Royal Blood Announces Album Release, Tour Dates

Courtesy:  Warner Brothers Records

Courtesy: Warner Brothers Records

UK rock duo Royal Blood will release its self-titled debut album this summer.

Royal Blood will be released in North America on Monday, August 25th. The album will be released in North America via Warner Brothers Records. It comes on the heels of the band’s recently released EP Out of the Black. That record was released March 18th.

Pre-orders for Royal Blood begin Tuesday, July 29th. The album will be released digitally, on CD, vinyl, and on special D2C package. Warner Brothers Records and the duo—Mike Kerr (vocals, bass) and Ben Thatcher (drums)—have made available or streaming the single ‘Figure It Out’ available for fans to stream while they await the album’s release. Fans can stream it now via SoundCloud now https://soundcloud.com/royalblooduk/figure-it-out-single/s-Uogoa. Fans can also go online to Spotify to check out the band’s new exclusive Spotify “Sessions” Live EP, which features four songs off of Royal Blood that were recorded earlier this year in New York City.

Royal Blood will hit the road in support of its upcoming album beginning Tuesday, July 15th at the Tremont Music Hall in Charlotte, North Carolina. From there, the duo will tour through the Northeast and Midwest to round out the month of July before touring Canada throughout August. Royal Blood’s most current tour schedule is listed below.

2014 U.S. Live Dates

July 15 – Tremont Music Hall – Charlotte, NC

July 18 – Underground Arts – Philadelphia, PA

July 19 – Baltimore Sound Stage – Baltimore, MD

July 20 – DC9 – Washington, DC

July 22 – Brighton Music Hall – Allston, MA

July 23 – Walter Street Music Hall – Rochester, NY

July 24 – Shelter – Detroit, MI

July 25 – The Basement – Columbus, OH

July 26 – The Ballroom at the Taft – Cincinnati, OH

July 28 – The Rave – Milwaukee, WI

July 30 – Harrah’s Hotel & Casino – Council Bluffs, IA*

July 31 – Lincoln Hall – Chicago, IL^

August 1 – Lollapalooza – Chicago, IL

August 3 – Osheaga Music and Arts Festival – Montreal, QC

September 27 – Humphreys – San Diego, CA#

September 30 – The Masonic Auditorium – San Francisco, CA#

October 2 – Revolution Center – Boise, ID#

October 3 – Performing Arts Center – Spokane, WA#

October 5 – Macewan Hall – Calgary, AB#

October 6 – Shaw Conference – Edmonton, AB#

October 7 – TCU Place – Saskatoon, SK#

October 9 – Burton Cummings – Winnipeg, MB#

October 11 – State Theatre – Minneapolis, MN#

October 12 – Orpheum Theater – Madison, WI#

* With Arctic Monkeys

^ With Portugal. The Man

# With The Pixies

 

More information and all the latest news and tour updates from Royal Blood is available online at http://www.facebook.com/RoyalBloodUK, http://royalbloodband.com, and http://twitter.com/royalblooduk. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Battlecross Announces New Tour Dates, Starts Working On New Album

Courtesy:  Metal Blade Records

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

The members of Battlecross have confirmed that the band will hit the road this summer for a headlining tour.

The band will kick off its upcoming headlining summer tour on Thursday, July 24th at The Basement in Columbus, Ohio. A pair of dates in North Carolina is also planned as part of the band’s tour. That pair of dates will see the band perform at the Greene Street Club in Greensboro, North Carolina on Friday, July 25th and The Casbah at Tremont Music Hall on Sunday, July 27th. The band will be joined by Crimson Shadows at both performances. Crimson Shadows, from Canada, was the winner of the most recent Wacken Metal Battle. New York-based band IKILLYA will also be on hand for support.

The first leg of the band’s summer tour runs through Thursday August 7th. Battlecross will join Killswitch Engage on Friday, August 8th and Sunday, August 10th at Expo 5 in Louisville, KY and at Austin’s in Libertyville, IL respectively. The band also has a performance scheduled for Saturday, August 9th at the DIRT Fest in Birch Run, MI. After finishing its U.S. run, Battlecross will head south for the South American leg of its tour. That leg of the band’s tour currently runs from Friday, August 22nd to Sunday, August 24th. Also on board for that leg of the tour will be Memphis May Fire and Killswitch Engage. Currently, the band is on tour in Europe in support of its latest release, War of Wills. The band is touring alongside Huntress and will be in Milano today. The band’s current tour schedule is listed below.

