Monday, July 30, 2018

interview: BLOOD OF THE WOLF

The following is an interview with Blood of the Wolf, an extreme metal band from Chicago, U.S.A. Earlier in the year this publication reviewed their 2018 album II: Campaign of Extermination. The review said:
In terms of extreme, Blood of the Wolf works with various strands of black, war, bestial and blackthrash metal, and they also incorporate melodic black metal for a potent album that supporters of the genre will find worthwhile. While some reviewers have paid a nod or a tip of the hat to the Chicago band’s second work, I view it as more important than simply a solid album for a couple of reasons.
Not to ruffle the feathers of some people, and not to pick a fight with anyone, but Wolf of the Blood are rightful inheritors in 2018 to carry the torch from where classic, young Angelcorpse, Dissection and Morbid Angel left off. One reason to be impressed with the album is the professionalism of the recording. They spent the effort that it takes to give fast extreme metal a proper sound, as much as it is possible within the confines of blazing modern metal and within the means of a band without the backing of a big record company.
Another reason is the band’s hunger to write music that respects the best of our traditions: proficient guitar work, strong riffs, dark melodies and a true love for skilled and precise guitar work in general; drumming that will make you bang your head; expressive vocals that are intense but also enunciated/delivered well. In addition, Blood of the Wolf seems to have thought a lot about what kind of vocals work with this music the best. They have a black metal mentality in general, but they do not want the amateurish gremlin screeching associated with homemade black metal rough demos; instead they choose the strong, aggressive vocals of traditional death metal, in line with bands like classic Morbid Angel and Vader.
They made the album as if their lives depended on it. Pound for pound, this album can go toe to toe with any extreme metal album this year that I have heard and approved. They may not be famous, but there is nothing small about their intentions on the album.
The band is not for the politically correct nor for the social justice warriors. The lyrics are concerned with war, dominance, power and subjugation, conquest, brutality and violence. The music of the band is as it is advertised by calling your band Blood of the Wolf.
More than enjoyable album, in my opinion, this work can withstand the critical ears of the selective fans looking for extreme metal inspired by fierce, fast and shredding black, thrash and death metal.
Now here is the interview with Blood of the Wolf.
Hi. Who is answering this interview?
This is Mike, the guitarist/vocalist of Blood of the Wolf.
How are things in Chicago for Blood of the Wolf?
2018 has been very good so far. We released “II: Campaign of Extermination” in April. We have played a handful of shows in Chicago and Milwaukee. We played with Avernus, Morta Skuld and Disiniter. We opened up for Kataklysm in Chicago for the record release show of “Meditations”. We are playing in August in Milwaukee with Prezir, Suffering Hour and Arra. In October we will be opening up for Carach Angren, Mors Principum Est and Wolfheart.
Do you have any news for shows in U.S. and abroad?
We have just played in Chicago and Milwaukee so far. We would love to play in other US cities and abroad if the offer is right.
Is the album selling online well within your expectations, in the U.S. and Europe? What about any other places?
The album sales online are about what we expect considering we are relatively new and we don’t have label support promoting us. Most buyers are American or European. I don’t think we’ve had any sales in Japan or South America. Interestingly, we sell physical copies of our albums just as well.
When someone buys your album, do you see that money or does someone else get to it before you? I have seen that services like Spotify generate basically no money for smaller bands.
Right now, our album is only available through Bandcamp. They take a percentage of the sales. Our albums are $5 each and we get $3.95. I’m glad we get anything, to be honest. You can probably download it for free quite easily. We haven’t used Spotify or iTunes or any other streaming services, but my guess is that you’re right, the bands probably see little to no return.
Are you finding that sales are helping to offset the cost of making the album?
Kind of. Any money helps. We do better with our t-shirts and hoodies than album sales. The band basically pays for itself. If there is profit, it’s not much. But that’s not why we do it.
Do you find good studios to record in Chicago? Do you have any experience?
Any good studio is going to have re-amping ability. For the last two albums, guitars and bass were re-amped. We could use our own gear of course, but that’s kind of an outdated approach. We all have some recording ability, but none of us are pros.
The pioneers of heavy metal in 1960s and 1970s often recorded music as performances, by a whole take. Now it is common to record bit by bit. How do you do it?
My preference is for whatever process will yield the best results. Right now, we do a mixture of whole song performances and recording by takes. I think a lot of it depends on the recording engineer’s style too and how they prefer to record bands. Back in the 60’s and 70’s you had old recording technology. Back then bands recorded that way because that’s what their technology allowed them to do. Our current recording technology allows us to do things differently, more easily and at home. For guitars I like to record riff by riff. Vocals I like to do as a performance, from the beginning to the end of the song. That’s my current preference.
When Blood of the Wolf began, what was the vision of what the music was going to be? You must make this music because in your region you must not hear too many bands playing extreme metal this way, correct?
I don’t think there was a vision first. There was just a collection of songs that became Blood of the Wolf songs. My approach to writing music is to just write the kind of songs I want to hear. There’s not really a vision, not at the beginning anyway. Now, five years down the road, there’s more of an approach to writing a Blood of the Wolf song, but not at the beginning. It’s true that not too many bands in Chicago sound like us, but that doesn’t really have any bearing on what we do. Again, I’m just writing the music I want to hear. My geographic location has nothing to do with that.
Your music is mostly fast, with blasting and rapid guitar work and drums. People might be surprised to find out, however, that your music has lots of melody. What is the role of melody in your music? What role does tremolo picking have in your music and melodies?
Yes, there is quite a bit of melody. That is quite intentional and I’m glad you noticed. I guess that’s where the black metal influence comes in. I’m a big fan of the mid-90’s black metal sound, bands like Dawn or Dissection are a huge influence on my writing style. Of course, I also really like Marduk, Belphegor, Angelcorpse, et. al., so that’s why you hear so much blasting and fast tempo songs. To answer your question, melody plays a huge role and I hope that’s what makes our songs memorable. Blast beats and tremolo picking are staples in our music.
How many years would you say that it took you to learn to play guitar this fast and tight? And how long can you go playing this music at any given time before your fingers and wrists hurt? Can you play for a couple of hours at time and your hands feel fine? What about after three hours?
I’ve been playing guitar for 25 years. I would say I got good enough to play extreme metal after 5 or 6 years. My wrists and fingers never hurt. Doing vocals is more of a strain than guitar playing. I’ve never played for three hours straight though!
On Campaign of Extermination you do have some slower segments, and the song “Beneditio Ultionis” itself is a slow tune, a slow sinister melodic black metal track. Do you remember how this song came about?
I started writing that particular song while I was still in Kommandant. I was definitely influenced by the songs they were writing at that time that had a slower but militant pulse to them (e.g. “Hate is Strength”). I guess for that song I did have a vision. I wanted to write something that had a march feel to it. I guess also, that I can be influenced by things that I hear that I like. I like to let songs come together on their own. Nothing is contrived (well almost nothing), so I can’t say we’ll ever do a song like that again. I have been experimenting with lower tunings though, so you can expect more heaviness in the future.
For Blood of the Wolf, what challenges do you encounter for getting the drum sound that you want?
This is the recording engineer’s job! Luckily, I don’t have to worry about it. Joe Tiberi does a great job of creating a tight low end. The drums have punch and depth but they are still clear and let the mix breathe. He’s done a good job for us.
How much is money an obstacle for getting the desired drums sound? Is another obstacle finding a person that knows how to record drum properly and how to record extreme, fast metal?
You nailed it in the second sentence! It’s just a matter of finding the right person. Their skills, work ethic, recording approach, temperament, etc. needs to match the bands. That’s critical to getting a good recording. You also need to be ready and rehearsed.
Changing the topic here. Lyrics. What role does war play in inspiration for the lyrics? Does any particular historical context provide a point of interest for you?
I would say that on the surface the lyrical topics are mostly about warfare. There are no concrete historical references or mythological ties. But, I guess if you were to interpret the lyrics, to look at them beyond the surface meaning, they are really about strength, determination, discipline, conflict and achievement. Campaign of Extermination was just a cool sounding title that works well with our music, it has no historical reference.
What are your views on misanthropy and nihilism? Do your lyrics intersect with misanthropy and nihilism?
Misanthropy and Nihilism: those are non-productive viewpoints. Sure, people can be pieces of shit, but if you live life like that you’re not going to be very productive or happy and people will not want to be around you for very long. Same for nihilism. You have to believe in something and I don’t mean in a religious way, but in a human endeavor way. I would not say my lyrics intersect with those viewpoints, but someone might hear that.
Do you personally enjoying listening to lots of blasting metal or do you ever get tired of it? For your guitarists, do you have any interest in other styles of guitar, like Cream or BB King or Yngwie Malmsteen or Van Halen or Pink Floyd?
I keep it pretty metal. Sometimes I listen to “lighter” stuff like Iron Maiden, Judas Priest or Dio, but for the most part it’s aggression and blast beats! I’m not really into guitar players or “shredders”, my “heroes” are song writers, like Morgan from Marduk or Jon from Dissection. I hate Pink Floyd.
Metal Archives says that the band is Mike Koniglio, Frank García, Rick Hernández, and Christopher Grimes. Is this accurate?
That’s it. Best line up the band has had so far.
What merchandise do you have?
We have t-shirts, hoodies, Cd’s, stickers and patches. Check out our Facebook page for all available merch.
Thank you for your time!
Thank you!

