Looking for some female rock'n'roll that kicks ass. Check out The Amorettes from Glasgow. Pure and raw music that rocks.
Looking for some female rock'n'roll that kicks ass. Check out The Amorettes from Glasgow. Pure and raw music that rocks.
One of the coolest bands is close to release their new album. Mammoth Mammoth has recorded "Volume IV - Hammered again" that comes in Mrach. Here is already the first video for "lookin' down the barrel". Pure rock'n'roll of four crazy guys from Down Under - mean and dirty.
Right in time for the tour start Moonspell posted a new video. "Extinct" is the name of the song that is the title track from the newest longplayer of the band from Southern Europe. Cool song.
Status Quo will release a new CD/DVD/Blu-Ray in April. It is called "Aquostic! Live at the Roundhouse" and was taped in ... the Roundhouse in London. The recording was a joined effort of the BBC and earMUSIC and the release will contain 25 songs. The title already says that it was an acoustic set they iconic band played, supported by additional strings and background singers. Here is already a first teaser and the tracklist.
1. And It's Better Now
2. Break The Rules
3. Again And Again
5. Mystery Song
6. Little Lady
7. Rock 'n' Roll
9. What You're Proposing
10. Softer Ride
11. Down Down
12. Pictures Of Matchstick Men
13. Down The Dustpipe
14. All The Reasons
15. Reasons For Living
16. Rollin' Home
17. Don't Drive My Car
20. Marguerita Time
21. Na Na Na
22. Whatever You Want
23. Rockin' All Over The World / Encore /
24. Rock 'til You Drop
25. Burning Bridges (On And Off And On Again)
(7/10) What a twist when it comes to Code. Being known as a black metal band from London, UK the band released with 'mut' an album that wasn't expected - at least not from my side. The black metal roots are more or less gone and the new sound is settled somewhere between post-rock and avantgarde. Funny side note is the fact that 'mut' in German stands for courage. And this is what the band shows by releasing such a record.
It almost feels that the guys have heard too much Tool over the last few months. It's especially the melancholic vocal lines and the phrasing the reminds to Maynard Keenan and band mates.
After having digested this major change in their sound I tried to get more into the new musical approach of Code. A few rounds in the CD player and blending out Code's history makes "mut" to a quite interesting experience. The post rock from the UK-based band can't really reach the mighty Tool, but they do a pretty good job on the new album.
Meloncholy and desperation are the basic mood on the new album. It is a longplayer that comes with distressed soundscapes that build the base for the songs on 'mut'. Everybody who thinks that spring is too colorful the album will be an excellent counterpart. It will bring you a sort of acoustic November into home.
What I like with the album is the intesity of the songs and the mental depth which is reflected in each tune. I personally like the second half of the disc a bit better than the beginning. Some parts in the beginning are in my opinion a bit scatty while the second part feels like a better flow where sound elements fit together very well.
However, nine great songs that, I guess, will lead to some controversial discussion. Code will find some new fans with this release but also disappoint some old fans - a risk you can't avoid by developing. But if you get the 'old' Code out of your system for a while you can enjoy a good and complex album with a lot of intensity. And as said 'mut' in German means 'courage'...
Label: Agonia Records
Genre: Post Rock
(7/10) A new album from Alter Bridge? I view on the cover told me: Wrong. This is the new longplayer of Furyon. But the band from Brighton, UK shows some musical parallels to the mighty band from Mark Tremonti and Myles Kennedy. The guys from the US are still a league of their own, but still, Furyon does a good job on their new longplayer "Lost salvation".
It is the second album of the band. Their debut was released in the UK in 2010 and got the title "Gravitas" before the rest of Europe could start to enjoy it two years later.
Now we are in 2015 and "Lost salvation" offers ten new songs that are quite good. The five-piece band recorded a powerful album that merges traditional heavy metal with alternative metal and some grunge. The result is an energizer that is heavy and melodic in one.
The two downtuned guitars are responible for the heavy riffs that are real headbanger stuff. To 'balance' this the vocal lines are very melodic and the hooks are doing their job too. Not to forget the rhythm section that powers very well and build a dense foundation for the music of Furyon.
Highlights on the album are slow "Scapegoat" that reminded my to the earlier Soundgarden. Also the opener "All that I have" belongs to the credit-side of the album. Melodic and hard.
The mighty "Good sky" is worth to be checked as well. It is again the guitars that make the difference. And if you want it a bit more melancholic I can recommend "What you need"; a song that has some Seattle cross-references too.
The production of "Lost salavtion" is very good. The album got a dynamic sound that has a real punch. Rick Beato did a very good job and the sound benefits the album for sure.
Conclusion: Good powerful metal that invites for headbanging.
Label: Dream Records
Genre: Alternative Metal
(7/10) Hmmm. What should I say about this album? That was and still is my question after several rounds of listening to the twelve songs.
