Arch Enemy Gets Nihilistic In New Single, Video; Summer Festival Shows, European Tour Planned

Courtesy: Century Media

Veteran extreme metal outfit Arch Enemy opened the weekend with another single from its new album, along with the song’s video.

The band premiered its new single, ‘Sunset Over The Empire‘ and its video Thursday. The song is the fourth single from the band’s forthcoming album, Deceivers, which is scheduled for release July 29 through Century Media Records. The album has also produced the singles, ‘Handshake With Hell,’ Deceiver, Deceiver,’ and ‘House of Mirrors.’

Guitarist and principal songwriter Michael Amott talked about the song’s musical arrangement in a prepared statement.

“This is a faster song with some manic riffs and a relentless beat that I can envision becoming a ‘hit in the pit’!,” he said.

Amott’s description is correct. The machine gun fast beats within the solid time keeping work with the equally sharp work on the bass and guitars to form a powerful foundation for the arrangement. Vocalist Allysa Gluz’s screams are just as powerful as ever here, too.

The song’s lyrical theme is a cynical, nihilistic statement, according to Amott.

“Lyrically, it’s sadly one of those that seems to ring more true with each and every passing day nowadays,” he said. “Words turned to war, brother fighting brother, another false truce, as the people die.”

The song’s video features a young girl making her way through a post apocalyptic setting. At one point she is pursued by a drone. She escapes the drone, finding safety in an empty shed, where she pulls out a tablet and watches the band’s video within the very story. That alone makes for an interesting visual. At other points in the video, the girl sees a fallen Statute of Liberty, and even a furry friend who joins her.

Arch Enemy’s new album will release through a variety of platforms, all of which are noted below along with the album’s track listing.

Digital Album

Ltd. Deluxe 2LP+CD Artbook

hand-numbered limited edition with noble hot foil stamping

LP1: multi-colored vinyl (each design is unique)

LP2: picture vinyl with two bonus tracks & zoetrope effect

CD: album + two bonus tracks

12″ Artbook with 36-pages booklet incl. liner-notes and art print

 —Ltd. Deluxe CD Box Set

DVD-sized clamshell box with noble hot foil stamping

CD in eco-friendly packaging with two bonus tracks

32-page DIN A5 booklet incl. liner-notes

Tote Bag

Metal Pin

Ltd. Black & colored 180g LP

incl. 8-page booklet + Obi-Strip

 —Special Edition CD

eco-friendly packaging incl. 16-page booklet

Deceivers track-listing

1. Handshake With Hell

2. Deceiver, Deceiver

3. In The Eye Of The Storm

4. The Watcher

5. Poisoned Arrow

6. Sunset Over The Empire

7. House Of Mirrors

8. Spreading Black Wings

9. Mourning Star

10. One Last Time

11. Exiled From Earth

In other news, Arch Enemy has an extensive live schedule this summer and fall in support of Deceivers. The band’s tour schedule, which includes a handful of summer festival shows in August, is noted below.

Arch Enemy 2022 festival dates

Aug. 6, 2022 – Wacken, DE @ Wacken Open Air

Aug. 17-20, 2022 – Dinkelsbuehl, DE @ Summer Breeze Festival

Aug. 18-20, 2022 – Sulingen, DE @ Reload Festival

“The European Siege 2022” tour dates

w/ Arch Enemy & Behemoth

+ special guests Carcass, Unto Others

Sept. 27, 2022 – Dublin, IE @ Olympia Theatre

Sept. 29, 2022 – Glasgow, UK @ O2 Academy Glasgow

Sept. 30, 2022 – Manchester, UK @ O2 Apollo

Oct. 1, 2022 – Birmingham, UK @ O2 Academy Birmingham

Oct. 2, 2022 – London, UK @ O2 Academy Brixton

Oct. 4, 2022 – Paris, FR @ Le Zénith

Oct. 5, 2022 – Toulouse, FR @ Le Bikini

Oct. 7, 2022 – Lisbon, PT @ Coliseu de Lisboa

Oct. 8, 2022 – Madrid, ES @ Palacio Vistalegre

Oct. 9, 2022 – Barcelona, ES @ Palau Sant Jordi

Oct. 11, 2022 – Lyon, FR @ Le Radiant

Oct. 12, 2022 – Milano, IT @ Alcatraz

Oct. 14, 2022 – Berlin, DE @ Columbiahalle

Oct. 15, 2022 – Prague, CZ @ Tipsport Arena

Oct. 16, 2022 – Budapest, HU @ Barba Negra

Oct. 18, 2022 – Vienna, AT @ Gasometer

Oct. 19, 2022 – Katowice, PL @ Spodek

Oct. 21, 2022 – Ludwigsburg, DE @ MHP Arena

Oct. 22, 2022 – Den Bosch, NL @ Mainstage Brabanthallen

Oct. 23, 2022 – Brussels, BE @ Forest National

Oct. 25, 2022 – Zurich, CH @ Samsung Hall

Oct. 26, 2022 – Frankfurt, DE @ Jahrhunderthalle

Oct. 28, 2022 – Munich, DE @ Zenith

Oct. 29, 2022 – Düsseldorf, DE @ Mitsubishi Electric Halle

Oct. 30, 2022 – Hamburg, DE @ edel-optics.de Arena

Oct. 31, 2022 – Gothenburg, SE @ Partille Arena

Nov. 2, 2022 – Helsinki, FI @ Ice Hall

Nov. 4, 2022 – Stockholm, SE @ Annexet

Nov. 5, 2022 – Copenhagen, DK @ Forum

Nov. 6, 2022 – Oslo, NO @ Sentrum Scene

More information on Arch Enemy’s new album and tour is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttps://www.archenemy.net

