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Live review DYNAMO METAL FEST 2017, 15.07.2017, Eindhoven

Veröffentlicht am 16. Juli 2017 von Markus W. in Dynamo Metal Fest, Vuur, Toxik, Exodus, Entombed AD, Testament, Gojira, News, Live, Tour, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, Thrash Metal, Bay Area, Prong, DFM, DFM2017, Devin Townsend Project, White Boy Wasted, Groove Metal, Prog Metal, Hardcore, Live Review

Live review DYNAMO METAL FEST 2017, 15.07.2017, Eindhoven

What a prefect day for a metal festival. Overcast, a few sunrays, a nice temperature, some good bands and a lot of metal - perfect conditions for a great day out. However, the first challenge was to get to Eindhoven. This has nothing to do with the DMF. It was more the vacation period that brought many people on the roads that Saturday, which led to some traffic jams and delays.

After a bit of a hassle on the highways I finally made it to Ijssportcentrum, unfortunately a bit to late for White Boy Wasted, a young local band from Eindhoven that got the chance to open this years edition of the DMF.

 

The first band I could witness was Vuur, the new band of singer Anneke van Giersbergen. The band is working right now on the debut which will be released via InsideOut on October 20th,2017 and after having heard the first single release “Days Go By – London” there was some curiosity when it comes to songs and live performance. Vuur are no rookies. There is a lot of experience in this band and therefore the show was done in a perfect balance between passion for the new and professionalism on the other hand. It was amazing how good the five-piece performed when it comes to tightness and harmony, esp. knowing that they haven’t had too many live shows together to date. Vuur created more appetite for the upcoming album and the long queue during the signing session showed clearly the status of Anneke van Giersbergen and band.

Live review DYNAMO METAL FEST 2017, 15.07.2017, Eindhoven

Next to the two Dutch bands at the top of the batting order the DMF 17 was characterized by thrash metal; oldschool thrash metal to be precise. The billing included bands such as Testament, with New York City based Toxik being the first one to enter the stage. The band, that had two great releases at the end of the eighties, is back with full force. Josh Christian and band mates have been the first highlight that day. Going through material of the old days, but also songs from the recent EP "Breaking Class" created some first circle pits and it felt like Holland was intensively waiting for Toxik to return to Eindhoven RockCity. The four-piece band played an excellent show featuring furious guitar solos by main man Josh Christian. These guys are hungry and so are the fans.

Live review DYNAMO METAL FEST 2017, 15.07.2017, Eindhoven

Let’s stay for another 50 minutes at the American East Coast. After Toxik created a lot of excitement it was up to New York City-based Prong to take things to a next level - and they did. Tommy Victor and Co. built the setlist around classics with only one new tune from the next album played that day (“Divide and Conquer”). The rest of the setlist was a kind of ‘Best of…', including anthems such as “Beg to Differ” and “Broken Peace”.  Prong set down an energetic show that was very well received by the crowd. The wall of sound these guys build as trio continuously astonishes me. Prong on stage is always an experience you shouldn't miss and today was for sure no exception.

Live review DYNAMO METAL FEST 2017, 15.07.2017, Eindhoven

What we haven't heard so far was some death metal. Last year it was Swedish At The Gates that brought some growls to Eindhoven and this year it's their compatriots Entombed A.D. that nailed down a harsh and brutal show. After a quite long intro the quintet acted as a sonic wrecking ball. These five guys fired on all cylinders, leading to a lot of movement in the crowd. The beauty with the DMF is the billing. There is always some variety in the billing by still following a certain pattern of metal. Death metal, thrash metal and some more complex metal get together in a perfect manner; all combined to a running order that keeps the thrill alive. Dutch metal fans have enjoyed the ‘Vikings’ and therefore it wasn't very surprising that Entombed A.D. extended their show with a few minutes. Allt brå.

