Rise To Fall – Into Zero

Into Zero Cover

Rise To Fall – Into Zero
Release Date: 30/09/2018
Running Time: 47:00
Review by Stephen Moss

“Into Zero” is the fourth album from Rise To Fall. The band classifies their style as Melodic Death Metal and is in the same boat as “In Flames” or “Disarmonia Mundi”. The band’s sound isn’t unique, however, I never got the feeling that they were simply trying to mimic their influences. Listening to the album, you definitely get a sense of who Rise to Fall are and what they stand for as a band.

I absolutely love the way the album starts off. It has an almost science fiction feel to it. The song, ’The Descendant’, starts off soft like gently knocking at the door and then the metal steps up and kicks the freaking door down! This definitely made me excited to see what else the album had to offer.

“Into Zero”, overall, is put together well and definitely does a lot of things right but it also has a couple of things that would have made it more enjoyable for my taste. The tracks do have some variety, however, I would have liked to see a bit more as some of the guitar melodies start to feel a bit repetitive.

You can hear each instrument nicely. I never got the feeling that one person overshadowed another but I would like to have seen the bass stand more on its own rather than just follow the guitar all the time. Lyrics are genuine, raw and filled with emotion and the guitar solos will melt your face! Guitarists Hugo Markaida and Dann Hoyos play fast and seriously shred, yet they are melodic at the same time. Last, but not least, Xabier del Val is the drummer, he’s amazing and the double bass in this album is SICK! I absolutely love the drums on this album. It’s a beautiful balance that Rise To Fall were able to achieve.

My top three songs are ‘Survivor’, ‘Effects Of The Terrestrial Syndrome’ and ‘The Descendant’.

01 The Descendant
02 In The Wrong Hands
03 Acid Drops
04 House Of Crosses
05 Virgin Land
06 The Empress
07 Temptation Feeds On Our Weaknesses
08 Zero Hour
09 Effects Of The Terrestrial Syndrome
10 Survivor
11 Game Of Appearances
12 White Canvas





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Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Stephen Moss and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Nightrage – Wolf To Man

Nightrage - Wolf To Man Cover

Nightrage – Wolf To Man
Despotz Records
Release Date 29/03/2019
Running Time: 43:55
Review by Lotty Whittingham

It’s no secret that the mighty wolf is often associated with the metal community. Bands like Powerwolf, Sonata Arctica and Wolf have turned this to their advantage, whether it’s writing songs about the wolf or naming their band after it. Nightrage have also done this successfully with their latest album “Wolf To Man”. It takes you on a brutal, fist banging and melodic journey about the demise of mankind.

The album goes straight in for the kill with opening track ‘Starless Night’. This gives you a great first glimpse of their high-quality sound, it’s one that balances sheer brutality and melodic tunes perfectly. Another thing that you notice is the brilliant guitar work, particularly in the solos and chorus. These melodic and brutal arrangements work flawlessly together to create some fantastic tunes.

Across the album, you can hear this remarkable balance between the two perfectly. One minute you could be rapidly headbanging along to the beats, the next minute you are practicing air guitar along to the tuneful solos. No track is the same either, each one showcases a different story. The track can either make you want to start a revolution or go on a murderous rampage. It’s hard to pick the best tracks off the album so here are a few of the songs that demonstrate the impeccable talent of Nightrage.

‘Embrace The Nightrage’ could easily cause a rampaging riot with its fast pace and ruthlessness in the verses. The victorious sounding chorus can encourage you to carry on or it can mark the end of a successful rampage. Especially when the band screams “embrace the nightrage”, there’s a great sense of empowerment and strength behind this phrase.

The transition from sweeping melodic arrangements to thrash metal arrangements in the song ‘By Darkness Drawn’ are flawless. This fist pumping, headbanging tune will make you want to start your own mosh pit wherever you happen to be. This is a dominant track and definitely one of many highlights on the album.

The chilled introduction to ‘Disconnecting The Dots’ gives a different vibe to the rest of the album. The title alone is open to interpretation and the introduction to this song is a great way to illustrate this phrase. The acoustic guitars in the bridge also portray a more relaxed vibe that can represent the title. The rest of the song continues to showcase the band’s brilliant balance between melodic beauty and sheer brutality.

It ends on a strong note with the tracks ‘Escape Route Insertion’ and instrumental ‘Lytrosis. Escape Route Insertion’ provides one more brutal blast screaming at us to escape reality, something that we can all relate to.

The instrumental Lytrosis provides a calming atmosphere with the stripped-down tones and mellow guitar riffs. It’s a wonderful way to help the listener relax after experiencing a sheer force of brutal metal.

