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CD review ANNIHILATOR "For the Demented"

Veröffentlicht am 2. November 2017 von Markus W. in Annihilator, Jeff Waters, Thrash Metal, Speed Metal, Power Metal, Heavy Metal, News, CD Review, Neverland Music

CD review ANNIHILATOR "For the Demented"

(9/10) Jeff Waters and Annihilator are a constant factor in metal since many years. I still can remember the moment when the band's debut blew me away in 1989. The power and the punch that came with "Alice in Hell" was enormous and it's not a big surprise that some songs are still part of today setlist. 

Annihilator's current success is very much based on the willpower of the bandleader. Jeff Waters is Annihilator and it’s his way of interpreting metal music that can't be put into a standard box that easily. The band is often seen as a thrash- or speed metal group, but this one-dimensional view is too limited for describing the band's sound in the right way. Waters and his gang have, without any doubt, a lot of furious thrash references embedded in their sound. However, the Canadian powerhouse has a lot of traditional metal included in their songs and records as well, something that helps to diversify by adding uniqueness to their music. Based on that, as well as due to Waters passionate guitar sound, you can recognize Annihilator immediately.

In their 29th year of existing the quartet comes with a new longplayer - "For the Demented". The record features ten new metal anthems that cover again the full width of what we're used to from the Canadian guitar wizard. As with the predecessors also the new longplayer combines in good fashion aggressive riffs, a powerful beat and some melodies that make each of the songs to a delight. 

Using all thee ingredients allows the band to vary their sound, also reflecting the lyrics. "For the Demented" isn't a concept album even though it still connects to an overarching theme. The lyrics are very much about the human mind and everything that's connected to it - from brilliance to insanity. Jeff Waters managed to get this entire feel into each of the tunes on the album, also pretty much led by his excellent guitar play.  

Things start with a Maiden-like riff before „Twisted Lobotomy“ turns into a high-speed Annihilator song that doesn’t take any prisoners. This beginning is a metal blast that’ followed by the hammering „One to Kill“, a song spiced-up with furious leads and a merciless beat.

Next to these raging anthems there are the calmer notes as well, showing the earlier mentioned width of sounds. „Pieces of You“ is an awesome power ballad that perfectly fits into the context of „For the Demented“. 

A song that could have been on „Alice in Hell“ too is entitled „Phantom Asylum“. Breaks and twists are very present with a constant interaction of a fast and moderate tempo, also including an awesome middle section. Jeff Waters’ creativity doesn’t seem to have any limitations, leading to these excellently executed metal anthems that found a spot on „For the Demented“’s tracklist. 

What else to expect from the new longplayer? „The Way“ is a tune you should have heard. It’s a different ballgame compared to the rest. It’s a spot-on song with a dirty rock’n’roll vibe, followed by „Dark“ which is a gloomy and atmospheric kind of interlude before the savage closer „Not All There“ ends a great new Annihilator longplayer.

"For the Demented" is Annihilator's 16th studio record and it comes with a quality that makes it comparable with the latest releases as well as with the debut. The new longplayer presents the band as a strong and powerful band that found its sound and evolves it on a constant base. "For the Demented" is excellent metal that will be positively received by fans and metalheads all over the place. 

 

(9/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Twisted Lobotomy
  2. One to Kill
  3. For the Demented
  4. Pieces of You
  5. The Demon You Know
  6. Phantom Asylum
  7. Altering the Alter
  8. The Way
  9. Dark
  10. Not All There

 

Label: Neverland Music

Genre: Thrash Metal

Release Date EU: November 3rd, 2017

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CD/DVD review ANNIHILATOR "Triple Threat"

Veröffentlicht am 17. Januar 2017 von Markus W. in Annihilator, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, News, CD Review

(8/10) The title of Annihilator’s newest release, “Triple Threat”, gives a pretty good idea of what to expect – at last when it comes to ‘triple’. Of course this new output of Canadian metal heroes isn’t a threat. Actually it’s a pure pleasure to listen to what this package comes with.

“Triple Threat” is more than just a disc, it’s a 3-disc package that comes with a lot of Annihilator. It shows Jeff Waters and his band in various ways. First of all it’s an acoustic disc that asks for attention. Triggered by Van Halen’s 4-tracks unplugged add-on for “A Different Kind of Truth” Canadian guitar wizard Jeff Waters made his longtime wish true. The axeman brought together some musicians, Aaron Homma and Rich Hinks from Annihilator plus longtime friends Marc LaFrance and Pat Robillard, for recording this acoustic album in early summer 2016.