Live review DYNAMO METAL FEST 2017, 15.07.2017, Eindhoven

As earlier mentioned, it was thrash metal that got a bit more attention this year. Exodus came to Holland, having a setlist in their bag that lead to pure excitement. Exodus is pure thrash metal without any frills or decoration. These guys don’t take any prisoners; they’re burning down the house. Also the five-piece from the Bay Area kept their set more oldschool with songs like “Piranha” and ”The Toxic Waltz” acting has highly appreciated icons, not to forget “Bonded By Blood”. As quite some other bands also Exodus has a long connection to Eindhoven and the Dynamo with having played their first show in Brabant 29 years ago and over all these years the quintet could keep the spirit alive. These guys are authentic, real, and heavy, being fully charged with metal energy that made Steve Souza already watch the shows of Toxik and Prong. Exodus was the real highlight on this year’s DFM and a true winner.

Live review DYNAMO METAL FEST 2017, 15.07.2017, Eindhoven

Time for some more craziness? Of course. Devin Townsend stopped with his Devin Townsend Project at this year's DMF and spiced-up the metal feast at the ‘Ijsbaan’. The Canadian guitar wizard is a great entertainer with excellent guitar skills and a full bag of enthusiasm. The crowd might got a bit tired after already 6 hours of great metal, but Townsend would not be Townsend if he couldn’t gain the fans' attention in a minute. There's no way to escape from the energy that seems to be endless with Townsend. In addition it was a smart move to use the opportunity to also perform quite some songs together with Anneke van Giersbergen. It’s the beauty of a festival that these things can be more easily arranged than normal and metalheads in Eindhoven appreciated these 60 minutes a lot. The Devin Townsend Project music added another flavor to the DMF, leading to a big cheer for the British Columbia-based musician and his hard working band mates.

Live review DYNAMO METAL FEST 2017, 15.07.2017, Eindhoven

One of the bands many fans came for was Bay Area thrash legend Testament. The band was already announced during last year’s edition and the fact that they had their first show outside America at the Dynamo festival 30 years ago was a promising fact for a great show. Unfortunately things went slightly different. Changing the scenery on stage normally took between20 to 30 minutes, but after 45 minutes there was still no Testament on stage. In place of the band the stage crew did one microphone check after the other and you could sense already that there’s something going wrong. I think it would have been good, if someone had informed the patiently waiting crowd about what’s the situation. Finally, after one hour waiting time the band entered the stage with “Over the Wall”. In a split second everybody forgot the long wait since an oldschool set seemed to compensate for the late start. However, due to the technical problems the band lost half of their playing time. The planned schedule ruled with Testament finishing their gig after 30 minutes with “Disciples of the Watch”. Based on whatever reason, the show was good, but the missed playing time, a non-appearance at the scheduled signing session and no merchandise left a bit of a sour taste with fans discussing it even on their way home.

Live review DYNAMO METAL FEST 2017, 15.07.2017, Eindhoven

After this stroke of fate quite some fans decided to start their way home. They missed though a brilliant show of French metal passionitas Gojira. The quartet could make use of a full light show and what you got to see was impressive. Light, smoke fountains and fire - all part of the show and used as a completion to their great music. This show was treat that for eyes and ears. I have to admit that I haven’t seen the band on stage till yesterday, but what I saw was a jaw-dropping good metal show of a band that had the best sound of the day. The setlist gave a good overview over all phases of the band's creation with a focus on the latest album “Magma”. Gojira is definitely a big player these days and the right headliner for the 2017 DMF. The quartet was the anticipated grand finale, rounding off an exciting metal day with a lot of good stuff and a downer.

 

This years DMF was the third edition and it was with 10,000 fans the biggest one to date. In general things have been arranged in a good way with some bottlenecks when it comes to the bar and the return of DMF coins. Prices for drinks and food have been fair even though the food offer could be bit wider next year with an also slightly increased quality. The burgers were really poor.

 

However, there are always things that can be improved and the mentioned will not take away a very positive impression of the DMF with the next year version being in the planning phase already. There’s a first act announced. Canadian metal icon Annihilator will come to Eindhoven and if I could have a wish the DMF team should continue with Canada by also bringing Voivod to Brabant. Let’s hope and see (or address it on the DMF FB site if you think the same).

