Archive for July 2017

Deserter – ‘Coils Of The Lesser Serpent’   213 comments

Deserter began in Belgium, in 2010, as a true thrash metal band. Quickly emerging as a genuine talent, they brought their own translation of explosive thrash, such as Sodom, Destruction and their own icons, Kreator. A year on, they launched their debut demo, ‘Beauty In Chaos’, recorded via traditional methods, to produce the edgy, rough, aggressive sound they wanted and thus, demonstrate their potential. Proving surprisingly successful, this then led to over 50 live gigs, throughout Belgium’s metal underground, from 2010-2012.

Following this success, Deserter faced the usual band contentions, politics and line-up changes. Their EP, ‘Chernobyl’s Beauty’, was severely delayed, as a result, eventually being released in 2013, a year later than originally planned. Unfortunately, it turned out to be more of a problematic production for the guys and consequently, they moved forward from it, using their experiences and the associated emotional fallout from them, plus their continued passion for music, to create new material. Broadening their musical horizons, they now began creating music with a deeper impact and meaning than before.

In 2014, ‘Global Ruination’ launched. Though it was fairly well received, assisting their progression, to a full-length album, whilst consolidating their reputation, on the live circuit, they were once more, struggling, with some issues, necessitating change. Consequently, the line-up again began to evolve.

Once ‘COLTS’ was released, things began to improve, with this album showing the band at their best. This was in part, down to their being so particular about its sound and structure. It therefore, conveys the bands’ message much more clearly, assisted by the new life breathed into it, by the current line-up. The band are much happier with the new sound and more confident in its reflections of their standards. Now being signed to Vile Records, USA, with their music widely available and support, from a deservedly well-known, established metal promoter, Deserter are looking forward to their future, with well earned optimism and are now ready to unleash their music and its message on the world).

Darkening Clouds Over Utopia – Suitably eerie, intriguing ambience introing, injecting a strong sense of suspense, before the eagerly awaited thrash metal assault launches into life, with explosive effect. Brief, but to the point).

Urban Gehenna – Opening with a truly classic thrash attack, this is old school, at its best. Catch, heavy melody, inbuilt Slayer-esque sound, lightning fast pace, face meltingly fiery riffs and a wall of furiously delivered, acutely precise drum rolls. Metal mayhem.

Headhunter – It gets even hotter, wilder and faster. Picking up the already frenetic pace, throwing in some blackened death growls, it’s a collective blitz fest of thunderstorm drumming, red hot riffs and palpable creative passion.

Carnal Carnival – Explosive start, firing out the metal, at full impact, it just bangs. Increasing the tension, as it goes, it’s a full-scale firework display. The Kreator influence is in plain sight here, as they give it all they’ve got.

Where Emptiness Ends – Beginning with a lovely emotional flamenco style acoustic section, that is, in fact, how it continues, as a full acoustic instrumental, closing with light rain effect. Beautiful.

Cry Of The Forsaken – Banging into life, with a violent drum and riff intro, there’s no shortage of heaviness here and it’s just glorious. Blackened vocals again, come to life, matching the violent instrumental intensity, note for note. Blitzing through the track, revealing a veritable battering ram of volatile aggression, you’d have your work cut out to match this.

Bombing Flight – If you thought that last track was heavy, this one’s even heavier and harder, with even more riff melody thrown in and you really would think Slayer had entered the room. A forcefield of pure, sustained thrash aggression. It’s in your face and beats the life out of anything and anyone who stands in its way. Doom mongers and naysayers, be damned. They won’t survive, in the face of this forceful blast of thrash metal energy.

Warscar – Arena style drumming, more deliciously Slayer-esque riffs, extremity abounds, the Devil rides and it’s victorious. If ever there was an exercise in metal cred demo, this’d win it, hands down. Faster and faster, the rapid fire pace just sweeps you up and takes you with it. The drumming is so intense, at one point, it actually begins to sound like a helicopter and in fact, as if by magic, a helicopter sound effect appears, in the closing section, with the gorgeously performed acoustic guitar addition and the returning rain, topping it off wonderfully. Beyond powerful.

Overall – Intensely powerful, volcanic eruption, of violent, volatile thrash metal expression. Fantastically vivid aural description of untamed, uncensored, unfettered release of explosive, profound emotion. Deeply affecting.

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

For fans of Slayer, Kreator, Testament, Children Of Bodom, Carcass, Exodus.

Posted July 30, 2017 by jennytate in Uncategorized

Jaw Bones – ‘Wrongs On A Right Turn’   5 comments

Amongst the fastest rising bands in (Thessaloniki), Greece, Jaw Bones introduce their debut album, ‘Wrongs On A Right Turn’, with its associated video, managed by Access In Music, under the Sliptrick Records label. The album follows a string of live shows, supporting bands such as Clutch, Monster Magnet, (both USA), Therapy (Ireland), The Greek Night Stalker, Planet Of Zeus and 1000Mods, etc. Lead single, ‘Ego Tripper’ was also released on video, directed by Dimitris Vavatsis.

