Kill All The Gentlemen – The Loss And The Rapture

The Loss And The Rapture Cover

Kill All The Gentlemen – The Loss And The Rapture
Sliptrick Records
Release Date: 22/11/2018
Running Time: 39:37
Review by ‘Dark Juan’
8/10

Greetings, neophytes, zelators and the mildly curious about the occult activities of the Left Hand Path. It is I, the Groove Ipssisimus Dark Juan here to give you the “benefit” of my wisdom about many things: One of them might even be what I’m supposed to be writing about, but to be honest I think you might be shit out of luck on that score today, and possibly for the rest of the week. Mainly because it has been that hot here I haven’t been able to do anything apart from lie on the cool tiled floor of the lounge, bemoan the French government for allowing this heatwave to happen and curse Satan for not shutting the back door to hell behind me after I kicked him in his nefarious big red balls and fucked off after he dared to suggest my soul belongs to him. As far as I am concerned, you have to have a soul in order for it to belong to anyone, and the twisted, foetid little black knot of unspeakable rage that lives in my chest does not qualify as a soul. More a weapon. Anyway, I am sat (sitting would be the correct grammar, according to my guest who has just left to go skiing in the Alps. He’s a lawyer and went to a very exclusive school where they taught him Latin and stuff. My Dying Bride taught me Latin – Incendere suus, damnare suus vita. Dare suus ad art ventus) in my Fourth Invocation Robes (Summer Weight (Refrigerated)) dying slowly of dehydration whilst simultaneously drinking as much alcohol as I can cram down my avid throat whilst I listen to Kill All The Gentlemen’s latest offering, entitled “The Loss And The Rapture” (Phew, we got to it in the end. Well done for sticking with me this far…) This band is based in England, more specifically Exeter in Devon, although I am privately convinced that at least two members of the band are NOT Devonian by birth. I shall leave you, dear reader, to work out who they might be.

Disclaimer – My Fourth Invocation Robes (Summer Weight) are a lie. I’m wearing green pyjama pants with Animal from the Muppets on them, black and white striped espadrilles and a not wholly unironic Spinal Tap t-shirt. This is because I have had a high concentration of supreme quality metal recently and because of sex wees, trouser explosions and sheer excitement coupled with being of a certain age I have single-handedly created a Breton underwear drought. Hence with the expectation of this being a rather splendid slab of depleted uranium heaviness, I have elected to eschew pants. No tighty whities for Dark Juan!

I am not disappointed with the heaviness. This is not music. It is an avalanche with some poor fucker on skis in front of it. It is brutality and violence in musical form. This is A VERY GOOD THING. I know I rattle on about melody and quality tunesmithing, but there are times you (I, certainly) just want to have your brain turned to soup. KATG are rather good at this, but to write them off as just a kind of fairly generic death/ extreme metal band is to not pay sufficient attention to them. The title track of this record is a FUCKING GLORIOUS THING THAT EVERY SINGLE METAL FAN SHOULD HAVE A COPY OF BY ORDER OF DARK JUAN YOU FUCKING BUNCH OF BASTARD PHILISTINES!!!!!! It is almost prog in its complexity, with light and dark and fucking loud and quiet and vocals that range from the chilling whisper you get in your ear a split second before the brandished steel blade is drawn across your throat and your lifeblood pumps from you in minutes, to the kind of open throated roar that normally emanates from a giant, radioactive lizard intent on razing Japanese cities to the ground. It is a roar you should never play at any volume in San Francisco as you will just seismically stimulate the San Andreas Fault into an early earthquake. Well done, Kill All The Gentlemen; you have turned a beautiful 1920s city by the sea into a massive fucking Lovecraftian hole simply by the power of your heavy fucking metal. This is behaviour that needs to be encouraged. Can you please do the same to the bunch of Jesus freaks and all round unpleasant cock juggling thundercunts that are the Westboro Baptist Church, please? I might have a highly illegal and possibly unstable cache of trinitrotoluene secreted somewhere nearby should you need some explosive assistance… The album as a whole is a solid and powerful piece of speedy, sharpened metal with a bass sound that reminded me greatly of the 80’s British thrash band Acid Reign. The opening cut on this record, ‘I Welcome The Horror’ has the potential to be a minor classic, starting with the kind of music that you would expect from 80’s Italian horror films before Adam Martin howls, “It’s coming…… NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOWWWWWW!” and you are led down a spiky, flesh ridden, blood-soaked rabbit hole of metal brutality seldom experienced from British bands. It is a fine song and it is representative of the whole record. It is speedy and powerful and jolly good fun if you like mosh pits and losing your teeth while cannoning off other people intent on changing their own dentistry. All the songs are exciting, solid slabs of granite hard heavy metal underpinned with the prodigious roar of the estimable Mr. Martin. The title track is far and away my favourite on the record though, as it stands head and shoulders above the rest for quality, interest and ability. This is not to say that the rest of the record is bad because it really isn’t! ‘These Are Godless Times’ is another absolute stormer of a song and hopefully destined for permanent airplay on many record stations.

In short then, KATG have shaken me out of a post visit bout of existential misery, but they have also caused me to cane the gin and tonic and now I’m wankered all over again.

Thank you, gentlemen, thank you.

A fine, fine record then. Give them your readies and buy their records.

The Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System has been quaffing many alcoholic beverages during the course of this album and awards it a splendidly squiffy 8/10. Well worth your effort, though. British metal is back on the up!

TRACKLISTING:
01. I Welcome The Horror
02. Sing For Me Sinner
03. Where Here Is I Know Not
(Could be the Dark Juan theme tune! We went to La Gacilly for a photographic exhibition yesterday. Got lost twice. The Volkswaffe doesn’t have sat nav, which made opportunities for deflowering virgins and subverting the Church tricky as we were on the minutes. I had to content myself with telling a nun she worshipped a false god and she needed cock…)
04. These Are Godless Times (Well, I am doing my best! Burn down a church!)
05. Death’s Very Emissary (Oh yes, that IS me…)
06. The Loss And The Rapture
07. Damnation Be My Guide
08. Once A Slave
(NEVER A FUCKING SLAVE! DARK JUAN WILL ACHIEVE DOMINION OVER ALL!!! Probably to a soundtrack of Kill All The Gentlemen.)

