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Derigin
The Mountain Man

Joined: Sun Jan 01, 2006 6:25 am
Posts: 5859
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 2:46 pm 
 

Welcome to the 7th Diamhea Memorial Review Challenge!

Originally the "MA Virgin Reviews Challenge," this is a time-honored tradition among our reviewers here. Every spring and every autumn, reviewers are encouraged to spend a week writing and submitting as many quality reviews as possible, with the aim to focus on albums with no reviews so far (i.e. virgin albums). Every day, the reviews submitted and accepted are tallied, so that participants can see how they compare with one another and whether or not, altogether, we've been able to surpass previous challenges' totals. Previous challenges can be found here.

The challenge is named in memory of our friend Diamhea, a long-time contributor to this challenge and staff member here at Metal Archives, who sadly passed away on May 21, 2018. He was the first person to have ever written 100 reviews for a single challenge!

This challenge will run from Monday Jun 14 @ 12:00AM EST to Sunday Jun 20 @ 11:59PM EST.

The magic number to beat is 609. That was set in May 2009. It's high but we can beat it.
The second magic number to beat is 322. That was the total from the last challenge!

Challenge Rules

1. The focus is on virgin albums.
The only albums that count are those that had zero reviews prior to the challenge.

2. Every release listed on the main site is valid including singles, videos, boxed sets and so on.
However, please try to refrain from mass reviewing singles and 'best of' compilations for this challenge. That's lame.

3. Eligible releases have to be virgins at the beginning of the challenge.
Multiple people can review the same virgin. There’s no bonus for getting to it first, so no need to hurry – focus on quality instead.

4. Eligible reviews must have been written during the challenge.
Pre-listening to albums and taking notes is, of course, fine, but avoid stockpiling already written reviews in advance.

5. Value quality over quantity!
Everyone is welcome to participate, but keep in mind that the mods won't be more lenient during the challenge.

6. The challenge abides by the default time of the site (Eastern Standard time or GMT-5).
Please ensure that you are posting your review(s) within the right time frame in order for them to count.

7. The total number of reviews written will be tallied once a day (under normal circumstances).
Derigin (myself) will kindly do the tallying as soon as possible. Please don't nag him (me).

8. Stay cordial and respectful with one another.
Don't hijack this thread with petty arguments or whining. Remember that the mods are watching (and waiting)...

9. The only reward is our eternal appreciation.
The only prize is knowing that there is an album that previously didn't get any love... that now has a review to call its own.

Hall of Fame

Spoiler: show
General Challenge

May 2006: 56 reviews
November 2006: 110 reviews
February 2007: 231 reviews
July 2007: 239 reviews
December 2007: 274 reviews
May 2008: 322 reviews
November 2008: 360 reviews
May 2009: 609 reviews
November 2009: 489 reviews
June 2010: 605 reviews
December 2010: 274 reviews
October 2012: 114 reviews
June 2013 (low-key): 338 reviews
December 2014: 384 reviews
June 2015: 230 reviews
December 2015: 462 reviews
June 2016: 347 reviews
December 2016: 486 reviews
June 2017: 483 reviews
December 2017: 353 reviews
June 2018: 368 reviews
December 2018: 398 reviews
May 2019: 332 reviews
December 2019: 581 reviews
June 2020: 428 reviews
December 2020: 322 reviews
June 2021: 430 reviews

