It might be the first time ever that I would only need three words to describe an album. And these three words are Traditional Heavy Metal. So despite one of the most extensive press information efforts ever, this is going to be a short one.
Corners Of Sanctuary (COS) are a 4 piece band from the USA and pride themselves in being old school. This is already their 4th album, yet the first one I heard. And for me it is a tough ride. The sound is thick, bordering into muddy and old school indeed. The music is strictly sticking to their beliefs, no surprises. True metal as it were.
So if traditional heavy metal is your thing, you will probably dig this a lot. Me, I prefer more adventure and diversity.
German musician Mat Sinner has his fingers and songs in a lot of bands. But Sinner the band is of course his own vehicle. And anyone with that much experience should be able to deliver the goods. And if Heavy Metal, German style, is your thing, than this is a band to check out. Vocally reminding me of country mates Rage, musically of numerous others. Melodic, plenty of hooks and riffs, and on this version even the obligatory Thin Lizzy cover (Baby Please Don´t Go). Other bonuses are 2 videos.
For me a solid release, yet a bit by the numbers. But in a genre where conforming to the style is almost holy, you could do worse I suppose. A lot of people will love this, for me it is a bit on the safe side. But it is enjoyable and fine music to party to. So, referring to the beginning of this post, Mat does deliver!
In the crowded Heavy Metal scene it is tough for any band to really stick out. Part because the hard core fans don´t want their favourites to get too creative.
So a band has to keep in mind what their fans want. And yet, sometimes they will feel the need to explore a little bit. If a band succeeds in bringing in other elements while still staying true to the desired format, that can be seen as an achievement in itself. And I think that is what can be said about some songs on this album.
For the most part Heavenly play songs with the usual trademarks of the genre. They play them with panache and attitude, so the songs stick and really hit home. What for people like me is a bonus, is that they obviously have enough confidence to throw in some new things. Like the title track, where metal is combined with dance like drums, giving it a little industrial feel and especially the Gothic choirs which really add spookiness to the song. Other elements are neo-classical instrumental parts and orchestrations.
To conclude, an album that will appeal not only to style addicts, but can attract others as well. Great job!
Slowly I am completing my Jorn album collection. He sometimes releases them at such a speed that my wallet can´t keep up. In an earlier post I already mentioned Jorn ranks among my favourite vocalists of all time. His voice is reminiscent of greats like Dio, Coverdale and so on. Still he has been able to create his own identity and is recognisable on impact.
This is another solo album in the now known Jorn style. That is heavy metal, influenced by Black Sabbath, Thin Lizzy (Phil Lynott is featured in the booklet) and so on. With his sidekicks Jorn Viggo Lofsted and Tore Moren on guitars, Sid Ringsby on bass and Willy Bendiksen on drums, this is another damn fine slab of melodic metal at it´s best.
It really is of little use to explore into songs. Suffice to say this is 9 songs you will enjoy. And if you are not familiar with Jorn, creep out of under that stone and familiarize yourself. You know you want to…
In short I guess you could describe this as a dash of Accept, some AC/DC, a little Shakra for good measure and to round it off a tiny bit of Mac (ex-Threshold).
This is mostly in your face metal, fists high and head banging. Sometimes a little keyboards, but emphasis on guitars (like you´d expect otherwise). Though nothing shocking new or complicated, I must admit I kinda like this album. Just a nice collection of songs to have a party to. So invite your friends, buy some six packs of beer, and raise the volume. Metaaallllll (…high creaming voice with double bass thumping along…) 😉
Personal play tips: Rise With Me, Come Alive, What Burns In Their Eyes.
The first 2 albums from Avenged Sevenfold were a bit too metalcore for me. But since their third release City Of Evil, things have been improving to these ears, with this album being some kind of chocolate cake. And hey, I just happen to really like chocolate…
Several songs from this 2007 release have been on heavy video rotation paving the way for the boys to a bigger market, and they deserve it. Despite references to Christian themes (for instance the band name relates to the Bible book of Genesis), the band deny they want to influence people, it´s all entertainment.
And entertain they do. To me the mix of excellent and powerful heavy metal guitar riffs and soloing akin to NWOBHM bands, aggressive and also soulful vocals (with that little rough edge for extra sizzle) and melodies, with that sense of urgency common to modern bands, really sets my audio system on fire. And these boys are not afraid to experiment with other moods as well as Gunslinger and album closer Dear God, so expertly disclose. The latter being one of the most beautiful tracks I have heard in recent years…
A heartily recommended album which makes curious for the new release Nightmare (which partly deals with the tragic and unexpected loss of drummer The Rev).
Personal play tips: Almost Easy, Afterlife, Dear God.
It is fairly simple to describe this: HEAVY METAL! Yeah, if the New Wave Of British Heavy Metal did not pass you by unnoticed, then I guess this is straight up your alley. In fact this sounds so 100% textbook proof, it is scary. This is galloping drums, blistering guitar solo´s, heavy riffing in typical style, and vocals wailing melodies like a werewolf.
Don´t expect Crescent Shield to mess with other sounds, influences or styles. Forget experiments or cross over merging. No, they stay true to the formula and pull it off with class. If you grew up on this, you´ll love it. Others may find it limited.
So nothing more to tell about this really. Only a warning up front; this stuff will nest inside your system within a few plays and make you howl along…. just watch the stars…
Personal play tips: just hit play.