TesseracT Claims Top Honors In Phil’s Picks’ 2018 Top 10 New Hard Rock & Metal Albums List

Courtesy: Kscope records

This year has been a truly productive time for the metal community.  Veteran acts, up-and-comers and even the underground have produced offerings that have given the metal masses more than enough reason to put their horns in the air all year long.  The most notable acts who have released standout albums this year include, and are not limited to  from All Hail The Yeti, Judas Priest and Artillery just to name a few bands.

Keeping this in mind, rock and metal critics the world over will have to agree that developing a list of the year’s top new hard rock and metal offerings was a monumental task.  That was especially the case for this critic.  This critic’s list of the year’s top new hard rock and metal albums features new albums from bands from both sides of the Atlantic and from the mainstream and the underground.

Taking the top spot in this year’s list from Phil’s Picks is none other than the British prog-metal outfit TesseracT, Sonder.  The band’s latest offering is both musically and lyrically a truly in-depth offering that holds its own in the metal community and the prog community.

Second place this year goes to Florida’s own Nonpoint.  The band’s aptly-titled is a powerhouse offering from the veteran hard rock band that shows Nonpoint as a band at the top of its game both musically and lyrically.

Judas Priest takes the bronze this year with its new album Firepower.  This one was not an easy choice to make, as Nonpoint, Judas Priest and TesseracT are all outstanding bands in their own right.  Firepower harkens back to some of Judas Priest’s best work from days long gone, and is such a welcome album.  With lyrics that pay tribute to the military, that make a bold statement of standing up for one’s self and more, it is that much stronger, so it was not with ease that the album ended up in third.

Also featured in this year’s list are new albums from Artillery, All Hail The Yeti and Soulfly just to name a few more. As always, the top 10 albums are the main list while the five that follow are all honorable mention titles.  With all of this in mind, here is Phil’s Picks 2018 Top 10 New Hard Rock and Metal Albums.


  1. TesseracT — Sonder
  2. Nonpoint — X
  3. Judas Priest — Firepower
  4. Between The Buried and Me — Automata
  5. Soulfly — Ritual
  6. Sevendust — All I See Is War
  7. All Hail The Yeti — Highway Crosses
  8. Exmortus — The Sound of Steel
  9. Artillery — The Face of Fear
  10. The Amsterdam Red Light District — Sapere Aude
  11. Ice Nine Kills — The Silver Scream
  12. Black Label Society — Grimmest Hits
  13. Unearth — Extinction(s)
  14. Atreyu — In Our Wake
  15. Zardonic — Become

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ESPN Networks Announce Broadcast Schedule For Week 11 Of College Football’s 2018 Season

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN has announced its broadcast schedule for Week 11 of the 2018 college football season.

This week’s schedule features a number of games that have major playoff implications.  One of the most notable of the week’s games is an ACC matchup between undefeated No. 2 Clemson and No. 22 Boston College.  The headlining Saturday Night Football game is scheduled to air live at 8 p.m. Saturday on ABC.

ESPN’s College GameDay Built by the Home Depot will set up the game Saturday morning starting at 9 a.m.  It will broadcast live from the campus of Boston College.  Saturday’s broadcast marks the first time since 2009 that College GameDay Built by the Home Depot has aired from Boston College.

The Eagles are 4-1 in ACC play and second to Clemson in the ACC’s Atlantic Division.  The matchup is critical in Clemson’s search for a division (and conference) title, and for the team’s hopes for a spot in this year’s College Football playoffs.

Other key matchups featured in this week’s schedule are No. 7 Oklahoma taking on Oklahoma State at 3:30 p.m. on ABC and No. 8 Washington State on the road against Colorado at the same time on ESPN.  Both games have their own importance to this year’s college football playoffs impacts.

Also, if the Sooners and Cougars each win their games, they will play in their respective conference title games.  A win for either team additionally puts each group in good position to be considered for the playoffs.

