EMQ’s with STAGEWAR

Stagewar Logo

EMQ’s with STAGEWAR

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Hessen, Germany based Thrash Metal band, Stagewar. Huge thanks to guitarists, Kimon & Dezius, 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 the two guitarists Kimon and Dezius. We founded STAGEWAR in 2003. We used to play together in the school band and wanted to do metal.

How did you come up with your band name?

I think it was such a brainstorming thing. I still remember Kimon saying the name and we thought it was perfect. It describes exactly what we are trying to be.

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

We live in Hessen/Germany. To be precise, in a low mountain range near Frankfurt am Main. The mountains are called Taunus. There is not much going on here. The scene is small and everyone knows everyone. But in general, the scene in Germany is unfortunately pretty boring.

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

Our latest release is the single “R.U.N.” from the just released Album “DANGER TO OURSELVES”

‘R.U.N.’ (Official Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

I think we all are influenced by Metallica and punk rock music.

What first got you into music?

AC/DC.

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

I don’t know what to answer to that.

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

Hellfest.

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

I don’t know about weird, but we once got a nice picture from a child. That was really cute.

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

Stay Metal!

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

That’s tough to answer. Each of us would certainly answer this differently. But I think we can agree on Cliff Burton.

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

Surely each of us answers that differently. Personally, I love to play live and write new songs. I hate the day after a concert. 😊

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

How the internet works. It is an angel and a devil rolled into one.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Metallica – “Master Of Puppets”.

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

Vinyl. Except in the car!!

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

There are so many good memories. Many evenings were special. One concert that has stuck in my mind was at the Taunus Metal Festival.

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

Personally, I would probably do more sports. Otherwise, everything would probably be as it is now.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

My girl, my bandmates and my dog.

What’s next for the band?

The same as always. Write a song, record an album and play it live.

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

Instagram and YouTube.
www.instagram.com/stagewar_official/
www.youtube.com/stagewar
www.stagewar.bandcamp.com/releases
www.facebook.com/stagewar
www.twitter.com/stagewar666
www.stagewar.tumblr.com/
www.open.spotify.com/artist/6yDhmNfB0J8GPbN42VaGYV

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Biscuit!

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

Thank you for your support and for the interview. I hope to see you on the road.

Stagewar Band Photo

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.

Sodom – Bombenhagel EP

Bombenhagel EP Cover Art

Sodom – Bombenhagel EP
Steamhammer/SPV
Release Date: 20/08/2021
Running Time: 14:47
Review by Dark Juan
8/10

Greetings, my sybaritic sycophants! It is I, Dark Juan, sometime Satanist, wannabe psychopomp and all round generally poor judge of character, and I have returned from a sojourn to France to drag my record collection, other possessions and Mrs. Dark Juan’s ridiculously colossal library back to jolly old Blighty, the plague island. Already I am objecting to the price of alcohol in the UK, when in France I could pick up a splendid bottle of red for the princely sum of 1.91EUR. In the company of my lovely friends over there and more especially my travel and work buddy Tony (whom Mrs. Dark Juan has now christened my ginger wife, for reasons best known only to herself) many bottles were sunk (although Tony was afraid of my favourite French tipple, Demon biere blonde, at a mere 12% strength) and the work was completed, which now means that the Smellhounds and their human servants are now living in a jungle of cardboard boxes and Dark Juan Terrace resembles a combination of an insane taxidermy studio, a moving company’s warehouse and a particularly grotty record shop. Which were always the best kind, as far as I am concerned. Also, books are fucking heavy. Twenty fucking eight boxes of books we lugged back between us… You’d expect me to look like Charles fucking Atlas after loading and unloading those bastards. I don’t. (More like Charles Dance 😂 – Rick)

I look like a tired old man who has overexerted himself with his twenty something girlfriend after a massive cocaine binge.

On that happy image, I’ll stop telling you about myself and instead let you know that I am listening to German thrashmeisters Sodom and their latest EP “Bombenhagel”. This is a three tracker, with the title track being a re-recorded version of the song originally released on the classic “Persecution Mania” album, way back when, in 1987. Fuck, I’m old. I remember that record being released. Anyway, Sodom have wisely not moved a single inch from their classic Eurothrash blueprint, which is a great thing from my point of view, because I have been able to indulge in a teenage nostalgiafest, remembering the first time I heard “Agent Orange” and reminiscing about the sheer excitement that thrash metal produced in me as a young, impressionable lad for whom Iron Maiden wasn’t cutting it anymore. Before I discovered Morbid Angel, anyway. ‘Bombenhagel’ doesn’t actually sound that different from the original version, the main difference being the twin guitar attack of Yorck Segatz and Frank Blackfire, as opposed to the single guitar lines of yore. Harris Johns also contributes a solo. There’s even a sneaky bit of the Stars And Stripes snuck into the end of the tune!!! It’s a decent version of a classic song though.

After ‘Bombenhagel’ we are into the realms of new material – ‘Coup De Grace’ being a paean to the depravity of the human race and the fact we are administering the coup de grace to ourselves as a species, what with the climate emergency going on around us and the absolute disregard the capitalist classes are paying to it, and ‘Pestiferous Posse’ being written about the cowboys, the outlaws and the gunfight at the OK Corral, and how it references to modern events, such as the storming of the US Capitol by a bunch of deluded dickheads who wished to overthrow democracy.

Musically, we are in classic thrash metal territory. Serrated, pistoning riffing and blistering solos and whammy bar dives are the order of the day, underpinned with snot nosed punk attitude and high-speed double bass drumming. Tom Angelripper’s mid pitched growl sounds as vibrant, snappy and snarly as ever and his distorted punk influenced bass punches through the guitar work with menace. The production on the EP is also the ultraclassic Eurothrash sound, rhythm guitars and bass slightly soupy sounding, with the drumming sitting proud, clean and kinglike above the rest of the music, and clear, clarion cymbals ringing arctically through it all.

All in all, the “Bombenhagel” EP is a jolly fine listen, a sub-15-minute thrash metal blast that doesn’t bring anything new to the table but proving that thrash metal done right will never die. With recent releases from Sacred Reich and Thrasherwolf and the like, thrash is undergoing something of a renaissance in the underground.

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System (Das patentierte Dark Juan Blutspritzer-Bewertungssystem – I fucking LOVE German! Everything sounds better in German) awards these Teutonic thrash titans 8/10 for a fine EP, lacking only in bringing anything avant-garde to the music.

‘Bombenhagel 2021’ (Lyric Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Bombenhagel
02. Coup De Grace
03. Pestiferous Posse

LINE-UP:
Tom Angelripper – Vocals, Bass
Yorck Segatz – Guitars
Frank Blackfire – Guitars
Toni Merkel – Drums

LINKS:

Sodom Promo Pic

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

EMQ’s With ESCAPE PROJECT

Escape Project Logo

EMQ’s With ESCAPE PROJECT

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Rio de Janeiro, Brazil based Heavy Metal/Thrash band, Escape Project. Huge thanks to Mauro Filler, Marcelo Duhá and Silvio Mazzei, 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?