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Immortal-Northern Chaos Gods (review by MMB)

Immortal's 2018 album Northern Chaos Gods is an effort to convince the listener through the power of speed and fast songs. It is also an attempt to fulfill the expectations of the audience by cutting and pasting pieces from the previous albums in a considered formula. It has lots of bits and pieces of the previous albums. Those that want fast songs and are completely pleased with fast songs in and of themselves will have very little about which to complain. The Immortal businessmen thought about how to make sure that Immortal sounds like Immortal, how to deliver a good product.
The album's strength lies in the adept recycling of riffs. The continuation of Immortal's brand name is on the line with the album. The product is made to please, to make people bang their heads. The riffs, the imagery, the lyrics, it's all there. The album is made to impress on a first, hungry listen.
However, the downfall of the album is the lack of epic melody. After repeated listens, once the mind gets past the speed and the formula, and it's time to get to the nitty gritty and find out whether the album has the magical ingredient that will make it survive the killing floor of elimination and deletion, it is incapable of surviving the merciless guillotine. The guitar soloing is pitiful. It offers very little. Actually, it is practically non-existent. The last song is supposed to be the epic finale but, incredibly, there is no guitar solo in this nine-minute song. The song itself is alright, but it is artificially long for the sake of appearing epic. It is made long by simply repeating the verses and parts that were already heard before, earlier in the song. If there is no soloing, what about some black metal melodic guitar progressions? No, it's just not there.
Purchase if speed is a must, and perhaps the only necessity.
Listen carefully to find out for yourself if you are looking for the big melodies because I submit that they are not there.

Dee Snider: For the Love of Metal (review by MMB)

Dee Snider's For the Love of Metal is preaching to the choir of die-hard fanatics of the Mr. Snider's work. In addition, those fans of the crew involved on this album (Joel Grind from thrashers Toxic Holocaust; Mark Morton from groove rockers Lamb of God; Jamey Jasta from the thug/core band Hatebreed) should be interested, too. This is Dee doing a modern hard rock album, like a cross between Nickelback, Hellyeah and groove metal. The guitars do play-on chords, chugging grooves, that U.S. radio hard rock sound with an uptempo groove to give it the current metal sound. This is not a retro Twisted Sister album, just in case anyone is expecting or wanting that. This is foul-mouth, mean, faux angry old-man tough-guy cursing, shouting and singing, it's right up there with the most recent angry old-man rock of Metallica. Basically, it's very American-sounding, that Mid-America Walmart hard rock that gives the fans what they want. You want hard, angry rock, you get it here.
The guitar work stays on task; it's simple, direct, and it does sound like side project, not like a band. This is not a band, of course. It's a side project by the world-famous multi-entertainer Dee Snider. In some places, like on the song "I'm Ready," the soloing does stand out, it's fun, it's melodic, but those moments are the exception, not the rule. By the way, do not expect melody in the guitar nor memorable riffs. Expect a sort of weekend-warrior type of jamming, providing the meat and potatoes for the singer to do his thing; and it's strictly meat-and-potatoes groove, heavy rock.
In summary, the album is forgettable. You hear it one time and you have heard everything that there is. The worst part is the so-so guitar work on the riffs and rhythm guitars. All the instrumentalists involved do not seem to have experience writing traditional heavy metal because their experience is elsewhere: punk rock, hardcore, groove rock, extreme garage rock, speed/thrash, thug rock, and styles like that, but not traditional heavy metal. The inexperience and/or the lack of commitment shows a lot and the result is a weak, mediocre album.

NEWS: SKINNED unleash chemtrails over the dark volcanic shores of Iceland in new music video

The U.S. death metal band Skinned has a 2018 album called Shadow Syndicate on XenoKorp productions from France. The new album features the band's brand of brutal death metal.
Below you will find the video for the opening song from Shadow Syndicate called "Wings of Virulence." In addition, below you will find two more tracks from said album, and the official information about the band and album.
Colorado-based Death Metal veterans SKINNED are unleashing their brand new music video for the song "Wings of Virulence" right when embarking for their headlining Eastern Europe tour in support of just released fifth studio album, "Shadow Syndicate".
After the "We Are the End" music video and "As Their Bodies Fall" lyrics videos launched earlier this year, SKINNED are digging deeper into the darkest aspects of new album "Shadow Syndicate" dealing with conspiracy theories with the release of this brand new music video dealing with chemtrails and how they transformed Earth into a graveyard as discovers the main character when surfacing from the underground cave he was hiding in for the first time in years.
Shot on the dark volcanic shores of Iceland when SKINNED where playing Reykjavic Metalfest late May by OBSCENERY Films (HATEBREED, CATTLE DECAPITATION, PSYCROPTIC...), the video benefits from the unique, quite otherworldly black lava landscapes of Iceland to set a cinematic and dramatic feeling of anguish, devastation and oppression that fits the band's modern and dark approach of Exteme Metal so well!
After more than 20 years at it, four albums and countless gigs and tours worldwide with some of the most recognized of their peers (KATAKLYSM, INCANTATION, DEFEATED SANITY…), USA’s SKINNEDare back with their brand new full-length, “Shadow Syndicate“, again produced by Dave OTERO(CATTLE DECAPITATION, CEPHALIC CARNAGE…) resulting in what’s definitely an ambitious and outstanding landmark release of the band’s discography.
Aside from the great musicianship and production, the mastery achieved here is the ability that SKINNEDhave to channel all of their inspiration, musically and lyrically, to create an atmosphere of doom and darkness throughout the album to create a fiery and fierce release that’s diverse yet coherent, dense yet atmospheric and all the while brutal and melodic at the same time. Varied in shapes and moods, “Shadow Syndicate” (featuring among others guest vocals by Josh WELSHMAN (DEFEATED SANITY…) and guest lyrics by Paul McGUIRE (CEREBRAL BORE…), is the kind of work of art that’s much more than a collection of tracks: it’s a world in itself where each song explores a different aspect of dark beliefs (conspiracy theories, unsolved mysteries…), the whole creating a society of extreme darkness under the domination of the New World Order where the citizens become cattle for the governments and guinea pigs for alien entities, etc. ultimately leading our specie to its demise, the face under the merciless boot of the… “Shadow Syndicate“!
SKINNED "Wings of Virulence" [Official Music Video]
SKINNED "We are the End" 2017 [Official Video]
SKINNED "As Their Bodies Fall" [Official Lyrics Video] [feat. Josh Welshman of Defeated Sanity]

