BETRAYER F.T.M. “No Life Till Fury” (2010)

May 7, 2012 § Leave a comment

Reviewed by Dylan Raine

Artist: Betrayer F.T.M.
Album: No Life Till Fury
Label: Violent Records
Year: 2010

1. Machine
2. One Day Of Fury
3. To Kill or Die
4. La Orden Del Caos
5. Midnight Poison
6. No Life Till Fury
7. Infernal Metal
8. Caught By Hatred
9. The Burning Road

As far as semi-growls and over complicated lyrics go, this band has  outshone them in every possible direction. With the music going from key metal stages of Maiden, Metallica, Judas Priest etc… You are left with no real uniqueness or quality that makes them any different from any other thrash band over the last 20 years.

With a mix between punk based riffs on the track ‘Midnight Poison’ to the heavy muted churning on ‘Machine’ and ‘Infernal Metal’ you really are left indifferent to the direction of this. With the use of far too many lyrics being crammed tightly into one chorus, things get a little edgy; this may have worked for Rap but not Thrash by any means. At times the music seems to get lost or even lag behind the vocals as if the metronome or drummer as he’s better known in today’s society cannot keep up with the vocals.

Although there are some heavy elements now and then and the thrash is good in certain songs, there really is nothing new or defining about this entire album.

4/10

For more information, please visit: http://myspace.com/betrayerftm

ENGEL “Blood Of Saints” (2012)

May 5, 2012 § Leave a comment

Reviewed by Dylan Raine

Artist: Engel
Album: Blood of SaintsLabel: Seasons of Mist
Date of Release: 18th May 2012

1. Question Your Place
2. Frontline
3. Feel Afraid
4. Numb
5. Cashking
6. One Good Thing
7. Blood of Saints
8. Down to Nothing
9. Drama Queen
10. In Darkness

Engel who have up-to-date released 2 previous albums, done numerous tours and gigs with bands such as Arch Enemy, Pain, Paradise Lost and Atreyu, but to name a few, are set to release their 3rd album unto us come the 18th May 2012. So what do we expect to hear from them? Well, if you have heard any of their previous albums th
We start this album with an explosion of forces that I can’t even try to explain. Throw this together a mixture of effects with a raw heaviness of guitars before Klavborn starts, leaves chills running through you. ‘Question Your Place’ is an exceptional first track to get you ready for the rest. ‘Feel Afraid’ is “one of those” tracks you’ll find yourself humming to yourself for many days after hearing it. With the very catchy start and chorus sections, not forgetting the little melodic quirks throughout. The combination between the power in the drums and everything else really keeps you tuned into this all the way. With the mid breakdown into the solo section everything is very well executed taking the music into another realm. ‘Cashking’ has one of “those” strange starts you’d expect to be placed elsewhere, perhaps in another genre altogether, however as you progress into the track you realise nothing else could have made it better than this. With the combination between the growls and screams in ‘Blood of Saints’ and the melodies flowing back and forth, this is another extraordinary track within itself.en you’ll know that there is a basis of “No Limitations” thrown into their tracks and their style and if you expect that then you’re set for this!

The album is absolutely crammed with so many fantastic combinations of melodies, hooks, vocal combinations, effects, guitar solos, and progressions to keep you hooked. ‘Journeys End’ is another brilliant track to gently take you to the end of what for me has been an amazing album.


Melodic/Industrial Metal at its best!9/10

Line-up:
Magnus Klavborn – vocals
Niclas Engelin – guitars
Marcus Sunesson – guitars

Steve Drennan – bass
Jimmy Olausson – drums


For more information, please visit:

www.engelpropaganda.com

www.facebook.com/Engel.Propaganda

NO PLACE FOR HEROES “No Place For Heroes” (2011)

May 5, 2012 § Leave a comment

Reviewed by Dylan Raine

Artist: No Place For Heroes
Album: No Place For Heroes
Label: Independent (Self Released)
Year: 2011
Produced by: NPFH
Mixed by: Krang Team

1. Ready to Fall
2. Kill Da Disco
3. Surrender
4. The Unit
5. Sound Disease
6. The March
7. How long to be a man
8. (Dis)United Nations

Haunting mid-tempos chasing up a heavy beat with bass driven insanity on the first intro of ‘Ready to Fall’ is quite exciting to say the least. With the high speed picking and wah effects this song musically is extraordinary, add to that then the vocal passages between the growling and chorus based gentler ranges and you have so many great elements and modulations going on here. With the body moving tempos and beats you get through the tracks you are always going for a good ride with this.

