4/27/2015

Full package of shred with first single from Ol Drake

Today I've got something special for all of you guitar freaks out there that love the shred style and find some of the well known guitarists in the thrash sector amongst their all-time favorite list.

Former Evile lead guitarist Ol Drake has released the first single from his upcoming debut solo album, 'Old Rake'. The track features guest appearances from Gary Holt (Exodus/Slayer), James Murphy (Death/Testament/Obituary) and Josh Middleton (Sylosis) and is - somewhat suitably - called "Guitarists Playing Guitars"!

I love that title because when drummers are playing drums what do guitarists do? Playing guitars of course and that's what the guys really do on this track. While the basics of the track are kept straight forward and with a typical riff it's the solo guitar sections that give this track something special. Some of them are really outstanding and leave you behind asking how the heck that might have been done.

You can check out the track below or listen to it on Spotify. Go and check out Ol Drake on this years edition of the Bloodstock Open Air which takes place from August 6th - 9th at Catton Park in Derbyshire, UK. The current timetable lists his performance for Sunday, August 9th on the Sophie stage.


Ol Drake's debut solo album, 'Old Rake' features instrumental guitar encompassing a myriad of styles, including flat-out shredding, classical, progressive, melodic and acoustic.  The album is due to be released on June 22nd in Europe and June 23rd in the USA.

The album is available to pre-order now on CD and limited edition signed CD, and for anyone brave enough to want to try playing the songs for themselves, there's also a deluxe 242-page tab book featuring full tablature for both guitar and bass, transcribed by Ol himself!
Pre-order the 'Old Rake' CD, signed CD and official tab book now in Europe at http://webstore.earache.com/ol-drake or in the USA at http://uswebstore.earache.com/ol-drake

The album is also available to pre-order now on iTunes, including an exclusive bonus track as well as an instant download of "Guitarists Playing Guitars", at http://bit.ly/oldrake-itunes

We'll leave you with a sneak peek of the official tab book (https://youtu.be/EFAm2-6mJkA), and for those of you crazy brave enough, here's the "Guitarists Playing Guitars" tab for you to try! http://bit.ly/1D5ofws

4/25/2015

A Light Within reveal cover and tracklist for upcoming EP 'Body Matter'

After being in the makings for some time A Light Within have finally announced the title and tracklist for the follow-up EP to the 2013 release "Preface".

The new record is entitled "Body Matter" and will see the digital release on July 7th, 2015 through Static Tension Recordings. It will feature six brand-new tracks from the Shoegaze/Post-Metal formation. Check out the full tracklist below:

1. Torn Page #21
2. Page #22 _No Charge
3. Page #51 _Between Shores
4. Page #29 _World Through the Window
5. Page #13 _To Have; To Hold
6. Page #47-48 _Glaso

The label along with the band gave a little insight on the new output with the following describtion on the labels website:

"(...) Step into the gloom, feel its warm embrace. Close your eyes and let the ambience wash over you, the music unfolding into a wave of shoegazing post-metal. Distant, pained clean vocals appear in the haze, drawing the words from pages in a diary and turning them into a catharsis. The guitars flip from fragile melodies to thundering riffs at a moment’s notice, and the bass accentuates the deeper recesses of this stellar - in every way - sound. You are experiencing A Light Within, who have an upcoming EP entitled 'Body Matter.'

"Whether in the mournful dirge of 'World Through The Window' or the swell that engulfs the latter half of lead single 'Between Shores,' this Kansas City-based group embody the notion of emotionally charged music. Drawing comparisons to bands like Junius or Deftones,  they nevertheless carve out a niche that is wholly their own within ambient post-metal.(...)"

They also showed of the cover of "Body Matter" which is totally beautiful and shines like a diamond in my eyes:
(c) by A Light Within, used with kind permission

The band is going to do a couple of shows in the upcoming months, the next chance to see them live is already today. Here are the dates:

Apr 25 The Riot Room Kansas City, MO
May 08 Jackpot Music Hall Lawrence, KS
May 16 recordBar Kansas City, MO
Jun 19 The Riot Room Kansas City, MO

For more details about the band make sure to see the band's Facebook page.

