Saturday, February 2, 2013

SISTAR 19 - "Gone Not Around Any Longer"

Over the past few weeks I've gotten a lot of requests to review this and that, and if you were one of those who asked, my answer has always been "I'll try", because no matter how much I want to write about all the great music I've been listening to, I'm going through a really rough patch with school and just this week I had to go to class all week with a flu and throat and ear infections left and right. I was hoping to get some "work" done on the blog over the weekend which is why I started listening to all the stuff I missed out on over the past few weeks and I got to the new SISTAR 19 EP when they came. The tears.

Sometimes I think my reviews are far too personal, especially when I read other blogs and critics and I get jealous at how well they compartmentalize and just go straight to the music, but then I remember that I always complain about acts not showing enough sincerity and emotion. If I don't show you guys, if I don't tell you, what I felt and how those emotions came, then there's a very slim chance that my review won't be as effective as it could've been. If I can't move myself, and show you that I was moved, how am I supposed to even begin trying to move you.

So yes, the SISTAR 19 EP made me cry. Twice. You probably don't know this, but I'm the type of person who, out of both necessity and years of trying, has forged a kind of mask. I don't cry unless it's serious, it's always when no one's looking, and no matter how depressed or stressed out I am, on the outside I've made myself out to be perfectly fine. I don't talk about my problems with my friends or my parents, I've held in majority of my frustrations and self-esteem issues, and I know it's dangerous and I shouldn't be holding things in, which is why I started writing.

The main reason why this made me cry was because "Gone Not Around Any Longer" is a really, really good EP, plain and simple. Call it a shallow reason, but honestly I think it's the only reason why I'd ever cry over the music I listen to. Of course it was enforced by the fact that I've been having a really hard time lately, but like I said I may not be able to compartmentalize when I write, but I do a ridiculously good job of it in real life. The fact that this was a good EP, the fact that this is such a beautiful EP, was what made the dam break open.

As a whole, I really love the light-hearted sound of the EP because for once it's a sound I would definitely imagine a bunch of young-ish girls to pursue. It's youthful, it's fun and light-hearted, but at the same time it is sexy, and it is feminine. This is the part between innocent little girl and woman in her late 20's/early 30's that pop tends to forget, or can't really capture accurately because it's neither of the polar opposites, but which also happens to be a pretty big part of fan bases. But from what I've heard on this EP, it looks like SISTAR 19 had no problem capturing that playful femininity and delivering it with conviction, cohesion, and a sense of effortlessness.

When I first heard "Gone Not Around Any Longer" the song, it was a pleasant surprise more than anything. I had read some comments on it last night and the negativity of them only made my surprise even more striking. It sounds very Brave Brothers, but this is one of those "once in a blue moon" times when he manages to find an extremely effective compromise between the familiar and the fresh, as far as his previous productions are concerned. For the most part, the selling point of this song is how he took all those makeshift "jazz" elements we've heard before, those familiar loops, that trumpet he seemed to be attached to all of last year, and even those high-pitched "ooh ooh"'s, but he didn't weigh them down even more with a very intense melody like the one in "Alone". Instead, he went one step further and actually gave the melody some spring to its step.

The result is a song with depth, with both a mysterious air and a cheery disposition -- it's feminine and sexy without being flat or boring. You get a song with some really gorgeous instruments like that crisp drum kit that literally made me melt, and that gutsy but graceful electric guitar, all delivered with effortlessly musical dynamics which make for some really heart-stopping but natural transition. And on top of all that there's this gorgeously put-together and thoughtfully delivered melody that gives the song power all while reenforcing the over-all graceful facade. Though it would still be outrageous to compare this song to heaven’s gift to man kind in the form of Craig David’s “Fill Me In”, first because that song is immortal and second because they’re two different songs with different destinations, they’re similar in one thing -- “Gone Not Around Any Longer”, especially the chorus, is probably the closest recent K-Pop has gotten to capturing and successfully delivering that nonchalant, “cool” but urgent and confident sound which “Fill Me In” is the epitome of.

