EMQ’s with EGOR LAPPO

Egor Lappo Logo

EMQ’s with EGOR LAPPO

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Saint Petersburg, Russia based Progressive Metal/Rock project, Egor Lappo. Huge thanks to Egor 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 Egor Lappo, I play a bit of everything, but mostly guitars, vocals and I do all the producing/mixing for my music. I never liked the idea of being in a band, cause it’s a rare thing when you don’t have a leader and everything just works out or you do have a leader and everyone is ok with the fact that their opinion may not be taken into account.

How did you come up with your band name?

I couldn’t come up with any good name that I wouldn’t be ashamed of in perspective. So, I named my project after my own name because most of my favourite musicians do it at some point of their career. Or they name it after their childhood nickname and that one wasn’t an option because it wasn’t cool.

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

Russia, Saint-Petersburg. I don’t know. The part of the reason why I like music is that it’s some form of an escapism for me. This may sound stupid, but I have a hard time finding Russian music that resonates with me and helps me to feel being ‘not there’. There are 2-3 artists from Russia I enjoy listening to. Oh, and I am originally from Kaluga, and the music scene there is the reason why I moved to a bigger city, cause there is none of it.

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

Latest release is “Make The Sun Shine More” EP, it was released in July 2020 and it’s sort of a turning point for me. My first 2 albums and this EP are very prog-metal stuff with some other genres blended in.

But my next album “Trancevoicer” (which is going to be out on March 19th) is a much more focused record. I decided to write a storyline and make it a concept album just to have some distinctive style to it and not to switch between genres and sounds way too much. (It’s one of the best albums I’ve heard so far this year – Rick)

‘The Mask of Kindness’ (Visualiser)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Chronologically: Ritchie Blackmore, Tomi Putaansuu, Alex Lifeson, James Hetfield, John Petrucci, Devin Townsend, Neal Morse, Tobias Forge, Tim Smith, Filippo Neviani.

What first got you into music?

Hearing O-Zone, Arash, Plazma on the radio all the time when I was 10. But if we are talking about heavy music – definitely Deep Purple, this was the only band I’ve been listening to since being 11-13.

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

All of the musicians that I adore are able to write/produce their own stuff with many line-up changes in their bands. So, I don’t know how I would help them. But I would like to collaborate with Sleep Party People, John Mitchell, Roine Stolt and Kyros.

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

Cruise to the Edge – there is no doubt about it.

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

They keep sending me money through Bandcamp for some reason, that’s weird…

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

Well…If you listen to my music and it resonates with you in some way – I am happy to provide some background soundtrack to your thoughts or life or whatever you are going through. No, seriously, thank you.

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

I am not sure about it, all of them. But it was very sad when Tim Smith from Cardiacs passed away last July.

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

I hate the lack of choice, because once you subconsciously devote yourself to this way of living – there is no turning back. Maybe there is and I am still in the teenage-rebel phase of my life, who knows. I enjoy feeling great once I finish writing/recording/mixing some song and, in the end, it perfectly represents what I was trying to say, that blueprint that once appeared for some reason.

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

This is a great question and I don’t know. Some people say that Spotify doesn’t pay artists enough. Well…look at how many streams U2, Lewis Capaldi and all these huge bands/artists have. And think about how much Spotify should pay them. I am not an expert, but I think charging more money for monthly subscriptions would help. Because now you pay the same amount of money in a month (and you can listen to any music non-stop for 30 days) that you’ve had to pay in 2005 for a pirated CD of some band’s discography in 128 kbps. There could be 4 songs on that CD, 15 minutes each and you would still pay the same, but now for listening to a 15-minute track you ‘pay’ the artist the same amount as if it was a 30 second track.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Nek – “Calore Umano”. The title track is the most heavenly-joyful-sounding thing I’ve ever heard.

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

For me downloads are the best, but no streaming service will replace the good old Sony Walkman for me.

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

We can skip that question; no gigs were played 😊.

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

Woodcarving.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Ian Gillan, Bono, Wheeler Walker Jr, Dean Ween, Al Jourgensen.

What’s next for the project?

I am in the process of trying to promote my new album “Trancevoicer” now. I have some ideas about the next album, but I have to second-guess them enough times before making some coherent decisions.

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

Burnt Coffee Reviews is a great website. I highly recommend you check it out.
www.burntcoffeereviews.com/

www.egorlappo.bandcamp.com/
www.facebook.com/EgorLappoMusic
www.instagram.com/egorlappo/
www.vk.com/egor_lappo
www.open.spotify.com/artist/0wLW47tB5wit7vIDggmhkU
www.youtube.com/user/EgorLappo

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Mini-cakes and I love them!

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

Yes, lately I gained some weight eating tons of 7Days croissants.

Egor Lappo Promo Pic

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

EMQ’s with KORYPHEUS

Korypheus Logo

EMQ’s with KORYPHEUS

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Kiev, Ukraine based Progressive/Alternative Metal band, Korypheus. 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?

We are Korypheus, a progressive metal/alternative metal band hailing from Kiev, est. 2016. Korypheus is a Best Ukrainian Metal Act 2020 nominee. December 2018 saw Korypheus unleash their debut album “Blessed”. The sophomore album “Over The Rainbow” was released on the 20th of November 2020 via French metal label M&O Music. Korypheus combines multiple heavy metal subgenres with a keen ear for melody and epic song structures.

