Trumbiten Debuts New Single, ‘Fear Me’

Courtesy: O’Donnell Media Group

Independent metal band Trumbiten debuted its new single this week.

The band — Tommy Arngren and his son Adam Arngren — released its new single ‘”Fear Me’ Thursday.  The song is available to stream and download here.

The song’s musical arrangement is a heavy, up-tempo composition whose driving guitar, bass and drums create a whole whose style and sound that immediately lends itself to comparisons to works from bands, such as In Flames, Soilwork and Amon Amarth.

The song’s vocals are provided by Kandia front woman Nya Campos Cruz.  Her vocal sound and delivery style, interestingly enough, bears some similarity to that of legendary singer/guitarist Joan Jett.  The coupling of that vocal delivery sound and style and the song’s more modern metal musical approach makes for a song that is accessible in its own unique fashion.

The elder Arngren talked about the song’s creation and working with Cruz in a recent interview.

“It’s really awesome that social media, gig-platforms, digital tools and communication tools enable musicians to connect and to create music together in this way” said Tommy.

“This song is a result from a great collaboration between musicians, who have never met face-2-face, from Sweden, Los Angeles and Portugal,” he added. “Trumbiten had a plan to release an original song early next year, but the lyrics and the music idea started to form early June 2020 and two months later we were ready to plan for an upcoming release. It was so cool and inspiring to finalize the song in collaboration with Nya and Evan. Really amazing!!”

The lyrical theme featured in ‘Fear Me’ comes across as a statement of confidence and self-assurance.  This is inferred as Cruz sings early on, “I’m not to blame/I just play my game/I challenge your mind…I’m danger/I am fear/And you will know I’m here…I’ll be right there in your dreams/You’re gonna fear me.”  Some of the lyrics here are difficult to decipher without a lyrics sheet to reference, but from what can be understood, it would seem that the song’s lyrical theme is as noted.  The song’s second verse continues in similar fashion as its predecessor, leading even more to the supposition that this is more a song whose lyrical theme is meant to deliver a message of self-assurance and being confident in one’s own self.

‘Fear Me’ was produced by Evan Rodaniche (Cage9).

More information on Trumbiten’s new single is available along with all of the duo’s latest news at https://www.instagram.com/trumbiten.  More of the duo’s music is streaming through its official YouTube and Spotify channels.

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

Lutharo’s Latest EP Will Leave Listeners Feeling Anything But Agony

Courtesy: Asher Media Relations

Independent, up-and-coming metal outfit Lutharo’s new EP Wings of Agony is a welcome new addition to this year’s field of new hard rock and metal records in general.  That is due to the growth that the five-song record – the band’s second EP and second studio recording – exhibits in comparison to its 2018 debut EP Unleash The Beast.  This record takes the musical and lyrical content from that record and builds on each element with the result being a presentation that is even stronger than its predecessor.  The noted musical and lyrical content will be discussed separately here.  The musical and lyrical content is only a potion of what makes Wings of Agony stand out as a positive new offering from Lutharo.  The EP’s sequencing rounds out its most important elements.  It will also be discussed here.  All three elements are important in their own way to the whole of Wings of Agony.  All things considered, they make the EP a presentation that will appeal to any metal fan.

This past March, Lutharo released its sophomore EP – and second overall studio recording – in the form of Wings of Agony.  The 25-minute presentation is a work that will appeal to any metal purist.  It is another positive step forward for the band in its journey to becoming one of the metal community’s next big names.  That is proven in part through the record’s musical arrangements.  Whereas the musical arrangements featured in the band’s 2018 debut EP Unleash The Beast were focused primarily on a combination of power and death metal, this EP’s arrangements find the band taking a step forward and expanding its horizons.  Case in point is the EP’s second single, ‘Blood Lightning.’  The band — John Raposo and Victor Bucur on guitar, front woman Krista Shipperbottom, bassist Chris Pacey and drummer Duval Gabraiel – takes the power and death metal sound exhibited in Unleash The Beast and hones it even more.  There is more balance between Shipperbottom’s screams and clean vocals here than in the songs in the band’s previous EP.  What’s more, the production comes across as being cleaner, adding to the general effect. It is just one way in which the EP’s musical content stands out.  ‘Will To Survive’ makes the EP’s musical content stand out, too.

‘Will To Survive’ is such a full, powerful composition.  At its base is a speed metal style arrangement to which each member of the band contributes equally.  From the shredding guitars to the precision in the timekeeping to the low-end from the bass to the powerhouse vocals, every element works so well here.  This song’s arrangement is easily likened to works from Arch Enemy past and present.  In comparison to the songs featured in Unleash The Beast, there is really nothing comparable.  Again, it shows the band members’ creative growth.  It is just one more way in which the record’s musical content shows its importance.  ‘Diamond Back’ is another example of the importance of the EP’s musical arrangements.