I never thought I'd live to see the day a Brave Brothers production would stun me as much as After School's "Because Of You" did, but it looks like I have.

As much as I now worship "Gone Not Around Any Longer" for being a brilliant piece of pop music, it was ultimately "A Girl In Love" that drove the album's point home. I find it quite ironic that the most light-hearted song on the album was the one that drew the most emotions from me, but that's exactly why it's my favorite song. I don't know how many times I've said this, but really, the hardest thing to do is to deliver a simple song well, because a lot of people take them for granted and end up just doing an average job. "A Girl In Love" is the complete opposite, because it's such a simple, almost generic song, but you can hear that everyone who had a hand in it took it seriously.

What I really like about the song is how you can actually hear everything going on without putting too much thought into things, from the melody to the tambourines and the synth lines. But instead of the quietness turning into a competition between the elements, they do the complete opposite and bring out the strengths in each other. The gracefulness of the melody gives way to the texture of the tambourines and the sophistication the loops are going for.

What ultimately convinced me though is the fact that while this song was clearly taken seriously, it only served to make the over-all sound and atmosphere even more fun and light-hearted. Because everyone knew what to do, very minimal concentration was required for the basic "what note do I play", so everyone turned to the next question, "how do I hit this note". It's that kind of mindset that makes for a good song, because like I always say, in pop it's not about what you do, because majority of the songs are pretty much all the same, it's about how you do it. This isn’t a pretentious song, it’s exactly what you hear it as, and it doesn’t give off that air of trying too hard -- whatever depth or beauty you get from the song is a natural byproduct. This, my friends, is called chemistry. Chemistry between the elements, the instruments, the arrangement and melody, and with the delivery.

Honestly I thought that “Ma Boy” would destroy the momentum of the album, because from what I could remember it didn’t have that gentle intensity to it -- even if it has that fun element, the hook was a lot heavier and I recalled it having a different over-all feel from the two new tracks. But when I actually listened to it in relation to the rest of the EP, I was surprised when the real effect was the exact opposite of what I thought it would be. “Ma Boy” works with the other two songs precisely because of my reasons for thinking it wouldn’t. It’s a lot heavier most probably because it was produced before they even thought of putting it on the EP, but it’s that weight and intensity, coupled with the playful element present throughout all three songs, that gives the EP some dynamics. If the previous two songs were more concentrated on the “how”, on the process and the elements, “Ma Boy” goes ahead and delivers the punch for the whole EP. This is how you do dynamism right, not only with conviction, but with cohesion to boot.

I never thought I would say this about a release by SISTAR, or any division of, but if I were to sum up this EP in one word, I’d say it’s masterful. It’s masterful pop music, the kind that doesn’t claim to be “intellectual”, but in having all the qualities of the epitome of a pop release, becomes intellectual anyway. It is in these kinds of EPs that I get proof of the depth of songs that most people deem “shallow”.


Arc & Stones - Self-Titled EP

Every generation thinks it has discovered something new and different.  What was blues became rock 'n roll.  What was rock 'n roll became rock.  What was rock became classic rock then became new wave then alternative rock with plenty of little steps in between.  The genre categories have become so sliced and diced that you might as well say each band that has its own sound is a genre sub-category.  Yet, every band's sound is rooted in the past.  There is no Steve Vai without Jimi Hendrix.  There is no Jimi Hendrix without Bo Diddley.  There is no Bo Diddley without Muddy Waters.  There is no Muddy Waters without Robert Johnson. So, when four early twenty year old guys from Brooklyn, New York in a group named Arc & Stones, call themselves an "alternative rock band" with a "new progressive sound," I take the description with a grain of salt.  I mark such hype up to naivete and youthful enthusiasm. 

Sure enough my cynicism was validated as I listened to their first and only release, a five track self-titled extended play.  Arc & Stones does not provide a "new progressive sound," it provides some of the greatest sounding classic hard rock anthems and ballads I've heard since the late 1980's.  This is quite an amazing feat when you consider that not one of the band members was even alive when their sound was at its popularity peak.  For this young "alternative band" it might just prove to be a great place to start a rock music career.

