State of the Art: War Within

*This is part of our State Of The Art series, showcasing bands every Monday from the featured State*

This month’s State is Tennessee!

Last week for our State of the Art: Tennessee. Yet another state that has an extremely active Metal scene that hosts a plethora of talented artists in a countless number of killer bands. Big touring bands like Whitechapel, Skillet, Red, Tora Tora, Straight Line Stitch and Saliva all call Tennessee home as do hundreds, if not thousands bands that are kicking and screaming to promote themselves above the chaff. This is a huge reason that I love this series. Getting a deserving band in the spotlight helps assure that these artists continue playing what we like and continues to set the foundation for the next generation of rockers to pull themselves up with. This week I am proud to introduce you to War Within from Nashville, if you have not already heard of these Tennessee heavies before…

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Review/Stream: AITTALA – ‘American Nightmare’

On December 6th, 2016, Aittala unleashed their 4th full length LP: ‘American Nightmare’. The band was formed by Eric Aittala in 1992 in Raleigh, North Carolina and released a short EP, but then remained dormant for many years. After a long break, the project was brought back when Aittala released their first full length album in 2009, ‘Bed of Thorns’. The band went on to release two more LPs in 2011 and in 2014 (‘Haunt Your Flesh’ and ‘Effigy’). After various lineup changes, there has been a stable, strong lineup consisting of Eric Aittala on the lead guitar and vocals, Gary Smith on drums, and Andrew Sullivan on the bass. The new album was recorded at Incognito Studios, Raleigh NC. It was mixed and mastered by Mike Schaefer at Schaefer Sound Productions. Continue reading

Editor’s 25 Best Albums Of 2016!

It’s an incredibly hard task to narrow down all the amazing albums that released in 2016 to a short list of 25. This year seen the reunion of some amazing acts and we lost several iconic musicians. My personal top 25 albums of the year not only includes veteran acts that you are probably familiar with, but also brand new bands or lesser known bands that blew me away with their sound. There are just some bands that have a way of capturing you moments into the first track. There are several other albums I wish I could have included in this list, but without further ado here is my top 25 albums of 2016:    Continue reading

Review: FORESTERR – ‘The Town Dies Screaming’

Foresterr is a noise rock band from Long Island, New York. Formed in 2013, Foresterr is composed of Danny Meigel (Guitar, Vocals), Kevin Sangalang (Drums, percussion) and Geoff Gader (Bass, Vocals). The band’s music is characterized by its unconventional song structure, changes in style, angular guitar riffs & frenzied stage performance that allow it to stand on its own amongst their contemporaries. Foresterr have released 3 EPs this far in their career. The band has just completed their upcoming full-length, ‘The Town Dies Screaming’ produced by Jay Maas (SOMOS, Citizen, State Champs, Title Fight) formerly of Defeater. It was recorded at Getaway Recording in Massachusetts The album is set to release January 27, 2017. Continue reading

Show Review of Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s “The Ghosts of Christmas Eve” Tour

TransSiberian Orchestra 2016:

Al Pitrelli – Guitar

Andrew Ross – Vocals

Angus Clark – Guitar

April Berry – Guitar

Asha Mevlana – Strings

Autumn Guzzardi – Vocals

Ava Davis – Vocals

Bart Satto – Vocals

Bryan Hicks – Storyteller

Chloe Lowery – Vocals

Chris Caffery – Guitar

Dave Z – Bass

Derek Wieland – Keyboards

Dustin Brayley – Vocals

Babriela Guncikova – Vocals

Georgia Napolitano – Vocals

Jane Nangini – Keyboards

Jeff Plate – Drums

Jeff Scott Soto – Vocals

Jodi Katz – Vocals

John Brink – Vocals

John Lee Middleton – Bass

John O. Reilly – Drums

Kayla Reeves – Vocals

Lisa Lavie – Vocals

Mee Eun Kim – Keyboards

Natalya Rose Piette – Vocals

Paul O’Neill – founder/guitar

Philip Brandon – Storyteller

Rob Evan – Vocals

Robin Borneman – Vocals

Roddy Chong – Strings

Russell Allen – Vocals

Vitalij Kuprij – Keyboards

Tran-Siberian Orchestra is the brainchild brought to fruition by the genius of writer/guitarist/producer/etc. extraordinaire Paul O’Neill. Growing up in New York City, O’Neill was exposed to everything ranging from Broadway musicals, to Motown to singer-songwriter greats like Jim Croce and Harry Chapin. As he got older, Paul began playing guitar in the touring band for Jesus Christ Superstar and Hair before being brought on with the management company, LeberKrebs in the later portion of the 1970’s. With clients such as Aerosmith, Ted Nugent, AC/CD, Def Leppard, The Scorpians, The New York Dolls and a plethora of other A-List bands, O’Neill’s influences and influence gained a huge market share, putting him at the top of the promotional game. After a stint as a major concert promoter in Japan during the 1980’s, he returned to the States to write and produce full-time.

