Thursday, 9 June 2016

THE BATTLE YEARS


Band: URUK HAI
Title: The Battle Years
Format: Bespoke 2-disc set put together by Hugin for a lucky fan.  Contains a music CD (tracks in MP3 format) with a compendium of past albums, together with a video CD with promotional Uruk Hai video clips.  Both discs housed in black wallets with custom colour artwork, in a transparent and stickered sleeve.  The music disc also contains an image of each album or demo cover. There is a separate black envelope which contains a hand-written card stating the limitation of the item. The package also contains a number of freebies, including Uruk Hai stickers, a business card and a guitar pick.  No catalogue references, released circa 2012.
Edition: 1 single copy

Contents:
Music CD
Note: the listing for the audio CD lists the albums and demos therein, not individual song titles.  It also shows the year and format of release from where the music is taken (MC = tape, DoMC = double tape, CD, CDr, MCD = mini-CD, and Vinyl)
01. 1000 Lightning Strikes (CDr and MC, 2003)
02. A Night In The Forest (CD, 2004)
03. Across The Misty Mountains (CD, 2007)
04. Ash Nazg (MC, 2010)
05. Barbarians (CD, 2003)
06. Black Blood, White Hand (CD, 2010)
07. Blutreich (CDr and MC, 2006)
08. Cirith Ungol (CD, 2011)
09. Cirith Ungol rough mix (MC, 2010)
10. Darkness Part III (MC, 2010)
11. Dragons Of War (CD, 2005)
12. Elbentanz (CDr, 2002)
13. Elbentraum (MC, 2009)
14. Elves And Men (MCD, 2011)
15. Emyn Muil (CD, 2011)
16. Felagund (MC, 2011)
17. Gil-galad (DoMCD, 2011)
18. In Durin's Halls (CD, 2010)
19. Iron Age (LP, 2010)
20. Lebensende: Winter (MC, 2009)
21. Lord Of The Rings (MC, 2010)
22. Lost Songs From Middle Earth (CD, 2007)
23. Lothlorien (CD, 2006)
24. Middle Earth, Part I (MC, 2010)
25. Middle Earth, Part II (MC, 2010)
26. Nargothrond (DoMCD, 2011)
27. Natt Skogen Jubileum (MC, 2011)
28. Northern Lights (CD, 2005)
29. Orkstahl (DoCDr, 2009)
30. Quenta Silmarillion (CDr, 2004)
31. Quenta Silmarillion re-mastered (MC, 2009)
32. Songs From The Woods re-release (MC, 2011)
33. Spirits (From Ancient Worlds) (MC, 2011)
34. Spirits (From The Past) (MC, 2011)
35. The Barbarian (MC, 2010)
36. The Battle (CD, 2005)
37. The Nazgul (MC, 2010)
38. Upon The Elysian Fields (DoCDR, 2009)
39. War Poems (CD, 2006)
40. Wrath Of The Ring (MC, 2010)

Video CD
V1. Untitled
V2. Lebensende:Winter
V3. Ravens Empire
V4. Tales From The Misty Mountains
V5. Enter Mordor
V6. Cirith Ungol
V7. Conan The Barbarian
V8. 2012 promo clip for what became the "And All The Magic And Might He Brought" album

I told you in the last post that you'd like this latest one - tell me I'm wrong?!

Rumours abounded years ago of an Uruk Hai 40CD compilation that would be housed in a warrior's armoured helmet.  Whilst rumours continue that such a physical item may indeed exist (possibly with a former Bonemachine member, I seem to recall) it certainly never made it to commercial release nor does Nazgul have a copy.

What Nazgul does have though, is this astounding collection of 40 albums and demos, plus a further 8 promotional videos, put together by Hugin for one very lucky fan ... who in time sold it to another even luckier fan: yours truly!

It really is a remarkable collection of exclusively Uruk Hai releases from the 2002-2011 period, though is not a complete body of work as you will have noted as it doesn't include, for instance, the full complement of parts for either of the "Middle Earth" or "Darkness" tape series.  Quite frankly though you'd be nit-picking if you really wanted any more, and I suspect it was more a factor of available disc space than a lack of effort that led to the final running order detailed above.

For those interested, this equates to 181 individual Uruk Hai songs on one disc, in compressed format obviously!

It really is a wondrous thing, and a look into the dates on the discs identifies that the music was all compiled on 13 July 2011 whilst the video disc was put together a little later, on 13 January 2012, hence the presumed 2012 issue date.  You might be wondering quite why the original owner decided to let such a magnificent item go after the care and love that Hugin had put into crafting all the artwork, even down to the hand-decorated audio disc, and it's a baffling question isn't it.  

Would you have sold it?  Not me, that's for certain!


Anyhow, it's a real boon to the Castle collection and as it's been a bit of a lean period in getting regular posts up on Honour and Darkness I thought you'd enjoy seeing it.

The videos are very interesting, and at least two of them - 'Conan The Barbarian' and the 2012 promo clip I think were new even to Nazgul when I first viewed them, and I've seen an awful lot of output from W.A.R. Productions over the years.

Will we ever see its like again ... well, I'd put nothing past a man who has been known to decorate CD covers with bits of broken records and tape cases with computer motherboards, but don't hold your breath as I imagine the time and effort involved must be considerable.  But it's nice to imagine that lurking as yet unseen in the world at large could be other treasures still to be discovered....

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