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/archenemyofficial

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/archenemymetal

To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to https://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.

Annihilator Debuts ‘Couple Suicide’ Lyric Video

Courtesy: earMusic

Annihilator premiered the video for its latest single this week.

The band premiered the lyric video for its single, ‘Couple Suicide’ Thursday. The song is featured in the band’s new album, Metal II, which is a re-issue of the band’s 2007 album, Metal. The song is the third single from the re-issue behind the newly added cover of Van Halen’s ‘Romeo Delight‘ and ‘Downright Dominate.’

The re-mastered take of ‘Couple Suicide’ features guest appearances from Angela Gossow (ex-Arch Enemy) and Danko Jones.

‘Couple Suicide’ and its lyric video are meant to tell the story of a couple that is on the verge of its end, but still has one last chance to survive, according to information presented in the press release announcing the video’s premiere. The video features the song’s lyrics over images of couples in their happy and not so happy moments as the song plays over the visualization.

The musical arrangement featured in the song is a unique presentation. It incorporates elements of 80s hair metal with late 80s/early 90s thrash a la Anthrax for its overall presentation. It makes for plenty of engagement and entertainment in its own right.

Metal II is available now through earMUsic. More information on Annihilator’s new album is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttps://www.annihilatormetal.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/annihilatorband

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/annihilatorband

To keep up with the latest entertainment reviews and news, go online to https://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.

Arch Enemy Reveals New LP’s Cover Art, Track Listing; New Single Coming Next Week

Courtesy: Breaking The Law PR

The picture is getting clearer for Arch Enemy’s new album.

The band unveiled the cover art and track listing for Deceivers Thursday. The cover art looks like a reflection of the masks that are so commonly associated with the world of theater, just with a dark twist. The album’s track listing is noted below.

Deceivers track-listing

1. Handshake With Hell

2. Deceiver, Deceiver

3. In The Eye Of The Storm

4. The Watcher

5. Poisoned Arrow

6. Sunset Over The Empire

7. House Of Mirrors

8. Spreading Black Wings

9. Mourning Star

10. One Last Time

11. Exiled From Earth

Deceivers has already produced the singles, ‘Deceiver, Deceiver‘ and ‘House of Mirrors.’ The album’s third single, ‘Handshake With Hell,’ is scheduled for release next week.

Guitarist Michael Amott said fans will find much to like about Arch Enemy’s new album.

“Having just celebrated our 25th anniversary as a group and now releasing our 11th studio album, one could easily assume that we would be cruising along and going through the motions at this point,” he said. “In reality, nothing could be further from the truth when it comes to Arch Enemy and our new album, Deceivers. It is without a doubt always a challenge to raise the bar each time in both the songwriting and production side of things, and it can feel a bit daunting before we get into it, but once we do get started and fully immerse ourselves in the creative process, it’s really like there is nothing else in the world and we are very focused.”

“Added Amott. “Believe it or not, for the most part, we have a ton of fun making this music! Creating Deceivers was no different, once again we shut out the outside world and went deep into the artistic zone. I believe we pulled out some really interesting musical and lyrical themes this time, a few things might even raise an eyebrow or two – while retaining all the signature elements of the band. In the end, it’s Arch Enemy at full speed and power!”

In other news, Arch Enemy is scheduled to tour alongside Behemoth this year in support of Deceivers. The first leg of the world tour is scheduled to launch April 16 in Tempe, AZ and to run through May 15 in Los Angeles, CA. The second leg is scheduled to launch Sept. 27 in Dublin, IE and to run through Nov. 6 in Oslo, NO. Between the two legs, the band has a handful of festival shows planned between Aug. 6 and 20.

The schedule for Arch Enemy’s upcoming tour is noted below.