‘Diamond Back,’ the EP’s second track, takes the band’s already established talents in death metal and metal in general, and adds a touch of metalcore influence into the mix.  That metalcore influence is especially audible in the drums and guitars, subtle as it is.  It lends itself to comparisons to works from As I Lay Dying and other harder-edged metalcore acts.  The combination of those influences is well-balanced here, with the result being another work that is just as enjoyable as the EP’s other arrangements.  When it is considered with the other arrangements noted here and the EP’s other pair of arrangements not discussed here, the end result is an overall musical presentation that will engage and entertain metal purists even more than that of Lutharo’s debut EP.

While the musical content featured in Lutharo’s latest EP goes a long way toward making the record enjoyable, it is just one part of what makes the record so appealing.  The musical content’s lyrical accompaniments add their own share of interest to the EP.  Again, the album’s latest single, ‘Blood Lightning’ is a prime example to cite.  The band explained the song’s lyrical theme in a prepared statement.

“The song ‘Blood Lightning’ is about having such an extreme passion for something so much so that it sets your soul on fire, for better or for worse,” the statement reads. “It is the endless struggle of putting your blood, sweat, and tears into something and receiving next to nothing in return. However, when you do catch a glimpse of your progress, it is enough to keep pushing forward even when you are constantly being beaten down and put to war. The music video for ‘Blood Lightning’ showcases all of the physical, emotional, financial, etc. Hard work that is put into pursuing your dreams in music.”

That statement is illustrated best through the song’s chorus, which finds Shipperbottom and company singing, “Each day I’ve spent/Ripping my heart to shreds/This dream I’ve bred/Now wide awake/These reins I’ve held/I grant them off to chance/Leaving the cuts on my hands/Unachievable bliss/Wrecked all of my innocence/Douse my wounds in gasoline/Cast my blood to lightning.”  This is a concept to which so many listeners will connect, considering that everyone has been in this position at one point or another at least once in life.  It is just one of the EP’s most notable lyrical presentations.  ‘Will To Survive’ is another example of why audiences will want to pay attention to the EP’s lyrical content.

‘Will To Survive’ stands out because it also comes across as taking on the issue of self-determination, much like ‘Blood Lightning.’  This case is different from that of ‘Blood Lightning’ at the same time, though.  That is because this song seems to come across as being from the vantage point of someone who has realized that they have let that determination get the better of himself/herself.  That is inferred in the song’s lead verse, which finds Shipperbottom singing, “Oh I shook hands with the devil himself/Our grip held the contents of hell/Conceit was spilling over his gaze/He nods at me now/It’s make or break/Make or break/It has begun/No time to waste/My calloused Core/they’ll never shake/ Behind these walls my life awaits.”  The song’s second verse adds to that inference as she sings, “Oh I’ve struck gold with a consequence/A gift to bare with a great expense/Yet I’m still fighting profitless/Proving my worth with every step/No repent/And Peace will come to those who’ve spent/My freedom wears a heightened sense/So line em ’up/I’ll pay my debt.”  Again, it comes across as a person realizing that success has perhaps come at too great a cost.  In other words, it comes across as sending that message of making sure that in one’s self-determination, one does not get too deep and let things get out of control.  It is just one more example of why the EP’s lyrical content is so important to its whole.  ‘Diamond Back’ is another notable way in which the EP’s lyrical content proves so important.

‘Diamond Back’ comes across as being another proudly defiant work that reminds listeners not to let adversity stop them in life.  In this case, that adversity would apparently come from those who would try to bring one down.  Shipperbottom says to those people in the song’s chorus, “It will give me great pleasure To take your last breath away/No remorse now/Trust in me/My skin is tougher than you’ll ever be/I gather my strength from which you lack/Forever Bearing a diamond back.”  That very mention of “bearing a diamond back” is a reference to a rattlesnake, which is a very dangerous species of snake.  What she comes across as saying here is that she’s always ready to strike (metaphorically, not literally) and that she is stronger than those people who want to tear her down.  She adds to the statement in the song’s second verse, “Proud I stand from which I’ve lead/Ruthless actions vast condemned/The moral plain to be said/Cross my path I’ll take your head.”  Again, here listeners get that seeming message of defiance and determination.  The rest of the song’s lyrical content builds on this statement and shows even more why the song is one more key example of the importance of the EP’s lyrical content.  When it is considered along with the rest of the EP’s noted lyrical content and that content not addressed here, the end result is such that it will appeal just as much to listeners as the EP’s musical arrangements.  Even as much as the EP’s lyrical content does to make it engaging and entertaining, it still is not the last of the record’s most notable content.  The EP’s sequencing rounds out its most important elements.

