Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Stone Axe/Mighty High 7"


Ripple Music

Sometime I get kind of cautious about split albums. Sometimes it's because I am only into one of the bands and don't want to hear material by a band I am not interested. Other times I am apprehensive because if it's good I know I will regret that I didn't get more than a a sampling from each band. Newcomers Ripple Music managed to get highly explosive bands onto a 7" with each act contributing a track. Stone Axe are lead by Mos Generator's Tony Reed. They have been extremely busy knocking out three albums in less than two years. For this release they have recorded "Metal Damage". This track has me thinking of pre-Stained class Judas Priest. The kind of mid-1970's metal where band's kind of took their time and built up the sound with a steady boil of activity. This is slightly heavier than I am used from these guys, but obviously it's a style that they enjoy and that shows through. It's good to see them expanding some and this is an approach that works for them as well. Now as good as the Stone Axe song is I think that the Mighty High's track "Don't panic it's organic" is even better. The main riff is huge and dripping with 1970's fuzzed out goodness. This is the perfect tune for playing about two minutes after 5:00 on a Friday as you race home for weekend with the windows blasting this out your windows for all to hear. They hit this one right out of the park as just sounds like it came so easy for them to crank out this monster. So without a doubt both bands deliver the goods on this album. Most importantly each song was so good that I did feel that I got plenty from each band. Okay, they both make me want to pull out their other material to hear more, but that's a good thing too.

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Monday, June 28, 2010

Clash of the album covers

Here you go.

Led Zeppelin-2



Rush-Moving Pictures

***Which cover do you prefer?

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Saturday, June 26, 2010

Danzig-Deth Red Sabaoth

The End

I got into Glenn Danzig during his time with the Misfits and Samhain. The Misfits were a fun although sloppy celebration of punk rock and old horror movies. Samhain were slower and darker, but I was instantly pulled in by their sound. Then came Danzig the band and everything seemed to shift. With the Misfits and Samhain there was an aura of mystery around them. With Danzig the band that feeling was gone. Image was certainly important with the Misfits and Samhain. With Danzig the image took on the fake satanic quality that was laughable. All of a sudden Glenn was doing a lot of posing and acting tough. On top of the music from Danzig was very hit and miss for the most part. However that is the past because this time around Glenn and his band have managed to put together something worth noticing. From the hard pounding opener "Hammer of the Gods" I was immediately hopeful. The flow kept going after with tracks like the "Revengeful" and "Rebel spirit". Guitarist Tommy Victor (Prong, Ministry) provides many highlights with some sharp cutting riffs. He still mamanages to keep much of that dark plodding sound that has defined much of Danzig's work. Glenn himself has not sounded this comfortable in some time. On some of his album in the last twenty years he would very much overdue his vocals. Here he is much subtle and I prefer it. "On a wicked night" is a great example as it opens with the slow pace and Glenn just eases his voice into and just creates the mood as he goes along. The lyrics and general theme of the album are similar to Danzig previous outing. It's just that this time around there is more retraint and the album as a whole benefits greatly from that.

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Early Man-Death Potion


The End

As with their previous albums Early Man still sound like it's 1985. Think back to the early days of thrash when the riffs were raw the production was thin, but the energy and the enthusiasm were high. This is where Early Man's approach stems from. They have obviously spent a lot of time sitting around a basement, garage or whatever listening to the early efforts of Metallica, Exodus, Megadeth, Overkill and others. That's exactly how they sound. On some songs they shine and bring the power of early thrash with them. On other songs they sound rather pedestrian and just seem to be going through the motions. For the most part they do enough to make fans of old style trash appreciate them. However the big down side for me is they accomplished that several years ago. I don't feel that they have moved ahead or even tried to move beyond where they were a few years ago. What they are doing is good, but other than playing this disc a few times for review purposes am I really going to return to "Death Potion" this year if I want to hear thrash? Likely not because although good they are sure not one of the best playing retro thrash or old style metal today. This is a good album, but they never really push to get beyond sounding like a merely decent band from 25 years ago.

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Friday, June 25, 2010

Invection interview

I recently had the chance to interview up and coming thrash act Invection.

MM-Tell us a little about the history of you band.
Andy (bass): The band started out in the spring of 2007 when John, Andrew and myself began practicing together. From then on we just kept playing with each other. With out first stable line up we played our first show in December of 07 and we've gone through a bunch of members up until the current lineup of myself, Andrew, John and our new guitarist Drew.

MM-Who are some of your influences?
Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): We've had a lot of influences over the time we've been a band and each person has their own set of influences which combines and makes for what we think is a fairly different sound. Through the different members we've had our sound has changed a lot since the beginning and each person has put their mark on the sound but probably our biggest influences would be Exodus, The Haunted, Pantera, Testament, Megadeth, Slayer, Arch Enemy and At The Gates. It's mostly a combination of Gothenburg melodic death metal/old school thrash/a little bit of Death metal style groove.

MM-You have a new EP due out soon. Tell us about it.
Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): We've had the EP done for a long time but hadn't gotten it pressed up until recently due to lack of money and a bunch of plans just not working out. We put it for free download online at a bunch of places and the response has been great; now that we have hard copies though we'll be selling it and sending it to magazines for reviews, labels and other places to try to gain more exposure so we're really excited about that. It's already on sale at a couple different sites but it should be at more in the upcoming weeks. We recorded it at Panda Studios in Fremont, CA and took a bit more time with it than Demented Perception due to a bigger budget and I think it turned out a lot better and more polished but every band seems to think their most recently release is the best they've done.

MM-Did you approach this album any differently than your 2009 EP “Demented perception”?
Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): It was approached a lot differently in that we weren't as happy with Demented Perception as we wanted (even though we do like it and think it has its own style it's a little bit raw and not as much was put into it as we would've liked) it to be so we made sure to fix all those flaws in Derealization (better tones, more time spent on recording, different methods of recording etc). Even though there are still some flaws we're not too happy about it definitely came out sounding a lot better and just gave us more experience of what to know and what to do and not to do for the full length. The songs were written in a shorter amount of time than Demented Perception but were more thought out for the structure and the guy who recorded it, Sam, gave us a bunch of ideas for things and really acted as a producer whereas for Demented Perception we didn't have much time and basically went in as fast as possible and got it recorded, mixed, mastered and out there. Demented Perception is definitely good and a lot of people like it and there are some great songs on there but if we had a bigger budget and a bit more experience it could've been better (we think at least).