Individual Challenge

May 2006: Drowned (10), Byrgan and Gutterscream (5), Sean16 and Velkaarn (3)
November 2006: Corimngul (9), Cianan (8), Peregrin (7)
February 2007: hells_unicorn (65), erickg13 (17), Sokaris (15)
July 2007: hells_unicorn (38), oneyoudontknow (17), CannibalCorpse (16)
December 2007: hells_unicorn (56), Mors_Gloria (15), Mungo (9)
May 2008: Noktorn (55), hells_unicorn (52), lord_ghengis (12)
November 2008: hells_unicorn (57), Perplexed_Sjel (42), caspian (41)
May 2009: hells_unicorn (93), DeathRiderDoom (89), OzzyApu (84)
November 2009: Perplexed_Sjel (95), iamntbatman (46), sushiman (36)
June 2010: OzzyApu (97), Perplexed_Sjel (91)
December 2010: hells_unicorn (85), OzzyApu (38), Noktorn (24)
October 2012: androdion, Thumbman, and TheStormIRide (8), Noctir (7), Jophelerx (6)
June 2013 (low-key): Thumbman (51), iamntbatman (50), MutantClannfear (47)
December 2014: Diamhea (57), iamntbatman (53), hells_unicorn (23)
June 2015: hells_unicorn (30), Zodijackyl (28), iamntbatman (27)
December 2015: Diamhea (65), TheStormIRide (44), hells_unicorm (27)
June 2016: stainedclass2112 (45), kluseba (41), hells_unicorn (29)
December 2016: Diamhea (100), Crossover (58), Thumbman (34)
June 2017: Zodijackyl (53), gasmask_colostomy and hells_unicorn (50), kluseba (38)
December 2017: Thumbman (56), gasmask_colostomy (51), hells_unicorn (35)
June 2018: gasmask_colostomy (67), hells_unicorn and kluseba (30), GOOFAM (22)
December 2018: gasmask_colostomy (58), Thumbman (46), hells_unicorn (45)
May 2019: gasmask_colostomy (68), GuntherTheUndying (48), hells_unicorn (35)
December 2019: Thumbman (111), gasmask_colostomy (103), RapeTheDead (69)
June 2020: gasmask_colostomy (50), Twisted_Psychology (34), hells_unicorn (25)
December 2020: gasmask_colostomy (50), hells_unicorn (30), orphy (25)
June 2021: gasmask_colostomy (62), Thumbman (47), hells_unicorn (43)


The Metal Archives Review Pool

Not sure what to write a review for, or want a change of pace outside of your comfort zone? The Review Pool may be the answer!

The Review Pool is a list of virgin albums submitted by other reviewers for anyone to review during the challenge. Anyone who has at least 5 reviews on MA can submit a virgin album to be included in the pool (just send me a PM with the album name) and I'll include it in the list below. Keep in mind, if it's no longer a virgin before the challenge begins, I will have to remove it. Reviewers interested in using the Review Pool can review any of the albums in the list during the challenge, even if someone else has reviewed it before them. There's no limit.

You can choose your own band, but be aware that reviews may be quite critical and we won't tolerate people whining/begging about scores.

The Review Pool List:



Have fun! Looking forward to your participation!
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hells_unicorn
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Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2005 8:32 pm
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PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 3:55 pm 
 

Already building my list of virgins, barring some unforeseen scheduling fiascos, I should be firing on all cylinders for this challenge. I've yet to break into triple digits and I'd also finally like to see us crack that collective 609 score that has remained untouched for 12 years.
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MDL
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Sep 11, 2014 2:12 pm
Posts: 503
PostPosted: Fri May 14, 2021 4:05 pm 
 

I'd like to participate as well, now that I've been active on MA once again.

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Demon Fang
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Mar 12, 2019 9:42 am
Posts: 186
PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 2:05 am 
 

Would be a hell of a thing to hit the triple digits this time! I've got something of a hit list together, which should keep me on track.

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Slater922
Metalhead

Joined: Tue Apr 14, 2020 6:24 pm
Posts: 823
PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 8:10 am 
 

Demon Fang wrote:
Would be a hell of a thing to hit the triple digits this time! I've got something of a hit list together, which should keep me on track.

Same here. I got a couple of virgin albums on my hit list too.
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caspian
Old Man Yells at Car Park

Joined: Tue Dec 07, 2004 11:29 pm
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 8:44 am 
 

i'll endeavour to shit out a few nadja reviews, I probably need to catch up on em.
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Lord_Of_Diamonds
Metalhead

Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2018 5:23 pm
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Location: Asheville area, NC, US
PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 2:04 pm 
 

I might write a few here and there, but they probably won't be virgin reviews. I'll probably finish up some ones I've been sitting on for a long time.
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hells_unicorn
Veteran

Joined: Tue Feb 15, 2005 8:32 pm
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Location: United States
PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 3:37 pm 
 

Slater922 wrote:
Demon Fang wrote:
Would be a hell of a thing to hit the triple digits this time! I've got something of a hit list together, which should keep me on track.