LINE-UP:
Adam Martin – Vocals/Guitar
Christian Axsel – Guitar/Backing Vocals
Thomas Arne Rørstad – Drums
Ben Andrew – Bass
Drums on the album recorded by Olan Parkinson

LINKS:
https://www.facebook.com/killallthegentlemen/

https://www.instagram.com/katgband/
https://killallthegentlemen.bigcartel.com/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCCHlWuQVXpl8ZloY1-CXQNQ

 

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.

EMQ’s with HELLSCREAM

Hellscream logo

EMQ’s with HELLSCREAM

Hi Everyone. Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with California based Metal band Hellscream! Huge thanks to vocalist Norman Skinner for taking part!

What is your name, what do you play and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

My name is Norman Skinner and I am the vocalist for Hellscream. This band started as a musical collaboration between David Garcia and myself back in 2011-2012. We had known each other from our other bands (Cage & Imagika). We started demoing a few tracks and it was clear that there was some great chemistry. We released our debut album “Made Immortal” in 2013 and had since been asked time and again to record a follow-up album. Our second album “Hate Machine” releases July 26th 2019 through Pure Steel Records.

How did you come up with your band name?

One day Dave sent me a message asking what we were going to call this new beast of a band. I wanted something cool sounding and started putting words together. I checked and there was no band called Hellscream and learned as well it was a term for strange screaming sounds emitting from the ground that some people thought were tortured souls in Hell. I thought to myself “That is Metal!”. Dave loved it and here we are.

What country are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

Hellscream are from the United States, specifically California. The Metal\Rock scene here is either definitely alive and well but very underground. Lots of local bands from every city some good and many not so much. Sadly, Metal is not a popular music genre in the United States compared to many countries unless it’s bands like Metallica or Slayer. Then people come out to see these bands.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single or Video)

Our latest release is our full length album titled “Hate Machine” scheduled to drop on 07/26/19 worldwide.

Who have been your greatest influences?

Of course I cannot speak for the other band members but for me I would say Iced Earth, Primal Fear, Killswitch Engage, Evergrey, Halford, Savatage, Mystic Prophecy, Angel Dust, Testament, Kamelot, Symphony X and so many more…

What first got you into music?

I believe it was being a young kid watching videos on MTV. The bands were larger than life and always got the hottest women. HA HA!

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Off the top of my head I would have to say perhaps Tuomas Holopainen (Nightwish) or Thomas Youngblood (Kamelot). I love the brooding yet beautiful sounds\songs they create. It’s a sound I am very into these days but have yet to dive into.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Wacken Open Air! It’s known as the biggest and the best so that would be my choice.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

Ha ha!! A “Tuggie”. It’s like a warm sock covering for your penis.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Thank you so very much for all your ongoing support of myself and each and every one of my projects.

If you could bring one Metal/Rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Hands down Ronnie James Dio! No explanation needed.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

I love creating songs with musicians. The lyrical story, the structure, demoing and ultimately recording. Adding the artwork, photos etc. Basically, creating something spectacular from nothing. Performing live is always a huge plus as well as meeting so many fantastic people while traveling. What I hate is the politics of the music business. It’s a hard business if you are trying to make it as a career or even part time.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

Better payouts for streams and downloads of artist music.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Skid Row – “Slave To The Grind”. Such a heavy & melodic album plus Sebastian Bach sounds like a vocal God on it.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

I’m partial to downloads as I listen to all my music electronically but CD’s is a close second because there is something awesome about having the booklet and lyrics etc. I like Vinyl only for the large album art.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

That’s a tough one. I would have to say The Thrash Against Cancer Benefit with my band Imagika for Chuck Billy of Testament. So many great Bay Area thrash bands.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

I would probably be into graphic design or writing screenplays. Something creative for sure.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Josh Gates (Archeologist), Neil deGrasse Tyson (Astrophysicist), Zack Bagans (Paranormal Investigator), Giorgio A. Tsoukalos (Ancient Alien Theorist), Ben Kissel (Podcast Host)… the discussions going on would be mind-blowing!!

What’s next for the band?

Well, the new album is scheduled for release this month and we will most likely release a lyric video as well. Potentially a few live appearances. We haven’t really discussed plans as I have been busy with Niviane & Imagika and the rest of Hellscream busy with Cage & Three Tremors.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

Spotify, Facebook, YouTube, Instagram & Twitter. Find us on all of them!
https://www.facebook.com/hellscream666/
https://twitter.com/HellscreamOffi1
https://www.instagram.com/nlskinner3/
https://open.spotify.com/artist/7rd4e4epuVfcf5K3Cagwsw

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

They are CAKES that just happen to be biscuit sized.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Thank you for the band spotlight and anyone interested in checking out the band’s debut release “Made Immortal” can find it on Spotify, YouTube etc. Our new album “Hate Machine” is released July 26th through Pure Steel Records. Thank you all!

 

Hellscream Promo

 

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

 

EMQ’s with BLIND CROSS

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EMQ’s with BLIND CROSS

Hi Everyone. Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Heavy Metal band Blind Cross! Huge thanks to vocalist Juan Ricardo for taking part!

What is your name, what do you play and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

Hello my name is Juan Ricardo. I am the lead vocalist of Blind Cross. Blind Cross was formed by guitarist Rocco Stellmacher after the break-up of his band Gorgons Eye. He started writing new songs and put together a new band with drummer Andy Korte and bassist Matze Horold from the band Double Action. After a long search for a vocalist, he had a conversation with Pure Steel records president Andreas Lorenz who suggested asking me if I would be interested… I had recently released records with Sunless Sky, Ritual and Wretch plus had a new album coming out from Dark Arena on the label. Once I heard the songs I was immediately impressed by Rocco’s use of melody and the overall classic metal sound of the recording and instantly said YES.

How did you come up with your band name?