“The North American Siege 2022” tour dates

w/ Arch Enemy & Behemoth

+ special guests Napalm Death, Unto Others

Apr. 16, 2022 – Tempe, AZ @ Marquee Theatre 

Apr. 18, 2022 – San Antonio, TX @ The Aztec Theatre 

Apr. 19, 2022 – Dallas, TX @ Amplified Live 

Apr. 21, 2022 – St Petersburg, FL @ Jannus Live 

Apr. 22, 2022 – Atlanta, GA @ The Eastern 

Apr. 23, 2022 – Charlotte. NC @ The Fillmore Charlotte 

Apr. 25, 2022 – Toronto, ON @ Rebel 

Apr. 26, 2022 – Montreal, QC @ Mtelus 

Apr. 28, 2022 – New York, NY @ Terminal 5 

Apr. 29, 2022 – Philadelphia, PA @ The Fillmore Philadelphia 

Apr. 30, 2022 – Worcester, MA @ Palladium 

May 2, 2022 – Chicago, IL @ The Riviera Theatre 

May 4, 2022 – Denver, CO @ Ogden Theatre 

May 7, 2022 – Salt Lake City, UT @ The Depot 

May 9, 2022 – Seattle, WA @ Showbox SoDo 

May 10, 2022 – Vancouver, BC @ Vogue Theatre 

May 11, 2022 – Portland, OR @ Roseland Theater 

May 13, 2022 – Berkeley, CA @ The UC Theatre 

May 15, 2022 – Los Angeles, CA @ The Hollywood Palladium

Arch Enemy 2022 festival dates

Aug. 6, 2022 – Wacken, DE @ Wacken Open Air

Aug. 17-20, 2022 – Dinkelsbuehl, DE @ Summer Breeze Festival

Aug. 18-20, 2022 – Sulingen, DE @ Reload Festival

“The European Siege 2022” tour dates

w/ Arch Enemy & Behemoth

+ special guests Carcass, Unto Others

Sept. 27, 2022 – Dublin, IE @ Olympia Theatre

Sept. 29, 2022 – Glasgow, UK @ O2 Academy Glasgow

Sept. 30, 2022 – Manchester, UK @ O2 Apollo

Oct. 1, 2022 – Birmingham, UK @ O2 Academy Birmingham

Oct. 2, 2022 – London, UK @ O2 Academy Brixton

Oct. 4, 2022 – Paris, FR @ Le Zénith

Oct. 5, 2022 – Toulouse, FR @ Le Bikini

Oct. 7, 2022 – Lisbon, PT @ Coliseu de Lisboa

Oct. 8, 2022 – Madrid, ES @ Palacio Vistalegre

Oct. 9, 2022 – Barcelona, ES @ Palau Sant Jordi

Oct. 11, 2022 – Lyon, FR @ Le Radiant

Oct. 12, 2022 – Milano, IT @ Alcatraz

Oct. 14, 2022 – Berlin, DE @ Columbiahalle

Oct. 15, 2022 – Prague, CZ @ Tipsport Arena

Oct. 16, 2022 – Budapest, HU @ Barba Negra

Oct. 18, 2022 – Vienna, AT @ Gasometer

Oct. 19, 2022 – Katowice, PL @ Spodek

Oct. 21, 2022 – Ludwigsburg, DE @ MHP Arena

Oct. 22, 2022 – Den Bosch, NL @ Mainstage Brabanthallen

Oct. 23, 2022 – Brussels, BE @ Forest National

Oct. 25, 2022 – Zurich, CH @ Samsung Hall

Oct. 26, 2022 – Frankfurt, DE @ Jahrhunderthalle

Oct. 28, 2022 – Munich, DE @ Zenith

Oct. 29, 2022 – Düsseldorf, DE @ Mitsubishi Electric Halle

Oct. 30, 2022 – Hamburg, DE @ edel-optics.de Arena

Oct. 31, 2022 – Gothenburg, SE @ Partille Arena

Nov. 2, 2022 – Helsinki, FI @ Ice Hall

Nov. 4, 2022 – Stockholm, SE @ Annexet

Nov. 5, 2022 – Copenhagen, DK @ Forum

Nov. 6, 2022 – Oslo, NO @ Sentrum Scene

More information on Arch Enemy’s new album and tour is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Website: https://www.archenemy.net

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/archenemyofficial

Twitter: https://twitter.com/archenemymetal

To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to https://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.

Skarlett Riot Continues Carving Out Its Place In The Metal Community On Its Latest LP

Courtesy: Despotz Records

Independent metal band Skarlett Riot has been in existence for approximately 11 years, but in that short span, the band has done quite a bit to build its name and audience base.  The band, which formed in 2010, has released a total of six studio recordings – three EPs and three albums – with the latest of the albums – Invicta – released in May through Despotz Records.  The band’s latest offering is a positive new record that most metal fans will appreciate.  That is due in large part to its featured lyrical themes.  They will be discussed shortly.  The musical arrangements that accompany the record’s lyrical themes add their own touch to the presentation and will be discussed a little later.  The sequencing of that collective content rounds out the most important of the album’s elements.  Each item noted is important in its own way to the whole of the album’s presentation.  All things considered, they make Invicta a largely appealing new addition to this year’s field of new hard rock and metal albums.