“Wolf To Man” is a melodic death metal treasure for old and new listeners alike. Nightrage are not ones to mess with and the mighty strength from them is concrete evidence of this.

Warning: Not for the fainthearted or easily offended.
01. Starless Night
02. Wolf to Man
03. Embrace The Nightrage
04. Desensitized
05. God Forbid
06. By Darkness Drawn
07. The Damned
08. Arm Aim Kill
09. Gemini
10. Disconnecting the Dots
11. Lytrosis






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Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Lotty Whittingham and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Obey – Swallow The Sun

Swallow The Sun Cover

Obey – Swallow The Sun
Release date: 05/04/2019
Running Time: 37:00
Review by Alun Jones

OBEY! CONSUME! CONFORM! Have you seen John Carpenter’s masterpiece of paranoid sci-fi, “They Live”? It’s outstanding. Rowdy Roddy Piper puts on some special sunglasses and is able to see the aliens living amongst us, brainwashing and controlling society. With the constant subliminal media messages exposed, Rod and his mates attempt to destroy the conspiracy and free the human race from subjugation.

I don’t know if Obey – the band – have ever seen this awesome movie, but these guys have definitely (to paraphrase Roddy) come here to chew bubblegum and kick ass… And they’re all out of bubblegum.

“Swallow The Sun” is the fourth album from Obey and it doesn’t disappoint. The listener gets more thunderous, rhythmic riffing that bridges across Hard Rock and Metal, courtesy of Steve Pickin (guitar/vocals), Dan Ryder (guitar/bass) and Ryan Gillespie (Drums). Add in a progressive, exploratory approach that’s open to wide influences, and what we have here is an album full of ideas that constantly reveals new depths with repeated listens.

Take bombastic opening track ‘Back Home’: it starts out in familiar crunching guitar riff territory, but unleashes a huge chorus that’s catchier than Velcro underpants. I wasn’t convinced on first listen, but this melody works so hard that despite being a surprise it’s a winner.

‘Drive’ offers more of the brutal riffing that Obey are known for, but with lush, melodic moments – not to mention a total classic rock lead.

Midway through the album is ‘Esmeralda and the Dam Blues’, a track that begins with a mellower, supernatural sound – giving way to a massive, chunky chorus. These songs are extremely well constructed, taking the listener on a stellar journey that’s refreshing and far from obvious cliché.

Some of Obey’s influences appear to froth to the surface with the album’s title track, which has a feel of Mastodon about it. Mix in some vintage Prong rifferama and the melodic tendencies of Alice in Chains and you’re a tiny step closer to understanding which star system the planet Obey revolves in.

Obey’s ability to meld face smashing heavy with unexpectedly tuneful moments gives this album it’s unique identity. “Swallow The Sun” is the kind of album that you can rock out to (can’t wait to see these guys live again), or take your time and listen on headphones to savour the detail.

If anything, I’d like to see further experimentation from Obey as the band grows. ‘Star Crusher’ is an obscenely huge yet groovy COC style track, but sadly lasts less than a minute. More experimentation with different interludes and variations of pace and intensity can only add more colour to their cosmic palate.

There’s very little to grumble about with “Swallow The Sun” though. What we have is an intricately created collection of songs with maximum power and thoughtful embellishments. Obey are a British band with real talent and ambition – check them out and lend them your support.

And beware of those ugly, skull faced aliens. They want to keep you in line and be part of the system. Get yourself some sunglasses and see what’s going on. Open your eyes and fight!

01. Back Home
02. Drive
03. Call Of The Judderman
04. Star Crusher
05. Esmeralda and the Dam Blues
06. Swallow The Sun
07. The Mountain
08. Vultures
09. Emerald Eyes



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Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Alun Jones and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Aonia – The Seven

The Seven Cover

Aonia – The Seven
Release Date: 06/10/2018
Running Time: 01:03:19
Review by Lotty Whittingham

Think Nightwish meets Epica and throw Coronatus into the mix and you get a strong seven headed, fourteen-legged creature that comes under the name of Aonia. 2018 proved to be a great year for them. They won Bloodstock Metal 2 The Masses in Sheffield and secured a spot on the New Blood Stage. They also released their debut album “The Seven”. To say this album will open doors for the band is a huge understatement.
“The Seven” is a remarkable album that takes the listener on a great journey of strong melodies and poetic lyrics. The band consists of two powerful soprano vocalists, brilliant guitar work, mesmerising synth work and pounding rhythms from the bass and drums. These all work together spectacularly to create these remarkable melodies. There are a number of songs that demonstrate this power the band have.