Communication – Introing with a wah wah effect and lots of grit, an instant sense of cathartic anger, it’s a good start for a debut, ensuring memorability. Gravel encrusted promise, with plenty of raw emotion.

Disciple – A harder, heavier, more defined edge, bringing the drums forward and experimenting with some Morrison-esque vocals, it’s an intriguing combo of hard rock, psychedelia and blues tinged sounds. Leaving a lasting impression, for the powerful vocal expression, if nothing else, there’s an unusually original, inventive streak running through it, often absent at such early points in a band’s career.

Ego Tripper – Opening with a highly under-used tremolo effect, almost theremin-like, in its intensity. Enthused vocals take over, along with a blues, funk, soul section, again, rare, even in the work of well established bands. There then follows a heavier section, showcasing the full vocal dexterity present in this multi-talented voice. Carrying a proggy streak within it, this is a single demonstrating a well combined mix of genres, under the hard rock umbrella.

Don’t Bring Me Down – Another unusual intro sound, again, deviating from all preceding tracks, in its bravery, before reintroducing that Doors-esque sense, creating instant recognition and performed so impressively confidently. Increasing in heaviosity throughout, listening’s almost a psychedelic experience, in itself.

Fear, featuring Androniki Chaostar – Beautifully played and timed brief acoustic intro, before moving with total fluidity, into a harder section; it’s so refreshingly intriguing to hear. Slightly sinister edge, with an Eastern female vocal imprinting itself on the track, it’s incredibly versatile, in its approach.

Sugar Daddy – A great riff presence here, with stronger drum sections, these vocals take on a more relaxed tone. Some very tasty rhythm sections, with a bluesy attitude again; if there’s one thing Jaw Bones guarantee, it’s to keep you on your toes, never knowing what to expect. Fans of Jon Spencer’s Blues Explosion will get on well with this.

The Ride To Nowhere – Returning to a classier heavy rock vibe, with a well honed power scream, to match it; a stoner essence makes itself known now. Picking up the pace alternately, till injecting a Portishead-esque feel, toning things down, intermittently, before indulging in a full-scale freak out, at the end – there’s something of a Pandora’s Box effect to ‘TRTN’. Reminiscent in places of Orange Goblin’s ‘Scorpionica’.

Should Know Better – Nice solid chunky riff intro, rapidly followed up by equally pleasant smooth vocals, creating a real listenability factor. An enjoyably chilled out track, with a noticeably catchy sound. The bass really comes into its own here, presenting a deliciously dark foundation. Such passion in the closing lyrics and another quirky ending.

Song Of The Nightingale – Gorgeously penetrative bluesy intro, exuding a movingly heartfelt vocal harmony, continuing on, through the track. Haunting finger-picking going on there, with a nice, slow, relaxing beat. A very emotional, even melancholy song, containing so much raw beauty, it just needs to be heard.

Overall – A highly impressive, inexplicably skilled, versatile, emotionally intelligent and resonant album; unforgettable, as a debut, leaving its unique imprint, deeply.

8/10 ********

For fans of psychedelic, stoner, prog, blues, funk and soul, alt, cross-over, combo and sub-genres. Specifically, The Doors, Paul Weller, The Jam, Orange Goblin, Jon Spencer’s Blues Explosion, Portishead, Kyuss, ZZ Top.

Posted July 29, 2017 by jennytate in Uncategorized

Brainthrash – ‘Brain Rangers’   12 comments

Introducing ‘Brain Rangers’, current release from Brainthrash, from Finland, founded in 2005. Influences include: Exodus, Vio-lence, Testament, Demolition Hammer, Sepultura, etc, 80’s thrash. ‘B.R.’ is their 3rd self release so far, following ‘Major Mayhem’, (2006) and ‘Mental Kombat’ (2012). Presently unsigned, Brainthrash are a force of nature to be reckoned with.

Vomit Protector – Exploding into life, with high-level thrash energy, instant affecting impact. We know where this is going immediately – always a very reassuring factor in thrash). Littered with great, energised, joyful power screams and frantic, impassioned instrumentals. It’s got a great, uplifting, cheerful buzz about it and generally, it’s a fantastic intro.

Die Right – Bursting out of its cage, with full tilt, exciting, in your face metal. It knows how to rock. Vivid and colourful thrash lives and breathes here. It’s found a good home, if those vibrantly energised, cohesive arrangements are anything to go by. It’s just a really fun, lively track, with slight echoes of H.O.D.’s ‘Kicked To The Kerb’.