Mauro Filler: I play guitar. I actually use the guitar to write songs. It’s what I like to do most in life. With the pandemic, it got even stronger and I needed an escape valve to keep my sanity. So, I recorded everything that came out of my hands and the more I recorded, the more aggressive the sound got. I put together the ideas and initially invited Marcelo Duhá, a great friend who has played with me since we were teenagers, to share with me the production of what comes out mainly on vocals, where I always had a lot of difficulties. And when we already had good material, I invited Silvio Mazzei to the project. An extremely talented singer who embraced the idea and brought amazing lyrics and melodies to Escape Project.

Marcelo Duhá: I play Bass. Mauro and I have been in another metal band since we were teenagers so ,when he decided to start this project about a year ago and started showing me the songs, things just clicked very quickly and easily.

Silvio Mazzei: I’m Silvio Mazzei. I sing for the band. Mauro and Marcelo have been working on this project for a couple of years and I joined them in February this year because they needed a singer.

How did you come up with your band name?

Mauro: The idea was to have a project where I could feel good, doing something I really like. Use music to express myself. To be okay with myself. To be an escape project…

Marcelo: Mauro had the concept in his head. After sharing it with me, we bounced some ideas back and forth and it just came about naturally.

Silvio: “Escape” comes from the need we have to escape, sometimes, from the regular life of any working man.

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

Mauro: Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. We have great bands around here. But we have no place to play.

Silvio: I must say that metal is not that popular here. Not at all.

Marcelo: Unfortunately, the Metal scene here is practically dead.

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

Silvio: We’ve been working on this album that will be called “Holy Sin” so we’ve been releasing a few singles one by one on those digital platforms since May of 2021. Soon, the album will be completed.

Mauro: We released three singles in 2021. The last one was ‘Back On The Edge’. We had one of our songs, ‘Ashes of Desire’, played on ‘Pegadas de Andreas Kisser’, which is a radio show hosted by Andreas Kisser, from Sepultura, in a huge FM radio station dedicated to Rock called 89 FM A Rádio Rock.

Marcelo: The three songs we have released so far.

‘Ashes Of Desire’ (Lyric Video)

‘Back On The Edge’ (Lyric Video)

‘Sentence Of Death’ (Lyric Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Silvio: I must say The Beatles and almost all hard rock bands from the 70’s like Deep Purple, Led Zeppelin, Sabbath etc…

Mauro: Jimi Hendrix, Adrian Smith and James Hetfield.

Marcelo: Steve Harris, Geezer Butler and Geddy Lee.

What first got you into music?

Silvio: The Beatles did it. After that, the Heavy Metal wave from the 80’s. I was a teenager back then so I got very involved in all that movement.

Mauro: Watching my father play. He is a great bass player.

Marcelo: Watching the video of ‘Aces High’ by Iron Maiden back in 1984 or 1985.

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

Mauro: Sacred Reich and Exodus.

Marcelo: Fates Warning.

Silvio: I wish Deep Purple asked me to sing in a couple of songs before they stop playing.

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

Marcelo: Wacken. Well, it’s Wacken, right?

Mauro: Wacken and Rock in Rio.

Silvio: Wacken, Rock In Rio.

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

Silvio: Gifts I don’t know but I’ve received some very weird music requests written on  napkins.

Mauro: I never received one…hahahaha

Marcelo: Can’t think of one…I don’t have that many fans.

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

Marcelo: Thank you for your support. It means everything.

Silvio: Look out! For here comes “Escape”!!!

Mauro: Take care…today this is the most important thing to do…

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

Marcelo: Ronnie James Dio.

Silvio: Oh…Ronnie James Dio!!

Mauro: Hendrix and Cliff Burton.

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

Mauro: I like to write…I live for it…and I don’t like competition in music.

Silvio: Being on stage. Sharing the energy with the fans. I hate the payment.

Marcelo: I really enjoy playing live. I really hate dishonest promoters.

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

Marcelo: How much musicians and songwriters get paid.

Silvio: Management

Mauro: More honesty…

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Silvio: Deep Purple’s “Machine Head” album

Mauro: Metallica’s “…And Justice For All”. I have it tattooed on my arm.

Marcelo: Iron Maiden’s “Powerslave”

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

Marcelo: CD’s. except for the album covers. Vinyl covers are the best.

Silvio: If it’s music it’s fine. Anything goes.

Mauro: CD’s

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

Silvio: When my band (Inquisição) opened a concert for Deep Purple in Rio 2008.

Marcelo: The one where our singer couldn’t make it and I had to sing too.

Mauro: ...and I was there…for me it was playing on one of the most important stages in my city which is Circo Voador.

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

Mauro: Needs to have numbers…I like numbers…

Marcelo: Teaching.

Silvio: Maybe selling records??

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Silvio: Ian Gillan, Paul Rodgers, David Coverdale, Ritchie Blackmore & Macca.

Mauro: James Hetfield and Warren Haynes.

Marcelo: My closest friends.

What’s next for the band?

Silvio: Put the album out and hope for the best.

Mauro: Just play…and play loud…. I need this…

Marcelo: Releasing more songs.

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

Silvio: Basically, all of them !
www.instagram.com/escapeproject.official/
www.open.spotify.com/artist/4V64423aGNXUo6g4scTa4u
www.deezer.page.link/2TKQ85EXtYMrJvE97
www.youtube.com/channel/UCjmkTw5o-0kyJu0NAMazsRg

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Marcel: Hahahahahaha. The eternal dilemma.

Silvio: I don’t have a clue.

Mauro: I have no idea

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

Silvio: Listen to Escape!!!

Marcelo: If you like the band, please get in touch.

Mauro: Take care and listen to heavy metal.

Escape Project 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 Edson Graseffi from MOTORHAMMER

Mororhammer Logo

EMQ’s with Edson Graseffi from MOTORHAMMER

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview, with São Paulo, Brazil based Heavy/Thrash Metal band, Motorhammer. Huge thanks to vocalist/drummer, Edson Graseffi, 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 Edson Graseffi, I am a Brazilian drummer and singer. I have been active in the Metal scene for 35 years. I was the founder of Panzer, a traditional Brazilian Thrash Metal band that I played with for 25 years. After the end of this band, I put together two new projects. Motorhammer, band in which I am re-recording several songs from my discography to commemorate my three and a half decades dedicated to drums in heavy music. My other project is called Cosmic Rover (Stoner Metal), which had its debut album voted one of the best albums of 2019 by the readers of Roadie Crew magazine, the largest Heavy Metal publication in Latin America. In both bands, I play the role of drummer and vocalist full time, which is something very rare to see in the Metal world scene.