Skarlett Riot’s third full-length studio recording, Invicta, is a positive new offering from the up-and-coming metal outfit.  It is a presentation that will appeal to most hard rock and metal fans.  That is proven in part through its featured lyrical themes.  The themes in question are accessible, touching in various ways on the topic of overcoming life’s obstacles, and in other ways, on dealing with the impact of toxic relationships.  Right from the album’s outset, ‘Breaking The Habit,’ one of those noted obstacles is seemingly addressed.  In this case, the obstacle in question seems to be that of addiction.  This is inferred as front woman Chloe “Skarlett” Drinkwater sings right in the song’s lead verse and chorus, “I am completely obsessed/Can’t stop thinking like this/Can’t resist to feed this darkness in me/I let myself progress/Into nothing but this mess/This is not a life/I can’t take no more/I’m so frustrated/I’ve become so jaded/I’ve lost my self control/I feel so far from home/So alone.”  Little if any doubt is left even this early on about the seemingly noted theme here.  This comes across as someone who is battling their addiction hard.  At the same time, that determination to overcome this obstacle is present in the song’s second verse, in which Drinkwater sings, “I will learn to live again/There must be a way/The only one who can save me is me/I’m my own worst enemy/I will find my voice/This hidden strength in me/Try to get away/I used to feel so free.”  Again, what audiences get here is that noted drive to get past the obstacle of addiction.  It is a unique way to address the topic that is easily accessible, proving in itself why the album’s lyrical content is so important to its presentation.  The matter of overcoming obstacles is presented in a different but equally accessible fashion later in the album’s 48-minute run in the form of ‘To The Flames.’

‘To The Flames’ is a collective call to unity; to unite and basically march on against any of life’s obstacles.  This is made one hundred percent clear as Drinkwater sings in the song’s chorus, “We ascend to the top/Give all that we got/If we fall to the flames/We rise up/Come on try me/I’m burning bright/We fight to be heard/We ignite.”  She adds in the song’s bridge, “We won’t be ignored/We won’t hear your toxic words/They feed off our misery/Sucking the life outta me/We won’t be ignored.”  The calls to unity continue just as clearly throughout the song’s verses.  When they are paired with the statements in the song’s chorus and bridge, the overall uplifting message proves that it will resonate with audiences just as much as any of the album’s other noted themes.

Speaking of those other themes, that of a toxic relationship and its impact is addressed in ‘Underwater.’  What is interesting here is the duality in the vulnerability shown here alongside the anger and power expressed alongside that vulnerability.  On the one hand, Drinkwater sings so mournfully, “You crushed me/Tore me apart/Ripped my soul/Now I can’t trust no one/So here I am again/Cannot seem to find a way out/I am drowning/Can you hear me/Underwater.”  This statement shows that vulnerability; that sadness and pain.  On the other side, the anger that stems from whatever happened is made just as clear as Drinkwater screams, “I hope you bleed/’Cause no one will bleed for you/I hope you burn/You will go straight to hell.”  She repeats these lines multiple times in the song’s bridge, really illustrating a lot of pent up rage from whatever led to the situation in which the subject is “drowning.”  That anger is in itself, a way of overcoming the obstacle that was that toxic relationship/situation.  To that end, it is another example of the importance of the album’s lyrical content.  It shows the different topics and ways in which the more common themes are approached and presented.  When that is considered in examining the rest of the album’s songs, the whole makes clear why the album’s lyrical content is so important to its presentation.  It is just one part of what makes the album worth hearing.  The musical arrangements that accompany the album’s lyrical themes play their own important part in the album’s presentation.

The musical arrangements that are exhibited in Invicta are important to examine because they all present a similar sound and stylistic approach from one song to the next.  The heavy, crunching guitars alongside the equally strong bass line and percussion pair with Drinkwater’s vocals to create a sound and style throughout the record that makes this record comparable to works from the likes of Helion Prime, Unleash The Archers, and even Arch Enemy to a point.  The arrangements do boast some subtle variations from one to the next.  A close listen reveals those subtle variations.  In hearing those variations, audiences will also catch the similarity to Skarlett Riot’s other works, and hear the similarities and variations.  Hearing and understanding it all makes for even more appreciation for the album.  When the impact of the album’s musical arrangements is paired with that of the album’s lyrical themes, the whole makes the album even more worth hearing.  Even with all of this in mind, the album still has one more item to examine, that being the sequencing of said content.

Invicta’s sequencing is important to consider because of its role in keeping audiences engaged and entertained.  From beginning to end, the record’s sequencing keeps the album’s energy high throughout.  The only point at which the album slows things down comes more than halfway through in ‘Into Pieces.’  Even in this song though, the more subdued approach lasts only a certain amount of time before the band kicks things back into high gear again.  From there on, the album keeps the energy high right up until its final bars.  That in itself is sure to keep audiences listening.  Along with that is the aforementioned constant variation in the arrangements.  The variations keep the arrangements unique of one another throughout the album, thus enhancing the listening experience even more.  The sequencing also ensures that the album’s lyrical themes change just enough from one to the next.  The result of that alongside everything else associated with the sequencing is a presentation that will appeal to audiences just as much as the album’s content.  Everything considered together, the album proves itself to be a presentation that will appeal just as much to Skarlett Riot’s fans as to most metal audiences in general.