BATTLECROSS Summer 2014 European tour dates:
19/06/14 IT – Milano – Club Legend w/ Huntress
20/06/14 SI – Ljubljana – Orto Bar w/ Huntress
21/06/14 HR – Zagreb – Mochvara Club w/ Huntress
27/06/14 BE – Dessel – Graspop Festival

BATTLECROSS
Tour w/ Crimson Shadows
Thu/Jul-24 Columbus, OH @ The Basement
Fri/Jul-25 Greensboro, NC @ Greene Street Club
Sat/Jul-26 Elizabethton, TN @ The Bonnie Kate
Sun/Jul-27 Charlotte, NC @ The Casbah at Tremont Music Hall
Mon/Jul-28 Jacksonville, FL @ 1904 Music Hall
Wed/Jul-30 Reading, PA @ Reverb
Thu/Jul-31 Buffalo, NY @ Waiting Room
Fri/Aug-01 Hartford, CT @ Webster Underground
Sat/Aug-02 Albany, NY @ Bogies
Sun/Aug-03 Ottawa, ON @ Mavericks
Mon/Aug-04 Quebec City, QC @ L’Agitee
Tue/Aug-05 London, ON @ Rum Runners*
Wed/Aug-06 Syracuse, NY @ Lost Horizon
Thu/Aug-07 Pittsburgh, PA @ Smiling Moose
End tour
Fri/Aug-08 Louisville, KY** @ Expo 5
Sat/Aug-09 Birch Run, MI @ DIRT Fest
Sun/Aug-10 Libertyville, IL** @Austin’s
*co-headline w/ Macabre
** w/ Killswitch Engage

BATTLECROSS South American tour dates
w/ Killswitch Engage, Memphis May Fire
Fri/Aug-22 Curitiba, Brazil @ Music Hall
Sat/Aug-23 Sao Paulo, Brazil @ Carioca Club
Sun/Aug-24 Rio de Janeiro, Brazil @ Circo Voador

Along with its upcoming tour dates, the members of Battlecross have also announced that the band has started work on its third full length album. Guitarist Hiran Deraniyagala shared his thoughts regarding the connection between the short headlining tour and the album. He said of the band’s expectations for both, “We’re excited to announce our first headline run in quite a while. It’s short but sweet, and this gives us time to write the new record this summer.” Fellow guitarist Tony Asta added his thoughts, too. “The past year has been very inspiring for the band and our attitude towards the writing process this time around is more confident and driven,” he said. “I expect our next album to kick you in the ass harder than the last. Album #3 will be a serious contender in 2015 and a defining Battlecross record.”

More information on Battlecross’ upcoming tour, album and more is available online now at http://battlecrossmetal.com, http://www.facebook.com/battlecrossmetal, and http://twitter.com/battlecross. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Andy Grammer Announces New Album Details, Debuts New Video

Courtesy:  S-Curve Records

Courtesy: S-Curve Records

Andy Grammer released more information on his upcoming sophomore full length studio release Tuesday.

Grammer announced that his upcoming sophomore release will be titled Magazines or Novels. It was also announced that the album is currently scheduled to be released Tuesday, August 5th on S-Curve Records. Grammer spoke on the inspiration behind the album’s title, explaining that it came from seeing the changing headlines of all of the covers and headlines on the newsstands out there. “While I was writing this album I kept seeing magazine and newspaper stands with their constantly changing covers and headlines and thinking how they come and go so fast,” he said. He expanded on his explanation noting that in writing so much for so the album’s final number of songs, he wanted to make sure he presented audiences with an album that would have staying power. As he put it, “I had to write about 100 songs to get 13 I felt had something grounded and timeless about it. I don’t know if I achieved my goal but I hope I was able to create songs that were timeless and not something that would come and go off the newsstands. I hope this collection of songs can have the staying power in someone’s life like a favorite novel or book.”

Along with the announced details for his new album, the video for the album’s lead single ‘Back Home’ also debuted yesterday. The video mixes footage of Grammer and his friends on his tour bus set alongside footage of him performing live. The video can be viewed online now at http://www.billboard.com/articles/columns/pop-shop/6114144/andy-grammer-back-home-video-premiere-magazines-novels/.

While Magazines or Novels doesn’t hit stores and online outlets until August, Grammer has already kicked off a summer tour to build anticipation and excitement for the album. The tour kicked off yesterday, June 10th in Phoenix, Arizona. He has a trio of performances scheduled in Texas tomorrow, Friday and Sunday. There is also a performance scheduled for Monday, June 23rd at the Visulite Theatre in Charlotte, North Carolina. Grammer’s current tour schedule is listed below.