Same here. I got a couple of virgin albums on my hit list too.


If 3 or more of us each break 100 reviews individually, that might be enough to crack that magic 609 collective score. We came close back in 2019 but apart from the 4 top contestants, the rest of the field was mostly under 20 reviews each. It would be nice to see a larger number of moderately prolific reviewers to go along with the heavy hitters to make things more interesting.
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Death By Wall of Text
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2021 9:18 pm
Posts: 202
PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2021 9:48 pm 
 

I'll try to write a bunch, I've definitely seen a few I'd like to review that are still surprisingly untouched.

(And maybe that's also a good excuse for me to break out of my bubble and check out some obscure prog/post-metal stuff)

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gasmask_colostomy
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PostPosted: Sun May 16, 2021 7:26 am 
 

I shall definitely participate and will have a bit of free time too, so hopefully we're looking at a decent total. I'm not sure we need every guy going for 100 and getting an aneurysm, but anyone writing over 50 will be making a serious contribution and is in with a shout.
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Sean16
Moody Tabulator of Torn Hymens

Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 11:03 am
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Location: France
PostPosted: Sun May 16, 2021 11:49 am 
 

New job, new baby, and little time to write alas. Still I'll send my usual couple for sure :)
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hells_unicorn
Veteran

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PostPosted: Sun May 16, 2021 1:07 pm 
 

gasmask_colostomy wrote:
I shall definitely participate and will have a bit of free time too, so hopefully we're looking at a decent total. I'm not sure we need every guy going for 100 and getting an aneurysm, but anyone writing over 50 will be making a serious contribution and is in with a shout.


Honestly I think we have a better shot of breaking the 609 record if we have 8 or 9 people writing 40-50 reviews as opposed to 3 writing 100. I'd like to join the triple digit club at some point, but I'm more interested in setting a new collective record.
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orphy
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu May 06, 2004 11:24 pm
Posts: 217
Location: Edmonton, Canada
PostPosted: Sun May 16, 2021 1:29 pm 
 

Sean16 wrote:
New job, new baby, and little time to write alas. Still I'll send my usual couple for sure :)

I feel ya dude, I was unemployed during the last one so I had time. I'm back to work, and my partner and I are in the process of moving into a house we bought. Alas, I'll try to write if I can. I'm sure I can find some albums by friends who could use a review, I always find those ones are pretty easy to knock out.
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gasmask_colostomy
Metalhead

Joined: Thu May 27, 2010 5:38 am
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Location: Behind the wall of fire v.2
PostPosted: Sun May 16, 2021 7:25 pm 
 

hells_unicorn wrote:
gasmask_colostomy wrote:
I shall definitely participate and will have a bit of free time too, so hopefully we're looking at a decent total. I'm not sure we need every guy going for 100 and getting an aneurysm, but anyone writing over 50 will be making a serious contribution and is in with a shout.


Honestly I think we have a better shot of breaking the 609 record if we have 8 or 9 people writing 40-50 reviews as opposed to 3 writing 100. I'd like to join the triple digit club at some point, but I'm more interested in setting a new collective record.

My thoughts too. I also feel that if some people are close in numbers, it will make the whole thing more competitive. Several good starters would do wonders for that.
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MRmehman
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2015 1:34 pm
Posts: 560
Location: Painted World of Ariamis
PostPosted: Sun May 16, 2021 8:09 pm 
 

Oh shit! I just checked the Free-for-all and found your response to my question, Derigin. Cool to have a date for it now. I doubt I'll do as many reviews as last year because I'm still busy as fuck but who knows. If I get a free day and feel particularly inspired, I'll review all the bands I meant to do 6 months ago! Not sure if the new GCE has been reviewed yet but I'll be sure to get on that if not.

Its been a while since I submitted anything (other than that Ghost review I did a couple weeks ago) but I feel better about condensing my information. Hopefully my stuff will be of a higher quality than last time!
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Twisted_Psychology
Metal freak

Joined: Sat May 16, 2009 8:22 pm
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PostPosted: Wed May 19, 2021 4:31 pm 
 

That time already, eh? Sounds like I'd better start formulating my strategy for this run. Don't think I'll do the Secret Satan though.
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oneyoudontknow
Cum insantientibus furere necesse est.