How did you come up with your band name?

When I created Motorhammer, I wanted a name that would express my intense and heavy playing and represent all the years of my work within the Heavy Metal scene, without any breaks. The name of a tool that hits mercilessly and in a heavy way seemed appropriate to represent all of this, in addition to alluding to Motörhead, a form of homage to a band so important in my musical background.

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

We are a band from São Paulo, the biggest city in Brazil and Latin America. Here the scene was very intense from the 80’s until around 2005, when everything started to change. Due to problems related to my country’s financial situation, many small and medium clubs where the bands played closed their doors and the public mentality change that followed ended up making it difficult for the more underground scene to expand with tours and releases as it was in the past. But the bands keep playing for the love of Metal.

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

I will talk about my work personally, because Motorhammer is a very new band that emerged in 2021. I have around twenty-eight titles in my discography including CD’s, EP’s, Singles, compilations and DVD. My last release was precisely with Motorhammer, the EP “Round 35”. You can check all this material on my website:

www.edsongraseffi.com.br

‘Fighting Against The Walls’ (Audio)

Who have been your greatest influences?

There are many drummers who influenced me, but I can name Scott Travis (Judas Priest), Bill Ward (Black Sabbath) and Dan Beehler (Exciter) as my biggest influences. As a vocalist, I always liked the vocalists with dirty voice and full of overdrive, due to my type of voice, Blackie Lawless (W.A.S.P), Kevin Dubrow (Quiet Riot), Gene Simmons (Kiss), Mille Petrozza (Kreator) are some of them.

What first got you into music?

My first experiences with music were at school when I was just a child, I sang in a children’s choir for many years, it wasn’t connected to Rock n Roll at all, but it was a very important stage where I learned to use my voice. In 1983, I met Kiss and the “Creatures of the Night” album and that all changed my life forever.

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

Oh Boy…There are many bands that I would love to work with, but if I could choose Testament and Metal Church, they would be two bands that I would have a dream come true.

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

Any, if Testament and Metal Church were in the line-up

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

Actually, the weirdest thing wasn’t a gift, but what a fan asked me for. At the end of a concert, a boy came to ask for my socks to take with me as a souvenir of the concert.

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

Don’t give up on Metal, it’s alive, just pay attention to everything around you, listen to new bands.

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

There are many, but I believe Neil Peart and John Bonham could be immortal, they would still have a lot to teach the world. Bon Scott was too early too, what wouldn’t he have produced with AC/DC? Would be wonderful.

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

I admire musicians who play to the music, make their instrument play with feeling and always focused on what the music asks for. Hate is a too heavy word to use in that sense, but I don’t understand how there is a whole world scene that overvalues DJs and consumes that soulless electronic thing.

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

I would bring the big labels back and consume them for physical material. A lot of people fought for the freedom to release everything independently, today we have it, but it was the money of the big labels that made many names become giants, there is no strong music market without money spinning and making the machine run, and that goes for the Heavy Metal too. Today new bands can’t make a living from their music which makes the whole music scene very vulnerable and uncertain.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

There are many, but Kiss “Creatures of the Night” has a huge importance in my life. Until today, I have the same feelings as that boy who was discovering the world of Heavy Metal when I listen to this record.

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

Vinyl for sure!!!! Cassettes are awesome too if you have the right HIFI equipment to listen to them.

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

There were many good concerts in 35 years, but I can highlight a Cosmic Rover concert in Uruguay, a neighboring country in Brazil, in 2019, an amazing night sold out where we played to 1300 people hungry for Metal. The Uruguayan audience is incredible.

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

It’s hard to think about it because I’ve spent my whole life looking at music as the main pillar of my life, but I can say that maybe I was a surfer. My wife is a surfer, she surfs Body Boarding, I’m always on the beach with her and I see how those guys are free and have fun, it must be an amazing thing to do and live the scene.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Five people who like to drink beer and talk about Rock n Roll!!

What’s next for the band?

Unfortunately, in my country and all-over Latin America, the shows are still hard to happen, so let’s record a live session in a studio for people to see Motorhammer perform live somehow.

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

People can check out Motorhammer’s work on Spotify, the EP is available on all platforms. On my website, you can also listen to all the albums I recorded with other bands. On my YouTube channel there is also a lot of video material released by all the bands I played, mainly by Panzer which has a lot of videos on YouTube.
www.edsongraseffi.com.br/
www.facebook.com/egraseffi
www.instagram.com/motor.hammer/
www.open.spotify.com/artist/5n1dbc9jujl9jTS2dTylUT
www.youtube.com/EdsonGraseffiDrummer

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

What are Jaffa Cakes? hahahahaha

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

I want to thank Ever Metal and Victor for the interview opportunity, your work in helping musicians like me to spread my work to the European audience is very important.

Victor’s full review of Motorhammer’s “Round 35” EO

Motorhammer 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.

Motorhammer – Round 35 EP

Round 35 EP Cover Art

Motorhammer – Round 35 EP
Self-Released
Release Date: 03/06/2021
Running Time: 21:47
Review by Victor Augusto
9/10

“Greetings, metal maniacs”. Have you already heard these words in many radio shows? Maybe some of you that read my reviews have already heard it from the great DJ Dave Softee on his amazing show called Metal Meltdown. I remember when he interviewed the Brazilian Thrash Metal band Machinage and that day I discovered the awesome radio station called Metal Messiah Radio. This station has been promoting many Brazilian bands for years, also great metal bands from all around the world. I’ve lost count of how many bands I have introduced to them after that, also how many Brazilian bands I have discovered, just by their DJs promoting them.

Now, the radio has a special Brazilian member, the amazing Isaura La Cour. She joined forces with Matthew Szablewicz (DJ Szab), from the NYC Metal Scene show to offer a proper space for the Brazilian scene. As a result of this incredible work by Matthew, Isaura and their crew; I have been lucky to discover another amazing band who are the subject of this review! The Brazilian Thrash Metal band, with less than one year of existence, Motorhammer!

Ok! I am using my Charles Xavier telepathic powers to read your thoughts and I know you are thinking that a band who have been around for less than a year cannot offer anything, so astonishing, to justify the positive impression I have had. You would be wrong! Motorhammer are new but all the members involved are very experienced in the Brazilian scene. The vocalist/drummer/founder Edson Graseffi, for example, has more than 30 years experience and he has been a part of many important bands in Brazil, so this EP was born to celebrate Edson’s career with material that he composed or helped to compose throughout the decades. To make it possible, he invited guitarist (also producer) Renato Haboriny and bassist (a long-time friend of Edson as well) Daniel Corvo; two respected musicians in Brazil.