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Ghostblood (review by MMB)

Honey, I Raised the Dead
Release date: April 20th, 2018
label: independent
Ghostblood is a rough-and-tumble listen for any time of day, whether you are doing your best to make sure you turn in your homework on time for once in your life or when you’re trying to figure out how to unclog that slow-draining bathroom sink you have filled up with your headbanging red hair or when you are at the gym pretending that you are exercising by pedaling that useless stationary bike.
The main message that the zombieswampdeathrashers Ghostblood have for you in 2018 is: stop whining about whatever cause you have chosen to be all upset about this week, “Cascadia,” as you keep calling this place, is going to be fine because, hey, cheer up, there is a big earthquake waiting to happen and when it does, the Earth is going to have a great fun time at your expense. Quit your whining, don’t volunteer to clean up the environment, why don’t you volunteer to dig some graves in your neighborhood? The grave you save may be your own.
To solve all these problems, just consider the solution for all the commotion: a rumbly, dirty and loud bass guitar that stands out for its prominence and activity in the music. This bass guitar will not be silenced. Let that be a lesson to all you bassists out there. You have been bamboozled. You have low self-esteem. Don’t let anyone tell you that you are there just to stand in the corner with a stiff upper lip. You, too, can break out of the box and rip through the song like an ace of spades. Without a doubt, this album has to be amongst the top two albums that Ghostblood has done. Efficient, lunatic and rocking: all the songs are somewhere between two and four minutes, which is great because that’s all the time they need to convince anyone that is into fast, thrashing, horror-movie, stand-up-comedy, beer-minded, ghost-loving intensity.
The music goes from fast to faster, sometimes blasting, always thrashing. The trio relies on said loud bass to fill out the sound, the drums stay on an insistent beat that will get you no matter where you are, and the guitar slashes and buzzes riff after riff; here and there a bit of zombie melody is offered, and when they do it, the bass and drums come forward to keep the bottom end thundering. Mosh, slam, jump, nod, tap your feet, clap, bang your head or bounce to the Ghostblood.
The wonderful thing about Ghostblood
Is Ghostblood are wonderful things
Their songs are made with bud
Their music many zombies brings
They're merry, stary, hairy, scary
Run, run, run, run, run!
But the most wonderful thing about Ghostblood
Is they're the only one, they're the only one

