Praying Mantis – Gravity

Gravity Cover

Praying Mantis – Gravity
Frontiers Music
Running Time: 58:00
Release Date: 11/05/2018
Review by Chris White
5/10

Praying Mantis are, by all accounts (ok, their PR Company’s account), one of the most influential bands from the NWOBHM period! I’m geared up for tight leather trousers, warbling vocals and twin guitar harmonies, colliding with big, thunderous bass riffs.

This record is also featuring a new vocalist and drummer in conjunction with the original members, so it seems that the band have achieved a good level of momentum since their last release in 2015.

In kicks the first song, ‘Keep It Alive’ and all is not going to plan. Heavy layered vocal harmonies guide us into a forgettable verse and an improved chorus that at least has a slightly catchy feel to it. My first impression is that the singer is trying too hard to outperform Graham Bonnet in the ‘louder and higher’ singing repertoire, but at least he sounds like he is having fun.

The second track, ‘Mantis Anthem’, features a retro Bontempi-sounding intro and as things go on, I wonder if this is more AOR than NWOBHM? It sounds a bit desperate as it goes on. Anthems are about waving that lighter in the air at the live gig, but I fear that if you were waving a cigarette lighter in the crowd to this song, you would most likely suffer narcolepsy and accidentally set fire to yourself.

Without wishing to dissect each song individually from here on in, my notes contain phrases such as ‘a bit like a testicle-equipped version of Vixen without the Richard Marx songs’, ‘plods along a bit’ and ‘acoustic guitar with yet more full-on helium fuelled singing’.

Finally, the album finished with the song ‘Final Destination’, complete with a wailed “dessssssteena-shunnnnnnnn” outburst from the vocalist, as if to prove a point. The point was clearly that after 5 minutes 16 seconds, it made me wish I was heading towards my final destination as well.

TRACKLISTING:
01 Keep It Alive
02 Mantis Anthem
03 Time Can Heal
04 39 Years
05 Gravity
06 Ghosts Of The Past
07 Destiny In Motion
08 The Last Summer
09 Foreign Affair
10 Shadow Of Love
11 Final Destination

LINKS:
http://www.prayingmantis.rocks/
https://www.facebook.com/PrayingMantisUKRockMetal/

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC9mgPe1jTBoyfVZs2wRidsQ

 

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris White 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.

Satan – Cruel Magic

 

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Satan – Cruel Magic
Metal Blade Records
Release Date: 07/09/2018
Running Time: 49:42
Review by Chris Galea
10/10

With a debut album released back in 1983, it was only after Satan’s 2011 reunion that the quintet started becoming relatively prolific as a recording band. Truth be told, Satan have been fairly consistent in the quality of their material, a fact complemented by a reputation for impressive live shows. With this “Cruel Magic”, the band notches 5 albums and therein lies the band’s dilemma: how do they retain the style that has gained them fame and admiration while not stagnating?

For a start the band has gone for a rawer, more ‘live’ sound. Regarding this aspiration, I read somewhere that in the recording studio they tried to resist the temptation to make too many takes, even if that meant leaving individual mistakes in the final product. And I have to say that’s certainly the impression I got from listening to the album. Rather than put me off, this approach was a masterstroke – it somehow gives the songs more appeal, makes them feel more genuine, more intuitive.

But the biggest achievement of “Cruel Magic” is that none of the songs feel boring and yet you know that they can only come from Satan. This is all down to the excellence of the songwriting. The riffs and vocals phrasings of ‘Into The Mouth of Eternity’ remind us that Metallica were one of the many bands influenced by Satan. ‘Ophidian’ is destined to be a classic in Satan’s repertoire. Besides having some blistering guitar solos ‘Legions Hellbound’ is notable for the smooth way the songs shifts from/to mellow and heavy parts.

I loved the guitar harmonies of ‘The Doomsday Clock’, a song about impending doom. ‘Ghosts Of Monongah’ is about the West Virginia mining tragedy of 1907 while in ‘Who Among Us’ Satan rise to the defence of Jesus Christ’s messages. You can see that even thematically, “Cruel Magic” is diverse, even though the songs seem to have a common thread of a foreboding doom. Suitably enough, the album ends with ‘Mortality’, a song where Satan play around with atmospheres and guitar sounds with interesting results.

Spot-on drumming, great melodies, inspired guitar solos, excellent songwriting….what more can one hope for? This is an album that I am liking more and more with each listen.