Summer Headlining Tour Dates (w/ support from Kate Voegele and Brendan James):
Tue      6/10                 Phoenix, AZ                            The Crescent Ballroom
Thu      6/12                 Houston, TX                            Fitzgerald’s
Fri        6/13                 Austin, TX                               The Parish
Sun      6/15                 Dallas, TX                               House of Blues
104.3fm Presents My Big Night Out w/ Ed Sheeran, Demi Lovato, Colbie Caillat
Mon     6/16                 Los Angeles, CA                     Hollywood Bowl
Summer Headlining Tour Date (w/ support from Andrew Ripp and Brendan James):
Tue      6/17                 Nashville, TN                          3rd & Lindsley
Wed     6/18                 Atlanta, GA                             The Loft
Thu      6/19                 Jacksonville, FL                      Freebird Live
Fri        6/20                 Clearwater, FL                        Capitol Theatre
Sat       6/21                 Orlando, FL                             Beacham Theatre
Mon     6/23                 Charlotte, NC                          Visulite Theatre
Tue      6/24                 York, PA                                 The Pullo Center
Wed     6/25                 Boston, MA                             House of Blues
Thu      6/26                 New York, NY                         Irving Plaza
Fri        6/27                 Ridgefield, CT                         Ridgefield Playhouse
Sun      6/29                 Philadelphia, PA                      World Café Live
Mon     6/30                 Alexandria, VA                        The Birchmere
Tue      7/1                   Millvale, PA                             Mr. Small’s Theatre
Wed     7/2                   Chicago, IL                              House of Blues
Sat       7/5                   Covington, KY                         Madison Theater
Sun      7/6                   Pontiac, MI                              The Crofoot
Tue      7/8                   Minneapolis, MN                     Varsity Theater
Fri        7/11                 Denver, CO                            Summit Music Hall
Sat       7/12                 Salt Lake City, UT                  The Complex
Mon     7/14                 Seattle, WA                             Neumos
Tue      7/15                 Portland, OR                           Hawthorne Theatre
Thu      7/17                 San Francisco, CA                 Great American Music Hall
Sat       7/19                 San Diego, CA                        House of Blues

More updates and news on Grammer’s tour, album and more are available online at http://www.andygrammer.com, http://www.facebook.com/andygrammer, and http://twitter.com/andygrammer. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Whitechapel Debuts Video For New Single

Courtesy:  Metal Blade Records

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

Veteran metal band Whitechapel released the video for the title track to its new album this week.

The video, which can be viewed online now at http://www.metalblade.com/whitechapel, features footage of the band performing live over the song. Guitarist Alex Wade explained, noting that “this video was shot over the past few tours and shows the intensity of our live show.” After the song’s done, fans can stick around for discussions from the band on the creation of Our Endless War through a series of segments. The video’s release coincides with the band’s tour, which kicked off last week in St. Louis, Missouri. Whitechapel is currently touring alongside Devildriver, Rivers of Nihil, Revocation, Carnifex, and Fit For An Autopsy in support of its new album. Along with its current performance scheduled for today, Whitechapel is also slated to perform live at the Tremont Music Hall in Charlotte, North Carolina on June 14th. The band’s current tour schedule is listed below.

WHITECHAPEL w/ Revocations and Rivers of Nihil:
05/14: St Louis, MO @ Fubar
05/15: Kansas City, MO @ Czar Bar

WHITECHAPEL w/ DevilDriver, Revocation, Carnifex, Rivers of Nihil and Fit For An Autopsy
05/17: Denver, CO @ Summit Music Hall
05/18: Albuquerque, NM @ Sunshine Theater
05/19: Tempe, AZ @ Marquis Theater
05/20: West Hollywood, CA @ House of Blues
05/21: San Diego, CA @ House of Blues
05/22: San Francisco, CA @ DNA Lounge
05/23: Sacramento, CA @ Ace of Spade
05/24: Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theater
05/25: Boise, ID @ Knitting Factor
05/26: Spokane, WA @ Knitting Factor
05/27: Seattle, WA @ El Corazon
05/29: Calgary, AB @ Marquee Beer & Market Stag
05/30: Edmonton, AB @ Union Hall
05/31: Regina, SK @ Riddell Centre
06/01: Fargo, ND @ The Venue
06/02: Minneapolis, MN @ Mill City Nights
06/03: Milwaukee, WI @ The Rave
06/04: Joliet, IL @ Mojoes
06/05: Kokomo, IN @ CenterStage Bar and Grill
06/07: Knoxville, TN @ The International
06/08: Cincinnati, OH @ Bogarts
06/10: Toronto, ON @ The Opera House
06/11: Pittsburgh, PA @ Altar Bar
06/12: New York, NY @ Stage 48
06/13: Philadelphia, PA @ Theater of the Living Arts
06/14: Baltimore, MD @ Baltimore Sound Stage
06/15: Charlotte, NC @ Tremont Music Hall
06/16: Atlanta, GA @ The Masquerade
06/17: Orlando, FL @ Firestone Live
06/18: Ft. Lauderdale, FL @ Revolution
06/20: Houston, TX @ Scout Bar
06/21: Corpus Christi, TX @ House of Rock
06/22: Dallas, TX @ Gas Monkey Bar ‘N Grill (Outside)
06/23: Austin, TX @ Mohwak