Wings of Agony’s sequencing ensures the record’s energy does its part to keep listeners engaged from start to finish.  It succeeds in that avenue, too.  The album starts off heavy and fast in ‘Barren.’  While the song’s opening bars are brooding and slow, the rest of the song is intense and extremely upbeat.  The same applies to the EP’s other four songs.  What this means is that the album’s energy remains high throughout its body, ensuring audiences are kept engaged from start to end of the EP.  That is a positive in its own right to the whole of this record.  When it is considered along with the EP’s musical and lyrical content, it shows once and for all why this EP is a presentation that every metal purist will appreciate.

Lutharo’s sophomore EP Wings of Agony is a presentation that will leave listeners feeling anything but agony.  It is in fact a presentation that the metal masses will appreciate.  That is proven in part through its musical arrangements.  The musical arrangements featured in this record show obvious growth from the band in whole.  It has taken the power and death metal influences exhibited in the band’s debut EP and built on that in each song here.  The lyrical content that accompanies the musical arrangements is accessible in its own right.  The EP’s sequencing ensures listeners’ engagement and entertainment in its own right, too.  Each noted element is important in its own right to the whole of this record.  All things considered, it becomes a work that every metal purist should hear at least once if not more.  Wings of Agony is available now.

More information on Lutharo’s new single, video and EP is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

 

Websitehttp://www.lutharo.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/LutharoOfficial

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/Lutharoband

 

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

Lutharo Debuts ‘Blood Lightning’ Video

Courtesy: Asher Media Relations

Independent hard rock band Lutharo debuted the video for its latest single this week.

The band debuted the video for its new single ‘Blood Lightning’ Thursday through Metal Injection.  The song is the second single from the band’s new EP Wings of Agony, which was released March 27.  The band debuted the video for the EP’s lead single/title track on Feb. 26.

The musical arrangement at the center of Lutharo’s new single presents a powerful death metal style approach through its guitar and drums.  Front woman Krista Shipperbottom’s vocal delivery style, which shows her ability to handle clean vocals and screams, adds to the song’s punch, as does the steady bass line of Chris Pacey.  The arrangement in whole will appeal to fans of bands, such as Arch Enemy, Unleash The Archers, and Amon Amarth.

The song’s lyrical theme matches the energy in its musical arrangement, as the band explained in a prepared statement.

“The song ‘Blood Lightning’ is about having such an extreme passion for something so much so that it sets your soul on fire, for better or for worse,” the statement reads. “It is the endless struggle of putting your blood, sweat, and tears into something and receiving next to nothing in return. However, when you do catch a glimpse of your progress, it is enough to keep pushing forward even when you are constantly being beaten down and put to war. The music video for ‘Blood Lightning’ showcases all of the physical, emotional, financial, etc. Hard work that is put into pursuing your dreams in music.”

“The shots taken to look like the set of a video shoot are meant to resemble the business aspect/behind the scenes work of being a musician, but also the high of performing live and seeing your visions come to life, while the single shots of each member in the middle of a storm are meant to display the emotional sacrifices and hardships that each individual goes through,” the statement further reads.

Wings of Agony‘s track listing is noted below.

 

Track Listing:
1. Barren (5:21)
2. Diamond Back (4:31)
3. Blood Lightning (4:41)
4. Will to Survive (5:09)
5. Wings of Agony (6:02)
EP Length: 25:45

 

More information on Lutharo’s new single, video and EP is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

 

Website: http://www.lutharo.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/Lutharoband

 

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

Knotfest.com Adds Amon Amarth Concert To Streaming Series

Courtesy: Cosa Nostra PR

Knotfest.com has added Amon Amarth to its ongoing streaming concert series lineup.

The website will feature the band’s 2018 hybrid documentary/live recording The Pursuit of Vikings25 Years in the Eye of the Storm at 3 p.m. ET on July 31. As an added bonus, the stream will also feature a live chat with Amon Amarth’s members during the event.  The combo package was released Nov. 16, 2018 through Metal Blade Records.

The documentary takes audiences through the band’s rich history both in studio and on the road, and includes a wealth of interviews with the band through that time.  The double-live recording features two sets from the band, performed at the 2017 Summer Breeze Festival in Dinkelsbuhl, Germany.

Guitarist Olavi Mikkonen said in an interview ahead of the package’s release, the band was glad to have both performances together in one setting.

“For the first night, we wanted to write a set that the fans would enjoy by wholly diving into our back catalog, but also keeping it interesting,” Mikkonen said.  “Putting the two shows together also made us realize that we had a lot of songs to choose from!”