Georgia hosts Auburn at 7 p.m. on ESPN in yet another key matchup for Week 11. ESPN2 will feature yet another big game at noon as UCF and Navy (AAC) face off in Florida.  The Knights have the nation’s longest winning streak while the Midshipmen are coming off a loss to Cincinnati in Week 10, so they will be hungry to get back in the “W” column, and to stop the Knights’ streak.

The full schedule of this week’s games is noted below.


Time (ET)



Tue, Nov 6

7:30 p.m.

Kent State at Buffalo

Kevin Brown, Ray Bentley


Wed, Nov 7

7 p.m.

Ohio  at Miami (Ohio)

Matt Barrie, Rocky Boiman


8 p.m.

Toledo at Northern Illinois

Chris Cotter, Desmond Howard


 Thu, Nov 8

7 p.m.

North Carolina Central at Bethune-Cookman

Tiffany Greene, Jay Walker


7:30 p.m.

Wake Forest at No. 21 NC State

Dave Flemming, Tim Hasselbeck/Matt Hasselbeck, Laura Rutledge

Radio: Bill Rosinski, David Norrie, Ian Fitzsimmons


Fri, Nov 9

7 p.m.

Louisville at No. 19 Syracuse

Jason Benetti, Kelly Stouffer, Olivia Dekker



10:15 p.m.

No. 23 Fresno State at Boise State

Mike Couzens, Kirk Morrison, Alyssa Lang


Sat, Nov 10


Wisconsin at No. 14 Penn State

Mark Jones, Dusty Dvoracek, Molly McGrath



South Carolina at Florida

Dave Pasch, Greg McElroy, Tom Luginbill



Navy at No. 12 UCF

Anish Shroff, Ahmad Brooks, Roddy Jones



Tulsa at Memphis

Mike Corey, Rene Ingoglia



Vanderbilt at Missouri

Dave Neal, DJ Shockley, Dawn Davenport

SEC Network


SMU at UConn

Drew Fellios, Al Groh



Akron at Eastern Michigan 

Dan Gutowsky, Bob Carpenter



Coast Guard Academy at Merchant Marine Academy

Robert Lee, Matt Chatham



12:20 p.m.

North Carolina at Duke

ACC Network Extra


1 p.m.

Troy at Georgia Southern



2 p.m.

North Texas at Old Dominion



2:30 p.m.

Charlotte at Marshall



3 p.m.

Liberty at No. 25 Virginia

ACC Network Extra


Middle Tennessee at UTEP



Jackson State at Alabama State



Bowling Green at Central Michigan

Chris Vosters, Marcus Ray



3:30 p.m.

Oklahoma State at No. 7 Oklahoma

Steve Levy, Brian Griese, Todd McShay



No. 8 Washington State at Colorado

Bob Wischusen, Brock Huard, Allison Williams



Purdue at Minnesota

Beth Mowins, Anthony Becht, Rocky Boiman



Virginia Tech at Pittsburgh

Kevin Brown, Andre Ware



Kentucky at Tennessee

Taylor Zarzour, John Congemi, Kris Budden

SEC Network


4 p.m.

East Carolina at Tulane

Jay Alter, Dustin Fox



Appalachian State at Texas State



5 p.m.

Georgia State at Louisiana



Louisiana-Monroe at South Alabama



Arkansas State at Coastal Carolina



7 p.m.

Auburn at No. 6 Georgia

Sean McDonough, Todd Blackledge, Holly Rowe



Miami at Georgia Tech

TV: Clay Matvick, Dan Orlovsky, Paul Carcaterra

Radio: Bill Rosinski, Barrett Jones, Ian Fitzsimmons

ESPN2 and ESPN Radio


South Florida at Cincinnati

Bill Roth, Mike Golic Jr.



Rice at Louisiana Tech



Florida International at UTSA



7:30 p.m.

No. 3 LSU at Arkansas

Tom Hart, Jordan Rodgers, Cole Cubelic

SEC Network


8 p.m.