Current Line-Up:
Andy Gushin – Lead Vocals
Jullian Torse – Extreme Vocals
Gennadi Sarukhanyan – Lead Guitar
Ruslan Drozd – Bass
Dmitri Kim – Drums

How did you come up with your band name?

Good question, previously we performed under the name The Freens which was the name of the school band of the lead singer. Later we decided that we had to change it and came up with the name Korypheus which means ‘conductor of the choir’ in Greek, but also ‘a person who excels in his art’. Then it just sounds good for a metal head’s ear.

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

We are based in Kiev, Ukraine. The rock scene is quite active (not during quarantine though). Some internationally acclaimed bands come from Ukraine e.g., Jinjer, Stoned Jesus etc. Korypheus have performed regularly, bringing their compositions to the live stage as well as being loved for their live covers of Black Sabbath. Korypheus have performed regularly at various venues and festivals such as MonteRay Summer Rock Fest, Power of Ukraine – 2018, Vol. 2., FriDayMare Fest, Kiev rock fests ‘Metal Bleeding’ 2019 and MonteRay Summer Fest 2019 plus many more, and have shared stages with the likes of famous Ukrainian bands: Sinoptik, Velikhan, Sunrise and Bila Vezha. Their powerful progressive-rock compositions riddled with riffs and piercing melodies in a short time have grabbed the ears and attention of music fans worldwide through relentless self-promotion and determination. Musicians who took part in the recording of the new album has previously performed in famous Ukrainian acts: Dmitri Kim, ex-Jinjer drummer, Max Oshkalo (a guitarist of Joncofy, participant of Euroblast fest), singer Jullian Torse and bass-player Ruslan Drozd – both previously with Fleshgore (participant of Wacken fest).

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

Our second album is “Over the Rainbow” (20th November 2020). We also released three live videos/lyric videos in support of the album!

‘Only Lies’

‘Dyatlov Pass’

‘Over The Rainbow’

Who have been your greatest influences?

The band has mentioned many of their influences for their music, including Gojira, Black Sabbath and Mastodon.

What first got you into music?

This five different stories for each participant, for me as lead singer Ian Gillan was the main inspiration since childhood.

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

We are currently under the spell of French monsters Gojira, so it would be our dream to collaborate with them.

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

There are two festivals that we have an eye on – Hellfest (because our label M&O Music collaborates with them) and Wacken (in March 2020 we came second in the national Wacken Metal Battle 2020).

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

No weird gifts that I can think of, sorry. Bottles of beer, whisky, pack of condoms 😊.

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

Come taste the band!

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

Jon Lord.

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

Music is a wonderful tool of human growth healing all wounds. We hate lies as is stated in our last song from the album ‘Only Lies’.

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

The lack of transparency in the ways of major labels and stream services like Spotify.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Gojira – “Magma”

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

Well, vinyl for real connoisseurs and downloads as they are handy!

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

Power of Ukraine Fest, Vol.2, 2018.

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

I am a poet; I would be a writer.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

My friends from the band.

What’s next for the band?

We plan a tour in support of a famous European rock artist. I cannot disclose her name yet.

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

www.korypheus.com/
www.facebook.com/Korypheusband
www.korypheus.bandcamp.com/
www.instagram.com/korypheus_band/
www.open.spotify.com/artist/6YemI6edDR5z4upLRdR4Zg
www.youtube.com/channel/UCDtUl1tZQk41kXKS4E9gzMw

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

They are biscuit cakes according to wiki 😊.

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

The Spectre Beneath – The New Identity Of Sidney Stone

The New Identity Of Sidney Stone Cover Art

The Spectre Beneath – The New Identity Of Sidney Stone
Self-Released
Release Date: 27/11/2020
Running Time: 60:01
Review by Simon Black
10/10

The best part of this (unpaid) job is days like this. When you listen to an album from a new band you have never heard of that absolutely ticks most of your boxes. This is actually the sophomore release for Cheshire-based The Spectre Beneath and, like 2019’s “The Downfall Of Judith King”, is a conceptual piece with a fairly dark story of criminality, shallow graves and resurrection – because in this game you just gotta love the Prog / Power concepts…

Importantly though, this is fundamentally where this album feels different. So many of the cookie-cutter variety of Progressive and Power genres (particularly those from mainland Europe) really overdo the concepts, to the point where they are clichéd and intrusive. These oft-repetitive albums go through endless contortions to fit the format and only really work if you are prepared to listen to the whole thing and embrace its underlying minutia…or more likely, you just let it go completely over your head and move on to something else. When concepts work, they don’t intrude, they are a bonus – the exemplar of which is probably Queensrÿche’s “Operation: Mindcrime”. Yes, it’s a very cleverly crafted concept album, which like the layers of an onion unpeel one at a time giving you a little more on each and every listen, yes there are musical refrains and themes that build and echo throughout but most of all the concept is a bonus, as each of the songs works on their own. This is what I see happening on “The New Identity Of Sidney Stone” and as a test I put the album on shuffle to see if I still felt as strongly about it. That would be a resounding yes.