Friday, July 27, 2018

Washington state concert calendar, updated July 27, 2018

Friends in the state of Washington,
Is there a metal music show in your area that is not listed in this calendar? Does your local metal band have a show coming up and is not listed here? Is your band's name spelled incorrectly? Are the dates wrong? If you have information about shows/updates/cancellations, please get in contact with Metal Bulletin zine.
Washington state concert calendar, updated July 27, 2018
July 28 Zero Down (album release show), Detonator, The Plot Sickens at Funhouse, Seattle, WA
July 28 Zombiefest at The Charleston, Bremerton, WA
July 28 Soiree Macabre III: A Flourishing Scourge, Voidthrone at Barboza, Seattle, WA
July 28 Leed Zeppelin (Led Zeppelin tribute) at Tony V’s, Everett, WA
July 28 Hell’s Belles (AC/DC tribute) at Ocean Shores, Seattle, WA
July 28 Heavy Summer (multiple bands) at The Valley, Tacoma, WA
July 28 Darkness Stole the Sky, Dismembering Mary, others at Le Voyeur, Olympia, WA
July 29 Hell’s Belles (AC/DC tribute) at Stones Summer Jam, Seattle, WA
July 29 Zombie Jihad and The Warning, A Black Sabbath Experience at Substation, Seattle, WA
July 29 Worshipper, Old Man Wizard at Funhouse, Seattle, WA
August 1 Traitors, Signs of the Swarm, Vultures Above Us, Dismembering Mary, others at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
August 2 Christ Killer, Florida Man, Open Veins, others at The Kraken, Seattle, WA
August 2 Mammoth Grinder, Quayde LaHüe, Sarin Attack at Highline, Seattle, WA
August 4 Wasteland Meltdown Festival 2018 at Eagles 2485, Kennewick, WA
August 4 Primordial Atrocity, Countless the Dead, others at Centralia, WA
August 4 Blistered Earth (Metallica tribute) at The Emerald of Siam Thai, Richland, WA
August 4 A Flourishing Scourge, Rat King, others at The Kraken, Seattle, WA
August 4 Effluvia, Schmutzhund, others at Black Zia Cantina, Burien, WA
August 5 Spokane Slam Again: Extortionist, Filth, Vctms, Reign, Farood, Aberrance, others at The Pin, Spokane, WA
August 6 Thou Shall Kill, Orator at Substation, Seattle, WA
August 7 Summer Slaughter Tour at Showbox, Seattle, WA
August 7 Novereign, Railgun, Weaponlord, Nasty Bits at Highline, Seattle, WA
August 9 Pathology, Within Destruction, Parasitic Ejaculation at Club Sur Rocks, Seattle, WA
August 9 Usnea, Amarok, Isenordal at Lo-Fi, Seattle, WA
August 9 Mortuous, Torture Rack, Crurifragium, Cerebral Rot at Highline, Seattle, WA
August 10 Pathology, Within Destruction, Parasitic Ejaculation, Transcribing the Necronomicon, Cold Hearts, Xingaia at The Pin, Spokane, WA
August 10 Descent, Metaphoria, Vesuvian at Tony V’s, Everett, WA
August 10 Night Demon, Blood Star, Demon Hammer at Highline, Seattle, WA
August 10 Aethereus, Theories, Blood and Thunder, Xoth at Airport Tavern, Tacoma, WA
August 10 Pestilent Death, Insineratenymn, Kömmand at Black Lodge, Seattle, WA
August 10 Dilapidation, Shrine of the Serpent, Heathen Washington at The Valley, Tacoma, WA
August 11 Aethereus, Zan, Odyssey at Checkerboard Bar, Spokane, WA
August 11 Elder, Serial Hawk, Witch Ripper, Summoned by Giants at Highline, Seattle, WA
August 14 Plague Bearer, Draghkar, Tyrants from Hell, Dilapidation at Funhouse, Seattle, WA
August 15 CKY, Slaves, Royal Thunder, Awaken I Am, Darkness Stole the Sky at Club Sur Rocks, Seattle, WA
August 16 Insect Ark, Eye of Nix, Belus, Forest of Grey at Highline, Seattle, WA
August 17 Vintersea, Apophis Theory, Somewhere Between at The Heavy Metal Brewing Co., Vancouver, WA
August 17 Eyehategod, Florida Man at Tony V’s, Everett, WA
August 17 The Accüsed AD at Slim’s Annual Hillbilly Headbanger’s, Seattle, WA
August 18 Theories, Succumb, Pyrrhon at Black Lodge, Seattle, WA
August 18 Hell’s Belles (AC/DC tribute) at Southwest Washington Fair, Chehalis, WA
August 19 Alice Cooper at Angel of the Winds, Everett, WA
August 20 Powerglove, Xoth, Orator at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
August 20 Apotheon, Aethereus, Enigma, Increate, Odyssian at Funhouse, Seattle, WA
August 21 Batushka, Addaura at Highline, Seattle, WA
August 22 Lamb of God, Napalm Death, The Accused AD at Knitting Factory, Spokane, WA
August 22 Bewitcher, Substratum at Highline, Seattle, WA
August 22 Armed for Apocalypse, Deathbed Confessions at The Observatory, Spokane, WA
August 23 Heiress, Great Falls, Kihalas, Deep Tissue, Ox Hunger at Highline, Seattle, WA
August 24 Oxygen Destroyer, Effluvia, Postulous, Without Chemicals He Points at The Plaid Pig, Tacoma, WA
August 24 Slayer, Lamb of God, Anthrax, Testament, Napalm Death at White River Ampitheatre, Auburn, WA
August 26 Dead Crown at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
August 26 Wet Temple, Opropos, Witch Ripper, Noceur at Karate Church, Bellingham, WA
August 31 Hell’s Belles (AC/DC tribute) at Snoqualmie Casino, Snoqualmie, WA
August 31 Urðr, Armed for Apocalypse at Hi-Fidelity Lounge, Bremerton, WA
September 1 Armed for Apocalypse, Deathbed Confessions at Funhouse, Seattle, WA
September 3 Vicious Rumors, others at The Pin, Spokane, WA
September 4 The Exploited, Total Chaos, others at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
September 5 Vicious Rumors at Club Sur Rocks, Seattle, WA
September 8 Effluvia, Oxygen Destroyer, Disease, Al Gore at Le Voyeur, Olympia, WA
September 8 Xoth, Blood and Thunder, Ghostblood, Progenitor at Tony V’s, Everett, WA
September 8 American Wrecking Company at Hard Rock Cafe, Seattle, WA
September 9 Unleash the Archers, Striker, Helion Prime at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
September 14 Splitskull, The Crüd Güns, Exiled to Fire, Darkness Stole the Sky, Infernal Realm, Religicide at The Charleston, Bremerton, WA
September 15 Speaks in Tongues, The Crüd Güns, DTI, others at The Valley, Tacoma, WA
September 15 The Accused AD at Bainbridge Island Private Party
September 15 Northwest Tribfest at Historic Everett Theater, Everett, WA: tribute bands Dr. Crue, Infinity Project (Journey), Blistered Earth (Metallica), Second Sting (Scorpions), Almost Human (Kiss)
September 15 Obscura, Beyond Creation, Archspire, Inferi, Exist, Aethereus at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
September 17 Alestorm, GloryHammer at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
September 19 Woe, Wvrm, others at Highline, Seattle, WA
September 20 Amorphis, Dark Tranquillity, Moonspell, Omnium Gatherum, Blood and Thunder, Convergence at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
September 21 Wiegedood, Addaura at Highline, Seattle, WA
September 22 Coven, Disciples of Dissent, others at Wally’s House of Booze, Wenatchee, WA
September 22 Hell’s Belles (AC/DC tribute) at Swinomish Casino & Lodge, Anacortes, WA
September 26 Angra, Scarlet Aura, Forsaken Fortress at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
September 26 Wintersun, NeObliviscaris, others at Club Sur Rocks, Seattle, WA
September 27 Kingdom Come, Zero Down, Celia at Club Sur, Seattle, WA
September 28 Dominus Sabbata (Black Sabbath tribute) at Rocko’s Fireside, Everett, WA
September 28 Pallbearer, Tribulation at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
September 29 The War Within, Corvoid, Metaphoria at Darrell’s Tavern, Seattle, WA
October 2 Incantation, Dying Fetus, Gatecreeper, Genocide Pact at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
October 3 Graham Bonnet Band, Zero Down at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
October 4 Revocation, Exhumed, Rivers of Nihil, Yautja at The Pin, Spokane, WA
October 5 Revocation, Exhumed, Rivers of Nihil, Yautja at Highline, Seattle, WA
October 5 Oxygen Destroyer, Gravewitch, Progenitor at McCoy’s Tavern, Olympia, WA
October 6 The Accused AD, Zero Down at The Plaid Pig, Tacoma, WA
October 9 Satan, Skelator at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
October 9 Carach Angren, Mors Principium Est, Wolfheart, Empyrean, Blood and Thunder at Club Sur Rocks, Seattle, WA
October 13 Hatebreed, Miss May I, Ringworm at Knitting Factory, Spokane, WA
October 14 Cognizant, Rottenness, Impulse Noise, Seizure at Funhouse, Seattle, WA
October 15 Enemy Soil, Antigama, Violent Opposition, Treasonist, The Drip at Funhouse, Seattle, WA
October 15 Paradise Lost, Sólstafir, The Atlas Moth at Neumos, Seattle, WA
October 15 Gwar, Hatebreed, Miss May I, Ringworm, American Sharks at Showbox, Seattle, WA
October 18 Steve Grimett’s Grim Reaper at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
October 21 Hell’s Belles (AC/DC tribute) at Tulalip Casino, Marysville, WA
October 21 Windhand, Satan’s Satyrs at Neumos, Seattle, WA
October 24 Captured by Robots, The Drip, others at The Big Dipper, Spokane, WA
October 25 Danzig, Venom Inc., Power Trip, Mutoid Man at Showbox, Seattle, WA
October 27 Method 13, Arisen from Nothing, The War Within, No Such Season at Madison Pub, Everett, WA
October 27 Hell’s Belles (AC/DC tribute) at Jazzbones, Tacoma, WA
October 29 Trivium, Avatar at Showbox, Seattle, WA
October 31 After the Burial, The Acacia Strain, After the Fallout at Club Sur Rocks, Seattle, WA
November 2 Second Sting (Scorpions tribute) at Tulalip Casino, Marysville, WA
November 9 Arsis, Decrepit Birth, Internal Bleeding, Pyrexia, Angelmaker, Within Destruction at Club Sur Rocks, Seattle, WA
November 9 Neck of the Woods at Eagles 2485, Kennewick, WA
November 10 Dilapidation, Oxygen Destroyer, Effluvia, Drawn and Quartered at The Valley, Tacoma, WA
November 13 Korpliklaani, Arkona at El Corazón, Seattle, WA
November 20 Behemoth, At the Gates, Wolves in the Throne Room at Showbox, Seattle, WA
December 28 Zoso (Led Zeppelin tribute) at Knitting Factory, Spokane, WA
May 30-June 1 Northwest Terrorfest at Neumos/Highline/Barboza, Seattle, WA
Metal Bulletin Zine
P.O. Box 1339
Lake Stevens WA 98258 USA

Tuesday, July 24, 2018


DEPTHS OF HATRED is an extreme band from Canada. They have a couple of albums from previous years, but in 2018 they have a new EP that you can hear in its entirety now. It is called Bloodguilt. They play fast, blasting, brutal extreme metal that shows various strands of death metal and metalcore fusing for an intense recording for fans looking for high-speed music of action, with some catchy, melodic hooks, too.
OFFICIAL: Montreal technical death metal outfit, DEPTHS OF HATRED, blend vicious, ferocious vocals, aggressive guitar riffs, and fast, relentless style drumming to result in a sound that some would call unforgiving. Their label debut EP titled Bloodguilt hits streets July 20th and will mark the first recordings with new frontman, Nico Monette, who replaces exiting singer, Dominic D.D.
Coming right before the release of Bloodguilt, the band will embark on a two and a half week Canadian run with HIDEOUS DIVINITY. Starting July 19th in Montreal, it will serve as Monette’s first concert with the band as well as their EP release show. Complete tour dates can be found below.