Live review DYNAMO METAL FEST 2017, 15.07.2017, Eindhoven

Location: Ijssportcentrum, Eindhoven, The Netherlands

Date: June 15th, 2017

For Setlists click HERE

For some more Photos done by Paul Verhagen click HERE

Kommentare

CD review ALEX SKOLNICK TRIO "Live Unbound"

Veröffentlicht am 17. März 2017 von Markus W. in Alex Skolnick Trio, AST, CD Review, Jazz, Testament, Rock, Scorpions, Aerosmith, News

(*/10)I have to admit that jazz normally doesn't belong to my favorite styles of music and when entering the world of free jazz even leads to confusion. However, this album is maybe the foot in the door to jazz music. It’s not that it's the songs itself that brought the curiosity. It's Alex Skolnick's name that led to fact me listening to "Live Unbound".

As the title says, it's an album with a live component. It includes seven songs of which the first ones have been recorded in December 2014 live at Spin Studios New York.

"Unbound" and "Culture Shock" are two brand new songs that kick off the album and even non-jazz fans can find their way into these tracks. It's great music for a relaxed Sunday afternoon, performed by three great musicians.

The next three songs, "Shades of Grey", "99/09" and "Veritas" are know from earlier studio releases while the live versions of Aerosmith's "Dream On" and "Still Loving You" show the classics with a new livery. Totally re-arranged and with a fully new expression these rock classic shine in new splendor. "Dream On" comes in a ten minutes version while "Still Loving You" shines for almost twenty minutes with a quite bluesy ending.

Alex Skolnick's passion is the guitar and not the genre and the Alex Skolnick proves this very well. Even though you might be a die-hard Testament fans you should listen to this album because it shows another side of one of the most influential thrash metal guitarist.

 

(*/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Unbound
  2. Culture Shock
  3. Shades of Grey
  4. 99/09
  5. Veritas
  6. Dream On
  7. Still Lovin' You

 

Genre: Jazz

Release Date EU: September 16th, 2016

CD review ALEX SKOLNICK TRIO "Live Unbound"
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12 Most Favorite Concert Photos 2016

Veröffentlicht am 31. Dezember 2016 von Markus W. in Amorphis, Amon Amarth, Europe, Archer Nation, Queensryche, Doro, Undertow, Testament, Honeymoon Disease, Anvil, Long Distance Calling, Dark Funeral, Heavy Metal, Hardrock, News, Power Metal, Doom Metal, Thrash Metal, Black Metal, Death Metal, Rock, Cultuurpodium De Boerderij, 013, Gebr. de Nobel, Dudok, Live, Photos

New Year's Eve is an excellent moment in time to look back on the last 12 months and what's better than scrolling through photos made that year. I challenged myself in choosing my 12 favorites, which was not a too easy exercise. Anyhow, I've chosen these photos from various shows in 2016.

Have a good start in 2017 and keep on rocking. Thanks for all your support \m/

 

All photos by Markus Wiedenmann

Amorphis, Tilburg, December 2016

Amorphis, Tilburg, December 2016

Doro, Leiden, November 2016

Doro, Leiden, November 2016

Europe, Utrecht, November 2016

Europe, Utrecht, November 2016

Dark Funeral, Leiden, November 2016

Dark Funeral, Leiden, November 2016

Amon Amarth, Tilburg, November 29016

Amon Amarth, Tilburg, November 29016

Testament, Tilburg, November 2016

Testament, Tilburg, November 2016

Honeymoon Disease, Leiden, October 2016

Honeymoon Disease, Leiden, October 2016

Archer Nation, Zoetermeer, August 2016

Archer Nation, Zoetermeer, August 2016

Queensryche, Zoetermeer, August 2016

Queensryche, Zoetermeer, August 2016

Long Distance Calling, Tilburg, May 2016

Long Distance Calling, Tilburg, May 2016

Anvil, Tilburg, April 2016

Anvil, Tilburg, April 2016

Undertow, Giengen, January 2016

Undertow, Giengen, January 2016

Just in case you want to see them all - HERE they are.

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Live review AMON AMARTH / TESTAMENT / GRAND MAGUS, 013, Tilburg, 06.11.2016

Veröffentlicht am 7. November 2016 von Markus W. in Amon Marth, Testament, Grad Magus, Live Review, Thrash Metal, Death Metal, Heavy Metal, News, Power Metal

It was a few days ago when Swedish Vikings of Amon Amarth embarked on their European autumn tour, a trip that started in Germany with returning back to Scandinavia with the last show of this tour in Copenhagen sharp before Christmas. On their way down south the guys from Stockholm also had a stop in Tilburg for providing some Viking metal to their Dutch supporters.