MM-Where do you the ideas for your song topics?
Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): I write basically whatever I'm feeling or something that interests me that relates to a greater theme for the release. On the new EP it's really a bunch of songs about mental problems and psychological issues because that's what's interesting and real to me so instead of writing songs about fantasy or over the top satanic stuff I tend to write about more realistic issues and things that people can relate to or think about if they read the lyrics; I think it adds a more human aspect and that comes out in the vocals and songs where there's more attachment to them and it comes through in the music. There are times when the guys will bring in an idea for a song with a couple lyrics maybe that I'll tweak a bit and turn into full song lyrics but for the most part I've been the main writer of the lyrics because it's just come really easily to me (though I still have a lot of room to improve in terms of writing vocal lines I think which is where the other guys help and give a lot of ideas). Hopefully in the future the lyrics and vocal lines will just get better and with the combination of all of us it'll really help on making for some interesting songs that have good lyrics while not becoming too much like a book or boring and not music.

MM-Why two EPs and not a full length? To go along with that, I know you mentioned you will be doing a full length in the near future. Any time line on that?
Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): We actually have 3 EP's if you count our first one which is World Plague that we did in 2008 but it's really hard to find now as we never got it to any sort of label or real pressing so it's mostly cd-r's with covers and only a few people have it. We mostly did EP's because we never really had the money or felt we were really ready to do a full length; it felt better to do a bunch of smaller releases as we wrote new songs and evolved and sent our releases to media and labels along with posting them on the internet for people to hear about us. It's actually been a good thing for us because if we had recorded a full album in 2009 or 2008 we wouldn't have been ready and it probably would've sounded mediocre but now that we've recorded a bunch of times, played live a ton and gotten much better at writing songs it should really be a great cd and able to stand on it's own as a debut of the sound we should've had all along but were just building up until this point. That combined with the fact that internet promotion has gotten a lot of people to hear us means that hopefully when we get it actually released we can get it released on a wide scale and reach the people who hadn't heard of us before and show them how we sound and also hopefully make something that satisfies the people that have liked us in the past and heard our stuff on the internet.
All we know right now is that we'll be recording it at 2 studios (Panda Studios in Fremont, CA and another studio in San Francisco for drums) in late August and it'll be 5 old songs slightly tweaked and rerecorded (1 from World Plague, 2 from Demented Perception and 2 from Derealization). Once we have the recording completely done, art completely done and everything is set we'll be shopping it to labels to see if anyone is interested in signing us and to see what kind of distribution we can get as we really want this CD to reach places we've never reached before. It's going to be a much longer recording process than our previous releases and hopefully will be much much better than anything we've done before.

MM-What are some of your favorite tracks on the new album and why?
John (drums): Favorite song for me was Noetic Affliction because I love the texture
of the song and I am really into all that The Haunted melodic shit.

MM-How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard you before?

Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): Our sound is like if you were making a metal dinner and took new Exodus (Tempo of the damned to present), The Haunted (from rEVOLVEr up until now), old Pantera and put them in a blender then sprinkled it with some old school Arch Enemy (anything up until Burning Bridges).

MM-What are thrash bands such as yourself doing that the thrash bands of the 1980’s didn’t do?

Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): The most obvious change would obviously be internet promotion as that's gotten us a huge number of fans we couldn't have reached before. Bands in the 80s had to copy and trade tapes and it made it hard to find out about all the bands out there up until now because bands can use myspace, facebook, last.fm, official forums and other methods of online promotion to get their music out there. There's a huge number of thrash bands now like there were in the 80s but the difference is every single band is able to be heard so the ones that work the hardest and have the best music can be heard and get out there if they really put a bunch of time into it while others that are either unlucky or not very good end up getting forgotten about. We use the internet a lot and are active in myspace, facebook, our official forum on Thrashunlimited.com and other places which allows us to get our music out to people who back in the 80s would've never been able to hear us. Technology has definitely helped us in terms of promotion and being able to get a CD out there where in the 80s we might not even have had that chance at all, no matter how big or small it is.


MM-What bands have you played with so far?

Andy (bass): We have played with the likes of D.R.I., Fear Factory, Dying Fetus, Arsis, Misery Index, Warrel Dane, Sworn Enemy, Pro-Pain, and Hatchet to name a few.

MM-Who would you love to share a stage with?

Andy (bass): I would love to share the stage with Testament as they are one of my all time favorites and playing with them would be a dream come true.
John (drums): Messhugah.

MM-Tell us about some of your most memorable shows?

John (drums): Most memorable show for me was CA Metal Fest. Because we made the crowd dig our stuff and we were the only thrash act that day so we
stood out amongst a lot of people.

MM-Who comes to your shows? Do you get a lot of old school thrashers or younger fans or a mixture?

Andy (bass): I believe that we get such a good balance of ages because the older thrashers always try to make it out to see us while the younger fans are just getting into the genre so they go to as many shows as they can.

MM-What are some of the best albums you have heard so far in 2010?
Andy (bass): The new Exodus is really amazing as is the new As I Lay Dying, the guitars on that album are outrageous.

MM-Where do you want this band to be in five years?
Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): Hopefully in 5 years we'll have worked enough that we're able to be on a big label such as Century Media or Nuclear Blast and are able to do world tours at least supporting the bands we enjoy now that have paved the way for us. Even though it's not likely we'd ever make any real money and be able to do music as a full time job it'd be great to figure out a way to still be able to make music, tour the world, play on a bunch of huge festivals and play places for people we've never played for before. With label backing it'd also give us the ability to be more widely distributed and allow us even more time to work on our albums so hopefully by then we'll be touring all over and have been able to record our 2nd album exactly the way we want which would be great.


MM-Pick the band from the following pairs that you prefer and tell why you picked them.
Merciless Death or Warbringer
Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): I'd have to say Warbringer because their most recent album is amazing and they've really put in the time on the road to make sure everyone hears their music; it seems like they tour and work harder than most other bands I've seen.

Vio-lence or Death Angel
Andy (bass): Death Angel because they have a more varied sound and do a lot more while Vio-lence is just blistering thrash with little variation. The vocals are also much more enjoyable with death angel because mark can actually sing.

Heathen or Testament
Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): Everyone else would probably say Testament but I think Heathen because I've always loved all their albums and even though they haven't put out a lot, everything they've released has been amazing. Their new album has been worked on so long I thought it'd end up feeling stale and not very good but it completely proved me wrong.