NEWS: Hear the Single from ARTIZAN's "The Curse of the Artizan" Reissue

The American melodic masters ARTIZAN have a new album coming up in August and it will be called Demon Rider, but in addition, Artizan will see its 2011 debut album Curse of the Artizan reissued by Pure Steel Records. For fans of bands with good traditional singing and quality songs, Artizan is a great recommendation.
Go to the first link below to listen to where it all started for Artizan. That song is a great example of their sound and it summarizes well the style of the band.
The single of the US-Metal Band ARTIZAN - "The Man In Black" was released on Soundcloud. The rerelease date of the ARTIZAN album „The Curse Of The Artizan" on CD is August 17th, 2018. The pre-order phase will start on August 3rd, 2018 in our webshop.
In 2009 the Florida-originated ARTIZAN unleashed - just a year after their formation - a self-released and -titled debut-EP, which reached great success in the Underground-scene.
In 2011 the firs
t complete album "Curse Of The Artizan" was released, which consistently continued the class of the progressive, pathos-dripping and extremely melodic US Metal sound. It caused some euphoric reactions from the press and fans, because the band has a completely independent sound up to this day. With "Ancestral Energy" and "The Furthest Reaches" two more masterpieces have been released in the meantime and in this year’s August the guys around drummer Ty Tammeus are going to unleash their next strike "Demon Rider".
Since the debut is completely out of print, it's time for a reissue, for the first time also officially in the US.
1. Trade the World
2. Rise
3. The Man in Black
4. Fire
5. Fading Story
6. Game within a Game
7. Torment
8. Curse of the Artizan
Total Playing Time: 48:50 min
Tom Braden - vocals
Ty Tammeus - drums
Shamus McConney - guitars
Jonathan Jennings Jr. - bass

NEWS: HELLISH New Album Releases This Week

The Chilean extreme band HELLISH has its new album The Spectre of Lonely Souls out on the 27th of July, 2018. Check out the official information and hear a cut from the new album at the link below.
Many continents can lay claim to being formative breeding grounds for various pieces of the extreme metal puzzle, but perhaps none were such a melting pot as South America in the 1980s. Bands in Brazil, Chile, and other countries pushed thrash metal to its limits until it blurred into what would later be known as black and death metal, and dressed the whole thing in extreme expressions of occultism and hellfire. With that bed of influence bubbling beneath them, modern-day thrashers Hellish make perfect sense: tightened and refined (but only barely), without diminishing any of the speed-freak tendencies or punkish intensity of their predecessors, and certainly no less devoted to the left hand path.
Coming out of Santiago, Chile in the 2010s, Hellish previously made believers out of thrash fans worldwide with their Unspeakable Axe-released debut, Grimoire. Only two years later, the follow-up album manages to out-pace and out-riff what came before. Classic speed metal-style riffs cut through an atmosphere of evil worthy of Bathory or Possessed - this is formative stuff, once again splashing around in the dark murk between thrash and black metal, and even straight-up heavy metal in the occasional, surprisingly melodic lead parts. But make no mistake: Hellish worship at the twin altars of evil and velocity, and The Spectre of Lonely Souls is a sermon strictly for the already-converted.

Monday, July 23, 2018

NEWS: Out Aug 24 - LORDS OF THE TRIDENT - "Shadows From The Past" ft. guest vocals from Unleash The Archers' Brittney Slayes

Ten years ago in the volcanoes, mountains and oceans of the ancient metropolis of Madison, Wisconsin, U.S.A. a new world saw the light of eternity, and Zeus smiled upon the universe and declared: LORDS OF THE TRIDENT will bring heavy metal to the mortals. Upon receiving their mission from Zeus the LORDS descended from Olympus and rang out their declaration to humanity: "Let's get this party started!"
On the 24th of August of 2018 Shadows from the Past will be given as a free gift from the gods to those that pay money in order to obtain for themselves and for posterity a precious copy of an album so unique that there will be no more copies for anyone under any circumstances, unless more people need more copies, in which case an exception will be made and more copies will be printed.
Lords of the Trident is an incarnation of heavy metal and heavy metal is the spirit of Lords of the Trident. They give you now the privilege of hearing a new song at the link below the official propaganda of might. You have two choices: join the Lords or the Lords will join you.
A true spectacle to be witnessed, LORDS OF THE TRIDENT is a daring adventure metal quintet that has been delighting their audiences and fans all over the world for ten years. To continue on their epic quest of bringing spectacular and entertaining metal to global fans these power metal warriors will be unleashing their 7th album “Shadows From The Past” on August 24th. The album features 11 adventurous heavy metal tracks for its North American release, which includes guest vocals from Unleash The Archers Brittney Slayes on “Burn It Down (With Fire)” plus 2 bonus tracks “Cross The Line” and “Desolation (Haze of the Battlefield Pt. 2)” for its Japanese special edition along with Patreon backers receive an extra exclusive track entitled “Fire and Sand”.
Vocalist Fang VonWrathenstein comments on the album:
“This album is our most ambitious musical work to date, and the first album with our new members Baron Helleshaar and Master Herc. Fans who have been with us for a while will notice that our new songs are a bit more complex, and our songwriting continues to mature. The new songs are definitely still Lords songs, but explore some new musical themes. I believe the new album will be our strongest offering yet, and contain some songs that are sure to be fan favorites going forward.”
“Shadows From The Past” was supported by a kickstarter campaign that went live on June 1st and ended on June 29th. During that month, the band’s fans helped them surpass their goals to raise over $11,000 for the release. The band offered multiple packages and rewards that included merch, lessons from band members, festival tickets, private concerts and a copy of the video game Coffee Crisis that the band has partnered with to feature one of their songs for one of the levels along with band members as NPCs (non-playable characters). Since climbing out of a volcano in 2008, shrouded in metal and ash, LORDS OF THE TRIDENT have gone to battle on many stages across the USA, playing and and headlining a plethora of festivals and have an admirable arsenal of recordings in their inventory.
The fiery party of five talented musicians have spent the last 10 years gleefully drinking ale while performing alongside other revered bands such as Helloween, Unleash the Archers and 3 Inches of Blood. While creating their music is largely a group endeavour, The Baron has been leading the charge for the band’s musical evolution.
Vocalist Fang elaborates: “The Baron has extensive background in songwriting and music theory, so one of the first things he did after joining the band was figure out what sort of song motifs we hadn’t explored. Once he came to us with this list, we dove headfirst into unexplored territory which allowed our songwriting and musical skill to grow quite significantly.”
Their live shows include medieval costumes, pyrotechnics, confetti cannons, guitars set ablaze, and of course, excellent technical musicianship challenge the standard for how live music should be experienced. Citing influences such as Iron Maiden, Scar Symmetry and Judas Priest, and embracing lyrical themes inspired by great battles, conquests, dragon-fightin, virtual reality, and out-of-control robots LotT dish out face-melting power that is enjoyed by fans of all races and classes.
THE LORDS OF THE TRIDENT have released three full albums: “Death or Sandwich” (2009)(Junko Johnson), “Chains on Fire” (2011) (Junko Johnson), “Frostburn” (2015) (Junko Johnson (NA)/Kill Metal Records (EU)), three EPs: “Plan of Attack” (2013) (Junko Johnson), “A Very Lords of the Trident Christmas” (2014) (Junko Johnson), “Re:Quests” (2015) (Junko Johnson), and two live DVDs, along with numerous compilation singles.