Amon Amarth had a few more guys joining them on the road. Their fellow countrymen Grand Magus got the opening slot, followed by Californian thrash legends Testament. This package belongs to one of the best ones this year when it comes to raw and wild metal. Therefor it was a small surprise that the 013 wasn’t fully sold out.

Anyhow, the venue was already pretty much packed when Grand Magus entered the stage. The trio can fall back on a long list of songs and the seven tracks performed that night represented the different stages of the band very well. Two songs from “Hammer of the North” and “Iron Will’ built the base for their set. It’s probably not the easiest thing to go on stage first, but Grand Magus didn’t care and nailed down a great show which gave them many credits from the audience. The room got filled up more and more and in the end it was an enthusiastic sing-a-long part with the fans that ended this gig. Besides that it was also the first time that night for a common ‘Skol’, a word we got to hear more often that night.

Live review AMON AMARTH / TESTAMENT / GRAND MAGUS, 013, Tilburg, 06.11.2016
Live review AMON AMARTH / TESTAMENT / GRAND MAGUS, 013, Tilburg, 06.11.2016

Thrash dinosaur Testament was next. “Brotherhood of the Snake” and “Dark Roots of the Earth” provided half of the songs played that night combined with older songs, of which the “The New Order” release stood in focus. Testament and Holland is a long lasting relationship that strated with the guys playing in Eindhoven already back in 1987. Therefor it was almost a given that fan reaction have been very positive, celebrating each note played that night. The moment when the crowd really went wild was when classics like “Into the Pit” and “Over the Wall” turned the 013 into a madhouse. Besides all the positive and the passion there was a feeling of routine during the entire show, but maybe just a personal impression. After ten songs Testament said good-bye for the moment, coming back end of summer 2017. The Bay Area legend will headline the upcoming Dynamo Metalfest in Eindhoven, celebrating the 30st anniversary of their first show in the South of Holland.

Live review AMON AMARTH / TESTAMENT / GRAND MAGUS, 013, Tilburg, 06.11.2016
Live review AMON AMARTH / TESTAMENT / GRAND MAGUS, 013, Tilburg, 06.11.2016
Live review AMON AMARTH / TESTAMENT / GRAND MAGUS, 013, Tilburg, 06.11.2016

A short break gave everybody the chance to prepare their drinking horns and viking helmets for what was next on the list – it was time for Amon Amarth. The five-piece band played a show that was around 100 minutes long and not a stone was left standing afterwards. This show included everything a good metal concert needs to contain. First of all there are the songs. Amon Amarth found this magical mix of harsh metal with Johan Hegg’s raw and unique vocals that goes hand in hand with melodic guitar lines and a hammering beat. This makes Amon Amarth attractive for a wide group of fans, something that was confirmed by looking at the audience that night. The show was built around the current longplayer “Jomsviking”. The theme of this record also steered the stage design. The drumkit sat enthroned on the top of a huge Viking helmet, surrounded by podia which were used by the band many times. Next to the scenery it was ‘vikings’ that joined the band on stage for “Deceiver of the Gods”, archers were aiming for imaginary targets during “One Thousand Burning Arrows” and also the ‘wolf man’ joined in for “Father of the Wolf”. All this led to a great mixture of music supporting the visuals and vice versa. This gig was a complete metal experience.

Amon Amarth’s show was a comprehensive victory. “Destroyer of the Universe” turned the venue into a pit and “Death in Fire” was cherished with a smaller ‘wall of death’. And when, if not during an Amon Amarth show, you see fans sitting on the floor, rowing an imaginary Viking boat through stormy sea water? Just awesome. The same goes for the short ‘Underberg-break’ that was needed after “Deceiver of the Gods”, another moment for a loud ‘Skol’. The closer of this passionate metal night was “Twilight of the Thunder God” which demanded the final reserves of power for fans and band.

An Amon Amarth show is more than just music performed live. The intensity of such a concert can’t be described – it’s something you need to experience.