The original trailer for the package is streaming here.

More information on The Pursuit of Vikings25 Years in the Eye of the Storm is available now online along with all of Amon Amarth’s latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Websitehttp://www.amonamarth.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/amonamarth

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/amonamarthband

 

 

 

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.

Jinjer, Judas Priest Added to Knotfest.com Live Streaming Concert Series

Cosa Nostra PR

Knotfest.com is continuing its live streaming concert series this month with two more concerts.

Up first in this month’s schedule of live shows is Jinjer’s March 5, 2020 show held at Max Watts in Melbourne, Australia.  Now audiences will get to see that performance through Knotfest.com at 5 p.m. ET July 9.

The second of this month’s live streaming shows through knotfest.com is Judas Priest’s full concert recording, Battle Cry, which was released on DVD and Blu-ray March 25, 2016 through Epic Records.  The concert featured in the recording was originally recorded on Aug. 1, 2015 at the annual Wacken Open Air Festival.

The set list that is featured in Battle Cry doesn’t just focus on the band’s then most recent album Redeemer of Souls.  Instead the band attempts to cover as much of its expansive body of work as possible over the course of its ninety minute run time.

Judas Priest’s performance is scheduled to stream 3 p.m ET on July 17 through knotfest.com.

Knotfest.com’s ongoing concert series has already featured performances from Slipknot, Lamb of God, Trivium, Behemoth, Amon Amarth, Anthrax, Kreator, King Diamond, Carnifex, Suffocation, Suicide Silence, and In Flames.  The concerts have helped raise money to charities that help with COVID-19 relief efforts.

More information on Knotfet.com’s concert series is available online along with all of the latest Knotfest.com news at:

 

Website: http://Knotfest.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/knotfest

 

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

 

Devin Townsend’s ‘Empath’ Gives The Best Feeling For Audiences In This Year’s New Hard Rock/Metal Field

Courtesy: InsideOut Music

This year is one of the strongest in recent memory for metal masses around the world.  This year saw new releases — powerful new releases at that — from some of the most well-known and respected names in the metal community.  Slipknot’s new album We Are Not Your Kind is just one of those important new releases that the metal masses received this year.  Amon Amarth’s new album Berserker gave the masses just as much to appreciate, as did new albums from Dragonforce, Killswitch Engage and The Offering.

Between those records and so many others, it goes without saying that developing a list of the year’s top new hard rock and metal albums was anything but easy.  That’s especially the case considering the release early this year, of Devin Townsend’s new album Empath, Hyvmine’s new LP Retaliation and up-and-comers Alien Weaponry’s debut album Tu.  This critic took a long time trying to assemble this list.  It was not a chore taken lightly.  As with other lists from this critic, it features the Top 10 New Hard Rock/Metal albums as well as five honorable mention titles for a total of 15 titles.  Without any further ado, here for your consideration is Phil’s Picks’ 2019 Top 10 New Hard Rock/Metal Albums.

 

PHIL’S PICKS 2019 TOP 10 NEW HARD ROCK/METAL ALBUMS

  1. Devin Townsend — Empath
  2. Slipknot — We Are Not Your Kind
  3. Amon Amarth — Berserker
  4. Overkill — The Wings of War
  5. The Offering — Home
  6. Bad Blood — Bad Blood
  7. Whitechapel — The Valley
  8. Hyvmine — Retaliation
  9. Dragonforce — Extreme Power Metal
  10. Of Mice & Men — EARTHANDSKY
  11. Dream Theater — Distance Over Time
  12. Killswitch Engage — Atonement
  13. Awake At Last — The Change
  14. Corroded — Bitter
  15. Alien Weaponry — Tu

 

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

Amon Amarth Debuts ‘Shield Wall’ Video; Launches North American Tour

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

Amon Amarth debuted the video for its latest single this week.

The band debuted the video for its new single ‘Shield Wall‘ Thursday.  The song is taken from the band’s new album Beserker.  The video, directed by Phil Wallis and produced by Alexander Milas/Twin V. Ltd., features a historically accurate depiction of viking battlefield tactics as a group of vikings works to hold off a horde of invaders against the song’s musical backdrop.  The video was shot on-site in Wolind, Poland, site of the famed Festival of Slavs and Vikings.

‘Shield Wall’ is the fourth single and video to come from Berserker.  The band released a video trilogy featuring videos for the songs ‘Crack The Sky,’ ‘Raven’s Flight‘ and ‘Mjolner, Hammer of Thor‘ ahead of and after the album’s release.

 

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

The same day the band debuted its new video, it also launched the new North American leg of its tour in support of Berserker.  The tour is scheduled to run through Oct. 26 in Los Angeles, CA and to feature performances in cities, such as Charlotte, NC; Denver, CO and Phoenix, AZ.