The album is a compilation of four old compositions that Edson was part of (plus a cover) that have been re-recorded, with better production values. By the way, this was the first thing that made me love the band on first listen. What a killer record production. It’s similar to what legendary bands like Destruction or Exodus can extract from the studio or what producers like Andy Sneap can offer. Maybe you think this isn’t relevant considering many big bands do it, but the prices to have the proper studio time and equipment in Brazil, to reach this level of production, are very high, so I must highlight it.

Musically, the songs have a similar sonority in terms of composition, even though they come from different bands that Edson was a part of. The opening track ‘Fighting Against The Walls’ (originally from Edson’s band called Punch but that was used regularly by his band that came right after them, called Panzer) has pure Exodus heaviness & spirit where they opt for cadenced music, amazing drum fills and groove. ‘Warning Hell’ (originally from another of Edson’s band called Reviolence) is a bit faster and it reminded me of the brutal style from Germany’s Destruction. ‘Rage Over Rage’ (originally from the band Chasing Fear) also explores cadenced rhythms and leaves space open for great riff work. Edson also shows a different vocal style on this track, exploring parts with cleaner singing alongside good melodies. The last two songs have amazing dancing bass following excellent percussion on drums.

‘The Metal Church’ (Also from Reviolence) is like a heavy ballad. For this one, try to imagine a divine performance from Ronnie James Dio fronting a Thrash Metal band. Ironically, you could mention the band Metal Church as one of the influences here as well? It is an amazing song. The closing track ‘Allied Forces‘ is a cover song from Canadian band Triumph that showcases Classic Metal from the 1980’s but, once again, dressed in a Thrash Metal style.

“Round 35” is an amazing EP that shows the Thrash Metal veins within Edson, together with all the great musicians that were (or still are) partners of him on his path. Trust me; to make Heavy Metal for such a long time in Brazil is not an easy task. 35 years/rounds is an anniversary very much worth celebrating and I wish many new rounds for Motorhammer. For now, we have a show of riffs and solos from Renato Haboriny, strong bass from Daniel Corvo and amazing drum/vocal work from Edson. The three of them together are able to kick some serious ass.

‘Fighting Against The Walls’ (Audio)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Fighting Against The Walls
02. Warning Hell
03. Rage Over Rage
04. The Metal Church
05. Allied Forces (Triumph Cover)

LINE-UP:
Edson Graseffi – Vocals, Drums
Renato Haboriny – Guitars
Daniel Corvo – Bass

LINKS:

Motorhammer Promo Pic

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.

Redshark – Evil Realm (Expanded Edition)

Evil Realm (Expanded Edition) Album Cover Art

Redshark – Evil Realm (Expanded Edition)
Iron Oxide Records
Release Date: 04/06/2021
Running Time: 45:05
Review by Simon Black
6/10

Originally released as a five-track EP back in 2019 and presumably because COVID is still making life difficult for everyone in Barcelona, this release sees the record expanded into a full length version by splicing together this EP and its predecessor 2016’s “Rain Of Destruction” EP – with the ‘Destroy What Destroys You’ single thrown in for good measure. So this is very much a single disk summary of their back catalogue and evolution to date and not cutting any new territory. That said if, like me, you are new to the band then it’s as good a place to start as any.

That single ‘Destroy What Destroys You’ is full of 80’s infused Thrash and is the only song on here to have an original and re-recorded version. It’s also a very succinct summary of what the band are like at their best now, as it’s dripping with energy and youthful enthusiasm. The older material is more NWOBHM than Speed, but works well as vocally it’s got a very different delivery. That said, I love the energy, brashness and fury of the more recent tracks, which show a band really getting a grip with what their core sound is about.

It’s all very fast and furious and definitely more classic early Thrash/NWOBHM/Speed Metal hybridisation in style, suffering from the hangover left by punk, with a cheesy cover straight out of that period, although I have to say I love the repeated use of the band’s red shark mascot on all their branding. Most of the songs fly by in three minutes, but when they do take their time on slower and longer material, it works pretty well too, giving vocalist Pau Correas time to expand his style and show his range.

The downside of the splicing the back catalogue together is that despite label owner and Producer Bart Gabriel doing his best to remaster this, I suspect the original source material was too limited to do much with. If you don’t have the original studio masters then this can be problematic, but sometimes, even when you do, really basic recordings don’t give even the best engineer much to work with, so consequently the recording quality jumps around all over the place. It’s not clear if this is home or studio captured originally – maybe a combination of both, but either way the sound quality doesn’t do the material enough justice. Now, I know many 80’s trailblazers managed quite well with piss-poor resources back in the day, but in reality in a crowded 21st Century marketplace where recording technology is available to anyone with a half decent computer it seems a real let down. Bizarrely, the older the material  the better the recording quality is, even though the songs are not as strong, as those earliest songs have a much fatter sound.

These boys have got what it takes in terms of tunes and delivery, but desperately need to put these old recordings to bed and start afresh. If these tracks had been given the chance of a fresh studio recording session, then this would have been a very different end product, although I appreciate that COVID may not have made that an option. When they do, they may just be unstoppable…

‘Burn Your Flag’ (Official Visualiser)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Destroy What Destroys You
02. Sentenced To Kill
03. Burn Your Flag
04. The Beginning Of Storm
05. Stronger Than Ever
06. Destroy What Destroys You (remix)
07. Lost In The Streets
08. Lights Of Darkness
09. Witch
10. Fight The Rules Of Power
11. On The Edge Of War
12. Lights Of Darkness

LINE-UP:
Pau Correas – Vocals
Philip Graves – Guitars
Javier Bono – Guitars
Chris Carrest – Bass
Mark Striker – Drums

LINKS:

Redshark 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.

Mordred – The Dark Parade

The Dark Parade Album Cover Art

Mordred – The Dark Parade
M-Theory Audio
Release Date: 23/07/2021
Running Time: 34:08
Review by Simon Black
7/10

Mordred back in the day were quite the unexpected thing. Ostensibly a Bay Area Thrash band, they innovatively included crossover Funk sentiments and lots of turntablism, which was then currently coming into its own through the Hip-Hop scene (although as a musical innovation and instrument it actually dates all the way back to the experimental modernist musique concrète movement pre-World War 2 if you really want to be pernickety). Either way, when we all heard their Funk-Thrash hit floor-ripper ‘Falling Away’ all those moons ago, we realised this was something quite, quite different. And to be clear, the whole Nu-Metal movement may not have happened without these boys and then Faith No More, amongst others, dragging this quirky concept into the mainstream.

Mordred’s original label Germany’s Noise International back in the late 1980’s to 1990’s have an awful lot to answer for in this regard, both positively and negatively. For a label whose raison d’être was to stand against the tide of mainstream labels and carve a place out for the Metal and Thrash scene, they (or specifically their owner and A&R man Karl-Ulrich Walterbach) did a lot of damage to the bands in their care along the way in almost equal proportion to the good. Let’s be fair, without this label and its immediate predecessor Modern Music Records, it’s unlikely that we would have seen bands like Black Flag or The Misfits get any European distribution and the spin-off Noise label successfully broke the likes of Sabbat, Celtic Frost, Kreator, Running Wild and their biggest hit of all, Helloween.

