Women’s Month: Mercedes Lander of KITTIE / WHITE SWAN



March is National Women’s Month, and we have decided to celebrate some our favorite women in metal. Every Saturday during March we will honor some of the most respected women in the metal and hard rock world.


It’s been twenty years since Mercedes Lander started the Canadian metal band Kittie (with sister Morgan and original bandmates Fallon Bowman and Tanya Candler) in London, Ontario. They brought one of the heaviest and most fierce acts we had seen to date, and this is for all bands not just girl bands. There was a thing or two the guys could have learned from the harsh anguish they brought to their music, and I’m sure plenty of their male counterparts took notes and learned from Kittie’s quick rise to stardom in the metal world. Their debut album ‘Spit’ was what got everything started in 2000. The album still to this day is highly regarded as one of the best metal albums of that era. ‘Spit’ was was certified gold by the RIAA and sold at least 600,000 copies in the United States. Keep in mind when ‘Spit’ was recorded the members of the band were only 15-18 years of age. Kittie went on to release their sophomore record ‘Oracle’ in 2001. It was also in 2001 that guitarist and backing vocalist Fallon Bowman left the band. Her infamous growls on the song “Brackish” instantly made her a fan favorite. They followed ‘Oracle’ with the release of ‘Until the End’ in 2004. Continue reading

Elijah Witt (CANE HILL) “Nickelback Is A Hit Machine”


Cane Hill formed in 2011 in New Orleans. They took their time finding their sound and released their self titled debut in 2015, then released their first full length in 2016 titled ‘Smile’. This is the album that truly got fans to open their eyes. The band doesn’t just impress in the studio either. We had the opportunity to see Cane Hill at 2017’s Chicago Open Air and their performance was one of the most dominating of the weekend, which is saying a lot considering the lineup was packed with heavy metal icons like Slayer, Behemoth, Lamb Of God and Body Count. The band has announce they were releasing a new album titled ‘Too Far Gone’ in 2018. Everyone was excited for the album, but when it dropped they quickly brought on a fire storm of new bands. ‘Too Far Gone’ has been one of the most talked about albums this year. Elijah Witt stated about the album “A lot of these songs reference a time in our lives when we were really headstrong about what we were doing as far as drugs were concerned and believing we were invincible. It took this shift as we realized we were losing ourselves. I think it’s lucky we recognized that before it became a problem. We definitely went a little bit past our limit, and we’re coming to terms with those mistakes. We went too far gone with everything. The title encapsulates the entire era.” They are the fresh meat in the nu-metal genre and they are proving that newer bands can crank out material that can compete with the elder nu-metal that are still relevant today like Korn, Limp Bizkit, Slipknot and Papa Roach. ‘Too Far Gone’ will likely be one of the best albums of the year for most people. The genre has only had a handful of bands still keeping the sound of the late 90’s and early 2000’s alive, but that has changed with Cane Hill turning heads and proving they can unleash an album that makes those veteran acts realize there is new competition in their genre.  Continue reading

DESERTFEST LONDON Artist Preview – Full Line-Up Included!

The UK’s premier independent festival Desertfest London returns over the May bank holiday (May 4th-6th) with what can only be described, as unquestionably it’s most biggest and broadest line-up yet!

Now in its 7th year, the festivities will take place across multiple venues in London’s Camden Town including the famous Underworld and breathtaking Roundhouse. With over 70 acts announced across the whole metal spectrum, together with the biggest names in sludge, doom and psych!

Not only that, as par tradition Desertfest will be holding their annual pre-festival party at The Black Heart on May 3rd featuring a full headline set by North Carolina’s A.S.G and London’s own Flash House as support! (Pre-festival tickets here)

Read below for full headliners and bands that are not to be missed! (Full weekend line-up follows article. Weekend and day tickets available here). Continue reading

Album Review: EARTHLESS – Black Heaven (Song Stream)



Black Heaven

Nuclear Blast Records

Release Date: March 16, 2018

It’s been more than four years since the last Earthless album, the mammoth double LP From the Ages, and to say things are a little different now would be an understatement. Since the 2005 release of their debut album Sonic Prayer, the San Diego power trio have built their reputation on a repertoire of expansive, instrumental psych-rock explorations, side-long, many-movement mindfucks that split the difference between Amon Düül II and Black Sabbath. Black Heaven, their latest effort (and first under the Nuclear Blast banner), is a leaner, meaner affair that’s way more James Gang than Flower Travellin’ Band. The songwriting and structures have been tightened up and whittled down (the longest song on Black Heaven is slightly less than nine minutes, which for Earthless is practically a pop single), based more on refined guitar riffs than semi-improvised rhythm section interplay and trimmed of a lot of hallucinogenic fat. Perhaps most jarring for longtime listeners will be the introduction of the human voice into the Earthless equation; four of Black Heaven’s six tracks feature guitarist Isaiah Mitchell stepping into the vocal spotlight. Doubters and worrywarts can relax and unclench, though; this is still Earthless through and through, plenty trippy, plenty heavy, and more than capable of levelling even the most hardened of psychic warriors.