The name Blind Cross was created by Rocco. He thought that in every person’s life there is a cross that we must bear… an event that shaped our lives… but this is a cross that no one can actually know or see… so it is a Blind Cross.

What country are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

Well this is a two part question because I am from America and the band is from Germany. In America the metal scene is good, especially in the major cities like Cleveland where I am from… but overall it is about new style mainstream metal bands in America in general. Whereas in Germany, and most of Europe, the metal scene is considered better because they are still into traditional metal styles and have not changed as much with the current trends. So in Germany they are still into what people consider “True” metal whereas America is not…

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single or Video)

Blind Cross has completed our debut album called “Merciless Time” that is due to be released on July 5th. To go with this release we have finished two videos to promote the album. A lyric video for the lead-off track on the album called ‘The Hammer And The Nail’ and an official video to the first single off the album called ‘Bioluminosity’.

Who have been your greatest influences?

I started singing in bands when I was 10 and eventually studied classical music and opera in college, so my first influence would be Luciano Pavarotti but as I became a metal singer my influences are: Ronnie James Dio, Robert Halford, Bruce Dickinson, Geoff Tate, James Rivera, Geddy Lee, Freddy Mercury and Midnight of Crimson Glory.

What first got you into music?

I had always had a love and interest in music but my musical career actually began, like I said, when I was 10. My mom had friends who were in a Spanish band that was looking for a drummer and singer, and she mentioned that I could play… so in desperation they tried me out and I got the gig. I began my metal career in another odd way… I was in college and at a party singing when a group of guys approached me and complimented me and asked if I ever considered singing metal? I asked if they meant bands like Judas Priest? and surprised them by singing ‘Victim of Changes’ and was asked to join the band which eventually was called Stryker.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Wow! Anyone? I guess I would sing with Iron Maiden… Doesn’t everyone? If I had to have a second choice it would be to do a project with the members of Rush… They have been my favourite band since I first heard them in high school when they released the album 2112 in the mid 70’s.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

This is an easy one…Wacken in Germany! As a metal band this is almost everyone’s dream… but if I had a second choice it would actually be Prog-Power in Atlanta, Georgia in the U.S. Festivals are the big trend now world-wide, it’s hard to get fans to go to small shows but they will attend a festival. I’m actually an organizer of a festival in Cleveland for the label called Pure Steel Metalfest each fall on November 1st, 2nd and 3rd.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

The weirdest gift for me is that people try to buy me drinks at every show… I don’t drink alcohol but as the singer in the metal band I don’t think people believe me. Every show someone will buy me a drink and after I tell them “thanks but no thanks” they will insist, so I will graciously accept them but I give the drink to a band mate or another fan.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

If I had one message it would be thank you. Thank you for supporting me and countless other metal musicians with their passion for the music. We are doing this because of them, they are the reason metal is alive and strong after all these years.

If you could bring one Metal/Rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

This would be the man that was the greatest influence on me when it comes to my singing style in metal; the one and only Ronnie James Dio. It is my single, greatest regret that of all the amazing vocalist I have seen that I never got to see him perform live…

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

I love being a musician… Being creative, the fellowship you have with the members of your band, I love travelling and seeing new places, I love meeting the fans and talking about music with them, their energy excites me and makes me want to be the best I can be for them… I do hate being away from my family for extended periods of time.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

If there was one thing I do not like it would be the dog-eat-dog nature of the business part of making music. Everyone realizes how difficult it is to actually make it in music, especially in metal… that leads some people to have the mentality of success at any price, which is unfortunate… making music should be about the joy and the love of music. I always try to help young and up-coming bands and that is why I am also an A+R rep for the record label.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Two albums changed my life…First was Rush – “2112”…It opened my eyes to what heights songwriting could reach, musicianship at its highest level…and Second was Rainbow – “Rising”… When I first heard ‘Stargazer’ I was in awe…Dio had so much power and passion in his voice, I knew I wanted to sound like that.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

I have hundreds of each, but vinyl has a real place in my heart cause that’s what I grew up on and of course you would love the big cover art work…but honestly, I almost never listen to my vinyl anymore. Nowadays if I’m home I will listen to my CD’s cause I enjoy the sound quality…but if I’m working on music it’s on a digital format because all the recording studios I work at have gone almost completely digital… I see a time in the near future where all music will be sold entirely digitally.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

Well I’ve done thousands of shows over the past 40 years so I think I will say three recent ones… Sunless Sky at The Priest’s Cave in Brno, Czech Republic in 2017…Ritual at The Full Metal festival in Niederjossa, Germany this past March…and Wretch at The Spirit of Metal festival in Hamburg, Germany this year. Hopefully I will be able to add a Blind Cross show to this list soon..!

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

An athlete! I was a professional boxer at one time and have been running marathons since I was in college… of course that is if I could regain my youth. Even though I’m in my late fifties now, I’m still in very good shape but I would be retired… With music I can continue to perform for as long as people want to see me, my voice feels great.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Anyone? President Barack Obama, Urban Meyer… ex-football coach of Ohio State University, Film producer Steven Spielberg, Horror writer Steven King and Boxing champion Felix Trinidad.

What’s next for the band?

For Blind Cross everything is wide open… Touring is of course a possibility, it may be too early to start thinking about the next record but in music you always have to be looking to the future.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

Look for Blind Cross on Facebook or look up any of my projects on Facebook or Pure Steel Records website
https://puresteel-records.com
https://www.facebook.com/Juan-Ricardo-182768288403262/

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

I honestly don’t know what a Jaffa cake is… but judging from the name I’m going to guess a Cake.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

You’re very welcome and I want to thank you for this chance to share my music with everyone. Stay heavy, stay metal…!

 

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

Chasing Dragons – Faction

Faction Cover

Chasing Dragons – Faction
Self-Released
Release Date: 5/10/2018
Running Time: 46:14
Review by Beth Jones
10/10

We are a little late to the party with this review, but better late than never eh! Seeing the formidable figure of Chasing Dragons lead singer, Tank, sitting on the bar of the ‘G’s Bar Stage’, performing a breathtakingly beautiful and emotive song that moved me to tears, was one of my stand out moments of last years Amplified Festival, so having the chance to review debut album “Faction” is making me very happy. Now, there are those who would say I’m an emotional old sausage who cries at everything! Whilst in some contexts that is true, where it comes to music, it takes something special to move me to that point.