That came at a massive price at a time when independent labels were carving a niche based on not shitting on your artists and giving them a bigger share of the albeit smaller revenue pot. This was the label of choice in Europe for the scene and most of us fans had no idea what was happening underneath the hood back then. However, for a label founded by a self-proclaimed anarchist (he was a political activist whose activities borderlined enough on terrorism for the German authorities to ensure he spent the early part of the 70’s in jail, and started his first label from a squat in Berlin) Walterbach frequently used the same capitalist dodgy business techniques as their major competitors. He dictated what he wanted bands to produce (change direction at your own peril), screwed the artists with shitty contracts and poor tour support and if they did not like what they heard, would bury the release, or abandon whole sub-genres on a whim. There’s a whole book out there about it which is worth a read (‘Damn the Machine – The Story of Noise Records’ by David E. Gehlke), which uniquely gives both the artists and Walterbach the chance to present their side of the story. The label didn’t survive the 90’s unsurprisingly and in the intervening years, its catalogue has since been sold from pillar to post, although it appears there are moves to revive the brand name at least.

Back to Mordred though, who clearly have their own view on this having experienced the negative side for themselves. Poised to show up in Europe in the 90’s to tour and promote the last of their initial albums “The Next Room” in 1994, they discovered that Noise had inexplicably buried it and given no tour promotion, causing the plug to be pulled on the tour before it even got going. This showed a huge lack of foresight, given how huge Nu-Metal would eventually prove to be and Mordred’s response to that behaviour was to stick two fingers to the label and disband, rather than get dragged into a protracted legal wrangling like that experienced by Helloween. And disband they did for some considerable time, although they resurfaced for live shows occasionally, but this release marks the first new full length studio recording since 1994 (having dipped their toes in the water last year with the ‘Volition’ EP).

A lot has happened since then…Nu-Metal – a genre directly influenced by Crossover acts like Mordred has come and gone, but there is a deep revival of many acts and sounds from that period, as old farts like me get retrospective and our children realise that some pretty good shit with depth and integrity actually came out of this period, rather than just the perms or mullets, garish clothes and hairspray they had been led to believe.

This album really does musically pick up where “The Next Room” left off, but does so with a distinctly updated and modern take. The line-up is pretty much back to their peak in 1991 with the exception of the drum stool – so this is perhaps unsurprising, although Scott Holderby’s vocals have definitely dropped an octave or two in range in the intervening years. It doesn’t make a difference, as he knows how to use his voice to good effect and leads us through the sometimes controversial lyrics with aplomb, with an emphatic use of diction that weaves you into the lyrical story. The first point that strikes though is the fact that the band have benefitted from a far richer production sound than they could afford back in the day, where the tininess of recording quality could often be masked by bucket loads of reverb, that’s a trick that does not work digitally and the band have made no attempt to sound retro, which works massively in their favour – making the album sound new, modern and relevant despite the retro mood evoked by the turntables.

They also remain unafraid to be experimental, for example the title track itself infuses all the Thrash sentiments and mood with a deep Ska groove that should not work, but absolutely does. Why it works after all these years is that they’ve retained their political attitude, the Thrash/Funk rhythmic groove and the ability to make catchy songs with shout along choruses. The deep rhythmic core of this lies with Art Liboon’s bass and the superb interplay between guitarists James Sanguinetti and Danny White. Where the album falls a little short is that the eclectic selection of song-writing styles on here make it hard to pin down, but what it lacks in by the numbers song-writing, it makes up for in innovation and challenges to the audience’s expectations. I hope this is not just a brief flash in the pan, but a true revival, as the world needs to realise how influential these guys were even if they never got to enjoy the rewards of their innovation back in the day.

‘Demonic #7’ (Official Lyric Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Demonic #7
02. Malignancy
03. I Am Charlie
04. Dragging For Bodies
05. The Dark Parade
06. All Eyes on the Prize
07. Dented Lives
08. Smash Goes The Bottle

LINE-UP:
Scott Holderby – Vocals
Art Liboon – Bass
James Sanguinetti – Guitar
Danny White – Guitar
Aaron “DJ Pause” Vaughn – Turntables/Keyboards
Jeff Gomes – Drums

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

EMQ’s with DARKENING SKIES

Darkening Skies Logo

EMQ’s with DARKENING SKIES

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Ashburn, Virginia, based Progressive/Groove Thrash Metal band Darkening Skies. 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 Darkening Skies. We play thrash metal with a groove and progressive edge. We met February 2014, after I put out a Craigslist ad, and fate was on our side, because 1) we met our drummer, Germ, and 2) No one we met was a Craigslist psychopath (the weirdest people we met were consistently vocalists. Go figure.) We started out playing covers and just jamming, and because local clubs were only hosting metal bands who played originals, we got settled, got the writing bug, and it kind of took off from there. Writing lasted some time, so we stuck with it till we got it. Our setlist back them consisted of our first album. We started networking with other local bands and promoters and started playing out. We had a few members come and go, a few try-outs that didn’t work out, but that’s par for the course…there isn’t really a blueprint for success as a band, but we learned as we went. I moved to San Diego a couple years back, and we agreed to keep going virtually, via Zoom/One Drive, etc. We were pretty much doing everything online anyways before (writing in Guitar Pro, uploading the tabs for the other band members to Google Drive, outside of our weekly practice, which helped us have really efficient practices when we got together because each member had their timing and rhythm already down) because we loved writing and collaborating so much and still had plans. Actually, we didn’t get signed by Jib Machine Records until I moved across the country! Before I left, we had recorded all the tracks for the EP we had started working on in 2018. I actually had a cold when I recorded the vocals to ‘Swallow Your Soul’, which was the final take. We finished those in a final session we got in at Germ’s house, days before I headed to the airport.

How did you come up with your band name?

It wasn’t clever, or anything. It’s an allusion to the Blood Moon Philosophy from the Book of Revelation, “…and the sun became black as sackcloth, and the moon became as blood”. But in the moment, I was just driving through a thunderstorm on the way to class, and I looked up in the sky and thought, most days just feel like a gathering storm to me. And, if it’s not a storm you’re standing in, then you must be standing in the eye and waiting for it to hit again. It sounded like a good name to go with. Germ and I met up to talk shop, and decided to roll with it. Good decisions happen over beer and peanuts!