If you still did not have the chance to listen to the first single of "Body Matter" I'll include the video for "Between Shores" right here. Besides the fine video with a outstanding visual exposure it features the full album version of the song.

4/23/2015

Manach Seherath searching for guitarist

Manach Seherath is a Symphonic Heavy Metal band based at Naples, Italy. The name of the band means in a dead ancient language 'to draw from the source'. This cryptic phrase, with all that it hides, is well representative of the marriage of heavy rhytms with epic keyboards and mysterious lyrics, which togheter make the trademark of M.S. sound: a modern heavy metal band which doesn't forget the gloomy lessons of the past.


(c) by Manach Seherath, used with kind permission

The band has recently posted a seach for a guitarist on Facebook to complete their line-up again.  The old guitarist Minus Karma left the band because of health problems. Here is what the band wrote regarding the search for a new guitarist:

"We are looking for a guitarist
Do you want to know more?
Send us an email: manach.seherath@virgilio.it "

I'm pretty sure you want to know how the band sounds like before getting in touch with them. Make sure to check the first demo below and to get a copy of the songs since they are available for free download from the Soundcloud account of the band. It surely is fun to use them for a play along and remember to email the band once you've done...

4/21/2015

Reverence Festival 2015 announces line-up and early bird tickets

Yeah, the Open Air season is drawing near. You can feel in my eyes that the emotions and feelings are getting better the more the sun shines and the more time you can spend outside.

So here's the info for the 2015 edition of the Reverence Festival for all the people living in Portugal or nearby to make this summer something special for you. Note that the early bird tickets can help you save some of your precious festival budget and a new feature the "Sunrise Psychedelic Jam" has been installed. There's also a new possibility for accommodation available if you need a bit of luxury at this point.

On August 27th, 28th and 29th Reverence festival returns to Valada, Portugal, to offer up another weekender of quality psychedelia. This monster line-up showcases acts from the stoner, grunge, shoegaze and doom scene, with more acts to be announced in the coming weeks.

Update 2015/07/06: If you want to have the quickest overview on this festival I suggest you to watch the video below. It presents the 2015 edition line-up along with some nice video impressions from the camping grounds, festival visitors, some stage impressions and the nice surroundings of the festival place in a short 2 minute video. A longer video showing a more detailed view on the 2014 edition can be found at the very end of this article (just scroll down to the end of the text).

Update 2015/07/02: The line-up still grows! This looks like it will be a massively valueable event to visit.
Recently added to the already diverse line-up is the cemented folk rock band Sean Riley & The Slow Riders, also performing will be heavy doom rockers, Samsara Blues Experiment, and legendary stalwarts The Jon Spencer Blues Explosion, who continually push the line in experimentation.

Update 2015/05/21: New bands have been added to the line-up: UFOMAMMUT, BIZARRA LOCOMOTIVA, 10.000 RUSSOS, DEAD GHOSTS

(c) by Reverence Festival, used with kind permission


Reverence Festival is somewhat of a marathon, where hardcore fans can bask in Valada’s Summer heat as late as 6am. This year they’ll debut their ‘Sunrise Psychedelic Jam’ which will see members of various bands on the bill play together while the sun rises over the river.

UK psych breakthroughs The Horrors headline with Californian doom legends Sleep, at two ends of this hyperspecific spectrum, these giants of their genres perfectly summarise the Reverence sound pallet.

French post-rock heroes Alcest also star at the top of the bill next to Amon Düül II, the German outfit largely considered to be one of the founders of the Krautrock scene and a seminal influence on its development. It’s with bands like these that not only prove Reverence to be multi-cultural in their tastes, but also true to the scene in which they’ve mastered.

Ex Brian Jonestown Massacre, Joel Gion & The Primary Colours also head up the powerhouse weekender with transcendental psych soundscapes and blistering walls of feedback, whilst Ukrainian rockers Stoner Jesus dish up their own divine take on the genre.

The event takes place in the relaxed surroundings of Parque de Merendas, which runs along the banks of the Tejo river and includes a fluvial beach, picnic areas and coffee shops. Traditional Portuguese food and drinks including vegan and vegetarian will be available, as well as camping facilities adjacent to the festival site with toilets and showers.