The reason for this is some absolutely top notch song-writing and arrangements built around the two pillars of L. Lockser’s enigmatic vocals and Pete Worrall’s blistering guitar and bass work (presumably live the ‘additional’ guitar work of Vini Assis becomes a bit more fundamental). The guitar is an absolute core of the effectiveness of this band’s sound. It’s got a much dirtier guitar effect sound than is normal for Power or Progressive acts and added to this the relentless pace of the riffage which owes more to the gruelling effect you get from someone like Slayer, along with a bit of repetitive old Iron Maiden harmonisation instead of endless solos and you get close to the sense of unease this approach instils. It also works an absolute treat especially when you have a sticksman like Consta Taylor who can keep up the pace and positively delivers the master class schooling on blast beat delivery. Perhaps the most disconcerting part of this is the ambiguous Lockser’s vocals. I get the strong sense that she is not from a Metal background, as the style and phrasing owe more to Soul than the Rock end of the spectrum, although she can definitely belt it out when needed.

Fundamentally this feels like a very new and interesting band and although I can see obvious genre paths to bands like Nevermore, the sound of The Spectre Beneath is uniquely their own. The eclectic mix that makes this happen is why this is such an original and refreshing act to listen to.

‘Clockwork Heart’ (Lyric Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Clockwork Heart
02. Voice In The Static
03. Broken
04. Have You Waited For The World To Change?
05. 20 Shillings A Town
06. The Last Light In The House
07. The Criminal
08. The Funeral
09. The Premature Burial
10. The Phone Call
11. The Exhumation

LINE-UP:
L Lockser – Vocals
Pete Worrall – Guitar/Bass
Consta Taylor – Drums
Vini Assis – Additional Lead Guitar
Martin Worrall – Piano/Keyboards
Katy Lennon – Additional Vocals

LINKS:

The Spectre Beneath Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Simon Black 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.

Moonscape – Entity, Chapter II: Echoes From A Cognitive Dystopia

Entity, Chapter II: Echoes From A Cognitive Dystopia Album Art

Moonscape – Entity, Chapter II: Echoes From A Cognitive Dystopia
Self-Released
Release Date: 23/11/2020
Running Time: 37:28
Review by Victor Augusto
8/10

Here I am to review the amazing Norwegian band, Moonscape, for the second time. Back in 2017, I was lucky to review the first part of this saga, called simply “Entity”, and I have both a good memory about it, and a regret. Regret, because that album really deserved a better explanation, but I was so young as a reviewer, and immature, that it was impossible at that time. The good memory is of all the amazing people, connected to the band, that I became friends with, including Mr. Håvard Lunde, the one-man-band, and the mind behind the Moonscape concept and music. He is responsible for the composition and this time, he has surpassed himself, working out how he could connect all the guest musicians, to make this album sound as it does. Let me try to free myself from regret and explain why this material is so amazing.

The “Entity” concept (in both parts) is something like Rick Wakeman’s “Journey To The Centre Of The Earth”. Part one was like one song, divided into chapters. This album goes the same way, but we have four songs that have a logical sequence and don’t sound like only one track. In both cases, I used Rick Wakeman’s work as a reference, in terms of the album structure. Is it Progressive Rock/Metal music? Hell yes! Nevertheless, it has a specific sonority, very well balanced between what we know about progressive Heavy Metal bands. I feel that Håvard didn’t want to be stuck in one simple genre, because there are even a few Death Metal parts on this record, like the blast beat and guttural voice that open ‘The Ails To Withstand’.

There is incredible detail here. Quickly, use the scroll down bar to read the MANY guest musicians on this album, and you’ll understand what I mean. Have you read it? Good! Now, come back here and join me with my thoughts. Could you imagine yourself putting together so many contributors, to create good songs, as Håvard has done? It is the most impressive aspect for me. The way that all the guest musicians fit together, to create a good sequence in the songs is amazing! Just the work of all the singers is a hard job because each of them interprets one character in this history.

The concept, for what I could understand, is about someone who tries to flee from this world and hide himself deep inside his own mind, but his terrors and demons can still find him. All the characters (Shadowself, Demon, The Dreamer, Angel, Father and The Erratic) are different states of his mind, that create an inner conflict. But, maybe, they are all real people around the person who’s trying to flee away from this life. No matter what it represents, it is astonishing how all the singers create a different interpretation of each character, exploring angelical or tenor vocals, right to guttural voices. Again, the hard work to put all of it together is what caught my attention the most.

Musically, there’s everything from varied Heavy Metal styles, in good balance. There are various speeds, with loud bass and heavy guitars. Moonscape even use saxophone, violin and piano. Of course, the guitar and keyboard solos are the strongest elements along the tracks, but the other instruments help add different atmospheres, as the chapters are evolving in each track, alongside the new tensions and events from this saga.

At the end of the last song ‘In the Mourning Hours’, there are a few seconds of the intro of the first song from the previous album “Entity” (what we could call Pt1). Håvard also put in the sound of a heartbeat and that made me curious to understand what it means. Is this a sign of a rebirth? Is it the beginning of the same cycle, that will repeat over again? I don’t know, but this mystery will make the listener think about it and hear the album with more attention.

As with most albums from one-man bands, I just feel that the record could have had a little bit more attention paid to the production. However, if you consider that we have more than ten musicians, from all parts of the world, recording their parts alone, I’m certain that Håvard is a wizard and did some kind of magic to put it together! It is the kind of album that makes people think about their lives. I feel that Moonscape was never a band that wanted to record an easy-to-understand album. Moreover, this is the magical side of what Moonscape is. I hope you enjoy this journey through “Entity, Chapter II: Echoes From A Cognitive Dystopia” as much as I did.

