Markus' Heavy Music Blog

My world of music - est. 2013

CD review EMERGENCY GATE "Infected"

Veröffentlicht am 30. September 2014 von Markus W. in Emergency Gate, Modern Metal, Metalcore, Death Metal, CD Review, News

(5/10) What on earth is this? Emergency Gate from Bavaria, Germany released a new record called "Infected" and I wonder what I should say about it.

The band started in 1996 and has released already several records. "Infected" is already number of Valsi Doose, Udo Simon and friends and I doubt if this one leads to the big breakthrough. In total the five piece recorded 12 songs that are mainly a mix of melodic death metal and metalcore.

Let's have a look on the positive parts first. Emergency Gate transfers a lot of power with the tracks, but also the sound. The production supports the music in an excellent way. It feels that the guys really like what they do. They also have a pretty good sense for melodies which comes back in a few number of tracks.

The downers on the album are the songs itself. They don't sound new and fresh. Of course they haven't been released earlier, but Emergency Gate also doesn't really manage to give the tunes an own twist. It sounds like 'heard many times before'. There are a lot of bands out there that try to harvest from the same fields and the guys from Bavaria are just one of them.

Than there is the metalcore-rap hybrid "We wanna party". Maybe I missed the sense of humor, but this song is a total black-out. The middle part of the track is the worst I have heard since many month. If you want to listen to a good performance of such a compination listen to Obituary's "Bullituary"

And who had the idea to start a song like "The beginning" with this 80's dancefloor keyboards. And not that those are only present in this tune. They are coming back in several songs on the album. For me a bit too much. This strange crossover mix doesn't work for me. Sorry guys. Maybe next time.

 

(5/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Sons of the second
  2. Going under
  3. Revelation
  4. Your last smile
  5. Crushing down
  6. We wanna party
  7. Infected nightmare
  8. Drowning in hate
  9. The beginning
  10. Pathetic me
  11. Loving hate
  12. Peace of mind

 

Label: Fastball

Genre" Metalcore

 

CD review EMERGENCY GATE "Infected"
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CD review LYRIEL "Skin and bones"

Veröffentlicht am 30. September 2014 von Markus W. in Lyriel, Rock, Symphonic Metal, Heavy Metal, CD Review, News

(6/10) "Skin and bones" ia already album number five of the band from Gummersbach, Germany. The city is more known for successful handball in the eighties than for metal. 

It was in 2003 when Lyriel was founded. They play symphonic metal with folk elements. They describe their music as "Dark romantic celtic rock". The answer on what this means can be found on their newest release "Skin and bones". 

The opener "Numbers" is a characteristic number on the album. The main components are the big catchy melodies combined with the admittedly great vocals from Jessica Thierjung. Those are a positive factor of the band. The string section adds the 'celtic component' to Lyriel's sound. Without this the band would be not more than another female fronted symphonic metal band. 

Also worth to mention is the duet on the album. Thierjung sings together with ex-Scar Symmetry member Christian Älvestam and the combination works pretty well - as long as Älvestam doesn't growl. In my point of view it would have been better if the songs would consist only out of clean vocals. The growls are a strange element in the track that doesn't fit into the context.

"Astray" is the gloomy ballad on the album; performed just by chello and vocals. This songs is actually a nice intermezzo and fits very well half-way on the album.

The really good song on the album is "Running in our blood". This track is so powerful, has an impressive beginning and a big hookline. It could have been even better if the energetic start would have continued throughout the entire tune. It feels a bit like the band surprised themselves by the aural brutality and back-pedaled.

Basically there is nothing wrong with the album. The songs are OK, the groove is there, the performance is OK. But I had the constant feeling that I have heard it already before. 

"Skins and bones" isn't a bad album, but if I want to listen to this kind of music I prefer the originals - Within Temptation and Nightwish.