Major Mayhem – Ace, percussive intro, vocals going up a gear, to skilful aggression, without losing any of the fun. Instrumentals growing ever more thunderous and the whole thing just carries a solid, thoughtful determination. Another fab listen, with a fresh, upbeat energy about it.

Kannibal Clock – Once more, the percussion element intro’s, rapidly followed by fulsome, powered up accompaniments. Catchy as hell and more of an anthemic feel to this, in sections. Some thoroughly gorgeous and patently sexy riffage and those vocals hold such a force of life and energy, it’s impossible to avoid. Fading out on a luscious feedback riff, this is power incarnate.

Big Bitch – Intriguingly mechanical intro, matching the intrigue of the title. Getting in there straight away, with some demon fret work and they’ve chosen some lush scales to base it around. That finger work’s one capable motherfucker, as is the accompanying rhythm. Re-injecting that anthemic strand, at just the right point and you’ll join in, before it ends. This is some inspired team worked monster of a track.

Thanatomania – Opening with a classic Slayer-esque riff, to die for. Imagine a re-worked, newer version of ‘Dead Skin Mask’ and you’re there. Intensely skilled is an understatement. This level of accuracy and precision is something few bands can pull off, especially when performed with such genuine exuberance. It just infects you with its joy. A dead cert for the collections of all true thrash metal purists.

All The Chambers – Slightly bizarre turn of events, in that oriental voice-over intro, but never mind, as the anger and energy of the thrash soon takes over. Never failing in its metallic duty, it follows it to the letter, in this shining example of thrash paradise. Blitzing through the track, with impressive speed, the cymbals end it, with as much heightened energy as they can muster. Stunning.

Mental Kombat – Another hit of that percussive passion and a mightily impressive power scream intro and on it continues, with an air of absolute metallic glory. Packed to the rafters, with all the best ingredients – catchy rhythms, happy vibes, melodic energy, thrashy consistency throughout, screaming with enthusiasm, it’s a beast, of epic proportions.

Brain Rangers – Bang! That’s how to open a closer). Already, I hear the reassuring tones of easy thrash reliability. Upbeat choruses, amazingly Slayer-esque riffage, addictive pace, loud, powerful vocals, an anthemic edge, all topped off with frenetically life affirming drumming and a steady, lively bass underpinning it. It’s everything I love about thrash metal.

Overall – Infuckingcredible. If ever you’re in any doubt about what your next metal purchase should be, it’s ‘Brain Rangers’. A truly, astoundingly effective dose of thrash metal power, to overdose on, for the rest of your life. Buy it now.

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

For fans of Slayer, Testament, Exodus, Anthrax and all great representations of solid thrash metal true bloods.


Posted July 27, 2017 by jennytate in Uncategorized

Psython – ‘HATRED’   4 comments

Five piece metal band Psython, from South Yorkshire, formed in 2014. Embodying the speed and precision of thrash, strength and force of metal and marrying it with the rage and venom of crossover, hard-core punk, their mission is a basic one – to practice the process of ‘write, record, practice, play’, producing a new album annually and playing as many live gigs as possible. Their self produced debut album, ‘Outputs’, was launched in 2016 and 30 gigs later, has been met with widespread acclaim. Having so far supported such highly esteemed bands as Cattle Decapitation, Akercocke, Down To Nothing, Onslaught, Ballsdeep, PIST, Witch Tripper, SHVPES etc, Psython have now cemented their reputation, as a serious and dedicated metal band, within the underground scene. This, their second album, is now ready for planned release, on 1st September 2017.

J+Armungandr – Punchy, hard-hitting, raw aggression introing – such fitting, passionately performed lyrics, there’s no denying the sheer, ultimate power infecting this, from the word go. Skilfully placed riff melodies and an angrily catchy edge running through it, this is just laced with originally delivered metal intent. An absolute powerhouse blitzfest of thrash, from start to finish. Ones to watch, for certain.

Battery Life – Racing on into the fray, with full-scale metal assault, it’s a battle trooper of a song, loaded with high velocity riffage, enraged vocals and speed to kill. Relentless attack, from beginning to end. Power charged fury, at lightning pace.

Teeth – Drumming taking centre stage now, another crazed paced blitz of metal ammo, coming at you, with absolute conviction and spitting fury, in an intensely edgy way. Spot the vibrato in there and feel the incensed catch do it’s thing again, before it ends, with a shockingly precise, abrupt finale.

H.A.T.E. – Storming onto the scene, with a loaded, rage filled message – it means business and it doesn’t hesitate to tell you so. One listen to those lyrics and you’ll hope never to make enemies of these guys. Intelligent melodies, wah wah effect and blatant aggression rules the day – standout track, for certain.