Hailing from Leeds and delivering a brilliant cross over of Heavy Metal and Rock with a really fresh feel about it, Chasing Dragons are made up of Tank on lead vocals, Adam on guitar and vocals, Murf on bass and vocals, and Kate on drums. If you haven’t heard of them yet, trust me you need to. This album is their first release since second EP “Faction: Prologue” in 2016. It is so current, but also has such a great mix of classic styles, that will be one of those albums that will come to be classed as timeless. It could quite easily cross over into mainstream with its sound, all be it at the heavier end of mainstream, with something in there for everyone to like.

Musically, it is punchy and crunchy, but not over the top. It is very precise, and fast paced, but Tank’s vocals take it to a whole new level. She has an absolutely astonishing voice, which is immensely powerful and immensely beautiful in equal measures. It soars above the music, but she has the ability to bring it down in an instant and deliver tender passages with poise and elegance. I am so unbelievably jealous! In a couple of songs, ‘Bareknuckle Lover’ and ‘Whitehorse’ in particular, her voice reminds me of one of my idols; Skunk Anansie front lady, Skin. But musically, the whole band sound has more about it than Skunk Anansie ever did, which I find incredibly exciting, considering in the late 90’s they were my go-to band when I needed to get my head straight! It draws influence from bands such as Avenged Sevenfold, Halestorm, Nothing More and New Years Day, and melds every element together perfectly. The whole album is emotive and intense, pulling you in to every note, every chord progression, every rhythm, every word. I love it. Simple as that.

Production wise, it is also an absolute triumph. Everything is balanced, and nothing is out of place, even down to the tiniest differences in the amount of reverb or effects used, it is all spot on.

I wanted to pick a ‘favourite track to talk about’, but I couldn’t narrow it down to less than four! Firstly ‘Parasite’. It is a real angry track! Starting with frenetic staccato guitar, it rip-roars through three minutes of venomous lyrics of hatred bourn of a toxic relationship. It is powerful in every way, and relatable for every one of us – a brilliant succinct three-dimensional description of the angry bubbling of hopeless hatred that we have all felt at some point in our lives.

‘Devil In Her Eyes’ is another of my picks, but this time for more musical reasons. It is full of cross rhythms, rhythm changes, interesting chord progressions, and a ridiculously catchy hook in the chorus, and again amazing vocals. It also has a proper guitar solo in the middle of it, as well as lots of little intricate bits from every instrument, making it a great all-round track. It ends abruptly, leading into my next pick – ‘The Connection’.

Starting with a solitary piano note, with a touch of reverb, then a pause (silence speaks so much louder sometimes, don’t you think?) then another solitary note and pause leads into a minor chord, and crystal-clear mournful vocals that reach into your soul. Then in come the drums, not too much, but you can feel it building, and as the vocals sore, everything kicks in and bam, there are the goose bumps. It just makes me want to shout out with the pleasure and pain and joy and sadness and every other emotion that this record instils in me. Ok, so I actually think on reflection, this is my favourite song on the album, but the other three are very close!

My last pick is penultimate track ‘Whitehorse’. It starts with a nice bit of synth, and then the whole thing kicks in, in real headbanging fashion, again with brilliant little riffs and hooks popping up all over the place, and those same damn awesome vocals that just slay me they are so good. I’m sorry, I’m rambling. That’s it, I’m done.

There is one word to describe this album – passion. Complete and utter passion oozes through the whole thing – passion for the music, passion for the craft, passion for the storytelling of the subject matter. By far the most emotive album I have listened to in a long time, and I would recommend it to anyone who wants to get their heart racing or get lost in a perfect storm. I feel invigorated! I’m going for a lie down!!!

TRACKLISTING:
01. We Are The Wall
02. How The World Went Black
03. Parasite
04. Like Gravity
05. Bareknuckle Lover
06. For Kingdom For Glory
07. This Time Is Ours
08. Devil In Her Eyes
09. The Connection
10. I’m No Devil (I’m Just A Girl)
11. Whitehorse

LINKS:
https://www.chasingdragons.co.uk/
https://www.facebook.com/chasingdragonsuk

https://www.instagram.com/chasingdragonsuk/
https://chasingdragons.bigcartel.com/
https://www.youtube.com/user/ChasingDragonsUK

 

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.

Black Alice – Sons Of Steel

Sons Of Steel Cover

Black Alice – Sons Of Steel
Karthago Records
Release Date: 12/10/2018
Running Time: 54:20
Review by Mark Pritchard
9/10

This is my review of the Remastered album “Sons Of Steel” by Australian Old-School Heavy Metal/Heavy Rock band Black Alice. When I saw that it was originally released in 1988, the year I was born, it made me even more intrigued to have this opportunity to write about it. This is the first time I have heard the band and I can’t tell you how much of an honour it has been to have the chance to review such an Old-School band. Just so everyone knows, when I say the term “Old-School” what I mean is that they have the same kind of sound as Rock/Metal legends AC/DC, Iron Maiden and Black Sabbath of which I am a huge fan of as I grew up listening to them.

First and foremost listening to these guys really takes me back to when I was younger, with the radio on rocking along to the legends and every time I have listened to “Sons Of Steel” it has been with a smile on my face! Everything about this album, the instrumentation, awesome guitar riffs and smooth vocals has been a beautiful experience. This album has lifted my spirits when there have been times I have felt down. I love it when music does this!

I’m not sure how this remaster compares to the original but the passion and dedication of Scott Johnston (Drums), Andy Cichon (Bass), Jamie Page (Guitars) and Rob Hartley (Vocals) shines through. That also goes for guest vocalist Jeff Dunn who appears on the track ‘The Burn’. “Sons Of Steel” was originally released in very small numbers so almost no-one has heard it. Well it has been a joy to listen to and I will continue to return to it!