Exodus or Slayer
Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): Definitely Exodus because not only are they one of our biggest influences but they've consistently released amazingly heavy albums since the start and have a style completely their own. Slayer also have their own style and have recorded a couple of the best thrash metal albums ever but when compared to Exodus even though Reign in Blood might be the best thrash metal album ever, their other stuff doesn't compare as well to Exodus (especially now).

MM-Anything else that you want to say about your band, your music or any other topic?
Andrew (vocals/lead guitar): Thanks for interviewing us and having an interest in our music and we hope everyone enjoys our music and checks out our newest EP "Derealization" and our new album when it comes out.


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Thursday, June 24, 2010

What's coming up?

Tomorrow:Invection interview
Saturday:Fen review
Next week: Reviews of two Mass re-issues plus the latest from Danzig, Early Man and the Stone Axe/Mighty High seven inch.
Also:Clash of the album covers and an interview with Stone Axe

I'll have to put LO2E on hold right now because I just don't have the time to do one and I have a lot of CDs to review.

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Pearl-Little imaculate white fox

White Fox

Every review of this album seems to include all of the connections for Pearl Aday. So I'll clear all those out two before we get to the music. She is Meatloaf's Daughter, wife of Scott Ian of Anthrax and she is a former Motley Crue back-up singer. Scott Ian plays on this album plus Ted Nugent and Jerry Cantrell are guests on it. Okay, there's all of the namedropping and attachments so let's get at what's really here. This is blues based hard rock with some classic rock elements thrown in although it's a bit sugar coated in places. I guess that helps it to be more accessible to a wider audience. It took me a few songs to really warm up to Pearl's voice. The opener "Rock Child" comes on at a strong steady pace, but her vocals sound a bit stiff on the is one. It wasn't until her cover of Ike and Tina Turner's "Nutbush City Limits" that I think she really opens up her voice and begins to sound comfortable. From there on out she warms up and belts out a fairly good performance. Most of the songs are in the medium paced range as far as music goes. Still Pearl does a decent job of showing some versatility with her voice and pushing the limits from time to time. Although I think this is something I would like to see her do more of and take more chances on future releases becase I certainly think that she could handle it. I think that there is certainly room for this with today's musical audiences and that she has done a fine job of showing at least a good glimpse of what she is capable of brining to the music world.

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Wednesday, June 23, 2010


My five year blogiversary was actually two days ago, but I just now remembered. I have somehow kept this thing going for five years and two days now. Thanks for reading. In honor of this I'll give you five lists of fives.

Five albums that I could listen to at any given time without getting bored.

1-Iron Maiden-The number of the beast

2-Van Halen-Fair Warning

3-Led Zepplein-Houses of the holy


5-Alice Cooper-Love it to death

Five 80's metal bands that never got their due


2-Cirith Ungol


4-At War


Five CDs that I own that aren't really even good enough to be used as coasters


2-Warrant-Cherry Pie

3-Judas Priest-Nostrodamus


5-Lita Ford-Wicked Wonderland

Five releases I surprisingly don't own on CD, but really need to get at some point

1-Judas Priest-Point of entry

2-Helloween-Walls of Jericho

3-Grim Reaper-Seee you in hell/Fear no evil disc

4-Van Halen-2

5-KISS-Dressed to kill

Five cool things I own on vinyl

1-Iron Maiden-Maiden Japan-Not as much rare as it is cool that I found it in a dumpster in good shape.

2-Venom-Manitou twelve inch. One of my favorite Venom songs with a cool cover

3-Black Sabbath-Paranoid seven inch with the Vertigo logo on one side of the label so you be in trance as you watch it sping on the turntable.

4-Judas Priest-Sad wings of destiny picture disc.

5-Rush-Archives-Not rare or anything, but it's a three album set that I got in great shape for $2.

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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Clash of the album covers

It is...

Bathory-Under the sign of the black mark


Seventh Angel-Lament for the weary

***Which cover do you prefer?

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Monday, June 21, 2010

Battle of the bands

It's two of the best hard rock acts of their time.




***Who do you prefer?

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Sunday, June 20, 2010

Gallow's End-Nemesis Divine



Let's see ewww, there's a big spooky skeleton guy on the cover and the mandatory semi-calligraphy type script logo. Seen all that before and even before my fingers grabbed the disc I knew it was going to be old school type metal. Then I plopped into the player and was absolutely steamrolled by this band. Classic style metal I expected, but top of the line 80's metal on this band's debut? Nope, didn't see that one coming. Plenty of bands today think they are picking up in the tracks of metal's founding fathers. Plenty of those bands are wrong because they just go through the motions and lack the passion, skill, aggression or a combination of all of those. Sweden's Gallow's End have managed to knock an albums worth of songs that recall the likes of Grim Reaper, Iron Maiden, Armored Saint, King Diamond and others. Yet this isn't just another copy, clone, retread band. No, this is top of the line grab you by the throat, full on assault style of metal. Yet it's fresh enough to not just be stuck totally in the past as evidenced by fantastic tracks like "The Curse" and "Not your own". The production is excellent and the guitars are particularly impressive. The vocals are powerful and consistent even during the different paces that the band follows. Not a weak song in the bunch either and Gallow's Eve show a fair amount of diversity by easily handling heavy pounding songs, mid-range grinders and slower tracks with the same amount of skill and energy. Fans of real classic metal are in for a treat with this one.


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Clash of the album covers

Here you go...

Budgie-If I Were Britannia I'd Wave the Rules


Hawkwind-Hall of the Mountain Grill

**Which cover do you prefer?

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Saturday, June 19, 2010

Chillihounds-Welcome to the show




About 20 seconds into the high spirited opener "Hello!hello!hello" I realized what I was going to get from the Chillihounds. Predicability isn't a bad thing when the results are this down right fun. This is an extremely loose, laid back, tail-kicking kind of hard rock that calls upon numerous sources although mostly the mid -late 1970's. Imagine if KISS, AC/DC, Ted Nugent and maybe even The Cult ran into each other at a wild party. Well that's where this sound starts, but not where it ends. I imagine these guys are fantastic live because they have that kind spontaneous yet energetic vibe to them that has me believing they could be even better in front of an audience. A lot of bands today reach back a few decades for inspiration and that's nothing new. The key for thse guys is they don't too bogged down in patterns or following their influences step by step. I think they practice enough to know what to do and then just bring that to the studio and explode. The results are enough to push them past the many of the other bands I heard with similar influences. You aren't get a lot of flash or great technical skill from this one, but you will have a good time.