As you enter ‘Surrender’ with the magnificent vocals and ambient textures leading your mind into a false sense of security with the warm phrasing and obscure hypnotising features it’s very easy to mistake this band for something other than what they actually are. Pure brilliance and richness is shown throughout this track without the need for ridiculousness.

As you go through the music, it not only gets heavier, but technically… better! With strong guitar techniques and drums to destroy the “Average” experience this is fantastic to hear. The vocals constantly changing from ambient dreamscapes like that in ‘Sound Disease’ and ‘The Unit’.

From Funky bass lines to heavy guitars and hypnotising vocals which are all being chased by the most obscure drums and effects to keep you on this crazy road. This album is far more than you could expect!

10/10

Will Maurer – Vocals/Guitar
Emile Tempere – Bass/Vocals
Germain Desprès – Drums
Olivier L’Heureux – Lead Guitar

“Surrender” – Official Music Video:

www.noplaceforheroes.com
www.myspace.com/npfhmusic
www.facebook.com/npfhmusic
www.youtube.com/npfhmusic

BACK FROM ASHES “261” (2010)

May 5, 2012 § Leave a comment

Reviewed by Dylan Raine

Artist: Back from Ashes
Album: 261
Label: Self-released/independent
Year: 2010

1. Seed
2. The Suffering Within
3. Tightrope
4. Truth
5. When you Fall

This 5 track album combines wonderful expressions between orchestral introductions, Rich textured music and powerfully expressive vocals.
The first track on the album ‘Seed’ which starts with the most wonderful echo effected lead vocals not too far from Radioheads ‘Creep’ but with a bit more expression and textural feeling. As you progress into the tracks the vocals really open up into a mass of super-rich textures and emotions with a jump between soft melancholy vocals to a fast chopped growling madness of sheer terror back and forth. ‘Tightrope’ uses multiple expressions of vocal changes, whilst the music goes in and between high speed riffs and chugs to heavily muted breakdowns and time signature changes. Very exciting music!

L’ENDEVI’ “An Eternity” (2012)

May 5, 2012 § Leave a comment

Reviewed by Dylan Raine

Artist: L’endevi
Album: An Eternity
Label: Art Gates Records
Release Date: March 2012

1. Gold
2. Red ivy
3. An eternity
4. Laments for loners
5. Slug
6. We are the metal
7. My crow
8. Silent enemy
9. The hole
10. Unjust unnatural deaths
11. The maze

‘L’Endeví‘ the Spanish Goth/Rock Metal band is hitting up a storm with their latest album ‘An Eternity’ which is out now. With their heavy use of beautifully created effects in the intro to the song ‘Gold’ with the sythns creating a dreamscape atmosphere I can see why this band is making big impressions everywhere they go. Into the main section of the track and the music becomes very dark with very expressive punk-esq vocals driving this piece of madness alongside the chops of the guitars. The song flows to and fro between gentle sections and heavy passages whilst remaining technically intricate and highly hypnotising if not enticing to the listener. As you move into ‘Red ivy’ the vocals seem to get more and more aggressive and powerful beyond anything else, with the backing screams and growls mixed with the effects is simply haunting. Powerful music with heavy guitars, powerful drums, and yet the ending was pitiful; however the song had some really great features to it.
As you progress through the tracks you’ll eventually get to the really expressive ‘Slug’ with the fantastic use of leading melody lines to keeps this piece of music flowing constantly throughout.
Into ‘Silent enemy’ which is just simply beautiful in every sense of the word, with the gentle use of vocals and orchestral compositions from the string sections with the clean guitars leading all the way. As the track progresses and the beat kicks in, the vocals keep to a gentle yet affirmative sense.  The music slowly gets heavier with some really clever layering and sequences taking you into an entirely different aspect, whilst increasing your view on everything else.

From a heavy madness to super-rich clean passages and the most enticing vocals ever to be placed in a single setting, this album encapsulates all the elements of a really great album and as you leave the last track with a final clarity from ‘The maze’ you can see why I played the whole thing again.