Skarlett Riot’s latest album, Invicta is a strong new offering from the up-and-coming metal band.  It is a record that serves to further etch out a place in the metal community for the band just as much as the band’s existing catalog.  That is proven in part through its lyrical themes.  The themes in question are mostly uplifting works that encourage listeners to push on through life’s obstacles.  They also help people who have gone through or are going through difficult relationships of any kind get through those situations.  The musical arrangements work with the lyrical themes to add their own touch to the album.  That is because the way in which they balance the band’s power metal and pure metal influences throughout.  The variations in the arrangements do well to balance those influences and keep listeners engaged and entertained.  The sequencing of that collective content ensures that it works to keep that engagement and entertainment high, too.  That is proven through the changes in the themes from one song to the next, the stability in the album’s energy and the changes in the arrangements.  Each item noted is important in its own way to the whole of this record.  All things considered, they make Invicta a positive new sign for Skarlett Riot’s growing place in the metal community.  Invicta is available now.  More information on Invicta is available along with all of Skarlett Riot’s latest news at:

Website: https://skarlettriot.co.uk

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/skarlettriotuk

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SkarlettRiot

To keep up with the latest entertainment reviews and news, go online to https://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.  

‘Ascension’ Is A Strong Start For Paladin

Courtesy: Prosthetic Records

Up-and-coming metal outfit Paladin has kept busy this year.  The band opened the year with the release of its three song EP Anamnesis.  The band’s second-ever studio recording, it is a tribute to Nevermore.  Its release was followed by a short live run before COVID-19 started spreading across America.  The band did not let the virus’ spread stop the music though, instead performing through a series of livestream events.  As the old year bids farewell and the new year nears, the band recently announced that it is in the running to take part in another livestream event with other acts in the ‘iVoted Festival.”  The festival, which started during the 2018 midterm election, is a way to encourage voters in Georgia to get involved in the state’s two Senate races that will determine control of the senate at the federal level.  Audiences can vote for the band to take part in the festival now here.  Audiences who need convincing to vote for Paladin need only listen to the band’s 2019 debut album Ascension to make the decision.  The 11-song record is a presentation that will appeal widely among the metal masses.  That is proven equally through the album’s musical and lyrical content. ‘Carpe Diem,’ which comes early in the album’s run does well to support the noted statements.  It will be discussed shortly.  ‘Shoot For The Sun’ also serves to show what makes Ascension such a strong debut from Paladin.  It will be discussed a little later.  ‘Genesis,’ which closes out the album, is one more way in which the record proves its appeal to so many in the metal masses.  When it is considered along with the songs noted here and the rest of the album’s works, the whole makes Ascension easy proof of why audiences should vote for Paladin in the “iVoted Festival.”

Paladin’s 2019 debut album Ascension is a powerful debut for the band, an convincing proof of why this up-and-coming metal outfit deserves to take part in this year’s livestream “iVoted Festival.”  The album’s musical and lyrical content go a long way to support the noted statements.  ‘Carpe Diem,’ which comes early in the album’s 49-minute run, is just one of the songs that serves to support the noted statement.  The song’s musical arrangement is a full-on vintage thrash style composition.  Its solid time keeping, equally powerful mix of death metal screams and power metal clean vocals pairs with the equally powerful guitar riffs to make the song in whole one of the album’s most notable works.  The death metal screams and guitar riffs lend themselves to comparisons to works from the likes of Arch Enemy while the clean vocals lend themselves to comparisons to works from Judas Priest.  The balance in those two sides makes for so much entertainment and engagement.  It ensures its appeal to a wide range of audiences.  When the song’s powerful musical arrangement is considered with the song’s lyrical content, which is powerful in its own right, the song in whole develops even more interest.

The lyrical content featured in ‘Carpe Diem’ comes across as in fact encouraging audiences to indeed seize the day.  It opens with the lead verse stating, “Uncertain feelings coming through/The life you thought you always knew/Now seems so lost and far away/Time passing cannot be undone/Future and past become as one/No looking back, no backing down/This time around, this time around.”  The chorus adds to the positive sense in the song’s lyrical content, stating, “One desire, soaring higher, oh/Now it’s time for you to take the reins/Fall harder, reaching farther/You’ve so much left to gain/The prize is worth the pain.”  The song’s second verse solidifies the noted message of positivity, stating, “Lost in an existential haze/Trapped in oneself, an endless maze/Anxiety imprisoning my soul/Seeking the path I know exists/In search of truth, I must persist/A voice calls out from deep within/To take control is to begin.”  All things considered here, these lyrics are certain to connect with listeners.  When they are paired with the song’s equally accessible musical arrangement, the whole of the song proves in its own way why Ascension is such a strong start for the band.  It is just one of the songs that serves to make the album a success.  ‘Shoot For The Sun’ is another way in which the album proves its strength.