‘Sold My Soul’ is the opening song of the album and it’s one fans of the heavier side of music can relate to. The melody and lyrics are enticing. The line “rock and roll, come take my hand – lead me to the promised land” is empowering and from listening to the rest of the song, it will make you proud. If you are wanting to give metal a listen, this song will make you want to become a metalhead.

‘Wake Up Lucretia’ is a powerful song that tugs at the heart strings, particularly if you know the history behind Lucretia. For those who don’t know, Lucretia is a legendary heroine of ancient Rome. Her tragic fate played a vital part in shaping the Roman Kingdom into the Roman Republic. The lyrics and music fuse together flawlessly to create the heart-breaking emotion behind this account. Definitely one of the best songs on the album, especially if it helps you learn about an important historic figure.

The vocal work at the beginning of ‘Heartsword!’ alone is enough to entice the listener in. Guest vocalist Iliana Basileios Tsakiraki (Enemy Of Reality) provides her impeccable talent on the track. It has many different parts that work together flawlessly to create a symphonic metal masterpiece. In this track, all three sets of vocals harmonise alongside each other perfectly. The song also contains poetic lyrics describing a heroine’s tale who yields the heartsword and goes on to win many battles.

Like metal ballads? Well Aonia have produced a beautiful one. It’s titled ‘If You Dare’ and from the lyrical content it can be interpreted that the song is about staying strong through tough times and not giving up. Lines like “live while you’re alive” and “never give into the fight” are powerful ones that provide hope when times are tough.

“The Seven” ends on a bombastic note with the song ‘Hyde And Seek’. The story of Jekyll & Hyde is the well-known tale of two very different personalities. This story has left an important legacy and has been adapted many times in film and theatre. Aonia’s take could be an opera of this iconic tale. The song gets the mixed emotions Jekyll/Hyde must be feeling inside across perfectly.

This is demonstrated through a number of factors. The lyrical content written from both Jekyll and Hyde’s points of views; The vocal work projecting these lyrics; The musical arrangements portraying the different parts of the story; the piano and acoustics demonstrating the calm behaviour of Dr Jekyll after the destruction caused by Mr Hyde; The heavier arrangements representing the chaos and destruction that is being caused and perhaps the transformation between the two. That’s what is great about this song, it’s open for interpretation and others may have a different opinion on what the song represents.

“The Seven” is an outstanding debut from Aonia. It’s a Symphonic Metal masterpiece that will be hailed by fans of the band, genre and new listeners. It’s also one of those albums where the songs can be interpreted differently by different listeners. Want to know where the future of Symphonic Metal is going? Give “The Seven” a listen and be reassured the future of this genre is strong.

01. Sold My Soul
02. Violet Hours
03. Wake Up, Lucretia
04. Still, I Rise
05. Sirens’ Lament
06. Eye Of The Storm
07. Heartsword!
08. At The Masquerade
09. If You Dare
10. Hyde And Seek





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Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Lotty Whittingham and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Devin Townsend – Empath

Empath Cover Top

Devin Townsend – Empath
Hevy Devy Music / Inside Out Music
Release Date: 29/03/2019
Running Time: 74:08
Review by Beth Jones

Now, those of you who know me, will already know that I think Devin Townsend is some kind of astral being from a higher plane, so it will be little surprise to you to find out that I was like a child waiting for Christmas when it was announced that he was to release a new album, and I was intrigued by his documentary series that tantalised us with the promise of an album that he was both amazed and concerned by, as it was completely different from anything he had done before. I have to admit that I was a little nervous, in case I hated it, and it made him, this glorious example of a human, slip off the rather high pedestal I had positioned him on in my mind. I had purchased the album on pre-order and waited patiently for its arrival on 29th March, only to be dismayed for a whole week, when, alas every day the postman came, but with no vinyl shaped package (sad face).

However why let a little thing like an appalling postal service stand in the way of musical genius?! Rick pulled it up on Spotify on the evening of 29th March, and we had a listening party for two in our front room.

Looking at the list of collaborating musicians on this album tells you that it is going to be special. It reads like a who’s who of top current musical geniuses: Nathan Navarro, Morgan Ågren, Samus Paulicelli, Anup Sastry, Elliot Desgagnés, Ché Aimee Dorval, Anneke van Giersbergen, Chad Kroeger, Ryan Dahle, Steve Vai, The Elektra Women’s Choir, Mike Keneally and Adam “Nolly” Getgood. They all saw something special in what Devin was attempting! This was going to be exciting!!