TRACKLISTING:
01. A Prelude To Grief
02. Illusion Or Reality?
03. The Ails To Withstand
04. In The Mourning Hours

LINE-UP:
Håvard Lunde – Vocals, Bass, Lead/Rhythm/Acoustic Guitars, Percussion and Programming

GUEST MUSICIANS:
Pauli Souka (Coldbound) – Lead Vocals as ‘Shadowself’
Runar Steen Hansen (Firefight) – Lead Vocals as ‘Demon’
Drake Chrisdensen (Ruins of Elysium) – Lead and Backing Vocals as ‘The Dreamer’
David Åkesson (Qantice) – Lead Vocals as ‘The Erratic’
Marcela Villarroel – Lead Vocals as ‘Angel’
Andreas Jonsson (ex-Spiral Architect) – Lead Guitars
Cezar Popescu (Days of Confusion) – Lead Guitars
Bret Barnes (Independent) – Saxophone
Linus Abrahamson (Guthrie Govan, Andromeda etc.) – Lead Guitars
Aaron Minich (Nekrogoblikon) – Keyboards
Eirik Dischler (Shamblemaths) – Organ
Alexandra Laya (Qantice)- Violin
David Russell (Independent) – Piano
Leviathan (Ex-Unspoken, Kvesta, Abyss Below) – Lead Guitars
Rafael Agostino (Armored Dawn) – Keyboards
John Kiernan – Lead Guitars
Mark Anthony K. (Projekt Gemineye/The Dark Monarchy) – Lead Guitars
Diego Palma (LordDivine) – Keyboards

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Victor Augusto 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.

Immortal Guardian – Psychosomatic

Psychosomatic Cover Art

Immortal Guardian – Psychosomatic
M-Theory Audio
Release Date: 12/02/2021
Running Time: 52:06
Review by Simon Black
8/10

The sophomore album from this Power / Prog quartet is a very interesting beast. So many acts have been impacted by lockdown, but writing and producing an album when your singer is in Brazil, your guitarist / keyboardist is in Las Vegas, your bassist in Texas and you are still running in a new drummer who is up in Canada is no mean feat. …And just to make sure we get the point, there is a single available now all about it, called surprisingly ‘Lockdown’! Let’s think about the process behind creating that for a moment. Prog in particular is all about the ability of the instrumentalist to riff off of each other, to take that improvisation, capture it and structure it in a repeatable way whilst still sounding fresh each and every time it is played. “Psychosomatic” does this with considerable finesse.

Perhaps the most considerable musical Prog feat in here are Gabriel Guardian’s twin roles on guitar and keyboards. I wasn’t not sure how this would work in reality live, as last time I checked in order to shred your audience a new asshole with a guitar on stage, you needed to use both hands. A quick check on Youtube proved that this is in fact exactly what he is doing and it is little short of incredible to watch. Given that the interplay between keyboards and guitar is about continuous use of harmonies  he mostly has to switch between the two, but most of these songs are pretty darn fast and that’s no mean feat to pull off onstage (particularly for the frenetic and quite sublime ‘Goodbye To Farewells’, where the kind of musical interplay you might expect from the likes of Dream Theater is on display). …And shred he does, and pretty damned well to boot, with tracks like ‘Phobia’ that would give the great Joe Satch a run for his money. I’m also going to call out Carlos Zema’s vocals, as the range this guy has on him is quite impressive. When clean, the notes are long, high and loud, there’s gutsy rough’n’ready, a bit of screaming and the odd death grunt in the mix, often scaling between these within the same song and somehow not sounding out of place.

What is refreshing about the Power Metal aspects of this album is that it does not fall into the bear trap of clichés that many European peers do of death by historical or mythically themed concept albums and a highly predictable song structure. Although there is a theme in here, as the band apparently completely scrapped the album they had already started writing in favour of this collection of songs about their experiences in the pandemic. That takes confidence and guts. However, each of the songs on here stands well on its own merits and whilst clearly having a house band sound, does this without sounding repetitive or formulaic. Each song has a clear and distinct song writing structure to it, new techniques, structures and effects creep in with each song but at the same time it’s clearly one album. I am tempted to adopt the moniker ‘Super Metal’ bestowed upon them by their fans just this once as they really are in a class of their own.

This may be their second professional release, but these guys were apparently quite prolific before being signed and the musicianship on here is absolutely top notch. Like most Prog artists they know how a good sound can be achieved technically, although apart from a few solo moments the keyboards do stand a bit further back in the mix, largely generating atmosphere rather than carrying the melody. It still is worth noting that as well as writing remotely, the band members all learned how to record remotely (no mean feat when they all have different digital workstations), producing a project that then gets sent to a Producer to mix down. It certainly does not sound like they were learning on this job. So, do yourself a favour and give this a spin, because it really is a magnificent achievement.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Psychosomatic
02. Read Between The Lines
03. Lockdown
04. Phobia
05. Clocks
06. Self-Isolation
07. Goodbye To Farewells
08. Candlelight
09. Find A Reason
10. New Day Rising

LINE-UP:
Gabriel Guardian – Guitars/Keyboards
Carlos Zema – Vocals
Justin Piedimonte – Drums
Joshua Lopez – Bass

LINKS:

Immortal Guardian Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Simon Black 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.