‘Shoot For The Sun’ presents a musical arrangement that is best described as presenting a stylistic approach and sound that is one part prog metal and one part classic rock.  It conjures thoughts of Liquid Tension Experiment on one hand, and of vintage Metallica and Motorhead on the other.  That juxtaposition and joining of sounds and styles makes for so much enjoyment an engagement in this full-on fist-pumper.  Right down to the solos, the song offers metal fans across the board something to enjoy.  When the power and energy exuded in the song’s musical arrangement is paired with its positive lyrical theme, the whole of the song becomes that much more enjoyable.

As is the case with ‘Carpe Diem,’ ‘Shoot For The Sun’ offers audiences another positive message of self-determination and confidence.  That is inferred in the song’s lead verse, which states, “You wanna know what it means to see/Just look around and let yourself be free/Set the world in your sights, we’ll prove it tonight/You’ve got a vision burning in your head/White hot, one shot, the prayer’s been said/Pull the trigger now, we’ll make it somehow.”  The song’s chorus adds to the seeming statement as it states, “There’s just no more I can take/It’s all building up, I refuse to break/There’s just no more I can bear/When everything’s all said and done/Shoot for the sun.”  That positive encouragement carries on through the song’s second verse, solidifying the message as it states, “You wanna know what it’s like to fly/Just spread your wings and you’ll touch the sky/No reason to wait, no time left to waste/You think you know how it all plays out/No one can save you from your own doubt/Feel the light that starts to shine/As it clears the heavy thoughts that cloud your mind/That cloud your mind, yeah, yeah, oh.”  Again, this comes across as a very positive message that any listener will welcome.  When it is considered with the composition’s equally enjoyable musical arrangement, the result is yet another work that will appeal to plenty of audiences.  Together with the whole of ‘Carpe Diem,’ the two songs collectively show even more why the album in whole is a success, too.  They are just a portion of what makes the album well worth hearing, too.  ‘Genesis’ is one more example of why audiences will enjoy Ascension.

‘Genesis’ presents a musical arrangement that is another full-on wall of sound metal presentation.  The dual guitar attack and guttural vocals pair with the seamless time keeping and bass work to make for its own share of engagement and entertainment.  The clean vocals are a near musical mirror image of those of Judas Priest front man Rob Halford.  The contrast of that sound to the screams joins with the full-on metal arrangement to make the song in whole even more appealing for audiences.  When it is considered along with the song’s unique lyrical content, the song becomes even more intriguing.

The lyrical content featured in ‘Genesis’ seems to come across as a sort of fantasy story.  It comes across as telling the story of a person’s story of growth and development.  It is sort of an existential type of story, which opens with the song’s subject stating, “The silent scream of the conscience of man/As we are brought to sentience/Given dominion over the sea and land/To rule as we see fit.”  That seeming story of development continues in the song’s chorus, which states, “The perfect form, born from the perfect image/We are the chosen/Yet as we prosper and we create/We yearn to know.”  The subject continues his discussion by noting where society has been and where it is going.  He states, “Thousands of years of progress/In search of a higher purpose/Unanswered questions to forces unknown/Our pleas are met with silence/And so we wander, blind to the way/Alone, abandoned and betrayed/Our stricken minds now led astray/Astray.”  Things continue from here, with the subject even pleading to the “Almighty one/Bringer of the winds and rain” for clarity on things.  That higher power responds, telling the song’s subject that “Even as your knowledge grows, your minds will never know/What lies beyond this world before it’s your time.”  Simply put, the song’s subject is every one of us.  We have all reached that point in which we ask what is the purpose in life and where are we going.  The reality is that we will never really know and that we are better off just living life and living it to the best that we can.  The whole of the story makes for a powerful addition to Ascension and yet another way in which the album is proven a success.  When it is considered along with the other songs noted here and the rest of the album’s works, the result is an album that proves without question, to be a powerful debut from Paladin.  To that end, the album is its own proof of why Paladin deserves to take part in this year’s “iVoted Festival.”

Paladin’s debut album Ascension is a powerful first outing for the band.  The 11-song album is a presentation that will appeal widely to the metal masses.  That is proven equally through the album’s musical and lyrical content as noted here.  Its musical arrangements combine the best elements of prog metal, thrash, and even power metal for a whole that will bring the noted fans together.  The album’s lyrical content ranges from easily accessible to much deeper, as noted here.  All things considered, the album in whole proves that given the right support, Paladin could be one of the next big names in the metal community.  That support starts with voting for the band in the upcoming “iVoted Festival.”  More information on Ascension is available along with all of Paladin’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://paladinatl.bandcamp.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/paladinatl

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/PaladinATL

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.

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.

Amaranthe, Angela Gossow Partner For New Single, ‘Do Or Die’

Courtesy: Nuclear Blast Records

Amaranthe has partnered with former Arch Enemy vocalist Angela Gossow to send a warning to the world about its current state.

The group debuted the video for the song ‘Do or Die‘ Friday.  The video features Gossow and the members of Amaranthe in a post-apocalyptic world that is filled with pollution and garbage, collecting what can only be assumed to be the skeletons of the world’s former inhabitants killed by the impact of climate change.

