Music

Albums From 2012 That Need To Be Heard

The Night Flight Orchestra
Internal Affairs

If you never experienced the Seventies, then this album from a super group of melodic death metal bands recaptures it all. From the “Immigrant Song/Achilles Last Stand” references in “Siberian Queen” to the “I Was Made For Loving You” references in “West Ruth Avenue” or the “Play That Funky Music/ Stevie Wonder’s Superstititious in “Internal Affairs”.

It captures it all and more.

Fen
Of Losing Interest

I didn’t know what to expect hearing this. It’s like Rush on Thrash Metal. Then its Rush on Hard Rock. Then its Rush meets Tool. Then it’s Rush on Groove Metal. Then it’s a cross between Rush and Alice In Chains and Pearl Jam. Being from Canada, the Rush influences are real strong.

Progressive music doesn’t have to be all time changes and technical playing ability. It can be Fen. Just doing something that blends so many different styles together and making it sound infectious.

Check out “Riddled”, it starts off with a thrash metal riff, then it goes into a verse that is Tool like merged with Kansas.

Adrenaline Mob
Omerta

It is balls to the wall metal classic in the style of Accept, Scorpions, Dio merged with the metal stylings of Disturbed and Godsmack. “Undaunted”, “All On The Line”, “Angel Sky”, “Indifferent” and “Hit The Wall” are worthy additions to any metal bands setlist.

The cover of Duran Duran’s “Come Undone” is also a fitting metal tribute to a pop number one hit.

So put aside all of your views on the members that make up the band and from what bands they come from and embrace a great balls to the wall metal project.

Digital Summer
Breaking Point

DIY band from Phonenix, Arizona, getting stronger with each release. “Breaking Point” was a Kickstarter funded project and it didn’t disappoint. The lead single “Forget You” has racked up 1,027,533 views on YouTube. They are great numbers for an independent band, that also manage themselves, record and release their own music and hold down day jobs.

If you like modern rock, then you will like this band.

Richie Sambora
Aftermath Of The Lowdown

The good old Richie Sambora released a great modern rock album that didn’t get the recognition it deserved because at that point in time he was still in Bon Jovi and Bon Jovi (the band) needed him to start the promotional interviews for the “What About Now” album.

Check out “Seven Years Gone”, “Nowadays”, “Every Road Leads Home To You”. Hell, the whole album is good. Give it your time.

Lizzard
Out Of Reach

This band is definitely under the radar for what they do. Think of Earshot meets Tool meets 10 Years meets modern rock. Vocalist, Mathieu Ricou has a voice that crosses between Chad Kroeger, Aaron Lews and Maynard James Keenan.

There is a feel of Progressive Metal, TOOL, Hard Rock, Trance & hypnotic music, DEFTONES, YES and PINK FLOYD. It’s a potent mix.

Vaudeville
Vendetta

Vaudeville is one band that deserves more recognition for what they do. They merge the styles of Muse and Radiohead with Hard Rock. It sounds beautiful and original.

Check out the song “Restless Souls”.

Will you stand up
And fight against their wrath
Or will you run
Until there’s nothing left

Hell Or Highwater
Begin Again

The new band from Atreyu drummer Brandon Saller. Hell or Highwater finds Saller stepping away from his drum kit and taking the mic to be the band’s lead vocalist. It’s hard rock people and it rocks real good and it doesn’t sound generic.

Burnside
Evolution

One of many great bands from Australia. It’s modern rock done really well. Check out “Remember When”, “Lost The Will”, “The Last Time” and “What You’ve Become”.

One Less Reason
A Blueprint For Writhing

This EP was my first introduction to One Less Reason. I knew nothing about them and when I heard “All Beauty Fades”, I was left speechless when the rest of the music and melody kicked in. And they are another DIY band.

It’s a six song EP and there is no filler. A very smart decision to release the best.

Corroded
State Of Disgrace

Corroded have a decent following in their own country of Sweden.

They are a skillful band that create groove based hard rock. Stand out songs are “Let them Hate As Long As They Fear”, “I Will Not”, and “Believe In Me”.

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Classic Songs to Be Discovered, Music

Shinedown, Trivium, Mutiny Within, Machine Head and Corroded – Classic Songs To Be Discovered

Driving into work today, I had the music on shuffle.  It is interesting to hear in which order songs come up.  In this case, the shuffle got it right, putting five metal/rock bands together, that have different styles, but when played one after each other, form a sequenced album.

