Archive for July, 2015

Lazy Daze ‘Venus Rising’

July 25, 2015

Opening with a nice steady, fun rhythm, shortly joined by some light drums and pleasant soft female vocals.  Quite a visual song, with evocative lyrics and smooth, flawless riffs throughout, ending with light percussion.  Something of a traditional folk sound to this one; it’s bright, summery and uplifting.  One for the more alternative/soft rock mindsets and definitely the stuff of folk/alt rock fests.  Slightly more poppy than rocky in places, but with a freestyle element, alternating between the two.  An easy listen, with a light summer breeze quality.  Good production and sound values.  An outdoorsy track, best listened to sitting on the grass, with a picnic.

7/10 *******

For fans of Pentangle and most folk rock, generally.

 

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Delirious ‘Mosh Circus’ album

July 21, 2015

From Germany, the oldest band of the new wave of thrash, formed in 1990, Delirious offer their current album ‘Mosh Circus’.

Circus of Mosh – Much like the opening to WASP’s ‘Inside The Electric Circus’, but with some evil sounds and laughter added in.  Short and sweet.

Drowning In Your Blood – Nice heavy drum opening, reminiscent of a battering ram, breaking your door down.  Joined in heaviness by some nice thrashy, power vocals, right out of the ‘Heavy Metal Killers’ school of loudness.  With growl and thrashy melody combined, this goes down very nicely.

I Can’t Resist – A thoroughly dark and creative heaviness permeates throughout this one.  Just for comparison’s sake, it reminds me of a combination of D.R.I.’s ‘Beneath the Wheel’ and Municipal Waste’s ‘Art of partying’, with a brand new twist.  Not a bad sound at all. I like the combo of strategically placed softer more melodic sections and heavier thrashy elements.  It’s one of those in which a very palatable blend of old school, new wave and crossover styles is clearly audible.  I particularly like the plentiful speed riffs and the vocal harmonies, which fit this track well.  Sharp, concise, aggressive ending, just as you’d expect.  High calibre song.

Toxic Trace –  Opening with a no holds barred volley of drums, coupled with classically thrashy riffs and deep throaty lyrics, it’s really just a very typical high class thrash song, maintaining the powerful momentum throughout.  Everything you’d want in a thrash track, getting the fast-paced rhythm just right and throwing in plenty of melody in the midsection riffs.  You can almost hear the drums rolling over onto themselves, with sheer loaded energy.  Continuing with more of those throaty lyrics, so well suited to the style of this track, I’ve got to say this title is very fitting too and just seems to add that perfect touch.

Moshcircus – Liking that inventive gradual melodic riff, with the drums just marching in there, with aplomb, then increasing the pace, varying the rhythms here and there and just creating a really sexy sound.  This has got power and speed in spades, along with the thrash. Some nice technical riffs going on in there and it’s a song which is able to successfully move away from itself, but return just as easily, alternating the beats and forms of riffage, in such a listenable way.  This has a lot to offer.

The Neverending Rain – Great wave like sweeping intro.  Soon followed by loads of gorgeous melody.  Speaking of ‘Heavy Metal Killers’, if you want another comparison, this sounds, in parts, like a combo of RAM’s ‘Sudden Impact’, Enforcer’s ‘Mistress of Hell’ and HOD’s ‘Kicked to the Kerb’ and there are sections of Portrait’s ‘A Thousand Nightmares’ audible in there somewhere too, before it then changes tack, reminding you that it’s still a unique sound of its own and brings a sense of wondering where it’s going to go next.  Always good to keep people on their toes.  A bit of an explosive vocal touch to the finish.

A Memory From My Past – Good heavy start, with a very Testament like feel to it.  Very Bay Area indeed.  Just a great metal party type track, this.  Highly fun and listenable.  Carrying a storming rhythm, a consistently quick pace and nice flowing melodic vocals.  I’m liking the way the drums and riffs combine, in gradually increasing heaviness.  Nice well-suited lyrics).  Fading out really well, on a final heartfelt riff.

Your Decision – No it’s not a tribute to the AIC track!  A different opening to usual here, with an intriguing gentle percussive element, building till it’s joined by the characteristic dark and heavy speed riffs and similar sounding vocals.  Fiery and drum fuelled in places, with a combo of light and heavier shady vocals, carrying it off well.

Dead Men Rising – Very deep, dark and growly, befitting the title.  This has an excited sound and feel throughout, with a very clear sense of the dark underworld of metal and would work well as a Halloween theme.  Carrying off some lovely riffs after the midsection – I’d say this has elements of sludge, stoner, doom and gothic horror, as well as thrash; making it playable in most metal arenas.  Closing with a battering of drums.

Bloodsucker – Opening with a very beautiful riff, soon overtaken by charging flame fuelled drum rolls.  The vocals which follow are quite adaptable in nature; displaying an easy swing between spoken form, sung style, deep-throated growls and clear melodic tones.  The variation suits the song well.  Those drums get louder and harder to the end, where they take centre stage in the closing section.

