After 2008’s self explanatory “Let The Metal Do The Talking”, Swedish traditional metal exponents OVERDRIVE deliver the most pulsating album of their career with the pedal to the metal bombast of “Angelmaker”. This new album sees Overdrive pummel the listener with their heaviest release yet. Home to 12 tracks all of which will make any self respecting metal fan throw the “horns” in appreciation.
With a history dating back over 20 years the line up has been consistent since their initial formation in 1980, with the exception of vocalist Per “PerilOz” Karlsson who came onboard for the bands reformation in 2003. This lengthy combined experience between the band members makes Overdrive run like a well oiled machine, locked in, loaded and ready to unleash its metallic grit to all generations of metal fans.
Lyrically the album deals with a variety of topics, from catholic priests, vampires and Indians to psychopaths and warnings of our world going down the drain. While the title track tells the gruesome story of the Swedish angelmakers. A group of women who “took care” of illegitimate children through drowning, suffocation or starvation, being paid for their services. The last angelmaker was convicted in the 1920’s, yet still the story is one that shocks.
The work on “Angelmaker” started in late 2008. Janne Stark (Locomotive Breath / Constancia) started writing a couple of tracks, “Thriller” and” Angelmaker”, which set the style and approach. Then Kjelle Jacobsson, Janne, Per Karlsson and Kenth Ericsson started writing, each on their own. Demos were made and finally the band sat down together in February 2010 to select from the 25+ songs that had been written. 18 songs were selected. Rehearsals began and in May recordings started. With no hurry and the aim of simply making this the best Overdrive album ever. The drums were recorded by Johan Blomström at Studio Sound Palace, while the guitars, bass and vocals were recorded at various studios. The mixing, by Pelle Saether (Grand Design/Zello/Zeelion) at Studio Underground in Västerås started in July and in August the album was finished. Next the band drafted 10 people to help evaluate and select the final track listing for the album which proved to be an eye-opening experience for the band. In November 2010 the album was mastered and finished and an extension of the bands deal with Lion Music was signed.
Given their pedigree and reputation it’s no surprise to hear Overdrive enter the third decade of their career hitting new heights with “Angelmaker”; a slice of traditional metal as good as you will hear in 2011.
Danish progressive metallers Infinity Overture return with their second album “The Infinite Overture pt.1”. Led by the superb guitar and compositional skills of Neils Vejlyt, the band have taken a step away from the symphonic metal slant of their debut to mark the start of altogether darker and more distinctive journey with enhanced progressive elements blended with gothic textures.
The listener will also notice the new album being more guitar driven due to the reduction of symphonic elements. The new material also showcases the virtuoso side of the band making great use of dynamically rich music wrapped around irresistible vocal melodies. Vejlyt must be applauded for managing to combine all these elements whilst still ensuring the song remains the main priority and these are 9 compelling compositions.
As a result of the slight change of musical direction Vejlyt saw fit to change the band line-up to best bring out the new music and also ensure the calibre of musicianship was high enough to perform the new material live.
New female vocalist Kimmie Tenna Nielsen is the most major change, with her moving and powerful voice driving on the new compositions, her performance is set to make her an upcoming talent in the metal world. Bassist Bernardo Fesch has brought awesome bass groves to the compositions whilst drummer Jakob Vand has adds his grand technical skills and ideas to the band making for a very exciting rhythm section.
Niels Vejlyt also secured the services of two of his favourite vocalists to perform some guest spots on the new release – namely Fabio Lione (Rhapsody Of Fire) and Amanda Somerville (Epica, Kamelot etc). Niels describes this as, “An honour to have such greats on the songs”.
In addition to these two household names are a number of other guest backing vocalists all adding further depth to the compositions.
Production guru Sascha Paeth (Edguy, Rhapsody of Fire, Kamelot) once again oversaw the mix and master with the outcome being another full and rich sounding release from Infinity Overture.
EARACHE RECORDS and SkullsNBones.com are saluting the end of a very metal year with a very metal contest. This is a contest so metal that it can’t even be contained to 1 week — it’s going on for 8! Every Friday for the next eight weeks, SkullsNBones will pick one winner to receive this year’s critically acclaimed AT THE GATES 3 DVD set, THE FLAMES OF THE END along with one of EARACHE‘s other great 2010 releases like WORMROT‘s ABUSE, OCEANO‘s CONTAGION, BONDED BY BLOOD‘s EXILED TO EARTH and more!
-Your post must be at least two sentences to count, so make it good!
-You must live in the continental United States
-You must be over 18
-You may enter as many times as you want, but don’t be annoying!
