1/29/2017

Darkwell take us deeper into Metropolis cosmos

Some time ago we had a announcement saying that the female fronted Austrian Gothic band Darkwell will be back with a new record that will see a return of former female vocalist Alexandra Pittracher. Some time has passed and the album is available since some time via Massacre Records.

The cover of the new Darkwell album "Moloch", (c) by Jasmin Elisabeth Wanner, used with kind permission
These days the band is back with a brand new video for the title track "Moloch". The content sticks to the Metropolis topic (Fritz Langs's fantastic 1927 movie "Metropolis") and can be seen as the prequel to first video single the band put out entittled "Yoshiwara".

As for me the female voice comes out brilliantly on this one, it's very dominating, multi-layered yet it doesn't ruin the track or overloads it. The drums are pushing the track forward and always seem to give it new drive when things seem to come to a end. It's all accompanied with the raw and cutting guitars which are held in a sharp and hard toned way.

Make sure to look up more details like show dates of the band via their web-presences on Facebook and check out the other band videos on their Youtube channel. 

1/23/2017

Kepler Ten share positive feelings throughout the change of Time and Tide

As the times change so does the tide. It all just seems to be coming and going. So does life look at least to me. Kepler Ten seemed to have picked up the topic with their latest track "Time and Tide" and it's not only a song of thinking out loud but also packed with immensive power showing how much three musicians are able to put out of sheer musical expression and sharing positive thoughts and feelings this way. It's uplifting for me.

Steve Hales, Drummer of Kepler Ten who wrote the lyrics for this song, says this about the track:

‘No matter how in control of our lives we feel when it comes to the passing of time we are merely passengers. Our journey is flagged along the way by important personal moments such as falling in love but metaphorically the same powerful tide that brings two people together can in the blink of an eye tear them apart (in the song through illness). Whether you call it fate, probability or just dumb luck it's still outside of our control and there is no way that we can ever stop the clock or turn it back for a second chance. The song is sad but the message is not. Don't take anything for granted and make the absolute best of those good times. Fly their flags high!’

The cover for the video single "Time and Tide" by Kepler Ten, (c) by Kepler Ten, used with kind permission
Kepler Ten’s debut album ‘Delta-v’ was mixed and mastered by John Mitchell and will be released on February 10th 2017 via White Star Records.

Make sure to keep a close eye on the band on their homepage or connect through Facebook with them.  

1/20/2017

OrckOut take us "Far away from all" to reach our Destination

Midtempo thrash can offer great tunes. It doesn't always need to be fast. Brazil Stoner Thrashers OrckOut have put out a fresh tune of their latest EP "Destination" with strong and clear rhythm which keeps the music in a sharp style and tonality. It's easier to go through the structure of the track this way.

In addition the dark and rough vocals are something that sticks in the mind of the listener. The music holds a little surprise towards the end: it's rounded out by a extensive and outworked solo section something which you wouldn't have expected after the previous form of the video single.

If you'd like to hear the full EP click on to Soundcloud. Make sure to follow the band further through their website or a like on Facebook.

The EP cover for OrckOut's "Destination" was designed by OrckOut guitarist Eder Munhoz, (c) by OrckOut, used with kind permission

1/17/2017

Northern Lines demonstrate own idea of instrumental prog music

Some bands work out instrumental tracks that can impress you with it's simple structure yet the track never becomes boring also it has a long duration.

Northern Lines, who are located in Italy have created such a piece of music and currently are handing it out on a pay what you want basis on their Bandcamp page. The fine thing is that it's surely progressive rock/metal but that it's listenable on such a direct and easy basis. I think that's what not many band's have to offer and make this band worth checking out.

The track is taken of the upcoming album "The Fearmonger" which will be released this month. Make sure to keep a eye on the band via Facebook or Twitter so you won't miss out about the release details. As for the first you can already have a look upon the cover which give's a short glimpse upon the concept story of the record which will talk about death/dying.

The cover of Northern Lines album cover for "The Fearmonger", (c) by Northern Lines, used with kind permission

1/13/2017

Live Review: Monster Truck / The Dirty Nil / Billy Talent Emslandarena Lingen 10.12.2016

What a night! Three bands that gave the fans of the sold out venue what they really wanted: Rock 'n' Roll at it's best. I think that's the best proof that the show was worth the money the people spent on it.

The Dirty Nil seem to have been added the last minute to the package. I was pretty surprised to see the band's banner on stage since I didn't hear before that a third band would rock out on that evening. They put out a typical modern punk rock format with their music and opened with a pounding fist of songs. The audience that was numerous up to that point already warmly welcomed their offer.

