Upon A Burning Body’s New EP Is Will Continue To “Build” The Band’s Name And Reputation

Courtesy: Seek & Strike

Hard rock band Upon a Burning Body is, it would seem, one of the hardest working bands in the hard rock community today.  Having formed approximately 15 years ago (which is not that long ago in music industry years), the band has released five albums and one EP.  The longest stretch that the band has gone between new albums is three years, which came between the band’s fourth album Straight From the Barrio (2016) and its fifth album Southern Hostility (2019).  Each of those albums has enjoyed its own level of success in terms of charting.  The band shortened its time between new records again this week with the release of its second ever EP Built From War.  The five-song record was released Friday through Seek & Strike Records – its second studio recording for the independent label.  The 17-minute record is a work that the band’s established fan base will appreciate jut as much as metalcore and metal fans in general.  That is thanks to its musical and lyrical content, as is evidenced in part by the EP’s first two songs, ‘5X3’ and ‘Built From War.’  Each song will be addressed here, along with the EP’s penultimate song ‘Living for the Weekend.’  All three songs do their own part to make this record work as well as it does.  When they are considered with the EP’s two remaining songs — ‘Chains of Agony’ and ‘Extermination’ – the whole makes Built From War an EP that is built for success.

Upon A Burning Body’s latest studio recording Built From War is a strong new offering from the band, which has already made quite the impact on the metal community in such a short time.  That is due to its musical and lyrical content, each of which is accessible in its own way.  The EP’s opener, ‘5X3’ is just one of the songs that serves to support the noted statements.  This song’s arrangement is a full-on assault on the ears, but in the best way possible.  It is a blues-infused heavy metal opus that wastes no time grabbing listeners by the ear with its heavy, driving guitars, time-keeping, vocals and bass.  The immediate thought that comes to mind in listening to the song’s musical arrangement is a work that takes the best elements of Hatebreed and Lamb of God and combines them into one whole for a work that will keep listeners’ adrenaline peaked.  That adrenaline is heightened through the social commentary that is clearly presented through the song’s lyrical content.

The social commentary in question is a statement about people’s obsessions with celebrity and fame in general.  This is pointed out in the song’s lead verse and chorus, through which front man Danny Leal screams, “Nothing’s free in this world motherf*****/This life is not what you see on your screen/Your 5×3 reality/Before you double tap on what you wish you could be/Understand it might not be what you think/You want it so bad/But you don’t know what it means/There’s no turning back/Once you’re in too deep/Can you handle it/Here’s the cold hearted truth/Only craving the money the power the fame will never satisfy you.”  He continues in the song’s second verse, “This life is not just the views from the top/Because the higher your head gets the faster you’ll drop.”  This applies just as much to people’s obsession with celebrities and wanting to be famous as to wanting to be famous through YouTube and internet in general.  Given, this is hardly the first time that any band has ever take on the topic of people’s obsession with fame and celebrity, but it is no less gripping here as from any other act from across the musical universe.  When it is considered along with the fire in the song’s musical arrangement, the whole of the song becomes just one of the EP’s most notable entries.  The record’s title track stands on its own merits.

The musical arrangement at the center of ‘Built From War’ is a full on thrash/groove composition that will keep listeners just as engaged and entertained as ‘5X3.’  The powerhouse guitars and time keeping works with the bass line and vocals to once again present that Hatebreed-meets-Lamb of God type of sound.  Even more to its credit is that the arrangement is not just a rehashing of 5X3.  It is its own, unique musical presentation that audiences will appreciate just as much as that song.  That pummeling musical arrangement is just one part of what makes the song stand out.  Its lyrical content partners well with that merciless musical arrangement.