The result is an excellent acoustic set of great Annihilator songs, covering mainly the post “Never, Neverland” era. After the first two crushing records it was the “World on Fire”  record that opened up a bit more, including songs like “Phoenix Rising” with a mainly silent and very melodic approach.

Each of the songs was recorded live and in one go. This means that there aren’t any overdubs included which gives the tunes a very authentic and real expression. Waters described this as one of the biggest challenges since every time somebody did a mistake the recording needed to be restarted.

The second disc features a live show – fully plugged-in. The band filmed and recorded the show at the German Bang Your Head open air in 2016. There were two shows that have been potential candidates for being taped. In the end it was the German shows since the BYH team planned anyhow to film the Twisted Sister show and it was an excellent opportunity to combine efforts – great as a test run for the filming crew and great for Annihilator of recording their shows professionally for a good price tag. A typical win-win situation. When it comes to the setlist there’s nothing to complain about. Milestones from the early days like the awesome “Alice in Hell” have been played as well and new smashers such as “No Way Out”.

“Triple Threat” is a well-chosen package, presenting the band in various ways,and including some behind the scene clips. Annihilator was always a band that used a wider approach and this package documents it in a great way.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

Unplugged: The Watersound Studios Sessions

  1. Sounds Good To Me
  2. Bad Child
  3. Innocent Eyes
  4. Snake In The Grass
  5. Fantastic Things
  6. Holding On
  7. Stonewall
  8. In The Blood
  9. Crystal Ann
  10. Phoenix Rising

Live At The Bang Your Head!!! Festival

  1. King Of The Kill
  2. No Way Out
  3. Creepin’ Again
  4. Set The World On Fire
  5. W.T.Y.D. (Welcome To Your Death)
  6. Never, Neverland
  7. Bliss
  8. Second To None
  9. Refresh The Demon
  10. Alison Hell
  11. Phantasmagoria
  12. Crystal Ann
  13. Phoenix Rising

 

Label: UDR

Genre: Heavy Metal

Release Date EU: January 21st, 2017

CD/DVD review ANNIHILATOR "Triple Threat"
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Interview with Jeff Waters from ANNIHILATOR talking about the new "Triple Threat" release

Veröffentlicht am 6. Januar 2017 von Markus W. in Annihilator, Thrash Metal, Speed Metal, Heavy Metal, News, Acoustic, Live, CD Review, Jeff Waters

Interview with Jeff Waters from ANNIHILATOR talking about the new "Triple Threat" release

Annihilator will publish a new album in January, a release that comes as a package featuring the three discs. "Triple Thread" is its name and Markus' Heavy Music Blog had the chance to get some more insights from bandleader Jeff Waters.

 

Markus’ Heavy Music Blog: Hello Jeff. Good to talk to you again. How are you?

Jeff Waters: I’m good, thanks for asking.

 

MHMB: You came back recently from touring through Europe for a couple of weeks. How was it?

Jeff: Right. I think it’s a week or so that I’m back, slowly getting rid of the jetlag. We started off with a couple of shows in Greece, which was amazing. We continued with some more shows in Central Europe for a month and finished off with some gigs in Russia last week.

 

MHMB: Let’s have a look into the near future with Annihilator releasing a new record. Actually it’s a package, with the first disc containing acoustic versions of different Annihilator songs. So, the question is how the idea came up for doing an acoustic Annihilator record.

Jeff: Since the “King of the Kill” album back in 1994 I always wanted to do such an acoustic thing, but it wasn’t the right time since metal was at an all-time low in those days. Nobody was really interested at that time in listening to acoustic versions of Annihilator songs. After the band sort of rebounded with “Metal”, record sales went up again and since we gained a lot of new fans at that time an acoustic album didn’t make sense either. These fans discovered what we were doing at the time, not knowing the stuff from the 80’s. The whole acoustic thing got more attention again in 2012 when I bought Van Halen’s “Different Kind of Truth”. There were four songs the guys did as a sort of low budget video clips in black & white filmed in Eddie’s studio. When I saw that I loved it. The guys seemed to have so much fun doing it and I thought that I have to do this now. Not necessarily in the same style, but in a way of getting good musicians together including a guy that can sing lead vocals to help me with the songs I can’t sing. However, there were some concerns about an Annihilator acoustic album not selling very well. This led to the idea of recording a live concert and we got very lucky since Bang Your Head planned to film Twisted Sister at the 2016 festival edition. The whole thing ended up in the guys filming the Annihilator show while testing out everything for the filming of Twisted Sister. By putting together all these pieces we all of a sudden had a great fan package including a live show, an acoustic studio set and some sequences of Annihilator’s home base in Ontario.

 

Interview with Jeff Waters from ANNIHILATOR talking about the new "Triple Threat" release

MHMB: How did you pick the songs for the acoustic album?

