Montag, 30. Juli 2018

CLASSICK OF THE MONTH - JUNE 2018: ALL OUT WAR - "FOR THOSE WHO WERE CRUCIFIED"

CLASSICK OF THE MONTH - JUNE 2018:

ALL OUT WAR - "FOR THOSE WHO WERE CRUCIFIED" (1998)
(Running time: 49:08 minutes; 13 songs)
("Victory Records"; CD):

Tracklist:
(01.) "SOAKED IN TORMENT"
(02.) "BURNING SEASON"
(03.) "FOR THOSE WHO WERE CRUCIFIED"
(04.) "RESIST"
(05.) "CLAIM YOUR INNOCENCE"
(06.) "FALSE SALVATION"
(07.) "REDEMPTION FOR THE INNOCENT"
(08.) "WITNESS THE END"
(09.) "INTO THE FLAMES OF PROGRESSION"
(10.) "AFTER AUTUMN"
(11.) "ENEMIES OF CREATION"
(12.) "TRUTH IN THE AGE OF LIES"
(13.) "APOCALYPTIC TERROR"



Oh boy, is this very one here and now long, long overdue, god damn it, I sort of honestly nearly forgot about the still pending "CLASSICK OF THE MONTH" post in its "JUNE 2018" edition, yes, no other "story" behind it or what the hell else ever and so today there's no need for any further-going secundary smalltalk as an introduction here and now, yes, and so just let's go - better late than never, I guess.

This month I have something… okay... I have again something damn great for you. We will stay like the last past three months before this very one here also in the world of (1990's) Hardcore musick and this time we will take a trip to New York and to be more precise to Newburgh, New York and I or we or how-ever will pay and give respect and honour via this tribute to a back then and of course still today to/for me very special and important band  and this band is none other than the almighty ALL OUT WAR and here and now it will be all about their outstanding chunk of pure hatred titled "FOR THOSE WHO WERE CRUCIFIED" from back then in 1998, yes, released via the then damn mighty "VICTORY RECORDS" on CD as well as on LP. (I have the CD version and so all here and now will be about this very one.) Back then in the glorious 1990's 'things' were getting heavier and harder and simply more and more devastating in Hardcore with a lot of bands back then starting massively to incorporate more and more and/or maybe (just) more prominent than before more or less 'style-foreign elements' from for example Crust and Grind but also Rap/Hip Hop and also especially Metal into their style'n'sound with for example 'stuff' like Holy Terror Hardcore, Metallic Hardcore, more and more metalized NYHC, new School Straight Edge Hardcore and then some day also first real proper Metalcore like we know it today all too well appearing stronger and stronger and time after time more often and again  even more often on the scene and latest from the middle of the 1990's this all happened far more frequently again and again, especially (or at least) in my 'retrospective-percepetion' with sort of experiencing this development first-hand and discovering a huge load of great bands and records back then that should have and still have a pretty lifechanging as well as, so it seems, a lifelong-lasting impact on me, yes, and ALL OUT WAR surely were one of this bands and to me also one of the most prominent and most important ones, too. I discovered them in 1997 via their mighty full-length-debut-album "TRUTH IN THE AGE OF LIES" that was back then released via the (then active, don't know right now if they are still around) german label "GAIN GROUND RECORDS" and they conquered me heavily and "TRUTH IN THE AGE OF LIES" is (also) still today pretty frequently put on heavy rotation here in the Manslaughter Headquarters. Then in 1998 ALL OUT WAR released their second full-length-album "FOR THOSE WHO WERE CRUCIFIED" and this time then they conquered me in an absolutely overwhelming way and personally for/to me it is definitely the most important release of all by ALL OUT WAR and this without a single doubt. It was even more heavy, hate-filled, harsh, forceful, devastating, and simply even more compelling and conquering and in total even more greater than the already damn great debut. Some songs of the debut they also rerecorded and reused on "FOR THOSE WHO WERE CRUCIFIED" and this 'newly-done-versions' add only further proof to what I've said right before. What is really fantastic is the fact that ALL OUT WAR's "FOR THOSE WHO WERE CRUCIFIED" is still today as strong, as harsh, as fresh, as alive-lively, and as relevant as back then in 1998. And this should tell you already a lot if not even more. ALL OUT WAR are still around and still active, formed in 1991 and still going strong today. Now in and with the next chapter of this article let us have a look a bit more precise on their musick.

ALL OUT WAR played harsh Metallic Hardcore or Metalcore and developed especially already with their first proper full-lengths they should become sort of godfathers of Metalcore that should be continously on the rise latest from the late-middle/late 1990's on with more and more Hardcore bands discovering and incorporating especially Thrash Metal, the then current New School Thrash Metal, and Death Metal into their musick forming a strong own scene with bands like for example EARTH CRISIS, TURMOIL, DAMNATION A.D., DISRESPECT, SWORN ENEMY, HATEBREED, and DAY OF SUFFERING beside ALL OUT WAR leading the pack back then. Each of this bands or more or less each of this bands had back then a pretty distinguishable style'n'sound and this also was (and still is) valid also and especially for ALL OUT WAR and their "FOR THOSE WHO WERE CRUCIFIED" is only (further) proof of/for this. Melting a lot of different Hardcore and Metal elements incredibel liquid'n'fluent(ly) together and creating one hell of a devastating thunderstorm of prime Metalcore that also not shies away from some Sludge influences. The Metal on here was and is even more prominent than on a lot of current Metalcore releases and also often more present on here than the Hardcore parts - even the Hardcore roots run anyhow very deep. Especially the guitar work is filled with very fresh Metal riffs throughout the whole album and also the drumming showcases a lot of brilliant done Metal styled moments full of a quick snare drum work directly from the Metal department around the block. In general expect devastating guitars, razor spitting harsh and highly aggressive vokillz, and a every and any opposition into the dust crushing rhythm section as well as loud gang back-ups and all melted together by very intense and grapping, rousing and exciting everything killing songwriting and all done'n'delivered by very (high) skilled musicians and all in an excellent way. This was and still is and probably will always be and remain a very rich and intense masterpiece of a groundbreaking and lifechanging album that anyone into really heavy (and metallic) Hardcore, Metalcore, and surely also a lot to everyone into Thrash Metal and probably also some into Death Metal should desperately and definitely call their very own and it was and still is a damn characteristic and pretty unique album in sound'n'style and a true legendary masterpiece of an album and if you really don't own or even know it you should by any means change this as soon as finally possible. Very outspoken and damn strong lyrics, a fantastic artwork, and a heavy bombing production-sound round it all finally up, yes, and the final song is a damn great medley of cover-tunes that also wait to be finally discovered by you. Enough said, get it and then play it loud!!! ALL OUT WAR's "FOR THOSE WHO WERE CRUCIFIED", truly a real timeless classick. HARDCORE!!! FIST!!!