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Album Review: DISASTROID – ‘Screen’ [Album Stream]

Recently this band came onto my radar after having their latest, September 2017 CD release essentially dropped into my lap by my editor here at Metal Nexus. Upon first listen, I was pleasantly surprised by their throwback, sludgey, stoner sound often reminiscent of Melvins and early Soundgarden. I’ve since given the album several more listens and each time discover more and more interesting nuances to enjoy. What stands out above all else with Disastroid’s ‘Screen’ is vibe. From front to back, this album emanates a heavy and relenting, chilled out, stoner vibe, while at times delving into well-placed moments of intense psychedelia. Like a VW bus hotboxed in a thick cloud of bong smoke, this record will envelope and intoxicate you as you succumb to its dark, dank, euphoric moods. Continue reading

Review: LAST LEGION – ‘Muspelheim’ [Video & Album Stream]


Merging massive dueling guitars and epic lyrics infused with Norse mythology, Last Legion melds technical melodic riffs with the primal aggression of Scandinavian metal. When the war horn sounds, these New World Vikings gather from the far corners of the earth. In 2013 the New York based band released their debut album ‘Edge Of The World’. That debut cemented that these New Yorkers will be a dominant force when it comes to the viking metal genre. Powerful riffs and gut wrenching vocals that any established band would proud of. Last Legion not only have Norse mythology lyrical themes but they blend technical death metal, and various other styles that really make the band unique. The band recently released their follow up album ‘Muspelheim’. The album was produced by Aady Pandit (Jotunheim). Vocalist Jason Ayala has said “We are always trying to top ourselves, so I have to believe that our magnum opus is yet to come. However, I will say that this album is a massive step forward, and we are incredibly proud of what we have created”.

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CHROMATIC POINT Pushes The Boundary Of Prog With New Music Video, “Clockwork”!

Macedonia? Anyone? Betcha didn’t know any bands from the land of the great Alexander from Macedon! Alright let me do the honours of shedding some light on you in introducing one of the most creative and intriguing bands from Europe. Headbangers! introducing the ever so vibrant, and one of my all time favourites, ethno progressive(yeah, this too!) band CHROMATIC POINT, from the Balkan land of Macedonia(FYROM). “Chromatic” as they sound both musically and visually, the band incorporates every sense of the word and just goes on to show the frantic and seemingly chaotic nature of it’s sonic virtuosity. Just like the rapidly changing “flight of the bumblebee”. See what I did there? Yup, that was your daily dose of classical music puns!

All right let’s stop beating around the bush and get to the point. So, this Balkan progressive powerhouse has just unleashed their brand new music video, “Clockwork” today, which the band says has been taken off their “next studio material“. Let’s get dissecting the new chops!

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World’s Loudest Month Spotlight: TURNSTILE

*Every Wednesday from now until Rock On The Range and Carolina Rebellion we will be showcasing an artist playing the festivals to help you get to know them a little better.  This week, we’re checking out Turnstile – a hardcore quintet from Baltimore, MD!*

The running theme so far for this year’s upcoming summer festivals is that May is going to be the loudest month of the year, and with some really unbelievable lineups that statement is sure to be true.  However, the loudest month of the year wouldn’t be complete without giving the hardcore kids something to move to!  Well fear not, ladies and gentlemen, and prepare to throw down with Turnstile at Rock on the Range and Carolina Rebellion!  With a fresh album release, ‘Time & Space’, these guys are primed to destroy the stage and throw one up for the hardcore scene. Continue reading

HARM’S WAY At “Gilman” In Berkeley, CA With QUEENSWAY, VEIN, & RINGWORM [Review & Photo Gallery]

Last Friday night (March 9th) I attended the Harm’s Way show at the Alternative Music Foundation in Berkeley, CA. The “Gilman,” as it is locally referred to because of its Gilman Street address, is a small, historical punk/hardcore venue that has hosted countless significant names in music for over the last thirty years. Groundbreaking and trendsetting acts that have gone on to receive huge notoriety or commercial success have roots that trace all the way back to early career performances there. Monumental names such as Green Day, The Offspring, AFI, Bad Religion, and Operation Ivy have all graced the Gilman stage at one time or another. Last Friday night, however, providing the metal-infused, adrenaline-fueled energy to lead today’s current generation of hardcore music was Chicago’s own Harm’s Way. Continue reading