I’m generally hesitant to give full marks ratings but “Cruel Magic” is the archetype of all that is great about Heavy Metal.

TRACKLISTING:
1. Into The Mouth of Eternity
2. Cruel Magic
3. The Doomsday Clock
4. Legions Hellbound
5. Ophidian
6. My Prophetic Soul
7. Death Knell For A King
8. Who Among Us
9. Ghosts Of Monongah
10. Mortality

LINE-UP:
Brian Ross – vocals
Russ Tippins – guitars
Steve Ramsey – guitars
Graeme English – bass
Sean Taylor – drums

LINKS:
http://www.satanmusic.com/
https://www.facebook.com/officialsatanpage

https://satanuk.bandcamp.com
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UuLTFfi-peM ‘The Doomsday Clock’ (Official Video)

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Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea 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.

Airforce, The Cart & Horses, London, 27/10/2018

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Airforce
The Cart & Horses, London
27th October, 2018
Review and Pictures by Chris Galea

I’m sure that, to some degree, the symbolic meaning of tonight’s gig fuelled the pervasive fervor. And that symbolic meaning had something to do with Iron Maiden.

Doug Sampson, drummer of Airforce, performed with Iron Maiden at the ‘Cart & Horses’ at a time when that band was starting to assert its dominance over the Metal scene. Here was where Iron Maiden played their very first gigs, something that was probably convenient for Steve Harris as he lived just up the road from here. Besides that, Iron Maiden used to rehearse about 5 minutes’ drive from this pub. Chop Pitman and Tony Hatton, respectively Airforce’s guitarist and bassist, remember the first Maiden gig well as they were there (or should I say ‘here’).

This area of NE London is also home of the West Ham football team (from whom Iron Maiden adopted the ‘Up The Hammers’ battlecry). Tonight West Ham were playing away – this meant the ‘Cart & Horses’ was already thronging with punters by the time Airforce started assembling their gear. The fact that this was Halloween night added a further element of fun to the ambience with many attendees dressed in gory costumes and fake blood (yes, there was also someone dressed as Eddie, Iron Maiden’s mascot).

That might have been a long-winded way to put tonight’s show in context but it hopefully helped you, the reader, seep in the atmosphere before the air-raid siren sounded and Airforce finally hit the stage…..

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All the four band members wasted no time in immersing themselves into the performance, especially bass player Tony Hatton. On lead vocals was Italian national Ivan Giannini, who has joined Airforce only recently. Previous singer Dilian Arnaudov had to return to his native Bulgaria due to personal matters. Ivan proved to be an incredibly good singer with a phenomenal set of pipes.

On the subject of singers, Dilian’s singing with Airforce is rougher around the edges whereas Ivan’s voice is much more melodic. So for better or for worse, Airforce’s music changes depending on who of the two is singing. At this juncture the band needs to decide which of the two roads to take. But I’ve digressed…

Mid-way through the set Chop started a song with a riff that made me think he was ripping off Accept’s ‘Princess Of The Dawn’. After a few moments, I told myself, “Hold on, this IS ‘Princess Of The Dawn!”. A surprising choice of song to cover but, if I may speculate, perhaps we can take it as an indication of what sound Airforce is going for. That’s a heartening thought. An even odder cover was ‘Eleanor Rigby’ of The Beatles. But luckily both Accept and The Beatles are bands I love so I wasn’t one to complain.

Most of the original songs performed I was hearing for the first time. And what I heard were songs that were lively, mean-spirited and exciting and to be honest I enjoyed them all. Judging from the crowd’s involvement, ‘Finest Hour’ and ‘Sniper’ went down particularly well, in part thanks to the video clips of those songs that were released recently. ‘Life Turns To Dust’ – a catchy mid-tempo song with some cool melodies – also found its way into the set. ‘The Reaper’ was a new song and one which I immediately took a liking to. Finally the band rounded off their triumphant performance with a cover of Judas Priest’s ‘Breaking The Law’.

Special credit must go to Ivan for learning the Airforce songs at very short notice. He hardly spoke except of course to sing and most of the crowd banter was left to Chop. That was perfectly understandable but still I think it would have looked better if the Italian were more loquacious.

From the currently active musicians with roots in the NWOBHM, Airforce are one of the bands I am liking most these days – they seem to be one of the few bands of the NWOBHM generation that I feel are coming up with quality material that hasn’t mellowed too much with time. On top of that, as evidenced by tonight’s performance, the delivery of that material is dynamic and convincing.

