Reviews

Krull – The Black Coast

Krull The Black Coast Cover

Krull – The Black Coast
Iron Shield Records
Release date: 27/04/2018
Running Time: 42.32
Review by: Alun Jones
6/10

KRULL! Did you ever see the movie? It’s GREAT! On the ancient world of Krull, Prince Colwyn brings together a band of scoundrels to help him rescue Princess Lyssa from the clutches of the evil Beast, who threatens to conquer the planet. It’s a sci-fi fantasy adventure with a Cyclops, cool weapons, vile baddies, Tucker Jenkins and Lysette Anthony. I mean seriously, you need to see this film. How metal does it sound? Even the bad guys are called “Slayers”!

The band Krull occupy a musical space which is openly very inspired by fantasy, battles and all things sword and sorcery. And right from the off, it’s a whole lot of fun. The atmospheric intro “In the Woods” grabs the listener and plunges them into the ethereal world that Krull have concocted, and it’s pretty much full on from there.

Pace-wise, “The Black Coast” is like riding shotgun in a barbarian’s chariot, charging an army of Orcs. Stand out tracks for me included “By Steel” and “The King and the Sword”, but the whole album is energetic traditional metal. If you’re a fan of Priest, Maiden and the mighty Manowar you’ll find something to enjoy here. Only midway track “Valhalla” slows things down a little, otherwise it’s a fast and brutal campaign.

So why only 6 out of 10? Well there are lots of plus points with this album. The vocals are suitably bonkers, ranging from powerful cries, deep growls to a high pitched, witchy cacophony. The musicianship is great, and the rhythm section successfully keep the march relentless. The songs are fast and filled with          fantastic tales of battles and bravery.

But the guitar tone was just off for me. I like something with more crunch; more skull smashing intensity. After the cool intro, first track “The Witch”, whilst a great song, suffers from a languid guitar sound that slices the records               hamstrings before the fight is really on.

Don’t misunderstand me, the playing is great – it’s the production that’s slightly lacking. The guitars should be much more axe in the face, blood and brains       everywhere.

There’s still a lot to recommend Krull’s “The Black Coast” though. Especially if you dig your metal as a soundtrack to a rampaging berserker, attacking a horde of evil ghouls.

Oh, and get down to your local Blockbuster and rent the Krull video. You won’t regret it. It makes Lord of the Rings look like a bad Dungeons and Dragons game in a crack den…!

TRACK LISTING
1. In the Woods – Intro
2. The Witch
3. By Steel
4. Marching to Mountains
5. Valhalla
6. The King and the Sword
7. Immortals
8. Stand fight to Kill
9. The Black Coast

SOCIAL MEDIA
https://www.facebook.com/krullheavymetal/
https://krullofficial.bandcamp.com/
https://www.instagram.com/krull.official/
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdgPwJVIKdkOcphCcdQSBBA

Krull Promo Pic1

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.

St Madness – Bloodlustcapades

Bloodlustcapades Cover

St Madness – Bloodlustcapades
Nasty Prick Records
Release Date: 15/03/2018
Running Time: 1.06:13
Review by Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King
8/10

Many years ago, in 2006, a then good friend of mine sent me an album to listen to, one that he thought I would enjoy. That album was “Vampires in The Church” by St Madness and, with my favourite tracks being ‘Vampires in the Church’, ‘Arizona’ and ‘Ever After’, I absolutely loved it.

Now, 12 years later, I have been given their new album “Bloodlustcapades” to review, and guess what? I absolutely love this one too.

Formed in Tempe, Arizona in 1993, they originally had the name Crown of Thorns, but in 1997, after discovering a Christian rock band from New Jersey had trademarked the name, they changed to St Madness, and have been so ever since.

Although not to everyone’s taste, the band has achieved some fine accolades during their career, including performing at the iconic Milwaukee Metalfest in 1998 and 1999, and receiving the Los Angeles Music Award for Metal Album of the Year for their 2013 album “Carnimetal”.

They have also performed on stage with a host of bands including Van Halen, Monster Magnet, Gwar, King Diamond, Mercyful Fate, Flotsam and Jetsam,        Sacred Reich, Lynch Mob, Fates Warning, Phil Lewis, Six Feet Under, Death,       Destruction, Iced Earth, Black Oak Arkansas, The Misfits and D.R.I! Impressive, huh?

“Bloodlustcapades” is the band’s 11th full length CD release.