The song’s musical arrangement features Amaranthe’s familiar melodic, orchestral metal sound alongside Gossow’s equally familiar gutteral vocal delivery.  The song’s lyrical content is meant as a statement about what humans are doing to the planet.

Amaranthe guitarist Olo Morck discussed that lyrical theme in a recent interview.

“While Amaranthe’s music is often uplifting, energetic and positive, sooner or later everyone needs to deal with the obvious fact that the world is literally crumbling around us — and it is crumbling fast, thanks to the short-sighted abuse of our common Mother Earth!,” he said.  “We talked to legendary Angela Gossow of Arch Enemy fame to do an entire package of a video and a song, outside of any normal album cycle, and let our different perspectives on metal collide in a massive explosion; and it resulted in ‘Do Or Die’!”  together with Overbeck Media, who shot the video, we delivered something really quite special, and Angela brings in a fresh strength to the trademark Amaranthe sound that is sure to resound all across the metal world!  Death and Fire!!!”

Gossow offered her own remarks about taking part in the video shoot.

“It was thrilling to join Amaranthe for a more extreme track and shooting a cutting edge video for it!,” she said.  “This is no cozy studio performance, but real ice cold winds, sewages, cadavers and pouring rain — the reality we live in, the devastating legacy we leave to our future generations.  Time to wake up, turn — and bang — some heads!  Watch out for these guys and killer lady.  They are going to crush you this year with a new album and some heavy touring!!!”

‘Do Or Die’ is available to stream and download here.  The song’s debut comes more than a month after the band debuted the video for its cover of Sabaton’s song ‘82nd All The Way.’

Amaranthe is wrapping the latest leg of its tour with Sabaton.  The bands’ current tour winds down Sunday.

The band will take part in a series of festivals this summer across Europe.  Its festival schedule opens June 4 at the Sweden Rock Festival and runs through Aug. 31 at the Rock in the City Festival.

An extensive North American headlining tour is also on tap for Amaranthe this summer, with support from Battle Beast and Seven Spires.  The band’s North American tour is scheduled to launch Aug. 20 in Baltimore, MD and to run through Oct. 2 in Cincinnati, OH.  It features performances in cities, such as Portland, OR; Tempe, AZ and Philadelphia, PA.

Amaranthe’s upcoming live dates are all noted below.  Tickets for the band’s North American dates are available here.

 

 

AMARANTHE EUROPEAN FESTIVAL SHOWS

04.06. S Sölvesborg – Sweden Rock Festival *NEW*
05. – 07.06. D Nürburg – Rock am Ring *NEW*
05. – 07.06. D Nuremberg – Rock im Park *NEW*
05. – 07.06. FIN Tampere – Rockfest *NEW*
13.06. SK Prešov – Dobry Festival
24./25.07. FIN Oulu – Qstock *NEW*
30.07. – 01.08. FIN Kuopio – Kuopiorock *NEW*
31.08. FIN Lappeenranta – Rock In The City *NEW*
05. – 08.08. S Falun – Sabaton Open Air *NEW*

North American Tour 2020
with BATTLE BEAST and SEVEN SPIRE:
08/20/2020  Soundstage – Baltimore, MD
08/21/2020  The Palladium (MA) – Worcester, MA
08/22/2020  The Gramercy Theatre – New York, NY
08/23/2020  Theatre Of Living Arts – Philadelphia, PA
08/25/2020  Club Soda – Montreal, QC
08/26/2020  Imperial de Quebec – Quebec City, QC
08/27/2020  Mavericks – Ottawa, ON
08/28/2020  MOD Club  – Toronto, ON
08/29/2020  The Eclectic Room –  Angola, IN
08/30/2020  Token Lounge –  Westland, MI
09/01/2020  Concord Music Hall –  Chicago, IL
09/02/2020  Apollo Theater – Belvidere, IL
09/03/2020  Wooly’s – Des Moines, IA
09/04/2020  The Cabooze – Minneapolis, MN
09/05/2020  Park Theatre – Winnipeg, MB
09/06/2020  The Exchange – Regina, SK
09/08/2020  The Starlite Room – Edmonton, AB
09/09/2020  Dickens – Calgary, AB
09/11/2020  The Venue – Vancouver, BC
09/12/2020   El Corazon – Seattle, WA
09/13/2020  Hawthorne Theatre – Portland, OR
09/14/2020  Holy Diver – Sacramento, CA
09/15/2020  Brick by Brick – San Diego, CA
09/16/2020  Whisky a Go Go – West Hollywood, CA
09/18/2020  Club Red – Tempe, AZ
09/19/2020  Backstage Bar and Billiards – Las Vegas, NV
09/20/2020  Liquid Joe’s – Salt Lake City, UT
09/21/2020  Bluebird Theater – Denver, CO
09/23/2020  Trees – Dallas, TX
09/24/2020  Come and Take it Live – Austin, TX
09/25/2020. Scout Bar – Houston, TX
09/26/2020  House of Blues – New Orleans, LA
09/27/2020  House of Blues – Lake Buena Vista, FL
09/29/2020  Rt 20 – Racine, WI
09/30/2020  The Crafthouse – Pittsburgh, PA
10/01/2020  The Underground – Charlotte, NC
10/02/2020  Riverfront Live – Cincinnati, OH

 

 

More information on Amaranthe’s upcoming live dates, its new video and more is available online at:

 

Websitehttp://www.amaranthe.se

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/AmarantheBand

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/amaranthemetal

 

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.