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Primal Fear-Live in the U.S.A



Live albums are often hit and miss for me. Sometimes a band just explodes on a live album. Other times it sounds like the studio versions with some crowd noise and maybe some between song banter thrown in. Let's see how German classic metal act Primal Fear stack up. So twelve years into their recording career Primal Fear release their first official live album. Primal Fear to me have always been like 90% Judas Priest and maybe 10% their own ideas. Even though they are perhaps low on the originality scale they do have two major points in their favor. One is that they do a good job of sounding like Priest and the other is that they have been around during that the real Judas Priest have been recoding poor album after poor album. Primal Fear are confident in what they do and that's a major selling point for this live album. They come across as a larger than life metal machine with and overwhelmingly loud and heavy sound. The disc presents an intro and thirteen tracks that serve like a live anthology pulling from several albums. The versions here are not much different from their studio counterparts. However the performances are so tight that fans are still going to pleased enough to have a definite interest in this album.

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Slowly, slowly, slowly said the sloth

Betweeen work, the kids and other things I have not gotten much writing done in the last two days. Stick with me reviews, LO2E and other stuff will hopefully come flowing from my fingers soon enough.

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Thursday, June 17, 2010

What's coming up?

Almost done with the busiest work week of the year. Trying to survie the cats' flea problems as we treat them. Also about four weeks ago I got back to doing more running again. Feels good, but I have to get up about 30-45 minutes earlier each day to do it.
For writing purposes I'll hopefully have a Primal Fear review out on Friday and Lesser of two evils on Saturday. After that next week's schedule will include will hopefully include reviews of the latest from Pearl, Gallow's End, Chillihounds and Fen. Plus Clash of the album covers and Battle of the bands and an interview with Invection.

***Have a great week!

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Surprising vocalist changes

When a band you like changes vocalist there are plenty of occasions where it is and obvious upgrade (Bruce Dickinson, Joey Belladonna) or downgrade (Sammy Hagar, Brian Johnson). I was thinking about bands I was into and singers I liked then the band changed singers. Before the album came out my feelings were that it wasn't going to work. They could replace this vocalist, but I was wrong. Either they found someone just as good or it was a slight upgrade. Here are my top choices, feel free to add your own.

Metal Church- Mike Howe in for David Wayne
Wayne's voice helped define those first two albums. Howe had a different voice, but just as powerful. It allowed the band to go in slightly different, but just as powerful direction.

Helloween- Andi Deris in for Michael Kiske
I am sure there are some fans who will totally disagree with me on this one. Kiske helped elevate this band and define power metal in it's early days. Deris was a different style, but they worked the music with his voice and the results are som fine albums over the last 16 years.

Dark Angel- Ron Rinehart in for Don Doty
I got into this band with Doty and Darkness Descends is still my favorite, but Rinehart brought a heavier direction to the band.

Exodus- Steve Souza in for Paul Baloff
Bonded by blood is still my favorite album and Baloff delivered a fine performance. Souza brought a more controlled performance and allowed the band to go in directions that they may not have able to go with Baloff.

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Wednesday, June 16, 2010




Invection roll out their third EP and it was less than a year that I heard 2009's Demented Perception. Only four tracks this time around, but even so you can instantly hear the progress that this band is making. It's deeply founded in the roots of 80's thrash with traces of Exodus, Slayer and Testament as prime sources. The influences may even be more obvious this time around, but Invection manage to pump some more power and energy into the equation. The results are a hyper form of thrash that adds in more speed and aggression, but still retains the killer riffs and the pounding heaviness that helps define the best bands of this genre. There are so many young bands emerging playing old style thrash, but so many of them just stay fixed to sounding exactly like their influences and they don't listeners enough of a reason to listen to them instead of the bands they are attempting to emulate. Not so with Invection as they take their influences and pull out what they like about the sound, but they are adding their own energy to it. I can slowly hear Invection beginning to define their own style. And as good as "Demented Perception" was it's even more obvious on "Derealization" that Invection are growing in confidence and that their songwriting is improving as well. If there is one area where the band could improve I would say maybe look at extending some of the songs. They have the ability to do longer songs so maybe it's just a matter of choice, but I think it's something they could do if they choose to. Only a few songs here, but every one is a heavyweight. Definitely worth checking out.


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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Cauldron interview


Classic style metal band Cauldron recently returned from playing some dates in the UK and Europe. So I got to talk to Ian Chains and find out about how those shows went and more.

MM-Please introduce the members of your band and tell what instrument they play.

Hi! There's Jason Decay on Bass/Vocals, Ian Chains on Lead Guitar and Chris Steve on Drums of Doom.

MM-Tell us a little about the history of you band.

Cauldron formed in August 2006 from what was left of Goat Horn after their breakup. Their guitar player had quit a couple months previously, so I (Ian) moved out to Toronto to play guitar. So the first lineup included Jason and Al Chambers from Rammer/Toxic Holocaust on drums. Since Jason was the only original Goat Horn member he decided to change the name to Cauldron. We released the self financed "Into the Cauldron" EP in early 2007 and the full length "Chained to the Nite" on Earache in early 2009. Since then we've gone through more drummers and now have Chris Steve on the throne.

MM-Who are your influences?

It's hard to pick a few bands, but we listen to a lot of US power metal (Savage Grace, Wild Dogs, Griffin etc.), early Scandinavian metal (Parasite, Witch Cross, OZ etc.), NWOBHM (Angel Witch, Hell, Jaguar etc.), Canadian bands (Reckless, Killer Dwarfs, Rush etc.), and
lots of other stuff!

MM-Obviously you are huge fans of 80’s metal so what do you think was so good about metal in the 1980’s as compared to metal in more recent years?

Well nobody was playing it safe back then. Now there are more bands emerging that aren't afraid to look or sound a certain way. But still, we played a lot of festivals this spring where every single other band had camo pants and goatees. How is that cool? If was a kid just getting into metal, I wouldn't want to listen to guys who look like that. Image is just as important as the music. You need to
have the whole package.

MM-You recently played a UK tour with Enforcer. How did that go? Any interesting stories or great moments from those shows?

Well it was a pretty small tour considering there were 4 shows booked and 1 got cancelled. We were trying to make it to Manchester but got 2 flats tires along the way. The curfew at this "metal" bar was 10pm. We tried to get the promoter to push it back so we could play, but they had a DJ night afterwards, playing metal songs! Wouldn't they rather have real bands play? The London show was great, but the other
2 shows we played were on the same night as Slayer! Great booking there! We were just glad to be playing with Enforcer again. We would slide the van door open and "grind" people at bus stops, which was 9 guys screaming at people that they would be raped and burned. Boredom strikes again!