9/10

An Eternity Tour 2012

10/03/2012 Old School (Murcia)
24/03/2012 Trincheras Rock Fest (Sarrión)
01/04/2012 Nouveau Casino (París)
06/04/2012 Fata Morgana (Gandia)
21/04/2012 Haemorrage Emetic Club (Castellón)
27/04/2012 Perro Verde Rock bar (Requena)
04/05/2012 Sala Durango (Valencia)
12/05/2012 Sala Audio Rock (Madrid)
30/06/2012 Metalarium (Badajoz)

www.facebook.com/pages/LENDEVI/74146922282
www.myspace.com/lendevi
www.lendevi.com

TOMMY VITALY “Hanging Rock” (May 2012)

May 5, 2012 § Leave a comment

Reviewed by Dylan Raine

Tracklist:
1.    Betrayer
2.    Run with the Devil
3.    Hands of Time
4.    Forever Lost
5.    Idol
6.    Misanthropy
7.    Heavy Metal God
8.    Hanging Rock
9.    Icewarrior

Let me introduce you to the guitar virtuoso known as Tommy Vitaly. He has become one of the greatest Neo-Classical guitarists of his time and continues to astound and influence many young and old guitarists all over the world today.

The Italian guitarist has expanded the possibilities of the guitar with his study and knowledge of the classical era, and the works of Yngwie J. Malmsteen and Johann Sebastian Bach. Alongside this knowledge, Vitaly’s technical ability of Super-speed Alternative Picking, Sweeping, Tapping, and Legato use has made his soloing as powerful as some of the best guitarists on the planet today. With his Fender Stratocaster in hand, and the much popularised scalloped frets, he combines Power Metal, Neo-Classical Metal, Blues, and Jazz in his music as well as modernised fusion. His uncompromised method of accuracy is perfectly astonishing as is his gentle use of effects greatly encompassing his music into the powerful, passionate melodies that they are today.

When describing him to others, I would be inclined to say that he is ‘Not’ just another guitarist showing off, or playing neo-classical music at a whim; he is however, and has, been put among the ever growing list of many great guitarists. If you appreciate the musical styles of Yngwie Malmsteen, Steve Vai, Rob Marchello, Stephen Ross, and Paul Gilbert, then you are sure to love these works and the music of Tommy Vitaly.

His latest album “Hanging Rock” which is due out May 2012 encompasses all his much perfected tone and precision, as well as his thorough understanding of music.

Upon entering the album we are given high octane riffs with harmonic melody vocals panned between left and right. Into the first solo on “Betrayer” and you are taken into the neo-classical elements of Malmsteen with diminished arpeggio sweeps, speed picking and scale runs. “Run with the devil” has the Iron Maiden feel to it, which seeing as they are a huge inspiration for Vitaly I’d be surprised not to hear a few little licks here and there. Technically the track is well pieced together; I think it just lacks originality and substance as at any time you could be listening to Maiden or Malmsteen. At one point I actually thought I was!
Onto, track 3 “Hands of Time” is a great solid track full of little melody lines and licks keeping things together. With the high speed verse picking, into the tapping sequence taking you to the very catchy chorus is very entertaining. We are then given a blast of diminished scale runs and sweep arpeggios again, into faster shredding before coming back to the chorus and inevitably the end. ‘Forever Lost’ starts with an such an exotic melody line making you feel you’re going into something high octane, but no, there’s a twist, you’re taken into an acoustic track, with very expressive vocals. This is very “E.L.O (Electric Light Orchestra), Pink Floyd” and as you enter the solo’s you could actually be watching or listening to Gilmore himself. Such a fantastic track!