The first track on the EP, "Silence",  is anything but quiet. Singer Dan Pellarin (he is also known to pick up a guitar or pick at the keyboards) has the vocal chops of an early Steven Tyler.  They drip with sweet rock emotion.  He just brings it, not just on "Silence", but on all five cuts on the EP. Lead guitarist Ben Cramer ably negotiates the quiet and loud blues-based pleas while bassist Eddy Bayes and drummer Joe Doino pound out the rhythm.  The remaining four tracks, in order, "Say Goodbye", "Let Me Down", "She's Mine" and "Rise", follow a similar curve with slowly building tensions that burst into raucous anthems and ballads of gargantuan proportions.

Significant credit for Arc & Stones' recorded sound must go to a non-band member, Jeremy Griffith, who produced the recordings.  His guiding midas touch is best displayed on "Let Me Down",  with its vocal hooks that build until a choir envelops the listener.   Don't get the idea that this band is all production.  These guys jointly write song lyrics. The classic hard rock throwbacks thrown down do not sound dated. Despite it not being a new sound, this rock music sound is timeless. 

- Old School

Friday, February 1, 2013

OCTOBER TIDE - Album Details and Fest Appearances

Swedish Melodic Gloomlords OCTOBER TIDE have revealed the album artwork cover for the band's upcoming full-length effort entitled Tunnel Of No Light.
Comprising of eight sorrowful, doom-laden tracks, Tunnel Of No Light sees the band going towards a somewhat more straightforward yet heavier direction but still very much keeping the traditional OCTOBER TIDE sound.

Tunnel of No Light is OCTOBER TIDE's fourth full-length album and first for Pulverised Records, who the band recently signed with. An early 2013 release date is expected. 

OCTOBER TIDE has announced appearances at this year's Depressive Fest in Moscow and Germany's Protzen Open Air. Dates and details are listed below:

Depressive Fest - April 13th, 2013 @ Moscow Hall - Moscow, Russia w/ Fen, Ahab 
& The Devils Blood - WEB 

Protzen Open Air - June 21st - 23rd, 2013 - Protzen, Germany w/Cryptopsy, Master & more

1) Of Wounds To Come
2) Our Constellation
3) Emptiness Fulfilled
4) Caught In Silence
5) The Day I Dissolved
6) Watching The Drowners
7) In Hopeless Pursuit
8) Adoring Ashes


Alexander Högbom (Volturyon, Spasmodic) - Vocals
Fredrik Norrman (Uncanny, ex-Katatonia) - Guitars
Mattias Norrman (Dellamorte, ex-Katatonia, ex-Interment) - Bass
Emil Alstermark  - Guitars
Robin Bergh (Aoria, Palefeather) - Drums


Mos Generator to support Saint Vitus on European Tour; Interview Opportunities Available

Ripple Music and MOS GENERATOR are pleased to announce the heavy rockin' power trio's support spot on SAINT VITUS' European tour beginning March 5th on Koln, Germany and ending March 27th in Hamburg. Touring in support of October 2012 Ripple Music release Nomads, the band's classy 'n catchy brand of heavy rock is sure to leave audiences with mouths agape and ears ringing.

The introspective and dynamically heavy Nomads marked the triumphant return of MOS GENERATOR after a three year hiatus. Fusing the band's trademark sound of explosive heavy dissonance with equally beautiful melodic passages, the Port Orchard trio is giving Hard Rock fans a 40-minute rock n' roll treat that was five years in the making. Available on CD, vinyl LP, and digital download at Nomads is unequivocally recommended for fans of Mountain, Black Sabbath, Corrosion of Conformity, Judas Priest, Monster Magnet, Deep Purple, Queens of the Stone Age, Kiss.

Check out the video for "Lonely One Kenobi" off of Nomads at this location.