Amon Sethis – Part 0. The Queen With Golden Hair

Part 0. The Queen With Golden Hair Cover Art

Amon Sethis – Part 0. The Queen With Golden Hair
Self-Released
Release Date: 12/12/2020
Running Time: 78:00
Review by Simon Black
6/10

This is the third album from Grenoble-based Progressive Power Metal quintet Amon Sethis, who once again deliver a concept album with a story taken from somewhere between the Sixth and Seventh Dynasties of Ancient Egypt and covering the life of Egypt’s first female Pharaoh. It’s all a bit vague factually, because the historical record is exceedingly patchy in this politically unstable period to put it mildly and so there’s plenty of scope for artistic interpretation, which is a positive boon for any band. What I am less sure about is whether the world really needs three conceptual albums from the same band with such a narrow historical focus (and with presumably more to come). I have not heard any of the other albums in the series (for which this seems to be a prequel based on the numbering), but I am guessing the Egyptian maqamat tonal form and iqa’at rhythmic mode are a constant throughout their work (that’s the distinctive Egyptian / Middle Eastern sound so abused by Hollywood for those that care). Power Metal concept albums are no stranger to this form and trope (to the point of cliché), but to take that structure into multiple albums without sounding staid takes a lot of work and in this instance throughout a full-length album without sounding the slightest bit tired or clichéd – well that’s quite an achievement.

Musically this is top notch stuff, with an incredibly tight instrumental team displaying no shortage of skill and virtuosity, overlaid by vocalist Julien Tournaud’s clear and crisp vocal delivery (although he’s not afraid to mix it up with some full on growling to keep the delivery flexible). There’s also some great female vocal parts in the mix that add to that epic ensemble effect. In fact, “epic” is probably the key word here and not just from that full on, almost Symphonic feel this album has running through its core, like a stick of Egyptian rock and wonderfully emphasised through a really rich production and sound engineering delivery.

At seventy-eight minutes of run time, brevity is not a factor in the mix here and is the big challenge that I have with this record, which is that much of this material is so very similar in tone and sound. This makes it a bit samey and repetitive, a situation that could have been avoided by trimming the material down to a punchier fifty minutes or so which would have prevented that feeling of repetition and made for a much tighter and more emphatic delivery. I find myself very torn on this review from being impressed with the musicianship and overall sound and being frustrated at the rambling nature of the material. I can’t help feeling that this is a band that you need to enjoy live, where they have to focus on winning an audience over with the tunes rather than getting pulled into a long rambling story. Nevertheless, musically this was very enjoyable, but desperately in need of some judicious editing.

TRACKLISTING:
01. The Legacy From The Past
02. Nitocris The Queen With Golden Hair
03. My Sister, My Love, My Pharaoh
04. The Conspiracy
05. The Secret Letter
06. The Rise Of Aoutef’s Army
07. Lost In The West
08. Desert Storm
09. Osiris God Of The Dead
10. Mask Of Wrath
11. By The Torture
12. Eternal Love
13. The Blood Red Temple
14. From Dust To The Stars

LINE-UP:
Julien Tournoud – Lead And Backing Vocals
Olivier Billoint – Lead And Rhythm Guitars
Eliott Tordo – Keyboards
Thierry Ventura – Bass
Thierry Delvaux – Drums

LINKS:

Amon Sethis Promo Pic

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

Vanden Plas – The Ghost Xperiment: Illumination

The Ghost Xperiment: Illumination Cover Art

Vanden Plas – The Ghost Xperiment: Illumination
Frontiers Music srl
Release Date: 02/12/2020
Running Time: 60:01
Review by Simon Black
6/10

Progressive Metal is not everyone’s cup of tea, that’s for sure. I’ve always had a fondness for it, because before I discovered the dark side of Metal, classical music was a significant backdrop to my early life. Music doesn’t always have to be about the three and half minute hit, but if you can meld the musical complexities and long format elements and combine them with those mainstream pop sensibilities, say as a Dream Theater, Pink Floyd or Rush do then you truly get the best of both worlds. Even those that liberally pour in the Metal on top as well can create a hybrid with cross border appeal – and I am thinking here of the likes of Symphony-X, who have an unerring way of winning people over at festivals who would not normally think twice about this style of music. When Prog works, it works well, but when it gets distracted by its own complexities and forget the commercial sensibilities, it can lose its way.

Vanden Plas have many of the positive elements of the movement going for them. Musically and theatrically these guys have many of the strengths of the likes of Dream Theater and certainly comparable experience, but Dream Theater have learned the hard way that even in the rambling long form that is Prog that less is sometimes more. When they did allow their indulgence to carry them away with the fairies, the result was the utterly disappointing and widely panned “The Astonishing” and for their German genre cousins sadly this feels like a mistake of similar magnitude.

This record is not for the faint of heart. It’s the second part of a massive concept piece, the story is based on a true paranormal event and it’s an absolute beast of an opus. This is an approach they have tried before with the two “Chronicles Of The Immortals” records and as with that arc, I can’t help but feeling that a consolidated double album release would have been a better option when trying to tell this kind of story than splitting the releases into two separate recording blocks. I suggest this for one reason – when you split a concept over a several year release cycle and don’t write and produce them together, you sometimes lose some of the flow and continuity that comes of producing them together.