Jeff: We ended up in being five guys going through the old Annihilator catalogue and picking some of the favourite songs I wanted to do.  If you think back to the first two albums, “Alice in Hell” and “Never, Neverland”, those were real thrash metal records, which means that there wasn’t any chance to do acoustic versions. Things became a bit more diverse, melodic and commercial with “Set the World on Fire” and “King of the Kill”. We figured 10-12 songs would be it. We picked the songs that either I liked or that I thought the fans would like or that Mark and myself could do together when it comes to the vocals. Those were the three criteria for us to choose the songs that ended up on the acoustic disc. What was more stressful than I thought was the recording. We didn’t want to overdub anything and cheat. We said that it has to be live and it has to be one take. For some of the songs the first take was great while for some others we needed maybe 5-10 takes. In the end of it we all agreed that the recording was 5% fun and 95% hell [laughing]. However, the 5% fun was worth everything.

 

MHMB: How easy or difficult was it to re-arrange the songs? I could imagine that tunes like “Phoenix Rising” was a bit easier than something like “Snake in the Grass”. So, was it a big effort to translate these songs into acoustic versions?

Jeff: Actually it was very easy. With the described way of choosing songs and considering that music is your job this kind of work isn’t difficult.

 

MHMB: How easy was it to work together with Mark and Pat since they aren’t part of Annihilator?

Jeff: Mark is a well-known singer who was already a back-up studio singer for so many artists. He also sang on songs like “Phoenix Rising”, “Perfect Angel Eyes” and some of the ballads.  In that sense he was easy to figure out and I just asked him if he could do this with me. The more interesting clashes were with Pat. He is more into country and slide guitar. The only thing I have in common with him is a little bit of blues and a lot of Eddie Van Halen. Pat is more into jamming. Aaron instead is a lot into death metal and also more a perfectionist while Rich is more into math metal. In the end we are five guys with totally different backgrounds and that was the really interesting thing for me.

 

MHMB: Would you think about adding one or two of these acoustic versions to a live set in the near future?

Jeff: We did it together with Dave Padden, I think it was back in 2010, even though it was done with electric guitars. To do something like that with acoustic guitars you need to have more of a budget. You need an extra crew member, you have to have more guitars and you have to ship more guitars. In the end you have to bring at least 5 more guitars with you, plus additional equipment like microphones to do some acoustic stuff. So it’s not easy and cheap to do an acoustic set as part of a tour. And on the other hand, Annihilator is probably not a big enough band for it to make any sense for promoters to have us do a smaller ‘acoustic only’ tour, even though I would love to do it.

 

MHMB: Jeff, it was great talking to you. Thanks for giving us more insight when it comes to “Triple Threat” and thanks for spending some time with Markus’ Heavy Music Blog.

Jeff:  You’re welcome and thanks for having me.

Interview with Jeff Waters from ANNIHILATOR talking about the new "Triple Threat" release
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Former ANNIHILATOR singer/guitarist Dave Padden joins THIRD ION

Veröffentlicht am 30. Januar 2016 von Markus W. in Prog Metal, Third Ion, Annihilator, Heavy Metal, Thrash Metal, News

Prog metal outfit Third Ion, featuring former members of The Devin Townsend Band and Into Eternity, has announced that the band's new vocalist is none other than Dave Padden (ex-Annihilator)! Padden replaces departed vocalist Tyler Gilbert. The band issued the following statement about the lineup change:

"Sadly, after our last gigs, our singer Tyler informed us he was leaving the band. We loved having him, but his heart and passion lie with his own music. We wish him all the best, and good luck with his future! Right away we wasted no time and got right on the search for a new singer. Dave's demo blew us away, and not to mention he has an incredible amount of experience! We have been sitting on this news since the summer, and after getting back from Vancouver this week, with a finished album worth of vocal tracks I am absolutely psyched to announce Dave Padden as the singer for Third Ion!"

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Live review ANNIHILATOR/HARLOTT/ARCHER , Haarlem, 05.11.2015

Veröffentlicht am 6. November 2015 von Markus W. in Annihilator, Harlott, Archer, News, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, Thrash Metal, Live Review

After having played in Tilburg the night before it was Haarlem that hosted the second show of Annihilator, Harlott and Archer in Holland.

This time it have been the guys from Santa Cruz, Archer, that got the role of the opening act. Their more traditional metal worked very well and I was honestly surprised about how many metalheads already filled the Patronaat. OK, I think that the venue was half filled, but this is more than a decent result. And the longer Archer played the more fans found their way towards the stage. 