The Dirty Nil Live in Lingen 2016, (c) by Jan Starcke, used with kind permission
I think the people eagerly waiting for the Billy Talent show could somehow connect easily to the band's sound. The vocalist ripped up his voice roughly on most tracks so agression came out clearly while the drums layed down a pumping constanty to the sound and the guitars having razor sharp riffs with them. The band had a good mix of tracks but kept it fast for most of the time, something that was a good choice in my eyes. With a loud and rude opening and few but good lights on stage the evening was going to start out great.

Monster Truck were the best band of the night in my ears. They had in contrast to both of the other bands a different approach in any way. The most significant one was the sound. They decided to put the volume down, something that I love when it comes to live shows. That little bit of volume they cut was replaced with a beautifull sound spectrum. All instruments came through clear and direct and I think this sound was the
best I encountered in a long time.

Monster Truck put a highlight with their sound at the liveset in Lingen 2016, Photo (c) by Jan Starcke, used with kind permission

The soundstructure provides space for warmth, details in the performance and most of all it gave the possibility to enjoy each and every riff like having a good meal on which you spend a lot of time to taste every little nuance that is inside. The band opened up with a couple of faster tunes before they changed to a more slower and progressive format and also included a half-ballad in their set. This may have been too lengthy for some people especially when it came to the solo sections but the band once again changed the style and closed their set with rougher tracks that more people in the crowd enjoyed. After all I think the band was able to make some people open up their minds and discover their sounds.

Finally it was time for Billy Talent to rock the packed house. The first third came around filled with classic tracks while the new songs had to wait until they had their time. "Afraid of Heights" was my favorite they played on the show along with a clear statement on the meaning at the beginning. The show was wrapped in a nice stage setup that included a monsterous backdrop of the album artwork that was filled with lights and also had a second floor were the musicians placed themselves later in the set.

Billy Talent in his typical pose captured live in Lingen 2016, Photo (c) by Jan Starcke, used with kind permission

My personal favorite was "Ghost ship of cannibal rats" a razor sharp number with the typical punk attitude in it. As for me it's a highly symbolical way of saying how today's society looks like. The band showed some heart and decided to give one euro of each sold ticket on this event to a social organisation for people in need. It shows that the band has not forgotten where they are coming from. The audience was wild on the show and it's not often that you can spot moshpits and pogo in cities like Lingen. Billy Talent returned after the set for some additional tracks and left a happy crowd in the thought that this was the first real proper heavy music event to grace the Emslandarena in Lingen. Thanks for the great show and the fine memories to all the bands that played on this evening!

1/09/2017

Book Review: Don't forget the business in the music business - Antonio Ponce (2016)

A book that keeps it short and instead of too much anecdotes it's filled to the brim with useful instructions and hints for bands who have passed the first basic steps.

The cover of Antonio Ponce's hintbook - Don't forget the business in the music business, (c) by Antonio Ponce, used with kind permission


Summary

Having a first look at this publications reveals that it won't be a long read. All in all it comes along with 78 pages of information. Don't let this keep you away from having a eye at it. The author knew that time is always short so he kept the words sharp and precise. He only focusses on what's really worth having a closer look at.

This said it should be mentioned that this hintbook is intended to bands that have already passed the first steps. You should have your instruments ready, learned how to play it properly and have assembled a bunch of people together that really can stick with each other. Songwriting is only touched slightly when it comes to things like sound and style. That's exactly where this business guide starts out.

You'll get direct tipps that can save you a lot of money and the boring surfing around and wasting time to figure out all the basic steps on how to lay down your basics for a proper band. Some chapters contain more information while others are held shorter. One thing was great for me: the book is also a good read for your own real life. It's of use not only to musicians but also to other people following their dreams...

It should also be said that these pages won't make you a superstar or anything like that. I think there is nothing like that around. A book also can never perform the steps for you that are necessary. If you keep that in mind you'll be satistied with your investement.

The only thing I would add in a second edition is something like a calculation sheet in a electronic format or at least a short example directly in the book. This would round out the chapter of keeping a close eye on the tight budget perfectly. It could help as a start you have directly at your hand because reading something is fine but how to turn it into real action? Anwer: here is a sheet to give you a proper start.

Purchase-Link 

Since the book comes along for only 5 Dollar as a pdf file via the website of AP Jones Publishing I think it's a good starting point to bands that always have to trouble with money. But who doesn't have trouble with this in this world we live in? So don't be afraid, you are not the only one. As a alternative you can also pick it up as a Kindle file through Amazon.

If you want a copy as a real book you'll need to put in more money, it's available for around 20 Dollars on the website of the publisher AP Jones Publishing.

Contact Data

You can get in touch with the author directly using Facebook.