*Mos Generator only
2/1 Flights Pub - Everett, WA  
2/9 The Breakroom - Bremerton, WA  
2/23 Club 21 - Portland, OR  
3/1 Chop Suey - Seattle, WA
3/5 Cologne, Germany @ Underground 
3/6 Berlin, Germany @ C-club 
3/7 Dresden, Germany @ Beatpol 
3/8 Arnhem, Holland @ Willemeen 
3/9 Paris, France @ La Maroquinerie 
3/10 Vosselaar, Belgium @ Biebob 
3/11 Brighton, England @ The Haunt 
3/12 Southampton, England @ The Cellar 
3/13 Birmingham, England @ O2 Academy 2 
3/14 Glasgow, Scotland @ The Cathouse 
3/15 Newcastle, England @ Northumbria Uni 
3/16 Pwhelli, Wales @ Hammerfest 
3/17 London, England @ The Garage 
3/18 Rouen, France @ Le 106 
3/19 Esch-sur-alzette, Luxembourg @ Kulturfabrik 
3/20 Lyon, France @ Le Ninkasi Kao 
3/21 Winterthur, Switzerland @ Salzhaus 
3/22 Vienna, Austria @ Szene 
3/23 Bologna, Italy @ Zr 
3/24 Milano, Italy @ The Tunnel 
3/25 Nürnberg, Germany @ Rockfabrik 
3/26 Aschaffenburg, Germany @ Colos-sal 
3/27 Hamburg, Germany @ Logo

Wiht - The Harrowing of the North

As I've mentioned before, I have been seriously derelict in my duties when it comes to listening to new music. It's a new year and time to remedy the situation. One of my favorite things to do when I have a ton of new stuff sitting around in my in box is to pick something at random and let it play while I navigate the brutal job market in search of work. So today I closed my eyes, moved the mouse around and it landed on Wiht's "The Harrowing of the North."

Turns out this is a good soundtrack for scrolling through endless job listings on Wiht are a heavy trio from Leeds, UK specializing in space ritual style instrumentals. Actually, I should say "were." According to their bio the split up about a year ago but are releasing their final recordings, two long ass jams that clock in at around half an hour. "The Harrowing of The North" and, also according to the bio, "contains 8 movements which follow the raids from their beginnings in 1069- when the King massacred Yorkshire’s people and destroyed the land ensuring it held no economic or cultural worth and remained subservient under his rule- to his remorseful deathbed nearly 20 years later." Dude! That's heavy! Musically it's very heavy. Parts sound like something off the first album by The Sword and others remind me of Ufomammut. So if you're into a Black Sabbath meets Pink Floyd thing, that's good news for you. The other song is called "Orderic Vitalis" and is dedicated to an outspoken chronicler "who, though loyal to his king, was outraged at his cruelty and condemned him in his writings." BRO))))! Musically, it continues in search of space.

It's too bad these guys broke up but I'm glad they are releasing these jams, and they certainly helped pass the time during a frustrating afternoon. With played their last show in March 2012 at Desertfest with heavy hitters like Corrosion of Conformity, Orange Goblin, Ancestors and Black Cobra. Not a bad exit strategy.


Thursday, January 31, 2013

Melodic Death Thrashers CHARIOTS OF THE GODS Unleash New Music Video 'Tides of War'; Performing At Drummondville Metal Fest V

L-R : Mathieu St-Amour (guitar) | Rich O’Neil (drums) | Renaud Jobin (vocals) | Payam Doryani (bass) | Dimitri Gervais (guitar) – Photo credit : Alexandru Petrosan [Download - High Res Press Photo]

    Releasing their debut their full length album 'Tides of War' yesterday on Tuesday, January 29th, Ottawa, ON's melodic death thrashers Chariots of The Gods are proud to unleash their new music video in support of the annihilator on BlankTV at the following link below.