As I lost myself in the world of ‘Empath’, two things quickly became clear; Firstly, I needn’t have worried about whether I would like this album – it is Devin duh! He’s not going to put out rubbish, because he is a god! And secondly, clearly, he is having some sort of mental crisis, and I am worried about him! That said, what he is producing in the throws of this crisis is quite simply mind-blowingly good! The Plovdiv live album he released last year was immense, and I didn’t think it could be topped in the sense of the emotionally electric pleasure it gave me, however ‘Empath’ has equalled and surpassed that. Whilst it is infinitely different from the Plovdiv release, and infinitely wilder in its soundscapes than Devin has attempted before, it is at its heart, still Devin and it is genius.

Starting with the calm, tranquillity of ‘Castaway’, the album takes us on a journey through creation, on a universal scale, with an entire toolbox of style, sounds and rhythms, making the whole thing every genre and no genre all at the same time. I am struggling to describe it’s brilliance without sounding like an utter pompous prat, but the best analogy I have come up with so far is this; When Mozart was composing, he had outlandish ideas, like attempting to write opera in languages never used in opera before, and writing a Requiem mass for his own death that was so ambitious, the people of the time thought he was completely insane. But now he is, without question, one of, if not THE greatest composer to have ever lived, and his operas, and the Requiem, are perfect examples of the most beautiful and revered pieces of classical music ever written. To me, Devin is that same crazy genius that Mozart was, and the music he is producing now is before its time, making it marmite for many, but he knows what he is doing. He sees the bigger picture, and this album shows that perfectly. You might hate it now, you might hate it for a good few years, but I guarantee that there will come a point where you listen back to it in the future and think, ‘Oh my god, why didn’t I pay more attention to this years ago?!’

Personally, I think the album is perfect, in every way, from the insane speed and precision of the drumming in ‘Hear Me’, to the beauty and pois of opera in ‘Why?’, and the sheer scale of the sound in ‘Genesis’. The vocal talents he possesses also never cease to amaze me, from his heavy to his serene classical operatic, his vocals are crystal clear, and beautifully powerful throughout, and combined with the unmistakable sound of his pal Anneke Van Giersbergen’s amazing vocals, along with other equally brilliant vocalists and choristers, it is just glorious. Devin has taken a whole bunch of musical ideas and combined them with some of the best musicians in the business, then interspersed them with sound effects, and possibly a touch of magic, and painstakingly layered together a complete work which takes you on a journey on so many levels of conscious thought that it will blow your socks off.

Or you might hate it, but if you do, whilst I respect other people’s opinions, in this instance I’m sorry but you are wrong! This is everything I could ever want in one album. THIS is the future my friends. Empath!

01. Castaway
02. Genesis
03. Spirits Will Collide
04. Evermore
05. Sprite
06. Hear Me
07. Why?
08. Borderlands
09. Requiem
10. Singularity
I. Adrift
II. I Am I
III. There Be Monsters
IV. Curious Gods
V. Silicon Scientists
VI. Here Comes the Sun!




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Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Beth Jones and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

The Quireboys – Amazing Disgrace

Amazing Disgrace Cover

The Quireboys – Amazing Disgrace
Off Yer Rocka Recordings
Release Date: 05/04/2019
Running Time: 46:25
Review by Paul Monkhouse
Rating: 10/10

The Quireboys aren’t strangers to the knocks and scrapes of rock ‘n’ roll but it’s been an unbelievably long, hard road to get this album out due to the ongoing issues with Pledge Music, initially the chosen platform for this release. Thankfully you can’t keep a good band down and due to the immense hard work by the band, their team and the fans this has now come out and stands as a testament to their street fighting spirit. Driven by a passion to stretch themselves, “Amazing Disgrace” shows a band that’s both fearless and incredibly fresh, highlighting their undoubted flair for writing great and timeless songs.

From the opening notes of ‘Original Black-Eyed Son’, this is something really special. The song wastes no time in getting into a great riff and it just keeps on growing with some superb keys, Stax-like brass and female backing vocals adding to a fantastic, dirty rock ‘n’ roll barroom number that has both grit and polish. Really setting their stall out, you know that just two minutes into this that it’s an album The Quireboys can be proud of. Whilst the band can really rock out when they want to, as anyone who’s seen their electrifying live shows can attest, this release broadens their palette and adds some real colour but doesn’t sacrifice any of their fire. Next track ‘Sinner’s Serenade’ perfectly highlights this with it’s powerful, big start and yet more layers of sound as it really drives along, propelled by some teeth rattling drums and some superb slide guitar at the end.

Already a firm live favourite, ‘Seven Deadly Sins’ has a funky strut and the peerless guitar work of Guy Griffin and Paul Guerin as they show off the sonic swagger that has a real stake in proving their confidence whilst not being too flash. This is also echoed in the titular ‘Amazing Disgrace’ that boasts a real late 60’s / early 70’s vibe as Spikes distinctive vocals dances throughout and the track ends by morphing into Southern Hard Rock. Yet another bold change of pace comes with ‘Eve of the Summertime’, a beautifully crafted ballad, that is ice cream sweet and sparkles with sunshine whilst retaining an edge. Very evocative of that season, you could hear it any time of the year and immediately be transported to those hazy, lazy days where life just consisted of sitting on a beach, drinking beer with your friends.