No. 2 Clemson at No. 22 Boston College

Chris Fowler, Kirk Herbstreit, Maria Taylor



10:30 p.m.

UNLV at San Diego State

Mark Neely, Ray Bentley, Alex Corddry



10:30 PM

California at USC

Adam Amin, Rod Gilmore, Quint Kessenich

ESPN and ESPN Radio


Colorado State at Nevada

Roy Philpott, Tom Ramsey


Not all digital games are exclusive

More information on the ESPN networks’ college football coverage is available online along with all of the latest college football news at:


Website: http://www.espn.com/college-football

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/CFBonESPN

Twitter: http://twitter.com/espncfb


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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

ESPN Announces 2018 NBA Pre-Season Broadcast Schedule

Courtesy: ESPN

ESPN has announced its early broadcast schedule for its coverage of the NBA’s 2018 pre-season.

The ESPN networks will broadcast five NBA pre-season games, beginning with a Western Conference matchup between the Denver Nuggets (Northwest Division) and the Los Angeles Lakers (Pacific Division) on September 30.  Coverage for that game is currently scheduled to start at 9:30 p.m. ET on ESPN.

The second game on the schedule — another Western Conference matchup — is scheduled to be broadcast October 5 at 10:30 p.m. ET, also on ESPN.  This time, the Sacramento Kings (Pacific Division) are scheduled to visit fellow Pacific Division foes and defending NBA Champion Golden State Warriors in that game.

NBA fans get a double treat on October 10 as ESPN will carry a double header schedule that day.  First up at 8 p.m. ET, the Chicago Bulls will host the Indiana Pacers in the Eastern Conference Central Division.  At 10:30 p.m. ET the Lakers play host to the Warriors in the Western Conference Pacific Division.

The Lakers and Warriors play one more time October 12, this time on ESPN2.  Coverage of that game is scheduled to start at 10:30 p.m. ET.

The full broadcast schedule for ESPN’s NBA pre-season is outlined below.  All five games on the schedule will also be simulcast online via the ESPN app.

Full schedule:


Time (ET)




Sun, Sept. 30

9:30 p.m.

Denver Nuggets at Los Angeles Lakers

Valley View Casino Center,

San Diego, Calif.


Fri, Oct. 5

10:30 p.m.

Sacramento Kings at Golden State Warriors

KeyArena, Seattle, Wash.


Wed, Oct. 10

8 p.m.

Indiana Pacers at Chicago Bulls

United Center,

Chicago, Ill.


10:30 p.m.

Golden State Warriors at Los Angeles Lakers

T-Mobile Arena,

Las Vegas, Nev.


Fri, Oct. 12

10:30 p.m.

Los Angeles Lakers at Golden State Warriors

SAP Center,

San Jose, Calif.


More information on ESPN’s NBA coverage is available online now along with all of the latest NBA headlines at:


Website: http://www.espn.com/nba

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NBAonESPN

Twitter: http://twitter.com/ESPNNBA


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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.

Adelitas Way Signs New Management Deal With FM Music Management

Courtesy: O’Donnell Media Group

Veteran rock band Adelitas Way has signed a new management deal.

The band signed a new deal this week with FM Music Management.  The artist management company’s roster includes other big names such as Nonpoint (whose new album X is scheduled to be released this Friday, August 24 via Spinefarm Records), Kataklysm, Through Fire, Royal Bliss, Deadset Society, Keith Wallen, Spoken and others.

FMM Partner/Manager Dino Kourelis talked about the band’s addition to the agency’s roster in a recent interview.  He said he was glad to have the band as part of the agency’s roster.

“We are excited to bring Adelitas Way in to the FM Management family,” Kourelis said.  “Adelitas Way continues to evolve and push the envelope in rock, and and Rick’s [DeJesus — Adelitas Way front man] passion and work ethic is unrivaled.  We look forward to helping them continue to climb.”