‘Idol’ starts with an almost “Adrian Smith” signature lick only slightly modified to take you away from it. The vocals, although very powerful get lost behind the backing vocals as there seems to be way too much delay in the backing vocals masking everything else. Into the solo’s, by now we should almost expect to hear the sweep arpeggios and yes, we do. Although very well presented, they do tend to follow an almost identical line to the last 3 solo’s we’ve heard. The Yngwie combination between keys and shred guitars work to a degree although the backing track seems to just lose any expression at this point including the drums. The song ends with an anthem-esq outro, which I rather enjoyed with the finger picked playing out and the bass gently taking you to somewhere new. ‘Misanthropy’ has such a beautiful start; using the Spanish guitar and finger picking this intro is simply divine.  A mix between harpsichord and super-effective slide soloing into the most beautiful echo based chamber and delay effect bends and holds just took my breath away. If you’ve ever heard “Marooned” by Pink Floyd, this isn’t far off. We’re then given a lick that in my opinion is so overused by neo-classical guitarist luckily not for long, then back into the exceptional soloing once again. For an instrumental track this is by far the most expressive track on the album. ‘Hanging Rock’ has such an inventive array of sounds and effects from the Harmonizer to the Octavier, with a melody line which was in my head for days. The pianos have warm rich characteristics to them giving off a gentle texture feeling to it. Another instrumental track which incorporates fast Shredding, Tapping, Sweeping, Synth/Guitar switches. Just wished it went on a little longer. The last track on the album is ‘Icewarrior’ which immediately left me with the feeling of “Wasted Years” by Iron Maiden. A very melodic track with loads of technical intricacies, great use of drums, and finally the backing vocals work.

Keep an eye out for Vitaly as he is on his way up to becoming a much appreciated guitar hero among guitar players and music lovers alike.

8/10

TOMMY VITALY “Hanging Rock” new album teaser video

Line up
Tommy Vitaly – guitars, piano, keyboards
Andrea “Tower” Torricini – bass
Kenny “Rhino” Earl – drums

Vocalists:
Mats Leven on track 1
Carsten “Lizard” Schulz on tracks 2 and 7
Todd LaTorre on track 3
David Defeis on track 4
Michele Luppi on track 5
Zak Stevens on track 9

Special guest solos

Norifumi Shima guitar solos on track 5
David Shankle guitar solo on track 7
Ferdy Doernberg keyboard solos on tracks 5 and 8

Equipment

Guitars:
Fender USA vintage ’70 (Scalloped)
Fender Strat YJM
Schecter Hellraiser
Chet Atkins classical

Pedals:
DODYJM overdrive
BOSS NS-2

Amps:
Engl Fireball
Splawn “Competition” head

Guitar Picks:
1mm Ibanez Paul Gilbert

Endorsements:
Splawn

Official website: www.tommyvitaly.com

 

THUNDERSTICK “Echoes” (2011)

May 5, 2012 § Leave a comment

Reviewed by Dylan Raine

Artist: Thunderstick
Album: Echoes
Label: Heaven & Hell Records
Release Date: October 25th 2011

For those who may not be familiar with the infamous Barry ‘Thunderstick’ Graham he played a leading role in the infancy of the New Wave of British Heavy Metal in the late 1970s. After a brief stint in Iron Maiden, Barry traded spots with drummer Clive Burr to set on the throne behind scene forerunners Samson. After three albums and a number of singles with Samson, Thunderstick would break out of his cage in search of his own vision.

Inspired by Rocky Horror Picture Show, Alice Cooper, and Hammer films the Thunderstick band was born in 1981. By 1983 the N.W.O.B.H.M was quickly coming to an end when the band’s debut EP ‘Feel Like Rock ‘n’ Roll?’ was released. The following year the full length ‘Beauty and the Beasts’ was released. Still with a fair amount of exposure it seemed that a female fronted poppy rock band with a vampiric glam image was suspended in twilight with audiences. The Thunderstick band would not live a long life afterwards but the legend of Thunderstick the man, would live on.

The music is full of little jumping sections to make you move with it. Combining hard rock and the early sound of British heavy Metal, this album encapsulates and brings forth a flurry of chops, gallops, and fiery anthems for your total enjoyment.

01. Heartbeat (in the night)
02. Rich Girls (Don’t Cry)
03. In the Name of the Father (Echoes from the Analogue Asylum
04. Long Way to Go
05. Contact Angel
06. Afraid of the Dark
07. Another Turnaround
08. Feel like Rock ‘n’ Roll
09. Alecia
10. Runaround
11. Buried Alive
12. Heartbeat (in the night) instrumental version
13. Afraid of the Dark instrumental version
14. You Get Me in Pieces (Love Letter to Jack)
15. Feel like Rock ‘n’ Roll (alt demo version)
16. Long way to go (Reprise)

Thunderstick is:
Jodee Valentine- vocals
Wango Wiggins- Guitars
Cris Martin- Guitars
Thunderstick- Drums
Ben K. Reeve- Bass

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