-If you don’t want to comment your entry here, you may email them at contests(at)skullsnbones.com
-Winners will be announced every Friday for the next eight weeks beginning on Dec. 17th
Finnish melodic metallers SONATA ARCTICA have uploaded the fifth video installment of a series featuring behind-the-scenes footage from their recent South American tour. Watch the video clip here or below:
SONATA ARCTICA’s February 27, 2011 concert in Milan, Italy will be filmed for the band’s second live DVD, to be released in late 2011. According to a recent statement, “[SONATA ARCTICA] will perform a pretty unique show of at least 120 minutes. Next to songs of their latest albums, The Days Of Grays and Unia, they also will perform some of the older songs from previous albums plus some very rare songs they didn’t play live during the last years. For sure this will be an unforgettable event and a journey from the beginning of their career as one of the most popular Finnish metal bands until now — you definitely shouldn’t miss it.
“The DVD will be released through Nuclear Blast Records and Marquee Inc. in Japan and will, next to the show in Milan, contain another show, recorded 2009 during the SONATA ARCTICA Open Air Festival in their hometown Kemi, Finland. And of course, there will be massive bonus material such as the ‘making-of,’ interviews, and plenty of video footage the band recorded the last few years during their career on tour.”
The Days Of Grays, SONATA ARCTICA’s latest album, debuted on the Billboard Top New Artist “Heatseekers” chart at #19 the week following its release. The album track “Flag In The Ground” can be purchased for Playstation 3 & XBOX 360 gaming systemsvia the RockBand music library by clicking here.
View SONATA ARCTICA’s video for “Flag In The Ground” here.
ImageFM.ca announced their 2010 annual awards winners! CONFLICTED walk away with the following three awards:
CONFLICTED’s Song Victor Victoria – WINS Best Progressive Metal Single of the Year
CONFLICTED’s Lead Vocalist Jason Orton – WINS Best Male Vocalist of the Year
CONFLICTED’s Guitarist Mark Owen – WINS Best Guitarist of the Year
ImageFM.ca 2010 Awards will be presented during an online party on January 8, 2011 starting at 7:30 p.m.
CONFLICTED were also named “Best Metal Band” at the 2010 The Toronto Independent Music Awards (TIMAs).
CONFLICTED have risen to become one of the most revered and “must see” live acts in their region, having headlined many of their own shows, plus having opened for international touring artists, all to stellar audience reception. The responses from music insiders have been emphatically and overwhelmingly positive.
Fronted by the gifted and talented Jason Orton — a professionally trained, 4-octave range vocalist — he brings what one would consider a Halford-esque tonality, intensity, and vibrancy to CONFLICTED, with vocal and stage performances that have been widely critically acclaimed.
Orton, in the opinion of many, is poised to become the next metallic singing superstar hailing from Toronto to achieve world recognition, in league with Sebastian Bach (Skid Row) and James LaBrie (Dream Theatre), the latter of which Orton is often favourably compared to.
CONFLICTED’s epically orchestrated and powerful, theatre/arena rock — one that expertly blends modern and classic elements to create a musicality distinctively their own — is skillfully and dynamically delivered by ROBERT MARK OWEN (guitar), JOHN KOLODZIEJ (bass), COREY STOLL (drums), and RON DE COSTE (keys), all of whom themselves are skilled virtuosos with years of experience which resonates both live and in the studio.
CONFLICTED are currently playing live shows in support the forthcoming release entitled “Never Be Tamed”.
Eternal Terror’s Roy Kristensen met up with Ivar Bjørnson in Enslaved’s rehearsal room during 2010’s Hole In The Sky festival, since the new album had just been made. They talked about “Axioma Ethica Odhinn “, creating the music, touring with Dimmu Borgir, Hole In The Sky, and Cato Bækkevold’s way of torturing the rest of the band.
Live material is filmed in Drammen (Union Scene) 01.10.10. The photos from Eternal Terror by Unn Marit Forrestad & Lise Mette Eidet in September 2010. Produced by Imhotep Productions.
Can Iced Earth fans handle nearly six hours of their favorite metal band?
They’ll soon find out.
An intense two-minute trailer from the long-awaited live DVD extravaganza Festivals of the Wicked has just been posted to the Iced Earth web site (http://www.icedearth.com).
The DVD cover art – featuring Iced Earth “mascot” Set Abominae emerging from the fires of Hell, riffing on a Les Paul – has also been revealed.
Festivals of the Wicked boasts nearly six hours of Iced Earth – three full headliner shows (over 40 live tracks!), a photo gallery shot by famed rock photographer Ross Halfin, plus a 90-minute documentary. It will be released early in 2011.