NEWS: New HESSIAN Album in September

The new Hessian album will be called Mercenary Retrograde, scheduled for September 14th, 2018. The chosen field of operations for Hessian is classic-style 1970s heavy metal. Both the American sound of wild and free melodic heavy rock and the mid-to-late British uptempo, high-energy hard rock converge and intertwine. The guitar harmonies have plenty of room to expand fully and come to the forefront of the music. The speed of the music is rather uptempo, sometimes it is headbanging and sometimes it grooves; the music is always melodic, and always sounds very grounded in the great vibes of 1970s heavy rock. Naturally, in this music, you hear the bass guitar well, and the drumming works with the bass as a glue that keeps together the foundation of the song. The vocals are a bit tripped out, sometimes the singing is melodic, and at other times it is somewhat a bit moody, changing colors throughout the songs.
Hessian should be interesting for those fans looking to hear music based on traditional hard rock riffs, guitar melodies, somewhat quirky singing and songs that are easy on the listener. In other words, Hessian has studied the classics a lot, and they live for heavy rock that can win out based on the strength of the songs, and basically only the songs in and of themselves. Come to Hessian for melodies, for rocking songs, and expect to hear a wide spectrum of vibes that look to the greatest 1970s hard rock to create a sound based on those traditions for today, for a bit of a different interpretation of heavy metal in the world of today.
See the official information below.
On September 14th 2018, HESSIAN will release their new album Mercenary Retrograde.
It took five years for Hessian to get their Bachelor of Black Arts, now it’s time to accept their Master’s diploma. The Portland, Maine-based heavy metal band garnered a substantial amount of recognition for their EP and début album - including a coveted spot as Fenriz’s Band of the Week. Mastermind Angus McFarland oversaw every stage, from sitting at the kitchen counter studying heavy metal harmonies of “the Old Ones of heavy metal” to touring nationally and playing festivals in Sweden and the UK. After a complete upheaval in lineup, Hessian are now ready with their second album Mercenary Retrograde - a wholly apt name. Angus has called up some rock n’ roll soldiers to aid him, including Greg Souza, Mike Pearce, and Zöey Haab.
“The title of the album reflects the history of the band at the time of writing. Mercenary because the band consisted of hired guns, and Retrograde because we are always looking back to the Old Ones of heavy metal for inspiration.” While Thin Lizzy are held in exceptionally high regard around Camp Hessian, there’s appreciation for any of the old guard in early metal and heavy rock - even some thrashier material as well; Angus’ occasional snarling yelp is testament to that. As for the lyrics, “it is an album about sex and death, which is what all good metal albums are, at heart, about.” That goes for the rockin’ opener “I Wish I Was Dead”, the macabre “Skull Ring” or the decadent and doomy “The Viper”. Final track “Manos - The Hands of Fate” rings out on a strong note with some phenomenal saxophone work over the heavy riffing.
Hessian have been through the wringer, but perseverance and a wholehearted belief in heavy metal have allowed them to prevail. Mercenary Retrograde is a triumphant record that looks proudly at the past and future simultaneously.

Saturday, July 21, 2018

NEWS: Watch the New FROZEN CROWN Video

The Italian power metal band Frozen Crown has a new video for the cut "Everwinter" from the album The Fallen King from 2018. Below you will find a review by this publication from earlier this year, and you will also find some official information about the band.
REVIEW: Big pop power metal primed for international massive success in Europe, Japan and South America may be the destiny and aim of this band. The album is carefully designed to leave no stone unturned in order to hit every check mark that the loyal fans of the genre want, demand and love.
The band features prominently two vocal energies, male and female, as a general rule. Both voices work well together, harmonious and catchy, starting with the first song, a fast track of European power metal. They add little spices all over the place. For instance, the second song is a radio-style pop metal song with a fun, uptempo vibe. It’s definitely pop music. Of course, they do the power metal rocking songs, the band’s go-to mode is, in fact, uptempo and fast songs loaded to the gills with melodies. The guitar melodies are big for this album, but the keyboards are important, too.
The band has a bit of a wild side to them. For instance, on the last song, they go into blasting mode and incorporate growling into the song and they end this thing in big bang style. Here and there, they have a bit of growling in some songs. The band does quite a bit of variety, but they are not a blank file or a replica, blindly following a strict formula. The band has given a kingdom for a heart like this, one that can take the music in different directions.
Now, you may be saying, “That’s all well and good, but why don’t you give me the bad news?! Tell me about the bad side of the album, show me the weaknesses.”
Well, you have a point. I will most certainly show you the bad parts of the album. I will tell you all about the weak aspects of this album for sure. I will tell you about the bad elements of the album just as soon as I find them.
It is true that bad news travels fast, but this good news should travel faster. Hopefully this is not the end of this chapter.
BIO: Frozen Crown is a Melodic Power Metal band with female and male vocals, drawing inspiration from early Sonata Arctica and Nightwish, as well as from the most recent European metal acts like Orden Ogan. Between catchy and epic refrains, melodic guitar riffs and vocal duets on a solid Power Metal basis, the band makes frequent incursions in Classic Heavy Metal (Iced Earth, Iron Maiden), Folk and Melodic Death (early Children of Bodom and Dark Tranquillity), occasionally adding screaming vocals. The use of Keyboards enriches the songs and adds an epic edge to them, without being too invasive for the band's sound, which still remains heavily guitar driven. The songwriting duties rely on singer, guitarist and keyboard player Federico Mondelli (Be The Wolf), flanked by singer and frontwoman Giada Etro (Ashes You Leave, Tystnaden). The rest of the band is formed by 17 years old female guitarist Talia Bellazecca, bass player Filippo Zavattari and drummer Alberto Mezzanotte.
FROZEN CROWN - Everwinter (Official Video) 4K UHD

NEWS: LAST PHARAOH Upcoming Album in September via Pure Steel Records

Fans of traditional high screaming shredding heavy metal should be on the lookout for the American band LAST PHARAOH. By way of Pure Steel Records they will have their debut full-length album The Mantle of Spiders on the 21st of September of 2018. The pre-order starts on September 7th. Read the official information about the album and band below.
LAST PHARAOH combines the rhythmic power of eighties heavy metal with the virtuosity of neo-classical master shredders. The US hopeful hails from the Hudson Valley region of New York. The band consists of vocalist Tommy Santangelo, guitarist Ron Toth, bassist Michael James and drummer Ed Shelinsky.
In contrast to other bands of this genre LAST PHARAOH delivers powerful and melodic songs without getting too progressive, they hit the heart and brain of all headbangers instantly. Their debut album “The Mantle of Spiders” is not only recommended to fans of Malmsteen and Impellitteri, but also Queensryche and Judas Priest.
1. Into The Darkness
2. The Headless Horseman
3. Jekyll And Hyde
4. Deadly Dreams
5. Machinic Non-Conscience
6. Slave To The Kill (The Son Of Sam)
7. Desert Dreams
8. Mantle Of Spiders
9. Psycho House
Total Playing Time: 46:09 min
Tommy Santangelo – vocals
Ron Toth – guitars
Michael James – bass
Ed Shelinsky – drums
LAST PHARAOH is a melodic Power Metal/Progressive Metal/Neo-Classical band from the Hudson Valley-Westchester region of New York. Their sound features melodic and refined vocals, blistering solos, and a driving rhythm section. All flow fluidly well into crafted catchy songs. Recently formed, the band consists of veteran pros with years of performing and recording experience.
Ron started playing music at a very young age. He first started on the clarinet, but quickly switched to guitar when he heard the opening guitar riff to Alice Cooper's, "School's Out." From then on he was hooked on guitar. His band Pegasus made it to #13 band in Ohio while he was still in High school. He then moved to New York & got a gig with William Ames {Conductor of the London Symphony Orchestra} doing Neo-Classical Hard Rock/Metal. Ron has appeared on ESP records, and Prisonrock records. Ron has now found a perfect musical fit in LAST PHARAOH.
Tommy fell in love with, "The Voice Of Metal" in 1982 while giving Iron Maiden's The Number Of The Beast its first initial listen after receiving a copy from his Uncle. From there, he took on the vocal styles of Queensryche, Dio, King Diamond, Grim Reaper, Savatage and Helloween, melding all those vocal aspects into his own unique style. Tommy's vocal range is very wide and dynamic. He can switch from aggressive melodic, (DIO) to stratospheric, piercing falsettos (King Diamond) at the blink of an eye. Tommy's vocal style is a perfect fit for LAST PHARAOH.
In 1986, Michael picked up the bass for the first time, and began a voyage that would see him fusing the technicality of Progressive Metal, and the speed of Thrash, with his own adaptive and versatile style which transcends the Metal Spectrum. Michael's bass playing is a perfect fit for Ron's style and they compliment each other wonderfully. Michael's fingers blaze through notes and progressions with pin-point accuracy, making him the perfect fit for LAST PHARAOH.
Ed started playing drums at the age of 8. Beginning with Led Zeppelin, then moving on to Metallica, Iron Maiden, Slayer and Pantera. A hard hitting drummer, Ed can play anything thrown his way. Melding wonderfully constructed rythms into gigantic drumming beats and incredible fills, Ed has finally found his home as the backbone for LAST PHARAOH.

