KATATONIA, CASPIAN, UNCURED Take Over Washington, D.C. [Photo Gallery]

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Katatonia

Last Thursday night I found myself doing something I absolutely despise, taking the horrid DC metro rail, to do something I dearly love, enjoying live music. Katatonia, was opening the North American tour in support of their album ‘The Fall of Hearts’ at the 9:30 Club in Washington D.C. A small venue with a prominent stage with excellent lighting and sound system, many consider 9:30 Club to be the heart and soul of the music scene in Washington D.C. And I have never been to this iconic venue in our nations capital, despite having lived in the area for multiple years. This, combined with the excitement of seeing Katatonia live for the first time, my excitement was palpable. Still, I had little idea how good a night this was going to be. Katatonia is one of the finest heavy metal bands to have emerged from Sweden, and their ten studio albums bear testimony to that. The last album ‘The Fall of Hearts’ was released mid last year, which garnered excellent reviews from fans and critics alike. On this North American leg, they are supported by Caspian and Uncured.

Uncured

The first band of the night was Uncured, which I was not very familiar with, so them taking the stage was when I really discovered their music. It has been a long time since I have been this utterly impressed by a new band with only a debut album. And how often do you see a progressive metal band with two vocalists unleashing harsh vocals with intense yet melodic riffs ? The vocals were shared nearly equally by the two guitar wielding vocalists on more than one song. The young lads with their youthful energy, technical prowess behind their instruments and blistering speed set the stage on fire. Listen to the riffs in the later part of the song “Opium Den” and tell me if it does not remind you of Liquid Tension Experiment. The lads totally had totally earned the rousing applause they got once they were done with their set. This is one band that I earmark for nothing but stellar things in future and will certainly be keeping a close watch on.

Caspian

Caspian was the second band of the night, a largely instrumental band with fast riffs, yet they can sound melancholic at times, something that not too many bands can lay a claim to. I had no idea they had such a fan following in the D.C. metro area, the crowd erupted as soon as they took the stage. The imperious drumming and the excellent guitar play lays the basis for the six member strong band. The rapidly changing stage lighting in sync with the fast yet melodic guitar play contributed to this spellbinding show. I can’t really do justice to their musicianship on the show by trying to explain it in words, one needs to see them out live. If you are not familiar with their music, check them out and get ready to be captivated.

Katatonia

Katatonia was one of the first Swedish metal bands I discovered. Over the years Katatonia has progressed to be more melodic from the harsh vocals of the early days. Opening the set with the track “Last Song Before We Fade”, the band burst in to intense guitar play and luscious rhythms. The following tracks “Criminals”, a song from the album ‘Viva Emptiness’, and “Serein”, a standout track from the latest album, kept the crowd really going. The delivery of Jonas Renske was flawless, the guitar work and drumming impeccable and overall the band treated the crowd to an album quality performance. The graceful interaction with the crowd only enhanced the experience of this fabulous night. I won’t bother going in to discuss the performance of each song of the nineteen songs long set, you are better off attending the show than trying to experience it through my words. This is one tour that you don’t want to miss, especially if you are a fan of melodic or progressive metal. If you have a chance to see them on this tour, which has just started, don’t miss it!

Follow the bands online: Katatonia, Caspian, Uncured!

Review: TRITA – S/T EP [STREAM]

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Minneapolis, Minnesota prog rockers TRITA have recently released a brand new self-titled EP. The three piece band claims they have ripped out elements of various bands who have inspired them and piece them together cohesively into their own signature sound. The band also recently embarked on a 2 week national tour in support of the recent EP. The EP was recorded by Adam Tucker (Bastard Saint, Hate Beast, Ambassador Gun) at Signature Tone Recording in Minneapolis. This 3 track EP is short, but sweet, and just makes the anticipation for an LP even greater. Continue reading

DARKSHIP Have Unleashed A New Music Video For ‘II Hearts’!

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Brazil’s melodic prog power metallers DARKSHIP have unleashed a new music video “II Hearts” in support of their debut album ‘We Are Lost’ released earlier this year. This is their 2nd video from the album. You can watch their video for ‘Frozen Feelings’ here. The album features ten songs with album artwork done by artist Carlos Fides of Artside Studio (Evergrey, Noturnall, Shaman, Almah). The album is the first part of the band’s concept trilogy based on a fictional story about two people in love who are controlled by a force called “Darkship”. The video was directed by Douglas Castilhos Coutinho.  Continue reading

REAPTER Release Lyric Video For “Useless”!

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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. 

State of the Art: Onward We March [EP Streaming]

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

This month’s State is Texas!

The Dallas based band Onward We March has been using a do it yourself approach since their formation back in 2008. The five member group of Texans have a heavy progressive sound that originally started as a simply jam session in a living room that morphed into something so much more. The band released their debut album “The Golden Vine” in January of 2011 and that was just the beginning. Continue reading

Review: God Am – S/T EP

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On the outskirts of Indianapolis, Indiana you will find one of the most appealing bands I have heard in some time. The band God Am formed in 2012 and have been putting in some major hours to hone their sound and get exactly where they want to be. The band released their debut EP on May 16th. The group have made waves throughout the region in Indiana and this EP is sure to turn those small waves into more of a tidal wave. After just finishing this EP the band is already hard at work a follow up to this debut and have 3 songs in the books written already. They will soon begin touring Indiana and surrounding areas and we can only hope a venue in our area will be lucky enough to book them. We had the honor of checking out the debut and are sure you will be just as impressed as we were. Continue reading