‘California Blues’ picks up the pace again and is a perfect reminder of why the band was chosen to support Guns ‘n’ Roses and the Stones. This would be the perfect soundtrack to cruising along Sunset Strip and you can clearly picture the band whipping up the crowds at the Whisky in downtown L.A. ‘This Is It’ brings an almost country feel and expands on the great storytelling that Spike and Co excel at. Boasting some more very fine keys from Keith Weir, this also benefits from some excellent fiddle playing and if you wince at the mere mention of that instrument then this track will surely convert you. ‘Feels Like A Long time’ brings back a Rolling Stones feel and is tailor made for playing at massive stadiums to a sea of people, waving arms held aloft in appreciation of its grandeur.

Yet more swagger and stomp form the brilliant ‘Slave Number One’, its chugging riff building into a juggernaut that shows that you don’t need to be full-on to be heavy. ‘Dancing in Paris’ is another great ballad, its fragile and tender vocals matched perfectly to the tasteful and tasty guitar work. The album closes with a bang as ‘Medusa My Girl’ boils out of the speakers. Incredibly powerful, this is a maelstrom of instruments that warn of a coming storm that continues to get darker as Spikes howls through the wind and rain. With a real Celtic feel, the Quireboys have chosen the perfect track to end the album and yet again show why they are one of the greatest rock ‘n’ roll bands this country has ever produced. The Quireboys may, at times, have been heavier than this release but they have never been better. As they say themselves: “This is Rock ‘n’ Roll”. One of the most vital albums of the year, you need ‘Amazing Disgrace’ in your collection.

01. Original Black Eyes Son
02. Sinners Serenade
03. Saven Deadly Sins
04. Amazing Disgrace
05. Eve Of The Summertime
06. California Blues
07. This Is It
08 Feels Like A Long Time
09. Slave #1
10. Dancing In Paris
11. Medusa My Girl






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Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Paul Monkhouse and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Mad Spanner – Life Absurd

Life Absurd Cover

Mad Spanner – Life Absurd
Release Date: 29/03/2019
Running Time: 29:40
Review By Beth Jones

And now for something completely different!!! The crazy world of Mad Spanner has finally come to a studio recording, with the release of their debut album “Life Absurd”. It could not be more aptly titled! As I have said before, these guys are the embodiment of Monty Python, in metal. Their crazy, off the wall, observational comedy makes for a cracking live show, so I was really looking forward to hearing this album, which features some of my personal favourite songs, such as ‘Forced To Use A Shitty Drum Machine’, and ‘Get Off Your Bastard Phone (You Anti-social Dickhead)’!

The album is just as madcap and frenetic as their stage show, and makes you feel what I imagine clothes must feel in a tumble dryer! The band’s bio has it spot on: ‘Frantic, bizarre and utterly wild. Always seeking to put the absurd onstage, dedicated to delivering an intense tornado of a show with energy and passion unparalleled!’

Kicking off with ‘Wrongshade’, the album takes us at a pace through 30ish minutes of craziness, with proggy rhythm changes, grungey sludgey guitar sounds and the occasional chicken noise, all peppered over with a heavy dose of punk distortion, shouty vocals, and comedic spoken word. It is kind of like a really intense cheese dream!

Musically, what they do is not overly complicated or intricate, it is just good, solid, loud punk, but their rhythm changes, and cross timings add an extra dimension. They like a good bit of flange too – as in the effect!!!!…Honestly, filthy minded you lot are, all of you!

The thing that makes Mad Spanner different is their utter mad spannerness! Michael Randall’s crazy lyrics and expressive voice do make you feel like you are in some sort of drug influenced spell at an asylum, but in a rather pleasurable way! Dan Ashley’s guitar work is frenetic, and I was particularly impressed with his little solo in ‘Drinking The Drunk Away’. Ben Codd finishes the trio on drums, and he is probably the most stable member of the merry gang, in terms of keeping the crazy on track rhythmically (obviously I’m not qualified to discuss his mental state, I’m not medically trained)!

My personal favourite tracks from this album are ‘Drinking The Drunk Away’ and ‘Avocado Commando’, although it is very difficult to pick out a favourite track, as they are all so bonkers! I would also like to give a special mention to the spoken word track ‘Seagulls Haunt Me in My Sleep’, which is a small stroke of poetic mastery, that would not be out of place being performed at a very arty spoken word event, by someone in a Beret, a grandad shirt and silk neck tie!