So although the band’s future is not yet written in stone, tonight I sensed some very promising signs. The diversely composed audience of the ‘Cart & Horses’ would probably second me on that.

Setlist:
Fight
Life Turns To Dust
War Games
Fine Line
The Reaper
Heroes
Son Of The Damned
Faith Healer/Princess Of The Dawn
Lost Forever
Finest Hour
Band Of Brothers
Why Has It Come To This?
Sniper
Eleanor Rigby
We Wanna Rock
Breaking The Law

Links:
https://www.airforceuk.co.uk/
https://www.facebook.com/chop.airforce/
https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=1&v=TN01fGFRnF4 (‘Sniper’ Official Video)

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Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea 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/

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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.

 

Interview with Desolation Angels

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Desolation Angels were one of the forefathers of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal era. Now, nearly forty years later, they are still rocking and I, recently, had the chance to interview them.

Hi, I’m Dawn from Ever Metal. Thank you for taking the time to talk to us and I hope you are all ok?

Hi Dawn, yes we are all ok thanks.

Ok, so for those who have been hiding in a remote cave somewhere for the past thirty odd years, can you give us a quick background of the band?

Desolation Angels was formed in early 1981 by childhood friends Robin Brancher and Keith Sharp based in the East End of London. The band started writing and rehearsing and soon built up a reputation playing live.

The band’s first single, ‘Valhalla’, was recorded at a studio in Cheltenham in 1982 and, by this time, the band was touring extensively the UK. In 1984, their debut self titled album ‘Desolation Angels’ was recorded at Thameside Studios, London

After spending eight years in the USA playing live shows and recording, the band returned to the UK.

* After various personnel changes since the reformation of Desolation Angels in 2012, the band members are: Robin Brancher (guitar), Keith Sharp (guitar), Clive Pearson (bass), Chris Takka (drums) Paul Taylor (vocals).

Answered Clive Pearson

So, your latest album “King” (great name by the way!) was released on February 23rd of this year (2018), how is it being received? I see you have had some great reviews.

The name seems to have been a good choice, well done to Rob on that one….. it needs to be mentioned first that we were so fortunate to have Chris Tsangeridies listen to the demos and see the potential in the songs to agree to give us his time to make this album so special in so many ways. It so tragic that this was to be his final gift to the music world as he certainly took this on to ensure he handed over a fantastic album. He brought out the best in DA AND we will be ever thankful to his dedication to produce and engineer these songs which the ‘reviews tell it all. The enjoyment of working with Chris and hearing all his tales of his past were very entertaining when recording can be such a stressful experience. He put the fun and enjoyment into those weeks of hard work…. the album is selling very well and so it should as it is one of those albums that gets better each time you listen to it. That is down to the song writing and the great man CT…. thanks Chris may you RIP in Valhalla with your great friend Gary Moore.

Answered by Clive Pearson.

And how was it working with the late, great Chris Tsangeridis?

I may have answered that in previous question.

He was a true musician who loved working in the industry and to help those musicians around him. His history speaks for itself and no air of greatness within his personality which could really have been the case. He’d work with anyone who had desire and commitment to their music… see his autobiography as it would take the whole Metal Nation edition to cover his character and albums.

Answered by Clive Pearson.

The official launch party for the album was on March 23rd at The Devonshire Arms in Camden. I was gutted I couldn’t get there. How did it go? Lots of drunkenness and shenanigans?

The Dev is a perfect venue for this event as it is a true metal pub in Camden which is one of the most diverse towns in London. Great atmosphere and punters. I think my other half should cover the drunken shenanigans as she won that one hands down. I give you her number and the Premier Inn in London where she was carried to after the gig and made a grand entrance…….. I am sure they can fill you in on that one… lots of punters were up for a big night and it did not disappoint.

Answered by Clive Pearson.

So, you are happy with the line up now?

It’s not just a line up it’s a big family with all the wives and girlfriends part of the group.

Answered by Paul Chatfield

I checked out your latest tour dates on your website and I see you are doing a lot of double headers with another great band Sacrilege (and some with support from Satan’s Empire). What’s is like working with those guys? They are all a great bunch.

They are all a great bunch. We have got a few under our belts already and the one that stands out was at the Underworld in Camden … I seem to get on well in Camden……… Sacrilege are a real good time rock and roll party animals that enjoy themselves on and off stage. We are also pretty much the same age so got a lot of those old days to catch up on and reminisce about. Satan’s Empire have a new album out and sure deliver live. I know Paul Lewis from when he was in Belladonna so cool to be gigging with them now..
Look forward to the next ones coming up…

Answered by Clive Pearson.

