label releases are not bootlegs which is "not to be confused with their store", which by the above mentioned discussion as well as Metal-Treasures.com is mentioned to be selling bootlegs (not their own label's releases).

    But their label website and store website address is different by just small margin. They are directly cross-linked with a banner. Their store website also has their label logo in the same page. If this store sells bootlegs as claimed elsewhere.. with their very own label logo on it.. and without more detailed info about the cd releaser (whereas one cannot know if it's their own release, other label's release, or bootleg release).. can they really deny the whole label-store-bootleg-axis connection and deny responsivility while adversiting these producs under their label's banner? Decide yourselves.

    It's basically like saying: "This is our record labels online record store, it has our label's logo in it which we advertise with, and we may sell bootlegs over there, but it has nothing to do with our label". err.
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    Anyone got any thoughts on Krescendo Records? Have heard there's been some issues about their legitimacy. I've bought a few of their CD releases recently and have been disappointed with the sound quality, such as Sword's 'Metalized' and 'Law of Devil's Land' by Loudness. Their A II Z Witch of Berkeley 2 disc release was the worst of the lot though. I'm pretty sure the 1st disc is actually the same release as the Reborn Classics bootleg from the early 90's (same bonus tracks and running order), but the version I got was full of 'clicks' as if the source tape was damaged, although I don't know if it was just the copy I got or if all copies were like that.
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