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SEPULTURA Unveil Music Video For “Phantom Self”!

Brazilian heavy metal icons, SEPULTURA, will unleash their upcoming studio album, ‘Machine Messiah’, on January 13th through Nuclear Blast. With their new music video “Phantom Self” they provide another thrilling look into their 14th studio release and deliver haunting images and sociocultural criticism in this clip directed by Mauricio Eca. A few weeks ago, the band has already released the lyric video of their first digital single, “I Am The Enemy”. Check it out here. The album was produced by the band and Jens Borgen (Soilwork, Opeth, Katatonia, Amon Amarth) of Fascination Street Studios in Orebro, Sweden. The stunning cover artwork for ‘Machine Messiah’ was created by Filipino artist Camille Della Rosa.  Continue reading

REAPTER Release Lyric Video For “Useless”!

Italian thrash metal / prog metal band REAPTER released new lyric video for the song “Useless”! The song is from their recent album ‘Cymatics’ which was released on September, 23th 2016 via Revalve Records. The band was formed in 2005 and has toured along side acts such as Testament, Dark Funeral and Sadist. ‘Cymatics’ is the follow up to the bands critically acclaimed debut album ‘M.I.N.D.’ which was released in 2013. “Cymatics” is born from several factors: lyrics talk about the daily life in order to plunge the listener in a specific situation. Each song is a different situation with the individual focused on it. Furthermore, the band says “we wanted to use the 432Hz frequency on the instruments tuning, in order to produce a sound which can be found in nature.” The band not only combines elements of thrash and prog but you can also hear moments of classic heavy metal inspiration as well. REAPTER also tells captivating stories within their music, which you can see a great example of in their new lyric video below.

Follow REAPTER on Facebook here. 

RE-ARMED Release Video For “Lullaby of Obedience”

Finnish melodic death/thrash metallers RE-ARMED have released an official video for “Lullaby of Obedience,” a track from new album ‘The Era of Precarity’. The song has a harsh yet melodic feel that is reminiscent of Swedish speed metal. The video was filmed with a GoPro and the clips therein are taken from “The Era of Precarity” tour. RE-ARMED released ‘The Era of Precarity’ worldwide on September 30 via Finland’s Saarni Records. The physical core of the album is packed into a stylish digipak, which is made from ecological materials. The enviromentally conscious band has pledged to donate 50 cents from the sale of every copy to Karma Ry (organisation), which supports elder people and young adults in band’s hometown area with their activities to prevent disenfranchisement. You can pick up a copy of the album here and not only enjoy their music but help those in need.  Continue reading

State of the Art: Tennessee – Noisecult

*This is part of our State Of The Art series, showcasing bands every Monday from the featured State*

This month’s State is Tennessee!

Nashville, Tennessee’s Noisecult came to fruition in 2004 by guitarist/vocalist Don Carr and vocalist Bo Heyward who had been working together on many musical projects since 1993. Sharing a love for the 1970’s Hard Rock and underground Metal infused with Punk and “classic dark wall of sound pioneered by Black Sabbath”, Carr and Heyward started their dream project after a two year hiatus from working together. One short year later, their first full length album “End of Days” was released and Noisecult played a relentless number of shows to get their creation to the public.

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Review: Exploding Head Syndrome ‘World Crashes Down’

After initially hearing Exploding Head Syndrome I found myself wondering how in the hell I haven’t heard this band yet. They formed back in 2010 when the childhood friends got the idea to start a punk band. They thought the idea of starting a punk band in their thirties was kind of ridiculous, but nevertheless Exploding Head Syndrome was formed. I’m very happy the band did form as well. The name for the band came about when one of the members was browsing the web and found a weird sounding disease called Exploding Head Syndrome. The band found the name to fitting for the kind of music they wanted to play. The band released their self titled debut in 2011 on Ampmanden Records. The band went on to release two albums in 2013 which includes ‘Disciples of Reason’ which received rave reviews. Exploding Head Syndrome was hailed as “one of the most exciting new Norwegian bands” by Norway’s leading radio show for hard-rock music. In the summer of 2015 tragedy hit EHS when bassist Bjørnar died. The band after some time to mourn their comrade auditioned bassists and soldiered on. The band signed a record deal with Wormhole Death Records and went on to record their next album, ‘World Crashes Down’, at Mathlab Recording Studio in Montale, Italy over three weeks in June and July 2016. In August the record was finished, and was released worldwide on November 4. The album remains true to the bands punk roots but incorporates a lot of hardcore influence as well as some heavy groove rock vibes.  Continue reading