08/07: Clifton Park, NY @ Upstate Concert Hall*
08/08: Ottawa, ON @ Ritual*
08/09: Montreal, QC @ Parterre Parc Jean-Drapeau – Heavy MTL 2014**
08/10: Worcester, MA @ The Palladium
08/12: Richmond, VA @ The Canal Club
*With Stick To Your Guns
**Festival Appearance

Our Endless War is available now in stores and online. It can be ordered online at http://www.metalblade.com/whitechapel. Fans can also go online to http://www.facebook.com/whitechapelmetal, http://www.whitechapelband.com, and http://twitter.com/whitechapelband to get all the latest tour updates, news and more from White Chapel. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Whitechapel Winning The “War” With Its New Album

Courtesy:  Metal Blade Records

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

Tennessee based metal band Whitechapel released its fifth full length studio effort last Tuesday. That album, titled Our Endless War, has been met with mixed reviews from both fans and critics alike in the short time since its release. Those that are more experienced with will obviously be far more opinionated than those that might not be so familiar with the band’s body of work. One thing that both sides should be able to agree upon with this latest record is its heaviness both musically and lyrically. The album opens with the album’s absolutely searing title track that is an indictment of the country’s current state. Just as blistering is the Fear Factory style song ‘Worship The Digital Age.’ This song delves into the world’s overwhelmingly increasing obsession with things such as social media and all things digital. The band doesn’t let up an inch even as it reaches the last of the album’s dozen total tracks. The album’s closer, ‘Fall of the Hypocrites’ is brutal to say the absolute least. This applies both in terms of the song’s lyrics and its music. It will leave listeners breathless by the time it ends. Having experienced the album’s eleven other tracks, it will leave any naysayer agreeing that this is an album that any metal purist should hear at least once.

Whitechapel makes quite the statement on its latest release. The album’s opener and title track is a solid speed metal piece. There’s no denying that it is more listener friendly than some of the other material on this album. But in the band’s defense, there is nothing wrong with reaching out to a wider audience. The three-guitar attack of Ben Savage, Zach Householder, and Alex Wade makes for so much depth to the song. While one provides the song’s primary line, the other two work in tandem with bassist Ben Harclerode and drummer Gabe Crisp for an absolutely pounding opus. Vocalist Phil Bozeman’s heavy growling vocals are among the most powerful of any vocalist within the band’s sub-genre as he screams, “America our wasteland/Where death is entertainment/The place where moving forward/Means you turn the other direction/A place where reality existed/And we still continue to bleed.” This seething indictment of the current state of the nation continues throughout the course of the song, going after both the people and the politicians all at once. It’s a full-on unrelenting piece that is certain to impress any metal purist with its mix of adrenaline-fueled music and standard socio-politically charged lyrics. It’s just the start of what Whitechapel has to offer listeners on its new record, too.

Our Endless War’s socio-politically charged opener is a solid reintroduction for the band on its fifth full length studio effort. Just as blistering as that piece is ‘Worship The Digital Age.’ This song comes across as the band’s commentary concerning the world’s ever-growing obsession with the 24-hour news cycle, celebrity gossip and all things linked to the digital era. Given, it’s not the first song to ever tackle such topics. But it will most definitely keep listeners engaged thanks to its combination of music and lyrics. Again, each member of the band does his part to make this song one of the album’s most pummeling, musically. Bozeman backs up that heavy, grinding sound with his equally grinding vocals, screaming to listeners, “I can’t find it in me to resist and look away/This is where civilization falls/We have been convinced we need this to be entertained/This disease has consumed us all.” If this is indeed an indictment of people’s obsession with the noted topics, Bozeman couldn’t be more right. It really has become a disease of sorts. We are constantly living our lives online more and more. We are becoming more and more obsessed with our favorite celebrities and political figures. It makes one believe that this is truly where civilization finds its end. Bozeman notes himself in the song’s final verse, “Don’t waste your time/We’re already numb/Programmed for the now/And the future is none.” That one line, “programmed for the now” says it all. Our obsession with staying up with all the latest trends, etc. is going to be civilization’s end. Burton C. Bell and his band mates in Fear Factory would definitely be impressed by this piece.