MM-You also just played Muskelrock in Sweden with Ross the Boss, Angelwitch, Electric Wizard and a ton of other bands. How did that go?

Muskelrock was great. We played last year as well and this was just as fun. Actually we were all planning on going whether we got to play or not. Angel Witch easily stole the show, it was great to finally see them play. I was also looking forward to seeing Overdrive but they didn't play their best song "Fighting Man"! There was also a band I enjoyed called Slingblade with a singer that sounds like Kate
from Acid.


MM-How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard you before?

Heavy Metal with no camo pants or goatees.

MM-I was reading your North American tour blog on your Myspace page. You guys hit a lot of record shops along the way snagging some classic and even obscure metal on vinyl. So do you guys have a huge collection of metal on vinyl? Do you own any great jems that you want to mention? Any rarities that you hope to get your hands on at some point?

Yeah we always try to find time to go to record stores in every city. Jason and I both have pretty decent metal collections. I guess we have about 2,000 records between the both of us. I don't think there's anything that's worth an insane amount but Jason's got the original Lips "Hard n' Heavy" and I have the worlds largest Krokus collection. I'm always looking for Gotham City "Black Writs" and "The Unknown". I think I've got to live in Sweden to find those though.

MM-What are some of the best record stores that you have been to in the last year?

There was a good one in Calgary called Recordland that had lots of great stuff, Octopus Ink in Edmonton had good stuff but they were pricey and closed down. And Jason's been to some store in Uppsala, Sweden a couple times and found some stuff.

MM-What interests do you have besides music?

Drinking, BBQ'ing, Nintendo and horror movies with metal bands on the soundtrack.

MM-If you could only listen to three albums during the next month then what would you choose?

I would probably choose the first 3 records in my playlist right now, so Brats "1980", 1st Bathory and Zero Nine "Headline".

MM-You covered Black n’ Blue’s “Chains around heaven” on Chained to the nite. This seemed like a bit of an odd choice. As they were more of a glam/hard rock band and you guys seem more into the classic metal and NWOBHM bands. So are you closet glam fans or was it to tie in with a “chains” theme or what?

The reason we covered Chains Around Heaven was because we're big fans of the Metal Massacre series, and that was a standout track on Metal Massacre 1. We're not closet glam fans by any means. We'll listen to Cinderella and Diamond Rexx loud and proud. The whole chains thing wasn't intentional, it just came together like that.

MM-Do you currently play any other cover songs live?

We almost always include Tyrant's "Making Noise and Drinking Beer" in our set. We also used to play "Free Country" by Witchfinder General,"Deathrider" by Omen, and "Metal Knights" by Nasty Savage. We haven't dusted those ones off for a while though.

MM-Tell us about some of your most memorable shows?

One would be on the Municipal Waste tour last November when we played an all ages show in Anaheim. The place was packed with kids all hopped up on Mountain Dew and with gashes on their heads. Then Ryan Waste came onstage and started doing pushups. Another would be our worst show ever on the Toxic Holocaust tour. It might have been more memorable from the audience's perspective since we can't remember it. We had been shotgunning beers all day, and by the time we hit the stage we were completely fucked. Jason couldn't stand or sing, our drummer seemed to have passed out behind his kit, and I was just staring at my hands wondering what to do with them.

MM-Who would you love to share a stage with?

Angel Witch. I think we'd fit really well on the same bill as them. We're not ready to tour with some huge band yet and get treated like scum.

MM-What would you say to someone who said that you are not doing anything that hadn't already been done in the early/mid 1980’s?

You're wrong, we're doing it worse!

MM-Any touring plans lined up for the summer or are you going back to writing for the next album soon?

We only have a couple one off shows planned for Toronto and Ottawa. We're concentrating on getting all our new songs in shape for the next album. Hopefully we'll be in the studio by the end of the summer.

MM-What are some of the best albums you have heard so far in 2010?

Enforcer "Diamonds" and Witchgrave "The Devil's Night"


MM-Pick the band from the following pairs that you prefer and tell why you picked them.

Raven or Saxon

That's too hard. I like both those bands too much to choose!

Enforcer or White Wizzard

Enforcer. They're really good friends of ours, and we love going on extremely long drives with them.

Annihilator or Exciter

Exciter. Dan Beehler lent us his 1981 road case for our last Canadian tour, how cool is that?

Angelwitch or Mercyful Fate

Angel Witch. We've met them twice now and they've been really cool. They used my flying v as a backup at Muskelrock. I was really hoping they'd break a string and have to use it!

MM-Anything else that you want to say about your band, your music or any other topic?

Don't fuck with fire!

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Monday, June 14, 2010

Clash of the album covers

Two different styles perhaps, but the skies on both had me thinking that they needed to be paired up against each other.

Avantasia-The Wicked Symphony


Heathen-The evolution of chaos

***Which cover do you prefer?

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Sunday, June 13, 2010

Steelwing-Lord of the wastleand


Noise Art

In the last decade or so the number of bands playing old style metal and hard rock has increased greatly. There are plenty of bands playing 80's glam/hair metal and a huge outpouring of retro-thrash bands. Now there also bands whose prime influences stem from classic metal and the NWOBHM scene. Sweden certainly has it's share of young bands playing 80's style music these days, but many of them have been glam style acts. Well here is Steelwing from Sweden who obviously have much love for classic, denim and leather type metal from the 80's. You can certainly hear the likes of Iron Maiden, Saxon, Anvil and others on "Lord of the wasteland". They have a strong focus on their main riffs and they deliver on almost every song. The songs are fairly basic, but as guitar driven metal goes it's powerful enough to work. They are both aggressive and confident in their work and it shows. Their Myspace page says they formed last year as they formed out of the ashes of Hellevator, but you sure wouldn't know that they had only been together for a short time because they work great as a unit. The ideas are now new although their enthusiasm and energy level is higher than a number of other young bands attempting this style in today's scene and that does make a difference. They also attempt more pace changes than I was expecting. Not all of them work, but many do and I certainly admire them for taking a few chances. This is easily one of the better classic style metal albums I have heard this year. I do hope that in the future that the band keeps forging ahead and continues to take a few chances and continue to build their own identity. I think they have the potential to be one of the best of the old style metal bands going today.