All in all this is a great way to start their recorded catalogue, and a must for anyone who likes their music on the absurd side! Jolly well done chaps! Keep it up!

2.Forced To Use A Shitty Drum Machine
3.Alektorophobic Nosebleed
4.Massacre Of The Flies (ft Kieran Scott – ‘Ashen Crown’)
5.I Was Caught Shitting In A Plastic Bag
6.Get Off Your Bastard Phone (You Anti-Social Dickhead)
7.Anal Sex
8.Drinking The Drunk Away
9.Duck-Faced Selfie
10.Avocado Piano
11.Avocado Commando
12.Seagulls Haunt Me In My Sleep
13.Thinking Nothing. Feeling Nothing.
14.Escape Into Reality



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Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Beth Jones and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Rock Goddess – This Time

This Time Cover

Rock Goddess – This Time
Bite You To Death Records
Release Date 01/03/2019
Running Time: 37:07
Review by ‘Dark Juan’

Oh, god. It hurts to write this. It hurts so much. I never thought I would hear myself say this. Rock Goddess have released a poor record. I’m not even going to fly off into my usual realms of fantasy. It hurts because I love Rock Goddess and have done for thirty years and I have been hopelessly in love with Jody and Julie Turner for all that time. They were a formative influence on this hellpriest when I was a mere neophyte and for that I have them to thank for my love of the heavy metal ladies who show the men what true ballsiness is like…

I am genuinely sad. Rock Goddess appear to have not evolved beyond 1984 in sound. Jody’s vocal is forced, and the music would not be out of place in the classic rock room of the much lamented and missed Jilly’s Rockworld in Manchester, may it rest in peace. The music is ultra-Trad Metal, all big harmonies, mid-tempo and lyrics of sometimes absolute banality – the best tune on the record is ‘Calling To Space’ and there is an abundance of nonsense lyrically on it. And the chorus on ‘This Time’… “This time, this place, nothing has changed…” is disturbingly accurate as a description of the music on offer here. Oh, I hate myself so much right now. Being critical of Rock Goddess is like kicking hundreds of kittens and puppies with hobnailed boots, such is my regard for them and their undeniable legacy of brilliance. Here’s another example of the lyrical content on display, “In your car, we go far, we can be you and me. Just us, in lust…” This is from ‘Drive Me Away’, the album closer, a sodding rock ballad that perpetuates the very worst of the horror that metal is sometimes guilty of… I suppose it doesn’t help that I fucking CAN’T STAND BALLADS! It is all turgid and banal lyrics, terrible wailing guitar solo and sheer awfulness from start to finish, complete with fade out with Jody howling, “Drive me away-ay” ad infinitum…

The disappointment doesn’t end there. Last track on the record is a radio friendly edit of the opening song ‘Are You Ready’. So, you get to “enjoy” the opening record with some lyrics blocked out. Arsebiscuits. The song was about as offensive as gardening anyway. Blocking out the word shit and putting on the opening song as the closer is more than a little disingenuous. I don’t like the production on the record either, come to that. It is far too bass heavy and this is a shame because Jody has some serious chops and can peel off a withering, incendiary guitar solo. The guitar sound itself is excellent, sharp, biting and pointy and I will never say a bad thing about the drumming skills of Julie Turner. But this record is a scandalous waste of the talents of these ladies. The best thing I can say about it is that some of the songs will be absolutely magnificent chant-a-longs in the live setting, but as a recorded work it is so disappointing I want to cry bitter tears of regret and sorrow, because a band I revere has disappeared up its own arse. Please, PLEASE, ladies, set me right on your next record because this is just too painful for words. I’m going for a lie down.

I’d love to say don’t waste your money on this, but I just can’t bring myself to do it because I love Rock Goddess so much. Ok, Dark Juan, diplomacy. You’re good at that – ha ha ha ha ha no I’m not, I’m a complete and total bastard, but this bastard wants Rock Goddess to survive so we can all get an absolute banger of a record next time. Buy at your peril, unless you are a fan of metal in the Eighties and you haven’t got beyond that. If that’s the case, you’ll probably love it.

I don’t. And that hurts.

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System is sorely disappointed, crying into its beer and wondering whether it is possible to exterminate every single other band on the planet so we only have Rock Goddess left. Apparently it is unfeasible so they are awarded a decidedly not groovy 4/10. I hate myself so bad.