“The last part of the DVD to be completed is the documentary,” said Iced Earth main man Jon Schaffer. “Thousands of hours were shot and edited down to 90 minutes. It’s very close to done. I have to say the footage of the band on stage is mind blowing. Those who have already seen us will love it. Those who haven’t yet seen Iced Earth will be amazed by what this band can do on stage.”
Drummer Brent Smedley concurs: “The three festivals featured on the DVD were all extremely remarkable and each one memorable in its own way,” he said. “All three were amazing nights where the Metal and the Magic were fully flowing. I think the release of this DVD truly proves my mantra and favorite saying: METAL LIVES!”
Indeed it does.
Festivals of the Wicked shows Iced Earth in its favorite element – facing tens of thousands of screaming fans – and playing songs that demonstrate why Iced Earth fans are some of the most loyal in metal.
The three soon-to-be-released festivals are:
Wacken Open Air (2007) with Tim Owens on lead vocals. The blistering 13-song set begins with a jaw-dropping rendition of “Burning Times” and closes with the band’s signature track, “Iced Earth.”
Rock Hard Festival (2008) with Matt Barlow on lead vocals. This festival, the first to feature Matt’s return, storms through 15 songs, with “Dark Saga” leading the charge.
Metal Camp (2008) with Matt Barlow on lead vocals. A not-to-be-missed 16-song face melter of a concert that proves why some say Iced Earth is one of the top live bands in the world.
“I’m very proud of this DVD, and I’m grateful to fans for their patience,” said Schaffer. “Getting this ready for release has been an enormous job, but a true labor of love. It will be worth the wait. I promise.”
Schaffer formed Iced Earth in Tampa, Florida, in 1984. Since then, he has released 10 studio albums, one live album, two compilations, and three boxed sets. With worldwide sales in the millions, Iced Earth has earned a seat in the pantheon of America’s most successful heavy-metal bands.
Iced Earth was recently confirmed to appear at Graspop Metal Meeting in Dessel, Belgium, on June 24th, 2011. Additional festival dates will be announced soon on the band’s official web site, Facebook, and MySpace.
With two exciting announcements already made, Sonisphere Knebworth 2011 – which takes place July 8th – 10th – can now reveal the remaining headliner for next summer’s festival, who will appear alongside Saturday night headliner BIFFY CLYRO and Sunday Festival closer SLIPKNOT.
Sonisphere will be bringing together METALLICA, SLAYER, MEGADETH and ANTHRAX in the UK for the first time in history to headline the Friday night.
Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich explains: “As soon as the Big 4 gigs started rolling across Sonisphere Festivals in Eastern Europe last summer, we all felt we were part of something special. The vibe within the bands was more than anyone had anticipated and the vibe with the fans was so next level, it completely blew our minds . . . there was no way this should not happen again!!! So I am beyond psyched that the first Big 4 show in Western Europe will take place on the hallowed grounds of Knebworth, where so many unique and special gigs have happened over the years.”
Last summer saw the live debut of The Big 4 – as this collective of thrash legends are commonly known – marking what was possibly the most significant event in the history of metal. Fans all over Europe could barely contain their excitement, as over 500,000 metalheads bore witness to the show they thought they’d never see.
The Big 4 fever did not stop at Europe, as fans the world over eagerly anticipated the possibility of seeing the historical show for themselves in their own countries. Such was the demand that a live cinecast of the Bulgarian show saw over 130,000 people turn out to local cinemas, with reports of mosh pits breaking out in movie theatres across the globe. The recently released DVD of the event, which features all four bands collaborating on a cover of Diamond Head’s “Am I Evil” as well as their individual sets, has only added fuel to the Big 4 fire, with a frenzied demand for more performances in the countries not fortunate enough to play host last summer.
Now, Sonisphere brings the titanic combo of Metallica, Slayer, Megadeth and Anthrax to the UK for the very first time, at this exclusive performance at Knebworth.
The legends themselves declare their delight at taking the greatest metal show on earth back out on the road:
“There is simply no better venue for a European round two of the Big 4!!”, Metallica’s Lars Ulrich begins. “Put your dancing shoes on, this is gonna be fun!”
“Always excited to do Big 4 shows”, says SLAYER’s Kerry King. “Now England is in line to be devastated by this heavy metal powerhouse! Can’t Fucking wait!!!”
Megadeth mainman Dave Mustaine states; “The Big Four Concerts are the most important, most exciting event to happen in the history of live concerts in our genre, and perhaps the entire music industry. I am glad to be a part of this enormous celebration of thrash, speed, and good ole heavy metal!”