Music Video - Chariots of The Gods - Tides of War
chariots of the gods -
 Produced by award winning producer/engineer/mixer Glen Robinson who has worked with names such as The Ramones, AC/DC, GWAR, Annihilator and  Voivod, COTG's new album delivers 14 epic, crushing tracks to follow up their well received 2010 debut EP 'Reverence,' which the band aggressively toured in Quebec and Ontario, sharing the stage with names such as Misfits, Voivod, Despised Icon, Kataklysm, Blind Witness, Misery Index, Martyr, Fuck the Facts, Blackguard, Neuraxis, The Agonist, Reanimator and Insurrection.

    The metallers have released two singles off the album 'Unbound' featuring guest vocals by Aleksi Sihvonen of Norther and a FREE DOWNLOAD of the title track, both can be heard and purchased with the album at the following locations on bandcamp and iTunes. 

Track Listing - Tides of War
1. Overture
2. Seventh Weapon
3. Blind Assassin
4. Ambrosian Wings
5. Tides of War [Free Download -]
6. Revillusion (1905)
7. Snow Falls On The White River (1914)
8. Severing The Bloodline (1917)
9. Collapse of An Empire
10. Red Skies
11. Nebula
12. Starborn
13. Unbound (feat. Aleksi Sihvonen)
14. Annihilation of The Gods

   In additional news, COTG will be performing at this year’s Drummondville Metal Fest V on Feb 9th with the province of Quebec's top metal talents Cryptopsy (Montreal), Ghoulunatics (Montreal), Bookakee (Montreal), 101 Proof (Montreal), Trollheims (Trois-Rivieres), Odium (Walkerton, ON) and L’Habit Me Suce Le Moine (Drummondville) along with a show date in Montreal, QC the following week on Feb 16th with Burning The Oppressor and La Corriveau (Quebec City).

For more info on Chariots of The Gods please follow them at these links:

Show Dates
Feb 9, 2013 – Drummondville Metalfest V @ Salle Gaston Mandeville – Drummondville, QC – w/ Cryptopsy, Ghoulunatics, Bookakee, 101 Proof, Trollheims, Odium, L’Habit Me Suce Le Moine - Show Details
Feb 16, 2013 - Montreal, QC - L'Hemisphere Gauche - w/ Burning The Oppressor, La Corriveau - Show Details

Kaotoxin Records Reissues ANTROPOFAGO Debut

After the release of their, free, Between Fear and Madness digital EP in November 2012 and before unleashing their brand new, second, full-length, Kaotoxin Records is proud to give worldwide release to ANTROPOFAGO's 2011 self-released  full-length debut, Beyond Phobia(19/20 - MetalSickness, 15/20 - VS-Webzine).
Playing a dark kind of technical Death Metal, that VS-Webzine likened to "a mix of Gorod and Deeds Of Flesh," ANTROPOFAGO self-released their debut in 2011, before getting signed to Kaotoxin late last year. Beyond Phobia is 12 tracks of intricate, psychotic, sometimes melodic, sometimes blasting, Death Metal with a focus on a sharp guitar work (Antropofago counts in their ranks Hugo Mermet, luthier for Gorod, Insain and more...) and catchy song-writing with a lyrical fetish for everything twistedness, psychosis, phobias and the likes.
Like all Kaotoxin releases, the album is available for free full streaming at

Release dates:
- Label mailorder: Jan.29th
- France: Feb.04th (through Season Of Mist)
- UK & Eire: Mar.05th (through Code7)
- Digital, US & Canada: Apr.09th (through MVD)

The Between Fear and Madness digital single, featuring the previously unreleased "Cannibal Way of Life" and pre-production version of "Paranoid Visions (Part 2)" from the band's forthcoming sophomore release, is now available for free at A bonus version that includes a re-worked version of "Bloodred Honeymoon" - which originally appeared on one of the band's early demos - is available on iTunes, Amazon, eMusic, Spotify, etc. and all major digital platforms. Details on ANTROPOFAGO's next album, scheduled for release later this year, are coming soon. 

Melmoth: vocals
Gordon Huillery: guitars
Hugo Mermet: guitars
Alaric Déléris: bass

This Town Needs Guns -

After listening to the incredible album put forth by the incredible band This Town Needs Guns, I have but one question…

Why does your press kit go on and on about being a pop outfit?  Why does it say you decided not to chase a pop payout?