BULLY – Shinedown
BLACK – Trivium
BECOME – Mutiny Within
BE STILL and KNOW – Machine Head
BELIEVE IN ME – Corroded

If these five songs where by one band and they were on one side of a LP, the album would be called a classic.  Back in the day to play these five songs, I would have had to change the LP five times.  Alternatively I could have copied them onto a cassette tape as a mix tape.  It was okay to copy songs onto cassettes back in the eighties, however it is not okay to copy songs on the internet today, or to burn a CD of your favourite songs. 

Seems I’ve crossed the line again
For being nothing more than who I am

Shinedown is a combination of the eighties and seventies, repackaged in the two thousands.  They have the seventies classic rock element, the eighties sleaze and the nineties move to modern alternative rock.  They can be soulful and heavy, bluesy and poppy.  They tick all the boxes and cover a lot of styles.  Bully is from their most recent album Amaryllis, the follow-up to the mega successful The Sound Of Madness.  How simple and yet effective is that lyric?  Getting punished for being who you are.  We have all suffered this fate in our lives.    

Even though the bands play different styles, for some reason, when the syncopated intro for Black starts right after Bully, it sounds like it could come from the same band.  Instead it came from Trivium, and it’s from the album In Waves released in 2011.  After the epic sounding Shogun album, the band moved more into a shorter format of song writing, much like how Metallica did the Black album, after the epic And Justice For All album.

You can say that in the eighties, Megadeth, Metallica, Slayer, Anthrax and Exodus were the big 5 in the thrash metal genre.  The nineties saw the rise of the Pantera juggernaut.   No one could come close to rivalling the power of Pantera.  The two thousand’s say Machine Head evolve into a thrash juggernaut, especially after The Blackening, along with bands like Slipknot, Trivium, Killswitch Engaged, Shadows Fall and Chimera. 

Black!
Downfall of decimation!
Black!
It tears apart the night!

The intro of Become from Mutiny Within kicks off, and it brings back memories of Megadeth’s Lucretia from the Rust In Peace album.  Mutiny Within, had a major label deal with Roadrunner.  The first album they released, was promoted as Killswitch Engage meets Dream Theater by Roadrunner.  Being a fan of both bands, I decided to purchase it.  I heard the Killswitch Engage similarities but couldn’t really get the Dream Theater vibe.  Anyway, due to low album sales, Roadrunner dropped the band. 

Seriously, who measures low album sales as gauges for success.  Obviously Roadrunner does, as well as the singer of Mutiny Within, who is involved in some stupid website called Embers, which is a voice against piracy and how piracy effects artists.  Here is a tip.  Piracy is here to stay.  Accept it, and start competing with it.  Piracy was alive and well, when Five Finger Death Punch released American Capitalist, and it didn’t stop it from moving 500,000 units.  

I can’t justify this life,
I have no reason to start again,
Can’t forget what I’ve become

I read a few interviews from the band on-line, and from what I gathered, they all believed that they made it once they signed to Roadrunner, and when the untold millions didn’t eventuate and they were on their backsides, they needed someone to blame.  That is when they should have gone to their fans.  Look at what Protest The Hero did with their Indiegogo funding.  Mutiny Within had fans, but failed to connect with them.  Regardless, Become is a tough song, check it out.  This band has a future, lets see if they can fulfill it by doing what the new paradigm requires, connecting with fans.  At the moment, they are still stuck in the old paradigm.     

The mighty Machine Head was up next.  What can I say, I have seen Machine Head live on three occasions.   I love this band.  They have survived so many trends in the music business and in the end have come out on top, by doing it their way.  How good is that 7/4 intro , that always seems to remind me of Iron Maiden’s Wasted Years.  How insane is that solo section and the super quick double bass drumming.  Unto The Locust was an album without any filler.  The songs were tight, trimmed and lean.

And the sun will rise
Dawn will break through the blackest night
Distant in its glow
This shall pass be still and know

Finally, Corroded.  From Sweden or Sveden, depending on how you want to say it.  Believe in Me is from their third album, the excellent State of Disgrace.  It’s groovy and it rocks.  It’s heavy and it boogies.  This is one band, that I am hoping can break out of Sweden.  They fill a void in the heavy rock scene.

 

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