Joined: Sun May 21, 2006 6:25 pm
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PostPosted: Thu May 20, 2021 12:20 pm 
 

Sounds good. Looking forward to add some as well.
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OzzyApu
Metal freak

Joined: Fri Oct 13, 2006 12:11 am
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Location: Seattle
PostPosted: Sat May 22, 2021 3:01 pm 
 

I think I can contribute at least one. First time in almost a decade that I've taken part in one of these.
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TheBurningOfSodom
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Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:28 am
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PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2021 9:09 am 
 

Got quite a lot of virgins in the draft status, hope I'll have enough time to cover at least some of them.

EDIT: On the draft topic, some of them are there since a whole lot of time, but most are empty or with scarce sentences or rough paragraphs in it, although I plan to start working on them before the challenge starts. Does that contradict rule 4? Seems quite self-explanatory but I thought it was worth asking.
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gasmask_colostomy
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PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2021 9:48 am 
 

TheBurningOfSodom wrote:
Got quite a lot of virgins in the draft status, hope I'll have enough time to cover at least some of them.

EDIT: On the draft topic, some of them are there since a whole lot of time, but most are empty or with scarce sentences or rough paragraphs in it, although I plan to start working on them before the challenge starts. Does that contradict rule 4? Seems quite self-explanatory but I thought it was worth asking.

I doubt anyone would get mad if you were submitting them, unless you had tons and tons of reviews that you had deliberately finished in advance and waited until the challenge to post. Also, depends how many you're going to write!


Notice that not many people have put albums in the Pool Party yet. The sooner the better, so others have time to listen in advance.
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MRmehman
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2015 1:34 pm
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Location: Painted World of Ariamis
PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2021 10:56 am 
 

OzzyApu wrote:
I think I can contribute at least one. First time in almost a decade that I've taken part in one of these.

Nice one! Welcome back!
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TheBurningOfSodom
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:28 am
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PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2021 1:51 pm 
 

gasmask_colostomy wrote:
tons and tons of reviews

I'm pretty sure I'll escape that :lol: thought the same though, thanks and good luck to everyone participating :hyper:
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Sweetie
Metalhead

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PostPosted: Mon May 24, 2021 3:16 pm 
 

I have a sizeable stack of cassettes that don't have any reviews, perhaps I'll hit some of those then.
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Thumbman
The Shellfish

Joined: Mon Nov 16, 2009 6:47 pm
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PostPosted: Wed May 26, 2021 1:47 pm 
 

gasmask_colostomy wrote:
TheBurningOfSodom wrote:
Got quite a lot of virgins in the draft status, hope I'll have enough time to cover at least some of them.

EDIT: On the draft topic, some of them are there since a whole lot of time, but most are empty or with scarce sentences or rough paragraphs in it, although I plan to start working on them before the challenge starts. Does that contradict rule 4? Seems quite self-explanatory but I thought it was worth asking.

I doubt anyone would get mad if you were submitting them, unless you had tons and tons of reviews that you had deliberately finished in advance and waited until the challenge to post. Also, depends how many you're going to write!


Notice that not many people have put albums in the Pool Party yet. The sooner the better, so others have time to listen in advance.


Pretty sure submitting reviews you have already started before the challenge is frowned upon.
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TheBurningOfSodom
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:28 am
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PostPosted: Wed May 26, 2021 6:14 pm 
 

Rule 4 is explicitly against 'already written' reviews, to be totally fair, but yeah, can see why starting a review before the official start might be seen as unfavorable. I asked, but I'm pretty sure my contribution to the challenge will be too small to actually raise some sort of polemic about whether I wrote them before or during the challenge.