You aren’t a pop band.  You don’t even have pop vocals.  You sing.  You sing very well.  However, there is nothing about you that screams “pop-band”. 

This, my friends, is thinker’s rock.  You could actually call this the anti-pop.  Pop-rock is often rock at it’s most simplest.  This isn’t simple.

  It’s catchy enough and it isn’t distorted.  It doesn’t have overtones of anger.  However, it’s aggressively performed music with some of the most impressive guitar work I’ve heard on any album outside of shred metal bands like Wretched or amazingly intricate artists like Between the Buried and Me. 

Make no mistake, This Town Needs Guns is nothing like the previously mentioned bands.  They’re definitely a band that is easy to listen to.  They have beautiful melodies and stuttering rhythms that wind together within ever-changing time signatures. 

It’s a beautiful musical tapestry.  The rhythmical drumming by Chris Collis’ is extremely well done.  However, they fall to the wayside when it compares to the incredible guitar work and vocals.   The harmonics and plucking of Tim Collis’ guitar lead the way and the falsetto-crooning of Henry Tremain keeps the listener into the mood of the music.  

I have a very difficult time describing what I hear.  It doesn’t seem out of place with any of the bands that I love.  I could see them on tour with Thrice, Lower than Atlantis, Arrow Haze, We’re Doomed or any other band in that indie-heavy rock/punk vein. 

Although they’d also fit right in with lighter fare, like Mutemath or Death Cab for Cutie.  I don’t know.  All I know is that they’re amazing, and have skyrocketed to the top of my favorite bands.  Check them out. 
Straight A’s from The Professor. 

--The Professor

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Power Thrashers Edge Of Attack Post Behind The Scenes Video For 'In Hell'

Left to right: Dallas Dyck (Rhythm guitar), Roxanne Gordey (Vocals), Jurekk Whipple (Lead guitar, vocals), Denver Whipple (Bass), Trevor Swain (Drums) | Photo credit: Alicia Beisel Photography
   Grande Prairie, AB power-thrash five-piece Edge of Attack whom are gearing up for the release of their self-titled debut album next week on Tuesday, February 19th via Halifax metal label Spread The Metal Records, have posted behind the scenes video from their upcoming music video directed by Karen Michelle Meola in support of their second single 'In Hell'.
To view the video please visit the following link below.
edge of attack -
In addition, the band has posted a video teaser on Blank TV, which can be viewed the following link here. ( feel free to share and embed on social networks)
edge of attack -
Album pre-order available at the following link here. (
Produced by EAO guitarist/vocalist Jurekk Whipple, the debut features ten tracks of haunting vocals, shredding guitars, complex bass lines, furious drumming plus choral and symphonic arrangements along with guest artists by solo artist Ivan Gianinni, Ryan Boivard (Hallows Die) and Pellek (Damnation Angels).
Edge of Attack - Track Listing 
1. In Hell 4:36
2. The Haunting 5:08
3. Demon (Of The Northern Seas) feat. Ivan Giannini 5:04
4. Take Me Alive 4:24
5. In The Night 4:27
6. Edge Of Attack 5:07
7. Rise Above 5:55
8. Forever 3:46
9. The Damned feat. Ryan Bovaird 6:01
10. Set The World Aflame feat. PelleK 8:29

Finnish Death Overlords KRYPTS To Unleash Unending Degradation On February 19th Via Dark Descent Records


Easily one of the most anticipated Finnish death metal releases of this decade, Unending Degradation from Helsinki's KRYPTS has been set for a February 19th release date on Dark Descent Records with vinyl treatment coming from Me Saco Un Ojo. 
Festering in the underground since their inception in 2008, KRYPTS are prepared to set free their debut full-length. While the trademark KRYPTS' sounds from the 2009 demo and 2011 EP are there (lumbering low-end, bone-crunching riffs and toxic vocals), Unending Degradationshowcases a band which has honed their craft and is ready to deliver one of 2013's must-have death metal releases. 

