Best of 2008 – Rick

January 4th, 2009
by EvilG

Top 20 2008

1. Warrel Dane ~ PRAISES TO THE WAR MACHINE

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Little did I know that Warrell Dane would create my number 1 release for 2008. Upon first listen I wasn’t overly impressed with PRAISES TO THE WAR MACHINE but it just seemed to grow on me. Danes impassioned vocals brought me back again and again to a disc that wound up by far as my favourite of the year and showcased that Dane was comfortable outside of the confines of Nevermore.

2. Testament ~ THE FORMATION OF DAMNATION

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3. Brainstorm ~ DOWNBURST

4. Revolution Renaissance ~ NEW ERA

5. Jorn ~ LONELY ARE THE BRAVE

6. Tobias Sammet’s Avantasia – THE SCARECROW

7. Firewind – THE PREMONITION

8. Evergrey – TORN

9. Airbourne – RUNNIN WILD

10. Edguy ~ TINNITUS SANCTUS

11. Circle II Circle ~ DELUSIONS OF GRANDEUR

12. Axel Rudi Pell ~ TALES OF THE CROWN

13. Iced Earth ~ THE CRUCIBLE OF MAN – SOMETHING WICKED PART 2

14. AC/DC ~ BLACK ICE

15. Buckcherry ~ BLACK BUTTERFLY

16. Metallica ~ DEATH MAGNETIC

17. Mötley Crüe ~ SAINTS OF LOS ANGELES

18. Motörhead ~ MOTORIZER

19. Metal Church ~ THIS PRESENT WASTELAND

20. Black Stone Cherry ~ FOLKLORE AND SUPERSTITION

Best New Band

Airbourne

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I have already received some opposition for even contemplating making Airbourne best new band. You know what? Fuck it. I have been hearing for ages how they are AC/DC clones but there have been tons and tons of bands who have tried to do what AC/DC has done and fallen flat on their face. Sure, the riffs can sometimes be duplicated but often it is the attitude and heart that’s lacking. Airbourne has both in spades.

Best DVD

Nevermore – Year of the Voyager

I have waited for a decent representation of Nevermore to hit DVD and here it is. I received this dvd just before Christmas and its awesome!!

Dissapointments

Guns n’ Roses – Chinese Democracy

Axl should have laid this to rest. What a waste…

Judas Priest – Nostradamus

I just can’t find anything good to say about this. It’s a decent disc I guess but so damn boring..


Biggest hopes for 2009

New Savatage

Its time that the Savatage took some time and put out a new disc. It doesn’t take forever (regardless of what Mr Rose says) to put out a great disc.  I would love to hear Zak and Jon together again.. I can dream.. Can’t I?

 

 

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Best of 2008 – Waspman

January 4th, 2009
by EvilG

Top 20

1) Amon Amarth – Twilight of the Thundergod

2) Opeth – Watershed

3) Sabaton – The Art of War

4) Ironsword – Overlords of Chaos

5) Guns ‘N Roses – Chinese Democracy

6) Into Eternity – The Incurable Tragedy

7) Metallica – Death Magnetic

8) Motorhead – Motorizer

9) King’s X – XV

10) Dragonforce – Ultra Beatdown

11) Testament – Formation of Damnation

12) Zero Down – Good Times at the Gates of Hell

13) Cradle of Filth – Godspeed on the Devil’s Thunder

14) Unearth – The March

15) Kalmah – For the Revolution

16) Bob Catley – Immortal

17) Avantasia – The Scarecrow

18) Pyramaze – Immortal

19) Crom – Vengeance

20) Brainstorm – Downburst



Best New Band

Crom – Vengeance

I’ve been waiting for this since being stunned by 2004’s Fallen Beauty E.P. and I am not disappointed. Vengeance is every bit as powerful as expected and hopefully serves as a wake-up call to the metal world.

Best DVD – N/A



Disappointments of 2008

Zero Hour – Dark Deceiver

Checking in with the band for the first time since 2001’s mighty Towers of Avarice, I was crushed to hear a band more widdly and riffless than ever. This is the stuff that non-fans point to when hacking on prog-metal.

Edguy – Tinnitus Sanctus

Count me among the minority the actually loved Rocket Ride. Call that album a joke if you will but the real joke is this “return to form”. Not bloody likely – this is embarrassing!