Those that hoped for Whitechapel’s signature death metal sound on this record will be happy to know that the band hasn’t completely branched away from that sound this time out. The band closes its new album with the song ‘Fall of the Hypocrites.’ The band as a whole is razor shard throughout this final salvo. The song’s final verse puts the proverbial nail in the coffin, with Bozeman screaming, “You know who you are/Everyone sees right through those hateful scars/It’s a matter of time before we start to right these wrongs/We can start by using my chainsaw/The tongues come out first/to prevent venomous words/Then we’ll cauterize them and hang you by your necks/Behold the 8th wonder of the world.” Violent? Yes. A bit sarcastic in those final words? Yes. There’ no denying the fury and certainty in Bozeman’s words, either. Together with the song’s equally blistering musical side, it collectively leaves a lasting mark for the band.

‘Fall of the Hypocrites,’ Worship the Digital Age’ and ‘Our Endless War’ are each strong samples of what Whitechapel has to offer listeners on its new album. They aren’t the only positives to this new record. Listeners will each find their own favorite songs when they purchase or order Our Endless War for themselves. It is available now in stores and online and can be ordered direct from the Metal Blade Records online store at http://whitechapel.merchnow.com/products/173521. It can also be downloaded via iTunes at http://itunes.apple.com/album/id828056300.

Whitechapel is currently touring in support of its new album alongside Devildriver, Carnifex, Fit For An Autopsy, and label mates Revocation and Rivers of Nihil. It will perform today at Plaza Condesa in Mexico City, Mexico before taking a short break to recharge for the next leg of its tour, which begins next Wednesday, May 14th in St. Louis, MO. The band’s tour schedule also brings it to North Carolina this Summer. The band is scheduled to perform at the Tremont Music Hall in Charlotte, North Carolina on Sunday, June 15th. The band’s current tour schedule, news and more is available online at http://www.facebook.com/whitechapelmetal, http://www.whitechapelband.com, and http://twitter.com/whitechapelband. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Langhorne Slim Announces Special Record Store Day Release, Upcoming Tour

Courtesy:  Ramseur Records

Courtesy: Ramseur Records

Langhorne Slim and The Law will release a special two-song 7” vinyl in celebration of Record Store Day.

“Animal” will be released this Saturday, April 19th as part of the nation’s annual Record Store Day. The vinyl will be limited to only 1000 copies and will only be available for the day. It will retail for SRP of $6.98. Audiences that pick up the special vinyl will also receive with it, a download card with a link to a site where the song can be downloaded digitally and a link to a music video for the song. The video for ‘Animal’ was filmed while the band was on tour. The link to both the video and song download are available exclusively with purchase of the vinyl.

‘Animal’ was originally written for use in a 30-second Converse X Foot Locker advertising spot called “Made To Make A Scene.” The vinyl’s B-side is a new, previously unreleased song called ‘Space Girl.’ The band describes the song, written by Slim, as “”an improvised, psychedelic excursion recorded in a backyard in Texas.”

Slim explained in an interview that it was an indie record store in his home state of New Jersey and others across America today that helped shape his love of music today. And because they continue to be so influential today, the band wanted to give back to those shops by including its own piece to Record Store Day. “Thank goodness for independent record stores,” Slim said. “It was Princeton Record Exchange in NJ that saved me from the music shops in the mall when I was a kid.  And countless others around the country and world that have fed and nurtured my love and passion for music as a fan and provided me the ability to get my own stuff out there as an artist.  A thousand thank yous to all the indie record shops and may you live on forever!!”

Those not lucky enough to get their hands on a copy of Slim’s special new Record Store Day release can still catch the band live on tour. Langhorne Slim and The Law is set to hit the road next month along with The Avett Brothers, Jason Isbell, and Deer Tick. The band’s tour schedule also includes some headlining dates. The band’s current tour schedule is available below. It includes a pair of dates in North Carolina, the first being at the famed Filmore in Charlotte and the second being at The Orange Peel in Asheville.