After short stage rebuild Harlott from Down Under entered the boards that mean the world. Actually the guys have been on stage already during the rebuild and finally waited for the signal to start. Harlott has released recently their new album "Proliferation" that contains some really good thrash metal tracks and the four guys continued with gaining more new fans during the live show. The four-piece went through their 30 minutes show with a lot of self-convidence and fun. Honesty and passion have been the invisible headers for Harlott's show. It was a great expereince to see those guys live.

Archer and Harlott did a great job as support for the main act of this evening in Haarlem - Annihilator.

Live review ANNIHILATOR/HARLOTT/ARCHER , Haarlem, 05.11.2015

Time for Jeff Waters and his gang. Scorpions' "Rock you Like a Hurricane" was chosen to be the intro for Annihilator's show. A good choice, considering the title, but it was almost the entire song. A bit too long when it comes to me.

However, what followed was a 100 minutes speed-, thrash- and metal fireworks. Annihilator shows are always a full blast and it is already due to Jeff Waters' unbound energy that each show is a pure energizer. This man loves to play music and loves to be on stage. Entertainer, axeman and singer, all in one, that's Mr. Waters. He is the undisputed bandleader without any airs and graces. He gave enough spotlight to his band and even a drum solo by Mike Harshaw was part of the gig. Annihilator is more than only a Jeff Waters show. It is metal that stands as a rock, performed by great musicians.

I was curious about how Waters can handle the double function of being singer and guitarist. He did it already before and I must say that he did it well, also tonight. Having him in the center of the stage actually supported his role of being the leader of the pack and mainman of Annihilator. And that the guys is anyhow everywhere on stage during the show is a known fact.

The setlist was a real 'Best of...'. The guys offered a journey through all the different stages of the band. Of course there has been new songs that got live attention. "Creepin' Again", the title track  of the new longplayer, "Suicide Society", and the very catchy "Snap" has been performed. By the way, when it comes to "Snap" I can tell you that the song sounds much harder during a live show than on the album.

Next to those new killers there was the obligatory view back in time. It goes without saying the "Alison Hell" was celebrated by the fans - but not only by them. Dylan Rosenberg from Archer supported with vocals as well as Harlott's Andrew Hudson. All of a sudden it became pretty full on stage and having those guys all together playing Annihilator's classic gave the song an enormus punch.

If you have been in the need for a real energizer on a grey November evening, than the Patronaat has been / would have been the right spot for you. Pure metal was performed, celebrated by enthusiastic fans. Annihilator came 'to rock like a hurricane' and they did. Thank you guys and till the next time in Holland.

Live review ANNIHILATOR/HARLOTT/ARCHER , Haarlem, 05.11.2015

Setlist Annihilator:

  1. Rock You Like a Hurricane (Intro)
  2. King of the Kill
  3. Snap
  4. Suicide Society
  5. Creepin' Away
  6. No Way Out
  7. Set the World on Fire
  8. W.T.Y.D.
  9. Never, Neverland
  10. Tricks and Traps
  11. Bliss
  12. Second to None
  13. Refresh the Demon
  14. City of Ice
  15. Brain Dance
  16. Ultraparanoia
  17. Drum Solo
  18. Phantasmagoria
  19. Chicken and Corn
  20. Kraf Dinner / 21
  21. Alison Hell
  22. Human Insecticide (Encore)

 

Location: Patronaat, Haarlem, Netherlands

Date: 05.11.2015

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CD review ANNIHILATOR "Suicide society"

Veröffentlicht am 6. September 2015 von Markus W. in Annihilator, Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, News, CD Review

(9/10) The fact that Annihilator are still around deserves already a lot of respect. Having had four great records in the beginning, the band had to suffer, like many other bands in metal, from the upcoming grunge boom and the less interest in thrash metal and heavy metal in general. Creativity was more and more replaced by 'survival' which had an impact on the songs, which made 'survival' even more to a challenge. 

Jeff Waters managed to break this vicious circle with the 2007 release "Metal". Nomen et omen could have been the header for this album. Waters began a new era, with a new singer called Dave Padden, and things all of a sudden started to get better and more successful again.

"Annihilator" and "Feast" followed; records that became even more successful than "Metal". The newest kid in Annihilator-town is called "Suicide Society" and it could be the beginning of another Annihilator era. Dave Padden left the band due to personal reasons; a shock for Water - at least for a few days. After having checked some potential new singers, without finding one where thechemistry clicked, the guitar wizard decided to do the vocals himeself. This isn't the first time that we hear Waters also singing, but this time he took some vocal lessons beforehand which I think can be heard back on each track.

As with all Annihilator albums there isn't just 'one sound' on the longplayer. The songs of "Suicide Society" are diverse as always - hold together by Waters' extraordinary guitar play.