 

(6/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Numbers
  2. Falling skies
  3. Skin and bones
  4. Black and white
  5. Days had just begun
  6. Your eyes
  7. Dust to dust
  8. Der Weg
  9. Astray
  10. Worth the fight
  11. Running in our blood
  12. Dream without a dream
  13. Black and white

 

Label: AFM Records

Genre: Symphonic Metal

CD review LYRIEL "Skin and bones"
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'Circle Of Movements' - NILE and DEAD CAN DANCE as dance performance

Veröffentlicht am 29. September 2014 von Markus W. in Nile, Dead Can Dance, Gothic, Dark Metal, Death Metal, News

You might wonder why a dance performance is mentioned on my blog. I can understand the confussion. But things get clearer as soos as you know that the music is coming partly from bands like Nile and Dead Can Dance. This might create some curiousity. The dance perfomrance from the ensemble "la folie" from the Ballettstudio Lueneburg, Germany will take place in the Markthalle in Hamburg on October 24. Maybe a cool moment to experience rock/metal slightly different.

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CD review ELECTRIC WIZARD "Time to die"

Veröffentlicht am 29. September 2014 von Markus W. in Electric Wizard, Doom Metal, Classic Rock, Heavy Metal, CD Review, News, Triptykon

(8/10) Elecric Wizard released a new album called "Time to die" a few days ago. It is the first release after the 2010 album "Black Masses".

The doom metal band has worked on another mean piece of doom metal combined with some occult metal influences. Listening to the nine new tracks feels like a journey into the abyss.

Starting with dabbling water and some spoken words the ten minutes long opener kickstarts this trip. Down-tuned guitars and a threatening atmosphere brings cold sweat on your forehead. Those riffs are going right into your stomach. Also the title track "Time to die" follows the same principle. Slow and intense the doom metal rolls over you and doesn't take any prisoners. "Destroy those who love god" changes the pattern a bit. Distorted spoken words are the base for this song combined with a heavy guitar riff that in an almost endless repetition hammers the message into your head.

This album achieves what the band wanted to achieves. It is very black, it's dizzying, it is depressive and oppressive. All well framed in nine chapters. One of those is "We love the dead" which gets the atmosphere across pretty well. The slow guitars celebrate a Black Sabbath like riff that is performed to almost hypnotise the listener.

"Time to die" isn't an easy album. It's no musical quickie; it needs dedication and time to discover the diabolic abyss. After the last Triptykon album one of the most intense records this year. The right soundtrack for November.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Incense for the damned
  2. Time to die
  3. I am nothing
  4. Destroy those who love god
  5. Funeral of your mind
  6. We love the dead
  7. SadioWitch
  8. Lucifer's slaves
  9. Saturn dethroned

 

Label: Spinefarm Records

Genre:; Doom Metal

CD review ELECTRIC WIZARD "Time to die"
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CD review ENCHANT "The great divide"

Veröffentlicht am 29. September 2014 von Markus W. in Enchant, Rock, Heavy Metal, Prog Rock, Prog Metal, CD Review, News

(8/10) Enchant is back - after a decay without release. The prog metal band from the US managed to release a new album called "The last divide". It took the band ten years to release this album and it follows the 2003 album "Tug of war". 

There are several reasons why it took the band that long, but the most important thing is that they are back. The material is basically new written stuff. An exeption is the riff from the opener "Circles" which Douglas A. Ott wrote already when he was seventeen years old. From this moment on he tried to get the riff recorded and it took till today before he succeeded. But now it's out and it kick-off a cool prog rock album.

The sound of Enchant can be still described as prog-rock; somewhere between Marillion and Saga. Next to the guitar sound of Ott it is the basslines from Ed Platt (listen to e.g. "The great divide") and the characteristic vocals from Ted Leonard. His clear and sometimes melancholic vocals transport the lyrics of the songs in an excellent way. Listening to him feels like listening to a singing narrator. 

On of the heaviest songs on "The great divide" is "All mixed up". The tune starts with a heavy riff that continues as a main motive throughout the songs, eventhough there are some breaks along the way. Not a surprise that the track is with four minutes also the shortest one on the CD. 

The more heavy eruption is followed by "Transparent man" - a tune that has with the very catchy melody some hit-potential. The song sticks immediately and is easy digestable.

Another great prog rocker is "Deserve to feel". It's a mix from rocking parts like in the beginning, when a strong groove with a loud guitar dominates the scene. Than Leonard's soulful vocals starts, which gives the song another twist. But the powerful prog elements come back by keyboard sequences, reminding to Saga, and rocking guitar solos.