The tour’s schedule is noted below.  Arch Enemy, Grand Magus and At The Gates will join Amon Amarth for the tour as special guests.  Tickets are available here.

Berserker World Tour – Raid Of North America tour dates
w/ Amon Amarth, Arch Enemy, At The Gates, Grand Magus

September 30 – Edmonton, AB – Edmonton Convention Centre
October 1 – Calgary, AB – Grey Eagle
October 3 – Salt Lake City, UT – The Complex
October 4 – Denver, CO – Fillmore Auditorium
October 6 – Minneapolis, MN – Skyway Theater
October 7 – Chicago, IL – The Riviera Theater
October 9 – Toronto, ON – Rebel
October 10 – Montreal, QC – M Telus
October 11 – Montreal, QC – M Telus
October 12 – New York, NY – Hammerstein Ballroom
October 13 – Silver Spring, MD – The Fillmore
October 15 – Charlotte, NC – The Fillmore
October 16 – Atlanta, GA – Tabernacle
October 18 – New Orleans, LA – The Fillmore
October 19 – Houston, TX – House Of Blues
October 20 – San Antonio, TX – The Aztec Theatre
October 22 – Phoenix, AZ – The Van Buren
October 23 – Las Vegas, NV – House Of Blues
October 25 – San Francisco, CA – The Warfield
October 26 – Los Angeles, CA – The Palladium

More information on Amon Amarth’s tour, video and more is available online now at:

 

Websitehttp://www.amonamarth.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/AmonAmarth

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/amonamarthband

 

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.

Amon Amarth Completes ‘Berserker’ Video Trilogy; Continues Tour Schedule

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

Amon Amarth finished off the video trilogy from its latest album last week.

The band debuted the video for its single ‘Mjolner, Hammer of Thor‘ on May 31.  The song is the latest to come from the band’s new album Berserker, which was released May 3 through Metal Blade Records.

The video completes the trilogy that was started March 20 with the video for ‘Raven’s Flight‘ and continued with the video for the album’s second single, ‘Crack The Sky‘ on April 17.  The trilogy’s finale finds Amon Amarth leaving the club where it had performed and where an epic battle took place between the Berserker and a demonic female figure.  Before the Berserker can return to his realm, there is still one last battle between him and that evil demonic female.

Amon Amarth is touring in support of Berserker.  The band is scheduled to perform June 8 in Germany as part of the European leg of its tour.  That tour is scheduled to run through July 4.

Once the European leg of the tour wraps, the band will take the rest of the summer off before returning to North America for more live dates starting Sept. 26 in Seattle, WA.  That leg of the band’s worldwide tour is scheduled to run through Oct. 26 in Los Angeles, CA.  The tours’ schedules are noted below.

Summer European Festival Tour
June 6 – Sweden Rock – Solvesborg, Sweden
June 8 – Rock Im Park – Nuremberg, Germany
June 9 – Rock Am Ring – Nürburgring, Germany
June 11 – Incheba Expo – Bratislava, Slovakia
June 12 – Barba Negra Track – Budapest, Hungary
June 13 – Nova Rock – Nickelsdorf, Austria
June 14 – Greenfield – Interlaken, Switzerland
June 16 – Download UK – Donington, England
June 17 – King John’s Castle – Limerick, Ireland
June 20 – Knotfest at Hellfest – Clisson, France
June 21 – Graspop – Dessel, Belgium
June 22 – Copenhell – Copenhagen, Denmark
June 25 – Mystic Fest Poland – Krakow, Poland
June 27 – Sonic Park – Bologna, Italy
June 29 – Download Madrid – Madrid, Spain
July 1 – Le Bikini – Toulouse, France
July 2 – La Belle Electrique – Grenoble, France
July 4 – Rock Harz Festival – Ballenstedt, Germany

Berserker World Tour – Raid Of North America tour dates
w/ Amon Amarth, Arch Enemy, At The Gates, Grand Magus 

September 26 – Seattle, WA – Showbox SODO
September 27 – Portland, OR – Roseland Theater
September 28 – Vancouver, BC – PNE Forum
September 30 – Edmonton, AB – Edmonton Convention Centre
October 1 – Calgary, AB – Grey Eagle
October 3 – Salt Lake City, UT – The Complex
October 4 – Denver, CO – Fillmore Auditorium
October 6 – Minneapolis, MN – Skyway Theater
October 7 – Chicago, IL – The Riviera Theater
October 9 – Toronto, ON – Rebel
October 10 – Montreal, QC – M Telus
October 11 – Montreal, QC – M Telus
October 12 – New York, NY – Hammerstein Ballroom
October 13 – Silver Spring, MD – The Fillmore
October 15 – Charlotte, NC – The Fillmore
October 16 – Atlanta, GA – Tabernacle
October 18 – New Orleans, LA – The Fillmore
October 19 – Houston, TX – House Of Blues
October 20 – San Antonio, TX – The Aztec Theatre
October 22 – Phoenix, AZ – The Van Buren
October 23 – Las Vegas, NV – House Of Blues
October 25 – San Francisco, CA – The Warfield
October 26 – Los Angeles, CA – The Palladium