And you have the NWOBHM GDR #3 in Nuneaton in November. Are you looking forward to that? It’s a shame it’s not in London again though.

We played the first one in London and good to see it gathering pace a few years now. Great to have Tokyo Blade, Tysondog on the bill plus The Deep & Airforce. We all gigging regularly over the years so will be a big party.

Tokyo Blade will be the 2nd time we shared the stage who are good friends with Rob and Keith so good times will be had…

You play in Europe a lot. Do you think your music is better received there and do you prefer playing there or on home soil?

We really enjoy playing in Europe, the fans seem more dedicated, they know the material and really appreciate the fact you come over. I suppose we were a bit spoilt for choice in the UK. There is, and has always been loads of great bands evolved here through the years so fans have a massive choice. Don’t get me wrong it’s fantastic to play to a great crowd in the UK but the European crowds seem to let their hair down a bit more and really rock out.

Answered by Paul Taylor

I am the first to admit that I am not the biggest fan of NWOBHM (yet here I am interviewing one of the original bands from the era!) and I must say I prefer the last album to the earlier stuff. What have you done that has changed your sound so that even a NWOBHM-disliker like me loved your album?

The NWOBHM label is just that, a label! It was just a way to remarket what had always been there, good old-fashioned rock bands. All the radio stations just played either disco music or punk. Purple, Sabbath, UFO, Uriah Heep, Wishbone Ash, Budgie, Lizzy and Priest were still all there and they inspired us, younger bands. So it could be that you like the King album because we’re now better at producing great rock albums than we were 30 years ago . The original values of the music are the same as they’ve always been, strong powerful guitar riffs with a solid rhythm section and melodic vocal tunes with interesting lyrics. We chose Chris T to produce the album because of his fantastic track record and his love of great rock music. He loved the album and did a brilliant job. It would seem that we’ve done what we intended to do, make an album traditional NWOBHM fans would like but also cross the boundaries in to the established hard rock fan base who would normally dismiss NWOBHM bands because of the label.

Answered by Paul Taylor

Ok, so I am friends with most, if not all of you, on social media of some sort, whether it’s Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and I have seen you “in the flesh” so to speak. You are all a great bunch of guys and I would love to interview you face to face after a gig at some point! Would this be ok with you guys?

For sure we always happy to give interviews and answer question for readers on Skype or phone.
Or come backstage after gig and we can have few beers and chat..

So, what’s next for Desolation Angels?

Keep on gigging for as long as we can and record the next album.

Answered by Paul Chatfield

Well, thank you so much for your time. I look forward to seeing you on the road and maybe we can get that interview squeezed in. Is there anything you would like to add?

Thanks for asking us to do this interview spread the word www.desolationangels.co.uk

 

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

Satan’s Empire – Rising

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SATAN’S EMPIRE – RISING
3M’s Music
Release Date: 25/05/2018
Running Time: 52:07
Review by Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King
9/10

So, here I am again, with yet another NWOBHM album to review. Not bad for someone who is not really a fan of the genre, eh? But, that’s the beauty of reviewing. There is always something to review that is out of your comfort zone.

So, Satan’s Empire? Hmmmm, a band originally founded in Dundee, Scotland during the NWOBHM years of the late 70’s / early 80’s, there is surprisingly little information about them on the internet. They were most known for their song “Soldiers of War” which featured on the “Leadweight” compilation album for Neat Records and this gained them an almost mythical status.

After a thirty-year hiatus, they reformed in 2015 with the original London line up, consisting of Paul Lewis on guitar, Wayne Hudson on bass, Derek Lyon on vocals, Sandy McRitchie also on guitar and Magpie (Gary Bowler) on drums, releasing their first EP in 2017, and this, their first full-length album, released on 15th June 2018.

Over thirty years is a long time to wait for a band’s debut album so was it worth the wait?

I would say a resounding YES!

This is not just a NWOBHM album, it is a stonking modern day heavy metal album. Each track stands out by itself and there really are no fillers. Some could consider it a bit cliched with track names like “Slaves of Satan”, “Shout it Out (Hail!)” and “Dragon Slayer” but this in no way takes away from the musicianship and talent that has gone into producing this album.

The biggest compliment I think I can give this album is that it reminded me very much of a Saxon album, and a good Saxon album at that. I don’t know whether they have drawn influence from the Barnsley band or whether this was a total coincidence, but, in my opinion, it worked very well.