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

We are from North Virginia, just outside DC. The DC and Baltimore scene are pretty close. Germ didn’t grow up here, he’s from CT outside of NYC where the scene was great (So much music!) I was a Navy brat, born in Jacksonville, FL, and settling down in NOVA for about 27 years of my life. The DC scene is pretty cool, you might have to travel a bit for a show, but they are out there! There are some great bands here we’ve played with, or befriended: One Slack Mind, Omnislash, Rat Infested, Red Sword, Saint Diablo, Traverse, plenty more. Some great historical bands out of DC as well! Bad Brains, Minor Threat, Wrathchild America, Henry Rollins. Dave Grohl was from here, we periodically hear stories about him (His mom was a substitute teacher from Alexandria, VA, and even taught me in English class one day, at Centreville High School; swear to God. We got to ask her questions about Dave growing up [“Oh, he was always banging his drum sticks around when he was young, on the dash board of the car, everywhere. Drove me crazy!”] and she wrote “You guys ROCK!” on the chalk board before she left for the day). There’s another band, A Sound of Thunder (I love A Sound Of Thunder – Rick), a female fronted Power Metal band, and I’m friends with Josh, great guitarist and great guy. He’s always helped me with advice on how to be successful, and I’m really thankful for that, because they are a fairly successful independent band. They have an impressive following! Although calling them Power Metal is a bit constrictive, they really have a unique and powerful style all their own. Nina performed a theremin solo when they played live Rams Head in Baltimore! They’ve been really supportive of us!

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

“Jump Off The Bridge…  And Live!!!” our debut EP is available on all major platforms from Jib Machine Records: Spotify, Amazon Music, YouTube Music, and if you’re broke just stream our EP video from our YouTube channel! (But maybe buy a shirt or shot glass from our MerchBucket, too?!)  Despite the dark album title, there is actually a funny story behind the title. I used to play college basketball, and a teammate and good friend of mine, Kenny, and I were joking with each other about our musical tastes. I was hassling him about listening to Usher and smooth R&B before games (that slow, romantic soulful stuff), to get hyped. He responded with “Well, your music is so dark and angry! It’s like, “I’m going to jump off a bridge…and Live!!””. I always remembered that story and years later wrote a song about it, and it became the album title. I reconnected with Kenny on Facebook, years later, and told him that story. He loved it! One another note, we also just released a song on a Nihlistics tribute, covering ‘No Friends’. The Nihlistics are an old punk band from New York, where Germ is from. They just signed to Jib Machine, as well, and the tribute album is coming out this summer! It’s an honour to be on a label with them. They were really helpful during the recording of the song.; Germ sung that one. He couldn’t figure out the lyrics and didn’t know they were negotiating with the label at the time, so he looked them up on Facebook to ask what the lyrics to ‘No Friends’ were, and they were totally cool and sent him back the lyrics.

‘Organ Doners’ (Official Lyric Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Oh God, we have some huge influences. Germ loves Pantera, the big 4 of thrash and most major thrash bands: Exodus, Overkill, Testament, Nuclear Assault. Huge Influences! There have been many influences along the way, and I was more into Iron Maiden, Nightwish, Dream Theater, really progressive melodic stuff. I got introduced to a lot of thrash, after meeting the guys in the band. Then I discovered Death, and Chuck Schuldiner absolutely amazed me, especially with his later material before he passed; it was so technical and progressive! After Germ joined, I got him into Opeth, Nightwish and Mastodon. He got me into Fear Factory, DRI, Suicidal Tendencies, and Nuclear Assault.

What first got you into music?

A few things. When I was a kid, I remember driving around in the backseat of my parents’ car listening to all sorts of classic rock. Later, it was the local radio stations and MTV, especially Headbangers Ball. It was so cool to see these bands I couldn’t find anywhere else. When Germ went to college, he became a DJ at the radio station and did the metal show. Additionally, a friend of his there started up a magazine, and he and two of his friends did all the metal CD reviews, concert reviews and interviews. It was awesome, great experience in Florida in the 90’s during the height of the death metal scene! I discovered rock in 5th grade; some kid had brought in Bush – Sixteen Stone, and I got inspired to pick up a guitar and replicate that sound. I was also playing alto saxophone at the time, and played baritone sax through my freshman year of high school. After that, I quit to focus on learning guitar, bass, drums, singing, etc. I kind of fell into Nu-Metal in high school, and discovered heavy metal like Iron Maiden and Black Sabbath after that; it was a progression! After high school, I became a music instructor for B&B Music Lessons, which got me gas and textbook money during college, and kept me afloat during the recession in the 2010’s when I graduated and looked around for a job. Teaching for them, tearing around NOVA in rush hour traffic on my motorcycle, going house to house with a travel guitar on my back and teaching kids piano and guitar, was an amazing experience that I’ll never forget.

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

Germ said Gwar! He wants to be a guest musician at a Gwar show and then have them slaughter him afterwards. If I personally could collaborate with anyone, I’d love to work with Opeth, Nightwish, or Ghost Bath; they just write such incredible music! I play rhythm guitar, so I don’t mind backing up anybody that I can keep up with, haha. I’m friends with Dennis from Ghost Bath, and been to a couple of their shows in Richmond, VA. He’s an incredible musician, and such a driven guy, but he’s always made time to talk with me about music and life. I’d be honoured to open for them anywhere, anytime. (I think Germ secretly wishes he was Mike Portnoy.)

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

All of them! Festivals all awesome! Probably Maryland Deathfest, a Monster Energy Music Festival,  Hellfest, or DEFINITELY 70000Tons of Metal! The opportunity to play in front of all those people and with all those great bands, then hang out with them. I’d love to hit the festival circuit. You know, the big European Metal shows, not the county festivals where Hootie and the Blowfish or BTO play.

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

From a fan? Nothing. Although Germs running joke is that one year, he got index cards for Christmas. Actually, that’s not a joke, it really happened. Sorry, no fans have ever given us anything other their cheers and applause, and a weird girl walked over to me to grace me with her attention, grabbing and admiring my Meshuggah t-shirt at a Rings of Saturn concert. We love the fans, its great hanging out with people and other bands at shows, and talking to/meeting new people over Instagram or Facebook.

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

Support underground music, never stop, never give up. Don’t let the scene die!

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

I’d be intrigued to see what Jimi Hendrix would be doing if he was still with us. Kurt Cobain too, he was such an amazing song writer, I have to wonder what he would be writing now with the perspective of many years behind him. But hands down Dimebag Darrell Abbott. He was such a personable guy, and I have no shortage of second hand stories from buddies I know who were fortunate enough to meet him in person.

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

I love the creativity, it’s such a great cathartic self-expression of my darker emotions, fear, anxiety, aggression, depression. The tools, hardware, and software available to write and record these days are so readily available and affordable to musicians, now! You can spend as much time as you want (or can) working on music! The downside…the music business is tough. Streaming, as a fan is really awesome to access all the music you could never afford to buy, as an artist, you really don’t make anything from it. And the recording process, grinding out multiple rhythm guitar tracks, it’s definitely work, and a labour of love. I’m not a great guitar player; I’ll spend 2 hours looping a single 2 measure lick at half speed in Guitar Pro, trying to get it down. It can be very frustrating, and has forced me to work on my patience and anxiety.