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Saturday, June 12, 2010

Canvas Polaris-Irradiance



Progressive metal and prog-rock in general are styles where I know rather quickly what I think of a band. There is typically not a lot of middle ground for me when I judge this type of music. Most prog type bands fall into one of two categories for me either they leave me feeling cold because they concentrate so much on the technical aspect and very little on the emotion or they find a balance between skill and emotion and they pull in completely. Enough about my grading though because the new one from Georgia's Canvas Solaris easily falls into that second category. This is more instrumental prog-metal and as good as anything they have created during their ten years of recording. It's still the kind of music that might most be appreciated by musicians instead of just the average fan. However there is definitely more of a metal edge and even a more direct approach from the band this time around. This slight in change likely calls for the listener to step up to really be able to absorb the busy almost continually changing cycle that is going on. When you do focus is you will be rewarded by an album that is pleasing on different levels. The playing level is fantastic, that's a given. On an emotional level they manage to find the right between sounds and textures to really build the song and have you excited about what is coming next. These were my feelings from the first play and that analysis was confirmed upon repeated listenings. I have been a fan of these for several years, but I think that they have undoubtedly outdone themselves this time around.

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Clash of the album covers

Two covers with monsters and lots of orange. It is...


Behold the Monolith-s/t



Lich King-World gone dead

***Which cover do you prefer?

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Friday, June 11, 2010

What's coming up?

I still have a review of the new Canvas Solaris and a Lesser of two evils to get out this week. Next week will hopefully see reviews of the latest from Primal Fear, Invection and Steelwing plus Clash of the album covers and an interview with Cauldron.

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Thursday, June 10, 2010

Jumping Jack-Cows and whisky


I love it when stoner rock actually rocks instead of just being caught in a heavy fog. French band Jumping Jack not only know it-they could actually give lessons on how to do it. The six tracks on this EP hit you a truck full of hammers and keep pounding all the way through. Think of Fireball Ministry, Sasquatch (the band not the guy who poses for blurry pictures) and Soundgarden all tossed into a blender, chopped together and then poured out for you listening pleasure. Jumping Jack are kind of like that only more direct and maybe even meaner. A lot of bands try to look and dress rough, but these guys have that dirty heavy, nasty hard music just oozing out of the instruments. They probably can't help because it sure sounds like this all comes easy for them. This is stoner rock with genuine grooves which really helps the whole thing move like a single vehicle. A large monstrous vehicle with gigantic wheels crushing all in it's path, but still a vehicle. That is one of their best attributes and that's refreshing because so many stoner rock bands sit there without a direction or very little movement. Jumping Jack know how to be heavy and slow enough, but still keep the ball rolling. When I saw the Jack Daniels inspired logo I was expecting a glam type disc for some reason, but hey it turned out to be a very pleasant surprise. Of course I can't wait to here what they will do on a full length release.

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Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Lich King interview


Lich King are set to release their third album in just a few days. I recently had the pleasure of finding out more about their new release and their plans for the future.

-Please introduce the members of your band and tell what instrument they play.

Tom, vocals - Brian - drums, Erick - guitar, Kevin - guitar, Joe - bass and catering.
Tell us a little about the history of you band.

-We started in 1995 as a swing / big band project, because that was the big cool thing at the time. As time went on the music shifted organically according to whatever was popular. We went through a boy band phase, a nu-metal phase (we called ourselves Lich Bizkit back then) and a very short-lived run as a Tony Bennett cover band. By the time we started doing albums, thrash metal was the in thing so we jumped on that bandwagon and rode it all the way to fame and riches. This "thrash metal" revival phase starting to cool down now so we're looking for the next big thing. Ooh, did someone say autotune?

-You have a new album do out soon. Tell us about it.

World Gone Dead's got 9 original songs and a Slayer cover, and everything on it is balls-out awesome.

-Did you approach this album any differently than your previous releases? If so then how?

Not really from a writing standpoint- the writing is always "write the best thrash song possible" from the start of each song. This time the real difference is in production. If you've listened to our 2nd album, you heard some pretty bad production. If you heard our 1st album, you've heard some godawful production. That's because I did the production myself. This time we used PDP studios and a clever producer who's NOT me, and the difference is unbelievable. We're tempted to re-record the old stuff with this new sound.

-What are some of your favorite tracks on the new album and why?

Hmm... well, ED-209 is my personal flat-out favorite because it's the song I most feel that I would love if I were just a listener. If I'd heard some band put this song out, I'd be a frothing fan. It's stompy, it's thrashy, it's fun. GRINDWHEEL is a favorite mostly because it's a very old song- it's the 2nd or 3rd song we ever wrote, back in 2005 or thereabouts. We decided to bring it back for this album and it's all heavy n' stuff and a nice departure from the typical speed-speed-speed thing. BEHAVER is another favorite because the end of that song, the last 35 seconds, may be the thrashiest thing we ever wrote.

-How would you describe your sound to someone who has never heard you before?

Ummm... well it's pretty douchey to describe your band as (other band A) meets (other band B) but that really is the best way to bring it home. I like to think we're Gary Holt's songwriting style with Violence's propensity to continually up the anxiety, Scott Ian's stompy sections and a taste of Municipal Waste's punchy riff flavor. Aaand though it's a cardinal sin to list Metallica as an influence, guess what.

-What interests do you have besides music?

We're all into a number of things, and not just in the typical "pizza, boobs & beer" way. Erick is an amateur MMA fighter. Brian's into baseball and programs game tracks for the Rock Band network. Kevin's getting his master's in economics. Joe likes biking and snowboarding and I like geeky stuff like Magic: The Gathering, Joss Whedon crap and internet surfing. We're all fans of video games, IT'S ALWAYS SUNNY IN PHILADELPHIA and metal people not being dicks.


-Why should people buy your new album?

Because if you like thrash metal, you either love this album or you're a total tool.

-What bands have you played with so far?

Not too many... Razormaze, Skull Hammer, Witchaven, Hatchet, Katahdin, Brain Infection, etc.. we only started doing live shows in December so there's not a big list of shows that we've played just yet.

-Who would you love to share a stage with?

D.R.I., Bonded By Blood, Exodus... Vindicator and Fatal, cough cough

-Tell us about some of your most memorable shows?

Uhhh... well our best show was probably in Greenfield MA. Not too many people showed up and by the time we were on we were pretty much only playing for the members of the other bands. That created a weird kinda laid-back energy where we just tried to do our best and the other bands moshed appreciatively. For some reason my crowd banter was great that night.