Chai latte – Banging intro, rocking into life and metalling up the place, with total thrash. This works and belongs firmly in the mosh pit. Headbangers delight, it’s just fun, frollicking, intense thrash. Incorporating vibrant melodies, thrashy rhythm and very slight edge of a heavily metallicised Jane’s Addiction, it’s long enough to savour and it’s got something for everyone. A stunner of a track.

Ten Pounds – Firing up the pace even more and throwing in a real, heartfelt sense of anger, it’s a metal blitzkrieg. Slight echoes here of Obey’s ‘Gutless’ and the same rage filled pace as G’N’R’ ‘s ‘Right Next Door To Hell’. Pure intense violence, yet it still intersperses melodic riffs and anthemic vocals, from which an evident serenity shines through. There’s definitely something very real and sincere about this and it’s emotion catches you every time.

One Indeed – A drumming frenzy opens it up this time and an audible solid determination emanates from every component. As if you can hear them, mentally pinning someone against a wall and using them as a punch machine: the energy of the moment just pours out, in torrents. This kind of intention is rare and it’s a big deal. Something about it reminds me of The More I See’s ‘Fear Of Death’. An impressive feat, in itself.

Hashtrap – Massively expressive shout introing; joyful chaos ensues, from there on in. Battering you to death, with an epic drumming storm, it gets right up in your face and blasts itself into your memory. A welcome bit of warrior vocals, the power in this is enough that it doesn’t need to be any longer. It’s fearsome message is clear.

Old Man – Opening with a noticeable slight delay, already, it’s slower pace and darker thread fits with the title, but don’t think for a moment that you’ll get away with a lesser impact, cos it soon confirms its position on that, with a palpable stoning vision of heaviness. Soon reinforcing that impression, with a truly steel edged metal war, the vocals alone spell cathartic release. Ending on a hollow tunnel effect, it just screams power.

Overall – An epically produced and performed piece of work, just drenched in pure, original metal intent. Makes for a highly pleasurable and thought-provoking listen and a refreshing change from some of the derivative styles emerging from the scene. Whilst ‘HATRED’ has some nods to classic influences, it doesn’t rely on them; positioning them carefully and correctly, alongside their own highly original material, forming the vast majority of the album. A rare example of a truly invested band and the extraordinary quality of metal they create.

8/10 ********

For fans of high octane thrash metal and NWOBHM, such as The More I See, Obey, viking metal, hard-core punk, such as Jane’s Addiction, moshing metal, heavy, dark, deathy, power metal, such as Obzidian and Spreading The Disease and old school thrash and trad heavy-metal.

Posted July 26, 2017 by jennytate in Uncategorized

RETCHED – ‘The Overlord Messiah’   2,627 comments

RETCHED was born in 1988, from a band originally named AVATAR – though its founder, David DerMinasian felt strongly that the name wasn’t metal enough. The album was initially recorded in their hometown of Fresno, California, at Maximus Media Inc. The band played gigs locally to them, in California and in LA and Hollywood, to a highly supportive fan base. Unfortunately, they disbanded towards the end of that year, following problems with unsupportive management, leading to promotional neglect, placing them in an impossible position. Fast forward almost 30 years later and David DerMinasian has self released the album, through It’s since received 3 record contract offers, out of which, Alone records, in Thessaloniki, Greece, was chosen. They now have a massive online following.

From this story comes RETCHED (pronounced ‘recht’) – a 2-piece thrash metal band, consisting of David DerMinasian (lead rhythm guitar and bass guitar) and David Ezelle (vocals, drums and percussion), with a strong online presence. Their debut album is expected in November 2018.

Black Leather And Me – Snazzy memorable intro, simulating the sound of a stereo needle on vinyl, quickly followed by a classic riff, maintaining impressive momentum, throughout. Soon accompanied by equally old school metal vocals and throwing in some very brief screechy stuff, with some backing harmonies, here and there; the lyrics say it all. It’s just a typical old school thrash track.

Insane – Drumming attack intro, more of a power scream emphasis to the lyrics and tons of riffage. Standard thrash fayre, without much deviation from type or tonal variation, but it’s a fair listen.

Lost In The Night – Here, the drums increase their power and the lyrical volume matches the rise in sound. Generally, a more powerful energy and the screams are well placed, adding greater life and strength – enhancing its enjoyability. Closing on a thunder and rainstorm sound effect, the energy’s lifting here.

Metal Knights – Opening with a military leader commanding a firing squad to take aim and rapidly followed up by more traditional metal stuff, with even more poignant melody. Just too short and ends just as you’re getting into the flow. Stand-out fixture has to be the riffage, though, being so acute, as to be almost physically palpable. Spine chilling, in its own way.