That’s the negatives out of the way. For the positives I cannot fault what I am hearing from any of the performances. Backed by a rich and epic sounding production standard the soaring vocal delivery of Andy Kuntz cannot help but grab your attention. There are also some real slabs of rhythmic melodic metal driving this disk. There’s plenty of instrumental proficiency on display here, and although perhaps not on as grand a scale as the Petrucci/Rudess machine, nonetheless delivers a prodigious display of technical wizardry from Stephan Lill (Guitar) and Günter Werno (Keyboards). Perhaps I need the luxury of the time to give this pair of albums a few more spins to hook myself in with, but sadly this album doesn’t quite grab the attention immediately as well as some of its peers.

‘When The World Is Falling Down’ (Official Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. When The World Is Falling Down
02. Under The Horizon
03. Black Waltz Death
04. The Lonely Psychogon
05. Fatal Arcadia
06. The Ouroboros
07. Ghost Engineers
08. Krieg Kennt Keine Sieger

LINE-UP:
Andy Kuntz – Vocals
Stephan Lill – Guitar
Günter Werno – Keyboards
Andreas Lill – Drums
Torsten Reichert – Bass

LINKS:

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

EMQ’s with ODYSSEUS

Odysseus Logo

EMQ’s with ODYSSEUS

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Northwest, UK based Progressive Metal/Tech-Death band, Odysseus. Huge thanks to drummer, Sam Martin, 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 Sam Martin, I write and play the drums in Odysseus. We’ve been a band for just over a year now. The band was initially our singer Rachael Downey, Guitarist Kevin Testagrossa, and Bassist Tom Rose deciding they wanted to form a band and start writing together. After a few attempts with different drummers, I approached Rach on joinmyband.com, after seeing the position advertised, and they sent a demo of ‘Wretched’ and a few other tracks. After learning those tracks within a week or so they took me onboard and we filmed our first single ‘Wretched’ a few months later. Dylan Knaggs joined within the last six months after we were advertising for a new guitarist and we’ve been together since.

How did you come up with your band name?

Rach, Tom and Kev met up at ground central in Manchester and many beers later, after dismissing names such as “Perennial”, they agreed on the name Odysseus. A lot of us are into our Greek gods and mythology so the story of Odysseus really struck a chord with everyone. When I joined, I instantly knew who he was, so I was more than happy with the name.

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

I grew up in the small town of Mold in North Wales, when my big brother played in a band called “The Day Before Mortality” the music scene around here was booming. Places like The Tiv and Y Pentan would put bands of all genres on regularly. Mcleans and the MT2M team would always go out of their way to host shows and competitions but it seems the demand and audience isn’t what it used to be before the world went into lockdown, But I’m determined to be a part of the scene resurgence and it’s going to go off when all this mess is over.

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

We recently released our second single and music video for our song ‘Thy Gathering’ on the 22/01/21, With our first single ‘Wretched’ released in November of 2019. Both videos were produced and edited by our friend Abigail Henry who has done an incredible job!

‘Thy Gathering’ (Official Video)

‘Wretched’ (Official Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

As a drummer you’re never far away from amazing talent in the heavy music scene, I’ve always held people like Sam Applebaum (Veil of Maya) and Nic Pettersen (Northlane) highly just because how they navigate and implement their instrument into the songs with power and confidence.

What first got you into music?

My Brothers are 6 and 8 years older than me, so they always influenced me with what they were listening to. We always had Queen CD’s on in mum’s car and they loved to blast Linkin Park, Bullet For My Valentine, Enter Shikari and other old school bands from the noughties on the CD player at home.

Dad brought me to my first heavy metal concert, can’t remember the year but it was Iron Maiden at the M.E.N arena supported by Airbourne. The show they put on was amazing, and the realisation of how many people turn up to shows where the musical genre is frowned upon in today’s society, made me realise I’m in the right place. I got the same feeling at my first ever Download in 2018.

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

At the moment I’d love to do a collab with Alpha Wolf, just because they are heavy and aggressive as hell, and I’m loving my HEAVY heavy music right now. SpiritBox Or Jinjer would be our band pick as they heavily influence us being female fronted and having such a wide musical pallet, it would just be amazing to see what stuff we could come up with and be a part of.

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

I’d love to revive Warped tour and be on that line-up. They always put-on high-energy bands that have been around for years, as well as helping the smaller bands having the chance to share the stage with some of their idols. One of my favourite bands, “Every Time I Die” played on the last Warped tour so being able to hang out with them would’ve been a dream come true.

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

A light breeze, but in all seriousness, we have yet to build up a massive fanbase but appreciate every single one who has commented, played and shared our material so far. We’re all just stoked other people enjoy the music we make!

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

Thank you so much for your support and we can’t wait to play shows and drop more material for you guys to enjoy. We have no plans of stopping or slowing down despite what the world around us is doing.

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

A few spring to mind, Freddie Mercury for sure, just so he can write and record with today’s standards of engineering and producing. Justin Lowe (After the Burial) Because without Rareform I probably wouldn’t be where I am in terms of musical taste and musicianship. From a drummer’s perspective it would have to be Ginger Baker, that man is a God and he changed and opened doors for many prog, metal and rock drummers we can now enjoy today in my opinion.

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

I enjoy the freedom to experiment and being able to come up with ideas collectively and individually. I think it’s always important to have an artistic outlet otherwise you start to go loopy.