Iced Earth – The Crucible of Man

We all thought that bringing back Barlow (yay alliteration!) was going to “fix” Iced Earth. Pfft. Ripper was not the problem – it’s Schaffer’s uninspired writing. After the “woohoo Barlow” reaction wears off, the bland music is all that’s left. They still kick ass live though.

Not having the chance to hear new albums by Helstar, Swallow the Sun, Evergrey, and Pharaoh.

 

Greatest Hopes for 2009

1. New album from Slayer

2. New album from Heaven & Hell

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Best of 2008 – EvilG

January 4th, 2009
by EvilG

1. Testament – THE FORMATION OF DAMNATION

testsment.jpg

I am still shocked at how awesome this thrashterpiece is. Often when my hopes are this high before an album release I end up being disappointed with the end result, but not this time. We did have a LONG wait for this album considering it’s their first since THE GATHERING (1999)! Having original guitarist Alex Skolnick back in the band (he left after 1992′s THE RITUAL) plays a big role as well.

2. Brainstorm – DOWNBURST 

brainstorm


Yeah so I’m an Andy B. Franck fan-boy.  I first became captivated with Symphorce and then Brainstorm. Andy’s voice keeps on getting better as does both bands that he fronts. On DOWNBURST the band stick with their power/thrashy mixture of melodic yet aggressive metal…and it doesn’t get much better than this.


3. Iced Earth – THE CRUCIBLE OF MAN – SOMETHING WICKED PT 2

4. Into Eternity – THE INCURABLE TRAGEDY

5. Metallica – DEATH MAGNETIC

6. Firewind – THE PREMONITION

7. Mötley Crüe – SAINTS OF LOS ANGELES

8. Tobias Sammet’s Avantasia – THE SCARECROW

9. Motörhead – MOtORIZER

10. Cavalera Conspiracy – INFLICTED

11. Chrome Division – BOOZE, BROADS & BEELZEBUB

12. Warrel Dane – PRAISES TO THE WAR MACHINE

13. Metal Church – THIS PRESENT WASTELAND

14. Moonspell – NIGHT ETERNAL

15. Edguy – TINNITUS SANCTUS

16. Circle II Circle - DELUSIONS OF GRANDEUR

17.  Jon Oliva’s Pain – GLOBAL WARNING

18. Judas Priest - NOSTRADAMUS

19. Sabaton – THE ART OF WAR

20. Revolution Renaissance – NEW ERA

BEST NEW BAND

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Revolution Renaissance – NEW ERA

The jury is still out on how much of a “band” this is versus Tolkki’s solo project. I found it hard to pick a best new band this year and hesitated in selecting Revolution Renaissance because the album is about a 3/5 on my scale. I like a lot of the songs and it had plenty of repeat plays but all of the slower ballad orientated songs should have been replaced with songs in the vein of “Speed of Light”…then I would have been satisfied.


BEST DVD

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Gamma Ray – Hell Yeah!!! The Awesome Foursome: Live In Montreal

This DVD was talked about and delayed for quite a while and in late 2008 it was finally released.  After seeing Gamma Ray live this past September, at the same venue as this DVD was shot at  (Le Medley, Montreal, Canada) I can say that the DVD does capture the magic and power of a Gamma Ray show. The only thing that would of made this DVD twice as awesome would have been if it was a 4 DVD set featuring both Gamma Ray and Helloween from the Hellish Rock tour. The show closers where both bands took to the stage was hopefully pro-shot and can one day be released! But that aside, this DVD is a must for Gamma Ray / power metal fans. The sound quality is very good but the video is a little sub-par. It’s well above bootleg of course, but with the bar being raised so high with high definition, you can really see the graininess and lack of HD quality that most of us are used to and demand. The DVD bonus materials are fun to watch with a road movie, videos, a live at Wacken segment (has higher quality picture than the main DVD) some Gamma Ray “histoRay”, behind-the-scenes antics, and more.

BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENTS of 2008

Judas Priest – NOSTRADAMUS

This one did not grow on my like I hoped it might. After all the build-up and hopes I had for this album it completely failed to deliver the goods. Out of the 2 CDs of material there is ALMOST enough to make one OK album, but so much of the material plods along and I lost interest rather quickly. After the self-titled song was released as a teaser to the album I thought all the material would be as strong….PAINKILLER this ain’t!