The band is currently streaming the song "Open the Crypt" at and a video preview for "Beneath the Archaic" is up at this location.

Pre-orders are now being taken at

Open the Crypt and enter...

1. Introeon: Perpetual Beyond
2. Blessed Entwinement
3. Open the Crypt
4. Dormancy of the Ancients
5. Inhale...
6. The Black Smoke
7. Day of Reckoning
8. Beneath the Archaic

Otso Ukkonen - Drums 
Ville Snicker - Guitars 
Antti Kotiranta - Bass/Vocals

The Sword – Apocryphon

I’ve always found it amusing how fans expect a band to basically just put out the same album time after time, and just lose their shit when that doesn’t happen.  I don’t really follow that stuff too much, but apparently that happened with “Warp Riders”, the last album put out by The Sword.  I mean, if they had gone all Justin Bieber on us, then yeah, bash away.  But just because they veered away from the sound of the first couple of albums and incorporated some more groove and doom elements is no reason to give up on what was a really good release.  Hell people still like Metallica even after those last two steaming piles of shit they dropped on us.

Sorry fans, but I’m gonna tell you that The Sword have blessed us with “Apocryphon”, it’s pretty fucking awesome, and it grooves like a mother.  I have had this on constant repeat in my car for about 3 weeks now and don’t plan to take it out of rotation anytime soon.  The riffs and grooves that these guys have put down to 1’s and 0’s are really, really good.  So if you’re a fan of this band, it might be time stop trolling the internet, come up out of mom’s basement, and realize that change is good.

One of the things I’ve read about this album is that the song writing has taken a more personal twist, as opposed to previous songs that were all sci-fi and fantasy stuff.  Listening to the tracks and even reading the lyrics, I’m just gonna take someone’s word for that, because I still hear a lot of the previous topics, but then again, maybe JD Cronise has gone all Jedi on us and just incorporated his personal life into the fantasy stuff in such a way that it just subliminally works its way in.  Either way, the lyrical content is entertaining and I think I already said that the music is a monster.

Personal favorites have to be track 3, “Arcane Montane”, which is some pretty heavy music that really swings, and if you know me you know that’s right in my wheel house.  Track 4, “The Hidden Masters”, is also really good.  There are some light, delicate parts right before the heavy comes in and beats you about the head and shoulders in a good way.  “Dying Earth”, the fifth track, also does that light/heavy thing but in a slightly different way.  Those are my favorites but the whole thing is really worth listening to.

I got the deluxe version of this release so there are also some killer live tracks and a fantastic cover of the old ZZ Top number, “Cheap Sunglasses”, which is very well done.  Pretty faithful to the original with just enough little twists to make it their own, which in my opinion is how a cover should be done.  In covering this song you can definitely hear where their bluesier influences come from, which you might expect from a Texas band.

So what should you do?  Check this disc out post haste.  And as always, don’t go in with preconceived ideas of what The Sword should sound like.  As the great George Clinton said, “free your mind and your ass will follow”.


Tuesday, January 29, 2013

En Route To Heavy MTL: Oderus Urungus (Dave Brockie) of GWAR To Guest Judge Round 2

   Following the success of the inaugural edition in 2012, Dungeon Works Productions and Evenko are proud to present En Route to Heavy MTL 2013 and the selected twenty bands that will be battling it out over the next five months to win one of two opening slots at this year's 2013 HVY MTL.

Battle 2 of the BOTB will take place on Thursday, February 7th at Les Katacombes (1635 St-Laurent Blvd) with special guest judges GWAR's vocalist Dave Brockie best known as Oderus Urungus, along with Slaves on Dope vocalist and CHOM 97.7FM DJ Jason Rockman, plus award winning producer/mixer Glen Robinson (GWAR, Voivod, Grim Skunk) (more credits can be found here), along with local music industry for the alternative metal night.