The Pharaoh’s Curse – Introing with a powerful windstorm, emulating that of Dio’s ‘Holy Diver’. Again, it continues in a similar vein to before, with more thrashy sounds and a determined vocal edge. Growing increasingly Egyptian, in sound, in deference to its title, the passion’s audible, as with the enthusiasm.

The Overlord Messiah – Once more, opening with the increasingly familiar storm effect, but this time, varying it with an acoustic section and a noticeably sudden, dramatic surge in power, within the screams and overall vocal refrain. It’s very welcome; adding something highly pleasurable to the song’s atmosphere. Ending with another acoustic guitar section, much like that of Ozzy’s ‘Killer Of Giants’. Nice touch and they’ve definitely nailed the title track’s memorability stakes.

Overall – A general sense of easy listenability and though it may lose some of its potential edginess, in its lack of versatility and variability, it compensates in vocal energy, drive and instrumental capability and flair. This may not be what you’d call a ‘spectacular’ album, but the title track alone is worth buying it for and for all we thrash metal enthusiasts, it’s old school loyalty and classic essence makes it a great, comfortable addition to our collections.

7/10 *******

For fans of Dio, Ozzy, WASP, Iron Maiden, Def Leppard and Warrant. to buy physical copies. for streaming. (RETCHED radio station)

Posted July 25, 2017 by jennytate in Uncategorized

Devilfire – ‘Waiting For A Rock Star’   6 comments

Ahead of their forthcoming album, ‘Dark Manoeuvres’, Devilfire bring you their latest video release, ‘Waiting For A Rock Star’. Launching straight in there, with a really classic rocky intro, cemented by the visuals and rock star images portrayed in the video. Harking back to that nostalgic 90’s vibe of rockers who looked, played, walked and talked the part, with truth and conviction oozing out of every pore, that’s what this track and video are about. The song screams ‘rock’, with all the deliciously tantalising guitar riffs to prove it. The setting’s an intriguing old country castle and its grounds, which though it may be neither here nor there, adds a sense of elusive mystique to the track, opening it up some more. Some may say it’s derivative. I say it rocks. Hard.

8/10 ********

For fans of 90’s rock, with a classic flavour.

Catch them headlining, at Birmingham O2 Academy, on August 26th and Sheffield O2 Academy HRH Sleaze, on September 2nd.

Posted July 16, 2017 by jennytate in Uncategorized

Velvet Insane – ‘Self Titled’   16 comments

Four piece rock from Ostersund, Sweden, Velvet Insane was born from the original band Pure Faith, after the tragic death of their manager. V.I. was an attempt to change direction, incorporating Jesper’s love of big choruses, melodies and riffs; the intention was to create a band larger-than-life. The inspiration for the band name came from working on song production in a factory for a day. Ultimate band chemistry was discovered in the combo of: Jesper Lindgren (guitarist and songwriter), Jesper Sandstrom (bass) and Jonas Eriksson (initially drums, evolving to vocals).

November 8, 2013 saw Jesper Lindgren hosting a ‘Stjarnfall’ gig, in memory of the late manager. It featured Nick Borge, of Backyard Babies, State Of Drama, author Anders Tengner and V.I., themselves. The gig secured V.I. widespread recognition, inspiring them to record new material, with the aim of recapturing the atmosphere of that event. The result was a meeting with Rock News magazine’s Sven Moren, who wrote an article about the band’s journey to success and eventually took over as band manager in February 2014. That year commenced with a North Sweden tour and highly acclaimed gigs in Falun and Stockholm. Production work on their new material continued and their debut EP was recorded in April of that year, in Esta Studios, in Stockholm and released in May, the same year.

Line-up changes took them back to Stockholm, where their official debut EP, ‘Youth On Fire’, was recorded and released internationally, on October 25, 2014. The EP’s release culminated in widespread awareness of the bands’ work and in autumn of 2015, they toured Japan and the UK. August 2016 saw them return to the studio, to record their self titled debut album. They then toured Spain and America. The start of 2017 launched an effective radio campaign, proving their readiness for that rock industry wide ubiquitous concept, world domination.

Break Out Of Eden – Really tasty rocky drum roll intro, rapid follow-up high-level vocals and riffs, slotting right in, with effortless flow. A hard to find combo of easy listening and flawless novel rock, with a classic vibe. Mood lifting stuff, for sure.

High On Love – Riffs introing, with a slight stoner/bluesy sense and a very agreeable sound. A real old school flavour permeates this and it carries that nostalgic feel, injecting immediate appeal and visual imagery, evoking a world of associated emotions. An elusive quality these days and one to be treasured.

Help Me – Plucky riff intro here, with a catchy chorus, again, holding that déjà vu thing, guaranteeing memorability. Really pleasant vocal harmonies, which’ll have you singing along, before long. It’s one of those tracks engendering jamming visions and general likeability.