Live review AMON AMARTH / TESTAMENT / GRAND MAGUS, 013, Tilburg, 06.11.2016
Live review AMON AMARTH / TESTAMENT / GRAND MAGUS, 013, Tilburg, 06.11.2016
Live review AMON AMARTH / TESTAMENT / GRAND MAGUS, 013, Tilburg, 06.11.2016
Live review AMON AMARTH / TESTAMENT / GRAND MAGUS, 013, Tilburg, 06.11.2016

Setlist Amon Amarth:

  1. The Pursuit of Vikings
  2. As Loke Falls
  3. First Kill
  4. The Way of Vikings
  5. At Dawn's First Light
  6. Cry of the Black Birds
  7. Deceiver of the Gods
  8. On a Sea of Blood
  9. Destroyer of the Universe
  10. Death in Fire
  11. One Thousand Burning Arrows
  12. Father of the Wolf
  13. Runes to My Memory
  14. War of the Gods
  15. Raise Your Horns (Encore)
  16. Guardians of Asgaard (Encore)
  17. Twilight of the Thunder God (Encore)

 

Setlist Testament:

  1. Brotherhood of the Snake
  2. Rise Up
  3. The Pale King
  4. Disciples of the Watch
  5. The New Order
  6. Dark Roots of Earth
  7. Stronghold
  8. Into the Pit
  9. Over the Wall
  10. The Formation of Damnation

 

Setlist Grand Magus:

  1. I, The Jury
  2. Sword of the Oceean
  3. Varagian
  4. Steel vs Steel
  5. Iron Will
  6. Like the Oar Strikes the Water
  7. Hammer of the North

 

Location: 013, Tilburg, The Netherlands

Date: November 6, 2016

Kommentare

CD review TESTAMENT "Brotherhood of the Snake"

Veröffentlicht am 23. Oktober 2016 von Markus W. in Testament, Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, CD Review, News

(9/10) A new Testament album is always creating excitement, at least with me. This five-piece group always delivered great quality - since more than three decades.

What started under the flag of Legacy in 1983 developed to one of the most important thrash bands with eleven records of which most belong to the best Bay Area thrash metal ever brought up to surface.

The next strike is now close to release date and it's called "Brotherhood of the Snake". It's not a concept album even though some of the tracks are theme-wise connected. The 'Brotherhood of the Snake' is, true or not, going back on some old Sumerian scriptures telling the story of a secret society set-up by an alien named Ea. Without going too much into detail, it was this story that acted as a source of inspiration for some of the sings and the lyrics, like "The Pale King".

The album starts furious. From the first note onwards all trademarks are present and it's a typical Testament riff that introduces the title track. This tune has a merciless approach, something that goes for the entire record. In this context the band did the right choice of deciding on this song as the name giver.

A classic thrash riff kicks off "The Pale King". It's a hard pushing number that is 100% Bay Area thrash. "Stronghold" takes it over and marks the third leg of this metal journey. The more I'm listening to the album the more memories from the mid 80's come to my mind. Testament capture the vibe of those days, esp. from the “The New Order” era, and package it in a modern sound expression.

"Seven Seals" is kept in a more moderate pace without losing intensity, something that also goes for "Born on a Rut" with its melodic chorus. Time for another metallic sledgehammer, time for "Centuries of Suffering". This tune is spot on with the band focussing on the essence of their sound. Again I was reminded of the Legacy-days.

The galloping "Neptune’s Spear" can easily live up to the quality of the mentioned tracks before "Black Jack", one of the fast tracks, takes your breath. It's a raging song with Chuck Billy at his best.

"Canna Business" is another example for these songs that doesn't take any prisoners. Three and a half minutes long the track reflects puristic thrash metal on a high technical level - a combination that might sound like a contradiction, but the band shows that it isn't.

With "The Number Game" the end of this fantastic longplayer comes closer. It's the last song on "Brotherhood of the Snake" and the tune brings it home. A powering rhythm section, monstrous riffs and Billy's excellent thrash voice makes this song to a grand finale.

"Brotherhood of the Snake" underlines that Testament belongs to the spearhead of thrash metal. These five guys kept the early spirit of thrash metal and translated it into the here and know. Testament doesn't have to reinvent their sound. They develop their trademarks with each longplayer and in the end it's like with good wine - the older the better.