One thing I hate is the price of equipment haha, we’ve all invested so much into gear and we’re barely getting started. Another thing with being a drummer is definitely setup time, if there was a way to just make it all become setup like one of those pop-up tents then I’d be much happier.

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

The greater acceptance of heavier music and being allowed to explain that we’re not all devil worshipers, granted there are a few of us. Having crossovers between heavy bands and pop groups so they could be played in clubs would be pretty great. Imagine having a Lamb of God and Arianna Grande collab?

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Johnny Truant – “In The Library Of Horrific Events”

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

Im a lover of CD’s, my brother had a 3-metre span of a wall filled with CD’s on his shelf in his room and I loved reading through all the lyrics and looking at the cover artwork whilst I was growing up.

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

We have yet to play a proper face-to-face gig with Odysseus due to C-19, but when I was drumming in my old band “Favela” we played an “End of an era” gig at Skerries in Bangor, all the locals and popular bands from the surrounding area came and played. The crowd was so involved and the energy in there was incredible. The bands we played alongside with included “Krank” and “Winter Hotel Band” and those guys put on an amazing performance too.

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

I’m currently an engineering apprentice so I’d be mainly working at the factory, but as a hobby id be putting more time into my powerlifting career and competing.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Louis Theroux, Joe Rogan, Ricky Gervais, Karl Pilkington and Eddie Hall.

What’s next for the band?

Be making more music videos with our amazing video producer and editor Abigail Henry, people looking for talented people to shoot music vids for their band should check her out! The plan is to release a full EP in the future, to give guys a clearer idea of the type of music we want to push and promote. Hopefully, pick up some of the gigs we had to cancel, such as Rabidfest and be able to play alongside some awesome bands like “Osiah”.

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

We use LinkTree which holds all our socials into one page so it’s all easily accessible! We use Spotify and YouTube for our music mainly.

https://linktr.ee/OdysseusUK

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

They go hard when they go off, so I’d say a cake, but its Kinder Buenos that do it for me!

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

Just another big thank you to people who have taken the time out of their day to read this or have gone and listened to our material.

And just to say that obviously my old band “Favela” is no longer going, but I hope people enjoy my new musical experiment! Hope everyone stays safe and we can’t wait to get on stage and start playing gigs in the future!

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

EMQ’s With KAUPE

Kaupe Logo

EMQ’s With KAUPE

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with DeLand, Florida based Instrumental Progressive Metal band, Kaupe. Huge thanks to guitarist, Brett Walker, 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?

Brett Walker, guitar. Kaupe formed in the summer of 2016 by myself, and Marc Larabel (drums). The two of us originally formed a band called Loss For Words in the early 2000’s. The two of us eventually parted ways, and 14 years later decided the time was right to jam again. After a year or so of writing songs we landed our bass player, long-time friend Pete Medrano, who was actually looking for members for his own band. After several singer try-outs, we realized that great singers were impossible to find, we chose to be an instrumental band rather than have a singer butcher our songs. The final member of the band was Patrick Ross (keys), who I still say was one of my best craigslist finds to date!

How did you come up with your band name?

Kinda funny actually, I’ll try to sum it up as best as I can. It came out of an inside joke where we coined the term Hawaiian Werewolf. Shortly after, the term was considered as a band name, but was later shortened to “H. Werewolf”, the first track off our 2018 album “The Depths”. The singer of my other band “Junior Bruce” decided to google Hawaiian Werewolf, and the legend of Kaupe was the first thing that popped up. Google Kaupe on your own, it’s a pretty cool Hawaiian folklore legend, and it’s a one-word band name, which is hard to come by these days.

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

We are from DeLand, FL., but most of what we consider to be our local shows are in Orlando, 45 min away. The scene in Orlando is pretty eclectic, and filled with a ton of great bands from all different styles (metal, indie rock, punk, electronic, funk, singer/songwriter). It has been really good to us since we have such a wide range of influences, and can jump on mixed bills from time to time. There’s nothing wrong with a little cream in the coffee as far as we’re concerned…good music is good music. Too many of the same type of bands on one bill can be boring as hell.

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

Latest release: full-length “Cognitive Dissonance” (Releases 19/02/21).

First single off album: ‘Death Rattle’

Who have been your greatest influences?

This is always the hardest question for me since my influences change daily as far as what inspires me to write a song. Sometimes it’s actually a movie, or a soundtrack from a movie. I’d say if you were to sum up collective influences here are some of our biggest: Faith No More, Dillinger Escape Plan, Bach, Ben Folds, Tool, The Mars Volta, Torche, Queens of the Stone Age, Interpol, Converge, Pixies, Depeche Mode, Contortionist, Carpenter Brut, Perturbator, Deftones, Meshuggah, Helmet, Radiohead, Fear Factory, and Led Zeppelin. Lately I’ve been jamming on Entombed.

What first got you into music?

My older sister used to bring me home concert T-Shirts, and got me into GnR, and Metallica at a young age. Megadeth was soon to follow. My dad also listed to bands such as: Emerson, Lake, and Palmer, Dave Clark Five, Beach Boys, Beatles, and all the classics.

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

Josh Homme would definitely be one of them, dude’s badass.

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

Any fest in Australia, cause I’ve always wanted to go/play there.

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

Not sure, skip!

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

We miss you. Covid sucks ass.

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

Bob Ross of course.

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

Enjoy: Performing live is the absolute best thing about being a musician.

Hate:  Having to think about anything involving social media.