The song’s lyrical is a fist-pump-inducing statement that encourages listeners to defy all obstacles.  That message is made clear in the song’s lead verse and chorus in which Leal screams, “Are you the strongest of them all/Cross the lines of fate/Wipe the blood from your face/Forged in the heart of the fire/Fueled from failure/Made for more/Built from war.”  It is strengthened even more in the song’s second verse as he notes, “The power remains/The blood fueling rage/Don’t turn away/To rise you must fall/Tell me do you have the strength within you to be the strongest of them all.”  It is cemented in the song’s third and fourth verses, “Start the battle and end the war/Strength is the only way out/To be the strongest of them all/What are you built from/Are you the strongest of them all/Strength is the only way out/To be the strongest of them all.”  Again, little to no doubt is left here as to the song’s uplifting message.  It is a message of self-determination and strength.  When that welcome message is coupled with the song’s equally powerful musical arrangement, the result is a work that holds its own just as much as ‘5X3.’  It is just one more way in which the EP shines.  ‘Living for the Weekend’ is yet another song that makes the EP stand out.

‘Living for the Weekend’ stands out in part because of its own musical arrangement.  This song is not a cover of Fitz & The Tantrums’ song by the same name.  It just so happens that both songs have the same title, and while each is enjoyable in its own right, each is its own work.  It also is not a cover the song from The O’Jays, which is its own song, too.  Ironically, the song’s lyrical content is very similar in its approach, with the song’s lead verse stating, “Roll up your sleeves/And strap on them boots/Clocking in and out/It’s the work week blues/Got mouths to feed and bills to pay/All work, no play/Long days/They’re all the same/The f*****’ boss don’t even know my name/This 9-5/Gotta leave it behind/or break your f****** back/And keep your a** in line.”  The song’s chorus adds, “Thin lines, I’m walking all the time/F*** these deadlines/leave ‘em all behind/Hell yeah/All my worries are gone/With the music loud/And the grill’s on/Hell yeah, living for the weekend.”  The song continues on in similar fashion from there in its second and third verses, with the song’s subject lamenting about dealing with each day of the work week and needing a break.”  It’s a bit of a touchy subject right now considering how many thousands of people are out of work as a result of COVID-19, wishing they had a job, but it is still a song that will connect with its own share of listeners.  To that point, this and the song’s heavy, blues-based Hellyeah type arrangement make it stand out even more.  Keeping this in mind along with the impact of the other songs noted here and the EP’s other two songs not directly addressed, the whole of the EP proves itself a powerhouse presentation from Upon a Burning Body.  It makes Built From War a presentation that is built for success.

Upon a Burning Body’s new EP Built From War is a strong new presentation from the band.  It is one more example of why this band has remained so successful even despite being clearly one of the hard rock and metal community’s hardest working bands.  It shows this band is still running full steam ahead and is aimed to be one of the next leaders in the current generation of hard rock and metal bands.  That is evidenced through the EP’s musical and lyrical content, as the songs examined here show.  When those songs are considered along with the EP’s two songs not discussed, the whole of the record – the band’s seventh studio recording overall – proves itself a work that will continue to build the band’s name and reputation.  It is available now.  More information on the EP is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.uponaburningbody.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/uabb

 

 

 

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Messer’s ‘Simple Man’ Remix Album Is A Unique Exhibition of Talent

Courtesy: Maddpants Records

Independent hard rock band Messer is scheduled to release its new compilation record Friday.  The 23-song record Re:Turn Re:Visit Re:Mix is an expansive collection of remixes of the band’s single ‘Simple Man,’ which was released last year. The single is taken from the band’s self-titled debut album, which was itself released April 20, 2018 through Maddpants Records.  The rich collection of remixes featured throughout this record were collected through a contest that the up-and-coming band held for fans last year. The contest was meant to highlight the multitude of talented producers out there who are working daily to make names for themselves.  It is comparable to the remix CDs released back in the 90s from Gravity Kills, with its heavy load of EDM and dubstep style arrangements.  Needless to say, the various takes on the song are creative from one to the next.  One of the most notable of the remixes featured in the recording comes early in its 89-minute run time in the form of the NSTY Remix.  It will be addressed shortly.  The Aeropitune Remix, which comes roughly halfway through the compilation nearly 90-minute run time, is another notable take on the single.  It will be discussed a little later.  The single’s Windmill Remix, which comes near the record’s end, is one more of its most notable remixes, and will also be discussed later.  All three noted remixes show in their own way what makes this remix compilation record such a strong new offering from Messer.  When they are considered along with the rest of the collection’s variety of remixes, the result is a presentation that is a brave new release from the band that could help to establish the band’s name in the rock industry.