After ten years Enchant can still release good prog rock albums that are better than stuff from a lot of other bands. Also compared to the latest disappointments from Asia and Yes finally a treat for the prog ears again.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Circles
  2. Within an inch
  3. The great divide
  4. All mixed up
  5. Transparent man
  6. Ife in a shadow
  7. Deserve to feel
  8. Here and now

 

Genre: Prog Metal

Label: InsideOut

CD review ENCHANT "The great divide"
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EXODUS publishs "Salt the wound" video feat. Kirk Hammett

Veröffentlicht am 28. September 2014 von Markus W. in Exodus, Thrash Metal, Metallica, Slayer, Heavy Metal, News, Video

Here comes the new lyric video from thrash legend Exodus. The song is entitled "Salt the wounds", feat. Kirk Hammett. The six stringer from Metallica hooked-up with his old fellows from Exodus for a guest appearance.

Secondly the song is great since former sinher and Hatriot founder Zetro Souza is back on board. The album seems to become a great one and I hope that Gary Holt doesn't focus on Slayer too much. Exodus is the future.

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"Lady of winter" - the new song from ALLEN/LANDE

Veröffentlicht am 28. September 2014 von Markus W. in AllenLande, Hardrock, Heavy Metal, Video, News

Are you looking for some classical metal moments? Her comes the first video from the new Allen/Lande album. The title which is taken from the album is called "Lady of winter". The name of the album is "The great divine" and will be released via Frontiers Records later this year. With songs like this it's not that hard to say goodbye to summer. Winter seems to be OK as well ;)

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New song from MACHINE HEAD

Veröffentlicht am 28. September 2014 von Markus W. in Machine Head, Thrash Metal, Speed Metal, Heavy Metal, News, Video

Eventhough the tour has been postponed and the new album has taken a bit longer than expected - now it's time for a new song from Machine Head. The thrasher released the song "Now we die" from their coming album album "Bloodstone and diamonds". It's a tune that reflects all Machine Head trademarks; from heavy riffs via great solos till a good sense of melody (even with a string part). Check it out.

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CD review NIGHTBRINGER "Ego dominus tuus"

Veröffentlicht am 28. September 2014 von Markus W. in Nightbringer, Black Metal, Death Metal, Heavy Metal, Dimmu Borgir, Emperor, CD Review, News

(8/10) North America isn't the area for black metal bands. Those are more coming from Europe. But there are moments when a pitch black surprise comes across the ocean.

This time it is named Nightbringer. Already the name of the quintet from Green Mountain Falls, Colorado is a clear statement. We are not talking about happy and catchy melodies here. The ten black metal songs are dark and intensive. This album isn't a laid-back piece of music. It's a demanding metal record which screams for your attention - at least when you're interested in black metal.

The first thing I want to state is the doomy and powerful sound of "Ego dominus tuus". It gives the tracks the right gloomy atmosphere that is needed. 

The music itself is influenced by bands like Dimmu Bordir (in the earlier days) and Emperor. But Nightbringer has enough own components in their music to not copy the before mentioned ones. Of course they don't reinvent the wheel with their record, but the 'give the wheel another twist'.

The highlight of the album is reserved to the end. It is the epical long "The otherness of being" that sticks out. It's not easy to keep the tention high in a twelve minutes black metal song. But Naas Alcameth and his gang manages this pretty well. The brawly vocal by Ar-Ra'd al-Iblis, the riffy guitars and the ochestrated background create an oppressive sphere and sound like the ouverture to the gates of hell.

Only small point of critic is the length of the album that is with 72 minutes maybe a bit too long for a black metal record. But anyhow, you can't get enough from good stuff.

All in all "Ego dominus tuus" is one of the best black metal albums from outside Scandinvia. A good fourth strike of the band.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Prayer of naphal
  2. Et nox illumnation mea in deliciis meis
  3. Lantern of eden's night
  4. Things which are naughty
  5. I am the gateway
  6. Call of the exile
  7. Where fire never dreamt of man
  8. The witchfires of Tubal-Qayin
  9. Salvation is the son of Leviathan (Alabas in memoriam)
  10. The otherness od being

 

Label: Season Of Mist

Genre: Black Metal

CD review NIGHTBRINGER "Ego dominus tuus"
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CD review TNT "30th anniversary 1982-2012 - Live in concert"

Veröffentlicht am 28. September 2014 von Markus W. in TNT, Hardrock, Rock, Sleaze Rock, CD Review, News

(7/10) Norwegian hardrockers TNT are looking back on a long history. It was already in 1982 when the band released their self-titled debut. From that moment one the band went on a career with some ups and downs - but they never gave up. They survived the grunge period in the 90's as well as the new metal period in the beginning of the new century.