01. Are You Ready? (No. Not anymore. Do you realise how much devilment and subverting of the Catholic Church I’ll have to do to make myself feel better?)
02. Obsession (With the Eighties, yeah)
03. Two Wrongs Don’t Make A Right (Depends on the wrongs you are doing in my view…)
04. Calling To Space (Banging tune, shite lyrics.)
05. Flying To See You (I’ll be happy to see you as long as you leave your sodding guitar at home…)
05. Why Do We Never Learn (Argh, a pertinent question indeed, considering this album.)
06. This Time (I’m running away and listening to David Lee Roth’s “Skyscraper” rather than this record.)
07. It’s My Turn (To put down the instruments and regroup. Yes, yes it is!)
08. Drive Me Away (ay, ay, ay, ay, ay)
09. Are You Ready? Radio Edit (Otherwise known as an utterly pointless exercise and an excuse to bulk out the record with exactly the same tune as the opener with one episode of the word shit dubbed out. Cynical in the extreme.)

Jody Turner – Lead Guitar & Lead Vocals
Julie Turner – Drums & Backing vocals
Jenny Lane – Bass Guitar & Backing vocals




Promo Pic1


Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dark Juan and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Quantum Pig – Songs Of Industry And Sunshine


Quantum Pig – Songs Of Industry And Sunshine
White Star Records
Release Date: 01/02/2019
Running Time: 40:36
Review by ‘Dark Juan’

Well, this is not what I was expecting at all. I am confounded, astonished and surprised all at once. I was expecting some kind of insane industrial blaster. Instead, I have got a Prog Rock band who simultaneously claim they are not a Prog band. This immediately gets the antennae quivering.

Hello, I am Dark Juan and I have stopped the DIY hell I am suffering in my kitchen in order to give you the (drunken) benefit of my wisdom on “Songs Of Industry And Sunshine” by Quantum Pig, which is a fucking great name for a band. Don’t argue. You’re wrong because you don’t know what a quantum state is. I SAID DON’T ARGUE! YOU! YOU THERE, WAVING YOUR HANDS ABOUT AND EXSPOSTULATING! PACK IT IN! NO-ONE IS IMPRESSED AND THIS IS MY REVIEW, SO YOU CAN JUST SOD OFF, OK? Don’t make me unleash the Evil Ones… the Evil Ones being my excuses for dogs. There is Sir Zeusington Zeus KCMG, VC, MM, MC, DFC and Bar who WILL raid your food regardless of what security provisions you have in place, Sir Igor Egbert Cleavage-Hoover who will just shout at you until you submit to his will (don’t ever eat a sandwich in his presence if you are female. You will see why he is called what he is…), and finally Hodgson Fartpants (named for the author Willaim Hope-Hodgson, a criminally ignored and extremely innovative author who arguably wrote the first sf novel entitled The Night Land and once lived in Borth near Aberystwyth, as did I. Wales became too hot for me after I defiled a priest’s daughter on the altar in St. Michael’s in Aberystwyth. At Communion…) Hodgson has just recently returned from a dodgy regime somewhere in the world where he was seconded to their armed forces for his skills at anal chemical warfare… Ooops, sorry. Three hundred words in and I haven’t said a fucking word about the music. I know I’m new here, but you are going to have to get used to this. It will happen A LOT.

Quantum Pig, then. An extraordinary duo based in London, in good old Blighty. A pair of very irritatingly talented men whose music is currently entertaining me mightily. Imagine Pink Floyd seducing Soundgarden to a soundtrack of Rush. Now try to rid yourself of that mental image. Good luck and I’ll see you on the other side of the subsequent counselling you will have to endure. Anyway, this is what Quantum Pig sound like and I have to say although it’s only April, this album is a contender for record of the year. I fucking love it! Remember Sugar? Bob Mould of Husker Du’s other band? This is Sugar on prog steroids, baby! I love the melody of it. I love the fact that I can hear profound lyrics instead of, “WOOOOAARRRRRRGGGGHHHHH! Hurgh hurgh grrrrr waoooOOOOOO!” I like Ian Faragher’s voice and I like Mark Stevenson’s bass playing. I like the production on the record. It is crystal clear and sharp and entirely in keeping with the sound of the record. I like the guitar work and sound and how it doesn’t overpower the rest of the instruments. I like the bass sound’s clarity. I like the vocal harmonies the gentlemen employ. This is a fine record. It may not appeal to the metal purist, though. It could be considered somewhat lightweight for the person who has only ever listened to Chimaera, or who thinks metal starts and stops with Slipknot. This should not dissuade you from expending serious currency on Quantum Pig. Expand thy mind, metal pilgrim. Expand thy mind. There is more to metal than brutality. Sometimes it is composed of the most incredible magnificence and beauty. Sometimes it’s a fanged murder machine. Sometimes it pays to listen to something other than out and out metal. “Songs Of Industry And Sunshine” will reward repeated listens. I don’t want to quote lyrics, because I will ruin the wonderfulness of them, but the words are sublime. You can trust me on this.