Valada is a small picturesque village, in the heart of Cartaxo, famous for agriculture and wine production. Often considered the wine capital of Portugal, Reverence are celebrating by having the local produce available all weekend. Located approximately 60kms inland from Lisbon and 550km from Madrid, easily accessible via train from Lisbon where shuttle buses will be running from nearest station Reguengo to the festival site.

This year Reverence have teamed up with ‘Sleep Em All’, an up-market Portuguese camp accommodation company who specialise in tee-pees and luxury camping facilities. They will be taking over a one acre area of the fifteen acre campsite with luxury tents and caravans, which will be available for €11 to €17 per person per night.

3 DAY TICKETS:
€ 58 from February 13 - 30 June
€ 65 from 1 August - 26 August
€ 70 from 27 August

DAY TICKETS:
€ 35 from 13 February - 4 June
€ 30 from 1 August - 26 August
€ 45 from 27 August

THURSDAY TICKETS:
€ 10 from 13 February - 26 August
€ 27 in August

Tickets: www.blueticket.pt  www.ticketline.sapo.pt 
Reverence: http://www.reverencefestival.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/reverencevalada
Sleep Em All: http://www.sleep-em-all.com

If you would like to check out some of the highlights of Reverence Festival 2014 or just to see how things are set up there see the video below.

4/18/2015

Chasing Dragons looking for new bass guitar player

Leeds-based classic Heavy Metal formation Chasing Dragons have recently announced that their bass guitar player Ant will leave the band. At the same time the band has set up a search for a new bass guitar player.

Here is what the band wrote on Facebook:

"(...) As with all great journeys, sometimes there are unexpected forks in the road... We are very sad to announce that Ant will be leaving our band...(...)

(...) As such we are seeking a bassist and a brother/sister in arms. We're looking for someone who wants to be a musician for life, who is a bassist who not only plays but writes music, who can sing backing vocals, is local to Leeds and has 110% commitment to our band.

They must be able to learn quickly as we need someone who can keep up on the road, be able to fund their share of any band expenses (sadly bands are expensive!), tour extensively (UK & Europe) and commit to at least one rehearsal per week in Leeds.

Think you've got what we're looking for? Please email bookings@chasingdragons.co.uk

Serious applicants only please! If you don't tick the boxes, please don't apply as we need someone who wants this with all their heart. You must also be aged 18+ as a lot of our shows have age restrictions.(...)"

If you haven't heard and/or seen the band in action before I've put the current video for the single "Broken Jaws" up here for viewing. I also reviewed their EP "Checkmate" some time ago, so check it out if you want to know more about the musical style of the band.



4/15/2015

CD Review: Bevar Sea - Bevar Sea

Note:  If you have a own band or project that you think might fit in well here for a review or as a presentation / introduction please drop me a line or two in a E-Mail. Please see my profile for my E-Mail adress. I appreciate new suggestions very much so don't hesitate to contact me. I'm also interested in band news / updates / tourdates so keep the stuff coming. Thanks!

If you're having troubles writing in English please send me a E-Mail in your preferred language or use the free Google Translator to transfer your message to English. I also use that tool, it's of course not perfect but I think it will mostly likely work out for our purposes.

Short Introduction

Bevar Sea are a stoner/doom band that is located in Bangalore / India. The band formed back in late 2010.  They have been influenced by heavy blues-rock of the ‘60s and ‘70s, the band is focused on presenting classic heavy metal exactly the way it should be, by employing an organic, no-frills approach to songwriting and live musicianship. This review talks about the first full length output of the band. At the moment Bevar Sea are working on a brand new record which is schedulded for a release mid 2015.

(c) by Bevar Sea, used with kind permission

Short summary / Player / Purchase Link

If you love the Black Sabbath albums back from the very first days of this legendary band you'll love the music of Bevar Sea,too. To me personally the band took me back to my childhood days when I used to listen to songs like "Sabbath bloody sabbath", "Ironman" or "War pigs". It is a great pleasure for me to see a band is carrying on the torch of these roots of the doom metal.