Satan’s Empire are a band that perform regularly at venues near me (always on a bloody Sunday when I can never make it I might add though!) but I was lucky enough to see them at The Roundhouse in Dagenham when they supported Alan Davey’s Ace of Spades and that was when I realised they are actually a really good band. They were excellent in a live setting and the energy and enthusiasm they had on that stage has transferred effortlessly to the cd.

I, for one, hope to see them many more times live, and I also hope they continue to make the music they are doing now and make many more great albums.

You never know I might actually become a NWOBHM fan because of it 😊

 

TRACK LISTING

  • Slaves of Satan
  • Shout it Out (Hail)
  • Satan’s Empire
  • Soldiers of War
  • Dragon Slayer
  • Come Back
  • On the Road to Hell
  • Lucifer
  • Politician
  • Suicide Man

 

SOCIAL MEDIA

  • https://en-gb.facebook.com/SatansEmpireOfficial/
  • https://twitter.com/empiresatan?lang=en

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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 do adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

 

The Deep – Premonition

Premonition Cover

THE DEEP – PREMONITION
Independent
Release Date: March 2015
Running Time 53:37
Review by Rick Tilley
10/10

This review was first published in 2015 and is reprinted here courtesy of Brutiful Metal Radio

When vocalist Tony Coldham kindly sent me The Deep’s four track demo last year I immediately knew we were in for something special! Tony has now very kindly sent me an un-mastered copy of ‘Premonition’, the band’s debut album, due in March 2015 and if the demo whetted your appetite then this is going to absolutely knock you for six and remember I’m listening to an unfinished version!

Some members of The Deep have been around the music business since the early 1980’s, and have been part of Airrace and Rogue Male, amongst other bands. It’s fair to say that between them they have a rich heritage but if you don’t believe me then listening to ‘Premonition’ will be the only evidence you need! The Deep’s sound is rooted between Classic Hard & Heavy Rock, Melodic Rock and NWOBHM so think Saxon meets UFO and Uriah Heep and this album has given me goose bumps in places I didn’t know you could get them!

First and foremost is Tony Coldham’s voice which is utterly outstanding, reminiscent of one of my favourite vocalists Bernie Shaw (Uriah Heep, Grand Prix, Praying Mantis). Tony’s singing is the centrepiece of The Deep, power and emotion ring out in equal fashion and he absolutely destroys many modern day ‘singers’, but as I said in my review of the demo, that in no way takes anything away from the rest of the band who are all utterly superb. Paul Smith and Mick Feleppa’ guitar work & backing vocals are fabulous. Riffs and solos fly with abandon, whether the song is heavier or more ballad driven (The Deep are extremely good at mixing things up) and bassist Don Whiberley along with drummer Steve Kingsley have become a very solid and entertaining rhythm team!

Being in a superb band doesn’t just mean having good musicians though. You all know as well as I do that what matters most are the songs themselves and ‘Premonition’ is packed to the rafters with good songs. All four tracks from the demo are present and correct but the six new tracks showcased here are equally as good and it feels like the album has been sequenced perfectly, something a lot of bands don’t bother with now in the downloading era! From the opening Saxon like riff of ‘The Rider’ through to closer ‘Turn Me Loose’ this is 100% quality and I’m privileged to be one of the first to here it! Highlight moment for me currently, and it’ll probably change, is ‘Saga’. One of the quieter tracks but it’s near seven minutes of perfection and is just magnificent!

It’s only the middle of January and to receive an album of this magnitude so early on in 2015 is really quite something special. Even though there will be other bands that get given more column space this year I will be shouting The Deep’s name from the rooftops until you all get fed up with me because this band is too good to ignore and ‘Premonition’ is a must have for any lover of Classic Rock & Metal’. I’ll be damned if I know what this album will sound like when it’s actually completed because I honestly don’t think the band can make it any better!