Okay, that's it for now, yes, expect the next "CLASSICK OF THE MONTH" article, the "JULY 2018" edition, to come up here early next month in August of 2018, yes, because for today this will be all and tomorrow on Tuesday and also on Wednesday I will be in Munich, yes, visiting a good friend and hailing the almighty JUDAS PRIEST tomorrow live on stage and so from Wednesday or Thursday this week on you can or you should expect new stuff up here. And now, yes, a have a nice summer-evening.




ALL OUT WAR - "APOCALYPTIC TERROR" (1998, "FOR THOSE WHO WERE CRUCIFIED")


https://www.facebook.com/Alloutwar666/ (-the link to the facebook site of the band)





Sonntag, 29. Juli 2018

WRATHBLADE - "GOD OF THE DEEP UNLEASHED" (2017)

WRATHBLADE - "GOD OF THE DEEP UNLEASHED"
(Running time: 38:07 minutes; 9 songs)
("Eat Metal Records"; 2017; CD):
Hey guys, yes, next dose finally incoming for you and this means that the next and newest record-review by me is now aimed at you and this time it is on the so far still current and newest WRATHBLADE full-length-album "GOD OF THE DEEP UNLEASHED" released via the very sympathic "EAT METAL RECORDS" on CD already last year of 2017 by the end of it and just by some few other record-reviews that I've read round that time and due to the fantastic artwork and bandlogo I was right from the get-go instantly damn curious on/for it also without knowing the precursor release of/by WRATHBLADE or the band in general anyway earlier, yes, but I just got it two months ago because I found it nowhere earlier here in good old Germany (maybe I just checked the wrong sources... for sure) and anyhow I finally need to figure out how this whole PayPal stuff works… So, anyhow and anyway and however, yes, because I finally got it and so now here we finally are and so let's go: For all what I know or for all what I think to know WRATHBLADE hail also like their label "EAT METAL RECORDS" from Greece and "GOD OF THE DEEP UNLEASHED" is their second full-length-album and this is Heavy Metal, yes, Heavy fuckin' Metal, oh yes, and, to be more precise, this is Epic Metal and really strong Epic Metal - or, how I like to call it due to atmosphere and spirit and attitude of this certain musick, Conan Metal or Cimmerian Metal, yes, and some (one more time again) really damn strong one, point and fact. And it is also very fresh and also pretty to very unique Epic Metal with a lot of very good and very own ideas. The backbone of WRATHBLADE's "GOD OF THE DEEP UNLEASHED" is surely by the almighty MANILLA ROAD inspired Epic Metal enriched by (even) more Heavy Metal and also Power Metal focussed stunning heavyness so that everyone who likes/loves for example the fantastic VISIGOTH will also very strongly hail the mighty WRATHBLADE and their "GOD OF THE DEEP UNLEASHED", yes, and WRATHBLADE take it even further with incorporating ingredients and impressions that are (music-wise) withdrawn from Thrash Metal and even some Death Metal without any stylistic incongruities and cultivate their very own musick even more with it. This all tells you maybe already that the songwriting is pretty to very diverse and multi-layered and filled with many different facets when we look at all the 'compositorial-arrangements' and thank the gods it's all melted nicely fluently together so that no breaks are to be recognized here on WRATHBLADE's "GOD OF THE DEEP UNLEASHED" and turning this all into a really and truly surprisingly fresh and especially exciting as well as grapping ride from start to finish. To me the biggest trademark of WRATHBLADE here on "GOD OF THE DEEP UNLEASHED" are the absolutely amazing and phenomenal and above all very unique'n'original full, powerful, and very often and especially very intense in a 'sacred-imploringly' way done and delivered vokillz that shine incredible bright and colourful and that are also done truly highly charismatic and in a damn unique way. Then all is made full'n'round by very harsh hitting and nicely diverse and skillful guitars and a stunningly heavy rhythm section. A gorgeous artwork, pretty interesting and/or thoughtful lyrics, and a heavy and yet very earthy production-sound finally complete the package. If they just give us the next time sort of a real hit, yes, then WRATHBLADE will surely score the absolute jackpot. Highly and clearly and calmly recommended to any fan of really great Epic Metal.
(9 of 10 points)
https://www.facebook.com/wrathbladeofficial/ (-the link to the facebook site of the band)






WRATHBLADE - "SHEER VENGEANCE WILL OUT UPON THEE (GOD OF WAR Pt. II)" (2017, "GOD OF THE DEEP UNLEASHED")








Mittwoch, 25. Juli 2018

THE OBSESSED - "SACRED" (2017)

THE OBSESSED - "SACRED"
(Running time: 43:25 minutes; 12 songs)
("Relapse Records"; 2017; CD):
Hey folks, yes, next load'n'dose is already aimed and is now being fired @ you and here'n'now this means that my record-review on the still current full-length-album of/by no one else than the almighty THE OBSESSED is leaving the barrel for you. It's titled "SACRED" and was released via the great "RELAPSE RECORDS" (on CD and it wouldn't make me wonder if not also on LP) and this already in 2017. Last year I somehow always missed out on it... why ever, don't ask me any questions… but in my vacation-week this March of 2018 in Amsterdam I finally got my hands on it and took it with me - and this was definitely long, long overdue how I should soon came to realize it. And, yes, you know the story, sometimes life gets in the way of certain things and so it took me again… hm... 'some time' before I now finally come/came to doing this record-review on it and finally bringing it up. But anyway and anyhow and it don't matter if a 2017 or a 2018 release and so now, yes, let's roll: THE OBSESSED were formed back then already in 1979 with their first demo dating back from 1980 and here and now with "SACRED" we have their 4th official full-length-album and the first since "THE CHURCH WITHIN" from 1994, okay, I won't retell their very moving and changeable history over the last 39 years here and now simply because this would definitely demand a proper own tribute post to do them justice anyhow'n'anyway and so just let me state that THE OBSESSED definitely were and still are godfathers of Doom Metal and Doom Rock as well as Stoner Rock and Stoner Metal even they maybe themselves never sort of really used or maybe even never really liked that term(s) to sort of describe themselves, yes, and what I always especially liked and loved and still do so @ THE OBSESSED is the fact that THE OBSESSED always did their completly own and unique thing and maybe term(s) like Doom (Rock/Metal) or Stoner (Rock/Metal) truly never weren't and still aren't of that proper use to sort of describe THE OBSESSED in a proper and just way because they always had tons of, hm, let us name it: good old and Punk(rock) fueled Rock & Roll in their musick and they totally own their absoultely independent(ly) and unique position in the world of Doom (Rock/Metal) and Stoner (Rock/Metal) and standing proud, tall, and strong on this their very, very own position like also for example BLACK SABBATH, SAINT VITUS, and CANDLEMASS did and/or do so, too, yes, and THE OBSESSED's "SACRED" is sort of another manifest of/for this thesis and proof of/for it, oh hell yeahr, and so expect absolutely authentic and honest, heartfelt and also damn sympathic and boneshaking delivered dustdry and heavily 'punky' dirty rocking and grooving high energy and highly dynamic, nasty and snotty high octane and full throttle Rock & Roll with a totally no prisoners taking mindset, varying the pace of the songs and the rhythmic architecture as well as the playful arrangements and the in general breathtaking multi-layered soulful compositorial work of the songs very smart and skilled and smooth and this all the time and keeping it all so incredible fresh and damn  exciting and grapping, yes, so some really, really fantastic songwriting is a massive trademark of THE OBSESSED's "SACRED" and is in its very unique approach and with this amazing powerful and clichée-free and just totally dustdry unique 'desert-sand' tone only a further proof for the total autonomy of THE OBSESSED in the cosmos of Rock and Metal musick, yes, no matter if you now like to call it Doom or Stoner or how the hell else ever, ah, and really anthemic hymns that make you instantly clench your fists and fling them into the air and sing-a-long to THE OBSESSED created and placed also en masse here on "SACRED". Ah, and that THE OBSESSED here on "SACRED" do/did with the larger than life "IT'S ONLY MONEY" a phenomenal THIN LIZZY cover-tune should tell you also already quite a (bigger) bit. And so expect tons of high skilled and very independently and sheer full force dirty guitars, absolutely fantastic and charismatic vocals, a powerful gruff bass, and loud thundering drums that will make you take to highway full-throttle and with full-volume instantly. Thought-provoking and very strong'n'good lyrics, a true beauty of a gorgeous artwork, and a perfect snotty and heavy production-sound then round this absolute masterpiece perfectly up. Any favorites I won't name you because it simply wouldn't make that much sense after this album is completly on the same highest levels of skills and quality, oh yes, even "BE THE NIGHT", "PUNK CRUSHER", "COLD BLOOD", "STRANGER THINGS", "HAYWIRE", "SODDEN JACKAL", and "IT'S ONLY MONEY" probably have to spend the very most time here on heavy-duty rotation, if they want to do so or not, yes, I simply don't let them any other chance or choice. Okay, I think I've said already by far enough, yes, and so I will right now and right here close this very record-review and I can only very clearly recommend THE OBSESSED's "SACRED" to any of you into real and honest and authentic hard hitting metallic and punky Rock & Roll and to any of you into this target-group that why the bloody hell ever still really don't have or maybe even don't know it here's my clear and precise advice: Get it finally as soon as possible and best finally right now, period.
(10 of 10 points)
https://www.theobsessedofficial.com/ (-the link to the homepage of the band)








THE OBSESSED - "BE THE NIGHT"/// live \\\ (2017, "SACRED")
















AXEL RUDI PELL - "KNIGHTS CALL" (2018)

AXEL RUDI PELL - "KNIGHTS CALL"
(Running time: 58:12 minutes; 10 songs)
("Steamhammer"/"SPV"; 2018; CD):
Oh boy, is this little piece here'n'now now already long, long overdue, yes, for a really damn pretty long while now already anyhow'n'anyway but, okay, finally here it is, yes, my record-review on the new AXEL RUDI PELL full-length-album "KNIGHTS CALL" released at the 23rd of March of 2018 via "STEAMHAMMER"/"SPV" on CD and LP, yes, and it is in sort of 30 years of the band's existence now already the 17th album released by AXEL RUDI PELL in sort of in a 'straight row'. Two years ago in 2016 AXEL RUDI PELL released "GAME OF SINS" and conquered me pretty much completly with it and so I was more than very happy and damn curious when I finally got "KNIGHTS CALL" in my mailbox the day it was finally released and, yes, again AXEL RUDI PELL conquered me massively and this time in 2018 even more than with the fantastic "GAME OF SINS" back then in 2016. (I did my review on it up here last year in August of 2017, so why not read it as well.) On and with "KNIGHTS CALL" AXEL RUDI PELL deliver us again a huge dose of this/their very unique style of heavily by crispy and cutting Heavy Metal fueled hard hitting, sharp whipping, heavy thundering and yet at the same time and especially and above all absolutely majestic, melodic, symphonic, and hymnal Hard Rock (or Heavy Rock) with a strong epic note to it all and that's still breathing here'n'there a fresh and very independently delivered and whirring and scenting RAINBOW vibe and this bred on huge doses of a nutritious honest and authentic Heavy Metal diet and all enriched and/or cultivated with that typical and very unique 'totally own' AXEL RUDI PELL identity that especially shines through, and this very bright and clear, in that special and unique guitar tone, vibe, and playing and in the rich and multi-facetted as well as multi-layered arranged and composed songwriting with that certain unique vibe that grants AXEL RUDI PELL's songs also and maybe especially even more on "KNIGHTS CALL" a very own chracter, note, and dynamic as well as a surely larger than life and epic identity, yes, and so any sort of 'further-going' comparisions to/with any other bands/artists would be and simply are nonsense and so I will spare me anything like this here and now. What is also total nonsense is the bullshit talking of 'If you know one AXEL RUDI PELL album you know them all.' because just by looking at "GAME OF SINS" from 2016 and "KNIGHTS CALL" in 2018 the differences are pretty clear, take for example just the much stronger focus on fresh and very alive-lively done impressions of 1970's Vintage Rock or Classic Rock and the very strong and present Hammond-Organ here on "KNIGHTS CALL" or that far more playful arrangements of the songs here on "KNIGHTS CALL" in contrast to the much more straight ahead metallic onwards rocking and herad-banging approach of "GAME OF SINS" to name just this two or three pretty obvious differences between just this two albums. Also, just by the way, a specific and own 'musical-character' and sticking true to/with it is not the same as repeating your own work again and again, yes, and I always thought that would be clear to anyone anyhow… or shoul be, at least. Beside this expect with AXEL RUDI PELL's "KNIGHTS CALL" an album that's nothing less'n'but incredible rich on/in facets and heavily diverse and filled with great and multi-layered rhythmic arrangements and stunning varying pace work and much, much more, yes, and all really, really fresh and alive-lively done and delivered and full of exciting and grapping twists and turns all along the ride from start to finish and that's packed to the max with huge and honest emotions that blissfully shower you in goosepimples again and again withpout end or stop, oh hell yeahr, very diverse and masterly skillfull on all levels. Brilliant and highly rousing guitar work delivering fantastic riffs and in general absolutely larger than life and massively forceful rhythm arrangements as well as absolutely breathtaking leads and truly majestic-masterly solos absoultely to the max and all with a fantastic epic approach to it all, yes, surely the biggest trademark again here on and with AXEL RUDI PELL's "KINIGHTS CALL". The fantastic and highly skilled and charismatic lead vocals surely are next to be named, as well as here on and with "KNIGHTS CALL" especially the fantastic Hammond-Organ. The punch- and powerful bass and the smashing drumming then only back it all massively up and this in a damn fantastic way, yeahr, and all pushed onwards by very forceful galloping rhythmic accentuations. Strong and thoughtful as well as interesting lyrics and a pure gorgeous beauty of an artwork, and a truly heavy bombing hard and clear widescreen production-sound then finally round it all up. AXEL RUDI PELL delivered with "KNIGHTS CALL" not only one of the very strongest albums in their already 30 years spanning career but also one of the clear highlights of and in and for 2018 and this without the slightest single doubt and so to any Hard Rock and Heavy Metal fan out there I can only calmly, clearly, and enthusiatically recommend this fantastic and brilliant, masterly album, yes, and so if you are into the above mentioned target-group and really still don't have or even know AXEL RUDI PELL's "KNIGHTS CALL", why the damn fucking bloody hell ever, you should change this finally as soon as possible, point and fact.
(10 of 10 points)
https://www.axel-rudi-pell.de/ (-the link to the homepage of the band)








AXEL RUDI PELL - "THE CRUSADERS OF DOOM" (2018, "KNIGHTS CALL")













Montag, 23. Juli 2018

STRYPER - "GOD DAMN EVIL" (2018)

STRYPER - "GOD DAMN EVIL"
(Runninmg time: 44:40 minutes; 11 songs)
("Frontiers Records"; 2018; CD):
Yes, all you dirty and filthy sinners repent because judgement day is finally one more time again here and judgement aims its blood dripping spear at you while silver shining swords cutting off your heads and in golden shields the last you see is the reflection of your painfilled face screaming out loud in silent anger and misery… okay, maybe this all lead me a bit too far… ahm... okay, in other words: The mighty STRYPER are back in 2018 with their newest full-length-album "GOD DAMN EVIL" released still more or less pretty recently in 2018 via "FRONTIERS RECORDS" (on CD, but probably also on LP). STRYPER, the grandfathers of Christian (Hard) Rock (or so to say), have sort of always been a guilty pleasure of me, myself, and I (even without being a Christian myself) and so I was pretty excited when I finally saw STRYPER's "GOD DAMN EVIL" in my local media store and this even more after it sort of came out of nowhere for me. Ah, and btw, anyone who really (still) ticks out'n'off because of their religious agenda just stop reading, no problem, anyone else go ahead: For all what I would say STRYPER are (much) harder and definitely a bit more modern up here on and with "GOD DAMN EVIL" working with more stunning Heavy Metal marks to enrich their Hard Rock/Heavy Rock quite a bit and also they manage to work a bunch of more groovy and modern rhythm arrangements and structures into their songs with a stronger focus on tension-building rhythmic accentuations to bulk up their anthemic and melodic yet heavy hitting and stomping Hard Rock quite a bit and this in a pretty stunning and massive way. Best example surely is the opener "TAKE IT TO THE CROSS", a fantastic song, harsh and groovy thrashing Metal that will please any fan of bands from PANTERA over DAMAGEPLAN to SHADOWS FALL and that showcases even some few Death Metal grunts (as backings, so to say), surely one of the if not the heaviest songs STRYPER ever did to date. But also massively heavy and stunning songs like "GOD DAMN EVIL" (even being totally fist pumping hymnal STRYPER-esque Hard Rock par excellence), "THE VALLEY", "OWN UP", and "YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW ME" (brilliant composed refrain, just btw) are prime examples for STRYPER going more heavy and modern in 2018 then even before, yes, and are also absolutely first class songs. I go even so far and say that I would have wished that STYRPER would have taken this even a bit further, yes, but maybe that's just me, who knows. But calm down, because STYPER still know how to do and deliver absolutely top notch melodic (and again and again pretty much all the time also nicely metallic) Hard Rock here and there maybe slightly also flirting with some AOR and that's marked by very strong songwriting full of rousing dynamics and energy and grapping moments from start to finish and that's all the time very nicely multi-facetted and so offers a lot to discover, and that's filled to the exploding maximum with fantastic guitar playing that delivers majestic riffing and rhythm works as well as and especially top notch leads and goosepimple-giving solos, amazing and gorgeous and highly charismatic vocals, and a massive stunning rhythm section consisting (out) of a great and really walking'n'talking bass and thundering drumming and all full of sheer power and full force, and also some nice backings and some few atmospheric organ moments we get on top of it all, yes, and all done on a very high level of quality by truly high skilled musicians (and songwriters). My personal favorites would be or surely are "TAKE IT TO THE CROSS", "GOD DAMN EVIL", "YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW ME", "THE VALLEY", "SEA OF THIEVES", "OWN UP" and "THE DEVIL DOESN'T LIVE HERE", yes, so maybe check this heavyweight gems out first. Some good and surprisingly pretty subtle lyrics, a gorgeous artwork, and a very heavy production-sound (I would just wish that the sound would be a bit more cleaner and clearer, but maybe that's just my personal taste, again: who knows) finally round STRYPER's "GOD DAMN EVIL" up and this in a pretty good way. Yes, all in all a very nice and welcomed breath of fresh air and a damn strong album that I can calmly and clearly recommend to anyone into Hard Rock (and Heavy Metal as well).
(8,5 of 10 points)
http://www.stryper.com/ (-the link to the homepage of the band)








STYRPER - "TAKE IT TO THE CROSS" (2018, "GOD DAMN EVIL")









Mittwoch, 18. Juli 2018

CIRCLE OF SILENCE - "THE CRIMSON THRONE" (2018)

CIRCLE OF SILENCE - "THE CRIMSON THRONE"
(Running time: 42:38 minutes; 11 Songs)
("Massacre Records"; 2018; CD):
Hey guys, yes, trust your eyes, already the next round's aimed at you and so here and now you get my record-review on the (brand)new (very) recently in 2018 via the very well-established "MASSACRE RECORDS" label released CIRCLE OF SILENCE full-length-album "THE CRIMSON THRONE", yes, and without any further smalltalkin'n'introducin' ramblings here we go one more time again, yes, and so let's go: The german CIRCLE OF SILENCE were before "THE CRIMSON THRONE" absolute strangers to me, yes, another band of "that kind", so to say, and it was pretty much mostly to only due to the (in the book of my personal taste) fantastic artwork that I got curious when I saw the CD in my local media store and so I risked one or two ears, then took it with me, sneaking to my car grinning from ear to ear like a hobgoblin who discovered the one ring of power for himself, yes, and so now here we are… okay, at least more or less like this so the story goes. Anyhow and anyway, yes, because here we are now… So, okay, CIRCLE OF SILENCE are a german band and they play Metal, yes, goddamn fucking no holds barred and no prisoners taking Metal. METAL!!! Heavily by harsh and devastating Thrash Metal fueled and yet all the time melodic and catchy and above all massively forceful Power Metal with some strong or deep roots in hymnal and anthemic Heavy Metal and some fast raging Speed Metal injections with some (few) very clichée-free and nicely alive-lively modern approaches here and there worked very fresh into it all CIRCLE OF SILENCE serve us here on and with "THE CRIMSON THRONE" and this on just an incredible strong, skilled, and high level of quality and with such a strong own and damn unique identity that it all is nothing else and especially nothing less than just damn fucking great and in parts even more than this. Very fresh and absolutely forceful songwriting full of great variations of pace/tempo, a huge diversity when it comes to the rhythm structures and the arrangements of the songs in general as well as to the compositorial side of the songs and how all the different riffs, parts, moods, and elements that 'make' the songs are in parts nearly perfectly melted together, and also when we talk about the multi-layered and multi-facetted identity of each single song as well as the whole album, yes, this all turns CIRCLE OF SILENCE's "THE CRIMSON THRONE" into one hell of an exciting, grapping, rousing, and filled with some nice little to big twists'n'turns and some fresh surprises and/or unexpected moments ride and this all along the road. And what is also nothing but great is that CIRCLE OF SILENCE really know how to build big to giant mountains of tension in and with their songs, yes, and also that the amazing verses are as strong as the truly larger than life refrains, yes, and that the highly dynamic songs are nearly all the time burstin'n'explodin' for only hardly controlled high octane energy also only speaks for them, yes, for CIRCLE OF SILENCE and their "THE CRIMSON THRONE". All is filled with stunning and incredible forceful and majestic guitar work that delivers amazing riffs and in general just damn mighty rhythm structures and arrangements and shines above all especially with phenomal melody lines, great leads and stunning solos, and that is backed up by a thundering lightning striking rhythm section, while the clear and clean, melodic and yet all the time still very, very strong and hard and powerful lead vocals, at all the right moments backed up by loud'n'proud widescreen crew shoutings, put the crown on it all. The whole album is nothing but damn great and greater stuff but I think my personal favorites would be or maybe better are "DESTROYERS OF THE EARTH", "RACE TO THE SKY", "POSSESSED BY FIRE", "LIONHEART", "THE CRIMSON THRONE", "INTO THE FIRE", "THE CHOSEN ONE", and "ENDGAME" and so maybe check this purest platinum gems out first. An absolutely gorgeous artwork, very good and also pretty multi-layered lyrics, and a clear and heavy production-sound then round it all up in a fantastic way. CIRCLE OF SILENCE's "THE CRIMSON THRONE" is personally for/to me one of the biggest or maybe better one of the most unexpected surprises of/for 2018 so far and for sure one of the strongest albums we will (still) see this year and this in and for but also 'above'n'beside' Metal musick. I can only highly and clearly recommend CIRCLE OF SILENCE's "THE CRIMSON THRONE" to you and so you really better should go out and get it just in case you still don't call it your own, point and fact.
(9,5 of 10 points)
https://www.facebook.com/circleofsilence (-the link to the facebook site of the band)








CIRCLE OF SILENCE - "LIONHEART" (2018, "THE CRIMSON THRONE")









Dienstag, 17. Juli 2018

MONUMENT - "HELLHOUND" (2018)

MONUMENT - "HELLHOUND"
(Running time: 42:48 minutes; 9 songs)
("Rock of Angels Records"; 2018; CD):
Okay, yes, incoming is now already the next dose for you and this time it is my record-review on the new MONUMENT full-length-album "HELLHOUND" released pretty recently in 2018 via "ROCK OF ANGELS RECORDS" on CD. Before "HELLHOUND" MONUMENT from London, England/U.K. were total strangers to me, why ever, and if you now ask yourself what awaits us here let me here and now just name three terms: (1.) Heavy Metal; (2.) NWOBHM; and (3.) IRON MAIDEN, yes, and this 'trio of terms' sums up and tells you pretty much already the most important informations about MONUMENT and their unleashed "HELLHOUND". This is really old school 'spirited' and done British Heavy Metal but thank to the mighty gods too energetic and fresh and alive-lively done to be any lame and stale retro crap stuff and that's damn, damn good. Beside this… MONUMENT come close to be sort of an IRON MAIDEN ripp off, because, yes, "HELLHOUND" sounds like an IRON MAIDEN album somewhere between maybe "THE NUMBER OF THE BEAST" and "PIECE OF MIND", okay, but definitely without being exactly that groundbreaking and lifechanging fantastic and great but how could they and so not blaming them and this not even a single bit. But, yes, I miss anyhow a bit of a fresh and own unique identity and character and like in most of this cases I still would choose the original over the copy any time, if you get what I'm saying, but with that said, yes, MONUMENT have done a very decent and a really good job here on and with "HELLHOUND" and so expect rousing and high octane songwriting non stopp and a damn good album filled to the max with air raid siren vokillz, fast galloping bass runs, thundering guitar riffs and thrilling twin guitar leads and exciting solos, and forceful 'weasel-nimbly' drumming as well as grapping arranged verses and huge refrains. Truly, yes, pretty much top notch stuff… just maybe sort of find a bit more of your own character… but what do I know and who am I to judge anyhow. Beside IRON MAIDEN there aren't that many more influences or comparisions to name here beside the fact that the opener "WILLIAM KIDD", as really damn fucking strong as it truly is, is a through and through RUNNING WILD ripp off (but with too weak vocals) and that the fantastic "NIGHTRIDER" is heavily inspired by the almighty JUDAS PRIEST and "THE END" showcases some U.S. Metal influences somewhere between OMEN and MANOWAR thrown into the mix and then that's it. A bunch of strong lyrics, a gorgeous artwork, and a pretty heavy and yet natural production-sound then finally round it all up. My personal favorites would be or better are "ATTILA", "NIGHTRIDER", "THE END", "STRAIGHT THROUGH THE HEART", "WILLIAM KIDD", and "HELLHOUND", yes, so maybe try that songs out first. That's all what I have so far to say to/about MONUMENT's "HELLHOUND", an album any IRON MAIDEN fan and especially any IRON MAIDEN fan of their legendary earlier works who like me, myself, and I can't really connect to their über-'bombastic' current works will surely love and hail. Like already said is my only problem with it that it too often comes a bit too close to being sort of an IRON MAIDEN copy but that many other (bigger) negative points aren't to be found up here and so to any Heavy Metal and especially NWOBHM and/or IRON MAIDEN fan I can only recommend MONUMENT's "HELLHOUND" here and now and this clearly.
(8,5 of 10 points)
http://www.monumentband.com/ (-the link to the homepage of the band)








MONUMENT - "ATTILA" (2018, "HELLHOUND")








Montag, 16. Juli 2018

ROSS THE BOSS - "BY BLOOD SWORN" (2018)

ROSS THE BOSS - "BY BLOOD SWORN"
(Running time: 46:33 minutes; 10 songs)
("AFM Records"; 2018; CD):
Hey guys, yes, finally the next round'n'dose for you and your enjoyment is right here. From Sunday, the 8th of July of 2018 on I was on a very nice vacation-travel and just came home still pretty recently one day ago and so the sort of one week of nothing new up here should be explained (if there was ever the need to explain anything anyhow anyway) to all of you. And I thought kicking it all of with a new record-review (that's now also waiting to be done for already a bit longer), yes, and so here we go with my record-review on the (brand)new ROSS THE BOSS full-length-album "BY BLOOD SWORN" released still not that long ago in 2018 on CD (at least that's the format I have of it) via "AFM RECORDS", yes, and after we all should know ROSS THE BOSS aka the man himself very well, the Metal guys from his time with the almighty MANOWAR and the Punk dudes from his runs with the mighty THE DICTATORS, I will now spare me any words more to introduce him here and now any further on. This is his newest 'solo-album' and ROSS THE BOSS recruited a 'new team' around him consisting (out) of strong going veterans like for example Mike LePond at the bass (SYMPHONY X, SILENT ASSASSIN) and Marc Lopes at the mic (fromer MELIAH RAGE) and together they delivered "BY BLOOD SWORN" to us and the world, hell yeahr, and this is a damn fucking mighty piece of crushing U.S. American Heavy Metal with plenty of heavy flirtings with thundering Power Metal in it all and with some slight (but) passionate Epic Metal marks in it, too; and "BY BLOOD SWORN" is ROSS THE BOSS' third full-length-album under that moniker and, if I am now not completly wrong informed, it's the first one since "HAILSTORM" in/from 2010. For all what I've read this album got often a lot of shit but if you free yourself of/from any MANOWAR expectations and just look at "BY BLOOD SWORN" for what it is then you will definitely and enthusiastically cheer up to it, especially if you are into guitar driven and riff dominated (U.S. American) Heavy/Power Metal somewhere between ICED EARTH and HELSTAR and maybe some very, very few JAG PANZER and with slight Epic Metal and also some Hard Rock notes in it that comes dressed in fresh and strong songwriting that isn't shying away from THIN LIZZY inspired Hard Rock and even some few Horror Rock/Horror Punk a la THE MISFITS and that offers a lot of multi-facetted and pretty diverse approaches and ideas with serving a lot of exciting and grapping twists'n'turns all along the ride and that surely has a pretty unique and own character and identity. The same is to say about/to the fantastic and very charismatic guitar work that shines'n'sounds in its very own and damn unique boneshaking and dustdry tone and that delivers crushing riffs and powerful rhythm arrangements while at the same time shining bright with compelling great melodies and leads and first-class solos and this all mostly all the time. The guitars are surely also the strongest trademark of ROSS THE BOSS' "BY BLOOD SWORN" and are backed up fantastic in a very stunning and massive way by the thundering rhythm section, while the very strong vocals finally enrich it all (surely no 'new' Eric Adams, hell no, definitely not, but absolutely top notch anyhow). Surely not all is gold and songs like the terrible (power-)ballad "FAITH OF THE FALLEN" or the by far too-über-cheesy "AMONG THE BONES" probably should have better never been done in the first place anyhow, yes, but mighty Metal battle hymns like "BY BLOOD SWORN", "THIS IS VENGEANCE", "WE ARE THE NIGHT" and "FISTFUL OF HATE" with a strong Warrior and Conan/Cimmeria spirit and vibe to it as well as the fantastic THIN LIZZY inspired Hard Rock hymn "PLAY AMONG THE GODZ" are absolutely amazing top notch stuff, point and fact. A bunch of surely pretty clichée but anyhow good lyrics, a fantastic artwork, and a heavy hitting production sound then round it all finally up. To any Heavy Metal/Power Metal fan I can only recommend ROSS THE BOSS' "BY BLOOD SWORN" and so make sure to finally get it if you are into that kind of stuff and really still don't have it.
(8,5 of 10 points)
http://www.ross-the-boss.com/ (-the link to the homepage of the band)





ROSS THE BOSS - "BY BLOOD SWORN" (2018, "BY BLOOD SWORN")








Donnerstag, 5. Juli 2018

MYSTIC PROPHECY - "MONUMENTS UNCOVERED" (2018)

MYSTIC PROPHECY - "MONUMENTS UNCOVERED"
(Running time: 40:44 minutes; 11 songs)
("Massacre Records"; 2018; CD):
Hey guys, next dose right here for you and this means next record-review is coming in. This time you get my record-review on the 10th full-length-album titled "MONUMENTS UNCOVERED" of/by the german Power Metal band MYSTIC PROPHECY released this January at the beginning of 2018 via the very-well-established "MASSACRE RECORDS" label from Germany on CD and on digipak-CD as well as LP and both of the latter feature eleven songs of which one is an exclusive bonustrack and after my copy is a CD and it features eleven songs you should know that I call the digipak-CD my very own. To be (one more time) completly honest then I have to admit that I have not a single clou why (also one more time again) this (by the way or so it seems incredible great) band right here'n'now, MYSTIC PROPHECY, were completly and absoultely and totally unknown to me before I first listened to their "MONUMENTS UNCOVERED", yes, but anyhow time to change this finally more 'intensely' in the soon future. MYSTIC PROPHECY's "MONUMENTS UNCOVERED" is a cover-album and a damn great one, too, that features fantastic cover-versions of original-songs from/of artists and bands like PATTI SMITH and BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN, T-REX, ELTON JOHN, CCR, DONNA SUMMER, KIM WILDE and THE SUPREMES, MONSTER MAGNET, LENNY KRAVITZ, TOKYO, MIKE OLDFIELD, and BILLY SQUIER and MYSTIC PROPHECY while always preserving or 'securing' the original-character of each song also manage at the same time to really and truly create for each single song a new and very own identity in the context of their hard-hitting, hymnal, really thundering-heavy and yet all the time damn catchy and melodic and in (huge) parts pretty hard-rockish  Heavy Metal or better Power Metal completly filled to the maximum with fantastic, smok(e)y and hard while at the same time and all the time very hymnal sung lead vocals with a special own tone'n'flair to them and at all the right moments nicely enriched with good healthy portions of loud'n'proud widescreen backings, crushing heavy as well as bright shining and loud, clear, and melodic singing guitars, a fantstic and really crushing rhythm work, and a forceful bombing and kicking rhythm-section and also a bunch of great ideas of 'upfreshing' the arrangements of the covered tracks all the bit a nice bit. This is really nothing else or nothing less just damn great, period. The covered tracks are "YOU KEEP ME HANGING ON", "HOT STUFF", "SHADOWN ON THE WALL", "ARE YOU GONNA GO MY WAY", "I'M STILL STANDING", "BECAUSE THE NIGHT", "SPACE LORD", "GET IT ON", "TOKYO", "PROUD MARY", and "THE STROKE" (the bonussong) and each single one is just damn great done and sort of like on the same level of quality and so it's really damn hard to pick any favorites but maybe I've listened to "BECAUSE THE NIGHT", "SHADOW ON THE WALL", "I'M STILL STANDING", "GET IT ON", "TOKYO", "PROUD MARY", and "YOU KEEP ME HANGING ON" the very most and the very loudest so maybe I should name this über-gems here and now. A really stunning beautiful and fantastic artwork and a really heavy smashing production-sound we get on top of it all. Btw, I always like cover-albums that are done good and feature songs of artists and bands of another style'n'genre then the covering band itself is home in, if you get what I mean, and MYSTIC PROPHECY's "MONUMENTS UNCOVERED" is exactly one of that kind and it is a damn great one and an album of that kind that I not only like but really love, point and fact. So, yes, highly recommend to anyone out there with a delicious metallic taste in musick. If you still don't know or have it you should finally change this really, really soon.
(9 of 10 points)
http://www.mysticprophecy.net/ (-the link to the homepage of the band)







MYSTIC PROPHECY - "SHADOW ON THE WALL" (2018, "MONUMENTS UNCOVERED")








Dienstag, 3. Juli 2018

JADED HEART - "DEVIL'S GIFT" (2018)

JADED HEART - "DEVIL'S GIFT"
(Running time: 51:01 minutes; 11 songs)
("Massacre Records"; 2018; CD):
Hey guys, yes, trust your eyes already the 2nd post for today… don't ask me when this happened up here for the last time... and here and now the next dose of record-reviews is aimed at and coming for you. Here now you'll get my record-review on the (brand)new JADED HEART full-length-album "DEVIL'S GIFT" released still very recently via the well-known german veteran-label (of) "MASSACRE RECORDS" on CD. JADED HEART, before "DEVIL'S GIFT" somehow total strangers to me, (but) are anyhow absolutely long-runners in the german (Hard) Rock and (Heavy) Metal scene and active for (far) over a decade or so with already plenty of releases under their belt and today with very close ties to Sweden. Anyway and anyhow and how-ever, yes, now we have and we are in 2018 and here we get the "DEVIL'S GIFT" served to us by JADED HEART and finally they serve it also to me and so I now deliver you my record-review on it. In a little about 50 minutes JADED HEART deliver us here a good dosed load of modern-up-to-date and metallic, hard hitting and tough grooving , and above all highly melodic and damn anthemic as well as pretty much for all the right reasons through-and-through truly very catchy Hard Rock/Heavy Rock with some flirtings with Heavy Metal and Power Metal. The energy-levels are really very high and the songs are strongly marked by really pushing and powerful and also really 'differing-from-each-other' and exciting and pretty huge dynamics, smashing the songs forward in a very fresh and surprising manner and the songwriting in general is pretty much as well as this and so also a truly nicely fresh and often surprising affair with a very nicely clichée-free modern and/or up-to-date approach to it all, freshin' it all even more up, the same is to say in general about the grapping and rousing compositorial work with forceful arranged verses and truly mighty refrains as well as about the in parts really fantastic rhythmic arrangements and the amazing and also, like above already mentioned, damn clichée-free grooves that really pound their way forwards and this in a the songs mercylessly ever-onwards pushing manner. Really, and I mean really strong, damn strong and personally to me due to the fact that JADED HEART were before "DEVIL'S GIFT" totally unknown to me a big and highly welcome surprise. Sometimes personally for me and my gusto the songs are carrying just a bit too much pathos in them but that's maybe just me, who knows, and that's also so far my only bigger or major 'point of critics' I have to address. The biggest trademark of JADED HEART's "DEVIL'S GIFT" are without a single doubt the metallic heavy and very diverse guitars that shine or maybe better sound in a very unique and own tone and that are delivering asskicking rhythms and really fresh, exciting, and sort of mostly 'ever-changing' riffs as well as singing and highly melodic leads and catchy solos and this all sort of without end and this all on a damn high level of quality. Backed up by a through-and-through fiery and powerful rhythm section that delivers the strong and 'ever-twisting'n'turning' rhythm arrangements in a truly 'all-breaks-off' manner, and then all is crowned by the (at the right moments also powerful backed up) forceful delivered clear and melodic sung and hymnal and catchy intoned pretty charismatic lead vocals. Here and there you'll also find some electronial/'keyboardical' elements thrown for good into the mix as well. Yes, this very one here, JADED HEART's "DEVIL'S GIFT", is really damn strong stuff that is completly made round by very good and also surely thoughtful and then also nicely varying lyrics, a really cool artwork, and a very heavy and yet all the time very organic and clear production-sound. If you are into above named/described music then I can really calmly and in/with all honesty only recommend this album to you, yes, the next time just maybe cut a bit of the above already mentioned pathos and add a true 'über-hit' to the 'roster' and all will even better if not greater. Anyhow, JADED HEART's "DEVIL'S GIFT" is a damn strong album that I, like already said, clearly can only recommend to you and so give it a try or best just get it promptly.
(8,5 of 10 points)
https://www.facebook.com/jadedheartmusic (-the link to the facebook site of the band)





JADED HEART - "WASTELAND" (2018, "DEVIL'S GIFT")







JADED HEART - "ONE WORLD" (2018, "DEVIL'S GIFT")







JADED HEART - "THE ENEMY" (2018, "DEVIL'S GIFT")







Montag, 2. Juli 2018

CRYSTALL BALL - "CRYSTALLIZER" (2018)

CRYSTAL BALL - "CRYTSALLIZER"
(Running time: 42:37 minutes; 11 songs)
("Massacre Records"; 2018; CD):
Hey guys, yes, new month, new day, new post or what-ever and after I really managed to ride down the road marked on my road-map for the last month up here seccussfuly I thought I try to keep that momentum alive… at least a bit ;-) ...and serve you already right now the next dose. The next and newest "CLASSICK OF THE MONTH" article is also already in the works and will come up finally one day this week before I will start this coming Sunday into a week away from home, yes, but for now I have decided that I today rather give you a new quick, short post and so here now comes my newest record-review for you, yes, and this time it will be or better it is again all about (Hard) Rock and (Heavy/Power) Metal with this very one here and now will be all about the newest (still pretty recently released) full-length-album of/by CRYSTAL BALL from Switzerland, a-decade-+-long-running Hard Rock/Heavy-Power Metal band who had released with "CRYSTALLIZER" their newest offering via the well-established and long-running german "MASSACRE RECORDS" label on CD and also as a limited CD with bonustracks, yes, but I 'only' have the normal version and so my review here and now will be on the, yes, normal version. For what-ever reasons "CRYSTALLIZER" is my first 'meeting' with CRYSTALL BALL and we get here pretty strong and really damn good melodic and 'über-'mostly and very hymnal arranged and anthemic composed Heavy Metal with very strong Hard Rock marks in it and some Power Metal flirtings, too, and all done'delivered via good doses of pretty intense and nicely exciting and grapping songwriting that gives us powerful verses and (in parts really hugely) anthemic refrains as well, showcasing also a big bunch of really rousing rhythmic arrangements, and that's marked by strong and powerful guitars delivering the goods in the departments of rhythmic work with nice organic grooving approaches and forceful beating riffs as well as in the departments of bright shining leads and really strong solos, by melodic and clear and yet powerful and it-all really all-the-time very catchy delivering lead vocals, and also by a pure force and nicely varying as well as at the same time relentlessly stoic punching rhythm section, and even a real über-hit (so to say) is missing on CRYSTALL BALL's "CRYSTALLIZER" here with really strong and rousing songs like for example "CRYSTALLIZER", "SYMPHONY OF LIFE", "ALIVE FOR EVERMORE", the pure Hard Rock hymn "CRAZY IN THE NIGHT", "BEAUTY IN THE BEAST" and/or the mighty "DUSTY DEADLY" you can't do anything wrong if you are into that kind of music and this means especially often very Hard Rock-ish and at the same time still with Power Metal-flirting absolutely hymnal and catchy as fuck Heavy Metal in the tradition of mid-1990's HELLOWEEN with masterpiece albums like "MASTER OF THE RINGS" (minus the Speed Metal roots). Anyone into this glorious music to you I can only recommend CRYSTAL BALL's "CRYSTALLIZER" that comes also with truly good and nicely diverse lyrics, a cool "skulls always rule" (and that they definitely do) artwork, and a clear and yet still pretty powerful production-sound on top of it all. Well-done, CRYSTAL BALL; and now I think I should have to check your discography a bit more intense.
(8 of 10 points)
https://www.crystal-ball.ch/de/ (-the link to the homepage of the band)





CRYSTALL BALL - "ALIVE FOR EVERMORE" (2018, "CRYSTALLIZER")