The even more cool thing is that besides all the traditional sounding elements the band also took care to put in some fresh efforts by mixing in elements from the Stoner music into their songs. Another aspect I like is the length of the tracks. All of the tracks are longer tracks which play around a lot back and forth with the riffs and elements so you have a pure time of enjoyment with them and can the sometimes montone repeat of the stuff even let's you get in deeper into the songs. Well done!

The albums comes for the nice price of only 3 US Dollar as a download. There's also a cool limited edition of 500 physical copies on CD available that comes in a 3 panel digipak with a clear tray in the middle and a 12 page booklet. This version can be purchased for 8 Dollar at the Bandcamp page of the band.

Don't miss out the progress of the band recording the new album. You can keep a eye on them through Facebook or go to Youtube to see some videostuff of the album recordings.


Track by track review

1. The Smiler 
Big, bright riffs kick in rough and hard to this one. A riff change leads over to the vocal driven part. Very dark and sharp vocals give the track a gloomy atmosphere. Much variations put inside in this one like the clear bridge at the middle of the track. Extensive solo sections towards the end. A very compact and fitting open for the album.

2. Abishtu  
A slow bass intro opens up track two. Clear guitars follow before the typical rough guitars jump in and the tempo is altered. The fastest song of the album. In the middle towards the solo section a slight change to clear guitars mixed with distorted parts. The end is set in a similar form as the beginning. The cycle closes again.

(c) by Bevar Sea, used with kind permission

3. Universal Sleeper
More set in the doom tradition this one comes slower and more room for experimenting around with the riff. Vocals are very clear in the beginning but go over to a heavier style as the song progresses. A new riff at the middle gives the track a new direction, pushing forwards to a more experimenting, progressive touch.

4. Mono Gnome  
A very long and epic track with seventeen minutes duration this one closes the album. It starts with a typical riff and form for a Bevar Sea track. A riff-hacker with the hard and dark vocals many parts are set on a longer and montone form but giving the song the room for some experimentation and trying out several variations. Towards the middle of the song seems to morph over with a slower  section but comes back with the main theme afterwards only to change over to the next slower, experimental part with distortion filling a big room of the music. The final chapter is kept on a softer note with clear notes setting a big contrast to the previous very heavy styled song segments. A great way to end this epic song.

4/11/2015

Everlit talk about their way in new lyric video

Everlit are a hardrock band from Philadelphia. They released the lryic video for their new single "A Phoenix Will Rise", off of their upcoming EP, due out on June 20th. The band will be playing their EP release show at Bull Shooters in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and the full band lineup for the show will be announced soon.

The video has a message so they band did choose the preview track for the EP with a certain intention. Ryan Panfil says about the video: "We're excited that A Phoenix Will Rise was the first song we got to share with everyone. It's a story about where we came from but it's also intended for our fans who have or need to overcome things in their own lives."

(c) by Everlit, used with kind permission

To me the video came with a surprise. I wasn't certain about what to expect but keeping in mind that lyric videos can be a strong presentation both in a optical but also a lyrical way this one hooked me up a lot. In fact I did let play the video on repeat once I got the full message of the track and discovered all the fine structures that have been put inside.

The track is very infectious and groovy. It's also a earcatcher since the refrain once it got you won't let you go. But what I love even more is the guitar in the second verse. It gives the track this special kick. Plus there are these changes and different aspects in the vocals that totally got me. Sometimes they are held clear, other sentences are spoken with a special tone and on certain parts you can hear screams that are well placed and fit very well to the lyrics. If you give the full video a run-through (please do so - it's not long. All in all nearly a three minute song.) you'll be rewarded with a message I think everybody should be aware of.

I'll keep a eye on the band that's for sure. If you also want to keep track of the band do so connecting with them through Facebook, Twitter or have a regular look on the band's website.

4/08/2015

CD Review: Light Among Shadows - Welcome...Back!

Note:  If you have a own band or project that you think might fit in well here for a review or as a presentation / introduction please drop me a line or two in a E-Mail. Please see my profile for my E-Mail adress. I appreciate new suggestions very much so don't hesitate to contact me. I'm also interested in band news / updates / tourdates so keep the stuff coming. Thanks!