MAY

9   Alabama Theatre, Birmingham, AL  (with Jason Isbell)

10   Fillmore, Charlotte, NC  (with Deer Tick)

11   Shaky Knees Music Festival, Atlanta, GA

13   The Social, Orlando, Fl  (with Deer Tick)

14   Crowbar, Ybor City, FL  (with Deer Tick)

16   The Pour House, Charleston, SC  (with Deer Tick)

17   The Orange Peel, Asheville, NC  (with Deer Tick)

18   Haw River Ballroom, Saxapahaw, NC  (with Deer Tick)

20, 21  The Black Cat, Washington, D.C.  (with Deer Tick)

JUNE

14   White Snake River State Park, Indianapolis, IN (with The Avett Brothers)

15   District Square, Kalamazoo, MI  (headline)

17   Space, Evanston, IL  (headline)

19   The Ready Room, St. Louis, MO  (headline)

20   Cricket Wireless Amphitheatre, Bonner Springs, KS  (with The Avett Brothers)

21   Cox Business Center, Tulsa, OK  (with The Avett Brothers)

JULY

5, 6   Ottawa Blues Festival, Ottawa, ON, CANADA

9-13    Winnipeg Folk Festival, Winnipeg, MB  CANADA

31   Gathering of the Vibes, Bridgeport, CT

AUGUST

1-3   Gathering of the Vibes

29-31  Campfire Outdoor Adventure & Music Festival, Lakewood, PA

 

More information on Langhorne Slim and The Law is available online at http://www.langhorneslim.com, http://www.facebook.com/pages/Langhorne-Slim/220789179696, and http://twitter.com/langehorneslim. To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Excision To Perform At Charlotte, NC’s Fillmore This Saturday

Courtesy:  MSO PR

Courtesy: MSO PR

Canadian-based dubstep artist Excision is coming to North Carolina as part of his current tour.

Excision will perform this Saturday, March 8th at The Fillmore in Charlotte, North Carolina.  He will be supported by French drum and bass duo Dirtyphonics and fellow Canadian Ill Gates.  Excision has released a series of singles in conjunction with his current tour, including the songs ‘Get Stupid’, ‘Rock You.’  ‘Get Stupid’ is a collaboration with Louisville, KY-based producer Space Lanes.  It is available now online at Destriod Music.  ‘Rock You’ is an update of Queen’s classic hit, ‘We Will Rock You.’

Excision’s current tour marks the return of his immense twenty-eight foot wide, fifteen-foot tall video and lighting wall called “The Executioner.”  The video wall was originally built for Excision’s 3D video mapped visual sequences.  This time out, “The Executioner” has brand new 3D visual animations that will run across its four hundred and twenty square feet of space.  Audiences can see just how massive “The Executioner” really is when they see Excision live this Saturday in Charlotte.  Tickets are available online now at http://www.flavorus.com/excision.  Audiences can check out a trailer for Excision’s tour is available online now at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l_Y3UW4V0t4.

More information on Excision is available online at http://www.excision.ca, http://www.facebook.com/Excision, http://twitter.com/excision and http://www.myspace.com/excision.  Fans can hear more of Excision’s music online via Soundcloud and YouTube at http://www.soundcloud.com/excision and http://www.youtube.com/excisionofficial.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Exmortus Debuts Video For Its Latest Single

Photo Credit: Stephanie Cabral

Photo Credit: Stephanie Cabral

The members of Exmortus have debuted the vide for the band’s new single, ‘Foe Hammer.’  The old school style video, directed by Ron Thunderwood (9 Electric), sees the band performing in front of the camera in a pseudo live setting.  This style of making music videos was used quite a bit in the late 80s and early 90s by any number of directors and bands.  It gives the audience a feel for what they are in store for at a live Exmortus show.  The video can be viewed online now at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CUD0gBG1TG8&feature=youtube_gdata_player.

Exmortus is currently touring in support of its new album Slave to the Sword now.  It will perform tonight at Diamond Pub & Billiards in Louisville, KY.  The band’s tour also includes a performance at The Milestone in Charlotte, North Carolina.  Ticket information and more for this and every show is available online at http://www.facebook.com/exmortusofficial.  The band’s current schedule of tour dates is listed below.