One of the things I love about St Madness is that you cannot pigeon hole them into any particular genre or category (and if you have read any of my previous reviews you will know I absolutely HATE pigeon holing with a passion!!) They mix traditional heavy metal with thrash and groove elements and are even not scared to throw in the odd country, blues and southern rock influence either. Why should a band have to fit into one particular strain of metal when they can so easily cover a whole range as easily as St Madness do!?

This is an aggressive album, raw and uncomplicated, with heavy riffs galore throughout the album and drummer Sircyko plays out of his skin, but one that also shows they had a lot of fun doing.

St Madness are a theatrical band, combining face makeup with onstage dancers and actors to provide not only a treat for the ears but one for the eyes too. Even some of the music and lyrics lean more to the comical side of things but this is no way a bad thing. This is obviously a band who love what they do but want to have some fun while they are doing it.

The album features 13 fantastic that range from the heavy “King of the Goddamn World” to the instrumental that is “Rigel” to the more comical “Made in China.” There are also two awesome covers, one of Johnny Cash’s “Folsom   Prison Blues” and the other of Elvis Presley’s “Can’t Help Falling in Love with You” which is something that really shouldn’t work, yet it does so brilliantly.

If you have never heard anything by St Madness before, go out and buy this        album! It really is a fantastic piece of music! It should appeal to a whole host of metal fans, but we all know just how finicky some metal fans can be!!

This is a metal album but with a twist…and a turn!! And I think that sets them apart from other metal bands.

St Madness just seem to be getting better and better!

TRACK LIST
1. Day of the Dead
2. Folsom Prison Blues
3. Don’t Be Like the Blind
4. The Arrogance of Man
5. This is Your Reality
6. Made in China
7. Walk Your Own Path
8. Bloodlustcapades
9. Can’t Help Falling in Love with You
10. Warnings from the Past
11. King of the Damn World
12. Rigel
13. He’s Riding a Harley in Heaven

SOCIAL MEDIA
https://www.facebook.com/ST-MADNESS-58739248731/
https://stmadness.bandcamp.com/
https://myspace.com/stmadness

Nasty Prick Records Poster

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King 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.

Primal Fear – Apocalypse

 

Apocalypse Cover

Primal Fear – Apocalypse

Frontiers Music s.r.l

Release Date: 10/08/2018

Running Time: 50:10

Review by Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King
9/10

I always knew that I was going to enjoy this album as I have been a fan of Primal Fear for as long as I can remember, the question was HOW MUCH was I going to like it?

Billed as “for fans of Judas Priest, Accept, Helloween, Gamma Ray and Iced Earth” (I don’t know about anyone else but that would sell it straight away for me), Primal Fear were first formed in 1997 but two of Germany’s most respected metal musicians; Ralf Scheepers, former Gamma Ray vocalist and bassist/vocalist Mat Sinner.

Their first self-titled album was released in March 1997, and in the following 21 years they have released a further 11 albums, becoming one of the most beloved and respected heavy metal bands around the globe.

Their last two studio albums, “Delivering The Black” and “Rulebreaker” saw them climbing the charts and earning even more critical praise than before and with the release of their new album “Apocalypse”, they have once again raised the bar in heavy metal to even greater heights.

Produced by Mat Sinner and recorded, mixed and mastered by Jacob Hansen at Hansen Studios, “Apocalypse” brings together German power metal, elements of pure thrash metal and traditional heavy metal along with some 1970’s European hard rock.

Primal Fear had kind of fallen off my radar in the last few years. Reviewing newer bands, a lot of the time meant that a lot of the older ones had been temporarily resigned to the back seat, but I was glad this one dropped in my inbox.

So, the question that needs to be asked is, did this album live up to my recollection of them from albums gone by?

Simple answer is, YES AND THEN SOME!

The album opens with the atmospheric and apocalyptic title track, with its bell tolls and choral, almost chanting, vocals before it launches you headfirst into the rest of the album, which has a severe ‘in your face’ rock and roll attitude.

The album is classic Primal Fear, the galloping riffs, the frantic double pedals that add a sense of urgency and speed and Scheepers piercing high screams. Everything that got Primal Fear noticed in the first place.

This is hard, driving speed metal at its best, but has that Teutonic power/heavy metal sound that the Germans do best.

Stand out tracks for me include “Blood, Sweat and Fear”, “Hounds of Justice” (which I am aware that some reviewers did not like! But hey, we can’t all agree on everything can we?” and “The Beast”.

“Supernova” is the albums power ballad and shows the more theatrical side of Scheepers singing and “Eye of the Storm”, although not technically what I would class as a ballad, is a slower, more melodic offering, showing just what these guys are capable of.