If you're having troubles writing in English please send me a E-Mail in your preferred language or use the free Google Translator to transfer your message to English. I also use that tool, it's of course not perfect but I think it will mostly likely work out for our purposes.

Short Introduction

Light Among Shadows are a female fronted symphonic metal band from the south of Spain. In the past years the band released two full length albums entitled "At the Gates of Dawn" in 2011 and only one year later "Welcome...Back!" and toured with both records in the meantime. The style of the band is inspired by fairy tales and horror stories.

At the moment the band is working on the third record with María Barragán on vocals.
This review talks about the second release of the band named "Welcome...back!" with Tatjana Klee, the female voice of the band performing the vocal tracks on the songs of the first two albums.

(c) by Light Among Shadows, used with kind permission

Summary / Player / Purchase-Link

I like albums like these very much. While they are very smphonic and detailed bands like Light Among Shadows keep the heavyness straight in which means that the power doesn't get lost in all the details and sometimes epicness of the tracks.

What we have here is a very riff-oriented album with very outworked vocals on all tracks. You can hear and feel that a lot of time has been spent making the tracks sound perfect. The drums are pushing hard forward with gives the album the extra power. Luckily enough it's not only a album full of smashing tracks but also has a lot of softer moments to offer and never misses out the melody to keep the tracks heart-touching. All in all the album comes with much diversity and often changing parts that can be found in each song.

Please check out this album and if you like go and buy this record to support bands like this one and to have a diamond in your collection that will shine on through moments in life when there's darkness around you. It's well worth it.

The album can be purchased in digital format in stores like Amazon or itunes. Also make sure to have a listen to it first in the Spotify player below. The video for the title track is also one everyone should have a look at. It tells the story of the album compressed in one video so it's a short film which is highly recommended by me and can be seen below in the track by track section.




Track-by-Track review

Welcome...Back!
Very heavy and compact start of the album, much riff-along to the double-bass attack. The refrain comes straight from the heart. A perfect kick in for the album.




Children of the Underworld
Riff-oriented midtempo rocker. The refrain pushes up the speed and makes one want to sing along. Think this could turn out very well on a live show.

When you close your eyes
A balladesque intro followed up by a riff storm intermezzo start this one. A softer bridge leads over to a riff-hacking stomping track. The beautifull vocals are giving it a warm touch. This track is very diverse and shows a wide range of emotions in it. Music speaks out so much more than words could ever do...

Homecoming
A spoken, soft dreaming intermezzo giving the listener a moment to take a break. I like it when a album has parts like this that give you a little pause before the journey goes on.

Of wonder and horror
It's a strong, riff pounding track with stretched vocals and a slightly progressive touch in it. This track needs some time to sink in, so a re-listen is recommended to get the full point in this one.

Through the maze of thorns
A song with a powerfull, hard intro going over to a softer first verse and a pushing refrain. This piece of music has many changes between soft and hard parts in them while the vocals come in majestic and also some spoken verses are inside which surprises the listener. Great solos here. A long and very intensive track.

(c) by Light Among Shadows, used with kind permission

Lost in a sea of nightmares
A powerfull start followed by softer but a bit reverbed vocal parts. It goes over back to the intro rhythm then. This song plays a lot with diversity in the vocals which seem to fit to the theme of the lyrics so it fits very well here.

Mirage
Some time for relaxing again. A soft spoken bridge leading over to the next song.

Dreamshaping
The intro starts soft and the guitars play around with the songs theme. A rougher refrain while the rest comes with a slightly balladesque feeling to it. The end has a effect sort of a redemption feeling to the writer of these lines. A warmly welcomed feeling.

The world behind the mask
The push-in goes fast with a soft going-over while the refrain presents in a slow and stomping way. The feeling overall in this track is somewhat ghostly with many fast changing parts in them. The end comes as a overburning experience which gives more redemption feeling while the end is soft and slowly fading away leaving one behind with many thoughts...

A tarnished mirror
Time for another break! Another soft intermission with dreaming notes in them. The drums are kept very hard and cold on "A tarnished mirror".