Now comes the hard part of any review and that is the rating. My favourite song on “Sons Of Steel” is the title track. From a good intro to a great up-tempo track with really good vocals this is probably the song I have listened to most. As for the album itself well I have to give it 9/10. Great band, amazing album and I definitely suggest checking Black Alice out if you get the opportunity because you won’t regret it!

I’d like to thank the band, Karthago Records for releasing a rarely heard gem of an album and to Ever Metal for giving me the chance to review “Sons Of Steel” Check out the links below!

TRACKLISTING:
01. Something In The Air
02. Sons Of Steel
03. There’s Hope
04. Hard Lover
05. You And Me (Bonus Track)
06. Fighting For You
07. Mr. System
08. I’m With You
09. The Burn (Bonus Track)
10. Reck
11. Walk In The Blues
12. The Burn (instrumental)

LINKS:
https://www.facebook.com/BlackAliceband/
http://www.sonsofsteel.rocks/band-news.html

 

CD800S

 

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.

Woven Man – Revelry (In Our Arms)

Revelry (In Our Arms) Cover

Woven Man – Revelry (In Our Arms)
Undergroove Records
Release Date: 11/01/2019
Running Time: 34:17
Review by ‘Dark Juan’
9/10

Good evening, my fellow dark souls of black and other ill-suited arabesques. Dark Juan here, coming down off a spectacularly drunken Saturday night with Eurovision. But we shan’t go into that. All you need to know is that Dark Juan approves of all Eurovision shenanigans, especially when Icelandic BDSM aggrotech acts show support for Palestine in the middle of Tel Aviv. Madonna, though. She was a fucking disaster zone. She sang flatter than a witch’s tit all through her song. The poor old sausage, desperately trying to remain relevant. Give up, old girl. You’re a granny now, like, and hanging about with idiotically named rappers repeating the last word of a line whilst using a square wave processor and doing some kind of bizarre electronic reggae-lite is not dignified. And stop dressing like a fucking steampunk sky-pirate, as well.

Yeah, Woven Man. Of course I have remembered what I am here for. They are Welsh. I’m allowed to make any Welsh joke I like because I lived there for several years, and let me tell you most of them were come up with by Welshmen. However, guitarist Lee “Roy” Davies, during his tenure with Lifer, stayed at my house in Yorkshire one time and was PERSONALLY responsible for the worst hangover I have ever suffered, the sawn off little shit. Never before or since has a trip to Ripon ever taken four hours from Halifax…..

“Revelry (In Our Arms)” starts, rather interestingly, and in my opinion jarringly, with a banjo. Cue the possibility of a joke about hillbillies considering it was recorded in Llanelli, but I have just remembered I have played the Mason’s Arms in Llanelli and my old band used to practice there… Makes me a hillbilly too then. Shit. Can’t do that one. Bollocks. Anyway, we are soon rid of the banjo and suddenly the inside of my head explodes with a COLOSSAL explosion of fuzz tinged distortion as the Woven Man battlewagon gets kicked into gear with ‘Calling Down The Leaves’. Holy fuck. That production is huge. It’s like somebody bludgeoning you with heavy fucking metal. Yes, this is what we want! The opening riff sends my eyeballs spinning and we are away with a nine minute paean to the gods of stoner and space rock. Yes, this record is heavier than an anvil at terminal velocity, but there are touches of Kyuss and more especially Hawkwind in the opening song. Especially near the end of the song. This is a good thing. I fucking love Hawkwind and immediately love anyone else who does too.

Running through the record there’s a distinct Clutch vibe going on, but this again is no bad thing. The songwriting is good, the vocals diverse and interesting and the music played with the kind of relaxed aplomb that can only come with being off your tits on some party treats. Every song is good. ‘I Am Mountain’ starts with a bass riff that rearranged my internal organs, turned my liver into liquid and made my blood come out of my nose. The sound of both bass and guitar is magnificently, cosmically humungous and ‘I Am Mountain’ has an almost grunge like, Soundgardeny arrangement and structure, with a guitar line dripping with wah wah before the chorus kicks in, in the most satisfyingly metal way possible and melts your face, again. There’s a lot of face melting on this record. ‘With Willow’ is the third track on this five song debut, and it is Sabbathian and Clutchy and my personal favourite track for my 4am commute to work at maximum volume. It’s a stonker and never fails to wake me the fuck up. ‘Maker’s Mark’ starts with the kind of clean electric guitar chord medley Metallica favoured at the start of ‘Harvester Of Sorrow’, but played with considerably more finesse than the overrated Yank chancers. And then it explodes. Again my brains are smeared across the wall behind me by the sheer enormity of the sound of this record, necessitating a quick clean up lest Mrs. Dark Juan complains about the mess. She’s sick of me leaking body fluids and organs all over the house when I listen to metal. She says that blood is a very persistent stain on the curtains. Closing track ‘Of Land And Sky’ has caused my brainpan to explode and now the lounge looks like that nightclub in the third Hellraiser film after Pinhead decides to show the clientele what he thinks a good time is. It is good and the vocal has a very appealing harder, heavier more brutal edge, Sion roaring “SUMMON THE TEMPEST!” and sounding rather like the rather wonderful Karl Middleton of Earthtone9 whilst doing so. In fact, the whole song reminds me of that brilliant Nottingham mob, with added sludge.

Woven Man have released a hell of a record. Brutal, proficient and one that rewards multiple listens. I’ve played it so many times you’ll hear “SUMMON THE TEMPEST!” from underground in the corner of an old graveyard somewhere. That will be me in my grave. And I’m not just saying it because Lee is one of my friends. It is a fucking killer record and one that proper should put Welsh metal on the map. Best thing to come out of Wales since the road back to England, really. For the record, I’m fucking joking here, alright? I loved Wales and living in Castell Newydd Emlyn. And Cwmdwyfran. And Aberystwyth. Other fine Welsh things are Felinfoel Double Dragon beer, Llanelli’s finest pint. Or Brains’ SA. Or Fuel Rock Club on Womanby Street in Cardiff. Or Crowleys Rock Bar in Swansea. It appears there are many fine things to come out of West and South Wales and Woven Man are one of the finest. I order you all to spend all of your money on Woven Man gear and music. Right away, you UTTER SCOUNDRELS!!!