 

TRACKLIST

  • 01. The Rider
  • 02. You Take My Breath Away
  • 03. Night-Stalker
  • 04. Cold-Hearted
  • 05. All I Want
  • 06. Out Of Touch
  • 07. Premonition
  • 08. Spell-bound
  • 09. Saga
  • 10. Turn Me Loose

 

Social Media

  • http://www.thedeepband.co.uk/
  • https://www.facebook.com/TheDeepUK/

Cover Artwork

  • http://cadiesart.com/home

 

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Richard Tilley and Ever Metal.  It is strictly forbidden to reproduce and part of this review, unless you have the explicit permission of both parties; failure to comply will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Reproduced with the kind permission of Brutiful Metal Radio

Kaine – A Crisis of Faith

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KAINE
A CRISIS OF FAITH
SELF RELEASED
8 out of 10
Review by Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King

When I hear the name Kaine, I always think of them as a new band just starting out, full of young guys wanting to make their mark on the metal scene. Now, while the “wanting to make their mark” bit is true, the band, itself, has been around since 2009.

Hailing from East Anglia, Kaine is a four-piece set up with influences from bands such as Iron Maiden and Saxon, which they have mixed with the thrash element I so love and have produced a fresh take on an older genre. Their site states they “combine traditional / NWOBHM with thrash / speed metal” and, despite not being the biggest NWOBHM fan, as you will have come to know by now, this is a combination that I have grown to love.

So, for those of you who don’t know much about the band, and if you don’t where have you been for the past nine years, let me tell you of some of their achievements so far.

They have supported some of the biggest names in current heavy metal, such as Alestorm, Evil Scarecrow, Savage Messiah, I-AM-I (which features ex-Dragonforce and current Skid Row singer ZP Theart), The Wild Lies and Absolva (a band that features members of Iced Earth!) and they have also shared the stage with legends such as Diamond Head, Praying Mantis, Tygers of Pan-Tang, Grave Digger, Holocaust, Lawnmower Deth, Annihilated, Tytan (ex-Angel Witch) and Onslaught.

On top of this, they were also voted GMA Breakthrough UK band of 2013 and in 2017, the band’s website was recognised as the 87th top metal blog in the world by Feedspot.

So, what does this band have to offer? Well, in my opinion, absolutely everything! With four fantastic musicians, excellent song writing abilities and a work ethic that’s second to none, this band should be bigger than what they are!

A Crisis of Faith is the band’s third album, officially released on February 1st, 2018, and having reviewed the previous one, The Waystone, I can see how they have grown as a band. I stated in my review then that they had “taken a great, big pot, thrown in some traditional heavy metal and a handful of NWOBHM, while adding a bit of thrash and a pinch of prog.” This album takes it all to the next level and feels a lot more ‘proggy’ to me than the last. This, however, doesn’t take away from the heavy crunching riffs and pounding drums that are still present, but it does show just what this bunch of guys can do.

I have always been an admirer of vocals that stand out from the rest, because let’s face it, who wants to listen to a band whose singer sounds just like any other band? And that, for me, is one of the things that makes this band a bit different to the rest. Rage Sadler’s vocals are somewhat quirky and will maybe not appeal to everyone, but I think they add character to the band. And he can actually sing, a trait that not too many bands deem important these days!

The other thing that stood out on this album for me was the bass playing. Being mum to a budding bass player I am starting to notice the bass lines in songs more and more now but the playing on this album just blew me away. I have seen Kaine live a few times with Stephen Ellis on bass now and he is simply a phenomenon.  I never knew bass player’s fingers could move so fast! And with Saxon Davids on guitar (what a player!) and Chris MacKinnon on drums (and a lot of other stuff!! Versatility, now that’s the name of the game) these guys are everything a band should be!

Stand out songs for me were Fall of Jericho (check out the bass!) which I think is a favourite among a lot of other fans too, and Alone (In My Forgotten Rage) although I don’t think there is a bad song on the album.

I know that the music of Kaine doesn’t appeal to everyone, but I think they have been overlooked by a lot of people. They work extremely hard and endure personal hardships to do what they do, and, for this, I think they should be applauded. If you give just one unsigned band you may have discounted a listen, then let it be this band!

Get yourself a copy of A Crisis of Faith (and at just a couple of quid they are a steal) and see for yourself!

 

Note: Since the recording of this album, drummer Chris Mackinnon has announced he is leaving the band. While this is a mighty blow for the band, here at Ever Metal we appreciate Chris has his own reasons for doing this. We would like to wish him all the very best for his future musical endeavours and hope he achieves what he is looking for.

We would also like to wish incoming replacement Liam Etheridge the best of luck with Kaine and look forward to many more years of music from a great bunch of guys.

On the 3rd May 2018, it was also announced that guitarist, Saxon Davids and bassist Stephen Ellis, were also leaving the band. We at Ever Metal would like to wish them both the very best in what they choose to do and we also hope Rage Sadler can salvage the band and come back bigger than ever!