More information on Amon Amarth’s tour schedule, videos, album and more is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.amonamarth.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/amonamarthband

 

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

‘Berserker’ Is Another Viking Metal Victory For Amon Amarth

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

The wait for Amon Amarth’s new album is finally over.  A little more than three years after the band released its most recent album Jomsviking, the band returned Friday, with its 11th full-length studio recording, Berserker.  The veteran Swedish metal outfit’s latest offering, which once again has come through Metal Blade Records, is familiar territory for the band at least in terms of its lyrical content from start to finish.  Its musical content however, is another story.  Front man Johann Hegg said in a recent interview about the sound on the band’s new album Beserker that it is an exhibition of the band’s evolution as a unit.  “I think what we’ve done here is give ourselves the space to explore other parts of our musicality and who we are as a band,” Hegg said of the sound on this record.  That growth is a welcome change from the band this time out, as it shows the band’s ability to reach a more mainstream audience instead of just its core audience base.  One of the songs featured in this record, that serves to illustrate that ability comes early on in the form of ‘Mjolner, Hammer of Thor.’  It will be discussed shortly.  The album’s finale, ‘Into The Dark’ is another way in which that growth and change is clearly evidenced.  It is also another positive addition to the album.  ‘Fafner’s Gold,’ which opens the album, is yet another way in which the noted growth is exemplified in this record.  When all three songs are considered together with the record of the album, the whole of Beserker presents itself as a record that while maybe rather familiar for most listeners, is still a welcome new offering from the band that is yet another candidate for any metal critic’s list of the year’s top new metal and hard rock albums.

Amon Amarth’s 11th full-length studio recording Berserker is a welcome new offering from the veteran metal outfit that critics and listeners alike will agree is deserving of its own spot on any list of the year’s top new hard rock and metal albums.  That is despite (and because) of the familiarity of the record’s lyrical themes.  It is also because of the growth exhibited by the band’s members in the record’s musical arrangements.  ‘Mjolner, Hammer of Thor’ is one of the songs featured in this record that exhibits the growth in the band’s musical side.  The song’s musical arrangement boasts a very sharp similarity to the arrangement at the center of Judas Priest’s timeless hit ‘Breaking The Law.’  The two arrangements are not mirror images of one another.  However, the similarity is close enough that there is no denying the connection.  Whether Amon Amarth’s guitarists – Olavi Mikkonen and Johan Soderberg – set out to make something so closely akin to ‘Breaking The Law’ is anyone’s guess.  That aside, the bigger picture is that the arrangement is far more accessible, musically, than almost anything that the band has previously crafted.  To that end, it is a surprise that it was not chosen as Berserker’s lead single.  The song’s decidedly radio ready arrangement is, as important as it is, is just one part of what makes the song a solid addition to the record.  The song’s familiar lyrical content adds its own share of interest to the song.

The song’s lyrical content focuses on the norse myth of how Thor’s famed hammer Mjolner was created.  He sings in the song’s lead verse, “In the realm of Svartalvheim/Where master forgers reign/Loke met with Eitri and Brokk/With malice and deceit/he got them to agree/to create nine magic gifts for the Asa Gods/Brokkr had a sense of foul play in the air/So he made a wager for Loke’s head/Treasures will be forged for the Asagods/A spear and a ring for the Asgard King/But finest of them all/the Crusher it is called/Mjolner, Hammer of Thor/Loke’s treachery knows no boundaries/he his himself in the blacksmith’s caveBut as work progressed, he feared he’d lose his bet/He knew his situation was now grave/Working the bellows/Heating the forge/Striking the anvil/Striking with force/Then as they worked/On the last gift/A mighty hammer of war/Loke disrupted the work of the blacksmiths/The handle came out short.”  From here, Hegg tells the rest of the ancient Norse tale with Loke meeting not a fatal fate, but a not-so-happy fate, nonetheless.  It is a powerful tale that will entertain and engage any listener, regardless of his or her familiarity with the story of how Mjolner was created – or any Norse mythology.  When it is coupled with the song’s accessible arrangement, the whole exhibits itself as one of the most notable additions to this latest offering from Amon Amarth.  It is just one of the songs that stands out in this offering.  The album’s finale, ‘Into The Dark’ is another way in which that growth and change is clearly evidenced.