Also, cofiwch Dryweryn. Diolch yn fawr.

(Rick here, for those that do not know or understand the Welsh language this translates to “Remember Tryweryn. Thank you very much”. Google Dryweryn/Tryweryn and you’ll find out about this piece of Welsh history that is forgotten by many and not known about by many more!)

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System (System Sgorio Gwastadedd Gwaed Gwlyb Juan Tywyll yn y Cymraeg… Ha! Bet that took you by surprise didn’t it? I actually know a bit of [probably incorrect] Welsh!) has forbore from making any jokes about wellington boots and sheep during this review because it was taken aback by the brilliance on display here. 9/10. Woven Man lose a mark for not giving me enough heavy fucking metal on this record. I need more. I can’t even say that Wales are shit at rugby anymore, because they won the Six Nations. I’ll never forgive them for the Manic Street Preachers, though. That’s unforgivable.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Calling Down The Leaves
02. I Am Mountain
03. With Willow
04. Maker’s Mark
05. Of Land And Sky

WOVEN MAN ARE:
I don’t know. Apart from the legendary Lee “Roy” Davies, they haven’t seen fit to leave any information on the internet that might enlighten me… I shall just consult the physical copy Lee sent me. Ah ha, here we go…
Sion McKinnon – Vocals
Donal Owen – Drums
Andrew Brookes – Bass
Mark Pitts – Guitar
Lee “Roy” Davies – Guitar

LINKS:
https://www.facebook.com/wovenisms/
https://www.instagram.com/wovenman/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCs2ZP08NopIx6dRKNPkMEFg

 

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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.

Dirge – Lost Empyrean

Lost Empyrean Cover

Dirge – Lost Empyrean
Debemur Morti Productions
Release Date: 14/12/2018
Running Time: 55:38
Review by ‘Dark Juan’
10/10

Good evening, dear brothers and sisters of the one true faith. That being metal, not one of the false prophets and their excuses for religions. Only metal is real. There is no Zuul, only metal. If you’re an Eighties kid you’ll get that reference. If not, I’d like to say sorry for confusing you but I’m really not, so I won’t. Well, that’s started this review off with a faintly negative and nihilistic tone. Again, sorry not sorry! Anyway, shall we see whether Dirge can turn these frowns upside down and whether they are worth discharging mucho dinero on? Walk with me, dear friends of Baphomet, into my playroom. That’s where my kickass stereo is. Ignore the surgical instruments – they are just for decoration, after all. No, that’s not blood, its patina. What? No, I didn’t lock the door behind you, Karen. The deadlocks automatically activate. Please, have a seat. Thank you.

Now we will begin…

A bunch of most estimable Parisians, Dirge took the extraordinary step of announcing that they were splitting up after 25 years two months after they released the record I am listening to, “Lost Empyrean”. This has caused me great upset and consternation because this record is a spectacularly brutal affair and Dirge hadn’t come across my Satanic radar before. Lost Empyrean is absolutely huge. It’s colossal. It’s mountainous, monolithic riffs of splendour and magnificence. And I’m fucking pissed off with the bastards for splitting up on me, especially considering Paris is within easy reach of the village I am slowly purging of all its inhabitants. They remind me of a less polished Crowbar, with elements of Swans, Red Harvest (circa ) and Paradise Lost. This is a splendid set of influences to have in my not actually very humble at all opinion, because PL, RH and Swans are fucking awesome, dude. The production job on this record is that rarest of things – perfect for the music that is recorded. Every instrument is rendered with precision. I can hear every drumbeat with perfect clarity and there is a meaty resonance about them that is normally lacking in metal recordings. Normally, metal bass drums sound like someone smacking some taut polythene with a wet and rather perturbed and upset rat. The guitars are razorwire flails, operating at neck height and are chunky as fuck, man. It is not a subtle guitar sound. It is the sound of electric guitar used properly, as a weapon, not a musical instrument; and the bass. Oh, holy fuck, the bass. If there were emojis on Word documents there would be love hearts all over the fucking page just because of the bass guitar. The rumbling, earthquake inducing, lo fi splendiferousness of the bass sound cannot be overstated.

Fuck me crossways. This is apocalypse music. This is the sound of the slow, drawn out, tortured end of the world. It’s shrieking and grinding tectonic plates being forced apart and the heat and power of released magma flows. This is the sound of a multitude of unstoppable armoured vehicles, covered in demonic sigils and crushing human lives down to chunky salsa beneath their spiked tracks. It is the sound of screaming diesel engines belching foul smoke from blackened exhausts and the roar of high powered high explosive shells demolishing fortifications, before matt black battlewagons crush all resistance under their tracks and plough relentlessly on, on to where you are cowering, hidden away in the ruins. It’s the sound of the end of your world, when the muzzle of a robotically controlled machine gun points to your place of concealment and saws the wall you’re hiding behind in half with a burst of half inch calibre leaden slugs. This record is slower and heavier than your mum in a pair of plutonium knickers with a lead brassiere…, while she is wearing a pair of depleted uranium shoes. It is THAT heavy, if you like droney, shoegaze stuff that is. If you revere Dragonforce, you’ll hate it with a vengeance unparalleled in human history. Lost Empyrean is the slow moving means of your death. It doesn’t rely on speed. It relies on superior quality songwriting and the fact Dirge play slow enough to let the music expand. Like the blastwave of a nuclear detonation. This music is utterly, UTTERLY uncompromising. It will not stop until you have been reduced to your component parts and it is grinning through bloodied teeth at you… There’s no point telling you what the best tracks are. This is an album that REQUIRES your attention from start to finish. It honestly is more than the sum of its parts and is a superior experience when listened to as a single body of work, through headphones, where you can subject your cranium to the type of crushing forces normally experienced by a jet fighter pilot pulling 9g. Or your dad, when your mum rides him like a cowgirl.