 

 

Disciples Of Verity Debuts ‘Worthy’ Lyric Video

Hard rock/metal outfit Disciples of Verity debuted the video for its new single this week.

The band — Corey Glover (Living Colour, Bowie Experience), George Pond (ex-Negative Sky), Danny Puma (Negative Sky) Corey Pierce (ex-God Forbid) and Mark Monjoy (Sekond Skyn) — released the lyric video for their song ‘Worthy’ Thursday through Revolver magazine.

The song is the lead single from the group’s forthcoming album Pragmatic Sanction, which is scheduled for release later this year through The Label Group and INgrooves. The album’s exact release date will be announced soon.  Pre-orders are open now.

‘Worthy’ features guest guitar work by Jeff Loomis (Arch Enemy, Nevermore).  Loomis’ Nevermore influences are clear in this song alongside Glover’s vocals.  Glover said in a recent interview, the song is lyrically a work that presents a message of overcoming feelings of personal adversity.

“No matter what you’re going through as long as you’re breathing and still here to see another day, it is another chance,” he said.  “Being worthy though, that is the rub you are always trying to figure out.  The heart and mind play against each other.  Your mind says you aren’t good enough, but your heart knows you are worthy.  That said, I am here for a reason.  I am ‘WORTHY!'”

Courtesy: The Label Group/INgrooves/TAG Publicity

More information on Disciples of Verity and the band’s new lyric video is available online now at http://www.facebook.com/Disciplesofverity.

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.

Project 86 “Among” Rock and Metal’s Best On Phil’s Picks 2017 Top New Hard Rock & Metal Albums

Courtesy: Project 86/TAG Publicity

For those about to rock, we salute you!

Yes, everyone knows that phrase from AC/DC’s classic song by the same name.  As popular as it is, it is more than just a song lyric and title.  It is a statement of honor for the acts and audiences who span the rock community.  This year, as with every year prior, there are so many bands to honor as the year nears its end, including hard rock and metal bands.  In case it hasn’t become clear by now, this article focuses on this critic’s choices for the year’s top new hard rock and metal albums.  As with every list before, compiling it was not an easy task.  New releases from Project 86, Arch Enemy, Iced Earth, and so many others made this year’s field of new hard rock and metal albums very crowded.  That is putting it lightly.  Between well-known mainstream acts and their lesser-known independent counterparts, the two sides collectively offered so many impressive new albums.

Topping this critic’s list of the year’s top new hard rock and metal albums is Project 86’s latest album Sheep Among Wolves.  The band’s 10th full-length studio recording in 20 years, this record takes all of the best elements of the band’s past — both musically and lyrically — and uses them to craft a work that is just as memorable and engaging as its predecessors.  Also on this year’s list from Phil’s Picks are new albums from — as already noted — Iced Earth and Arch Enemy — as well as new offerings from Overkill, Act of Defiance, Prong, Adrenaline Mob, Blacktop Mojo and others. As with every list, this list presents this critic’s Top 10 titles plus five additional titles for a total of 15 records.  That being noted, here for you is Phil’s Picks’ 2017 Top 10 New Hard Rock & Metal Albums.

PHIL’S PICKS 2017 TOP 10 NEW HARD ROCK & METAL ALBUMS

  1. Project 86 — Sheep Among Wolves
  2. Prong — Zero Days
  3. Act of Defiance — Old Scars, New Wounds
  4. Overkill — The Grinding Wheel
  5. Iced Earth — Incorruptable
  6. Blacktop Mojo — Burn The Ships
  7. Adrenaline Mob — We The People
  8. Marty Friedman — Wall of Sound
  9. Corroded — Defcon Zero
  10. Dragonforce — Reaching Into Infinity
  11. The Haunted — Strength In Numbers
  12. Doyle — As We Die
  13. Demon Hunter — Outlive
  14. 36 Crazyfists — Lanterns
  15. Arch Enemy — Will To Power

That’s all for this list.  Again, it was not an easy list to compile.  Acts the likes of Eve To Eve to Adam, Marty Friedman, Sepultura, Annihilator, Mastodon and so many others all deserve their own share of credit.  With that in mind, it becomes easy to see why no disrespect was meant to any one act or another here.  Every noted act released its own impressive album.  Only so many spaces were available, sadly.

2018 is already shaping up to be an interesting year in its own right, with new material from Ministry on the way alongside new albums from Judas Priest, Saxon, Machine Head, Corrosion of Conformity, Tool, Clutch and lots more.  Stay tuned for all of that in the new year.  To keep up with all of 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.