It is not too often that the 2500+ capacity MacEwan Hall gets completely sold out for Metal shows, but Slayer, who have performed at this same venue a few times before, managed to do just that on their most recent stop in Calgary, Alta. Slayer is riding high on what many people are saying is their best album in years (REPENTLESS [Nuclear Blast, 2015]) and the legions of Metal were out in force! Managing crowds and traffic flow is a complicated endeavor at the best of times and it was a bit of a struggle on Monday night.
England’s Gentlemans Pistols have maintained a steady, if somewhat low-key – and apostrophe-free – presence over much of their dozen years together. Led by frontman/guitarist/founder/lone original member James Atkinson, they have released three albums – the latest of which, Hustler’s Row, arrived in mid-October – and toured mostly around their home country and mainland Europe, with a few gigs in Japan.
With Hustler’s Row, however, the band stand to make something of a bigger splash. For one thing, after two albums on the modestly underground Rise Above Records, the Pistols have signed with Nuclear Blast for the new record. For another, since 2009 the band’s ranks have included guitarist Bill Steer, whose other band – and fellow Nuclear Blasters – Carcass have experienced a remarkable resurgence in the wake of their 2012 comeback album Surgical Steel, raising the Pistols profile – even if slightly – by osmosis.
And Hustler’s is just an all-around more likable album than the previous releases, full of bouncy rhythms from drummer Stuart Dobbins and new bassist Robert Threapleton, fetching harmonies and hooks, and fantastic guitar teamwork from Steer and Atkinson. Its retro vibe channels everyone from Thin Lizzy and Deep Purple to The Sweet and Traffic, with just a hint of old Iron Maiden and Judas Priest, without ever sounding like mere idol worship.
Via Skype from the band’s home base of Leeds, Atkinson offered the following about the new album and the label situation, the evolution of Steer’s involvement with the band and its impact on their sound, and his hopes for the road ahead as the Pistols look to strike while the iron is comparatively hot.
We placed some constraints on what we deem a “comeback” to be. The band must have been broken-up, or on hiatus/dormant for at least 10 years. The band must of returned with a full-length studio album. Bands that have long periods between albums (i.e. W.A.S.P. Nightwish, Metallica) do not count because they were active touring, recording, putting out live albums etc.
My husband and I showed up to The Black Sheep in Colorado Springs, Colorado at 8:00 on Halloween night. Allegedly doors were at 7:00 but I guess the show started early or something, because we missed openers Noisem from Baltimore and Exhumed! I was looking forward to seeing Noisem because they hail from near my homeland in Richmond VA and have a split out with some friends of mine from Richmond, Occultist. I really like grindcore, and from what I’ve heard recorded they are pretty rippin’. I also of course wanted to catch Exhumed, being that they are one of my all-time favorite bands, but I have seen them before and will no doubt get to catch them again.
A lyric video for “Livestock Marketplace,” a track off the upcoming Surgical Remission / Surplus Steel 5-song EP release due out in North America on November 10th, is now available for streaming on the Nuclear Blast YouTube channel:
Bloodstock has become something of a staple holiday for many metal heads, with its fine selection of musical delights, the drinking until dawn, great company, dressing up and of course the bin jousting! What more could you want besides all of this?
Disinterred British extreme metal icons CARCASS, will return to the United States once again this October/November! Joining them on select dates are Florida death metal legends OBITUARY and the eclectic champions of “murder metal”, MACABRE. Death grinders EXHUMED and newcomers NOISEM will open each night of churning insanity as well.
“We thought it would be cool to go off the beaten track a bit and play some places that usually get overlooked,” commentedCARCASS frontman Jeff Walker. “We figure some of the tumbleweeds needed blowing away. Pretty chuffed to have managed to get our pals OBITUARY to come along on these dates. As anyone who has seen them recently will testify they’re tearing it up live nowadays!” Read the rest of this entry »
TUSKA OPEN AIR 2014
Suvilahti, Helsinki, Finland June 27-29, 2014
Review by Arto Lehtinen, Marko Syrjala
Pics by Arto Lehtinen, Marko Syrjala
The Tuska Open Air Festival is definitely a real metal festival institution amongst all other metal festivals in Europe. This Sivulahti area almost located in the heart of Helsinki, only a few kilometers away from the downtown of Helsinki, is a perfect place for the metallic onslaught during the weekend. The line-up of 2014 looked once again amazing. Anthrax and of course the legion of the Norwegian (former) black metal artists such as Satyricon, both Emperor and Dimmu Borgir as headliners. Of course a few cult metal bands like Metal Church, Stone could be witnessed. The festival was an utter success although the event wasn’t sold out. All in all 24000 people visited Tuska during three days.
Metal-Rules.com was present to check out a lot of bands and enjoy the sun and rain.
70000 tons Of Metal is the biggest heavy metal cruise on the planet. It has gained and created a loyal and fanatical following amongst metal fans around the globe in a short few years. Even though there were a lot of discussions, and even some outrage on the official 70000tons forum and social media, about the long silence while waiting to hear about the booking of the bands. However, the whole cruise was a surrealistic experience for journalists and fans alike. Spirits were not dampened by a rainy day which whipped the Caribbean sea and the ship, Majesty Of The Seas, about. The metallic mayhem on the sea sailed from Miami, Florida to Costa Maya, Mexico and back. Here is the brief write-up of all these bands who appeared on the ship.
INTERVIEW BY MARKO SYRJALA AND ARTO LEHTINEN
LIVE PICTURES BY MARKO SYRJALA
The legendary Carcass returned with a vengeance! Their new album SURGICAL STEEL is an amazing piece of evidence showing how the band has remained stainless and sharp. The album has literally blown both new and old fans easily away. Carcass embarked on their European tour with Swedish viking metallers Amon Amarth and British occult metallers Hell. They arrived to Helsinki to play a sold out show for the Finnish metal freaks. Before the show, Metal-Rules.com talked to Bill Steer about touring, Carcass re-union time, past times, and of course the new album. Read the rest of this entry »
Kaapelitehdas (Cable Factory)
The 9th of December 2013
Article by Arto Lehtinen and Marko Syrjala
Pictures by Arto Lehtinen
Gigs on a Monday evening are never an ideal time for concert goers, as getting up the next morning can be nothing but an exhausting deadly experience. In this case, when three are awesome bands sharing the bill: Hell, Carcass and Amon Amarth, the exception can be accepted and getting up late for the work or school can be approved. The Cable Factory was totally packed as over a thousand metal bangers had arrived to share the metal feeling despite the blowing ice cold winter wind.