“King of Madness”, the album’s first single, is probably the most radio friendly and is an absolutely stunning track. I would have bought the album purely based on this one track if I hadn’t received it for reviewing purposes. It’s a great advert for an awesome album.

We all know the story that Scheepers tried out for the Judas Priest job after Rob Halford left (the gig eventually going to Tim “Ripper” Owens!) but I, for one, am glad he didn’t get the job. Just think, if Ralf had joined Judas Priest, we might never have had the pleasure of a band like Primal Fear over the past 21 years!

The more I listen to this album the better it gets. I only wish I could have made it to the gig in London on 11th October, but maybe I’ll catch them next time, where I will definitely be down the front!

TRACK LISTING
Apocalypse
New Rise
The Ritual
King of Madness
Blood, Sweat and Fear
Supernova
Hail to the Fear
Hounds of Justice
The Beast
Eye of the Storm
Cannonball

SOCIAL MEDIA
http://www.primalfear.de/home/
https://en-gb.facebook.com/PrimalFearOfficial/
https://myspace.com/primalfearofficial
https://www.deezer.com/en/artist/4807?autoplay=true

https://tunein.com/artist/Primal-Fear-m152476/?autoplay=true

https://instagram.com/primalfearofficial

 

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Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King 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.

Alphastate – The Grind

 

The Grind Cover

Alphastate – The Grind

Sliptrick Records

Release Date: 03/04/2018

Running Time: 37:28

Review by Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King

7/10

Alphastate are a Greek metal band, formed in 2013 as a personal project of Pete Breaker (guitars). Vocalist Manos Xanthakis joined in in 2015 and the line up was complete in 2016 with the additions of Dimitris Tsounakis on bass and Fivos Andriopoulos on the drums. They released their first album “Out of the Black” in 2015 and received excellent and positive press globally.

Says the band: “we wanted to combine modern metal with 80’s and 90’s influences such as Metallica, Ozzy Osbourne, Pantera and Nevermore to create a very personal and extreme style with no boundaries.”

So, what genre of metal are Alphastate? To pigeonhole them into one category would be wrong and do them a severe injustice. They play heavy metal that is heavier than normal, but they have thrown in a bit of power too, with just a hint of doom (think Sabbath, Candlemass and Trouble), and this gives them an almost unique sound.

I always think the vocals make any band and am always on the lookout for bands that have distinctive and different singers. If I am totally honest, on the first run through of the album, I didn’t actually like Manos’s vocals but after listening a few times, I realised I really didn’t give him much credit. His vocals are deep, and unmistakably Greek, which is by no means a bad thing. He could quite easily fit into a band such as Firewind if they were ever on the lookout.

I must admit that I hadn’t listened to the band’s first album before listening to this one, but the promo notes that came with the album stated that they wanted to take a more modern and aggressive approach musically with this new album. They wanted “very loud and distinctive guitars, a more modern production that had the vocals pushed up front and drums that punched through the sound.”

I think they were successful on all three counts. Take the guitars out of this album and they would slot straight into a Pantera album, the drums are strong and tight, and I have already mentioned the vocals above.

This album includes a lot more of the band’s own thoughts and experiences making it the most personal release so far, and sonically it is their best. They have made an album that is “pure aggression with the best songs they have ever written.”

One thing that I wasn’t overly keen on with this album, was the lack of variation. Each song seemed to sound much like the last, and I am not sure if this is due to unfamiliarity with the tracks. Maybe with a few more listens through, the songs may start to separate a bit.

But this doesn’t take away from the fact, that this is a solid album, and for a band that has only really been together properly since 2016, it’s a good sign of things to come.
Give these guys a go……and they may just surprise you!

 

TRACK LIST
01. Trapped
02. Phantom Desires
03. Speak Your Mind
04. Theater Of Lies
05. The Grind
06. Forevermore
07. Behind The Dark
08. Heaven’s World
09. Man Made God

 

SOCIAL MEDIA
https://www.facebook.com/AlphastateMetal/
https://www.instagram.com/alphastate_official/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCngyPMt1FVY2fdGJ0pbmc4g
https://sliptrickrecords.com/alphastate/

 

Alphastate

 

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King 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.

 

Deadheads – This One Goes to 11

 

HRR_593_Cover.indd

DEADHEADS – THIS ONE GOES TO 11

High Roller Records

Release date 26/01/2018

Review by Vikkie ‘Queen of Rock’ Richmond

Running time: 38:00

6/10

I confess to having never heard of Swedish four-piece, Deadheads, although “This One Goes to 11” is their third album. Labelling themselves as ‘energetic rock and roll’, this band are all that and more; this album is eleven tracks of frenetically paced, good time rock which was fairly infectious to listen to.