‘Into The Dark’ presents what is perhaps one of the biggest shifts that Amon Amarth has ever taken in its now 25 year-plus life.  Whereas so many of its songs are straight-forward, driving metal works, this opus starts and ends with a gentle piano line.  That line is complimented with the addition of a group of string musicians to help set the song’s mood.  As the song opens, that pairing eventually fades away, making room for the band’s own elements.  What is interesting in this case is that the guitar-driven arrangement boasts a certain old school metal sound at times alongside the more modern sound that audiences have come to expect from the band.  The whole of these elements makes the arrangement in whole, one more of the album’s most intriguing additions.  It is yet more proof of the change and growth in the band’s sound.  It is just one way in which the song exhibits that growth and change.  The song’s lyrical content, believe it or not, actually shows a certain amount of growth and change, too.

The song’s lyrical content shows a certain level of change in that the only Norse element comes late in one of the verses in which Hegg sings, “I am who I am/I am Loke to you.”  The rest of the song comes across more as one of those familiar showings of introspection; thoughts of overcoming personal adversity.  That is obvious right from the song’s outset as Hegg sings, “There is a darkness in my soul/A darkness that can’t be tamed/A deep void of emptiness/A gaping wound/A vile, corrupted entity/That has no name/From the dark into the light/I make this journey on my own/From the dark into the light/I make this journey on my own/From the dark into the light/I must fight this darkness all alone.”  He goes on in the song’s second verse to sing, “I try to do what is right/And still my twisted mind is full of spite/Each day a struggle/With this side of me/A losing battle/I can’t break free/No!/I can’t break free…”  From here he goes on to sing of the “demons” dragging the subject back into despair.  There are even brief Norse notes in this discussion, about “Dagas my guide/But Thurisas bides.”  So yes, the familiar Viking content is there, but in the bigger picture, this song seems lyrically, to be something of a change for the band.  Yes, the content is familiar in its discussion about dealing with inner emotional turmoil, but it is still a discussion that will resonate easily with listeners.  On top of all of that, the very fact that the band would go to the length of limiting the Norse content in favor of seemingly something more standard shows, again, that growth and change from the band.  All of that change considered, this song is one of Berserker’s most notable compositions, showing where the band very well could be headed.  It shows in its own way that whether the band is performing familiar songs centered on Viking lore or working on something more mainstream, it succeeds.  It is just one more of the songs featured in this record that stands out.  ‘Fafner’s Gold,’ which opens the album, is another standout addition to the album.

‘Fafner’s Gold’ opens with an element that while familiar to many metal bands today, is another element that is unfamiliar to Amon Amarth – an acoustic guitar introduction.  Arch Enemy and so many other similar metal acts have used such an approach to their songs throughout their catalogues, but Amon Amarth has rarely if ever taken that approach.  That intro leads very quickly, into the band’s familiar shredding and machine-gun-fast time keeping in a whole that longtime Amon Amarth fans will recognize and appreciate.  The composition in whole is certain to keep listeners engaged and entertained, and is just one part of what will entertain and engage listeners.  The song’s lyrical content does just as much to maintain that interest.

The song’s lyrical content tells the myth of…well…Fafner’s gold.  In doing research on the song, it is found that Fafner is one of the giants who built Valhalla, the Norse afterlife realm.  Fafner was turned into a dragon, according to the myth, after killing his own brother Fasolt after the pair takes the treasure of the dwarf Alberich.  Fafner was ultimately killed by Siegfried. The Icelandic version of the tale, which the band seems to be following here, actually presents Fafner (Fafnir in this case) as a dwarf instead of a giant.  In this version, Regin sent his foster son Sigurd to kill Fafnir in his dragon form.  The whole story can be read here.  What is so interesting to learn in researching the song is the variants thereof.  There is the noted Icelandic version and a Germanic version as well as one other take on the tale.  The variants within each telling are minor, but are there.  This version however, involves the familiar Norse mythology, including the mention of Loke and other Norse figures.  It sticks to everything that the band has done throughout its life.  It also serves to illustrate Hegg’s comment about the band’s approach to the album in whole.  “The previous album was a concept album, but we didn’t want to get into a situation where every album has to be a concept record, so this is different.  We wanted to step away from that and look at being a little bit more diverse with the lyrics and everything else.”  When this latest bit of Norse mythology is coupled with its equally familiar musical styling, the whole proves to be yet another positive addition to Berserker.  When it is considered along with the other songs noted here and the nine remaining songs not directly discussed, the whole of the album becomes a work that Amon Amarth’s longtime fans will appreciate just as much as those who might not be so familiar with the band’s work.