 

(9/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Brotherhood of the Snake
  2. The Pale King
  3. Stronghold
  4. Seven Seals
  5. Born In a Rut
  6. Centuries of Suffering
  7. Neptune’s Spear
  8. Black Jack
  9. Canna Business
  10. The Number Game

 

Label: Nuclear Blast

Genre: Thrash Metal

Release Date: October 28th, 2016

CD review TESTAMENT "Brotherhood of the Snake"
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CD review TOXIC WALTZ "From a Distant View"

Veröffentlicht am 20. März 2016 von Markus W. in Toxic Waltz, Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal, News, CD Review, Exodus, Testament

(8/10) Bavarian thrashers Toxic Waltz have their next album in the starting blocks, ready to be shipped to the record stores. "Decades of Pain" was the bands debut which was released in 2014. The new album seamlessly continues where the guys from Landsberg stopped two years ago.

The new record "From a Distant View" is full of Bay Area-based thrash metal that takes its most inspiration from bands like Exodus (see the name of the band) and Testament. Even though Jimi, Alex and the gang didn't change their sound dramatically there is still some development that you can hear in most of the songs.

Compared to the debut, that new album sounds more dynamic and lively. The first album was really good, but the new record is better. There are more twists and surprises in most of the songs, something the debut was lacking. Then there are very well placed leads and raging solos that have been further developed and reached a next level. And last but not least there are some metalcore influences here and there which gives Toxic Waltz' sound partly a new expression without denying the thrash roots.

Next to all this I think that the extensive touring had some influences on the new album. Toxic Waltz sounds very thight on "From a Distant View", something that's very much supported by a forceful sound the album got.

Toxic Waltz' second album is a well-crafted metal release that is the second pillar of the bands foundation in German/European thrash metal. Join the waltz.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Deify
  2. Blindness
  3. Generosity Exploided
  4. From a Distant View
  5. Off to the Road
  6. Secret War
  7. The Gold You Want
  8. 13 Days to Live
  9. Eternal Aftermath
  10. Mass Atrocity

 

Label: Violent Creek

Genre: Thrash Metal

Release Date EU: March 18th, 2016

 

 

 

CD review TOXIC WALTZ "From a Distant View"
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CD review ABATTOIR "Vicious attack" re-release

Veröffentlicht am 22. Juni 2015 von Markus W. in Abattoit, Overkill, Thrash Metal, Speed Metal, Heavy Metal, News, CD Review, Metallica, Testament

(7/10) I guess that it's a few small things that sometimes decide of being successful or not. Listening to the latest re-release of Abattoir's "Vicious attack" triggered this thought again. The band, that was founded in 1982, had the same starting conditions as genre collesgues from e.g. Overkill. While the New York five-piece is still around, releasing great albums and play well perceived shows it became more quiet around Abattoir. There have been even times when the band disbanded, reunited just to split up again a few years later.
 
But who knows; maybe the newest re-release if their debut album that might break the spell and brings them back again. "Vicious attack" was the name of the debut album that was initially released back in 1985. The eight songs are all raw thrash metal tracks that presents a hungry young band. The joy with this album is this unique spirit from the eighties thrash metal times. Abattoir's songs aren't the most technical advanced ones. But it's metal that hits you right into the face.
Brutal riffs like in "Stronger than evil" are just awesome. This is pure power, combined with passion and dedication.
 
Also the title track with the dominant bassline are great. It feels like Overkill meets US metal. If it's needed to place a cover version on an eight song album can be discussed. But since it is a cool and respectless version of Motörhead's "Ace of spades" it's more than OK.
 
I'm not sure if this re-release will put Abattoir more into the spotlight. But I'm sure that the band will gain some new friends which might lead to a new album. I appreciated the trip back to a time when I discovered my passion for metal.
 
 
(7/10)
 
 
Tracklist:
  1. Screams from the grave
  2. Vicious attack
  3. The enemy
  4. Ace of spades
  5. The living & the dead
  6. Stronger than evil
  7. Don't walk alone
  8. Game of death
 
Label: Marquee Records
Genre: Thrash Metal
CD review ABATTOIR "Vicious attack" re-release
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CD review EXODUS "Blood in blood out"

Veröffentlicht am 10. Oktober 2014 von Markus W. in Exodus, Metallica, Testament, Thrash Metal, Heavy Metal, Speed Metal, CD Review, News

(9/10) I can remember 1987 when I heard Exodus' "Pleasure of the flesh" for the first time. It was an album that blew me away. Of course it was the peak of the Bay Area thrash scene with bands like Metallica, Testament. Vio-lence... but Exodus had something extra already at that time. It was that raw energy that the band spread which was authentic and special.