The most brutal oldschool thrash songs are "My Revenge", "Narcotic Avenue" and "Death Scent". Those are thrash anthems that take no prisoners. Songs that reflect the earlier days of the band. 

Than there is a tune called "Snap" on the record which is the most unusual song Annihilator ever recorded. It comes with a very dominant bassline, has a dark vibe, is quite slow and very rhythm based. The chorus is very melodic and builds a counterpart to the verse. 

The closer of "Suicide Society" is called "Every Minute". It is a simple straight-forward song that is kept a bit faster in the chorus while having silent elements with a certain ease.

I could imagine the "Suicide Society" becomes another successful record of Jeff Water's Annihilator and we can already positively looking forward to autumn when the band comes to Europe for a headliner tour. Horns up.

 

(9/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Suicide society
  2. My revenge
  3. Snap
  4. Creepin' again
  5. Narcotic avenue
  6. The one you serve
  7. Break, enter
  8. Death scent
  9. Every minute

 

Label: UDR

Genre: Thrash Metal

Release date: September 18th, 2015

CD review ANNIHILATOR "Suicide society"
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Interview with Jeff Waters from ANNIHILATOR

Veröffentlicht am 7. August 2015 von Markus W. in Annihilator, News, Interview, Power Metal, Speed Metal, Thrash Metal, Jeff Waters, Heavy Metal

Interview with Jeff Waters from ANNIHILATOR

A few days ago I had the chance to talk with Jeff Waters about the upcoming Annihilator album “Suicide society”. The Canadian guitar wizard was in a very good mood and talked about the new longplayer, the Annihilator history and if he might have a chance to meet his old friends of Savatage in Wacken.

 

MHMB: Hej Jeff. Good have you on the phone. How are you?

Jeff Waters: I’m good, thanks. I’m here in Hannover looking forward to see AC/DC tonight with around 88.000 fans.

 

MHMB: That sounds fantastic. I have seen them a few weeks ago in Munich and I can tell you, it was amazing.

Jeff: I’m very much looking forward to see their great stage show.

 

MHMB: Absolutely. And the light show was exactly how it needs to be combined with a sound that was perfect too.

Jeff: I think they have enough money they can afford a good soundman (he said with a smile).

 

MHMB: How are things going right now with your band? Annihilator has a new album ready to be released.

Jeff: Yeah. There is a lot of work to do here. It’s one of those ‘rare’ CD’s where you think that everything’s being normal and than all of a sudden things change. Our distributor (Warner) talked to our label (UDR) and they wanted a music video for “Suicide society” and “Snap” – two of the songs on the new record. So they called us up at last minute and said that they needed me and the band coming over to Europe to do the videos. This was on pretty short notice. Having just two weeks to come up with concepts, ideas, locations and budgets isn’t a lot of time. What I was informed about was that I didn’t need to worry about the budget; we just have to do it. It was the first time somebody said “don’t worry about the budget”. The moment I heard this I was thinking about a very small low-budget production with maybe three people on the crew and the cameras. In the end it was 14 people on the crew and three different cameramen on three different types of cameras. It was a real professional video shoot and we did two of them. This is something that didn’t happen to me since “King of the kill”. And after all this the label called me up on Friday and said “We want a third video”. Three videos!!! Usually I have to debate to get one. That was a first sign that something might be different with the new record.

 

MHMB: That sounds great and I think it’s quite the opposite of what happens to a lot of bands in these days.

Jeff: Right. I had a talk with Jay (A&R at UDR) and we had a look into the numbers. The first four Annihilator records have been the big ones and they had four different singers on those first four albums.

 

MHMB: Indeed, I can remember that.

Jeff: I think no other hardrock- or heavy metal band has done four different records with four different singers with each of them being successful in many countries. But than our record sales went down, like most other metal bands. Quite some metal bands actually lost their record deal in those days and retired. There was no way for a lot of metal bands to continue after 1993. Some groups like Overkill, Exodus, Testament and Annihilator – we kept on going in smaller/medium levels. Annihilator was really dropping sales from 1996 onwards and that was explainable. It was the industry. Such a situation, when metal is going down and down, is very depressing for an artist. And when you’re depressed and don’t see a good future. This means that you don’t get motivated as well and your songs are probably not as good as they could be. That’s what happened to me. The whole thing became more ‘survival’ than ‘love’. Not that the ‘love’ for metal was entirely gone, but the percentage of ‘survival’ went up.