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

Having to think about anything involving social media.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

God….probably a tie between “Ride The Lightening” and “Dirt”, there are no bad songs on either of those albums.

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

Since I’m always bouncing mixes down, anything that can go on your phone is what’s best for me. Vinyl, if you’re the stay at home and listen to music type.

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

Probably a local show at Will’s recently, where I locked my keys in my car with all my gear inside, and got a locksmith to open my door 5 minutes before we were to set up on stage. Even though we were the last band on the bill, everyone stayed, and rocked the fuck out.

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

I’d be somewhere with a better job not thinking about social media.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Bob Ross if he were still alive, Joaquin Phoenix, Mike Tyson, Daniel Day-Lewis, and Dave Chapelle. Let’s see what happens.

What’s next for the band?

Dreaming of playing live shows again, buying more gear, writing more tunes, and continuing to craft our sound.

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

www.facebook.com/KaupeBand
www.instagram.com/kaupeband/
www.kaupe.bandcamp.com/
www.youtube.com/channel/UC6PUYgc0H9kLNg4bGhJR8iQ/videos

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

What is a Jaffa?

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

EMQ’s with AMON SETHIS

Amon Sethis Logo

EMQ’s with AMON SETHIS

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Grenoble, France based Power/Progressive Metal band, Amon Sethis. 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?

The band is called AMON SETHIS, a French metal Band who plays power prog metal with oriental influences. The band was created in 2007 and we have 2 albums already. In December we released the third album which is called: “Part 0 – Nitocris The Queen With Golden Hair”.

All the albums are concept albums which tell stories about ancient Egypt during the 6th and 7th dynasties.

How did you come up with your band name?

The name AMON SETHIS has been created with the name of the two Egyptian Gods AMON and SETH. It’s the name of the main character of the two first albums. For the new album we have chosen to talk about the mother of the pharaoh AMON SETHIS, the Queen Nitocris.

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

We come from the region of the Alps in France in Grenoble. The region is really active in metal because there are many international bands from that area such as NIGHTMARE, LONEWOLF, RISING STEEL etc…

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

Our latest release is the album “Part 0 – Nitocris The Queen With Golden Hair”. The album was released in December 2020. It’s the third album of the band.

For the promotion of that album, we have realized 2 videos clips: ‘The Blood Red Temple’ (November 2020) and ‘Desert Storm’ (December 2020).

‘The Blood Red Temple’ (Official Video)

‘Desert Storm’ (Official Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

We love bands such as SYMPHONY X, EVERGREY, DREAM THEATER but each member has also many different influences who make the originality of the music of AMON SETHIS.

What first got you into music?

I think our music is a wise mix of Melodies, powerful riffs and huge cinematographic orchestrations. All these are sustained with a powerful rhythmic section with oriental fretless bass and energic drums.

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

It would be so great to collaborate with some members of the band SYMPHONY X. It would be a great pleasure.

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

As the band is French, it would be so great to play one time at Hellfest but it’s so difficult to be programming there. But it will be fantastic to play at Graspop festival, Wacken or Metal Days…I love that kind of festival.

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

A bra during a concert! 😊 I didn’t think it would happen one day! 😊

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

Don’t hesitate to listen to music during this evil period we live through. For that our music is a good invitation to escape from the real life. It’s a travel back through ancient Egypt, an incredible journey 😊.

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

Ronnie James Dio.

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

To be on stage is the best thing. To express all the feelings that you translate in your music is exciting. Furthermore, the process to create songs is really good too, I love that kind of work: to do the best and to express the feelings in music and to write different stories. To sum up, I like every kind of work as musician.

I hate only the people that don’t pay you after your concert.

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

I will change the algorithm in order to have more visibility for our music!!!! 😊 It’s so hard to promote our music…damned!!

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

SYMPHONY X – “Divine Wings Of Tragedy”

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

CD’s and Vinyl are the best. It’s real objects that you can collect and that’s so great. Downloads are good to promote your music but for my part it’s so virtual.

I like to open my CD or Vinyl, read the booklet and observe the artwork. I think is the best support for the musician.

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

Definitely It was in 2014 when we played at PPM Fest in Mons (Belgium) We played with bands like SAXON, RAGE, THERION, VANDEN PLAS, EVERGREY…etc …it was so great😊.

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

Maybe a Tennis coach! It’s my passion 😊.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Maybe, I would want to invite DEVIN TOWNSEND, one of my favourite artists 😉.

What’s next for the band?

The next step is to promote this album as much than we can and as long as the pandemic will endure…And then we can give a second “wave” of promotion to the album, making concerts…😊 I hope that we could make it as soon as possible.

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

We use Facebook and Bandcamp to promote our music and of course our channel on YouTube.
www.facebook.com/Amon.Sethis
www.amonsethis.bandcamp.com/
www.youtube.com/channel/UCb9pb_wCqJuuTcpiH6OlKKQ

We appear also on all digital platforms:
www.open.spotify.com/artist/0192dFw7G6HXWLYod7ojgJ
www.deezer.com/en/artist/806113

And all the others!!

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Maybe a cake!! I don’t know! 😊 you will tell me!

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

Spread the words of AMON SETHIS in liking the Facebook page! We really had a good time to compose this great album “Part 0 – Nitocris The Queen With Golden Hair. I hope you will listen and love it! Keep safe during these bad times…

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