NEWS: New SKELETONWITCH Album Out Now & Streaming in Entirety

The cat is out of the bag now and it is time for you to hear the new direction of SKELETONWITCH. The American band is now letting people hear its first full-length album with the new vocalist Adam Clemans. Devouring Radiant Light is out now on Prosthetic Records. This is a case of an album that you have to hear for yourself because it involves a different screamer on an entire new studio album. The old fans will certainly demand to hear the transition and now they can, and the new fans will hear the veteran act in its latest incarnation. It is a good idea not to judge it based on one song. This one has various sides and a complete listen will show a lot better than one song where Skeletonwitch is headed in the years to come. Below is the official information.
Devouring Radiant Light
Prosthetic Records
20 July 2018
With Devouring Radiant Light, their fifth full-length album for Prosthetic Records, an American heavy metal institution, SKELETONWITCH have succeeded where many have failed: they have reformulated their sound mid-career with dizzyingly triumphant results. Since their inception, Skeletonwitch have been known for blending and bending metal subgenres. The members’ collective love of Judas Priest, classic-era Metallica and Immortal has always been worn on their sleeves and remains evident. However, it’s the band’s blacker leanings that have shifted to the forefront and altered the tenor of the through line on this latest offering.
Grasping the blackened thread of “White Light” that revealed itself on their 2016 EP, The Apothic Gloom (the band’s first recording with vocalist Adam Clemans), Skeletonwitch has emerged with the eight-song, searing, soaring, burning statement of purpose: Devouring Radiant Light. The record demonstrates a band coalescing both compositionally and conceptually. Three of the eight tracks on “Devouring Radiant Light” hover near the seven minute mark and a fourth nearly reaches nine minutes. This is a band cultivating new ambition.
While black metal has always been a recognizable component of the Skeletonwitch DNA, Devouring Radiant Light sees the band crashing headlong into the subgenre like never before. And where Skeletonwitch previously ran its output through a Second Wave Black Metal filter, Devouring incorporates a strong atmospheric influence. Bergtatt-era Ulver and Cascadian black metal lineage are palpable. From ethereal intros to tremolo sky-ride leads Devouring is draped and adorned with the musical lexicon of black metal. But the expansion of influence does not stop there.
Nathan Garnette and Scott Hedrick are still co-captaining the dual-guitar stratospheric charge but they’ve dramatically expanded their palette. Celestial crunch that evokes post-metal pioneers, Isis? Check. Gothic doom passages à la Paradise Lost? Check. High-flying Åkerfeldt-ian solos slingshotting over mountains of undulating progressive rhythms? Check. The foundation for this sonic structure is the thunderous drumming and the effortless bass work of Evan Linger who possesses some of the strongest 4-string chops of any player in heavy music.
And then there’s vocalist Adam Clemans. Equal parts Tompa Lindberg fury and Jacob Bannon punk rage, Clemans’ creative intensity and sense of purpose fueled the band’s new musical trajectory which surfaced on The Apothic Gloom. His organic writing lends the band a newfound gravitas and his vocal performance is nothing short of epic.
Originally hailing from Ohio, Skeletonwitch were cheekily dubbed the Sons of Midwestern Darkness in their early days. That nom de guerre now applies in spirit only as the band’s members span the Coasts. This separation forced the band to transcend geography, crafting and refining the material digitally from a distance.
Like the previous full-length, this album was recorded by Converge guitarist and engineering deity Kurt Ballou (High on Fire, Kvelertak, Dillinger Escape Plan) at GodCity Studio in Salem, Massachusetts. The band’s rapport with Ballou provided the familiarity necessary to embrace uncharted creative territory. Melodeath genre architect Fredrik Nordström (Opeth, At the Gates) mixed the album at Studio Fredman in Gothenburg, Sweden to massive results. The record was mastered by Brad Boatright of metallic hardcore greats From Ashes Rise at Audiosiege Engineering in Portland, Oregon.
Devouring Radiant Light is black metal. It is thrash metal. It is death metal. It is prog metal. It is doom metal. It is HEAVY METAL. Skeletonwitch have successfully ushered in a new era landing on “Sacred Soil.”

Thursday, July 19, 2018

NEWS: WEAPON UK "Rising From The Ashes" - LIMITED VINYL EDITION - Cover, Tracklist, release date: 28th September 2018

Weapon UK--the real Weapon that is, the one from the New Wave of British Heavy Metal--in September will see their 2014 album Rising from the Ashes issued on vinyl by the folks over at Pure Steel Records. Fans of the cult bands from this particular period of British heavy rock certainly will be interested in the news of Weapon UK. Metallica has helped to bring attention to the band's early work, but nowadays the band is active and going as the album illustrates. Rising from the Ashes shows a band playing its music decades later, finding new ways in its sound after they broke up decades ago. At the same time, don't doubt it, Weapon UK is here to rock, above all; and Rising from the Ashes proves it time and time again.
Below you will find a couple of links about Weapon UK and the album.
“Set The Stage Alight” must be considered one of the biggest hymns of the entire New Wave Of British Heavy Metal period. Just ask a certain Lars Ulrich. (More of that a bit later). “Set The Stage Alight” originally appeared on the B-Side of Weapon’s debut 7”/12” single »It’s A Mad Mad World« (issued in 1980).
The original “classic” line-up of Weapon consisted of Bruce Bisland (drums), Jeff Summers (guitars), Barry Downes (bass) and Danny Hynes (vocals). The band was initially called Fast Relief but changed its name to Weapon in early 1980.
People have for a long time been baffled by the astonishing similarities between “Set The Stage Alight” and Metallica’s “Hit The Lights”, especially regarding the main riff. Has the band ever talked to Lars or James about this? Danny Hynes explains: “Anyone who knows the history of Weapon will know that ‘Set The Stage Alight’ was written by Jeff in 1979, three to four years before ‘Hit The Lights’. Metallica actually lifted the whole intro and used it for their song ‘Hit The Lights’!”
Due to management problems, the original incarnation of Weapon split up in mid-1981 before having recorded their long awaited debut album. Pure Steel’s »Set The Stage Alight« record compiled on glorious vinyl what would have been Weapon’s first full-length album. Danny Hynes explains: “We would have completed the four demos and put twelve songs on the album. All the finished tracks were recorded between July and August 1980 at The Manor Studios, Oxford (which was also the home of Richard Branson) and Townhouse Studios, Shepherds Bush, London. The demos were recorded at Alvic Studios in West Kensington, London.”
Weapon did briefly reform in 1984 and even recorded some demos with Andy Scott of Sweet. In 2014, their proper comeback album »Rising From The Ashes« was released. Danny Hynes comments on the exclusive vinyl edition put out Pure Steel Records: “»Rising From The Ashes« was a direct continuation of our early material but we've matured as people and musicians over the intervening years so have a much more modern sound. Overall the material its a bit more melodic, a bit more polished. We received incredible reviews by the press and fans. My personal favourites are ‘Ride The Mariah’, ‘Alemain’ and ‘Burning Skies’. I wrote the lyrics to ‘Burning Skies’ on the flight to London to record the album. I had the music on my phone and was thinking about the 9/11 disaster and the whole thing came to me in a matter of minutes.”
Seite A
1. The Awakening (Prelude)
2. Ride The Mariah!
3. Fountain Of Paradise
4. Warrior
5. Ready 4 You
6. Burning Skies
7. The Rocker (Bonustrack)
Side B
8. Alamein
9. Wonderland
10. Bloodsoaked Rock
11. Bad Reputation
12. Celebration Time
13. Killer Instinct (Bonustrack)
Total Playing Time: 51:19 min
[To satisfy your curiosity about the early sound of the band, listen here so you can hear what got a young Lars Ulrich excited a long time ago.]
Weapon - Set The Stage Alight