The Storyteller comes from Sweden and is playing power metal with a very melodic component. Sometimes they remind a bit to Helloween and the vocals of L-G Persson sound in certain parts even like Andy Deris. But I had to think about Saxon's Biff Byford as well. The crosslink to Saxon is not by coinsidence since The Storyteller add also some traditional heavy metal to their sound too.
The sixth album of the band from Gävle, Sweden is called "Sacred fire" and as I said in the beginning it is a hard cookie. In almost all meanings of the word.
The twelve tunes on the album are well crafted and sound powerful. We are talking about real headbanging stuff based on heavy riffs, rough but melodic vocals and a rhythm section that comes across very pushing. Sometimes the guys speed up to some doublebass parts and on the other hand the ballad takes care about the emotional moments on "Sacred fire". So, all right you might think.
But there is something that still limits my enthusiasm. It's hard to describe, but I think it is a certain kind of diversity that is missing. The songs, except the ballad, sound very similar and follow a same kind of structure. Except of the ballad it's not easy to differentiate between the different tunes on "Sacred fire". This takes out the tension and gives the album some length after a while. Maybe less would have been more in this context or a bit more courage to try out new elements would have been benefitial.
However, fans of melodic power metal should give this album a try since it has its moments and is a solid piece of metal.
Label: Black Lodge Records
Genre: Power Metal
(8/10) I think that the name and the cover of this record are misleading. When I read Santa Cruz I haven't thought about hardrock with a strong 80's touch. And the cover didn't lead my thought into this direction either. I had more to think about some alternative rock that I supposed to hear.
Wrong, totally wrong. Santa Cruz plays, as said hardrock with a kick-ass attitude. If you should compare it with another band I would say that Skid Row delivered the blueprint for this album.
But let's start from the beginning. Maybe some of you haven't heard about Santa Cruz either. The four guys are coming from Finland and started in 2007. Their debut album was called "Screaming for adrenaline" and was published in 2013.
Two years later the new longplayer is available. Simply called "Santa Cruz" the album comes with ten songs.
Like their heroes from L.A. also the four-piece from Helsinki combine the rough guitar sounds with catchy melodies. The result is hard enough for metal fans but is on the other hand approachable enough for a bigger audience.
Songs like "Velvet rope" are my personal favorites on the album. The riff is heavy, the sound is energetic and the song just rules with its enormous punch."Let them burn" sounds more like the Sunset Stripe than Helsinki and also "Vagabonds" blows your speakers.
Even the ballad "Can you feel the rain" is a song that is more than just a standard attachment. It is done very well and doesn't drown in sweet cliche syrup.
Santa Cruz released with their second album a modern interpretation of 80's hardrock that makes a lot of fun to listen to. And it can become the soundtrack for your next party too. Well done and eight points go to Finland.
(9/10) "War of kings" is the new album from Europe and is already their tenth studio release in their career. As almost no other band the five guys can reinvent Europe again and again, giving their sound always a slightly new expression by constantly sticking to their trademarks.
Regardless if we talk about the hardrock days from the beginning ("Wings of tomorrow"), the commercial rock times with "The final countdown" or the very blues and classic rock influenced last record "Bag of bones" - all those longplayers had their charm and could have been easily identified as being Europe releases.
A crucial part of Europe is the chemistry in the band. Joey Tempest, John Norum, John Leven, Mic Michaeli and Ian Haugland are playing together since almost the beginning of the band. They have grown together during time and the latest releases have presented a band that got mature by still being young at heart.
But it's especially the combination Tempest and Norum that is very important for the band. Singer and guitarist working together is the success factor of many great bands - like Europe.
The new album goes a bit away from the bluesy expression on "Bag of bones" and sounds more rocking again. Joey Tempest said, that "War of kings" is the album that band always wanted to creta wheh they have been kids and listened to bands like Led Zeppelin, Deep Purple and Black Sabbath. I think they succeeded.
Already the title tack, which is also the opener, reflects this very well. The track sound sharder than the ones on "Bad of bones", showing some Zeppelin melody lines a heavy riff from Norum. It's a cool entry into the album.
The Purple references can be heard in tracks like "Second day". It's a pretty releaxed song, build on a great melody and an organ that is so much classic rock. For me a highlight on an album that is full of great songs.
The blues comes back in "Praise you" and John Norum's gentle singing guitar make the track really special. And also "Angels (with borken hearts) is a bluesy tune that Whitesnake couldn't write and perform better. That's the way a soulful ballad needs to sound. It gives you the shivers.
"Days of rock n roll" promise in the title what you get in the song. This is rock'n'roll from the seventies with a galloping rhythm and a cool riff. Joey Tempest's vocals are just outstanding and the song is another pearl on "War of kings".