“OH YEAH!!!” proclaims Anthrax drummer Charlie Benante. “Here we come England! The Big 4 BABY! Can’t wait to Get Metal Thrashing Mad for you thrashers!”
Anthrax bandmate, guitarist Scott Ian concurs, “Merry early Xmas present for us… more Big 4 shows!!! The shows we did together with our brothers in Metallica, Slayer and Megadeth were not only the high point of 2010, but also some of the best shows Anthrax have ever played. Getting to share this with our friends in the UK will be amazing.”
Given that 2010’s event had sold out before IRON MAIDEN took to the stage, and the hugely exciting headliners set for next year, Sonisphere can not guarantee that day tickets will be available for 2011, so fans are advised to get their tickets early to ensure they don’t miss out on what is already shaping up to be Sonisphere’s most exciting year yet.
Tickets for Sonisphere Knebworth 2011 are now on sale. Beat the VAT increase – and get your application in to become a Sonisphere Tourist with your free ticket for Poland and Czech Republic or Austria (subject to availability) – by snapping your ticket up quickly.
Sonisphere Knebworth takes place July 8th – 10th, 2011 at Knebworth House. For tickets and more info go to this location.
MR. BIG is back to announce their highly anticipated new studio album entitled « What If… » on February 8, 2011 on Frontiers Records.
«What If… » is MR. BIG’s first all original album since the reunion of the four original members, Eric Martin, Paul Gilbert, Billy Sheehan and Pat Torpey back in early 2009. Sixteen years after the release of « Hey Man », the new recording is set to bring back MR. BIG on the height of the current Hard Rock scene.
Guitarist Paul Gilbert said: “This is the first MR. BIG album I have been a part of, since fourteen years and it was done in a snap. It was fun and we had really a good time in making this one”. Continues Billy Sheehan “It’s so great to be back with Paul, Eric and Pat too. We wrote this record like we did in the old days for the first 2 records. Jamming together in the same room to write songs”. Pat Torpey adds ““Some of the recording process is different now from what we were used to in the old times. But I think this record really managed to capture the performances of the band, not of the individual musicians”.
Eric Martin concludes: “I like to compare this to the first album, when we just got to know each other in a reharsal studio and cut it in 8 or 9 days. This is like chapter 2. We had so many years, so many records and so many things behind us. Now this feels like a beautiful brand new chapter starting for all of us”.
« What If… » was produced by Kevin Shirley (Aerosmith, Rush, Iron Maiden) and the release will be followed by a World Tour which will kick off in South America in March and will hit Europe in early summer.
Formed in 1988, Mr. Big forged its place in hard rock history by combining trademark “shredding” musicianship with awesome vocal harmonies. The original line-up – vocalist Eric Martin, guitarist Paul Gilbert, bassist Billy Sheehan, and drummer Pat Torpey. Mr. Big produced numerous hit songs that ranged across a wide array of rock genres – be it ballads, heavy metal, or blues rock.
Their hits included “To Be With You” (Billboard Hot 100 number one single in 15 countries for weeks, in 1991, propelling the band the band to huge international success and record sales in the multi-millions), “Wild World”, Green-Tinted sixties Mind”, “Just Take My Heart”, and a host of heavy metal songs that were played mostly during their live performances: “Daddy, Brother, Lover, Little Boy”, “Addicted to that Rush”, “Colorado Bulldog”, and “Take Cover”.
“What If…” will be released in a special edition CD + DVD in digipak, regular CD, vinyl and digital download and in a limited edition luxury box including the CD, DVD, LP and exclusive memorabilia.
“What If…” tracklisting includes: Undertow; American Beauty; Stranger In My Life; Nobody Takes the Blame; Still Ain’t Enough for Me; Once Upon a Time; As Far As I Can See; All The Way Up; I Won’t Get In My Way; Around The World; I Get The Feeling; Unforgiven (exclusive bonus track for Europe / North America – not on vinyl edition).
The DVD will include the videoclips of “Undertow” and “All the Way Up” plus a documentary “Making of” the album including interviews and exclusive behind the scenes features of the four members.
In January 2011, forty metal bands and 2,000 heavy metal fans will take over the luxury cruise ship “Majesty of the Seas” and head for Cozumel, México for a 5-day/4-night trip of a lifetime. The following eleven Nuclear Blast artists will be on-board:
With a jam-packed schedule of on-board live performances on several indoor & outdoor stages, open mic nights, bars that never close, and the opportunity to mingle side-by-side with the artists in this fan-friendly scenario, this experience has no comparison. Here, everyone will feel like they have a backstage pass. Departure is in 44 days!