NEWS: HITTEN Upcoming New Album "Twist of Fate"; Watch New Video Now "On the Run"

Hitten is a celebration of classic traditional heavy metal, an incarnation of anthems invoking physical movement and dedicated loyalty of the followers of the spirit of golden tunes. They are on the verge of issuing a new album called Twist of Fate on High Roller Records. Twist of Fate is the third album of this Spanish band from Murcia. The band prefers to craft uptempo, banging songs driven by the power of the riff and the energy on the drums to match. At the same, they reveal an even more melodic side, like on the song "Evil within" in which the guitars open up another angle for Hitten by slowing down for part of the song, before kicking it up to the banging vibe again. Of course, Hitten's music would not work as well as it does, if they did not feature the singer who can interpret this music the right way. With Hitten you will get high, clear singing and plenty of high screams as the standards of the genre require. From top to bottom, the Spaniards aim to win the allegiance of the devoted fans of classic, traditional and melodic metal.
Below you will find all the official information about Hitten.
The release of Twist of Fate is coming up in September. The band's new video for the cut "On the Run" offers a strong indication of the entire work. Check it out below.
HITTEN - "Twist Of Fate"
Label: High Roller Records
Release date: 14.09.2018
HITTEN formed in 2011 in the city of Murcia in the South-East of Spain (near Alicante). The same year the band issued their first demo entitled »Darkness Queen«. Two EPs and one full album entitled »First Strike With The Devil« (2014) followed, before HITTEN signed to High Roller Records for their second full-length record »State Of Shock«. With captivating heavy metal songs such as “Don’t Be Late”, “Endless Race” and “Eternal Force” »State Of Shock« was a clear improvement on the band’s rather naïve debut effort, altogether a more rounded effort. Founding member and guitarist Dani Meseguer cites Accept, Iron Maiden, Judas Priest and Saxon as HITTEN’s musical inspiration, as well as US Metal bands such as Fifth Angel, Crimson Glory, Shok Paris and Metal Church.
“Me and the boys are pretty satisfied with how »State Of Shock« was received,” explains Dani Meseguer. “The album reached a lot of shops, labels, magazines, and webzines all over the world. It also took us on a really good tour around Europe, we played cool festivals and appeared in Japan for the very first time. We are really happy with how High Roller Records works overall.”
However, the period between »State Of Shock« and the brand new album »Twist Of Fate« saw some changes in the HITTEN camp: “In September 2017, our singer Aitor played his last show with HITTEN and then left the band. As we all know, it’s very hard for a band to find a new vocalist. Well, not for HITTEN though. Alexx is a gift from heaven, he was there for us at the perfect time.”
“We are more than happy with the final result of »Twist Of Fate«,” continues Dani Meseguer. “From the cover art to the music, it’s all high quality stuff. We truly believe that people who enjoyed »State Of Shock« are going to enjoy »Twist Of Fate« even more. The mix (by Javi Félez) and the mastering (Patrick W. Engel) is simply incredible. The album is full of crazy twin guitar passages, very emotional solos, high-pitched screams, vocal harmonies and powerful backing vocals … all the necessary ingredients for a great metal album! Alexx did a hell of a job with the vocals, he really is amazing. He has a very broad vocal range. He can perfectly sing in a low range but at the same time also go for those insane high-pitched screams that we all love.”
Twist of Fate
release date: September 14th, 2018
label: High Roller Records
1. Take It All
2. Final Warning
3. Twist of Fate
4. Flight to Freedom
5. Svccvbvs
6. Evil Within
7. On the Run
8. In the Heat of the Night
9. Rockin' Out the City
10. Heroes
HITTEN - On the run (Official Video) | High Roller Records

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

folk metal salutations from Russia: Вольга

Вольга (VOL'GA) is Russian-language folk metal from Rybinsk, Russia. This album is recommended for fans of folk metal in general because the quality of the recording is good and the songs are catchy. The album Солнцеславие is available as a name-your-price recording at the link below, where you will also find official information about the album.
release date: June 21st, 2018
label: independent
1. Грезилось 02:51
2. Солнцеславие 05:22
3. Жаворонки 04:21
4. Как по горам 01:45
5. Ветры 04:11
6. Стрижочки 05:02
7. Сварожич 02:36
8. Роса 04:48
9. Полдень 04:45
10. Родник 04:22
total time 40:03
The album 'Heliolatry' is a story about warmth and light, and the triumphant joy of the sun worshipers. It’s a tale about the way how he, Yarilo, the young prince of the firmament, descends to earth with his shining crown on his head… how he does not disdain to be behind the plough in order to plow the ice and snow, and crack the ice chains with his full force… how he starts dancing in a round and involves all the folks in the reel, and this kingly young man plays the flute just like an ordinary skomorokh… how he dances faster and faster, whirling and sweeping the snow and cold with his violent dance… how he drives the old lady-winter away… and how, having dealt with this disgusting winter, he walks through the blossoming fields, enters the green groves, where he is to be met by the choir of spring birds full of adoration with him.
The thawed soft soil waits with love for the grain to give birth to a bountiful harvest. The plowman walks across the field behind the plough, and, above his head, in the azure sky, a lark sings – the joyful bird of these glorious days! The gardens, groves and ravines are covered with flowers, the leaves are green, and the singing birds sing their hymns day and night – everyone tirelessly glorifies the Sun in their own manner.
Summer follows after spring - the grass grows, the meadows blossom, and the bees busy buzz over them the whole day – it’s the high point of the honey harvest. Hot drunken air of meadows, sweet fragrant haze of wild grasses! What a great time!
Oh, summer storms! The wind rushes suddenly, and breaks the branches and grass down, tears the leaves from the trees, churns the rivers. The horizon is poured with lead blue – it’s the way the warrior hosts of clouds flow as lava. The thunder splits the sky, the lightning flashes, they strike the ground together, and the divine living fire will be born on earth from their thunderbolts. It is not easy to find such kind of fire, but it’s even harder to revive, nourish, and bring it up. And then – tame, entame its upbringing power. So the gods descend to earth and rejoice with the people, they drink the heady joy of Life from a common bowl as equals!
The evening succeeds the day, the twilight follows the light. Tired grasses enjoy the dew, and we walk along the wet grasses, we walk through the dew deep into the forest. Without saying anything, without saying to anyone. We’ve got a case and a goal there, the goal we will say not a word about, because there are no words of this kind in the whole world. We will be in the darkness of the summer night there – looking for and find… we will find IT in any way. And, having found IT, we will be able to take, take IT with us. Namely THIS.
And again – the day follows the night, it’s the time of a shining hot noon! Glittering of glossy foliage… the waves of grasses, over which a warm wind runs about… the Volga is spreading below the bluff from horizon to horizon. I feel free and joy on open spaces of the Volga, on my land!
…And this cycle of life will never end.