Watch EXMORTUS shred live atone of these dates:
2/28    Louisville, KY – Diamond Pub & Billiards #
3/1      Pittsburgh, PA – Altar Bar #
3/2      Philadelphia, PA – Trocadero #
3/7      Queens, NY-  Blackthorn 51*
3/8      Trenton, NJ- Backstage at Champs*
3/9      Richmond, VA- Strange Matter*
3/10    Charlotte, NC- The Milestone*
3/11    Columbia, SC-  New Brookland Tavern*
3/12    Savannah, GA- Dollhouse Productions*
3/13    Jacksonville, FL- Atticus Bar*
3/14    Miami, FL- Churchill’s Pub*
3/15    Tampa, FL- The Brass Mug*
3/16    Atlanta, GA – Club Famous*
3/17    Johnson City,TN- The Hideaway *
3/18    Pittsburgh, PA – Howlers Coyote Cafe *
3/19    Columbus, OH- Ace of Cups*
3/20    Cleveland, OH- Now That’s Class*
3/21    Rochester, NY- The Bug Jar*
3/22    Florence,MA – JJ’s Tavern *
3/25    Austin, TX @ Infest ^
3/26    El Paso, TX @ Tricky Falls ^
3/27    Phoenix, AZ @ Joe’s Grotto ^
3/28    Las Vegas, NV @ Cheyenne Saloon ^
3/29    Anaheim, CA @ Mirror Image ^
3/30    W. Hollywood, CA @ Whisky-A-Go-Go ^
4/1      San Francisco, CA @ DNA Lounge ^
4/2      Seattle, WA @ Studio Seven ^
4/3      Portland, OR @ Tonic Lounge ^
4/4      Vancouver, BC @ The Venue ^
4/5      Edmonton, AB @ Pawn Shop ^
4/7      Denver, CO @ Bluebird Theater ^
4/8      Kansas City, MO @ Riot Room ^
4/9      Des Moines, IA @ Wooly’s ^
4/10    Chicago, IL @ Reggies Rock Club ^
4/11    Rochester, NY @ Montage Music Hall ^
4/12    Toronto, ON @ Virgin Mobile Mod Club ^
4/13    Quebec, QC @ Complexe Meduse^
4/14    Montreal, QC @ Foufounes Electriques^
# with Dark Tranquility & Omnium Gatherum
* with Lich King
^ with Destruction & Krisiun

Fans can pick up Slave to the Sword now in stores or order it in a variety of formats via the Prosthetic Records online store at http://store.prostheticrecords.com/products/524528-exmortus-slave-to-the-sword-cd.

To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

BTBAM Releases Details For Upcoming DVD, Tour

Courtesy:  Metal Blade Records

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

The members of Between The Buried and Me announced on Friday that the band will record a brand new live DVD next month.  The as yet untitled recording will be for the band’s album The Future Sequence.  As front man Tommy Rogers notes of the upcoming DVD, “We are very happy to announce that we are finally doing a DVD for The Future Sequence. In this age we live in you can watch us play any of our songs live online. So we wanted to give our fans something a little different… an intimate live performance of us playing in a studio. It will be a wonderful experience and I hope you all enjoy it as much as we enjoy playing these songs.”

The upcoming live DVD will be recorded at the Fidelitorium in Winston-Salem, North Carolina and will be directed by Justin Reich.  Jamie King, who has worked with BTBAM for a number of years, will handle mixing and mastering the recording’s audio.  The completed package is expected to be released Fall 2014.

Before the band sits down to record its new DVD, it will hit the road once again in support of Future Sequence beginning this Wednesday, February 20th.  The band’s latest North American tour kicks off at the Empire in West Springfield, VA and runs through March 23rd in Charlotte, North Carolina.  Between the Buried and Me will be joined by Deafhaven, Intronaut, and The Kindred on its upcoming tour.  The band is scheduled to perform at Charlotte’s famed Tremont Music Hall on the closing date of its North American tour.  The band’s complete North American tour schedule is listed below.

BETWEEN THE BURIED AND ME
Tour w/ Deafheaven, Intronaut, The Kindred

02/20 West Springfield, VA Empire
02/21 Huntington, NY Paramount Theater
02/22 Clifton Park, NY Upstate Concert Hall
02/23 Boston, MA Royale Nightclub
02/24 Burlington, VT Higher Ground
02/26 Montreal, QC Corona Theater
02/27 Quebec City, QC Imperial De Quebec
02/28 Toronto, ON Phoenix Concert Theatre
03/01 London, ON London Music Hall
03/02 Syracuse, NY Lost Horizon
03/04 Grand Rapids, MI Intersection
03/05 Palatine, IL Durty Nellie’s
03/06 Milwaukee, WI The Rave
03/07 Lawrence, KS Granada Theatre
03/08 Omaha, NE The Waiting Room
03/10 Reno, NV The Knitting Factory
03/11 Oakland, CA Oakland Metro
03/12 Pomona, CA Glasshouse
03/14 Lubbock, TX Jake’s Sports Café
03/15 San Antonio, TX White Rabbit
03/16 Grand Prairie, TX South By So What?! Festival
03/18 Sauget, IL Pop’s
03/20 Ybor City, FL The Ritz Ybor
03/21 Ft. Lauderdale, FL Revolution
03/22 Athens, GA 40 Watt
03/23 Charlotte, NC Tremont Music Hall