Since then I'm following the band and have seen the good ("Pleasue of the flesh") and bad times (like "Force of habit"). However, it was great to see that the band had the awesome comeback in 2004 with "Tempo of the damned". That was really good metal stuff. 

One important factor for the successful Exodus records was Zetro Souza. It is the vocals of the guy which added so much to the Exodus sound. Not that Rob Dukes, who followed him as singer of the band, did a bad job on the other albums. I actually appreciate very much what he did so far with Generation Kill. But Zetro vocals fit so perfect to Exodus - it's just a match.

Therefore I was pretty happy that Zetro is back again at Exodus (hopefully still doing some more stuff with Hatriot too). But it is not only him. It is the entire line-up with Holt, Hunting, Gibson and Altus that delivered a masterpiece of thrash metal. Those guys really seem to fit together very well. They stand as one unit.

Now, let's have a look into "Blood in blood out". The title is an idea of Gary Holt. While watching the TV series "Gangland" the guitarist explained that he has seen similarities with the band. You're bleeding to get in and you're bleeding to get out. Of course not literally, but...

Compared to the more complex and epic 'Exhibit' albums the new strike is spot-on. The songs are straighforward and don't take any prisoners. The start into the album is a bit unusual. Exodus decided to begin with samples that sounds together with the joining guitars like from the "Judgement night" soundtrack. But this impression doesn't last long. The typical Exodus riff makes it clear - we are talking thrash metal.

The title track "Blood in blood out" continues this trip. The blazing fast song comes with a galloping rhythm and monstrous leads. 

Some songs are also to highlight when it comes to the lyrics. The fast "Collateral damage" is about the power of some people in executive suites and the fact that they steer/influence the life of the many. And the tune comes with a massive chorus too. Cool lyrics, cool sound. Another track with a very up-to-date topic is "Numb" - a song that broaches the issue of loosing empathy by being overwhelmed of death and murder on TV.

Next to Zetro Souza there are more 'former members that are back'. Kirk Hammett from Metallica joined Exodus for one song. The founding member on the six string had a guest appearance and contributed with a solo on "Salt in wound".

And last but not least it was Chuck Billy from Testament who has a guesst appearance too. He added some vocals (shouts) on the mighty "BTK". 

The bouncer is a reprise of all the before heard trademarks of the band. It's a fast and well-crafted song with some clever breaks along the way and slow, but mighty riff in the middle.

"Blood in, blood out" beacme the excellent thrash record I was hoping for. Good stuff. Go for it.

 

(9/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. Black 13
  2. Blood in blood out
  3. Collateral damage
  4. Salt the wound
  5. Body harvest
  6. BTK
  7. Wrapped in the arms of rage
  8. My last nerve
  9. Numb
  10. Honor killings
  11. Food for the worms

 

Label: Nuclear Balst

Genre: Thrash Metal

 

 

 

 

CD review EXODUS "Blood in blood out"
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CD review THE HAUNTED "Exit wounds"

Veröffentlicht am 23. August 2014 von Markus W. in The Haunted, Thrash Metal, Death Metal, CD Review, News, Testament, In Flames, At The Gates

(8/10) Hard stuff, again from Gothenburg. It is not only In Flames who worked on a new album. Also The Haunted released a new disc with the title "Exit wounds".

The five piece band has already a longer history since they released their first album in 1998. Than the year 2012 came and the band had to face some fundamental changes. Singer Peter Dolving left the band (again) as well as guitarist Anders Björler and drummer Per Möller. This had a big impact on the rest of the gang. All of a sudden it was only Jonas Björler and Patrik Jensen who have been The Haunted. Maybe that's not totally correct. It was the two guys AND their willpower to continue with the band. Without this willpower "Exit wounds" wouldn't have become real. They completed the line up again by adding Adrain Erlandsson (d), Marco Aro (v) and Ola Englund (g). After having heard all this you can imagine that "Exit wounds" is more than just a title. It reflects pretty well the last two years of the band too.