In 2012 TNT celebrated their 30st anniversary. The guys from Trondheim, Norway played a unique show in their hometown together with the Trondheim Symphony Orchestra. 

Beside the orchestral support it was the performance of founding members Ronni Le Tekro and Diesel Dahl that made the night very special. Additionally to the two founding musicians also Victor Borge and Tony Mills had their moments on the album. To complete the list Dee Snider from Twisted Sisters and Hank von Helvete (Turbonegro) had guest appearances too.

All this togther made this night in June 2012 so special. The setlist instead isn't a big surprise. TNT performed tunes that cover their entire career, incl. my peronal fave "10.000 lovers (in one)" and "Everyone's a star" from the 1987 album "Tell no tales". That's what we expected and wanted. Good choice.

A bit of a downer is the sound. It is OK but it's also a bit blurry. It becomes better along the way, but esp. in the beginning it could be more diversified. 

This is my reflection on the CD. The show will be also released as DVD/BluRay. Since I haven't seen the material I can't say anything to the visual part of the show. However, the DVD version includes also an additional documentary as an add-on.

It's good to see that a band like TNT is still around after in the meantime 32 years. An album for fans and newcomers.

 

(7/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Fanfare for the common man
  2. Invisible noise
  3. Substitute
  4. Refugee
  5. As far as the eye can see
  6. Downhill racer
  7. Intuition
  8. Nothern lights
  9. Tekrø solo
  10. Magica lanterna
  11. Sabre dance
  12. Harley Davidson
  13. USA
  14. Eddie
  15. June
  16. My religion
  17. Everyone's a star
  18. 10.000 lovers (in one)
  19. Seven seas

 

Label: Indie Recordings

Genre: Hardrock

CD review TNT "30th anniversary 1982-2012 - Live in concert"
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CD review ALUNAH "Awakening the forest"

Veröffentlicht am 28. September 2014 von Markus W. in Alunah, Doom Metal, Classic Rock, CD Review, News

(5/10) Alunah is a doom metal band from Birmingham, England. Started in 2006 the band released their newest album "Awakening the forest" in October.

I listened to the album a couple of times, but I have to say that it never created enthusiasm. The band plays doom metal inspired by bands like Black Sabbath and Nature. The sound of Alunah has psychedelic touch too.

The six songs on the album are pretty long, which means that they are between 6 and 8 minutes. The problem is that the songs drown in endless riffs which sound quite similar. What I miss is the creative diversity in their tunes. For me all the tracks sound very similar and I was tempted to use the skip button after a while. I haven't done that since I was hoping for the 'awakening' moments. But they didn't come. So I gave it a second round. Maybe it takes a while. Not really. The only song that sticks out a bit is the "The summerland" as being the last one on the album. It has sphereful beginning and sounds from the structure and the arrangements a bit different than the other ones. It has more of a classic rock influence that fits very well.

The good things with the album is the professional production that gives this release a good sound. Secondly the musicians seem to know what they do. The vocals from Soph Day for example are really good and fit perfectly to the sound of Alunah. If there would be just a bit more changes in the songs.

For the rest I have to say that it's not my cup of tea. I prefer Candlemass and Avatarium. Sorry. Maybe next time.

 

(5/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Bricket wooden coven
  2. Heavy bough
  3. Awakening the forest
  4. The mask of Herne
  5. Scourge and the kiss
  6. The summerland

 

Label: Napalm Records

Genre: Doom Metal

CD review ALUNAH "Awakening the forest"
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CD review JADED HEART "Fight the system"

Veröffentlicht am 27. September 2014 von Markus W. in Jaded Heart, Hardrock, Rock, Heavy Metal, CD Review, News

(8/10) Ups. What happened to the German/Swedish cooperation called Jaded Heart. It feels like the band went through a rejuvenation. What the band delivers on their 12th strike is an energetic achievement that I haven't expected from the guys. The album is a move from melody to riff. Of course we are still talking about melodic metal, but the guitars got much more to the front.