To view the complete list of confirmed artists, click here.
Visit the official website for the 70,000 Tons of Metal cruise here.
Visit the 70000 Tons of Metal YouTube Channel here.
Finnish folk metal pioneers KORPIKLAANI will release their new album, Ukon Wacka, in Europe on February 4, 2011 and in North America on February 15, 2011 via Nuclear Blast Records.
The track listing for the CD is as follows:
01. Louhen Yhdeksäs Poika
02. Päät Pois Tai Hirteen
03. Tuoppi Oltta
06. Ukon Wacka
07. Korvesta Liha
08. Koivu Ja Tähti
Check out the cover artwork below.
According to the band, “Ukon Wacka, or Ukon Vakat, is a pagan sacrificial feast from ancient times, on which a special made beer richly flowed. As can be expected from the title, this album has an ancient and very folky feel and is totally in Finnish. To make the lyrics understandable for non-Finnish people, we will add an English description/translation in the booklet as usual. The album consists of 10 songs, among which you will find a song name ‘Tequila’, which is especially written for (and inspired by) our South American fans, with whom we celebrated such hard times, and who welcomed us so warmly, when we were touring in South America. Another surprise is the title song, ‘Ukon Wacka’, in which a special guest features: the famous Finnish singer Tuomari Nurmio! Last but not least features a tribute song (‘Päät Pois Tai Hirteen’) to the Finnish rock band PEER GÜNT, a great and underestimated band. We hope and expect that this album will give you as much joy as we had making it; a big folky feast for all!”
Karkelo (English translation: “Pleasure” or “Party”), the sixth album from KORPIKLAANI, was released on June 26, 2009 via Nuclear Blast Records. The CD was recorded at Petrax studio in Hollola, Finland.
KORPIKLAANI‘s previous CD, Korven Kuningas, came out on March 21, 2008. The CD entered the album chart in the band’s home country at position No. 16.
Every year the Holiday gods try to throw us the same old boring and tired music. KRASHKARMA from Los Angeles needs the blood of the innocent and punishing power chords under their black, upside down Xmas tree!
Therefore the band wants to put their latest, most brutal Holiday creation in your ear stockings! So you better watch out and you better not cry because Santa is coming to shove some “Angels & Chainsaws” up your ass!
We trust that sounds a lot better to your ears, whatever you may think about Christmas songs. Merry Krash Kristmas and happy Holidays from the band!
OSLO, Norway – Mortiis will return to the touring circuit this winter with a two-month, full European tour supporting evil-electro outfit Combichrist.
“In some fundamental ways, Combichrist and Mortiis are very different, but in other fundamental ways, we are very much the Mortiis bandsame,” expl ained vocalist and namesake Mortiis. “At the end of the day, both bands have this ‘f-you’ attitude. It’s expressed somewhat differently musically, but energy and attitude-wise we’re carrying the same torch, so to speak. I think fans of both bands will pick up on that.”
Mortiis took a break from touring while preparing their latest releases, the soon-to-emerge next album, “the Great Deceiver” and “Perfectly Defect,” a totally free digital download. Unveiled October 10, “Perfectly Defect” is full-length, downloadaPD coverble album available at www.mortiis.com. “Perfectly Defect” is the quintessential prelude to the world of “The Great Deceiver” – while the latter is heavier and darker, the former is varied, experimental, and largely instrumental. The bottom line is that “Perfectly Defect” leads into “The Great Deceiver” acting as a crucial stage in the evolution of Mortiis’ music.
The group is anxious to get back on stage and is ready to unleash months of pent-up aggression during their live show. Fans can expect to hear tracks from “Perfectly Defect” and “The Great Deceiver,” as well as some older songs with a different twist.
“We’ve seriously pimped up a selection of older songs that we’ll be performing,” Mortiis said. “So, across the board, it will be a new, and for lack of a better expression, very ‘pimped up’ bunch of songs!”
A tour with Combichrist was imminent. Aside from having a long acquaintance with Combichrist’s founder and Norwegian-native Andy LaPlegua, drummer Joe Letz is an extended member of the Mortiis family. After connecting with Letz during Mortiis’ US tour with the Genitorturers – Letz’s former band – the drummer got involved with Mortiis on some of the recording of “The Great Deceiver.”
“It was just a question of time until we’d go out on tour together again,” Mortiis said. “Joe is still a part of this band, the way we all see it. We always have a great time when we’re together and I think this is something everyone’s been wanting to happen for a while now. So when the opportunity came about, we pretty much did what had to be done to make it happen.”