The opening track ‘Statement Of Intent’ is just that, a song that sets the tone of the record in a rather remarkable fashion, all biting guitars and thought-provoking lyrics and things improve with the second track. In fact, it’s an upwardly trending curve of wonderfulness until we get to album closer ‘Dirty Old Engine’. Then Quantum Pig falter. You should know that I am not a fan of ballads. In fact, I fucking hate them with a venom akin to a genocidal maniac. They ruin albums. They are turgid, awful, personality-masturbating things that have no place in metal. I have a test for ballads – if it is not as good as Skid Row’s 18 And Life (being the only tolerable ballad I have ever heard) then it’s shite, mate. While ‘Dirty Old Engine’ is not quite a ballad, it does cost Quantum Pig a mark or two because their record ends on a damp squib, and not on the coruscating orgasm of magnificence it should have done. Bad Quantum Pig. Very bad Quantum Pig indeed.

However, drunken ranting aside, this is that rare thing. A prog metal album that is easy to listen to, challenging in parts, thought-provoking in lyrical content and rocks like an absolute motherfucker. Good Quantum Pig. We like it when you do that.

This record will be remaining on The Dark Juan Playlist Of Doom, Horror, Sexual Perversions And Obscure 70s TV Theme Tunes for quite some time. I suggest, no actually, I REQUEST AND REQUIRE YOU ALL BUY THIS RECORD AND CEASE YOUR POINTLESS PROTESTATIONS!

Thank you very much. I’ll be here until I’m fired.

The Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System awards Quantum Pig a genocidally bloodsoaked 9/10. Good job Mrs. Dark Juan is in Blighty, really. I’d have some explaining to do about why the village is so quiet…

01. Tracklist
02. Statement Of Intent
03.Citizen And State
04. Long Letter Home
05. The Shadows We Miss
06. Things
07. Keep The Nation Warm
08. Dirty Old Engine

Ian Faragher – Vocals, guitars, keys
Mark Stevenson – Vocals, bass, keys




Quantum Pig press photos


Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dark Juan and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Trendkill – Black Moon EP

Black Moon EP Review

Trendkill – Black Moon EP
Nil By Mouth Records
Release Date: 14/08/2018
Running Time: 23:04
Review by Mark Pritchard

I was recently asked if I would be interested in reviewing the EP “Black Moon” on behalf of the English based Groove/Thrash Metal band Trendkill, Admittedly I haven’t heard of them for long and this is the first chance I have had to listen to “Black Moon” but I couldn’t be happier to have been given the chance to review this awesome release and I really like listening to the combination of these five tracks. They cite their influences as Pantera, Megadeth and Rammstein, amongst others, and you can hear it in the songs that Trendkill have made. I do like me some Megadeth and Rammstein so it gives me the same feeling as when I listen to those bands, but these guys have their own take on the formula and from start to finish “Black Moon” is a really good EP to listen to whether it’s the instruments or the vocals!

Even though “Black Moon” contains only five songs they are really top notch and each brings its own intensity, not just from the lyrics but also how well the band play which creates even more enjoyment! It pains me that I haven’t heard of them for longer than I have but this gives me a way of jumping right in at the deep end with reviewing this awesome piece of work. Listening to this is so good that at moments during this review I’ve just sat back in my chair, hands on my head, looking up but with my eyes closed and taken a deep breath and it just gets better and better which in my book makes it much more than just five songs! Since I listened to the EP for the first time, I’ve not been able to stop and it took me until a few minutes ago to realise there is a repeat button so I don’t have to keep re-starting it myself!

From the guitar riffs and the bass to the drumming and vocals Trendkill have found such an amazing blend in the music they make and I can feel the passion with each strum of a guitar, each hit of the drum and each scream of the awesome vocals. These guys put everything they have into their songs and I officially love the EP. All the tracks stand out but put them together and it blows the senses. I am one lucky guy to have the chance to review this awesomeness.

Now comes the tough part and that is rating the EP and even though I love “Black Moon” it gets an 8/10. This is purely because I wish there was more of it. This is no reflection on the band. As for a favourite song there isn’t one that stands because I have enjoyed listening to the EP as a whole, rather than singular songs!

I want to say a huge thank you to Jonny Stern on Guitar, Isaac Edwards on Bass, Elliot Bartram on Vocals and last but not least Corey Bennett on drums who approached me about the possibility of reviewing. I cannot thank you guys enough and I leave a tracklist and band links below!

01. Renegade
02. Black Moon
03. Asylum
04. Playing God
05. The Host


Promo Pic1


Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Mark Pritchard and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.