Black Temple had my attention prior to even hearing one note of their music. There were several variables as to why they impressed me. The first being that they were declared the “most violent and energetic live act in Sweden.” I mean how impressive is that? I’m sure that captures the attention of most every metalhead. It’s been mentioned that the band has probably trashed more instruments and amplifiers than they can afford. Second, they were the first band being signed to the label Razzia Notes. One of the cool things about the new label is that it’s owned by Anders Fridén lead singer of the Gothenburg metal legends In Flames. Razzia also has a collaboration with Century Media as well so they will be distributing this album and possibly future albums. Anders himself is quoted with saying “”First time I heard BLACK TEMPLE, I freaked and I said to myself, ‘I gotta work with these guys somehow.” The trio has been together since 2010 and have a variety of influences which may contribute to their unique sound. Continue reading →
Over the past several years we have seen the formation of super groups more often. Artists coming together creating an all star team of sorts and releasing material. Now we have a super duo. Jason Shi comes to us from the North Carolina based rock band ASG. They last released “Blood Drive” in 2013. We have been fortunate enough to catch ASG live on two occasions. Jason who also plays guitar has a clean singing voice that sounds just as pitch perfect in person as it does on the recordings. He brings to the table an amazing array of vocal tones that helps build a truly inspiring sound. The other all star in the duo is Johnny Collins from Thunderlip who also hails from the Tarheel State. They recently released Sunday Driving in January of this year (2015). The band has more of speed punk vibe, but has other elements that draws interest from outside the genre. Johnny’s drumming in the band is a staple of their sound and what really gives them that fast paced vibrant sound.
Brazilian death metal masterminds Krisiun have emerged again to unleash some brutality on the masses. Set for worldwide release on August 7th, 2015 via, Century Media Records, “Forged In Fury” will please any death metal fan. The album was produced by Erik Rutan and features cover artwork by renowned artist Joe Petagno who has worked with Motorhead, Marduk and Vader in the past. Continue reading →
The band SpaceMetal have released their debut album and it is pretty far out. After getting an earful of what they have to offer you may think they are from a planet far far away. However, they are indeed from planet earth and yet another product to come from the great state of Louisiana. The self titled debut has some space themed lyrics but the song that first garnered my attention was “Witness to the Witch”. The song with very meaningful earthbound lyrics can connect with most anyone. It’s one of those songs that make you want to take a long drive. They really champion the retro rock sound, with a dash of doom mixed in as well. The riffs come tearing at you in warp speed. It sounds like the band was locked into a time capsule in 1973 and is just now being opened. The retro sound has been making a huge comeback with lots of bands, but the sound Spacemetal achieve is really what everyone is after. The album was recorded in a 1970s analog recording studio, so that can be attributed to the sound somewhat. Singer Travis Acosta has this attention grabbing voice, it keeps lingering in your ear and the melodies are suddenly rolling off your tongue and before you realize it you are singing along. The guitar players John Maracichin and Chris Trentecosta are bound to have bloody fingers by the way the riffs ring out through this album. “The Millipede” starts out with this dominating doom stomp type sound and then the guitars chime in and take over. It has all the ingredients for a classic rock song. Of course the guitars and vocals are up front but the songs would sound completely incomplete without the backbeat of the bass and drums. In songs like “Terra Cat” the drummer Chris Kain is the most integral part of what makes the song have this pace setting groove. The bass lines aren’t without notice either, those thick low tones laid down by Rob Norton help the guitar work stand out even more.
Spacemetal is a band that could and should become a household name. The debut album is independently released and I’m sure they will soon be having labels beating down their doors. There is a demand for the great tunes they provide and hopefully we will be able to see them out on the road soon as they will be gathering fans all over this planet and others as well. The album was released April 2nd and while we wish we had heard it sooner we are now wishing they will go into hyper speed and have another album completed soon. You can pick up this album for $6 from the bandcamp page they have set up (Link Below). The album is a through and through album that has a tremendous re-listen value, pick it up today.