It was in 2007 when we did an album called “Metal”. This record became a turning point for Annihilator. The label informed me that Annihilator sold more records than what we usually sold. 2010 we did the self-titled record and we sold more. Than came “Feast” with UDR records and bang, we sold more. So again, those are two major things. The first four CD’s with four different singers and all the albums being successful; than we went down for a long time and than, in a time when almost every artist is selling less and less, we go for more and more and more.

 

MHMB: It’s interesting listening to all this, because when I prepared the interview I was also looking back in time. And came up with the same thought. It was the first 3-4 Annihilator albums that really impressed me and than it was the “Metal” album that brought back the old strength of the Annihilator sound.

Jeff: Yeah, it’s a kind of funny and it’s a very interesting story. I mean, it is a story of survival, a story of real love for what you do, a story of not giving up and a story of luck.

 

MHMB: And to make things even crazier is the fact that it has been one constant singer, Dave Padden, on the last three successful albums.

Jeff: True. So we had the multi-singer period and we had the Dave Padden era.

Photo: UDR (Promotion)

Photo: UDR (Promotion)

MHMB: So what’s coming next? I heard that Dave left the band.

Jeff: Oh yes. He told me in December of 2014 and it was a big shock for about a week. Dave explained to me why he quit and after a week of shock I woke up and recognized that I’m maybe not having a training voice but I have some feel. You might like or not like what I’m doing, but I have some feel. And I think this is actually more important than being able to hit notes. If you don’t ‘sell’ the lyrics they are just useless. Punk rock was a good example. You don’t even have to know how to sing, but if you listen to e.g. Randy Rampage – he could not sing a note but he would yell and scream in a way that makes you listening to what he is singing. That was a voice that made your the hair to stand up at your arms. I think that I’m maybe somewhere between Padden and Rampage. I have my own style and it’s not really trained, but at least there is some good attitude.

 

MHMB: Will you continue doing the vocal or are you looking for a new singer?

Jeff: I looked in the first three weeks in December. I had the idea that I had to look for a singer fast. All the music was written and recorded, the lyrics and the melody lines were all finished and all I needed was somebody to step in and sing it. I looked around and talked to a few singers. I realized that it was always one of two schools. It was either the school of the older guys doing the oldschool heavy metal and there were the younger guys in the twenties and thirties. Most of them have been influenced by bands like Killswitch Engage and Machine Head, with the screams and the clean melodic vocals. I wanted to get someone who was both and I got nothing. I couldn’t find anyone and I decided: ‘I just do it’. And since I actually don’t really like my voice on the three albums I was singing on I decided this time to take vocal lessons.

 

MHMB: Let’s talk a bit about the new record “Suicide society”. Can you tell us a bit more about the album?

Jeff: It’s quite a diverse record in the sense that there are different styles on the album. It starts off with “Suicide society”, a grooving Megadethy Annihilatorish song. Than you go into something that sounds like it was done in 1985 - a thrash song called “My revenge”. That one is obviously influenced by an early ‘“Master of puppets” kind of ‘-vibe. But than, in the middle of the song, everything stops and it breaks down to a really slow almost “Set the world one fire” era Annihilator. There is also a little Guns & Roses style in there too. You can actually say that there are three songs where you can put your finger on the title and say ‘1985’. “Creeping again” is certainly once more Annihilator 100% back in our demo days.

Something like “Snap” we have never done before. It’s the easiest and most simple song I have ever done. The focus is mainly on the vocals. The last song on the record has nothing to do with the rest of the album.

The last song is more a hardrock, pop, heavy metal song. In general you could say that the new album covers everything – from thrash metal to heavy metal.

 

MHMB: And even with the mentioned diversity, it all sounds like Annihilator. You can identify the Annihilator sound immediately.

Jeff: Yes. And this is the historic good and bad thing for Annihilator. Because if you only like thrash and the really heavy stuff you’re definitely not going to like more than half of the songs, because we are not playing heavy music all the way through. But if you like a sort of melodic heavy metal than you like maybe only half of the record again. So in the end we have three kinds of Annihilator fans. Some who like the real heavy songs, some that like the more melodic metal and some that like both.

 

MHMB: Let’s have a quick look on the lyrics. Where do you take the inspiration from for songs like e.g. the title track “Suicide society”?

Jeff: Well, at some point in most people’s life you start caring about the environment. I have done some things over my life quietly but I don’t want to go out and preach all those things because in fact I’m also guilty sometimes. For example when I smoked cigarettes I threw the cigarette butt out of my car, let it burn and pollute the earth. But as you get older you hopefully start changing things. I was used to always leave the water tap turned on for all the three minutes I was brushing my teeth. I turned it off when I was finished. But after I watched a program on TV I asked myself why I’m not just turn the tap off while I brush my teeth. So you hopefully most of us learn those kind of things over their life.