DeJesus shared Kourelis’ thoughts.

“My vision for Adelitas Way is clear and the mission is clear,” DeJesus said.  “We are going to continue to master our craft and grow to a point that is part of setting an example for all artists who see our story!  That takes a great team.  I’m excited for Fuel Music/the Vegas Syn to combine powers with an innovative, forward thinking company with my friend Frank Mastalerz leading the way with FM Music Management.  He has built an amazing team of music peers I’ve been working with for many years, and I’m looking forward to more exciting opportunities to grow.  Let’s do what we do best.”

Adelitas Way originally formed in 2006 and released its debut self-titled album in 2009 via Virgin Records.  That record was followed up in 2011 with its sophomore album Home School Valedictorian, which was released, also via Virgin Records.  Stuck, the band’s third album, was released in 2014, and would be its last for Virgin Records.

Its fourth album, 2016’s Getaway, was its first for The Vegas Syn/Fuel Music.  Notorious followed more than a year later in October 2017.  It was also released via the Vegas Syn/Fuel Music.

Adelitas Way’s music has been featured on television in various ways throughout its career.  That includes being featured in various WWE programs (and even in at least one WWE video game) and NFL programs on ESPN and FOX.  It has even been featured in an episode of CBS’ CSIMiami.

Courtesy: O’Donnell Media Group/Seek&Strike/Spinefarm Records

Adelitas Way will join Fozzy on the road starting this Saturday, August 25 in Birmingham, Alabama for the latest leg of Fozzy’s tour in support of its most recent album Judas (2017).  Also joining the band as suppor for Fozzy are The Stir and Stone Broken, which will be touring in support of its latest album Ain’t Always Easy (released April 13 via Spinefarm Records).

More information on Adelitas Way is available online now at:


Website: http://www.adelitaswaymusic.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/adelitasway

Twitter: http://twitter.com/adelitasway


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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.



Yanks Look To Sweep Jays Sunday In Weekend Series Finale Live On TBS

Courtesy: Turner Sports

The New York Yankees continue their post season hunt Sunday afternoon on TBS as they close out a three-game weekend series against the Toronto Blue Jays.

The “Bronx Bombers” just wrapped the second win of the series earlier today, taking Game Two 11-6 against Toronto.  Luis Severino (15-6) was credited with the win for New York while Sean Reid-Foley (0-2) took the loss for the Jays.

J.A. Happ (13-6) is expected to get the start Sunday afternoon for the Yankees. His last time on the mound was August 14 against Tampa Bay.  Happ was credited with the win in the Yanks’ 4-1 victory over the Rays in that game, allowing only 1 hit and 4 walks over 7 innings while striking out 4 batters.

Ryan Borucki (2-2) is expected to get the start for Toronto.  His last time on the mound was also August 14 when Toronto took on the Royals.  Jake Petricka (2-1) was credited with the win for Toronto while Borucki struggled slightly over the course of just four innings.  Borucki only struck out one batter while allowing four runs on six hits, four earned runs and four walks, so he’ll be looking to improve Sunday afternoon when the Blue Jays close out this weekend’s series against the Yankees in the teams’ American League East matchup.

While the Yankees (76-46) — currently second in the American League —  have taken two of three already this weekend from the Blue Jays, it won’t make too much difference in the race against long-time rivals the Boston Red Sox.  However, one more win is still critical for the “Pinstripers” because New York is just ahead of Houston (74-48) and Oakland (73-49) in the American League standings, so Sunday’s game will still have its own importance for New York as it tries to maintain its place in the race to the post season.

The Blue Jays also have nothing to lose as they sit below the cutoff line in the American League standings for the post season at 55-67 with little chance at a playoff spot. This weekend’s losses have Toronto in the midst of a two-game losing streak and have dropped the team to 4-6 in its last 10 games.  The losses drop Toronto’s road record now to 26-35 so far on the season versus a 29-32 home record, so by the numbers, the odds are in New York’s favor to sweep this weekend’s series against Toronto.