H.M.M.I.G. – Banging drum intro there, closely pursued by some great melodies and power screams.  Liking those lyrics.  A very metal song indeed and just a very nice touch for the closer.  Some beautiful riffs just after the mid-section and its got an anthemic quality to it, which works really well, especially in light of the lyrics. ARGH! Over too soon, as all the best songs always are.  Definitely memorable, though.

Overall, an extraordinarily complex, fun filled package of thrash, composed of many elements, making this one of the finest albums I’ve heard yet.  If this is the future of metal, then it’s in very safe hands.  This has within it, some of the most considered and clever arrangements you’re likely to find in any metal album.  Thought-provoking and clearly written, with truly excellent performances.  If you’re after a new perspective, then this is it.  All thrash metal guitar virtuosos and enthusiasts need to hear this, because this is where it’s at.  It could easily stand up as a lesson in the best thrash metal has to offer.

10/10 **********

For fans of Testament, Exodus, Anthrax, DRI, Municipal Waste, RAM, Enforcer, HOD, Portrait and generally, most NWOT/BHM/AHM, European speed/power metal and crossover styles of thrash metal.

www.facebook.com/deliriousthrash 

 

Velvet Insane ‘Breakout of Eden’ EP

July 18, 2015

Breakout of Eden – Truly fabulous enthralling drum roll opening this, with some deeply rocky and impassioned vocals following closely on its heels and the riffs just move right into step, with such immediacy and genuine power; this here is a great example of Swedish metal at its best.  Melody, gorgeous hooks, tuneful, racy and affecting, with sex appeal of unmistakable prowess; it’s got it all.  This is one of those tracks that no true blooded metal lover could ever fail to love and commit to memory.  Surging with power, it just rocks beyond belief.

Do You Want Blood – Anthemic in its intro style, with a battle theme to the lyrics, perfectly matched by the style and aggression of the instrumentals.  Very upbeat and uplifting in nature, considering the lyrical content.  Some great harmonies and a nice free style to the chorus, evoking so much visual imagery and it’s interesting to note that it carries a very different sound from the first track and thus, shows versatility and a possible variety of influences within its delivery. A very strong song.

Frame (1)  – A new and more reflective, sombre vocal intro – becoming increasingly powerful and revealing a lot of depth.  Nothing short of beautifully soulful and so moving as to be haunting in the most magical sense.  This is where the vocals really come into their own, proving their ability to convey truth, sincerity and deep feeling.  There’s a very special quality here, in these vocals, combining grit, heaviness, passion, gentility and soul, all in one voice.  It’s also a song in which the instrumental accompaniments flow and ebb in perfect timing, sound and performance, to fit the vocals in an almost otherworldly way.  If nothing else, they’ve well and truly mastered the art of creating deep and memorable songs which hit you immediately and undeniably.

Overall, a unique and epically beautiful, artful piece of work, which was an honour to listen to.  Each track offers something new and immensely listenable.  Mood capturing and soul captivating.  Blending numerous techniques and feelings and wrapping them all up in one stunning package.

10/10 **********

http://facebook.com/velvetinsaneofficial 

http://velvetinsane.com 

http://twitter.com/velvetinsane

http://twitter.com/velvetjapan 

http://instagram.com/velvetinsane/ 

http://topmusic.jp/artist.php?products_id=1324

‘Breakout of Eden’ is also available on itunes, CD Baby and spotify.

 

Sovereign Council ‘My End’ and ‘The Human Condition’

July 13, 2015

Introducing two new singles featured on the new album ‘Laniakea’, out on August 1st, 2015.

My End – Nice dark riff opening, with some uniquely placed piano segments.  Gently haunting female vocals, intermittently joined by male vocals, demonstrably strong and deep, yet simultaneously gentle in places.  The whole track holds an air of symphonic metal, in utero, to which the combination of male and female vocals lend themselves well.  An airy, light-hearted feel resonates throughout, with a touch of intrigue.  The instrumentals here are clearly felt, but non-invasively, which seems to provide just the right backdrop for this track in particular and the symphonic metal sound, generally.

The Human Condition – Totally different intro to this one, featuring Timo Somers, from Delain.  A crashing drum roll, joined by more vivid piano sections and some very heavy guitar riffs.  Providing a great contrast to the last track, this one moves in a completely new direction.  It’s quite beautiful, with some very well considered gentler, but no less atmospheric piano parts, followed by increasingly heavier guitars and drums.  As a pure instrumental, ‘The Human Condition’ works well, in a still haunting, but more dramatic sense.  A bit of an abrupt ending, which seems to have been cut off slightly too early, which spoils the end effect somewhat, but still, we get the idea and the feeling of dark mystery remains.

Good work.  8/10, if not for that abruptly early finish, which knocks it down to 7/10, but I’d give it 7.5, if it were possible to cut stars in half).

For fans of Aonia, Apparition, Delain*, Leaves Eyes and symphonic metal, generally.