1/05/2017

Malice support fight against human trafficking on upcoming US tour

I love to see band's that say something against the bad things that are happening in our world. They use their power to bring topics to the table that many people surely would like to be kept in silence or ignored.

One of them are american true metal heads Malice who have announced to play a charity show in Las Vegas to raise money and awareness in the fight against human trafficking on their next touring cycle. Read the announcement to find out more about this and what you can expect of the upcoming Malice shows from bassist RayMan James directly:

"In a couple of weeks, Malice will bring the fight for heavy metal to the southwestern US on their "Slaying the Dragon" tour.


The tourposter for the "Slaying the Dragon Tour" from Malice, (c) by Malice, used with kind permission


We will be playing brand new songs off the band's upcoming 2nd album such as "Slaying the Dragon", "SwordMetal" and "Wheels of Steel", as well as songs that Malice fans have grown accustom to hearing at the live shows from our 2014 debut album "Triumph And Glory".

Along the way, Malice will be playing a charity show in Las Vegas to raise money and awareness in the fight against human trafficking, a cause that the members of Malice have been very passionate and outspoken about.

In addition, we will also be filming the new Malice music video while on tour. Malice is pleased to announce that power metal kings CAGE will be joining them for two shows on the tour, in their hometown of San Diego and the charity fund raiser against human trafficking in Las Vegas where they will showcase songs from their latest 7th album "Ancient Evil". This is a call to arms for all soldiers of steel to join Malice in the fight for pure heavy metal! Let the Battle begin."

"Slaying The Dragon" Southwest US tour dates

1/20/17 - House of Metal (Malone's) - Santa Ana, CA (with GRAHAM BONNET)
1/21/17 - Frogees - Apple Valley, CA (with KANTATION)
1/22/17 - The Lexington - Downtown Los Angeles, CA
1/23/17 - Brick by Brick - San Diego, CA (with CAGE)
1/25/17 - The Dive Bar - Las Vegas, NV (with CAGE)
1/27/17 - Club X - Salt Lake City, UT
2/13/17 - The Cabooze - Minneapolis, MN (with LORDI)

For updates make sure to see the homepage or Facebook site of the band.

Here's a video of the band in case you don't know them and / or to shorten the waiting time 'till the tour starts.


1/01/2017

CD Review: Alluvion - Reverberations (Melodic Metal/2016)

A hefty EP incorparting as many styles of the heavy genre as one could imagine.

Short Introduction

Alluvion are a metal band located at Fredericksburg, Virginia. They mix elements of metal, rock, prog-rock, and shoegaze into there own brand of music. Alluvion has been a band for about 10 years recording several albums and performing regionally. The "Reverberations" EP has been released in October 2016.

Alluvions's "Reverberations" EP cover, (c) by Alluvion, used with kind permission
Summary

This release surely speaks out to the one's being open to travel between various sounds.You can take this as a sign that the music never get's boring or one-dimensional throughout the whole duration. But there's even more variation in them.

What I'd like to say is that the EP changes it's mood without warning. While the EP starts up rather epicly with the longer track "Exodus" it cracks you down quickly already with the second song "Heel of the Boot". It feels as if you're sitting in a rollercoaster. At one moment it was all fine and good but just around the corner the heavyness just kicks straight into the face. The next round goes to the title track that provides you with a moment to take a breath just before another ride start's with "Drop It" but this time more midtempo. It's the song with the most positive note on the whole record. "Critters" gives you a massive "kick-me-out" feeling with it's heavyness once again. Anyway I guess many of you'll want to follow the band once they'v had taste of it.

The cool thing in the band's style is that they added some shoegaze to their typical metal sound. If you like that style but prefer it to not dominate the band's sound with it's typical slowness and multi-layered song structures but instead have more typical metal elements with the music I think Alluvion's "Reverberations" are the definite place for you to check out. Just check the songs "Exodus" and the ending of "Critters" for more details on this.

Purchase-Link and Album stream

The whole package comes free of charge. I'd like to ask you to give some bucks if you like it because making music ain't free. Artists have a lot of costs to cover just to entertain us the way they do so giving back is never a wrong thing.

Besides that this is the first download I came across that comes with MP4 files in them. Those nice goodies are short live video clips the band shared as preview items on their Facebook page. They show the live power and atmosphere of the band so they are a nice addition to the release and give a idea if you consider going to one of Alluvion's live shows (please do show up to give them your support).

On my Smartphone the cover as well as the lyrics were integrated into the mp3 files so they were displayed automatically upon selecting them with my player app. That was a cool surprise to me to have everything at hand with just one single click. The lyrics are rough and direct and speak clearly. If you want to have a message straight - this band provides it. Here's the EP stream for you to quickly check it out.


Contact Data

The band is up for contact on Facebook as well as on Youtube and Instagram.