 

TRACK LISTING

  • 1 Heaven’s Abandonment
  • 2 Fall of Jericho
  • 3 A Night Meets Death
  • 4 Crisis of Faith
  • 5 Afterlife
  • 6 Frailty of the Blade
  • 7 Voice in Hell
  • 8 Behind the Preacher’s Eyes
  • 9 The Mind is Willing
  • 10 Alone (In My Forgotten Rage)

 

SOCIAL MEDIA

  • https://kaine-metal.com/
  • https://kaine.bandcamp.com/
  • https://en-gb.facebook.com/kaineband/
  • https://www.instagram.com/kaineband/

 

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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 do adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Rock Goddess – It’s More Than Rock and Roll EP

It's More Than Rock And Roll EP Cover

Rock Goddess – It’s More Than Rock And Roll EP
Running Time: 13:27
Release Date: 19/05/2017
Bite You To Death Records
Review by Beth Jones
5/10

Here’s where I make some of you feel old! Rock Goddess where originally formed in 1977, two years before I was born, and had success in the 80’s as part of the NWOBHM movement. Hailing from London, sisters Jodie and Julie Turner, and their friend Tracey Lamb, became a three piece with a good cult following. The band had a decade of success, before life got in the way and they disbanded. They gave it a couple more shots in the 90’s and 2000’s, but it didn’t amount to much, however the fans were desperate for them to all come back together as the original line up, which finally happened in 2013. Since then, fans have been waiting with bated breath for the appearance of their new album.

Well… they haven’t quite got that far yet, but in March 2017 they did give us this 3 track EP! It’s a start!

Now, the press release for this says, ‘If you are nestling down for a comfortable trip into the borough of Nostalgia, South London, then you had better prepare to have that notion scrambled’, however, I couldn’t disagree more. If you are a fan of classic 80’s nostalgic Rock, then this is the EP for you! If music was an outfit, this would have more tassels, leather, and spandex than Alice Cooper’s wardrobe!! It is laden with solid, chunky, headbanging riffs, tonnes of overdrive, and classic Rock vocal harmonies, which makes it straightforward listening – there are no hidden meanings, no interesting little twiddles that you weren’t expecting – just good, salt of the earth, meat and two veg, ROCK! And for me, there is absolutely nothing wrong with that, and to be brutally honest, making it ‘current’ would have totally missed the point and spoiled it in my eyes! If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!

The EP kicks off with ‘It’s More Than Rock And Roll’. Maybe it is if you look at is symbolically, on a Tuesday, whilst leaning slightly to one side, and eating blue Smarties, but to me it isn’t anything more than Rock & Roll! A catchy repetitive hook draws the song along, with a very distinct Verse, Chorus, Verse, Chorus, Middle 8, Solo, Chorus X2 formula which means you can toe-tap and sing along instantly, and it doesn’t outstay its welcome. My biggest criticism of this track is the production – things don’t seem to sit right in it for me – the guitar and vocals are too far back, the bass guitar and snare too far forwards and it’s all a bit muddy. I have listened to it on a couple of different devices and have still drawn the same conclusion. Maybe this is how the band wanted it to sound, maybe I am missing some deep symbolic meaning signifying the struggle through the mud of the music industry, and life, and how sometimes things can’t always be at the forefront of our minds……But for me it just sounds not quite as balanced as I would have liked. I am a simple girl, with simple tastes and this track didn’t entirely wet my appetite.

The second track, ‘Back Off’, is better. Crisper, cleaner sounding, and in general a better song, whilst still just being straightforward. The vocals are more raw (or roarrr!!, whichever way you want to look at it!) but it works – it still has the trademark harmonies, and over-driven guitar riffs, however the solo is more impressive than the first track, and the rhythm changes and use of more dynamics make it a bit more exciting. It is more lyrically substantial than the first track, which makes a big difference. For me, the best of the three tracks by a good margin.

Track three, ‘We’re All Metal’, is back to the classic rock solid anthem. Chunky, down-tuned and dare I say a bit predictable – nothing wrong with that – it does exactly what it says on the tin. The fact it fades out at the end (which you will soon come to learn is one of my biggest bug bears) ​is a disappointment and takes away from what is a pretty good song and leaves you a bit non-plus– it’s just lazy – please for the love of music, work out a way to finish the song!