Death Angel – Killing Season

Taking another step along the road first trodden with their comeback album THE ART OF DYING (2004) Death Angel continue to move away from what they do best…thrash! I love Motorhead but I do not love Death Angel playing dirty rawk and roll/metal. For me their peak was the modic thrash album ACT III. I’m still waiting for “Act IV”.


GREATEST HOPES FOR 2009

1. Heaven and Hell – Can the reunited Dio Black Sabbath release an album as godly as their new band name, easily the best Dio/Sab album HEAVEN AND HELL? I can’t wait to find out!

2. Slayer – Can they continue with an album similar to the amazing CHRIST ILLUSION?

3. Primal Fear – I expect the German power commandos will continue to kick ass with “Before The Devil Knows You’re Dead” in May 2009!

4. HammerFall – “No Sacrifice, No Victory”, the 7th studio album by HammerFall out February 20, 2009.

5. Rhapsody (of fire) – This band hasn’t put out an album since the piece of shit TRIUMPH OR AGONY in 2006. Here’s hoping that Luca stops being so weird and gets Rhapsody back for some SPEEDY symphonic power metal from the enchanted lands! :)

6. Savatage (I can still continue to dream)

I’ve listed this one for this section for several years to no avail. SAVATAGE, WE MISS YOU! TSO is great and makes you a load of money, but why can’t you take a couple months of the year to record new Savatage material with Jon and Zakk on vocals…what a huge album it could be! I know that Circle II Circle and Jon Oliva’s Pain are both great (they are in my top 20 this year) and Chris Caffery is also quite active with his solo stuff, but combined you all could unleash something quite groundbreaking. 

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RUDY SARZO

January 2nd, 2009
by Robert Williams

Rudy Sarzo.jpg

 

Interview Conducted By Robert Williams

Videography Courtesy Of Sandra Torres 

 

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Canadian filmmaker Justin McConnell (Working Class Rock Star)

January 2nd, 2009
by EvilG

 Working Class Rock Star

Justin McConnell - "Working Class Rock Star"

Interviewed by EvilG

"Working Class Rock Star" is a must see documentary for anyone in a band, anyone who wants to be in a band, or fans interested in what most bands go though. I was given the opportunity to talk to the brains behind this new documentary, Justin McConnell.

 

 

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Apocalyptica / Swallow The Sun – The Astoria, London

December 31st, 2008
by Hanntu

Apocalyptica

with Swallow The Sun

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The Astoria, London

12th December 2008

Live pics by HannTu

Live review by HannTu and Jess

Apocalyptica really love touring in the UK, considering this is their third visit in the space of 12 months. And with the long black-shirted line snaking around the back of the venue, it appears that London at least loves Apocalyptica too. This time, there is more metal cred than ever, with the highly rated Swallow the Sun supporting, more metalheads turned up to the Astoria than they had done at the Forum in March.

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VADER – Piotr “Peter” Wiwczarek

December 31st, 2008
by Arto Lehtinen

VaderLogo.jpg

 Piotr "Peter" Wiwczarek of VADER

Interview and live pics by Arto Lehtinen and Luxi Lahtinen

Transcription by David Groves (thanks mate!)


Vader, the legendary death metal force from Poland, have made quite a career for themselves with many successful albums and tours. Vader has also underwent some radical line-up changes over the years. Despite these line-up changes, the band’s mastermind Piotr "Peter" Wiwczarek has managed to remain loyal to the original roots of Vader, navigating the band successfully from the stormy waters to calmer and flavorable harbors since the mid 80’s.

We met Peter about 2 hours before the showtime and had this great opportunity to make a long and in-depth interview with Peter regarding the recent comp. album XXV, talk about these line-up changes of the band – amongst many other things as well. The interview was conducted on October 21st 2008 when Vader were terrorizering the Finnish territories together with Grave and Zonaria.