The first vital signs of the quintet happened in January 2014 when they relesed the "Eye of the storm" single followed by the live show on the 70.000 Tons Of Metal cruise.

And now the new record is out in the shops. From a musical standpoint the new disc is a step back into the earlier days. Jensen himself describes the album as mix of "The haunted made me do it" and "Revolver" and I think he is right. One component which underlines this is the fact that ealier band member and singer Marco Aro is back. He does a great job on the album.

"Exit wounds" is much more straight forward than the more melodic and sphereful "Unseen". Not that the predecessor was bad, but the new album hits you right into your face. All 14 songs are right to the point and real thrash metal highlights.

My fave on the album is the grooving "Trend killer". Starting with an echosounder the song continues with  Aro's vocals supported by a very strong bassline. The rest of the track is a real trend killer. It is oldschool metal which sounds awesome. A small sidenote: it's Testament's Chuck Billy who is supporting with a guest appearence on "Trend killer". As a contra point there is "All I have" which is less fast than some other tunes on the album and reminds in the beginning to Crowbar and Down. It's the slow and immensly heavy riff which caracterize this track. But also the fast opener "Cutting teeth" doesn't take any prisoners. It's a right to the point thrash metal anthems with an excellent guitar line. You want to have it short and mean? Check out "My enemy". It's a one minute rage that is breath-taking.

The artwork of the album is standing out too. It a great cover done by Andreas Pettersson who did already the first four records of The Haunted as well.

The Haunted fans will not be disappointed by the new album. It brings you back to the earlier days of the band and I really like the album.

 

(8/10)

 

Tracklist:

  1. 317
  2. Cutting teeth
  3. My salvation
  4. Psychonaut
  5. Eye of the storm
  6. Trend killer
  7. Time (will not heal)
  8. All I have
  9. Temptation
  10. My enemy
  11. Kill the light
  12. This war
  13. Infiltrator
  14. Ghost in the machine

 

Label: Century Media

Genre: Thrash Metal

CD review THE HAUNTED "Exit wounds"
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CD review "SUICIDAL ANGELS "Divide and conquer"

Veröffentlicht am 19. Januar 2014 von Markus W. in Suicidal Angels, Thrash Metal, Metallica, Testament, CD Review, News

(7/10) Suicidal Angels is the number one thrash metal band in Greece. Pioneers in the country at the Mediterranean Sea. Since 2001 the band released a couple of EP's and four full-length albums. After they released "Bloodbath" in 2012 Suicidal Angels put a few days ago their fifth record called "Divide and conquer" out on the market.

What to say about the album? In general "Divide and conquer" became a good thrash metal disc. The band used all ingredients which are needed to serve a powerful thrash metal menu. Most of the songs are up-tempo ones with cool leads, soli placed at the right spot and vocals which are rough, but still no growls. All this fits.

The capabilities of the four-piece is also outside of any discussion. Nick, Angel, Orfeas and Chris play tight together and each of them knows how to handle their instruments. 

You are expecting a 'But'? Yes, you're right. There is a 'but', which is the originality of the songs. Each of the ten songs has for a too many cross-references to other bands, mainly from the Bay Area. "Seed of evil" is a good song, but the riff is comparable to the earlier Metallica. The title track "Divide and conquer" has some Nuclear Assault elements, esp. in the verse, and "Pit of snakes" shows, that also Testament belongs to the faves of Suicidal Angels.

Again, "Divide and conquer" is no bad record. It has a lot of elements where Suicidal Angels can further build on. It's just that you constantly have the feeling that you've heard it already earlier. Maybe the next time.

 

(7/10)

 

 

Tracklist:

  1. Marching over blood
  2. Seed of evil
  3. Divide and conquer
  4. Control the twisted mind
  5. In the grave
  6. Terror is my scream
  7. Pit of snakes
  8. Kneel to the gun
  9. Lost dignity
  10. White wizard

 

Label: NoiseArt Records

Genre: Thrash Metal

CD review "SUICIDAL ANGELS "Divide and conquer"
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