Back to where you've never been
We start with a compact riff before vocals and drums are the only things that can be heard. The riffs are set very hard here and the track is catchy. The refrain is outworked a lot with many layers of vocals all around. You'll surely remember this one once heard.

Alone
A soft start and the song moving forwards slowly. The changes between soft and hard parts are arranged epicly with a outstanding solo in here. The vocals are also set in a epic direction while the tonality overall is set on heavyness with a focus on working out the details a lot. 

4/03/2015

CD Review: The Dry Mouths - Two Months (easter gift inside)

Note:  If you have a own band or project that you think might fit in well here for a review or as a presentation / introduction please drop me a line or two in a E-Mail. Please see my profile for my E-Mail adress. I appreciate new suggestions very much so don't hesitate to contact me. I'm also interested in band news / updates / tourdates so keep the stuff coming. Thanks!

If you're having troubles writing in English please send me a E-Mail in your preferred language or use the free Google Translator to transfer your message to English. I also use that tool, it's of course not perfect but I think it will mostly likely work out for our purposes.

It's easter again, time to celebrate the (hopefully) upcoming spring time of the year.
As it is already a little tradition over here at the Metalunderdogs blog we are sort of giving away something so we can celebrate together.

Short Introduction

This year, thanks to the guys in The Dry Mouths we can enjoy the full band release catalogue totally for free. The band describes itself on Bandcamp as a "Alternative Rock band from Almeria, Spain. Their music is a mixture between the rock of the 90′, stoner and the experimentation, leaving itself to notice in the first listening influences like Nirvana, Tool, Mogwai, Explosions In The Sky, Black Sabbath or Pink Floyd."
All the four recordings of the band can be downloaded for free from Bandcamp.
This review talks about the newest release of the band the EP "Two Months" which was released at the beginning of 2015.

(c) by The Dry Mouths, used with kind permission

Summary / Player / Purchase Link 

What I like most about the band is that they dare to make things differently. It's not the same odd song structure's they restrict themselves to. They do try out a lot and always look for new ways so the music never get's monotone. Plus all the artworks having something of their own, it's stuff that put's a own finishing note to each recording.

On the "Two Months" album the band is keeping things very straight forward and very hard and heavy. Nevertheless they've also used the room for some experimentation so you'll notice some unusual stuff in the music also on this newest addition to the band's release list.

Since they've set up the download as a pay what you want option you can also decide to give a little back for what you've taken by handing over some coins to the band when asked at the download page.
You can also get physical copies of "Two months" as well as for all the other three releases of The Dry Mouths. Just check the detailed descriptions at the page of each recording on Bandcamp.

In addition the band has set up a download mirror for all the albums in various quality levels on their website. Please consider to spread the word about'em in return.

The band is going to play the next show on

Apr 18th
La Boca Club
Madrid, Spain

Also make sure to keep an eye of the further band activities via Facebook on the band's website.



Track-by-Track review

Tour P-2
A powerfull beginning for the record. Starts with powerfull chords, then goes over to a forth and backward moving riff and rhythm structure. Yet the song spreads a cool feeling with it.

Tea Pex
A compact and hard riff hits this one up. It moves over to a softer section just to return back to the harder structure. Followed up by changing moments between rougher and softer sections. The Solo section is kept with very high notes.

Party & Son
A slower beginning starts this midtempo number. The tempo speeds up with a cool drum fill pattern. The refrain spreads a relaxed feeling with a different speed. Another drum pattern - very diverse. You can feel the band has some fun playing around with their music.

(c) by The Dry Mouths, used with kind permission


Cold Mind
I love the counting in of the song! A rough and very compact track but the structure makes it a cool time to listen to it. Surely one of my favorites of the band so far.

Intromental / Info Mental IV
The last song starts with a softer touch. The band shows it's more technical side on this one. The rougher edge is presented in the second part followed up by some more softer notes the band is jamming upon. Part three holds again more roughness with very powerful chords and guitar leads put inside. Some classic metal riffs towards the end before some notes leave one with the hope behind that there will be more to come of this great band.