Another thing is when you turn on the news and you just shake your head and go ‘what in a fuck are we doing as a society’. Destroying the earth, extreme religion terrorism, poison and pesticides in our food and all the stupid medicines we don’t need. You just sit back and question yourself what we are doing as society.

On the other hand there a lot of great people out there who are doing a lot and you think ‘wow’. It feels almost like I haven’t done anything and those people have done so much. I thought that this is a good subject to write a song about. I’m sure it’s not original. Many people wrote about this, but I did it my way.

The only good side to all that is in the very last line of this title song. I wanted to bring it back to a reality where there is a possibility to fix most of the stuff we are doing - whether it is drugs or killings or race issues. But we are running out of time.

All this took me to the idea of the cover too. I didn’t want the cover to be that serious as this subject because if you really think about what’s going on in reality it’s depressing. For the cover I said’ Let’s go a little bit a different direction’. I like the idea where earthlings and the human race is an experiment. We failed the experiment since we are destroying the planet and ourselves. So, whoever made this experiment sends an annihilator, a terminator to just wipe us out and start all over again. That’s where the cover’s coming from.

 

MHMB: Jeff, you’re going on tour in Europe in autumn this year and you’re playing Wacken as well. A band that is also playing there is the legendary Savatage. You have been part of the band. Is there a chance to see the guys again?

Jeff: True. I think I was part of the very last Savatage line-up. I like the band and it was a very exciting time for me. Standing besides Jon Oliva at every show, playing a Flying V through my Marshalls and looking over to Jon Oliva, smiling at me while playing the piano, I thought, this is the coolest thing ever. But I don’t think we will see them because we have a pretty short two and a half weeks festival run this year.

 

MHMB: Can we expect already one or two of the new songs on the setlist for the festival shows this summer?

Jeff: I guess at most of the festivals we don’t play more than 60-75 minutes. There are only one or two festivals this year where we get 90 minutes. There we might throw three new songs in. For Wacken it most probably will be only “Suicide society” since the video will be released in parallel.

 

MHMB: Jeff, is there anything more you want to share with the fans?

Jeff: I just want to say, “Check out the record”. I will not say anything positive about the record because whatever comes out of my mouth is the same stuff every artist is going to say. But to me it is a very exciting record that is definitely something to check-out – and if it is just see ‘Hej Waters is singing? What the hell is going on?’. Just check it out for that reason.

Interview with Jeff Waters from ANNIHILATOR
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New ANNIHILATOR video

Veröffentlicht am 1. August 2015 von Markus W. in Annihilator, News, Video, Jeff Waters, Thrash Metal, Speed Metal, Power Metal, Heavy Metal

Right in time for their Wacken show Annihilator released the first video for the upcoming album "Suicide society". Here comes the title track:

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New album from ANNIHILATOR in September

Veröffentlicht am 9. Juni 2015 von Markus W. in Annihilator, Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, News

Canadian guitar wizard Jeff Waters has been in the studio with Annihilator to work on a new album. "Suicide society" is the name of the new longplayer that will see the light of day in September this year.

After many years together with singer Dave Padden Waters signed this time also responsible for the vocals - again. Padden decided to leave the band in December since he had enough from touring and being away from home for longer periods. This is a loss, but Jeff Water has proven that he is also an excellent man behind the mic.

Having heard the first songs from the album I can tell you already at this stage that "Suicide society" became another raging speed metal album from Annihilator that the fans of the band will like. Stay tuned for more.

 

Tracklist:

  1. Suicide society
  2. My revenge
  3. Snap
  4. Creepin' again
  5. Narcotic avenue
  6. The one you serve
  7. Break, enter
  8. Death scent
  9. Every minute

 

New album from ANNIHILATOR in September
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ANNIHILATOR in Europe in autumn

Veröffentlicht am 17. Januar 2015 von Markus W. in Annihilator, Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, Power Metal, News, Tour

Even though it is still some month to go; Jeff Water's Annihilator are coming to Europe for playing some shows in autumn 2015. Here are the dates:

 

ANNIHILATOR in Europe in autumn
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CD review ANNIHILATOR "FEAST" - re-issued

Veröffentlicht am 29. April 2014 von Markus W. in Annihilator, Thrash Metal, CD Review, News

UDR records re-issued Annihilator's latest album "Feast". In this review I want to focus on the extras of the re-issued version. The details about the original release can be found in  the link further down on this page.

Compared to the original album the new release comes with an extra DVD which shows the show in Wacken 2013. This means that the whole package grows to a 3 disc package - 2 CD's and one DVD. The whole package is coming in a nive ecolbook version with a 3D cover. Zombies get alive and the feast becomes real. A cool idea for the cover.