I never thought I would say this, but this record is the equal of P.H.O.B.O.S’s Phlogiston Catharsis, a record I judged to be the album of the year last year. They too are French. French metal is fucking astonishingly good. I haven’t yet heard a French heavy metal record I haven’t liked. Dirge (until they broke my fucking heart by splitting up, the absolute SHOWER!) are well worth elevating to the Dark Juan Pantheon Of Wonderful Excellence, where they sit with such luminaries as the aforementioned P.H.O.B.O.S. and Rivers Of Nihil and Gunship and others.

Ejaculate vast wads (of cash, you fucking filthy pervert) and buy everything Dirge have ever done so they will reform and I can go and have my brain turned to soup at a Dirge gig. You need Dirge in your life. Everyone needs Dirge in their life.

Simply staggering. I am literally sat in a dark room on my own with Dirge ringing in my head, wondering how the fuck does metal top this. I’m not sure it can. One thing is for certain, I’m not writing anything else tonight because anything else I listen to is just going to sound like appalling shite. I’m going for a lie down. My brain hurts.

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System (Das Patentierte Dunkle Juan-Blut-Splat-Bewertungssystem, just because I like the way it sounds in German) has ruined every pair of trousers it has with many, many Dirge induced sex wees, has levelled its own house by playing Dirge too loudly and is currently sat shell-shocked among the wreckage wondering what to do with itself. This means Dirge are awarded 10/10. Full fucking marks, brothers and sisters of the true faith. FULL FUCKING MARKS.

TRACKLISTING:
01 Wingless Multitudes
02 Hosea 8 7
03 Algid Troy
04 The Burden Of Almost
05 Lost Empyrean
06 A Sea Of Light
07 Sarracenia

DIRGE ARE: (were, as it transpires…. this is devastating news)
Marc T.
Alain B.
Stéphane L.
Luz
They did not deign to tell me what instruments they played and I am too drunk to care… you have the internet, you find out!

LINKS:
http://www.dirge.fr
https://www.facebook.com/pg/DIRGE.fr/

 

Session Dirge - Paris, decembre 2017

 

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.

 

 

EMQ’s with BLACK HORIZON

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EMQ’s with BLACK HORIZON

Hi Everyone. Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with French Heavy Metal band Black Horizon. Huge thanks to them for taking part!

What is your name, what do you play and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

Hi. I’m Dom and I play bass guitar in BLACK HORIZON. We play heavy metal!!!
The band was born in the south of Paris in 1991 with my brother Seb and a great friend of us on the guitars. After many changes, Fifi (drums) arrived in 2002 and Alex (lead vocals) in 2017. We’ve played with many other bands like Blaze Bayley, Paul di Anno, Satan Joker, Killers, Tank… in France, Belgium, Russia… and recorded many EP and one LP “The Choice” before “Dark Light”.

How did you come up with your band name?

We choose our name using the initials “B” and “H” in memory of our friend Hervé Boucher who died in sad circumstances when he was very young. We would like to pay homage to him and to keep thinking about him when we play music. His disappearance is probably a source of inspiration for the dark side of some of our lyrics…!

What country are you from and what is the metal scene like there?

We come from France. Metal scene is not very well considered in this country! In fact, there are many very good bands but Heavy Metal stays an underground scene (most of the part, of course…)! Most of people here are attracted by big festivals where they can see all their favourite bands at one time, but it’s more difficult with smaller concerts.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

In the past, we took part in one French Heavy Metal compilation and one tribute album to a French speed metal band called “Killers” and we have released 3 EP’s:
Our first one was “Did You Hear It? After, we put out “The 1st Door” and “T.I.M.E.”!
Then we released our 1st album “The Choice”. This is the first part of the story told in “Dark Light “, our new album. It’s a story about a guy, schizophrenic, who’s watching for his past, looking for the reason why he is killing insane people! Listen to the new album, you’ll discover why…! 😉
“Dark Light” will be released on May 17th around the world via German label “Pure Steel Publishing”.
We were lucky to have with us Blaze Bayley the ex-singer of Iron Maiden. He participates in a duet with Alex on one of our songs ‘Walking Close To Me’.
We also have a second special guest, Andy Kuntz, the singer of Vanden Plas, who was kind enough to sing on an acoustic version of a love song ‘Miles Away’!
We worked very hard to propose to our fans a product of quality concerning the sound as well as the inside artwork.
We are very proud of what we are going to propose and can’t wait to share it with you.

Who have been your greatest influences?

For me, it’s Iron Maiden. I love Harry’s bass playing, all their compositions, their shows and the way they are. We are all fans of Maiden, Judas Priest, Helloween, Saxon, Dio…! For some of us, Pantera and many more…!

What first got you into music?

My parents love music, especially my father who is a fan of classic music and they gave me the taste for it. When I was a teenager, I had a friend who was listening to heavy metal bands like Iron Maiden, Judas Priest etc. And I loved it as soon as I heard the first notes!

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

We have already played with Blaze Bayley who is one of our very special guests on the new album and Paul Di’Anno. It should be logical now for us to work with Bruce Dickinson, don’t you think? 😉
If we could work with Iron Maiden, I would be the happiest bass player in the world… Who knows?
And personally, I would love to collaborate with Accept to!

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Perhaps Wacken Open Air Festival, because for me it’s one of the most important Metal Festivals. It’s like a symbol of this kind of music!

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

A pair of socks! 😉

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Thank you very much for your support and for believing in the BLACK HORIZON music.
Be a little patient, our album release is on May 17th with “Pure Steel Publishing” and you will be able to find it everywhere, to listen to us on all the musical platforms.
But the main thing is that you stay all faithful as usual.
We love you and stay in touch.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

I think Bon Scott because he died young and I really think that he could have done great things with AC/DC!