Coffee, Jazz And Arts – Opening this time, with the most beautiful acoustic section, bringing a whole new mood into things. Incorporating string components and a unique lilt in the lyrics, it actually escapes briefly, into folky territory, reminiscent of Celtic music and film soundtrack. ‘Braveheart’ fans are bound to enjoy this. It’s quite simply lovely.

My Way Of Life Is You – Back to the rock again, yet keeping a slight folky edge to it, it’s got a nice slide to it. Nice catchy pace, easy to follow and audibly derivative, in a very positive way, of a classy mix of influences, such as blues, folk, rock, with a slight and very favourable Gypsy tinge. It’s a warm cup of comfort, served in a cosy, rocky wrap-around.

Nottingman – Yummy heavier blues riff and drum intro here, upping the pace, speeding things up and changing the whole vibe, to a more casual, yet edgier mood. It’s got a great feel to it and it’s just so easy to like. Gorgeous guitar breakdowns in there and all the time, it seems to welcome you in, not just lyrically, but generally and you can’t help wanting to stay. It draws you in and makes you believe it.

Lincoln Rd – Oh now that Dylan-esque blues harmonica intro is just so striking and utterly magnetic. So much lyrical and vocal emotion, you can’t help but be moved by. It’s truly and awesomely beautiful. Somehow, that whole bass emphasis reminds me of The Stones ‘You Can’t Always Get What You Want’. It’s kind of like a rocked up rock ballad and I love it.

Infinity – Classically engineered timing, once again, there’s a completely seamless thread to it and it remarkably manages to blend several eras into one, bringing together 90s brit rock touches, with 50s/60s themed blues, rocky modern sections and a mysterious, magical essence, that brings them all together and wraps it up succinctly.

King Of The Foolish – Heavier terrain already, throwing down some sharper, electric riffs and hard-line drums; again, you could be in a present-day setting or a past one, introing you to the basis of classic rock and from there, it could move you into an obscure, psychedelic/prog flower power, trippy back stage lounge bar or Woodstock type gig and each time, you’d still be in the same song. It’s intensely interchangeable, in such a workable way and filled with flavour; finishing on a nicely timed reverb riff. I’ve now got Judas Priest’s ‘Revolution’ in my head. Mind bug territory, or what?

Six Steps Away – Real loveliness again. Fittingly gentle closer. Such moving lyrics and melody. Acoustic emotional offering, you actually feel the pleas behind the words. Including some tightly fitted riffs and gradually building momentum and volume, till it ends, on an increasingly distant fade-out riff. Sheer beauty.

Overall – Mesmerising, pleasantly haunting and magically escapist return to home.

9/10 *********

For fans of wide expanses of eclectic rock, from every era from 50s to present day. Blues, folk, psych, prog, hard rock or gypsy soul, stoner or soft rock – you’ll find something captivating here.

Posted July 10, 2017 by jennytate in Uncategorized

Vescera – ‘Beyond The Fight’   57 comments

American Italian heavy-metal band Vescera formed in 2016. Their debut album, ‘Beyond The Fight’, was released in 2017, via Pure Steel Records. It’s composed of front man Mike Vescera, former Nitehawks members, guitarist Mike Petrone and bassist Frank Leone and Annihilator drummer Fabio Alessandrini. Vocalist Mike has previously provided vocals for Yngwie Malmsteen, Loudness and his own band, Obsession. All tracks on Vescera’s debut album were written by bassist Frank.

Blackout In Paradise – That’s one heavy duty, high impacting drum intro! You won’t hear that often. Hard-hitting vocals to match and the same can be said of the riffs – mega powered as they are. Everything comes together so naturally, it’s as if this band was meant to be. It’s one solid, highly crazed, energetic burst of excitement. Fun paced, lively feel, everyone giving their all. One thing’s for sure. You’re gonna want to hear more. To call it an impressive start would be a massive understatement.

In The Night – More focused space within the intro drumming this time, with the rest following suit, as the pace calms slightly, but definitely no less exciting. Just thoroughly metal and all that goes with it. Packed with intensely colourful riffs, equally intense melody, life affirming vocals and sheer, unbridled power. It rocks so hard, it’s beyond any words.

Stand And Fight – Racing into life, with sheer volume, power screams from metal Heaven and utterly delightful, entrancing instrumentals. Climbing up those riff scales, with a level of freedom and abandon only the truly metal will comprehend and speeding through the track, to the end, it’s just a full on metal delight.

Dynamite – Another drumming battalion introing, slightly reminiscent of Ozzy’s ‘The Ultimate Sin’ album, in places, but ultimately, moving with total accomplished expertise, into their own individual metal celebration. Turn it up to the max. Hammering it home, all the way, metallic exuberance doesn’t even begin to cover it.