Brian Anderson will anchor Sunday’s broadcast live from New York.  He will be joined in the booth by analyst Ron Darling for additional commentary.  Coverage is scheduled to start at 1 p.m. live on TBS.  More information on Sunday’s game and all of the network’s Major League Baseball coverage is available online now at:


Website: http://www.tbs.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/TBSNetwork

Twitter: http://twitter.com/tbsnetwork


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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.


Wrath Signs To Combat Records; Announces New Album Release Date, Specs

Combat Records roster has grown again.

The famed hard rock label has added veteran thrash outfit Wrath to its roster.  The band is scheduled to release its new 10-song album Rage — co-produced by Chris Djuricic, and mixed and mastered by Bill Metoyer (Slayer, Sacred Reich, Helstar) — on October 5. 

Pre-orders are open now. The album’s track listing is noted below. Many of the songs included in Rage were originally composed as far back as 1989 and were originally intended as a follow-up to the band’s 1990 album Insane Society. A tribute to Motorhead closes out the album with a cover of the band’s hit song ‘Ace of Spades’ featuring Jeff Duncan (Armored Saint/DC4/Odin) on vocals.

RAGE Tracklist:

10. ACE OF SPADES (Featuring Jeff Duncan)

Wrath first rose to fame in 1985 with its breakout debut Fit of Anger.  That record was followed two years later in 1987 by the cult favorite Nothing To Fear.

The band’s original front man Gary Golwitzer rejoined the band for Rage‘s creation.  He was joined by Gary Modica on bass, Scott Nyquist and Rob Noon on guitar and Jake Fromkin on guitar to round out the group.

Wrath will join Combat Records label mates Green Death on EMP Label Group/Combat Records head and Megadeth bassist Dave Ellefson on his upcoming BASSTORY tour. That schedule is noted below.

David Ellefson BASSTORY, w/ Green Death and WRATH

10/3 Bradley, IL – The Looney Bin
10/4 Lombard, IL – Brauer House
10/5 Sturtevant, WI – Route 20 Outhouse
10/6 Ringle, WI – Q and Z Expo Center
10/7 Mankato, MN – What’s Up Lounge

More information on Wrath’s new album, tour dates, news and more is available online now at http://www.facebook.com/wrathchicago.

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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.



PBS Distribution’s New ‘Arthur’ DVD Is A Welcome “Present” In Any Family’s Home DVD Library

Courtesy: PBS Distribution

Later next month, PBS Distribution is bringing fans of PBS Kids’ hit series Arthur a special new present in the form of the series’ new DVD, Arthur: D.W. and the Beastly Birthday.  The DVD’s release will come nearly a year after the special first aired on PBS Kids—Aug. 2, 2017.  Why PBS would wait this long to release the DVD is anyone’s guess.  That aside, it proves to be a presentation that the whole family will enjoy.  That is due in part to the story at the center of the DVD’s main feature and its companion story.  This will be discussed shortly.  The bonus companion episode included in the DVD adds its own touch to the DVD’s presentation.  Its average price point rounds out its most important elements.  Each element is important in its own way, as will be discussed here.  All things considered, they make Arthur: D.W. and the Beastly Birthday a new Arthur DVD that was well worth the wait.