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

What I like most is when I feel that I share emotions with the audience and the band during concerts.
What is annoying me the most is to have lots of ideas for new songs at night and not to remember them when I wake up! ;-(

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

You ask me to think like a business man… that I’m not!! I really don’t know what to do to make it work better but I’m sure that the music industry is following a bad way to encourage creativity by always promoting main stream productions and not simply good musical taste… Which is not objective, I admit but I think you know what I mean, you always hear the same kind of music on radio (at least, this is it in France).
So, perhaps establishing parity on funds allocated on different kinds of music… When it’s not private funds… but it’s nearly always private funds designed to make money…Mmmm! Ok, next question! 😉

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

It’s a very difficult question…
I love albums like “Piece Of Mind” from Iron Maiden, or “Dark Ride” from Helloween, or “Resurrection” from Rob Halford!

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or downloads?

I love vinyl because of the artwork. Pictures are very important for most metal bands!

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

For me, one of our best gigs was during the race of the 24 hours of Spa Francorchamps (Belgium). It was one of our biggest ever and we played one hour and a half in front of bikers. I’m fond of motorbikes since ever, so to associate two of my passions at the same time was really amazing!

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

I would be a race motorcycle pilot…!

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Dan Simmons (The writer of “Hyperion”), The Dalai Lama, Steve Harris, Rob Halford and Tobias Sammet 🙂

What’s next for the band?

We release our album “Dark Light” on May 17th via Pure Steel Publishing.
We prepare our tour. Most of the dates will be programmed from September.
We are working on 2 videos and on new songs also… Keep in touch!

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

Most of the time, we use Facebook to communicate. You can find us on all classic platforms, Spotify, Deezer, Youtube and our new website www.blackhorizon.fr is currently under construction!
https://www.facebook.com/BLACK-HORIZON-OFFICIEL-FRANCE-242782372398831/
https://open.spotify.com/artist/0K4EsbpZuG2IW0janEXBAD

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

A biscuit made of cake 😉

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Thank you for your questions, long live “Ever Metal Questions” and heavy metal Music, can’t wait to share our new Album “Dark Light” on stage with all our fans all over the world.
Keep on Rockin’
Dom Crispino Bass on BLACK HORIZON

 

Black Horizon Pic Bottom

 

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of 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’
4/10

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.

TRACKLISTING:
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.)

LINE-UP:
Jody Turner – Lead Guitar & Lead Vocals
Julie Turner – Drums & Backing vocals
Jenny Lane – Bass Guitar & Backing vocals

LINKS:
http://www.rockgoddessoffical.co.uk/
https://www.facebook.com/Rockgoddessrocks/

https://www.instagram.com/rockgoddessofficial/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCy85kAGbB_y-vFWTUxU9Q-A

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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.

Powderhead – Don’t Let Them Win

Don_t Let Them Win Cover

Powderhead – Don’t Let Them Win
Self-Released
Running Time: 40:10
Release Date: 14/04/2018
Review by Paul Monkhouse
7/10

One of the great things about writing for a site like this very one is that we absolutely love supporting the many underground bands in the country alongside the many established bands. It’s seems as though every week a new talent pops up and is ready and raring to compete with the big boys. Far from rock being dead (as some naysayers have it) I believe that the scene has some incredible bands coming through. Sure, things have changed seismically over the past few years but that hasn’t stopped the hungry young guns hitting their local pubs, clubs and festivals forging a name for themselves the hard way. Every town in the country has some incredible new artists absolutely ripping it up on the live scene and vying for that one big breakthrough. Social media might have killed record sales as they were known but it’s such a force for good as by the click of a mouse you can discover amazing talent on your own doorstep. Such is the case with Powderhead…

Formed in Cambridge, Powderhead have just released their first album “Don’t Let Them Win” and it’s a rough-edged gem full of snotty attitude and firey riffs. Reminding me of some of the more D.I.Y. releases of the NWOBHM (but with better production) it snaps and snarls through ten tracks of hard rock that is given a bit of a punk feel by lead singer Helen Johnson. Like the brilliant Pearler, here is another band that has a very ‘street’ feel to it that takes the best elements of primal hard rock and mixes with it with a real swagger.

Opening track ‘Mad Phil’ sets out their intent from the off with its punk feel that changes just before the chorus as it throws into the mix some classic rock guitar that has a touch of Metallica. The sinewy twists in the tracks are a thread that runs through the album as each track throws in the odd tempo change which shows more of a freewheeling style of writing rather than a contrived attempt to do something different. Admittedly some of the little turns don’t pay off in the way they should, particularly in a couple of the chorus’s where it tends to lean heavily of melodies that are meant to catch the ear but rather seem a little out of place but it’s a small criticism. ‘Take It’ starts off with a hook laden chant before ripping into some furious fretwork accompanied by a banshee scream as it charges into a confrontational statement that takes no prisoners.

Much of the album features some terrific hard rock that takes elements from the 80’s and 90’s bands like Saxon, Pantera and Megadeth and injects it with the venom of 70’s punk. It’s not all fury though as one of the outstanding tracks happens half way through the album giving a real change of pace in ‘Forgotten Line’, the album’s sole ballad. Far from being something that is thrown in just for the sake of it, the track is a welcome change from the full-on tempos and adds some real colour to the CD. Not only does it really let Helen’s vocals shine but contains an epic and soaring guitar solo by Jack Lawson.

The album finishes in fine style with the real ‘one two punch’ of ‘Kick and Scream’ and ‘The Butcher’ that are powered by some sterling work on the drums and bass topped by some more vicious fretwork and grab you by the throat vocals. As a debut it’s not perfect but time will mean the band continue to grow in their song writing and arranging skills, adding more razor-sharp edges to their material as indicated by what is an impressive full-length debut.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Mad Phil
02. Take It or Leave It
03. Cut it Loose
04. Super-Sized Stoner
05. Toxicate
06. Forgotten Line
07. Sycophant
08. Wrapped
09. Kick and Scream
10. The Butcher

LINKS:
https://www.facebook.com/pg/powderheadband

https://www.instagram.com/powderheadband/
https://powderhead.bandcamp.com/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCGzKELbhkUMSem1KmsPk6BQ

 

Powderhead Promo Pic

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.