Looking For Trouble – Blitzing the show, with immediate impact, there’s a slight Queen essence in here, but again, it’s just so thoroughly metal. Old school, combined with new spins and a classic line-up make this an exceptional sound. If you ever wondered what truth sounds like, in metal music format, this is it.

Vendetta – Straight in there, once again, with all guns blazing; vibrancy is something Vesecra could teach the world. Keeping the pace consistently, with highbrow momentum, the performance is just flawless. Vivid and alive, great catchy hooks and pace throughout, loaded with melody, steel force and metal thunder – it’s utterly breathtaking.

Troubled Man – With one all-powerful drum hit and startlingly clear vocal intro, it lays down the vibe and ups the impact even more. Challenging themselves to strengthen the power, every time, they’d stand up to the highest judgement. Effortless, full flavour, top-level metal. So much fun to be had within it.

Never Letting Go – Introing here, with an anthemic sound, resonant of Def Leppard’s ‘Pour Some Sugar On Me’, but even more metal, louder, faster and getting increasingly so. Hear a bit of Rainbow’s ‘Since You’ve Been Gone’ in there, too? That brilliant blend of various old school influences, added to which, their own completely unique and heavily laid down twists and vibes are what makes this whole album so damn special and so damn sexy. Ending on a classic harmony combo, it just takes you straight to metal Paradise.

Suite 95 – Ooh, Judas Priest fans’ll get off on this ‘Hell Patrol’ type intro. It’s got all the right stuff. Feel-good sounds, determined enthusiasm, lively, uplifting riffs, fresh, exuberant drumming, classic smooth, slick vocals, all delivered with consummate ease. It just works, on every imaginable level.

Overall – An absolute blast of high octane, super fuelled, adrenaline buzzed metal, to excite, astound and thrill your senses, to overload. Even then, it still won’t be enough. Such a magical combo of life affirming genius as this is rare as gold dust – which just about summarises ‘B.T.F.’

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

For fans of old school greats, such as Judas Priest, Ozzy Osbourne, Rainbow, Def Leppard, Anthrax, WASP, Queen, Saxon.

Posted July 9, 2017 by jennytate in Uncategorized

All Kings Fall – ‘Drink To The Lost’   135 comments

Heavy metal band from Waupaca, Wisconsin, USA, All Kings Fall, present their debut album ‘Drink To The Lost’. Influences: Pantera, Megadeth, Lamb of God, Gwar, Jeff Loomis. Performing with the energy and aggression of thrash, with an old school flavour; they have one simple mission – ‘to keep the metal scene raw, real and heavy’.

New Year’s Eve 2016 commemorated their first year together, which was when they performed ‘Of The Earth’ and ‘Toxic Ruin’. April Fools’ Day 2017 saw the release of ‘Drink To The Lost’. (Engineered by Mark Golde, of Rock Garden Studios, remastered by Roger Walters, of Muddy Banks Studios). The album’s already received airplay on Rock 94.7 and 96.9 Fox Homegrown, amongst others. Having been featured alongside high-profile mid-west bands, such as, Morbid Saint, All Out Mutiny and Sleaze, opened for national bands, The Art Of Dying, Letters From The Fire and Adelitas Way and performed at the 2017 Michael Graves benefit has already secured them plenty of exposure. They’re presently playing live gigs most weekends, while producing their new album, ‘Grip Control’ – most tracks from which are being performed live.

Shadows Beneath My Grave – World class thrash intro – setting the scene for instant carnage and it certainly doesn’t disappoint. As their promo claims, they actually do deliver. All the right sounds you associate with high-level sleazy thrash metal are offered here. Throat wrecking energised vocals, with a catchy buzz to the whole thing, it’s an ideal start to what promises to be a lively album.

Wake Up – I already have! Track one saw to that. ‘Wake Up’ gets straight into the very sounds that ensure you do just that, though and stay awake. A distinct 9o’s vibe to this and it takes you back to all the fun, exciting bands around back then. Deliciously old school and just filled with feel-good, colourful vibes, from start to finish.

Elephant Graveyard – The melodic essence of those yummy riffs opens the show, rapidly followed by some majorly energetic power screams, along with a volley of drums, fit to knock you flat on your face. It’s a track which rains metal down on you, with relentlessly joyful momentum and you’ll just want more.

Fight Or Die – Battering your senses, with a full on, drum assault, some unusual (dodgy sounding) grunts and tastefully sleazy lyrics. This is metal that’s unafraid, unashamed and unwilling to repress its energy for a single moment. A real sense of release and tons of anger. It’s the stuff true metal’s made of. Palpable power screams, loaded with sincerity of a level rarely heard, thrash attack instrumentals and a general sense of enthusiasm to kill.