Still, rules are rules, and since in the meantime I let myself go and almost finished one, I'll make sure to submit it well before the challenge begins, as to avoid any ethical dispute (mainly with myself) :-P
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gasmask_colostomy
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 03, 2021 12:54 am 
 

So far I've got 44 albums that I'm ready to review i.e. pre-listened and made a few notes. Not exactly sure how that week will turn out timewise because there's a holiday I overlooked on the first day, and I'm organizing a party for the following weekend. Anyway, will anyone else add albums to the Review Pool? It would be fun to see what everyone is listening to and thinking about.
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oneyoudontknow
Cum insantientibus furere necesse est.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 03, 2021 4:52 pm 
 

No, I do not prelisten the stuff. I have an assortment of releases of roughly twenty and I will see how far I will come with these.
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Empyreal
The Final Frontier

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2021 10:13 am 
 

I will probably throw in a few for new albums with no reviews so far... Sommo Inquisitore, Sunrise, Wardrum...
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Death By Wall of Text
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Apr 28, 2021 9:18 pm
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2021 10:20 pm 
 

Btw, that seems to be the case, but - no rule against multiple reviews for the same band?

(I'm not going to review a band's every single but I found at least one very surprising "low-hanging fruit" to me with 3 virgin albums I know quite well)

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hells_unicorn
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 07, 2021 10:55 pm 
 

Death By Wall of Text wrote:
Btw, that seems to be the case, but - no rule against multiple reviews for the same band?

(I'm not going to review a band's every single but I found at least one very surprising "low-hanging fruit" to me with 3 virgin albums I know quite well)


As long as it's unreviewed territory and you're not loading up on best of compilations and singles, you could review as many albums as you want by an individual band. Back in the day it was fairly common for reviewers to hit a few dozen releases by an individual artist, such as Senmuth and Buckethead, both of whom were wildly prolific and not often reviewed here at the time.
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Death By Wall of Text
Metal newbie

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2021 10:26 am 
 

Thanks, that clears it up :)

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orphy
Metal newbie

Joined: Thu May 06, 2004 11:24 pm
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Location: Edmonton, Canada
PostPosted: Tue Jun 08, 2021 11:52 am 
 

Looks like I'm off work again for this one (unless I miraculously get hired somewhere in record time), so I'll likely be able to hammer out more reviews than I thought for this. Looking forward to it!
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lord_ghengis
Still Standing After 38 Beers... hic

Joined: Mon Dec 04, 2006 8:31 pm
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PostPosted: Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:03 am 
 

I've got one lined up. Almost no chance I do more than that.
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MikeyC
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 12, 2021 2:30 am 
 

I would like to participate even a small amount. I always feel my review writing leaves a lot to be desired, but I might contribute a couple if I feel brave enough.
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Slater922
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 13, 2021 8:07 pm 
 

Well, since the challenge starts tomorrow, I'd like to wish everyone good luck in reviewing a bunch of virgin albums. I've got some certain albums to review, and I can't wait to shed some light into some more obscure stuff here!
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hells_unicorn
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 14, 2021 12:32 am 
 

Just hit my first couple reviews, might do one more before I crash, tomorrow morning will be when I try my hand at matching and possibly topping my current record. Not sure if I'll reach it, but I'm in this to up the collective total as much as possible. Best of luck to everyone.
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Last edited by hells_unicorn on Mon Jun 14, 2021 12:41 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Demon Fang
Metal newbie

Joined: Tue Mar 12, 2019 9:42 am
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 14, 2021 12:39 am 
 

Oh, it's review challenge go?

Alright everybody, get your game on!

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hells_unicorn
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PostPosted: Mon Jun 14, 2021 12:40 am 
 

Demon Fang wrote:
Oh, it's review challenge go?

Alright everybody, get your game on!


Yeah, it technically starts at the stroke of midnight, I'm a bit of a night owl so I usually try to hit a couple during the wee hours of the first day to get my groove going.
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gasmask_colostomy
Metalhead

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 14, 2021 2:05 am 
 

hells_unicorn wrote:
Just hit my first couple reviews, might do one more before I crash, tomorrow morning will be when I try my hand at matching and possibly topping my current record. Not sure if I'll reach it, but I'm in this to up the collective total as much as possible. Best of luck to everyone.

Okay man, you're serious! I'll give you something to aim for by the time you wake up :-P
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Drinkenstein
Mallcore Kid

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Location: United States
PostPosted: Mon Jun 14, 2021 4:10 am 
 

First one submitted! I almost never write reviews, so I'm glad these challenges exist to give me a motivational kick in the butt to write something, even if it's just one or two reviews.

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