The first track, ‘Black Out’ gallops along with brattish guitars and a thumping pace and although it was light on lyrics with a repetitive chorus, it certainly stuck in my brain for a while after listening.

I found a punkish element to next song, ‘Don’t Mind The Ghost’, which featured a simple hook and echoing vocals; in fact, pretty much all of the songs had a punk feel to them, with some nice keyboard/piano work showing on ‘Manic Mondays’.

The pace slowed a little with ‘Too Lost To Be Found’, which had a real vintage flavour to it and was one of my more favoured tracks on the album. I particularly liked the last track, ‘Status Low’; it wasn’t vastly different to the other songs, but I enjoyed the lyrics and the key changes made it feel a little less mad and ever so slightly more laid back.

I think if you take the time to listen to this album five or six times in a row, you will probably find nuances and changes from song to song; just listening to it twice through, it sounded kind of samey in places.

Quality and production-wise, the sound is a little muffled on some tracks – whether that was intentional, I’m not sure, but it was a bit irritating in places. Deadheads have been touring on and off in Europe, so perhaps they will be popping up on the UK festival circuit next year. I’d make a point of catching them live if I can; the songs are infectious and carry a certain amount of punk groove, so it would be interesting to see how that translates onto a live stage.

 
TRACK LISTING
● Black Out
● Don’t Mind The Ghost
● Somebody Along The Way
● Manic Mondays
● Too Lost To Be Found
● The Plan
● Instant Control
● 2 Steps Before The Fall
● Lucifer
● My Time
● Status Low

 

SOCIAL MEDIA
https://www.facebook.com/deadheadsband
http://www.deadheadsband.com/

 

Promo Pic1

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Vikkie ‘Queen of Rock’ Richmond 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.

Winter’s Edge – The Guardians of Our Time Pt 1

 

The Guardians Of Our Time Pt.1 Cover

WINTER’S EDGE – THE GUARDIANS OF OUR TIME PT. 1.

Self-Released

Release Date: 17/08/2018

Running Time: 35:43

Review by Lotty Whittingham

8/10

It was only last year that Winter’s Edge officially became a band. It was initially started as a solo project by guitarist Jeremy Lawler in the year 2009. It was set up to feature different musicians from around the world.

Those years have seen them experiment with their sound; include talent from the underground metal scene and line-up changes. After a two-year break, they have worked tirelessly to bring forth their latest release “The Guardians Of Our Time Pt.1” It shows listeners a solid collection of songs that will open more doors for the band regarding their career and their already huge sound has the potential to grow further. It also shows that the band are back and they mean business.

The album gets off to a promising start with the intro tracks ‘Open Worlds’ and ‘Guardians Of Our Time’; ‘Open Worlds’ is the atmospheric instrumental that has the listener glued and intrigued right away. ’Guardians Of Our Time’ gives the listener a first glimpse of the talent that is to be expected on the album; from the versatile vocal work of Charlotte Jones to the pounding drum work from Ed Anderson.

Across the album, it is clear why over the years their fan base has grown very quickly. The versatile selection of songs on the album showcase what Winter’s Edge have to offer in terms of musical talent and there is something about the band’s sound that makes someone want to be a better version of themselves.

The pounding rhythm alongside the dominant riff in ‘Path Of Desperation’ ensures that the listener is ready and willing for what’s to come next. The fist pumping energy the track gives off is infectious and will bring you to life in a recorded or live setting.

‘Dying Star’ is a beautiful ballad that initially makes the listener think they will be taking a break from the ground-breaking distortion. Don’t be fooled, this is a deception. It doesn’t make the ballad any less stunning, in fact it adds to this great track. The growls alongside the clean vocals in this track work together well, showing the vast range of Charlotte Jones’ vocals.

It ends on an excellent note with ‘In The End’ and ‘Through The Ferryman’s Eyes’. ‘The former provides one last blast of the bands talent before the latter brings the album to a close with an atmospheric interlude. The song contains excellent guitar work, vocal talent and some great musicianship.

Long-time fans of the band will know that The Ferryman has had great significance throughout the band’s career. The title of their first album was “The Ferryman’s Eyes” so it is great to see a reference to their previous material and that they haven’t forgotten their roots.

By the end of the album, you are left wanting more. You are not ready for it to end. “The Guardians Of Our Time Pt.1” marks a triumphant return from Winter’s Edge. Keep your eyes peeled and ears out for them; you would be a fool to miss them!