All in all, this EP is…..OK. It is a bit like your comfy knickers – when you wear them, you know exactly what to expect, and they make you feel secure, but you wouldn’t wear them on a hot date! If you prefer comfy knickers to a crotchless thong, then you will feel safe with this EP! I can’t say I didn’t enjoy it, because I did, but it didn’t blow me away. However, it is nice to see the ladies back and still kicking it like the good old days!

 

TRACK LIST

It’s More Than Rock And Roll
Back Off
We’re All Metal
SOCIAL MEDIA

  • https://www.facebook.com/Rockgoddessrocks/
  • https://www.deezer.com/en/artist/124657?autoplay=true
  • https://tunein.com/artist/Rock-Goddess-m239192/?autoplay=true
  • http://rockgoddess.bigcartel.com/

 

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

Desolation Angels – King

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Desolation Angels – King
Running time: 46:00
Dissonance Productions
Review by Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King
8/10

Now, I have never hidden the fact that I am not the biggest New Wave of British Heavy Metal fan, but that doesn’t mean I will shy away from reviewing it. And what better NWOBHM band to review than Desolation Angels?

Formed in 1981 in London, England, they released their self-financed first single Valhalla in 1983, by which time they had established themselves as a solid pub and club band throughout London’s East End, playing alongside other NWOBHM bands such as Chariot and Elixir. Their self-titled debut album, recorded at Thameside Studios in London, was finally released in 1984 and they earned themselves a great reputation for their potent live performances.

But the band thought their true path lay elsewhere and they relocated to Los Angeles, California soon after, spending eight years there. They returned to England in the early nineties before splitting in 1994.

The release of the Feels Like Thunder boxset in 2008 prompted original guitarists Robin Brancher and Keith Sharp to reform the band and by 2012 they were playing live again. New additions of Clive Pearson on bass and Chris Takka on drums in 2013 and the acquisition of former Elixir singer Paul Taylor on vocals in 2015 complete the current line-up.

2014 saw the release of a new EP titled Sweeter Than Meat, while their debut, self-titled album was reissued in 2016.

King (great name by the way!) is their new album, officially released on February 23rd, 2018 by Dissonance Productions. The album was produced by the late, great Chris Tsangeridis (RIP) and is a blistering return to everything that made the band so electrifying the first-time round.

I have often touched on the subject of progression in a band’s sound while writing a review, and this time will be no different. Many bands get berated for not progressing with the times, while others are criticised for doing just that. It seems the bands just cannot win whatever they do.

I sit on the fence with this one. I love to hear a band’s sound change as they progress through their career but, at the same time, I want to hear the sound that made them in the first place. Desolation Angels have maintained their sound from the NWOBHM wave in the early 80’s but have added a huge dose of contemporary aggression to their mix of classic, heavy, chorus-driven metal that will leave necks sore everywhere they go.

I saw a quote stating they were looking for “meticulous song writing, anthemic oomph, hard rock swagger and plenty of street level heavy metal grit” and I think that is exactly what they have achieved with this album. It’s a nostalgic snapshot of the early days of classic and traditional heavy metal that will leave older listeners harping back to the “good old days” while the youngers ones will wish they had been there (me included!).

I think the album gets better the further into it you get, with the second half featuring the stronger songs. Now, when I say, “the second half”, what I mean is from track number four “Rotten to the Core” (which also happens to be my favourite song on the album…. reminds me of so many people!) so really, we are talking about most of the album!!

The first single from the album “Another Turn of the Screw” is due to be released in March 23rd, the same day as the official album launch party that is taking place at The Devonshire Arms in Camden, and, although I can see why they have chosen this as the first single (appeals more to the mainstream etc etc) I would have liked to have seen “Rotten to the Core” or “Sky of Pain” but then that’s just my opinion!!!

Overall, this is a great album (over a week in my car is testament to that!) that I think all fans, old and new, of the NWOBHM sound will love and is must to add to any collection. I am not a NWOBHM fan and I loved it. A great album from a great bunch of guys!

When’s the next album out?!

 

TRACK LISTING

  • 01 – Doomsday
  • 02 – Another Turn Of The Screw
  • 03 – Devil Sent
  • 04 – Rotten To The Core
  • 05 – Your Blackened Heart
  • 06 – Find Your Life
  • 07 – Hellfire
  • 08 – Sky Of Pain
  • 09 – My Demon Inside

 

SOCIAL MEDIA

  • http://www.desolationangels.co.uk/
  • https://en-gb.facebook.com/DesolationAngels/
  • https://myspace.com/desolationangeluk

 

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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 do adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities