METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
Ulterium Records signs HARMONY & THEOCRACY:
Press Release / Ulterium Records are very proud to announce the signing of the Swedish melodic metal band HARMONY to the label. Their sophomore album, Chapter II: Aftermath, will be released in the fall of 2008 and will be preceded by the EP End Of My Road. Release dates and track listings will be announced within the coming weeks.
Chapter II: Aftermath is mixed by Pelle Saether (ACT, SKYFIRE) in Studio Underground and mastered by Göran Finnberg (IN FLAMES, THE HAUNTED, DARK TRANQUILITY) at The Mastering Room. Daniel Heiman (HEED, ex. LOST HORIZON) is doing guest vocals on the track “Inner peace” and Kristoffer Gildenlöw (DIAL, ex. PAIN OF SALVATION) handles the bass during the entire album.”
HARMONY online: www.facebook.com/harmonysweden
Press Release / Ulterium Records has signed the Athens, Georgia based melodic power metal band THEOCRACY for the release of their sophomore album Mirror Of Souls. A release date in the fall of 2008 is planned.
“We’re very excited to finally get this album (Mirror Of Souls) out,” says band founder Matt Smith. “Ulterium really understands what we’re about, and they believe in this record. We’re really looking forward to working together.”
Ulterium Records owner Emil Westerdahl shares that excitement, saying, “I’ve been a fan of THEOCRACY since the release of their debut album, and I'm thrilled about this opportunity to work together with them on Mirror of Souls. This album will surely be received very well by both critics and fans, and exciting times are definitely ahead for THEOCRACY!”
The material on Mirror of Souls expands on the epic, melodic Metal style that THEOCRACY introduced on the self-titled debut album, and the addition of drummer Shawn Benson and guitarist Jon Hinds has added a new dimension and energy to the sound.
Mirror of Souls is being mastered by Mika Jussila at Finnvox Studios, and the cover art was designed by Invisible Creature. Look for a full song to be posted online in the coming weeks, and for the album to be released in early fall 2008!
MISSION OF ONE completes work on self-titled third album:
As offered by founding member Chris Dickens:
"After two long years, the new MISSION OF ONE album is completely mixed and self-mastered. I've listened to it on multiple players and had several folks listen and give their opinions. As of now, the music is done.
"I am going ahead with a two version release idea. The first version will be available through my webstore (more info later) and on Amazon.com. That disc will have a lot of photos, but no lyrics. However, it will be a full release with both front and back inserts and color printing on the disc face. Since these are being made by CreateSpace, I will have to have no inventory of these on hand, and they are costing nothing out of pocket. Cool, huh?
"The second version will be in a slim line case. It will just have a 4 panel front insert and will have black text on the disc. You will get less packaging, but you WILL get the lyrics with this one. This version will also cost a little less. I'm making these mostly to give out or sell at shows. I'll probably give more away than sell, and that is why I went with the lesser expensive printing for this version. Special thanks goes to Fundy for making/printing the inserts for the disc. He now has all the info in hand.
"MP3s will also soon be available. I will be uploading them to my MySpace page either tomorrow or on Monday through Snocap. I'll also be adding finished versions of a couple of songs on the player. But, by having the MP3s there, you will be able to hear clips of all the songs."
The artist goes into further detail about the musical direction to Mission Of One:
“While I attempted to mix in elements of all types of music I like into this project, this ends up sounding very classic rock. Everything from the guitar sounds to the way the songs are written just screams circa 1978-1984. This is by no means a "metal" record, but it is going to rock! Even the couple of slow songs that were meant to be more P&W style come off as more of a classic rock sound seeing that I threw some guitar leads in there, too.”
Mission Of One is being released in follow up to the groups 2004 debut Take Another Swig and follow up effort from 2005 Show Me The Way.
Mission Of One track listing:
2. “Give In To Him”
3. “Man Overboard”
4. “I Will Worship You”
5. “He's Been Good To Me”
6. “Be Yourself”
7. “Are You Listening?”
8. “The End”
9. “I'd Do It All Again”
10. “I Fall Down”
NEAL MORSE to release live concert 2-DVD set, Sola Scriptura & Beyond:
Press Release / Neal More has accomplished the almost unheard of in commercial music: After 15 years, 22 albums, 3 bands, and 4 concert DVDs, his last two albums (Sola Scriptura and Question) have been received as his best. Now, Morse and his new band bring both albums to the screen, live on 2 DVDS; plus over an hour of other great performances, and 100 minutes of behind-the-scene footage.
Sola Scriptura was one of the most ambitious, controversial, and critically acclaimed progressive rock albums in recent memory. The album finds Morse unflinching in his depiction of corruption in the Church throughout history, and the consequences of humankind’s attempts to elevate itself to God. Lauded equally in Europe and the United States by the mainstream and CCM press, the album adorned numerous “Best of 2007” lists.
Question is a journey on the timeless quest to find the dwelling place of God. Lyrically, Neal creates a compelling story-line that owes as much to C.S. Lewis as Indiana Jones. Neal searches through history, within the nature of men, and across Neal’s own life. The accolades range by genre from mainstream progressive rock (Dutch Prog Rock Pages, Netherlands: “Top 5 Albums of the Year”), to Contemporary Christian (Cross Rhythms, UK: “10 out of 10 stars”), to modern rock (The National Review Online, US: “Album of the Year”), to hardcore metal (Metal Glory, Germany: “10 out of 10 stars”).
All the material from both albums is performed in its entirety, with all the energy, surprises, and unforgettable moments of a great live concert. Sola Scriptura is played straight through; Question is played combining two concerts. In addition, Neal performs a major portion of his acclaimed One album, and portions of his ground-breaking Testimony release.
Neal’s complex structures, rapid-fire parts, and elaborate arrangements need just the right performers to ignite his music. He finds them in five extraordinary, young—and unknown— musicians. With the intensity of a new band with something to prove, they tear through parts recorded by Mike Portnoy, Randy George ,Paul Gilbert, Jordan Rudess, and others. At the center is Neal Morse, a remarkably passionate and engaging performer. Neal brings the album’s story to life with soaring, emotional vocals. Morse is also a virtuoso multi-instrumentalist performing lead guitar and keyboard. After his last concert DVD (2004’s Testimony), England’s Classic Rock Magazine listed Neal in their “100 Greatest Frontmen of Rock” chart.
The show doesn’t end, though, with the fading echoes of the final note. Backstage, in and around cities throughout Europe, the cameras accompany Neal and his band on their journey. Uncensored experiences and candid moments reveal the good, the bad, and the unexpected of life on the road. Being a prog visionary doesn’t help the bus go back 110 miles for forgotten sandwiches, find a drug store at 2AM when those sandwiches turn out to be older than the bus, or ask for directions at 3AM because nobody knows where they are now. Sola Scriptura & Beyond captures two spectacular performances (including one full concert) from two amazing nights. His most recent solo releases are performed with the excitement of his first with Spock’s Beard. Over an hour of additional performances feature favorites from his other two studio prog albums, a Transatlantic interlude, and five songs from Spock’s Beard.
Travel from the last decade of prog to today, and from the backstage to the soundstage. Capturing a thousand timeless moments, Sola Scriptura & Beyond manifests musicians and audience uniting to create an electrifying musical phenomenon. Join Morse and a new generation of prog musicians as they unleash Neal’s very best, as you’ve never seen or heard it—and beyond.
Further reading: www.nealmorse.com/pages/discography.asp?n=solascripturaandbeyond
Angelic Warlord interview - Christine Steel of ARSENAL:
I would like to know some biographical information about Arsenal. When did the band form? How did its members meet?
The original band formed in the mid to late 80's. We met in a church we were all attending. The final band members came together through various other means, including advertising. What I mean by that is that I placed ads for certain members and the rest is history (or HIS Story!). Read Full Interview >>
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
BARREN CROSS to record new album:
Lead vocalist Michael Drive (formerly Michael Lee) provides further details:
“First and foremost; I am happy to announce: BARREN CROSS is officially 100% BACK!
"There has been great healing done in the band, and we are being raised up to an entirely new level. We are back in form and are out there performing again! In fact there are 72 great new live BARREN CROSS photos up if you want to see them, located on the BARREN CROSS MySpace page: www.myspace.com/barrencross
"I have a website with some great stuff on it if you want to see it: www.michaeldrive.com Also, BARREN CROSS has a new website that is well under construction (thanks to Greg Hays). It looks great already; check it out: www.barrencross.com/
"Your letters have not gone unnoticed. So now, I am very happy to formerly make this announcement:
"BARREN CROSS is not just “talking” about it, but we have now, as of this last week, officially decided to record a brand new full length album! Inspiration like never before has already begun; we have already started writing for it! As a writer and the lead singer since our inception in 1983, I can feel it already; this is going to be, by far, the best BARREN CROSS album ever put out. I would like to add that the table is now open for any offers from producers and studios who would like to be involved with us. This is going to be greater than anything we have ever done. Contact info is at the bottom of this email.
"And concerning BARREN CROSS, if you want to catch up on 2 of the most popular and influential albums that we have released, Atomic Arena and State Of Control.
"Now, this is where most of you come in: It is very possible that I will be embarking on a 2 month “solo-unplugged” tour of the United States either this fall or winter. Right now is a period of time when the venues have the opportunity to get an “MD” show booked, and following this period, when there are enough venues booked, we will be contacting all of them to schedule the dates. This is where you come in: I’m asking you to contact whoever you know that might be interested in having me perform, whether it’s your church, club, or other.
"In case you don’t know, in the modern rock genre, I have been doing solo albums and performances, both solo-unplugged, OR with a band: mostly in Europe in the recent years, as I was based in Paris, France; but also in the U.S., where I am now based, in Hollywood, CA; the land of my childhood.
"Now, on a spiritual note:
"For those of you who don’t know, on June 26, 2006, I had a very powerful encounter with God, and a radical transformation that followed. It’s the most incredible thing that ever happened to me. If you would like to read about this, you can find it here: www.michaeldrive.com/en/spiritual.shtml
I hope that I will have the opportunity to meet many of you. Please drop me a line with any questions or comments you may have. My email address is: firstname.lastname@example.org.”
New Pastor Brad project updates:
Posted by the artist at the Christian Metal Realm:
“I just want to let everyone know that I have been very busy recording. I have material for 3 albums about 90% recorded: Shredomatic (the 4th in the PB Shred Series), Heavenly Shred (disc 5 in the Shred Series- all 'instrumetal' versions of Classic Hymns) and Windlan - the debute album under that new name . And I will soon begin recording material (already written) for a fourth disc, the second Windlan album called, Back Breaker.
Why am I doing all this recording all at once? The time is just right--the inspiration is there- I have the time, and the schedules of the guest players are such that they are available right now. And there are some killer guests (I'm working on "bio pages" for all of them") they'll be up soon @ guitarjams.net
There will also be a n ew album series based upon the Book of Revelation. I'm also starting to write songs for a series of albums I'm going to call Windows On Revelation. All of these songs will be vocal tunes, which is a bit of a switch for me since most of my recent material has been instrumental. Each song will be based on a section of the Book Of Revelation and will come with a small group Bible study/discussion guide that you can use to lead a Bible study. When it's completed I will cover the whole book of Revelation. I think this will be a very cool offering. My view of Revelation is very different from the Pre-Trib view popularized by Tim LaHaye. I really focus on how the first century Christian (the origina recipients) would have understood the letter. It will be a VERY encouraging study!
Sophomore album from THE SEVENTH POWER, Dominion & Power:
Press Release / Las Vegas, Nevada based THE SEVENTH POWER (released its) critically acclaimed self titled debut in 2006. With the follow up release expect more quasi-doomy brilliance from the Masters of Heavy Metal. With Dominion & Power, fans are once again treated to another colossal collaboration between axe-shredder extraordinaire Bill Menchen (TITANIC, FINAL AXE) and world-class drummer Robert Sweet of STRYPER. Menchen exceeds his lofty reputation with addictive riffs throughout; laced with fast, fluid, and emotion-filled guitar solos ala Randy Rhoades. Efficient and flashy as a guitar virtuoso, not a single note is wasted!
Sweet proves that his tribal beats and precision drumming are perfect for the massive heavy riffs shelled forth by THE SEVENTH POWER! Filled with monster riff after monster riff, Dominion & Power comes together to create a cohesive slab of dark metal with perfect flow, and an escalating sense of creepiness powered along by Menchen's Ozzy-styled brooding vocals – both monotonous and hypnotic! Lyrically, the album gallops forth with doom n' gloom, book of Revelation vintage apocalyptic themes countered with both salvation and redemption.
Brilliant artwork by Finnish artist Jan Yrlund only rounds out the thick, beefy production and unabashed heaviness unleashed by THE SEVENTH POWER. This is New Wave of British Heavy Metal at it's finest. And Dominion & Power proves to be an essential building block in putting together the perfect heavy metal collection.
Dominion & Power track listing:
1. “Dominion & Power”
2. “Everlasting Fire”
4. “Heavy Laden”
5. “King Of All Kings”
6. “Raise ‘M High”
7. “Sacrificial Blood”
8. “Sea Of Galilee”
9. “The Clouds”
10. “Under The Altar”
THE SEVENTH POWER online: www.facebook.com/theseventhpower
* DARKWATER uploaded a video to the track “The Play II”: www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZWTIRkcHyQ8
* THE HEAL is a bluesy hard rock project from guitarist Rex Carroll (WHITECROSS, THE FALL): https://myspace.com/rexcarrolltheheal
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
Spring releases on CMS Sweden/Rivel Records:
DIVINEFIRE - Farewell:
Press Release / DIVINEFIRE was formed in the spring of 2004 as a result of a collaboration between Finnish composer and drummer, Jani Stefanovic (SINS OF OMMISSION & RENASCENT) and vocalist Christian Liljegren (NARNIA). The two added bassist Andreas Olsson (NARNIA, ROB ROCK & STORMWIND) to the bands line up a couple of months later.
DIVINEFIRE combines the heaviness of melodic extreme metal with the melodies of symphonic hardrock/metal blended with beautiful vocal harmonies. The result has been a tremendous mix and it takes the listener on an illustrious adventure and celebrated musical journey. Christian, Jani & Andreas understood this very well and have worked very hard during since 2004 and have delivered four incredible studio albums: Glory Thy Name, Hero, Into A New Dimension and last, but certainly not least, the bands most recent work, Farewell.
When DIVINEFIRE started to write the material for Farewell in 2007, the goal was to combine the variety of its three previous releases with top of the line production values. What we get on Farewell is all the elements that made Glory Thy Name, Hero and Into A New Dimension succesful but with added edge and power. Production values are warmer and more dynamic but still heavy and powerful.
Joining DIVINEFIRE ON Farewll is Christian’s younger brother Hubertus Liljegren (ex CRIMSON MOONLIGHT) on "growling“ vocals (Hubertus also made a guest appearance on the bands debut Glory Thy Name). Mats Levén ( ex. THERION, AT VANCE, YNGWIE MALMSTEEN’S RISING FORCE) will be handling the backing vocals. Mats has worked with Christian previoulsy in AUDIOVISION and NARNIA in addition to contributing lead vocals to several tracks on ESSENCE OF SORROW’s debut Reflections Of The Obscure. Carl Johan Grimmark returns to provide most of the albums lead guitar work.
All around, DIVINEFIRE fans will not be disappointed in that they still get all the elements that have made the group succesful: big bombastic sound with symphonic elements mixed with extreme metal.
Farewell track listing: “Calling The World”, “Unity”, “You Will Never Walk Away”, “Pass The Flame”, “Grow And Follow”, “My Roots Are Strong In You”, “King Of Kings”, “Heal Me”, “Farewell”
REINXEED - The Light:
Press Release / The story of REINXEED got its start in Boden, a town located in North Sweden. REINXEED, a musical creation and vision of Tommy Johanssons, will finally see the light with it’s debut album The Light.
Tommy Johansson started to play guitar at the age of 9 after had seen a Gary Moore video, “Out in the Fields”, and singing at the age of 15 when he was introduced to the SKID ROW track “18 And Life”. His days of soft rock were over when he first heard HELLOWEEN and STRATOVARIUS.
After a couple of years in a music school, Tommy had become more of an "all around musician" who could play almost everything, including guitar, piano, singing, drums, bass guitar and also flute! His songwriting had of course developed to a more advanced level. In 2006, he decided that a movie soundtracks mixed with melodic power metal would be very cool (type of) music to compose and record. He got his own studio together, started to record these songs again with a better quality, and put them up on his MySpace site. By doing that, Daniel Eskilsson, drummer and band leader of the Swedish melodic power metal band MAJESTIC VANGUARD, heard Tommy’s songs and got him in touch with Christian Liljegren of CMS/ Rivel Records. Jani Stefanovic (DIVINEFIRE & ESSENCE OF SORROW) co-produced & mixed the album in additon to handling all the drums.
This is the first chapter of the REINXEED history and the band is really looking forward for the future of touring and recording albums.
The REINXEED concept story of The Light:
“This is a story between good and evil, where greed and power are united to conquer both sides into one dark place. “ReinXeed – The Light” is a story of the real life we live today, but summarized in to metaphors in a story of two kingdoms, Reindhill and Heelh. Once they were united as one, God sent them a flower to grow called Langarin, which had a healing divine power that was used for good only. But greed fell over the land of Heelh and they lay claim to the Langarin, and the harmony between them ended in silence. Reindhill got the quest from God to retain the goodness and restore the line between good and evil, for the prophecy of a perfect world had to be...” Tommy Johansson.
The Light track listing: “The Light”, “Great Hall Of ReinXeed”, “Eternity”, “Northern Sky”, “End Of This Journey”, “Legacy”, “Magic Might”, “Shyrheny”, “Kingdom Fall”, “Heavenly Fire”
STONEFUZE - Stonefuze:
Press Release / STONEFUZE (formerly CORNERSTONE SWE) gives you raw and heavy hard rock with loads of attitude guaranteed to make your spines shiver. After a long break, the band got together again (in) the summer of 2006 and did a few gigs in Scandinavia. In the summer of 2007 the band entered the studio to record their fourth album, the debut album while under the new moniker STONEFUZE. This record is a lot heavier and more intense then the others and will fill your soul with raw energy. In the process of making a new album and to mark a new era it also felt natural to rename the band.
STONEFUZE comes from the southern parts of Sweden and is well known for their high-octanesque sound and reputation as a live act. The band was formed as CORNERSTONE in 1989 and soon got something of a reputation as a real live band. They have done several tours in Sweden as well as playing festivals in Europe and Scandinavia. When the band started 1989, they were into southern rock with some acoustic sound. By 1990 and 1991 the band had experienced some turnover and started to play more powerful blues rock. At this time they started to become well known as a great live band with lots of energy. 1997 saw Mick Nordström (MODEST ATTRACTION & FLAGSHIP) join the band-helped them to change their sound in a heavier way.
Stonefuze track listing: “Alive”, “Apocalyptic”, “Fire And Flames”, “Motor Music”, “Pollution Solution”, “Redeemer”, “Just Do It”, “Pour Some Love”, “Loud Guitars”, “Grinding”, “Unknown”
Christian Liljegren departs NARNIA:
As recently reported in a statement from the vocalist:
“I felt for a long time that I needed to take a long break and I shared this with my friends and members of NARNIA. This is something I have felt since 2006 and it was a very hard decision to make because NARNIA is very big part of my life and it will always be. The others guys will continue and I will not stop them and I wish them the best of luck to continue the mission to spread the good news about JESUS CHRIST. I feel good and peaceful inside and it was a right decision to make for me in my life situation.
“I will continue to do music and run my record label CM Sweden/ Rivel Records. I am also working on a new solo album in Swedish where I will do some NARNIA songs with Swedish lyrics. Concerts are planned but all is delayed because right now I need time to rest.
“You will hear my voice on some albums this year. The final studio album with DIVINEFIRE called Farewell will be out JUNE 20, and I am one of the vocalists on the second album with the band 7 DAYS.
“I am forever thankful for all the memories I have had with CJ, Andreas & Andreas and all fantastic support and prayers from NARNIA fans all over the world. Please continue to support the band. I will also thank my manager and friend Rainer Mittelstädt at MCM Music for the great work for NARNIA and also Niclas & Frippe DOT Music in Sweden and of course all record labels who has released the NARNIA albums.
“I am very blessed to sing for my KING & SAVIOUR JESUS CHRIST and I am looking forward for the future what GOD has planned for me.
“IN CHRIST WE ARE STRONG!”
* Latest from DELOREAN: “As many of you know, the band has gone through a lot of changes over the last three years. Our lineup has changed, our sound has evolved and we've grown as people and as musicians. In light of our recent rejuvenation, and - quite frankly - because there is another "DELOREAN" that is signed and touring internationally (yea, we know you haven't heard of them- we hadn't either; until we got invited to Spain to play at the running of the bulls in Pamplona, or something like that) we are reemerging with a new name, REBORN. Not to worry, our line up hasn't changed at all. We're still the five hot rockers you've all come to love. With the upcoming release of our new album, Edge of Existence, drawing near there's no better opportunity to rise from the ashes a new band. Thanks for your support, and we'll be seein' ya soon!"
* Guitarist Bill Menchen (TITANIC, THE SEVENTH POWER) conducted a recent interview with Metal To Infinity: http://mtibelgium.00freehost.com/InterviewTITANIC.html
EDEN’S WAY - Rock Solid
What we have in Eden’s Way is a blend of melodic metal, hard rock and arena rock heavily influenced by the eighties. The band can deliver some tasteful melodic rock and AOR moments as well. Read Full Review >>
GRAVE ROBBER - Be Afraid
Musically, what we have in Grave Robber is a melding of punk and hard rock with occasional Goth and melodic metal moments thrown in. Think Rackets And Drapes, The Misfits, Alice Cooper, Type O Negative, GWAR, Kiss, Danzig and Rob Zombie. Read Full Review >>
JACOBS DREAM - Dominion Of Darkness
Dominion Of Darkness picks up where Drama Of The Ages (and all the bands previous efforts) leaves off by heading in a classic US power metal direction. Also similar to Drama Of The Ages, Dominion Of Darkness gives prominence to the heavier and more guitar driven sound – fans of Iron Maiden, Queensryche, Sacred Warrior, Barren Cross and Scepter will find a lot to like here – while still showcasing the groups penchant for composing a song with a solid chorus hook. Read Full Review >>
SCARLET RAYNE - Theater Humanitarian (re-issue)
Scarlet Rayne can best be described as classic power metal – you will find an old school vibe throughout Theater Humanitarian – inviting a comparison to contemporaries Sacred Warrior, Recon, Queensryche, Fates Warning, Barren Cross and Iron Maiden. More recent acts such as Jacobs Dream (David Taylor era), The Sacrificed and Faith Factor must be mentioned as well. Read Full Review >>
SEVENTH AVENUE - Terium
What stands out most about Terium – a 15 song album featuring over 70 minutes of music – is its remarkable consistency in that all its material holds up under repeated play (not something you could always say about the bands past efforts). As a matter of fact, founding member Herbie Langhans (vocals/guitars) has mastered the art of melodic based songwriting. Read Full Review >>
THE SEVENTH POWER - Dominion & Power
Dominion & Power finds The Seventh Power continuing to draw upon the influences of straightforward heavy metal and hard rock. The main difference this time around is that Menchen pursues a more stripped down and back to the basics musical direction- at least in comparison to the self-titled debut. Read Full Review >>
SHINING STAR - Reset
I like to take the stance that change is good and, as a result, applaud a group when it decides to explore new musical territory. Let’s face facts: Fabio Rocha and company could easily have chosen to “play it safe” by recording “Another” Fatal Mistake or Enter Eternity “Again”; rather they make an about face by giving us what is by far the heaviest work from Shining Star to date. Read Full Review >>
TILES - Fly Paper
On Fly Paper Tiles continues to stay true to its roots by giving us (in the bands own words) "a blend of progressive rock complexity and soaring vocal melodies with an aggressive hard rock edge”. This is best demonstrated on lengthy progressive based tracks such as the three part “Markers” (6:56), sublime “Dragons, Dreams & Daring Deeds” (8:09) and Rush influenced “Hide And Seek” (8:31). Read Full Review >>
Angelic Warlord interview - Jon Bålefalk of INCRAVE:
Incrave released its new album, Dead End, last month. Why don’t you go ahead and tell us a little bit about Dead End, specifically the writing and recording process.
As I mentioned before, we live far from each other so we write the music with the help of the Internet. We’ve got our own home studios that we record our ideas and then put the ideas up on a closed site where the other members can listen, give critique and record their own ideas on each song. Read Full Interview >>
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
ROB ROCK officially back in IMPELLITTERI:
Courtesy of www.blabbermouth.net and ShoutLife:
IMPELLITTERI guitarist Chris Impellitteri has issued the following update:
"First, I want to thank Guitar World magazine for including IMPELLITTERI in their “50 Fastest Guitarist of All Time” article. That was really nice of them to include me. I am definitely guilty of playing hyper-speed all too often. However, many people tell me I am the guitarist who probably started the craze of hyper-speed shred with the IMPELLITTERI Black EP.
"Now on to [IMPELLITTERI's] new record titled Good And Evil. The new music is being mixed in Vancouver with Greg Reely (DEVILDRIVER, FEAR FACTORY, etc.). I can say that this is by far the most amazing recording I have been involved with. It is filled with amazing riffs, fast shredding solos, screaming vocals, and of course a brutal rhythm section.
"The goal of this record was to make a historic album that will rival Van Halen 1, OZZY's Blizzard Of Oz, PANTERA's Cowboys From Hell, YNGWIE's Rising Force, METALLICA's Master Of Puppets, and even new artists like CHILDREN OF BODOM and AVENGED SEVENFOLD. And so, IMPELLITTERI Good And Evil is my attempt to rival the best. Hopefully, we have done our job well!! It was not easy.
"And now for all of the patient fans Rob Rock (vocals) is officially back in the band."
Rob Rock offers his thoughts:
“Rob Rock is currently in the studio recording vocals for the new IMPELLITTERI album titled Good And Evil. Rob reunites with long time friend and guitarist Chris Impellitteri for their first collaboration together since the IMPELLITTIER Crunch album. This album will bring back some of the classic Rob Rock/Chris Impellitteri sounds of Screaming Symphony, Answer To The Master and Eye Of The Hurricane along with some new sounds as well.”
IMPELLITTERI online: www.facebook.com/chris.impellitteri.7
SHINING STAR to Reset on third album:
Founding SHINING STAR member Fabio Rocha (guitars) has joined forces with DESTRA bassist Ricardo Parronchi to put together the group’s third full length release, Reset. The album finds SHINING STAR treading heavier musical territory to create a work characterized by “strong melodies, aggressive lyrics, guitars tuned in D and powerful vocals”. It also must be noted that no keyboards were used in the recording process. Parronchi takes on lead vocal duties - Rodrigo Collombo handles bass - and brings a gritty and low key vocal style as opposed to the high end delivery of Lance King (AVIAN), who performed on SHINING STAR’s 2005 Nightmare Records sophomore effort Enter Eternity.
The São Paulo, Brazil based group debuted on Megahard Records in 2000 with the full length offering Fatal Mistake.
Reset track listing:
2. “Desperate and Suffocated”
3. “Radiation Flame”
5. “Enslaved By Fury”
6. “Reign Of Terror”
7. “I Hate You”
8. “You're Sick”
9. “Tell Me”
11. “Guilty Of Crime”
12. “Karma” (Brazilian bonus track)
THE VASELINE RATES release debut album, Intelligent Design:
Press Release / The V-RATS album Intelligent Design is now (finished). Many thanks to Mark and Sheena at M2 Studios. We’re aiming to have it available for release the middle of June and yes! We will be having a launch party!
Regrettably we have had to drop “CTVC” off the album, as we couldn’t get a publishing license from the Jimi Hendrix estate. We sent them a version of the track and apparently when I spoke to them they claimed the guitar was TOO accurate and said we had sampled Jimi’s riff in computer software! The fact is Paul May played the riff too accurately for them and they didn’t believe it wasn’t a sample! I’m sure Jimi would have given us his blessing but there you go! Either way, we’re looking to getting the album out. It’s an absolute scorcher!
Speaking of Paul May. He now along with Mike Dejager is an official Marshall Amplification Endorsee! Well done Paul and thanks for the support from the guys At Marshall Amplification.
Intelligent Design track listing:
1. “No Good For Me”
2. “Dirty Little Secret”
3. “Know Definition”
4. “et al”
6. “Point Of No Return”
7. “So Over You”
8. “All The Ones”
9. “South Of My Heart”
10. “Devil To Pay”
11. “Blood Demons & Whisky”
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE compilation, 4 All: The Best Of LNJ:
LIBERTY N' JUSTICE 4 All: The Best Of LNJ is being released across North America on April 1st. It features songs from the last three LNJ records (which featured guest vocals from Lou Gramm of FOREIGNER, Sebastian Bach, Jani Lane of WARRANT, Michael Sweet of STRYPER to name a few). It all so features 4 brand new tracks recorded exclusively for this CD featuring guest vocals by Dug Pinnick of KINGS X, Steve Brown of TRIXTER/ STEREO FALLOUT, Derrick Lefevre of LILLIAN AX and Dale & Troy Thompson of BRIDE.
LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE will also be covering the old FEAR NOT tune “We Have A God” (from the bands 1993 self-titled debut). The song even features a guest appearance by original FEAR NOT vocalist Larry Worley.
Unlike other LNJ CDs the "Best Of" will be available at first only at retail locations in North America and exclusively in Europe though MusicBuyMail and ArtistWorxx. More info soon....
4 All: The Best Of LNJ track listing (with guest appearances):
New tracks: “We have A God” (Derrick Lefevre of LILLIAN AX & Larry Worley of FEAR NOT), “Rage” (Dug Pinnick of KING’S X), “Devil In The Details” (Steve Brown of TRIXTER/ STEREO FALLOUT), “Author Of The Flame” (Dale & Troy Thompson of BRIDE)
From Welcome To The Revolution (2004): “Blind Man's Bluff” (Michael Sweet of STRYPER), “Noise” (Jamie Rowe of GUARDIAN), “Shed My Skin” (Lou Gramm of FOREIGNER)
From Soundtrack Of A Soul (2006): “Another Nail” (Sebastian Bach ex-SKID ROW), “Sight Unseen” (Leif Garret), “Flinch” (Tony Harnell ex-TNT), “Thy Will Be Done” (Mark Slaughter of SLAUGHTER & Pete Loran of TRIXTER), “Killer Grin” (Stephen Pearcey of RATT)
From Independence Day (2007): “Doubting Thomas” (John Corabi ex-MOTLEY CRUE/RATT/UNION), “Monkey Dance” (Jack Russell of GREAT WHITE), “Soldier” (Kelly Keagey of NIGHT RANGER & Mark Slaughter of SLAUGHTER), “Independence Day” (Kelly Kelling of BATON ROUGE/ TSO), “Praying For A Miracle” (Ted Poley of DANGER DANGER), “Addiction” (Jani Lane ex-WARRANT)
Good new and bad news to report from THEOCRACY:
First, the bad news...
We regret to announce that bassist Patrick Parris has decided to step down from THEOCRACY. Patrick has decided to concentrate exclusively on vocal duties for Atlanta band ECLIPSED BY INSANITY, and we wish him the best in everything he does. This decision was completely amicable and there are no hard feelings either way. Patrick is extremely talented, and we know his talents will take him far.
You can read Patrick’s statement at the THEOCRACY forum: www.ultimatemetal.com/forum/theocracy/392653-patrick-parris-resigns-theocracy.html
Now, the good news...
The label that THEOCRACY is signing to for the release of Mirror of Souls is in the final stages of finalizing the contract, so watch this space for news on that front very soon. The artwork is being handled by the very talented guys at Invisible Creature, and the album will be mastered by the legendary Mika Jussila at Finnvox Studios. We will have a release date for you soon, so stay tuned!”
VERTICAL ALIGNMENT announce new project, The Trail Of Tears Suite:
Press Release / The Trail of Tears Suite is a concept album that tells the tale of the Cherokee Nation. With over two hours of cutting edge progressive rock music filled with Native stylings, this project explores the history of this First Nations people from before contact with Europeans through the infamous Trail of Tears and beyond history to the near future. The Suite was conceived as a testimony of a noble people who have been cruelly displaced by the greed of white men. Their ongoing tale is one of victorious overcoming through the power of their Creator even amidst crushing and impossible odds.”
Mike Florio will be lending his talents to the album as well:
Mike Florio joins VERTICAL ALIGNMENT in this epic project. Contributing his awesome vocal skills and his keyboard virtuosity, Mike is a welcome addition to the VA ranks. He also shows his songwriting chops in several places. His talents in arranging and mixing add a new richness to the signature VA sound.
VERTICAL ALIGNMENT is a band/recording project that paints both epic musical pictures and shorter vignettes. Taking such influences as old GENESIS and YES, early MARILLION, and very current GLASS HAMMER, VA creates a style that is all their own. Using intricate instrumentation and richly stacked vocal harmonies, the group uses both odd time signatures and memorable hooks to keep your attention. Most of all, VA are storytellers. Right from the start in the VA 2006 full length debut Signposts, the group used historical incidents to create progressive epics. From the Titanic to the then very current and hot Iraq War, VA offered a unique perspective on events in our world. The tradition continued on the 2009 follow up effort Lost In Space.
VERTICAL ALIGNMENT online: www.facebook.com/VerticalAlignment
* Bullroser Records signed HB, a female fronted symphonic metal group from Finland that has received comparison to NIGHTWISH. Frozen Inside, HB’s Bullroser debut, will be released on April 23, 2008. A video the group recently uploaded of the track “It Is Time” can be viewed at: www.youtube.com/watch?v=teL3dZCJXUA
* IMPELLITTERI uploaded live footage of “Overture” and “Visual Prism” being performed during its 1995 Answer To The Master tour of Japan: www.youtube.com/watch?v=xikV1UmOAsU
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
New DVD and album on the way from DELIVERANCE:
In a recent post at the Christian Metal Realm, founding member Jimmy P. Brown announces the upcoming release of a live DVD:
“Mike Phillips (guitars) will be releasing a DVD of our show in California on January 4th, 2008. It was well shot and edited. Although there were some goofs here and there, the show came out OK. But the DVD guy did a great job with the menu and such. I am not sure when Mike will be releasing it but it should be in the next couple of months. The songs are as follows: “Cause & Effect”, “As Above - So Below”, “No Time”, “Stay of Execution”, “Windows of the Soul”, “Not To Good For Me”, “Pseudo Intellectual”, “Ramming Speed”, “Sanctuary”, “Weapons of our Warfare” & “This Present Darkness”
“Then, we encored with a cover... Now, I know we’re gonna hear some crap about it but you might as well know upfront it was just for fun!!! We covered SLAYER's "Reign in Blood". And by the way it came out KILLER!!!
“It is Kevin Lee's (drums) last show with us as he has moved to Colorado. So, it was memorable. We had a blast! That's all that matters. But, there are interviews and commentary and all sorts of fun stuff. So, I think it will be worth the $10.”
DELIVERANCE is also at work on its next album. Brown goes into further detail at the Christian Metal Realm:
“Mike Phillips and I are writing for the next album. I am considering another concept record but as most of you know my thoughts change minute to minute. LOL. But we are planning on another release by the end of the year. And, by the end of the summer, Mike and I have been toying around with a CD release of older songs re-recorded and what not for fun!!! Jim Chaffin (drums) will be joining us as well as some other surprise guests. It should be a lot of fun!!!”
DELIVERANCE online: www.facebook.com/DeliveranceRocks
INCRAVE to release sophomore album, Dead End:
Press Release / The Swedish heavy/power metal band INCRAVE will release their new album Dead End (on) April 25th in Europe through Ulterium Records. The album will be distributed by Sound Pollution in Scandinavia and by Metal Heaven in the rest of Europe. The North American release date will take place on May 13th.
Dead End was mixed and mastered by Per Ryberg (TAD MOROSE, MORGANA, LEFAY, BLOODBOUND) and the album artwork painted by Kristian Wåhlin (AT THE GATES, EMPEROR, THERION,ETC). Guests on the album include Daniel Olsson (TAD MOROSE) and Markus Sigfridsson (DARKWATER, HARMONY, 7 DAYS).
Dead End track listing:
2. “The Forgotten”
3. “A Shadow In The Dark”
4. “The Touch Of Death”
5. “Unveil The Truth”
6. “Shades Of Me”
7. “An Empty Soul”
8. “Scream In Silence”
9. “Never More”
10. “Dead End”
Ulterium Records online: www.ulterium-records.com/news.html
INCRAVE online: www.facebook.com/incraveofficial
JERUSALEM announce new album:
Vocalist & guitarist Ulf Christiansson offers further detail:
“Thought I would give a report on how things are going at the JERUSALEM front. In September last year me, Michael (Ulvsgard – drums) and Peter (Carlsohn – bass) started to talk about the possibilities of making a new JERUSALEM album.
“We decided to fast and pray and meet every night for 2 weeks for this. We felt we wanted to create a record based on the ways we made Prophet, where we basically walked into the studio, started the tape-recorder (after a time of praising and thanking God) and then playing whatever comes up in our spirits and minds.
“All the songs on Prophet where created in this way (“City On Fire”, “Risen”, etc). And it's been exiting to see what has been coming out of this. I feel there's a new freshness and joy. We have now done this for 2-3 hours (mainly Tuesdays) almost once a week up ‘til now.
“At this time we have about sixteen 90 minute tapes (approx. 1440 minutes) packed with all that happened during our sessions. It sounds different and we are exited. During the following weeks we will have to choose from all this material and decide what we will keep on working more on and not...
“We are doing this without keyboards at this time. It's only the three of us - guitar/vocals, drums and bass - and it sounds very "airy" and open. We may add up some keyboards at the end, but it will not be as dominating as on earlier productions.
“So when will it be released? Well, if we can have it done for September it would be great. All three of us are pretty busy with many other things we are involved in, but it would be great if it could be done by September.”
* Arkeyn Steel Records to re-issue out of print 1990 SCARLET RAYNE debut, Theater Humanitarian: "From Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA, SCARLET RAYNE has released a magnificent private piece of power/progressive metal ala early QUEENSRYCHE. Focused in melody and enforced with apocalyptic but still catchy guitar themes and crystal clear vocals, this is for sure NOT to be missed. Brilliant compositions. Christian lyrics. In its original form this is one of the rarest private pressings of the 90s. Available again on CD: fully re-mastered, new artwork, complete lyrics, unreleased photoS plus an in depth biography. Vinyl edition limited to 500 copies. Both editions will feature 4 never released before bonus tracks.
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
Debut album from FAITH FACTOR, Against A Darkened Sky:
Press Release / FAITH FACTOR, the New Jersey-based Christian power metal band featuring ex-DEADLY BLESSING singer Ski, is scheduled to enter the studio today (Friday, February 15) to begin recording its full-length debut entitled Against A Darkened Sky. A November 1 release via Metallic Arch Angel Records is expected.
A studio report was recently provided by the band:
“We have begun the recording phase of the new album and the drum tracks are recorded. We have been thru 1 drum editing session, and Chris (Matusieski – guitars), Joe (Manghan – bass) and myself will be at Sound Hall Studios this weekend. Eight new songs will be on this album due mostly to some songs over the ten-minute mark. Against A Darkened Sky is the continuation of our acclaimed EP, 7/7/07, and lyrically God has provided the words to the message he wants us to bring to the masses. This album will be released via Metallic Archangel Records.”
In terms of musical direction, FAITH FACTOR describes the album as “basically a continuation on the EP that was released (last year). The material is straight out power metal while infusing a little prog here and there. The material was written especially with Ski (lead vocals) in mind so you can expect to hear him really push the boundaries.”
According to a band bio, "With crushing rhythms, soaring melodies and thundering appeal, FAITH FACTOR glorifies our savior and sends a message of eternal salvation through Jesus Christ. FAITH FACTOR uses a different approach utilizing a triple guitar attack, tight bombastic bass and drums, and melodic vocals with an aggressive edge. FAITH FACTOR consists of six musicians with a brotherhood serving our Lord Jesus Christ. Our mission is to spread the good news of salvation to the masses using music and biblically sound lyrics as the tool."
Joshua Perahia re-issues:
Press Release / Critically acclaimed melodic hard rock guitarist Joshua Perahia (of the band JOSHUA) has re-launched his web site at www.joshuaperahia.com
Joshua is also getting prepared to enter the studio with vocalist Jeff Fenholt, who was the lead singer on the 1985 JOSHUA album Surrender. The new album has tentative title of Resurrection.
In advance of the new record, Joshua is reissuing three of his classic albums, which have not been in print for six years. Newly re-mastered CD’s of The Hand is Quicker Than the Eye, Surrender (with new cover art), and Chapter One (with new cover art) will be available March 20 through his web site, CDBaby and many other hard rock mail order outlets worldwide.
Finally, keep an eye out for his much-anticipated DVD release Intense Defense: Live in the Studio, which features Rob Rock on vocals. The DVD will also include live footage from various appearances with guests Paul Shortino (ROUGH CUTT, QUIET RIOT), Neal Grusky (TAKARA) and Jeff Fenholt.
The Hand Is Quicker Than The Eye track listing: “Falling Again”, “November Is Going Away”, “Sweet ‘Lil Hurricane”, “A Song For Lisa”, “Let’s Breakaway”, “Broken Dream”, “Flying High”, “Portrait Of A Woman”
Surrender track listing: “Surrender”, “Heart Full Of Soul”, “Your Love Is Gone”, “Stay Alive (Go On Believing)”, “Rockin’ The World”, “Back To The Rock”, “Hold On”, “Show Me The Way”, “Loveshock”, “Rockin’ The World (Reprise)
Chapter One track listing: “Concrete Jungle”, “You Want It All”, “Steady Weapon”, “One Night Is Not Enough”, “Long Way To Heaven”, “Dark Days”, “It Must Be Love”, “Tears Of Joy”, “Walk Into The Light”, “Devil’s River, “Right On Target”
LETTER 7 - New album & line-up changes:
Press Release / Follow The Light will be the title to the sophomore album from Phoenix, Arizona based LETTER 7. Look for a summer release.
There are also several changes to report in the LETTER 7 line-up:
“Due to unforeseen circumstances, some big changes have been made during the recording phase of our second CD release. We have a new line up:
“On vocals: Steve Young -
Steve is a professional vocalist performing in bands such as ICON, ROCK CANDY AND SYLENCE. His style and stage presence adds a new fire to the LETTER 7 project!
“On Bass: Russ Adams -
Russ brings 18yrs experience on the bass including a brief journey with the Christian rock band HAVEN.
“On Drums: Tanner Siegfort -
Tanner is one of the best young drummers in the Phoenix area. Although we are currently still in the auditioning stages for drummers, his skills and dedication to our group so far has really been impressive.”
* Metal To Infinity interview with FAITH FACTOR vocalist Norman “Ski” Kiersnowski: http://mtibelgium.00freehost.com/InterviewFAITHFACTOR.html
BABYLON MYSTERY ORCHESTRA - Axis Of Evil
Musically, Axis Of Evil finds BMO continuing to traverse Goth and doom metal territory – you will find a dark and moody vibe prevalent throughout – with the occasional straightforward hard rock and classic metal influence. If anything, this proves the more accomplished work when compared to The Great Apostasy in that the material here comes across in a more accessible and song orientated manner. Read Full Review >>
INCRAVE - Dead End
Dead End can best be described as a musical continuation of The Escape in that the band maintains a melodic metal heading with the occasional power metal influence. Fans of Tad Morose, Nocturnal Rites, Essence Of Sorrow, Narnia and Mehida will be drawn into this as will those into XT, Leviticus, Teramaze, Laudamus and Stryper. Read Full Review >>
LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE - 4 All: The Best Of LNJ
As far as compilations go, 4 All: The Best of LNJ is as good as it gets- there is not a bad track here. Yes, I might have made a different selection or two here and there but you cannot go wrong with any of the songs chosen. Read Full Review >>
PASTOR BRAD - Shredded Sweet
Shredded Sweet, the third instrumental hard rock release from Altoona, Pennsylvania based minister Pastor Brad, continues where his very fine 2007 offering Reshredded leaves off. The album, for example, heads in an instrumental guitar (i.e.: “shred”) based direction certain to appeal to fans of Joe Satriani (Surfing With The Alien), Steve Vai (Passion And Warfare), David Chastain (Within The Heat & Elegant Seduction), Joey Tafolla (Out Of The Sun), James Byrd (Son Of Man) and Fourth Estate (Finesse And Fury & See What I See). Read Full Review >>
SAINT - Crime Scene Earth
On Crime Scene Earth Saint stays true to its form by giving us another slab of quality classic metal. All of the usual “suspects”, of course, come into play when inviting a direct comparison: Judas Priest, Armageddon, Metal Church, Accept and older Ultimatum. Read Full Review >>
SCREAM IN EDEN - Original Sin
Scream In Eden got its start in 1991 when it placed the track “Till The End” on the Star Song compilation Brave New World. After shortening its name to Eden, the group independently released its full length debut, Fan The Flame, in the mid-nineties but a lack of promotion prevented the album from receiving the acclaim and notoriety it deserved. Read Full Review >>
SOULJOURNERS - Mind Control
The experience of listening to Mind Control cannot help but leave one impressed with the strength of the groups musicianship. If anything, Souljourners captures the instrumental prowess – not to mention guitar driven heaviness – that makes other progressive bands such as Susprye and Darkwater so successful. Read Full Review >>
THIEVES & LIARS - When Dreams Become Reality
The seventies happened to be known as the “Me Decade”, an era characterized by not only the good (Pittsburgh Steelers, Star Wars) and the not so good (disco, Donny & Marie) but its quality metal and hard rock scene as well. And that is where San Diego, California based Thieves & Liars comes in with the unique seventies influenced hard rock of its 2008 Facedown debut When Dreams Become Reality. Read Full Review >>
Angelic Warlord interview - Sidney Allen Johnson of BABYLON MYSTERY ORCHESTRA:
You recently released the fourth full length BMO album, Axis Of Evil. What are your feelings about Axis Of Evil? Are you happy with the way the album turned out?
You will hear every artist claim that their latest record is their best one and they are always elated about how good it is. Well, on one hand I think that is true. I am very happy with this record and I am very happy with its predecessor The Great Apostasy: A Conspiracy Of Satanic Christianity. I think that both, together, are essentially a one-two punch. Read Full Interview >>
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
Rob Rock to front eighties metal project FIRES OF BABYLON:
Press Release / FIRES OF BABYLON, the classic 1980s-style, shredding U.S. heavy metal band featuring guitarist Lou St. Paul (WINTERS BANE), vocalist Rob Rock (ex-IMPELLITTERI), bassist Kelly Conlon (ex-DEATH and drummer Robert Falzano (ex-ANNIHILATOR will release its debut album on April 25, 2008 via Metal Heaven.
In 1990, guitarist Lou St. Paul formed WINTERS BANE and since that time has consistently displayed his excellent songwriting skills, playing great riffs and shredding solos over intelligent, well-thought-out lyrical essays. Highly impressed by Lou's playing on WINTERS BANE's album Redivivus, Metal Heaven's A&R representative Georg Siegl asked St. Paul to write the material and put together a band to record a classic '80s metal album - and FIRES OF BABYLON is the result.
Comments St. Paul: "I was asked if I would write and album with known players from other bands. Of course I said yes. We put the details together and soon the project was on."
And the music? 100% pure U.S. metal which, according to St. Paul, deals with "lyrical themes about relationships, struggles and triumphs, political commentary, and Biblical world views."
FIRES OF BABYLON line up:
Rob Rock - Lead Vocals
Lou St. Paul - Guitars
Kelly Conlon - Bass
Robert Falzano - Drums
Fires Of Babylon track listing:
1. “Falling To Pieces”
3. “When The Kingdom Comes”
4. “Lake Of Fire”
5. ”Holy Resurrection”
6. “Going Through Changes”
7. “Lazarus Rising”
8. “Revolution Coming”
9. “Generation Of Destruction”
10. “Castles Are Burning”
Rob Rock llive CD/DVD scheduled for 2009 release on AFM Records:
The ROB ROCK BAND is performing at the PPUSA festival in Atlanta on September 27th 2008. This performance will be recorded for a 2009 Live CD/DVD release on AFM records. The band (will) include his current Holy Hell and Garden Of Chaos line up:
Rob Rock - Lead Vocals
Carl Jjohan Grimmark - Guitars
Peter Halgren - Guitars
Andreas Olsson - Bass Guitar
Andreas Johansson - Drums
This super highly anticipated DVD is Rob's first official DVD release since the "Voice of Melodic Metal" began his 20 year singing career!
The DVD will also include bonus interviews, behind the scenes footage, and selections from current and past bands, tours, rehearsals and concert footage that has been previously unreleased.
This is also Rob's first ever live CD and will feature song performances from his four highly praised solo albums and other selections from his past studio recordings.
A definite must have for all ROB ROCK fans! More details to be revealed as we develop our production details of this very special release.
* The release of the sophomore DYNASTY album, Warriors Of The King, has been delayed until this spring. Further details as they become available.
* Lords Of Metal interview with Rob Rock: www.lordsofmetal.nl/en/interviews/view/id/1878
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
SEVENTH AVENUE unveils track listing & artwork to new album:
Courtesy of www.blabbermouth.net:
German Christian power metallers SEVENTH AVENUE will release their sixth studio album, Terium, on March 28 via Massacre Records. The "conceptual" CD - which is said to "deliver a complex fantasy story" - was produced by Herbie Langhans, was mastered by Sascha Paeth and has a running time of over 70 minutes.
Terium track listing:
1. “Under The Surface”
2. “Crowd In The Dark”
5. “Future's Dawn”
6. “Brighter Than The Sun”
8. “Two Masters”
9. “Hands Of The King”
10. “Priests And Servants”
11. “Trail Of Blood”
13. “Way To The Stars”
15. “New Era”
SEVENTH AVENUE line-up
Herbie Langhans - Lead Vocals & Guitars
Florian Gottsleben - Guitars
Markus Beck - Bass
Mike Pflüger - Drums
STRYPER to title new album Murder By Pride:
Vocalist Michael Sweet furnishes his thoughts about the meaning behind the albums title:
"Sometimes we are murdered by our pride, and our own pride overtakes everything else in our life and we are blinded to that," Michael Sweet said. "So many times our pride overtakes what we are supposed to do as believers."
A post by Michael at the STRYPER Forum updates the progress the band is making on Murder By Pride:
“As far as the new STRYPER record goes - I'm still tracking vocals in my studio and we plan to start mixing by the first week in February. We should be finished mixing by the end of February and then we'll master, do a photo shoot and then the rest will be up to artwork department at Big3 to put it all together and package it. I'm not confirming anything but I'd say it should be out July or August and of course a tour will follow later in the year. I know that some of you were expecting a release sooner but things have transpired that are out of our control and I can assure you that it will be worth the wait. The record sounds amazing and it will have everything that you've always wanted a STRYPER record to have - melodies, guitar solos, stacked vocal harmonies and screams. Sonically, it's our best to date. It's a very edgy record yet at the same time it retains it's melodic sense. I'll keep you updated as we progress.”
* Videos from Cornerstone California 2007 at Irvine, California on September 28-29, 2007 (includes performances from NEON CROSS, BARREN CROSS & BLOODGOOD: www.youtube.com/view_play_list?p=4261EE75AB73B30D
* The GUARDIAN blog of bassist David Bach: http://rollandrock.typepad.com/davidbach/christian_rock/index.html
Angelic Warlord interview with Egidio of BOARDERS:
How would you describe your music for those who haven't heard Boarders yet?
A mix of classic metal and thrash metal and hard rock. We should call it Thrash Rock to be honest! We pay particular attention to melodies and the message in the background of our music, which is strongly Christian based and positive. We put special emphasis on guitars, vocals based on a solid drum-bass groove. Read Full Interview >>
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
NEON CROSS anthology update:
Vocalist David Raymond Reeves provides the latest at Christian Hard Music:
“Well, here's the recording news:
“The anthology is nearly complete. It may even have to be "trimmed" a little cuz there's so much music. Right now we've got 19 tunes- 11 are finished, 5 are down to mix & mastering and 3 are little things like cleaning up backing vocals.
“I really like this "album" because it follows a logical progression by filling in the blanks. Twenty years of music and most people will see for the first time how we moved from Frontline Life to Neon Cross to Torn and beyond without it seeming quirky and abrupt.
“Right now it's a couple of cuts from everything, released and unreleased. Frontline Life, California Metal, Neon Cross, NCII, Premium Cuts, Torn, NC17, NC2000 (? this never had a real name, it was all techno-metal... never really finished), and our metal praise and worship thing (also nameless at this point).
“Anyone who made it out to Calistone got a live sampling of most of the unreleased stuff: “Nothing But the Blood”, “You're the One”, “Revolution”. We even did our live version of “Snake Eat Snake”, which appears on the latest LIBERTY N’ JUSTICE disc Independence Day.”
SAINT - Crime Scene Earth details revealed:
Press Release / SAINT, one of the pivotal groups to emerge from the eighties Christian metal scene, returns with Crime Scene Earth, its seventh studio album and the first since 2006’s The Mark.
Crime Scene Earth will be independently released by the Pacific Northwest based group worldwide on February 26, 2008.
Bassist Richard Lynch and guitarist Dee Harrington shared production duties, while Lynch, Harrington and Tom Nunes recorded and engineered the project at Armor Studio in Salem, Oregon. Nunes is accredited with mastering. Lynch also designed the cover artwork and CD layout.
Crime Scene Earth is the first SAINT project to feature Lynch on lead vocals, who fronts six of the albums tracks. Long-term vocalist Josh Kramer handles the remainder of the albums material, including a cover of the classic JUDAS PRIEST track “Invader” (making its initial appearance on Stained Class from 1978).
According to the group, Lynch took on a lead vocal role due to “the decision to head in a heavier direction on Crime Scene Earth, which is slightly heavier than The Mark, which is slightly heavier than In The Battle”. In the Battle came out in 2004 in follow up to the 1999 release The Perfect Life.
Crime Scene Earth track listing:
2. “Half A Time Measure”
3. “Terror In The Sky”
4. “Everlasting God”
5. “Crime Scene Earth”
6. “The Judas In Me”
7. “Too Many”
9. “Bended Knee”
* IMPELLITTERI re-issued its 1995 live album Live! Fast! Loud! as a special edition with new artwork and 2 bonus tracks! The long out of print Live! Fast! Loud! CD will now be available for ordering en mass once again. The re-issue contains TONS of new unreleased photos and more importantly, 2 NEW bonus tracks. One is "Rat Race" and the other is an ULTRA RARE live acoustic performance of "Power of Love". The "Power of Love-acoustic" track may actually not stay on there long so the ones who order fast will get it.
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
BLOODGOOD bassist releases solo album:
Courtesy of www.blabbermouth.net:
Press Release / BLOODGOOD bassist Michael Bloodgood has just released his new solo worship album, The Cross Changes Everything, via TAG Artists Group. Steve Smith (EAGLES, HEART, VAN HALEN) mixed the project and Quinton Gibson (SONICFLOOD, PETRA, MICHAEL TATE) mastered the album in Franklin, TN. The album, which was released under the MICHAEL BLOODGOOD & FRIENDS banner, contains the following tracks:
1. “Oh Happy Day”
2. “Hosanna In the Highest”
3. “God You’re So Good”
4. “Break Our Hearts”
5. “We Are One”
6. “Glory, Glory Hallelujah”
7. “The Cross Changes Everything”
8. “For the Cross”
9. “I'll Fly Away”
10. “Soon & Very Soon”
11. “Strong Tower”
12. “Lord I Lift Your Name On High”
13. “I'll Find My Way”
14. “Blessed Be The Lord”
15. “The Cross Changes Everything” (bonus track with Les Carlsen on lead vocals)
Mirror Of Souls update from THEOCRACY:
Details provided by founding member and vocalist Matt Smith:
“Sorry for the long time between updates, but there hasn’t been anything to update. We decided to give Solid State (the label that wanted to put the record out) until the end of January to get something going, or we were going to have to look elsewhere. We’ve all been waiting way too long already. They understood and said that the most recent band they signed took over a year for the deal to be finalized and put into motion, so they admitted that it’s probably for the best. Basically, the guy there who initially contacted us is the one guy who’s into melodic Metal (the label is traditionally known for hardcore bands, and we would have been their first in this style), so he had an uphill battle ahead of him anyway.
“So where does that leave us? That’s what we’re trying to decide. There are small labels interested, but I’m not sure how much they could really do for us, especially with the abysmal state of the industry in this day and age. We’re considering putting it out on our own as well, which makes more and more sense as things get worse and worse in the music business, but of course that takes a chunk of money and careful planning, to say the least. So we’re discussing our options. I’m really sorry about all this, but it’s completely been beyond our control up to this point.
“We have a very promising plan for artwork and layout for the album, so if that works out, you’ll definitely get top-notch artwork and packaging when you finally get it in your hands. That’s important to me, so I’m excited about that.”
THIEVES & LIARS release debut concept album, When Dreams Become Reality:
Press Release / Rock and roll is not dead! This statement resonates on every track of When Dreams Become Reality, the Facedown Records debut album from THIEVES & LAIRS. The San Diego-based power trio have spent the last several years constructing a concept record that will saturate your senses and take you on an epic journey of dreams and betrayal, loss and hope. The Zeppelin-meets-Floyd production came through a painstaking transfer process. Using recording techniques from the late 60's and early 70's, the band tracked most of the record live, giving the songs a very natural and warm sound.
Kyle Rosa's thundering yet graceful drumming provided the necessary foundation for bassist Joey Bradford, whose playing solidifies the rhythm section with tasteful lines of expression. The aggressive and soulful guitar of Corey Edelmann completes the massive sound of this three-piece. Bradford's energetic and passionate vocals flow seamlessly between songs, showcasing his ability to sound natural whether screaming on "Betrayed by Blood" or pouring his heart out on "Alone". The attention to detail and thought put into every song is evident in the production, which included organ, a boys choir, and strings. The violinist's Stradivarius will move you on the ballad "Forgotten", while the harmonizing boys' chorus will haunt you on "The Author of Dreams".
Lyrically, When Dreams Become Reality is a conceptual work that chronologically traces the life of the Old Testament figure Joseph. What proves significant is that THIEVES & LIARS do not give us a detailed biographical sketch of Joseph but rather convey his experiences - and the grief and hardships that went along with it - by putting themselves in his shoes from a first person standpoint. The end result is an overall theme of how faith and hope can prove significant in helping us get through the most difficult and trying times in life.
This 71 minute masterpiece is sure to instill hope in today's rock and roll scene; there is a revival coming, and the preachers are THIEVES & LIARS.
When Dreams Become Reality track listing:
1. “The Dream”
2. “Betrayed By Blood”
3. “Road To Nowhere”
4. “Slavin’ Away”
8. “When Dreams Become Reality”
9. “Good Times”
10. “Seven Long Years”
12. “The Author Of Dreams”
Facedown Records online: http://facedownrecords.com
ACTION - Action
Action, as one would expect, delivers a sound heavily rooted in the eighties. Drawing upon the influences of melodic rock, AOR and melodic hard rock, Action is certain to appeal to fans of Journey, Foreigner, Survivor, Boston, AdrianGale, Line Of Fire and a host of others of similar style. On the Christian side of the fence, I can see Action also gaining the interest of those into Shout, Guardian, Novella, Stryper, Mad Max and perhaps even Petra as well. Read Full Review >>
DELIVERANCE - River Disturbance (Collector’s Edition)
River Disturbance, on the other hand, finds Jimmy P. Brown and company heading in polished and subdued hard rock territory but still delivering an ample amount of guitar driven momentum in the process. This is best exhibited on classy mid-tempo hard rockers “Belltown”, “Breathing Still” and the albums reflective title track. Read Full Review >>
KERRY LIVGREN - Collector’s Sedition (Director’s Cut)
Collector’s Sedition (Director’s Cut), the latest solo release from guitarist/keyboardist Kerry Livgren, had its beginnings in the material Livgren put together for Kansas’ 2000 reunion album Somewhere To Elsewhere. Livgren was in a particularly prolific songwriting period at the time when, in a conversation with Kansas drummer Phil Ehart, he mentioned that the new songs he was working on had a Kansas-like feel to them. Read Full Review >>
LORDCHAIN - Finding Balance
Lordchain can best be described as straightforward hard rock and metal with occasional groove and modern undertones. What stands out most about the group is its melodic based songwriting, a penchant it best puts on display throughout Finding Balance. Read Full Review >>
RESURECTION BAND - Rainbow’s End
Resurrection Band came out of the Chicago, Illinois based Jesus People USA community in 1978 with the blues based hard rock its full length debut Awaiting Your Reply. Returning a year later with a more guitar driven follow up effort in Rainbow’s End, Resurrection Band still allows for the acoustic guitar to play a role in its music (check out “Concert For A Queen” and “Every Time It Rains”) while maintaining the blues based elements to its sound as well (“Paint A Picture” comes to mind). Read Full Review >>
ROSANNA’S RAIDERS - Fire From Heaven
The Christian metal label Pure Metal Records signed its share of quality talent during the decade of the eighties, releasing albums by such noteworthy artists as Bride, Saint, Messiah Prophet and Whitecross. Several lesser known – though no less able – groups were part of the label as well: Scarlet Red, Eternal Ryte and Rosanna’s Raiders. Rosanna’s Raiders was a group of particularly merit. Read Full Review >>
TITANIC - Wreckage (The Best Of & The Rest Of)
Now, one of the problems I have with most compilation albums is that they are almost always flawed. What I mean by that is rarely, if ever, have I been completely satisfied with the song selection process of any compilation I have obtained: either a critical track or two ends up missing or several will be included that, in my opinion, should have been left off. With that in mind, how does Wreckage (The Best Of & The Rest Of) measure up? Read Full Review >>
WHITECROSS - Nineteen Eighty Seven
A reunion show at Cornerstone 2002 and several additional live dates, however, helped put in place the foundation for the most recent venture from Carroll and Wenzel: and that is the re-recording Whitecross’ self-titled debut from scratch. The two decided to undertake the project due to not only the fact a high demand still exists for the album, but, similar to Saint’s reason for re-recording its 1984 debut EP Warriors Of The Son, to take advantage of advances in studio technology not available twenty years ago. Read Full Review >>
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
MAIN LINE RIDERS seeking second guitarist:
As announced by guitarist Cliffy Huntington:
“MAIN LINE RIDERS second guitar player position is open, so if you're a real rock 'n' roller who wants to join the band then get up with me. The band's bassist is a great guitar player, so if you're a great rock 'n' roll bassist then get up with me, cuz he can switch over to guitar.
“I'd prefer someone who is 25 to late 30's, but if you're younger than that by a few years, but are mature beyond your years then you'll probably be just fine. You MUST be a follower of Christ who has a genuine desire to travel around the country and the world to spread the Gospel.
“We have a record deal with Retroactive Records- our album is just about to be released (we have copies now and it's available in a few places online, but it'll have a full store release by mid January).
“You must be willing to relocate to the general Houston, Texas area pretty much right away. However, the full time touring life begins in June of this year. Where you keep your belongings once we start touring will be totally up to you. You'll need to figure out your own job and living situation once you get here. You'll be able to crash with one of the band members for a few days, but after that you'll need to have your own situation figured out.
“We'd prefer someone who has a real love for the late 80's sunset strip sounds of bands like GUNS N' ROSES, LA GUNS, FASTER PUSSYCAT and JUNKYARD as well as bands like AC/DC, HANOI ROCKS and CINDERELLA. We also dig KISS and MOTORHEAD.
“It is essential that you be someone who has no hang-ups about playing in the Christian scene or in the secular scene or in no scene at all. We play anywhere, anytime for anyone. If you only want to play for the "cool kids" then this ain't your gig.
“Contact me pronto if you think this is for you.”
MAIN LINE RIDERS online: www.facebook.com/pages/Main-Line-Riders
New Pastor Brad instrumental hard rock project, Shredded Sweet:
Shredded Sweet, the third instrumental metal solo release from Pastor Brad, should hit the shelves in early 2008. The album will feature guest appearances from Jim Griffin, Sonny Lombardozzi, David Jacobs, Matt Eltringham, Art Kalenda, Joe Nardulli and Andy England.
Shredded Sweet track listing (with guest appearances):
1. “Shredded Sweet” (All PB)
2. “Sacred Aggression” (PB, Jim Griffin on bass)
3. “Bed Of Roses” (All PB)
4. “Chunky Monkey” (All PB)
5. “Rolling Thunder” (PB and Sonny Lombardozzi)
6. “Sinai Daydreams” (PB and David Jacob)
7. “Child-like Sweetness” (All PB)
8. “Fire And Ice” (PB and Matt Eltringham)
9. “Memory Lane” (All PB)
10. “Wolfgang's Breath” (PB and Jim Griffin)
11. “Dr. Philgood” (PB and Sonny Lombardozzi)
12. “Soul Life” (PB and Art Kalenda)
13. “Go Irish!” (PB and Joe Nardulli)
14. “Flooded” (PB and Andy England)
The artist is releasing Shredded Sweet in follow up to his previous two instrumental ‘shred’ albums, Reshredded (2006) and Shred (2005).
* MEHIDA at work on second album: “The recording of the second MEHIDA album is going on full steam and all the people who liked the approach of the first one can expect the follow up album to be even stronger and more powerful. We'll be working with the album during the spring of 2008, and it should be out in next year or so (still depending on schedules and such).”
* KEN TAMPLIN (SHOUT & MAGDALLAN) plans to put out in the spring of 2008 a covers album entitled Cover To Cover.
METAL & HARD ROCK NEWS
Early 2008 update from BRIDE:
The Louisville, Kentucky based group has started work on its next album:
“In the next coming months things here are going to be crazy. The process of writing music for us is an adventure and filled with unimaginable excitement. Troy and I have decided to take the band into a direction that we should have gone a long time ago. When we were growing up there were so many great and talented bands writing memorable, age lasting songs. Bands such as LED ZEPPELIN, AEROSMITH, KANSAS, BLUE OYSTER CULT, BLACK SABBATH, EAGLES, DEEP PURPLE, LYNYRD SKYNRYD, PINK FLOYD, ROLLING STONES, SLADE, ZZ TOP and a big favorite of the band The CULT, which came a long a little later.
“With that said what we hope to do is combine many of the same vibes that we grew up on and produce an intense raw CD which showcases what we do best. And what we do best is play live. Over the years so many people have told us after seeing us in concert that the concerts were so much better than the records we were producing. Not to discredit any of our past producers but it is very hard for (a band on our level) to capture that energy of a live show in the studio. There are too many factors involved.
“But we have learned a few studio tricks over the years and believe we can give our audience the raw essence and the soul of BRIDE.
“The serious writing has already begun. Dale and Troy (Thompson) have been collaborating and will soon bring in Michael Loy on drums and so far they are still searching for the right bassist.
“A plan for a ‘fan financed CD’ is being drafted and once this is complete you will be given the instructions on how to participate inn this venture. As for now, keep BRIDE and their families in your prayers and expect great things (maybe even a tour) for 2008.”
SCREAM IN EDEN signs with Z Records:
Press Release / Z Records would like to announce their latest signing, Chicago's SCREAM IN EDEN. The band is yet another fine example of excellent melodic hard rock that fans have grown to expect from Z Records. Discovered by Mark Alger (Z Records founder) a few months ago, SCREAM IN EDEN’s debut entitled Original Sin will be released on January 28, 2008 and is essential for fans of TESLA, DOKKEN and BABYLON AD. Featured around the fantastic vocals of Joe Dokken and the guitar work of WHITECROSS axeman Rex Carroll, SCREAM IN EDEN are set to make 2008 their year.
SCREAM IN EDEN got its start in 1991 when it placed the track “Till The End” on the Star Song compilation Brave New World. After shortening its name to Eden, the group independently released its full-length debut, Fan The Flame, in the mid-nineties but a lack of promotion prevented the album from receiving the acclaim and notoriety it deserved. That all changed in 2003, however, when Fan The Flame was digitally re-mastered and re-issued by Retroactive Records with new cover artwork. Early 2008 find the band returning to its original SCREAM IN EDEN moniker for the Z Rock re-issue with new cover artwork. Fast forward to early 2008 and the band has returned to its original SCREAM IN EDEN moniker for the Z Rock re-issue under the new title Original Sin and updated cover artwork.
Original Sin track listing:
1. "Need Somebody"
2. "Show Me"
3. "Morning Star"
4. "Fan The Flame"
5. "Tomorrow’s Yesterday"
6. "Forgotten Child"
7. "Give Me A Reason"
8. “It’s A Shame"
9. "Back To The Garden"
10. "Love Rolls On"
Z Rock Records online: www.z-records.com
TILES releases fifth album, Fly Paper:
Press Release / Fly Paper, the fifth album from the Detrio, Michigan progressive rock group TILES, will be released January 29th on Inside Out/SPV and was produced by Terry Brown, who is noted for his multi-platinum success with RUSH, CUTTING CREW and FATES WARNING. TILES’ previous four releases: Tiles, Fence The Clear, Presents Of Mind, and Window Dressing are available as part of Inside Out Music’s Special Edition series. Each CD features a variety of previously unreleased songs, demos, and bootleg video; expanded packaging, photos, and liner notes; newly mastered audio from the original tapes; and bonus live material. It was 1999’s Presents of Mind that propelled TILES into the mainstream progressive rock scene garnering glowing endorsements from JETHRO TULL's Ian Anderson and DREAM THEATER's Mike Portnoy – culminating in a three week European tour as special guests for DREAM THEATER.”
The following question was presented to TILES guitarist Chris Herin in a 2004 interview with HM Magazine:
What are your thoughts on being known as believers in the world of art? How do you see your faith being fused with your art?
“Well, when you take a look at world history it's obvious how much Christianity has inspired art. So the two have never been mutually exclusive. It's not until the 20th Century that art seemed to gravitate more toward a secular endeavor - maybe as the separation of church and state became increasingly micro-managed. TILES doesn't fit solidly in the Christian rock format since we're not a "praise" band, per se. But my lyrics provide the point of intersection as they tend to reflect biblical principles and philosophy.”
Fly Paper track listing:
1. “Hide In My Shadow”
2. “Sacred & Mundane”
3. “Back & Forth”
6. “Dragons, Dreams & Daring Deeds”
7. “Crowded Emptiness”
8. “Hide & Seek”
9. “Passing Notes”
* Latest from bassist Michael Bloodgood regarding upcoming worship CD, The Cross Changes Everything: “I wanted to let you know that The Cross Changes Everything (Michael Bloodgood & Friends) just wrapped up tonight. Steve Smith (EAGLES, HEART, VAN HALAN, etc.) was retained to mix the project while Craig and I inundated him with our own observations. Quinton Gibson (SONICFLOOD, PETRA, MICHAEL TATE) will be mastering the album in Franklin, TN. I am very excited about crossing the finishing line after four years. The project will include 14 tracks not including a bonus track.”
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