-Any touring plans lined up for the summer?

Nope... sadly. We were working on something and real life got in the way.

-What are some of the best albums you have heard so far in 2010?

The only albums of 2010 I've heard so far have been Razormaze's MISERIES, Fatal's CAST INTO FILTH and Exodus' EXHIBIT B. I love new thrash but there hasn't been much of it this year, I guess, and I don't keep up with much metal outside of thrash. I couldn't tell you what the hell the bands Terrorizer constantly features have been doing, because I don't care.

-When the new album comes out you will have had three albums out in four years.
That’s very productive. How do you keep yourself motivated to keep going at this pace?

Every now and then I hear a song and think "damn, that's a good song. I want to write a song like that." I never wind up imitating a song but they always start off inspired by a song I just enjoyed. The best example might be how GRINDWHEEL was inspired directly by Overkill's HORRORSCOPE. Sooo once I'm inspired I'll start writing and the song will tell me what it wants to be as I write it.

-Where do you want this band to be in five years?

Broken up with harsh feelings on all sides JUST KIDDING HAHA LOL.

Pick the band from the following pairs that you prefer and tell why you picked them.

Exodus or Overkill
Exodus, because they write better thrash more often. In my opinion at least. No disrespect to Overkill, but I find their songs to be much more "meh" by comparison, and there's always something to love in any Exodus song.

Bonded by blood or Fueled by fire
That's a bit tougher as we're good pals with Bonded By Blood, but Fueled By Fire's first album is really a lot more my style. I'd go with FBF for music but I'd rather hang out with BBB than just about anyone.

Anthrax or Metallica
Metallica. Sorry. Those first four albums are unbelievably good, despite how the jilted revisionists will pretend they were never all that impressed.

Death or Slayer
Slayer. Not a Death fan at all.

-Anything else that you want to say about your band, your music or any other topic?

Not really...? I dunno, if you like thrash check us out, and if you like Mastodon please neuter yourself with a pair of hedge clippers.



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Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Blood of the black owl-A banishing ritual



On their third release Seattle's Blood of the black owl construct a style that pulls upon elements of drone, ambient black metal and other styles. That barely scratches the surface of their sound because they are very far from typical. There is nothing truly direct about their music because they construct their songs through long stretches. The music revolves around flute and guitars that vary between subtle and faint up to menacing and dark. The drums also run the range from being vary much in the background up to leading the attack of creating a mood of imminent terror. In terms of real metal it takes a while to get to any parts that fall under that heading and even then they are used sparingly. The echoing vocals don't start until well into the disc. This isn't the easiest album to take and those lacking patience are going to be hard pressed to take the whole thing. It took me a few listens to really appreciate what BOTBO were doing and to absorb all that they were presenting. Eventually I caught on and the swirling, deep sounds pulled me in and even had a hypnotic effect on me at times. There is a terrifying quality at times that slowly creeps up on you. Now there were plenty of other moments where the sounds and music are just slowly winding along and it's not always a trail that is easy to follow. This is probably an album that works best as background music and I can appreciate it in that respect. I eventually did take to this release, but I know it's certainly an album where I would have to be in the right mood to appreciate it. However I definitely could see myself listening to it on a stormy night after the kids have gone to sleep I might put it into the computer and listen through headphones. Of course I would be looking over my shoulder frequently too.

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Monday, June 07, 2010

Clash of the album covers

It is...


King Diamond-Voodoo



Wayne-Metal Church

***Which cover do you prefer?

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Sunday, June 06, 2010



Some bands are just easy to pin. Italian outfit Kani play a kind of charged up bare bones rock and roll that's highly influences by the likes of Motorhead and Nashville Pussy. The fire up the amps, get pumped up on nicotine and whatever else and then just explode with rough no nonsense tunes that revolve around a mix of metal, punk and hard rock. The topics revolve around sex, cigarettes, rock and roll and others. They mix a fair amount of humor in with their attitude. There sure are not going to shale up the world or revolutionize the music world, but obviously they are not out to do that either. Kani seem to be doing exactly what they wanted to by cranking out straight up heavy rock that's easy to enjoy. I did feel slightly shorted as many of the songs were over so quickly. Then about halfway into the album "Dead Soul Cowboy" popped up and took over seven minutes while showing that the band could construct some slightly more involved songs. Kani are not reinventing rock, but they do play a fun and energetic brand of music that will put a smile on your face.

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Battle of the bands

NWOBHM match-up this go around.




***Which band do you prefer?

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Friday, June 04, 2010

Forcentury interview

Forcentury hail form Denmark and play a classic style of power metal. I recently had the opportunity to ask them some questions and find out more. They answered the questions as a group. Forcentury are:

Johnn - Vocals
Marc - Guitars
Jens-Christian - Guitars
Kristian "Iver" Iversen - Bass
Jonas - Drums
Andreas - Keyboards


-Hello, please introduce members of your band and tell what instrument they play.

Hey there! The band consists of guitar players Marc Masters and Jens-Christian "JaCK" Kijne, bass player Iver, keyboard player Andreas Palsgård, drummer Jonas Landt and the Scottish lead vocalist Johnn Thunder.

-Tell us about the history of your band?

Forcentury was conceived by Marc, Jonas and Andreas as their old band split up in spring 2008. They were dissatisfied with playing in a band without a powerful sense of brotherhood, and –along with the strong desire to make heavy music that could stand the test of time – this became our prime target. These two core values were fused to form the band name, which is constructed from the words “force” and “century”. During our first 6 months, we were blessed first with second shredder JaCK and then with our lead vocalist Johnn. We wrote songs diligently and started gigging in 2009. Simultaneously we began work on our debut album Vanguard. Bass player Iver joined when the album was almost fully recorded, but he committed himself fully to the music and we could present the album in November 2009 as a combined endeavor.

-Tell us about your album "Vanguard"?

Well, the album was recorded during 2009 in both Earplug Studio in Copenhagen and our own studio facilities and it's completely self-financed. The do-it-yourself production process felt totally natural to us. It certainly pushed us to make the very best possible record with the means we had at our disposal. We also made good use of our friends, families and our producer Pede from Earplug Studio, who all contributed to the finished product. The end result in many ways shows the world what we are - and even though we don't claim to have reinvented anything, we do feel that the record stands as a genuine tribute to the music we love.

-What has been the response to the album so far?