Throne Of Bone – Dare we ask?! Awesomely metal beat, instantly catchy rhythm, slightly calmer track, but definitely no less fun or impassioned. Very subtle echo of Rammstein’s ‘Mutter’, at the end, which closes it really nicely. Just fun time metal, as usual.

Bury The Hatchet – Slicing into life, with full impact heavy thrash metal, in the most exhilarating way. You’ll remember that intro riff, for certain, for its slicing motion. Lots of Pantera influence in here and ‘Walk’ fans especially’ll enjoy this. Finishing off with a battery of drum rolls; it rocks ‘hard, heavy and animal’, (to quote the great Krusher Joule).

Scorched Earth – More of that gorgeous slide riffage, with a bit of deep throated growl and a ton of thrashy vocals – complemented by some very fittingly timed drumming; these guys know how to do thrash right. Enjoy the melody in that riffage, around 3/4 in and just rock out to the rest. Aptly titled, it’s a scorcher of a track.

Grasping Water – Opening with a cavalcade of drums and a total thrash vibe, it rocks, in the most metal way. It’s almost like a summons to rock out. Definitely more of a brutal edge to it, this is one for enraged frames of mind and lessons in how to blow the roof off rock venues).

Glass Jaw – Whoar! That’s the sound I just made at the outset and so will you. Power screams of maximum power and a whole heap of energy. Short, but immense, with a glaringly strong message. Lyrically astute; this’ll stick in your mind.

Drink To The Lost – A final battlecry drumming intro, throwing in some great backing harmonies and exuding aggression – they really go for it this time, upping the power even more, if that was even possible. You’re left in no doubt about AKF’s will to rock.

Overall – Fucking Hell! Like the spirit of thrash metal itself, emanating a fuck ton of energy and every last bit of passion and zest left within it. It’ll wake you up, shake you up and rattle your entrails, like a bag of broken bones. Get some now.

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

For fans of Skid Row, Pantera, Anthrax, Megadeth, Metallica, Amon Amarth, Trivium, Carcass and Taint.

Facebook: @allkingsfall

Instagram: @AKFbandofficial

Twitter: @AKFbandofficial

Booking Contact – Mike Gill

Posted July 7, 2017 by jennytate in Uncategorized

14 Pieces – ‘This Narrative Forlorn’   3 comments

Anticoagulant – Opening with an encroaching warning sound, ‘Jaws’ style, before launching into immense heaviness. Melo-death vocals characterise the track, supported by similarly performed instrumentals and it does have catch. Equal parts melody and death, so something here for both melodic and growly extreme fans.

Lost In Darkness – Positive drum attack intro and getting heavier all the time. Clearer bass involvement here and it really comes into its own, providing a secure concrete backdrop. More riffage and harmonies, constructively employed backing vocals and really, just more of everything. Blending the melody with the death aspects well, that strategic blend makes it an easier listen then many melo-death tracks. There’s a spark of light to this, which is at once, intriguing and free.

Meat Puppett – Introing with some pleasant and very agreeable riffage, before bringing in another combo of heavy and light. Enough growl and death vibes to fit into metal-core, as well as melo-death territory, yet it holds an almost proggy experimental thread, opening it up to a more freestyle angle. There’s an audible freshness, yet it doesn’t stray too far from easily definable genres. Comfortable enough.

Consuming Obsession – Wall of sound, hitting you, in a very metallic way. Extreme vocals make an appearance, soon blending, once more, with softer, background melodic ones. Definitely more growl to this one, though. Slight echo, if you listen carefully, of G’N’R’s ‘Double Talkin’ Jive’, riff wise and just a harder overall sound. Edging into the kind of productive anger that works, when taken into the studio. The rawness is escaping.

Asphyxia – Upping the pace, speed and heaviness; this is a volume increase on that raw aggression I referred to above. Varying the vocals, to include deeper melodic sections, these work well with the growlier bits. Now the energy’s releasing itself, adding more plausibility and though it may seem a curious place to throw it in, that laughter at the end does make me smile.

Transmutation – Good confident, bold intro, really going for it this time. Making the most of the closing track, they really do throw the passion into this one. It’s always a great sound to hear. Just more of everything makes this a really strong, powerful track. Pity it ends there, but it’s a great closer.

Overall – Clear effort wins the day here. A good example of what can be achieved, with solid equal band efforts, with passion and energy thrown in. Enjoyment of process shines through and generally, it’s just a decent piece of metal, increasing in plausibility, with every track.

7/10 *******

For fans of melo-death, extreme, black and thrash metal.

EP available on: Google play, Amazon, Spotify, ITunes and all major online retailers.

Posted July 6, 2017 by jennytate in Uncategorized