Doom and sludge music usually has ties to the South. Something about our lifestyle and relaxed slow paced lives always churned out some of the slowest sludge around. There is a new destination in sludge. Pateros, Philippines is the home of sludge masters Hateure. The band actually started out as a progressive style metal band in 2007. They Released two albums in that vein of music (Makabagong Anyo ng Galit, 2010 and A Lustrous Danseur, 2013). It wasn’t long after that the band started to morph and change their sound. Eventually evolving into a doom/sludge/post metal band. They have released their new EP on July 13th, 2015 called “Body and Soil” and are in the process of finishing a full length album to release by the end of the year or early 2016. The EP currently out is 3 tracks, but it is more than enough music to let you know the direction this band is headed. Let me go ahead and tell you now that these guys aren’t playing around, they have found their true sound with sludge/doom and they will soon be climbing to the top of every metalheads favorite bands. The EP was mixed and mastered by guitarist Ronnel Vivo. The first track of the EP is an instrumental. I may be a little impatient but I couldn’t wait for the vocals to chime in even though the instrumental song and title track “Body & Soil” really is true to the sludge sound we all know. Track 2 “Reptilian Blues” is where we really get to business. The song spanning almost 12 glorious minutes is like music from a demented song bird to my ears. (That is a compliment by the way). The guitar work starts the song and these deep chords bellow out so low I can feel the vibrations in my chest. Suddenly we hear the might roar of singer Earl Palma and it was well worth the wait. He holds his own when it comes to comparing him to other sludge vocal legends. The guitar work is a perfect example of sludge, but it also has these groove based tones in it as well giving the track a feel that is truly the Hateure sound. One thing that is surprising is the sound they are able to get with just the one guitarist. The bassist Genesis Trinidad helps set pace in tandem with the solid rhythmic drum beats by Ronaldo Vivo Jr. The band as a whole is a group of musicians that have an amazing chemistry together. The EP is a great teaser for what we can expect in a full length. Anyone that even remotely likes Sludge or doom needs to give these guys a listen because you will become a fan instantly.
Artwork by Ronaldo S. Vivo Jr.
Body & Soil Tracklisting:
1 – Body & Soil
2 – Reptilian Blues
3 – Koleoptera
The namesake of the catchy hard rockin’ riff filled band Lynch Mob comes from none other than Dokken guitarist George Lynch. The band is releasing the new album entitled “Rebel” on August 21st via Frontier Music. You also have Oni Logan at the helm with his powerful vocal style that has become the voice of Lynch Mob. George has made several appearances on Vh1 Classic’s That Metal Show as a guest musician. He wowed the audience with his guitar work, which helped him attain a new generation of fans. The rest of the band is rounded out with Jeff Pilson (ex-Dokken, Foreigner, Dio) on bass and Brian Tichy (ex-Whitesnake, Ozzy Osbourne) on drums.
“Rebel” track listing:
01. Automatic Fix
02. Between The Truth And A Lie
05. Pine Tree Avenue
06. Jelly Roll
07. Dirty Money
08. The Hollow Queen
09. The Ledge
10. Kingdon Of Slaves
George Lynch of course spent a lot of time in hair metal bands throughout the 80’s. There may be some expectations for this album to have some hair metal elements. Let me tell you now, this is not a hair metal album. This album through and through is a melodic hard rock masterpiece. The track ” Testify” will put you into a groove induced coma. The lyrics can hit home with most anyone and will have you singing along instantly. One of the standout tracks on the album is “Pine Tree Avenue”. This track is a blues crazed fast paced anthem. Oni sings ” when we lit the fuse” and it breaks into the riff and cymbal crashes, then later slows down the pace just to hear George tickle the strings with some intricate guitar work. Moving on to the song “Jelly Roll”, it has this melodic harmony that makes the hair stand up on your arms and reminds you of Alice In Chains. All the fat has been trimmed from this song, its the purest form of what Lynch Mob dominate at; hard nosed rock n roll.
Lynch Mob is currently on tour, make sure to go see them on the road. We will be seeing them in the great mountain town of Whitesburg, Kentucky on August 7th with Pikeville, Kentucky’s hometown metal heroes in Downtrend. (www.downtrendmetal.com).
They also new song “War” today which is available for streaming.
You can keep up with everything Lynch Mob at the following links:
Savi0r was a project created and founded by Adam V. Jones in 1997. He has since then added two other great musicians into the mix and formed this superior trio. The sound they have is like a melting pot of genres, just like city they hail from Los Angeles. The new three track EP “Invulnerability” was released in April. It brings together so many different elements, yet it works so well together. The album has an overall industrial feel musically that would remind you of Nine Inch Nails or Rammestein. The haunting yet melodic vocals by Adam Jones are what melds everything together. The song “Interlopers” starts out and just screams metal in your face, and before you realize it you are singing along to the song. Just like that throwback jam from the 80’s you like so much this song quickly has you head banging and moving around. The vocals change some on this track back and forth. He brings a sense of grit to his tone that brings out the metal edge in the song and then right back to those melodic sing along like lyrics. A video was just released for the track “Lead” which showcases some dark and eerie imagery which go hand in hand with the song. “Lead” is the stand out track on the EP, but the others aren’t very far behind. Each song features a somewhat different tone. Elements from metal, industrial, techno, alternative, synth, and black metal all seem to slither their way into each song. If you are a fan of Orgy or Skinny Puppy there is no doubt you will love this band and this EP, but they truly include something for everyone.