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Moțrhead РHelsinki Ice Hall, Finland on December 16th 2008

December 31st, 2008
by Luxi Lahtinen

motorhead_england.jpg

Motörhead – Helsinki Ice Hall, Finland, on December 16th, 2008

Review and live pictures by Luxi Lahtinen


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Virus / Infestation / Affluenza – Rock Attic, London

December 31st, 2008
by Hanntu

Virus

with Infestation and Affluenza

i7.JPG

The Rock Attic, Streatham, London

20th December 2008

Live pics by HannTu

Live review by Stu Occupier

Virus were one of the first thrash bands to come out of the UK back in the early 80s, progressing from their punk/oi roots to lead the budding thrash movement in the UK. Unfortunately, despite touring with major names like Megadeth, Voivod, Kreator and Celtic Frost, they never struck it big. Metalworks Records kept faith in them and three albums were released, PRAY FOR WAR (1987), FORCE RECON (1988) and LUNACY (1989), but internal problems as well as the band’s apparent disregard for seniority within the metal press world (Coke punching a Kerrang editor in a London club being only one example) meant that the band split up. Now Coke McFinlay (guitars and vocals) and Virus are back and kicking arse, with a brand new line-up – consisting of Matt Cooper (bass, ex-Cellbound), Dave Sherwood (drums, ex-Doreterna, ex-Tiberium) and Sam Brandon (guitars, Matron) – and an upcoming EP.

–HannTu


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Volbeat at Guitar Gangsters and Cadillac Blood Scandinavian Tour KB Malmoe Sweden 2008

December 30th, 2008
by Anders Sandvall

volbeat_logo_1.jpg

Volbeat

Guitar Gangsters and Cadillac Blood Scandinavian Tour

Kulturbolaget

Malmoe

Sweden

9/12 – 2008

 

Reviewed by: Anders Sandvall

Pictures by: Anders Sandvall

Volbeat_live_10.jpg

 

 

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Biohazard at 20 Years of Chaos! European Tour Kulturbolaget in Malmoe Sweden 2008

December 26th, 2008
by Anders Sandvall

Biohazard

20 Years of Chaos! European Tour

Kulturbolaget

Malmoe

Sweden

4/12 – 2008

 

Reviewed by: Anders Sandvall

Pictures by: Anders Sandvall

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Dave Martone – Canadian Guitarwizard

December 25th, 2008
by Anders Sandvall

 Martone_logo.jpg

Martone is one of Canada’s most respected guitarists. His latest album CLEAN has recently been released so I decided to take a closer look at this new shredder. As you can see it became a long interview and I hope you are gonna have as much fun reading it as I had interviewing him. 

 

Interviewed by: Anders Sandvall


Thanks to Barbara Lysiak publicist at Magna Carta Records for setting up the interview.
Thanks to Barbara Lysiak and Magna Carta for the promo pics of Dave Martone.

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GWAR

December 23rd, 2008
by Robert Williams

GWAR Logo.jpg

Gwar’s Oderus Urungus and Sleazy P. Martini

Interview conducted by Robert Williams

Videography courtesy of Sandra Torres

 

Disclaimer: The following video contains some explicit language and may not be suitable for some viewers. The opinions expressed wherein do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of metal-rules.com and the metal-rules.com staff.

In other words…please be advised there is some mudslinging and / or foul language.  

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BENEDICTION – Frank Healy

December 23rd, 2008
by Arto Lehtinen

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The long time British death metal squad Benediction have travelled a long road since the early days of the catacombs of the underground and enjoyed success in the heyday of death metal in the early 90’s. Surviving through some rough years and member changes, Benediction have been able to stay loyal to the roots of what Benediction is known for. The latest output KILLING MUSIC once again presents the true classic Benediction style with skullbreaking death metal riffs. It was about time to have an interview with bassist Frank Healy telling more about the new album and touring life as well.


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Destruction and supports : Tavastia, Helsinki, Finland 2008

December 23rd, 2008
by Arto Lehtinen

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DESTRUCTION

DEBAUCHERY  & SCARED TO DEATH

Tavastia Helsinki Finland 

04.12.2008


The legendary German thrash metal patrol Destruction have been a more or less regular visitor up in the northernmost territories of Finland. Therefore, it could have been expected the trio would have expanded and gained the fanatical and loyal mad butcher fanbase. But the cold reality literally hit the face in the most brutal way on thursday when the german thrash butchers stroke back on their own headlining tour with a couple of the countrymates.

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