The opener "Schizophrenic" is already a heavy beast - with prog element. I was wondering if Geoff Tate had a guest apperance in the song. The track shows parallels to Queensryche in the "Rage for order" phase. I wonder if Jaded Hearts support show for Queensryche almost a year ago made such an impact. Probabaly not, but however, the track is great.

The second song has some guest vocals. Rick Altzi, better known from At Vance and Masterplan, contributed to the powerful rock song. Surprising that the track comes already at the second position.

To complete the variety of songs from Jaded Heart the slower "I lost my faith" comes next. It's a pretty dark song for Jaded Heart and not my real fave. But it shows what kind of range the band can cover.

"Never free" captivates by its hooklines while "Till death do us part" is another fast smasher that includes a big melody. "Haunted" represents a step back into history to a time when Victory had their best period.

The bouncer "In the shadows" has some Dokken moments (from a time when Dokken was really good). The tune is very riff oriented and attracts by the pumping rhythm line. A good choice to finalize an energetic rock record.

"Fight the system" became a mature hardrock album with an enormous punch. If Jaded Heart will continue with albums like this we will have a lot more years of pleasure with their songs.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Schizophrenic
  2. Control (feat. Rick Altzi)
  3. Not in a million years
  4. I lost my faith
  5. Nightmare's over
  6. Never free
  7. Till death do us part
  8. Terror in me
  9. Haunted
  10. Crying
  11. In the shadows

 

Label: Fastball Music

Genre: Hardrock

CD review JADED HEART "Fight the system"
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CD review 220 VOLT "Walking in starlight"

Veröffentlicht am 27. September 2014 von Markus W. in 220 Volt, Hardrock, Rock, Sleaze Rock, Classic Rock, CD Review, News

(8/10) Good stuff from Sweden. This isn't something unexpected, but the surprise this time is the fact that 220 Volt came out with a new record. Honestly, I haven't expected an album from the band anymore. The more I was happy when I heard that they are working on a new disc.

The band from Sweden had its peak in the 80's when they released pretty good melodic hardrock records like e.g. "Eye to eye". Than it became quite around the band. It was the grunge period that has 'eaten up' some of those bands. It took till 1997 to get another sign of life from the name with the electrifing name. "Lethal illusion" was the name of the album, that probably wasn't even recognised by many of you. Honestly - I missed it too. But now it seems, that another seventeen years later the band is back and wants to set a clear statement.

"Walking in starlight' is the name of the new album and it's amazingly good. It feels like a continuation of where the band stopped in the end of the eighties.

The opener and title track is a great start into the album. Keyboard vapors enter the stage accompanied by the guitar. By the first riff the song gains speed. It stays in the midtempo and convinces with a good melody line. The second track "System overload" is worth a click of the tongue too. It's one of the faster tracks with a great guitar solo. "Blind" and esp. "The waiting" have a bluesy character while songs like "Stranded" are crunchy rockers with a lot of groove.

The end of the album is very relaxed with the emotional "Guiding light". It's the most silent song on the album and a mix between Magnum and Whitesnake. Remarkable also the string contribution during the song, which adds another dimension to the tune. It fits pretty well and is performed very well. It's a touching songs that rounds of a hard rocking album. Why not?

I think that "Walking in starlight" is one of the best melodic hardrock releases this year. The album has the right punch combined with the big melodies. Never too hard and never too cheesy. Just right balanced for this kind of music. A must for all fans of melodic Swedish hardrock. Welcome back guys.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Walking in starlight
  2. System overload
  3. Broken promises
  4. Alive
  5. Blind
  6. Starnded
  7. Get me out
  8. The waiting
  9. Through the wastelands
  10. Burning heart
  11. Take a good look
  12. One good reason
  13. Guiding light

 

Label: AOR Heaven

Genre: Melodic Hardrock

 

CD review 220 VOLT "Walking in starlight"
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New STORMWITCH album

Veröffentlicht am 26. September 2014 von Markus W. in Stormwitch, Heavy Metal, Rock, News

The masters of black romance from Germany - Stormwitch - signed a contract with Massacre Records. There is a new album in the pipeline called "Season of the witch". The record will be released in January 2015.

New STORMWITCH album
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