The DVD comes with 11 songs - all recorded during the show in Wacken 2013. The list of songs can be seen as a journey through the entire Annihilator history - from old classics like "Alison hell" from the debut to newer tunes of the band. The Canadian thrasher have been in a really good mood and obvisoulsy enjoyed playing on one ofEuropes  biggest metal festivals. Understandbale, considering the fact that the last time they played Wacken was then years ago. The energy of the band also infected the crowd. A lot of circling hair in front of the stage proves, that Annihilator has still a huge fan base. 

The sound quality is very good and the same goes for the footage. The whole DVD contains a professional recording.

All in all a nice new version with some extras. If you don't have "Feast" yet and you want to go for it take the re-issue. For all die hard fans and collectors also something to consider. A cool package which provides you with a lot of Annihilator.

 

Tracklist DVD:

  1. Smear campaign
  2. King of the kill
  3. No way out
  4. Clown parade
  5. Set the world on fire
  6. Welcome to your death
  7. Funpalace
  8. I am in command
  9. No zone
  10. Fiasco
  11. Alison hell

 

Label: UDR records

Genre: Thrash Metal

 

Photo: Markus Wiedenmann

Photo: Markus Wiedenmann

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ANNIHILATOR will play festivals in Europe in 2014

Veröffentlicht am 27. Januar 2014 von Markus W. in Annihilator, Thrash Metal, News, Tour

Canadian thrashers Annihilator will play some festivals in Europe this summer. Here are the dates:

 

06.06.2014 SWE Sölvesborg Sweden Rock Festival
08.06.2014 GER Gelsenkirchen Rock Hard Festival
14.06.2014 GER Weismain Legacy Open Air
20.06.2014 NED Dokkum Dokkem Open Air
22.06.2014 FRA Clisson Hellfest
27.06.2014 BEL Dessel Graspop Metal Meeting
28.06.2014 TCH Spálené Poříčí Basin Fire Fest
20.07.2014 ITA Bari Total Metalfest
08.08.2014 ESP Villena Leyendas del Rock Festival

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CD review ANNIHILATOR "Feast"

Veröffentlicht am 10. August 2013 von Markus W. in Annihilator, Thrash Metal, CD Review

August 23 is the release date for the new Annihilator album. The good thing with Annihilator nowadays is, that the line-up seems to be more stable than in the past which definitely contributes to good song writing. "Feast", that's the title of the record, will be number 13 of one of Canada's best thrash metal bands. And a feast is what your ears can expect.

"Feast" starts with "Deadlock" and "No way out" which are two typical Annihilator tracks. They have a lot of energy, are pretty fast and have the typical Annihilator vocal lines. With "Smear campaign" the band reduces their speed, which is good, since it makes the album more varied. The first surprise is "No surrender". I thought, that I was listening to a song of the Red Hot Chili Peppers, since it starts with a bassline which is more typical for them than for Annihilator. But after a while the song has a break and the typical staccato riffs of Jeff Waters takes over. I like the experimenting parts of Annihilator, since they are still keeping their style. The next surprise is "Wrapped", because it has some punk elements. It fits good to the band since, as mentioned before, the band doesn't loose their roots. "Perfect angel eyes" is the ballad of the album. Not a revolutionary song, but nice to listen to. "Demon code" and "Fight for the world" are again typical Annihilator songs with heavy and fast guitars, riffs and breaks. "One falls, two rise" is the final track of the album. It starts slow with a good vocal melody and develops to a heavy midtempo rocker with a strong groove.

For me "Feast" is a really good album which makes fun to listen to. It makes fun, because the band shows a lot of variation which makes the album exciting. The production is good and strong, which gives the songs a good atmosphere. I can recommend the album. Well done guys.

And by the way, the bonus disc version comes with an extra CD with 15 best of... tracks of the band.

(9/10)

Tracklist:

  1. Deadlock
  2. No way out
  3. Smear campaign
  4. No surrender
  5. Wrapped
  6. Perfect angel eyes
  7. Demon code
  8. Fight the world
  9. One falls, two rise

Bonus disc:

  1. Fun palace
  2. Alison hell
  3. King of the kill
  4. Never, neverland
  5. Set the world on fire
  6. Welcome to your death W.T.Y.D.
  7. Nozone
  8. Bloodbath
  9. 21
  10. Stonewall
  11. Ultra motion
  12. Time bomb
  13. Refresh the demon
  14. World salad
  15. Brain dance

Label: UDR

Genre: Thrash Metal

CD review ANNIHILATOR "Feast"
CD review ANNIHILATOR "Feast"
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