"War of kings" adds another tinte to Europe's sound palette. It is one of the best albums the band from Sweden ever wrote and released. Yes, "The final countdown" is for the masses, but "War of kings" is the band at their best. It's a longplayer of a band that got mature over all the years and enjoys the ease of making rock music. Thank you for this album.
Guitarist Mark Tremonti posted a first teaser from the upcoming Tremonti album. It's a snippet from a new song and it seems that the album will be called "Cauterize". The first impression of the posted snippet is very positve and it seems that we can expect a great album in May this year.
Here comes a new track from Canadian thrashers Voivod. The songs called "We are connected " and will be released as split 7" together with At The Gates' "Language of the dead". The video you can check already.
(9/10) "Hand.Cannot.Erase" is the title of the new album of multi-instrumentalist Steven Wilson. Known from his solo records, his participation in Porcupine Trees and other prog projects the exceptional artist created another masterpiece of progressive rock.
The inspiration for this conceptual album comes from "Dreams of a life" - a documentation about Joyce Carol Vincent. It became a very emotional album that covers feelings like love, hope, sadness and anger. Steven Wilson managed to put all those human feelings into the different songs on the album and achieves a masterpiece that combines rationality and emtions in an awesome way.
Already the opener is impressive. "First regret" marks the instrumental start before the song seamless goes over to "3 years older". Both compositions together are one unit, built on great soundscapes that show a lot of different colours of progressive rock music. More silent part turn into grooving rock section before great vocal lines bring the song to another level.
With the title track, "Hand cannot erase", the journey through melodies and harmonies continues. The song is in a moderate pace and the catchy melody makes the tune easy approachable. But of course a multi-instrumentalist, like Wilson is, builds in also many details which you will discover step by step - a few more each time you listen to the track.
"Perfect life" is another great moment on the album. Spoken female words combined with a hypnotic electronic sound based on samples and keyboards create a piece of music that is excellent. And it's singer Ninet Tayeb's vocals that puts the crown on this song.
She has also an impressive part in the eight minutes long "Routine" that starts with piano and vocals of Wilson. Everything sounds very melancholic in the beginning before it gets more rocking in the second half. This song is big and a definite highlight on "Hand.Cannot.Erase".
"Home invasion-Regret #9" is a cool groover with heavy guitars - very complex and with some unexpected twists. It's a muliti-layered song that provides many surprises like some funky parts in "Home invasion". I would call it catchy experiemental heavy music.
The two and a half minutes long "Transience" is an emotional acoustic bridge with guitars and vocals only. A nice moment to breathe through again after the demanding previous track.
"Ancestral" is another epical long piece. It takes 13 minutes and is an emotional journey through various soundscapes. The track starts slow and peaceful before it has a first burst after four minutes. It is this interplay between almost fragile silent parts and heavy sound eruptions that gives the song its charm. And as almost nobody else in these days Wilson combines all this into one solid unit that fits together very well.
"Happy returns" rounds of Steven Wilson's fourth solo album. The tune has a very positive vibe and has a swingning touch. It feels like the silence after the storm, called "Ancestral". And with the choir that is build into the tune it shows some cross-references to Pink Floyd.
Stop reading - start listening.
Gerne: Prog Rock
(8/10) New stuff from The Answer. Yeah.
The band from Northern Ireland is still fairly new, eventhough they started already 15 years ago. But it was in 2006, when they released their debut, and especially in 2009 with "Everyday demons" that they got more attention. What gave them even more publicity was the support slot in AC/DC's "Black ice" tour. I have seen them at that time in Oberhausen, Germany and I must say that they did a damn good job. It's not that easy to 'win' an audience that comes basically for bands like AC/DC, but The Answer earned quite some credits that night.
Their sounds fits and fitted very well into the retro trend that is around since a few years. But The Answer isn't one of the bands following this trend - they have been involved in creating this revival.
The new longplayer is called "Raise a little hell" is the fifth one in The Answer's discography and the second one for Napalm Records. Twelve classic rock songs have found their way on the record - with a lot of inspiration from esp. Led Zeppelin ("Aristocrat". This is based on the music they play in general, but also voice and vocal lines of Cormac Neeson emphasize this impression.
That the mentioned tour with AC/DC had an impact on the music of The Answer becomes obvious in tracks like "I am what I am" that is stimulated by the legends from down under. Looking on the result, something that is very positive. The tune's a real cool rocker with a great riff.
Other tracks you should listen to are the pounding opener "Long live the renegades" with a lot of drive, the mentioned "Aristocrat" with a damn cool groove and the half-ballad "Cigarettes & regrets". But also the title track, which is the closer too, is a highlight on the album. It is a slow song that blows out of your speakers. The tune has an excellent groove, a warm guitar sound and an harmonica part that is the cherry on the cake. A mighty title track.
"Raise a little hell" is an entertaining hardrock record that is the perfect soundtrack for having a good time. Or to say it in the Facebook language "I like".
Label: Napalm Records
Genre: Classic Rock