More information on the new DVD from Between The Buried and Me, The Future Sequence and the band’s upcoming tour is available online at http://www.facebook.com/BTBAMofficial, http://twitter.com/btbamofficial, and http://www.betweentheburiedandme.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Exmortus’ Prosthetic Records Debut Is 2014’s First Great Metal Record

Courtesy:  Prosthetic Records

Courtesy: Prosthetic Records

Exmortus releases this week its debut album for its new label, Prosthetic Records. The band’s new album, titled Slave to the Sword is not the band’s first album.  It is in fact the third full length studio release from the Whittier, California based metal act.  But being the first for its new label, this latest release is one heck of a first impression for the band’s new bosses. As a matter of fact, Slave to the Sword is in this critic’s ears, the first truly great metal record of 2014.  One needs listen to this record just one time to figure out why it is deserving of this title.  Right from the opening assault of ‘Rising’, the band’s members show just how much they have honed their craft over the course of two previous releases to create this new metal masterpiece. The album’s opener is just the tip of the iceberg…sword?…for the band on this record.  ‘Immortality Made Flesh’ and the band’s full on power metal cover of composer Beethoven’s ‘Moonlight Sonata (Act 3)’ show just how much Exmortus’ members have grown in terms of their talent up to this point.  As impressive as these pieces are, they are just pieces of the whole that any purist metalhead will appreciate from Exmortus on this its third album.  Every listener will find his or her own favorite song(s) when they pick up Slave to the Sword for themselves.

Exmortus opens its new album fittingly with the song ‘Rising.’  Vocalist Conan screams ominously over the full on shredding attack of guitarist David Rivera, “Welcome/To the realm of darkness/We are anxious for your blood/Rising/From the depths we crawl/Rising/To devour all.” Conan’s vocal style is interesting.  It’s interesting because believe it or not, even with the growl, it doesn’t come across like that of so many other vocalists’ sounds that are little more than the standard cookie monster growl.  Rivera’s full throttle shredding is a nice addition, too.  Instead of the standard down-tuned, crunching guitars that seem to dominate so much of the metal community today, one can almost see smoke coming from Rivera’s fingers as they make their way up and down the neck of his guitar.  One need not even physically see Rivera play to be able to pick up on his talent.  Of course drummer Mario Moreno is well worth mentioning here, too along with bassist Jovanni Perez.  Moreno’s chops are incredibly solid throughout the course of the song’s near four-minute run time.  His timekeeping throughout the song is solid as a rock, even with all of the runs that he executes. And Perez is right there with Moreno, neither man missing a single note or beat.  The unit as a whole combines throughout the entire piece to make ‘Rising’ feel like a perfect opener both on record and in a live setting.

‘Rising’ is a fitting starting point for Exmortus on this record.  That’s because it shows without a shadow of a doubt that this band is indeed rising in the ranks of the metal world.  It proves this even more as it powers its way through the album’s third track, ‘Immortality Made Flesh.’  This single is available now for download from the Prosthetic Records online store at http://www.indiemerch.com/prostheticrecords/item/23123.  This track stands out so well because it exhibits much the same power from the band that is displayed through the album’s opener.  The difference between the two is that the energy established in ‘Rising’ is stepped up tenfold in this full throttle speed/thrash opus.  There is in this song, more of a sense of urgency in David Rivera’s performance here for lack of better wording.  Conan’s dark Amon Amarth style lyrics and vocals are just as strong, too.  So much more could be noted.  Simply put, their talent set alongside that of their band mates makes this song one of the highest of highs on this record.

‘Immortality Made Flesh’ is one of the highest points on Exmortus’ new record.  There is at least one more song that is more than deserving of being called a high point, though.  That song is the band’s amped up cover of composer Beethoven’s ‘Moonlight Sonata (Act 3).’  Conan gets to give his vocals arrest on this piece while his band mates get the chance to shine more than ever.  Its collective talent instantly conjures thoughts of Trans-Siberian Orchestra’s album, Beethoven’s Last Night and of other amped up covers from the band.  It truly shows the band’s talent and its versatility more than any other song included on this album.  So it comes as no wonder that it has been chosen as the band’s latest single.  It’s just one more of so many outstanding tracks that make this record again, the first truly great metal record of 2014.

The band is currently touring in support of Slave to the Sword.  Fans in North Carolina will get to experience music from the band’s new album live when it comes to The Milestone in Charlotte, North Carolina on March 10th.  Exmortus’ most current tour schedule, news and more is available online at http://www.facebook.com/exmortusofficial.  To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to http://www.facebook.com/philspicks and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at http://philspicks.wordpress.com.