 
TRACK LISTING
1. Open Worlds
2. Guardians Of Our Time
3. Path Of Desperation
4. Momentarily
5. Break It Up
6. Dying Star
7. Fatal Dreams
8. In The End
9. Through The Ferryman’s Eyes

 
SOCIAL MEDIA
https://www.wintersedgeband.com/
https://www.facebook.com/OfficialWintersEdge/

https://www.instagram.com/wintersedge/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCztaNnvN98ItoD-fAxS73Wg

 
Banner, Promo Pic

 

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.

Seven Sisters – The Cauldron and The Cross

 

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SEVEN SISTERS – THE CAULDRON AND THE CROSS

Dissonance Productions

Release Date: 13/04/2018

Running Time: 51:18

Review by Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King

9/10

After having the opportunity to interview Graeme from Seven Sisters recently, I thought to myself that I really should give their new album The Cauldron and The Cross a spin, and why not give it a review at the same time.

Seven Sisters are a four-piece heavy metal band from London, who are, in their own words, forged from the same steel as the NWOBHM acts of yesteryear. Formed in 2013 by Kyle McNeil (vocals/guitars) and Graeme Farmer (guitars) in 2013, they are inspired by the likes of the Paul Di’anno era of Iron Maiden, Angel Witch and Virtue.

Says the band: “we have a mix of old school heavy metal (the NWOBHM movement in particular) and elements of power metal, thrash metal and things like that. We’re pretty progressive in places, but our songs are heavily melodic and hopefully pretty catchy too.”

The band have gained a reputation over the past few years as a stellar act in the heavy metal scene, playing shows all over the UK and Europe off the back of two independent releases, “The Warden Demo” in 2014 and “Lost in Time” 7” in 2015. They have since signed to Dissonance Productions and The Cauldron and The Cross is their second album.

With its main source of inspiration being a book written by Marion Zimmer Bradley called “The Mists of Avalon”, The Cauldron and The Cross is a concept album, a story that involves the two religions of Paganism and Christianity. With its myth and magical title tracks and a cover artwork depicting what looks like a scene from a fantasy film, this album has all the hallmarks of a typical power metal release.

But, this is power metal with a twist. Although, the power elements are unmistakably there, the thrash elements the band themselves stated were an influence can also be heard, but then so can the NWOBHM traits.

But that’s not all. On top of all this are the subtle prog influences too. I have never really been a prog rock/metal fan but the time changes throughout the individual tracks are clear to hear. Time changes are one of the aspects of prog music that turned me off the genre, but in this album, they seem to flow a lot better. And this, along with the changes in key, really does make it seem as if the music and lyrics are talking to you.

This is a band that obviously has an immense talent. Despite the relatively short time they have been together, they work so well and sound like they have been doing this for years. And that is something not found very often.

I read somewhere that the band intended on being a five piece, looking to recruit a singer to fill the fifth place and that Kyle was only a stand in singer. I can honestly say, that in my opinion, NOT getting that fifth person was the best thing for the band. Kyle is an absolutely fantastic singer with a voice that can cover a whole variety of ranges. He is ideally suited to the music the band play and I think that if they were to replace him now (please don’t) the whole dynamic of the band will change.

This album has everything from the speed metal of the opening track “Premonition” to the Maiden-influenced “Once and Future King” to the slower pace of “Blood and Fire.” There is also the ‘obligatory’ power ballad in “Oathbreaker” but this is, by no means, just a track that has been thrown in because people expect a ballad. It fits perfectly into the structure of the album and is one of the best tracks on it.

Stand out tracks for me, apart from “Oathbreaker” as mentioned above, are “Blood and Fire” and the double epic tracks “The Cauldron and The Cross Parts 1 and 2” at the end of the album, but my absolute favourite must be “The Turning of The Tide.” I could have that track on repeat for hours and not get bored with it.

So, should you go out and by this great album from this fantastic young band? Yes, you sure as hell do! This is a must for power metal fans, thrash metal fans, NWOBHM fans and traditional heavy metal fans alike.

I absolutely adored this album, and, for me, this is one of the best albums that has been released this year.

TRACK LISTING
The Premonition
Blood And Fire
Once And Future King
Partings The Mists
Turning Of The Tide
Oathbreaker
A Land In Darkness
The Cauldron And The Cross Pt.1
The Cauldron And The Cross Pt.2

SOCIAL MEDIA
https://sevensistersuk.bigcartel.com/
https://www.facebook.com/sevensistersheavymetal/

263857_Seven_Sisters_pic_2

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King 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.