Amon Amarth’s new album Berserker is everything that audiences have come to expect from the band.  It is also a slight display of growth and development from the band, as evidenced in the songs noted here.  Those songs, when considered along with the rest of the album’s works, make Berserker another successful offering from the “Kings” of Viking metal and one more of the year’s top new hard rock and metal albums.  The album is available now.  The band is now touring in support of the album, too.  The band’s tour includes a performance in Charlotte, NC on Oct. 15.  The band’s current tour schedule is available online now along with all of the band’s news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.amonamarth.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/amonamarthband

 

 

 

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.

Amon Amarth Debuts ‘Crack The Sky’ Video

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

Amon Amarth debuted the video for its latest single this week.

The band debuted the video for its new single ‘Crack The Sky‘ on Wednesday.  The video picks up where the video for the album’s lead single, ‘Raven’s Flight,’ left off. The crowd has officially entered the club where the band is performing, and the show is just as raucous as any Amon Amarth concert.

Of course the show has gotten a little more out of hand than expected as some otherworldly figures have invaded the concert and are causing some serious havoc.  Luckily, an expected hero is called in to help eliminate the unholy creatures.

 

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

‘Crack The Sky’ and ”Raven’s Flight’ are both taken from Amon Amarth’s forthcoming album Beserker. Beserker will be available on a variety of platforms, all of which are noted below. To pre-order Berserker, please visit amonamarth.lnk.to/berserker – where the album is available in the following formats:
–digipak-CD
–deluxe box set [digipak-CD, shield (~12″x12″), patch (~4″x4″) – limited to 500 copies in US]
–opaque white w/ black splatter vinyl (limited to 1200 copies)
–opaque white w/ silver haze vinyl (retail exclusive – limited to 1300 copies)
–clear w/ red splatter vinyl (webstore exclusive – limited to 750 copies)
–black w/ red haze vinyl (webstore exclusive – limited to 750 copies)

Beserker was recorded in Los Angeles, with Jay Ruston (Anthrax/Stone Sour) helming the project.  Front man Johann Hegg offered positive remarks about Beserker in a recent interview.

“For me, this is Amon Amarth 2.0,” Hegg said.  “I think what we’ve done here is given ourselves the spcae to explore other parts of our musicality and who we are as a band.  If you’re content with where you’re at, what’s the point in continuing?  We always want to come up with new ideas and find new ways and doing things, and to create bigger and better shows, and really try to improve every aspect of what the band is.  We want to try to keep growing and to do this for as long as we have the possibility to do so, because this is the best fucking job in the world.”

Beserker‘s full track listing is noted below.

Berserker track-listing
1. Fafner’s Gold
2. Crack the Sky
3. Mjölner, Hammer of Thor
4. Shield Wall
5. Valkyria
6. Raven’s Flight
7. Ironside
8. The Berserker at Stamford Bridge
9. When Once Again We Can Set Our Sails
10. Skoll and Hati
11. Wings of Eagles
12. Into the Dark

Amon Amarth will join Slayer, Lamb of God and Cannibal Corpse on the road in May for an almost month-long tour to help say farewell to Slayer while also promoting Beserker.  The band’s run is scheduled to start May 2 and run through May 25, and to feature performances in cities, such as Huntington, WV; Tampa, Fla and Phoenix, AZ.  the tour’s current schedule is noted below.

Slayer “Leg Five: North America” tour dates
w/Lamb of God, Amon Amarth, Cannibal Corpse

May 2 – Ak-Chin Amphitheatre – Phoenix, AZ
May 3 – Isleta Amphitheatre – Albuquerque, NM
May 5 – UTEP/Don Haskins Center – El Paso, TX
May 7 – Bert Ogden Arena – Edinburg, TX
May 8 – The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory – Dallas, TX
May 10 – MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre – Tampa, FL
May 11 – Coral Sky Amphitheatre – West Palm Beach, FL
May 13 – Big Sandy Superstore Arena – Huntington, WV
May 14 – Merriweasther Post Pavilion – Columbia, MD
May 16 – Ruoff Home Mortgage Music Center – Noblesville, IN
May 17 – Providence Medical Center Amphitheatre – Bonner Springs, KS
May 19 – DTE Energy Music Center – Clarkston, MI
May 20 – Covel Centre – Youngstown, OH
May 22 – Canadian Tire Centre – Ottawa, ON
May 24 – BB&T Pavilion – Camdel, NJ
May 25 – Xfinity Center – Mansfield, MA

More information on Amon Amarth’s upcoming tour, album and video is available online now at:

 

Websitehttp://www.amonamarth.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/AmonAmarth

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/amonamarthband

 

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.