PBS Distribution’s new forthcoming Arthur DVD, D.W. and the Beastly Birthday is a DVD that was well worth the year-plus wait.  That is proven in part to the story at the center of center of the DVD’s main feature.  The story takes a page from the famed children’s book Where The Wild Things Are.  In the case of this story, it’s D.W.’s birthday, but Arthur doesn’t want to get pulled into the annual celebration.  That’s because every year, Arthur has to do everything that D.W. wants.  So he gets her a card, not realizing it’s for a boy, and then goes to a show at the planetarium with his classmates as an excuse to avoid her birthday party.  However, while he’s there, the Earth goes through a wormhole, aging everyone except for Arthur’s class by four years.  Of course, the whole thing is a dream sequence, just like D.W.’s trip to Ukubonga, where Arthur’s friends happen to look just like the creatures from the aforementioned book.  Both brother and sister learn their own valuable lesson in the process, obviously.  What’s really interesting to note, in a deeper examination, is that considering this story, one could even argue that the classic Jimmy Stewart classic movie It’s A Wonderful Life was a partial influence, considering the whole thing happens as a result of two dream sequences – the realization of what life would be like, etc.  Keeping in mind the dual influences in this story, and the story that results from those influences, what audiences get here is a story that will entertain audiences of all ages and also ensure said viewers’ engagement.  Sure, it’s not fully original, but there is enough originality here that it makes the story stand easily on its own merits.  To that end, the story at the center of the DVD’s main feature is reason enough in itself for this DVD to be in any family’s home DVD library.  It builds a strong foundation for the DVD’s presentation.  The companion episode Arthur’s Birthday strengthens that foundation even more.

The companion episode included in D.W. and the Beastly Birthday, Arthur’s Birthday strengthens the DVD’s presentation even more as it presents its own birthday-themed story that boasts its own identity separate from that of the DVD’s main feature.  Taken from very first season of Arthur, this story sees Arthur having to navigate some difficult waters when it turns out that Muffy is having her birthday party on the same days as his.  The problem comes when Muffy announces that anyone who doesn’t come to her party isn’t her friend anymore.  Obviously the whole thing has a happy ending after a compromise is made.  That lesson about compromise is in itself key to the episode’s whole from which the whole family will benefit in taking in.  Add in the fact that this episode comes from the series’ debut season and that not even one season of the hit series has been released to DVD or even Blu-ray in whole to this day from PBS Distribution, and the episode proves even more ,a present in itself for audiences. Maybe PBS’ people will read this and take this to heart.  A lot of people would like to see this series start getting proper full season releases from PBS Distribution.  That aside, just having this episode included as a thematically complimenting piece is a bonus.  Having a piece of the series’ origins adds to its positive.  Having noted all of this, the bonus birthday episode is still not the last of the DVD’s positives.  Its average price point rounds out its most important elements.

The average price point of Arthur: D.W. and the Beastly Birthday sits at $6.24.  That price was obtained using the DVD’s listing at PBS’ online store and online listings from Target, Best Buy and Amazon.  It didn’t seem to be listed at Wal-Mart’s online site.  Even with this in mind, a 70-minute presentation between the two features at $6.24 is not a bad price at all.  It’s actually quite affordable.  And considering that 70-minute run time, it’s a price that will more than pay for itself as families will enjoy the DVD time and again whether together or if younger viewers watch by themselves.  To that end, the DVD’s average price point proves truly critical in its own right to the DVD’s whole.  When this is considered along with the content in the features and the features themselves, what audiences get here is a DVD that, again will is a welcome present in any family’s home DVD library whether on birthdays or other days.

PBS Kids’ new Arhur DVD, D.W. and the Beastly Birthday is a welcome present for any family whether on a birthday or other day of the year.  That is due in part to the DVD’s main feature, which entertains audiences while presenting some valuable life lessons.  Much the same can be said of the DVD’s companion Season One episode, Arthur’s Birthday.  That episode is also a welcome look back at the history of Arthur since the series still has yet to get a proper full-season release from PBS Distribution.  The DVD’s fully affordable average price point proves to be another positive to the DVD.  Each element is key in its own way to the whole of this DVD.  All things considered, they make Arthur: D.W. and the Beastly Birthday a welcome present for the whole family whether on a birthday or any other day.  It will be available August 14.  more information on this DVD is available online now along with plenty of games, printables, activities and more at:




Website: http://pbskids.org/arthur

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/ArthurPBS




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 https://philspicks.wordpress.com.