Competing bands: Alternative Metal Night
Ogenix -
Projekt F -
D.O.T. -
Truth or Scare -

Event Details:
Ticket Purchase: & La Boutique Labyrinthe: 486 Ste. Catherine Ouest
Date: Thursday, February 7, 2013
Time: 8:30PM
Cost: $12 Advance / $15 Door
Rounds to come! 
Progressive Death Metal Night:

Brought By Pain -
Pronostic -
Tunguska Mammoth -
Derelict -
Prog/Power/Epic Metal Night:
Transcend -
Eclipse Prophecy -
Kalter (Quebec City) -
Unbeing -
Deathcore Night:
Rosewood -
Self Collapse -
Of Temples -
Death Lullaby -

Horn's Newest Anthology of Quasi-Musical Advice and Counsel

I haven't listened to much new stuff, lately, I'll be honest. What follows below is a Stygian tour through the only new(ish) released to attract my darkest of hearts.

Dark heart? I dunno. It's off-white, anyway. Kind of an "egg cream" white, one might say.

Pig Destroyer, Book Burner: Their ...And Justice For All-- No low end, weirdly boxy production that somehow contributes to the overall pure dexterity and fury of this band. This and Monolith of Inhumanity fucking tower over ever other grind/ death grind release this year. My no. 3 of the year.

Anaal Nathrakh, Vanitas: No appreciable evolution over their previous LP Passion... but this English black/industrial outfit still show you how pure, literal, psychotic rage sounds. Top of the year.

Weapon, Embers and Revelations: The thrash metal band that wants to be as mysterious and eeeeevil as black metal bands.

Dysrhymia, Test of Submission: Instrumental sludge/ prog that will fuck your stoned ass up. Pelican on benzedrine and a pharmaceutical-grade nootropic stack...

Witchcraft, Legend: If Mikael Akerfeldt was born 20 years earlier and formed Opeth as a hard rock act. Great. No. 2 of the year.

The Shrine, Primitive Blast: serf/stoner rock played by overstimulated teenagers who just discovered how much they like weed, and punk rock... MRSA-catchy songs on this bad boy, these Beach Boys of punked-out hardcore and blues rock....

Car Bomb,  w^w^^w^w  -- that cover; sounds like Meshuggah and/or Helmet covering the
Crumbsuckers and/or Scatterbrain and/or Thought Industry.... Dillinger Escape Plannish....


Monday, January 28, 2013

COLDSTEEL Releases Title Track Off Forthcoming EP America Idle

Breaking a 20-year silence, NYC underground thrashers COLDSTEEL have released the title track off of their forthcoming EP, America Idle, as a digital single. The song is now available for purchase through, CD Baby and iTunes. 

COLDSTEEL vocalist Troy Norr had this to say about the track, 
"'America Idle' is a song written by the people for the people and has a close tie in to the anguish experienced by many people in current day society."
America Idle will be released on February 20th through Stormspell Records. The EP will be available as a digital download through iTunes,, CD Baby and other online music retailers. The CD version and 12" Vinyl LP (Limited to 1,000 units) will be available through Stormspell Records,, and CD Baby. A 12" Vinyl Picture Disc (Limited to 200 units) will also be available exclusively Conceptually, America Idle expresses current societal anxiety and proclaims an anthem to rouse the unbreakable spirit of America.    

On the live performance front, COLDSTEEL's first show in 20 years will be on April 9th as direct support for UDO at Revolution & Bar Music Hall in Amityville, NY. Advance tickets can be purchased at 

Direct purchase links for "America Idle" digital single:


"Grab this release whether you are an American fearing for your country's future or whether you are an old fan waiting years for a sign or plainly you wish to listen to something made by veteran hands." - Metal Temple

"Five tracks that are filled to the brim with meaty guitar tones, solos, grooves and just sheer power." - With Guitars

Metal Messiah Radio recently interviewed vocalist Troy Norr (also of KING DIAMOND tribute band THEM) and premiered America Idle in its entirety. Check out the podcast here.

Norr also spoke to AOL Noisecreep's Carlos Ramirez last year about the long awaited return ofCOLDSTEEL. Read the interview at this location. 

For a full band bio, visit