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

Tough call, I can’t say go back to the way it was, because I believe in progress. Music and entertainment will evolve no matter what anyone does and it can’t be stopped. How the Millennials and Generation Alpha gets music today is way different then how we did. Germ has kids, he said they just don’t hang out and listen to music like we did. They get it all through devices and headphones (none of our giant speakers anymore!) or as part of another medium for entertainment, i.e., songs embedded as part of a video, or a game or show or something. So, I’m not saying go back to the old way, but the music industry as a whole, and there are exceptions, hasn’t adapted to modern entertainment very well. The record industry really screwed up, and blew its opportunity to get out ahead of file sharing and MP3s. And in hindsight, Lars was right; file sharing and piracy are still a huge issue, and it costs musicians and record labels millions of dollars a year. Bands today are basically t-shirt salespeople, as a result. They make money mostly on merch, and playing shows, not record sales.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Germ says Pantera, “Far Beyond Driven”; he can still crank that album all the way up!  He’s an avid runner, several of the songs from that album are in his running playlists. I’d have to say Iced Earth – “Horror Show”, and then Death – “The Sound of Perseverance”. Those albums were my gateway to heavier power metal and later Death Metal.

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

Honestly, I’ve totally adapted to streaming. I listen to music these days 99% of the time on YouTube Music, and my wife has Spotify. It’s definitely pros and cons; if the wireless connection is weak, I lose access, and of course if a server crashes, there goes your digital stream…but that’s where we are now.  “Jump Off the Bridge…And Live!!!” was released as a digital album as a result of this. Germ loves having his whole collection right at his finger-tips, and his collection is extensive…When my hard drive crashed, years ago, it took out a 40Gb collection of mine…I still have a small vinyl collection that I’ll play from time to time, though. I stopped collecting CD’s years ago, and only buy them from local bands at shows to show my love and support. Playlists are the best invention ever. Germ doesn’t miss having his CD’s scratched or melted in the car, and I don’t miss having the CD player not play it in the morning in the middle of a harsh NOVA winter because it’s too cold when the car starts up and the player won’t read the disk, or Germ pulling his tapes out of the tape player after it gets chewed up. Scratched records! He does have a few albums though that sounded better on the original analogue medium, old punk records for example.

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

We played with a Baltimore thrash band called Omnislash at a small bar named Addy’s in Manassas, VA. Those guys are awesome and everyone reading this should check them out. They were really supportive of us, they stuck around for our set at 2AM, and they were totally into it! That was actually our 2nd show and they told us we sounded fantastic. They couldn’t believe it was only our second show ever. That was by far the most fun Germ ever had at a show. My personal favourite happened at a restaurant (that closed down afterward) named The Black Cat, in Alexandria. It was on July 13th, the night before my birthday, and many of my friends from the NOVA music scene made it out to support us and wear their Darkening Skies shirts. Most of A Sound of Thunder was there, and I got selfies with Josh and Nina. It was an emotional night for me, I thought I played the best I ever had, live, and it was one of our last shows before I took off for San Diego. With the pandemic, shows are starting up again, and one day I’d like to get on the road with Germ in a beat up van, travelling the West Coast, taking whore’s baths in gas station restroom sinks, etc. haha.

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

Well, I’m a special education teacher, and it’s just a path I followed by chance. I have a real passion for it; the service I do is incredibly fulfilling. It, of course, pays for my musical career, but takes up a lot of personal time and energy that I have to prioritize over music right now, unfortunately. Germ would  love to be a writer, and get into writing movie scripts.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Well, it would have to be someone who could cook, because I sure can’t. My wife is an incredible chef, she does it professionally, and would take care of the whole table with ease. Germ wants Gordon Ramsey. I would just sit there drinking and eating while I watch them work the kitchen. I’d say I’d want dinner with a bunch of dead people: Jesus, Jimi Hendrix, Dimebag, and then maybe Robert Downey Jr., and definitely Ryan Reynolds. The dude is hilarious.

What’s next for the band?

Great question! I moved to San Diego shortly before we got signed. We had over 50 songs written, and we both didn’t want to throw that away. We decided to do all our work online and share it with the world 100% digitally. We use tools like Guitar Pro to collaborate and write music (that’s why your music teacher tells you to learn to read music kids!). We also have a studio in Germ’s basement for recording. I’m house hunting right now, and plan to contract to build a badass studio in MY basement, next year. So, what’s next?  We’re going to promote the hell out of this album first, and we have a few lyric videos in the works that you’re going to love.  We have some merch ideas that will come out later on our MerchBucket, at www.merchbucket.com/collections/darkening-skies.
We’re mastering a special song for the holidays right now, and that will be out by Hanukah. Our next EP, “Demon Core”, will hopefully be out next winter. We’re going to take our time and get the recording the way we like it, then eventually have it produced and release the next album. I can tell you right now that the production and sound quality will blow our current EP out of the water. We’re more experienced with tracking, signal paths, etc., and Jib Machine Records has an amazing sound engineer, Brandon, who is gonna take care of us next year.

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

Twitter and Instagram are our most active. Youtube for official videos. We have a Facebook page, but really haven’t seen much activity on that platform lately.
www.facebook.com/DarkeningSkies
www.twitter.com/Darkening_Skies
www.instagram.com/drkngskies/
www.youtube.com/user/DarkeningSkiesBand/videos

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Um, yeah, I have no idea what that is. I’m kind of a bagel or English muffin guy.

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

First, thank you so much for interviewing us! There are a billion bands promoting their creative works on social media, and we’re honoured to receive your attention. Thank you for your time as well! We really appreciate you supporting us! I think what you are doing is great! You’re supporting bands who are working hard and love what they do. Please keep doing it! Please support local and independent bands these days as much as you can! Kids, take the time and have the patience to learn a musical instrument; it will change your life.

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 TERRORFORM

Terrorform Logo

EMQ’s with TERRORFORM

Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with San Antonio, Texas based Groove/Thrash Metal band, Terrorform. Huge thanks to guitarist/vocalist, Case Rodriguez, 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?

Case Rodriguez. Guitar/vocals. We’ve officially been around for over 3 years with this current line-up, originally, it’d been our singer Leo and I…and then our good friend Zach filled in on drums and then my nephews ended up taking the throne for Guitar and Bass when the time came…and we’ve been golden ever since.

Sick bunch here, man! I love these guys man, they’re such great musicians.

How did you come up with your band name?

At first, we were using a project name “Zero To Death” when it came time to debut live Terrorform became the name. Terrorform had been shot around once or twice and in the end that’s what we became.