Ash of Cedars is a new band in a sense, based out of the Natural State; Arkansas. The members of this band are by no means new to the scene. They have a self-titled release that will only come in two mediums. Cassette tape and digital download. The sound they create in this debut release is an ambiance of sounds. The only way to describe it is “gadarene”. If you are wondering it means to engage in a headlong or potentially disastrous rush to do something. As each track plays through it gives you this overwhelming need to break things. At times like in the track “Anti Life Venom” the vocals move to the background and the music takes the center stage, and then they change positions letting the gut wrenching screams of CT aka Chris Terry whom you may know as the voice of Rwake. Surprisingly the next song “I’m Not Done” slows things down to almost a stand still. It’s the song that would be playing at a crusty gothic black metal prom. The instruments combine and make this singular orchestrated piece that you could really refer to as a black metal ballad. The band is comprised of veterans of metal professionals. Guitarist Dustin Weedle was in the Little Rock based band Snakedriver. Jeremy “Skullcrusher” Partin was the bassist for the amazing must hear death metal outfit Vore that celebrated their 20 year anniversary last year. Drummer Tino LoSicco is non-Arkansas native hailing from Memphis, TN and comes from the band Epoch of Unlight where his drumming is very well showcased. Of course then you have CT and Jeff Morgan of Rwake.
The album has 5 tracks in total, 3 on side A and 2 on side B if you happen to pick up the cassette. “Mother Satan Bright” is the eerie B side track that really has this racing rhythmic tone that tranquilizes you. The 5 tracks are raw, unfiltered just as they should be. The little hints of feedback and drone noise just add to everything that you will come to know by Ash of Cedars. The album is being released by Handshake Inc, who is amazing and has a great love for underground music. The digital release of the album is available July 4th, and the cassette will ship around July 15th if you chose to go the route. Make sure to pick a copy up and support hard working musicians. Order here!
Once you put this album on play you will automatically assume it is one of the great Florida death metal pioneers, however this is the new Jungle Rot album “Order Shall Prevail”. Since 1994 the band has slowly been climbing to the top of the food chain in the death metal world. This album solidifies their place at the top. The bands 9th studio album brings to you the teeth grinding, hard hitting violence that the fans have grown to expect. From the moment you hit play the brutality begins, the guitars and machine gun like drums welcome you to the album in the opening track “Doomsday”. Speeding through the song as singer Dave Matrise’s vocals are the cure all to any metal head’s needs. The album also features Brazilian icon Max Cavalera (Soulfly, Cavalera Conspiracy, Ex-Seplutura) on the track “Fight Where You Stand”. Everything comes together in a perfect storm like assault and Max’s vocals fit into the song like a glove. The tone of the album is set, and the brutality continues. The song entitled “Trench Tactics” brings with it these old school shrieking guitar parts that make it one of our favorites. The song changes pace several times, slowing down and then the fierce drum beat leading it back into a faster pace. From start to finish this record is exactly what Jungle Rot fans expect from them, and will help them earn a slew of new fans as they tour the U.S. Catch them on the Rockstar Mayhem tour and feel their wrath in the flesh.
01 – “Doomsday”
02 – “Paralyzed Prey”
03 – “Blood Revenge”
04 – “Fight Where You Stand” (Featuring Max Cavalera of Soulfly, Cavalera Conspiracy)
05 – “Order Shall Prevail”
06 – “The Dread Pestilence”
07 – “I Cast The First Stone”
08 – “E.F.K.”
09 – “Trench Tactics”
10 – “Nuclear Superiority”
Stockholm, Sweden has always been home to an amazing array of bands over the years and standing out in the crowd there has become increasingly hard. Sideburn is one of those standouts, and has been since Morgan Zocek helped form the band in 1997. The style they play brings you back to that old school classic rock sound with some blues and a pinch of doom. The new album “Evil or Divine” does not disappoint. Released May 22, 2015 it has become a favorite of ours and often does not leave the playlist or cd player. The opening track “Masters and Slaves” starts out the album with some amazing retro guitar work and eases you into the vocal style of singer and guitarist Dimitri Keiski. . Guitar solos by founding member Morgan Zocek seem like they are never going to end. The guitars are just the beginning of the unblemished musical perfection that they bring to this album. The next track is where Dimitri really brings out his full potential and range in “Sea of Sins” hits both highs and lows and takes the listener on this musical journey. The crashing of the cymbals and beat of the drums by Fredrik Haake clears a path for everything else to chime in. Musically Sideburn has an amazing progressive style with various hints of other genres, and when you add the vocals it just brings in that retro feel that fits perfectly like an old pair of pants. With a song title like “The Day the Sun Died” you know that it will summon the darkness and doom that lives inside a black heart. Things are slowed down and everything hangs on each note. The deep tone of the bass riffs by Martin Karlsson bellow out and help steer the song in the right direction. The chorus comes through like a flawless symphony of sounds, and lurks around from the ear to the tip of your tongue and has you singing along. The album is the soundtrack to the journey it takes you through while listening. The sound Sideburn has is not watered down, and needs to be consumed by all.
Photo taken by Jonte Strömberg
Edited by Morgan Zocek