Absolutely great. We had never expected to get such sweet ratings and reviews, and even though we try not to listen to critics, it still is quite flattering and motivational to get positive publicity.

-I love the cover art. Who is the artist?

The cover is a digital painting by Alen Domazet. He was asked to create a scenario with an eerie vibe and hints of sci-fi, which shouldn't be too easy to interpret - rather a bit ambiguous. The "thing" could be interpreted as a collected expression of our songs though - a heavy, relentless piece of machinery moving across the desert. The first to appear of its kind, but definitely not the last!

-What are some of your favorite songs on the album? Why?

We all have personal favourites, but a common stand out track remains the opener, Land of Mirrors. It's the first song the band wrote while still in the old group, mere months before establishing Forcentury, and it is therefore in many ways the first real Forcentury track. It's heavy, upbeat, melodic and terribly catchy.

-Who are your musical influences?

Our musical sources of inspiration range far. We listen to metal in all its forms, rock, pop, classical, and jazz. But when people ask for band names, we do tend to claim kinship with progressive power metal acts such as Pagan’s Mind, Symphony X and Kamelot. Expect our next album to explore new territory. The songs we are writing now are a bit more proggy and heavy and less in the vein of traditional power metal than the songs you are hearing on Vanguard.

-How you would describe your live show?

Energetic, entertaining, invigourating, plenty of interaction with the audience and tons of fun!

-What is the club scene like in your area?

Small - really small. Even though this is the Danish capital, there is only one real rock/metal club, and it's struggling to remain standing. Gigs and venues are generally few and far between, and money is nowhere to be seen. Metal music on the other hand is very much alive, and even though the scene in Denmark may not be the most widely known, there is an enormous amount of talent and great bands in pretty much all genres.

-Tell us about one or some of your favorite shows that you have played so far in your career?

Disregarding the (dreadful) sound and the cramped stage, playing in the belly of an old german freighter ship last summer was a cool experience. It is probably the most metal (pun intended) place imaginable to play a show, and the strippers on stage didn't make matters worse.

-What do you hope to accomplish in the next year?

A whole lot of gigs would be nice. As mentioned before, jobs are hard to come by and don't pay much, but we are more than ready to hit the stages. Also, we might begin production on the second album within a year or so. We are composing our asses off at the moment, and it's truly killer material. Can't wait to play it live!

-Any great unsigned bands in your area that your would like to mention?

We have some very good friends in Black Succubi - check them out!


-If someone asked why should I buy your album then what would be your response?

Because we mean business! and our music is melodic, fast and heavy. Our lyrics contain great stories with messages and meaning in them.

-What are some of your favorite albums of 2010 so far?

To pick a few: Gamma Ray - To the Metal, Pretty Maids - Pandemonium, Stratovarious - Polaris, Fear Factory - Mechanize, Ihsahn - After

-Pick the band you prefer out of each of the following pairs and tell why prefer them.

Gamma Ray or Helloween - Helloween, they are a big inspiration to making music. They are heavy and melodic, and one of the first power metal bands ever.

Hammerfall or Primal Fear - Hammerfall was the band that inspired Marc to play power metal, and you can tell..!

Iron Maiden or Judas Priest - Iron maiden, maybe the biggest inspiration to our songwriting on Vanguard.

-Anything else that you want to say about your band, your music or anything else?
Buy our album! The more albums we sell, the better chances we probably have for finding a fitting record label to help us release our next album.
You can find links to where to buy Vanguard on our webpages. The songs can be bought as cd's or as download. And if the readers would like to check us out, go to
www.myspace.com/forcentury or our Facebook page (Search word: Forcentury). We update them all frequently.
Finally: heads up to our promoter Marjo Verdooren at Metal Revelation.
Stay metal, see you out there!! Metal will save the world. Cheers FORCENTURY....

Here is my review of Forcentury's Vanguard from a few month's ago.

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Thursday, June 03, 2010

What's coming up?

Work has been much busier than I wish it was, but this is always a busy time at my work. Between that and a sick kid I have been limited in how much time I can spend on writing. Still hope to have a Canvas Solaris review and a Forcentury interview up this week. Past that I'll have reviews of the latest from Kani, Jumping Jack and Blood of the black owl. Also I'll have a Clash of the album covers or two and Battle of the bands. Possibly even Lesser of two evils if I get to it. I have two "joke bands" who both annoyed the crap out of me in mind for that segment. This week I listened to a lot of retro-thrash and realizing that some were dull as can be and a few were quite good. Also I have absorbing some Atomic Rooster and the above mentioned Canvas Solaris.
Between late 2007 and the end of 2008 I did about 110-120 e-mail interviews. Then I got burnt out on them and did maybe 10 in 2009. The Forcentury interview this week will be my first of 2010. I believe that I finally feel like doing some again. So I have interviews lined up with Lich King, Methusalem and Invection. Now all I have to do is write up the questions. My questions are not always that creative, but I have gotten some great responses in the past so we'll see how they go.
***Have a great week.

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Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Retro/old-school/throwback metal-views and opinions


Every musical style seems to come back in fashion at some point and in various forms. It seems to has happened a great in hard rock and metal over the last decade. Whether it's thrash, glam, death or classic metal there seem to be plenty of bands that have popped that play these styles similar to the way they were played back in the 1980's to early 90's. Certainly there are bands who build on that sound, brought some ideas of their own and maybe added some more modern ideas. There are other bands whose mission seems to be to relive the look and sound of bands from two plus decades again. I loved metal back then and still do, but it's hard to take younger bands whose total goal seems to be to sound just like it was 1985. If it's done right and it's a debut then I might be able to take it. However I always have the hope that this is a starting point and that the band will work to bring in their own ideas the next time around. If they come back sounding like it 1986 on album #2 then I tend to be less optimistic that they do anything other than live in the past. Now that may sound hypocritical for me to given the name of my blog. Still I stand by that view. Now I do think a high energy level can help a band's approach even if the music is all too familiar as is the case with Enforcer's latest effort "Diamonds". I normally judge these bands like all others in a case by case basis. However I have read reviews from both sides. Some reviewers hear these bands and embrace them because it's the style they love while others roll their eyes when they hear bands who stick to this style. While I often claim these bands lack originality I have been told by defenders of these bands that being good means more than being original. I think lacking in ideas can count against a band. While I liked how Motley Crue sounded in 1983 or how Slayer sounded in 1986 that doesn't mean I want to hear a band popping now sound just like them. Then again that may just be me. Feel free to chime in, add on or tell me off.

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