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

We originate from the American Midwest, The Texas Gulf Coast. Our scene is beautiful, you can catch a variety of heavy hitting metal and rock bands where we come from. We have the Gulf-Coast-Thrash and it’s coming together strongly. Last GCT show we played the energy was real, the pit was live, guitars were smashed and everything was alright. Texas metal and rock is great man!

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

We have just released our brand new single ‘Intruder’ through PACgroove Records. Check it out on YouTube, Spotify and iTunes.

‘Intruder’ (Official Visualiser)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Hard to say, we have A LOT of influences going on.

Personally, Death and Megadeth have always peaked in my influence. I also love Jazz!

What first got you into music?

I was born and raised in the metal and rock family. It wasn’t until this one time I was 9 years old, my sister and I switched bedrooms and she’d left a “KISS Greatest Hits” in my new room, I put it in the Batman-Stereo and within 5 seconds my entire life was changed by a simple bass line.

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

I wish we could get Dani Rabin from, fusion-jazz-rock band, Marbin to play a solo on one of our groovier songs. Lol, that’d be something else.

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

The “Hell and Heaven” fest in Mexico sounds like a damn good time.

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

Somebody else’s guitar pick! Im guessing it was more of thank you token, for them to give it to me. I have it in my wallet for when I have to one day battle the Beelzebub in a rock-off!

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

Stay tuned is all! We’ve got a lot around the corner…lots of new music! Fast. Heavy. Tricky. Groovy. Shredding!

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

Well, there’s a lot of people I wish I could bring back, music wise, It’s between Dime and Hendrix. I can’t imagine witnessing something so surreal.

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

The art of it. It actually takes magic to bring music to life…especially live. Sometimes I wonder if music collaboration and composing is a rare phenomenon in the universe. Whatever it is we eventually figured it out and are here because of it.

Only thing I hate, is not being able to be even more of a musician than I already am.

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

Streaming, they can at least give us a penny per stream and not 1/3 of a penny. There should be better reception for these types of things. Without music there’s no streaming platforms. I’m sure there is way to make those ends meet just a little more than they BARELY already do.

Buy your favourite bands CD’s, Merch and vinyl!

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Adolescents – Self titled “Blue Album”. KILLER ALBUM front to back!

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

Everything has its pros and cons. Vinyl is magic.

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

We’ve played A LOT of really memorable shows small or large. I’d have to say it was back in 2018 when we first started and opened for DOYLE (Misfits guitarist). Because of another bands error we ended up being direct support.

At the start of our set, it was like “Who are you guys?” and towards the end of our set the crowd’s reaction was immense and overwhelming.

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

I wish and still want to pursue being a Voice-Over Artist for animated productions, cartoons and anime.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

My band and best bud/crewman Lol.

What’s next for the band?

New EP coming real soon! All that follows with a new release. Music videos, new artwork merch etc. We want to come to your town! Hook us up with your local fastest and grooviest and we’ll show up to throw down!

We are working ahead planning an even further releases. Might be just a single, another EP or Full length. Time will tell on that one.

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

www.facebook.com/TerrorFTX
www.instagram.com/terrorformtx/
www.terrorformtx.bandcamp.com/
www.open.spotify.com/artist/1yV5uyS0DOeGrRYNWJX5Ky
www.youtube.com/channel/UC-cWMOml9GK1UnY-Rhv2v5A

Listen to our music on iTunes and good streaming services.

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Why not both? Hahaha. You could say the same for Terrorform.

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

THANK YOU SO MUCH to all our followers and listeners. I can’t say that enough…in due time I hope you’ll dig what we’ve planned to further release. I hope to see the entire world someday.

Terrorform 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.

Ravager – The Third Attack

The Third Attack Album Cover Art

Ravager – The Third Attack
Iron Shield Records
Release Date: 18/06/2021
Running Time: 41:48
Review by Simon Black
9/10

A long time ago, I remember sitting in the office of Skyclad’s management team up in Newcastle having a chat about the state of music here in the UK and globally. At the time Grunge was still ripping a new asshole through the major labels, who in a panic at missing out on the newest trend to some unknown independent labels, were busy tearing up their rosters to make room for anyone with a lumberjack shirt and lank neck length hair. Many Thrash and Metal bands got hung out to dry in those dark days. However, it was not all gloom and doom and I was told clearly and categorically that day that “If Thrash and Metal are dead, then someone better tell the Germans”. He was right, as here we are, nearly twenty-five years later and Thrash is very much still going strong, having never gone away and continuing to pull in new fans across the generations, with the obscure independent Metal supporting labels of the day having proven to be absolutely right, given that most of them are still here and plenty more have sprung up since. It’s not just the veterans who are still cranking the goods out in spectacular fashion right now (as the recent Artillery record proved), but the torch has been carried forward to much younger acts, of whom I’m going to single out the UK’s Incinery and the spotlight band of the moment – Ravager. When, as here, they get it right, they do so by balancing the energy and ethos of the past with the modern sound and focus of today.

These guys are Walsrode in Northern Germany based, which is North East from Hamburg as you head in the direction of Wacken’s hallowed lands and have been on the go since 2014. “The Third Attack” is, as you would expect, their third full length album and is well named. Normally at this point, bands can struggle to keep the writing going having exhausted the material they had built up prior to getting released, but there’s no sign of this being the case here and in full-on attacking mode. In fact a quick spin through their Spotify highlights indicated that if anything the reverse is true, as this beast of a record is positively brimming with energy and guts. For me the title track, in its blisteringly short two and a bit minutes of delivery, absolutely nails the ethos of this band, but when they do take their time, they do it with aplomb and control, as the more measured album closer ‘Destroyer’ proves. At eight minutes long and with a deceptively measured power-balladic intro, it’s not what you expect after thirty-four minutes of ear-bleeding brutality, but it does not stay slow for long and unleashes a blisteringly tight and controlled display of technical thrashery. The control and flow keep changing, and it’s a masterwork in control and accuracy.

The production balances the old-school Thrash feel and immediacy with that nice fat and crunchy belt round the earholes that comes with modern production techniques and a producer who knows what the hell they are doing. It’s far from over-polished, but the balance it has keeps the energy and aggression fuelled nicely, as frankly too much polish and you lose that edge that is the essence of good Thrash. And this isn’t just good Thrash, this is great Thrash.

‘Planet Hate (Official Lyric Video)

TRACKLISTING:
01. Intruders
02. Planet Hate
03. Back To The Real World
04. Priest Of Torment
05. A Plague Is Born
06. The Third Attack
07. Beyond Reality
08. My Own Worst Enemy
09. King Of Kings
10. Destroyer

LINE-UP:
Marcel Lehr – Guitars
Dario Rosenberg – Guitars
Philip Herbst – Vocals
Justus Mahler – Bass
André Sawade – Drums

LINKS:

Ravager 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.