Messer’s new remix collection Re:Turn Re:Visit Re:Mix is an interesting new offering from the up-and-coming independent hard rock band that is well worth at least one listen.  That is because it presents such a rich variety of takes on Messer’s 2019 single ‘Simple Man.’ The song is not to be mistaken with Lynyrd Skynyrd’s famed song by the same name.  This is a completely different work from Lynyrd Skynyrd’s work.  The only thing that the two songs share is that name.  The song’s musical arrangement and lyrical content stand strongly on their own merits.  As the band noted in a news release about this record, the song’s lyrical them focuses on a person who has gotten fed up with the expected norms set by society and social media.  That person just wants to live his life and maintain his individuality.  The original musical arrangement that accompanies that introspective lyrical content does well in illustrating the frustration with the state of the world displayed through the song’s lyrical content, too.  It [the arrangement] is a driving, up-tempo work that is comparable to works from the likes of Drowning Pool, HellYeah, and Mudvayne.  As a matter of fact frontman Dereak Messer even can easily be confused with HellYeah/Mudvayne front man Chad Grey thanks to the sound of his voice as he sings.  The song is streaming through Messer’s official YouTube channel. Keeping all of this in mind, a close listen to Re:Turn Re:Visit Re:Mix reveals at least three notable takes on the song.  The most notable of those works comes early in the ‘NASTY Remix.’

The ‘NSTY Remix’ of ‘Simple Man’ is so notable in part because it stays the closest of any of the remixes to its source material.  The hard rock element is there, but at the same time is so well-balanced with some rather intriguing dubstep elements, and even some horns, which are part of the dubstep arrangement.  They are not their own element.  It even goes so far as to balance the song’s more subdued moments into the whole while creating a unique sound that holds its own along with the noted original material.  The song even brings in the song’s contemplative moment in which Messer whispers to himself “What doesn’t kill me,” and adds a unique touch there to add to the impact of that simple moment.  Simply put, this remix does very well in giving ‘Simple Man’ a unique new identity while also managing successfully to illustrate the emotion exhibited through the song’s lyrics just as well as the musical arrangement in the band’s original work.  It is just one of the remixes that serves so well, to show the strength of this compilation.  The ‘Aeropitune Remix’ is another of the most notable of the featured ‘Simple Man’ remixes.

The ‘Aeropitune Remix’ of ‘Simple Man’ is so notable because its arrangement is so starkly unlike that of the NSTY Remix and the rest of the record’s works.  If anything, this remix is more akin to works crafted by master producer Trent Reznor than anything else.  The subtle, brooding use of the bass line against Messer’s whispered vocals, in which he constantly states, “what doesn’t kill me” has such great impact in its simplicity.  It goes a long way toward giving the song another unique vantage point, this time creating the feeling of the song’s subject perhaps huddled by himself, reminding himself that he is stronger than everything going on.  It is an impressive take to say the very least.  Even as the song starts to build, with the addition of keyboards and some drums, it still maintains a certain level of control that keeps the arrangement so engaging and entertaining.  Whoever was behind the Aeropitune Remix of ‘Simple Man’ is fully deserving of applause for the creation of this remix, because while it does use some of the original song in its presentation, the song in whole is still so unique and enthralling with its balance of those more brooding moments and the slightly more energetic moments.  The song runs three minutes, 30 seconds, and because of the obvious time and thought that went into its arrangement, it hardly feels that long, yet still manages to leave listeners feeling fulfilled.  While this remix is without question quite engaging and entertaining, it is not the last of the record’s most notable works.  The ‘Windmill Remix,’ which comes late in the record’s nearly 90-minute run time is another key addition to the compilation.

The ‘Windmill Remix’ of ‘Simple Man’ stands out among the compilation’s many remixes because while there is a lot of dubstep content featured in the song’s arrangement, it does also try to stay as true as possible to its source material.  The two sides are surprisingly well-balanced throughout the course of the song’s three-minute, 47-second run time.  The use of the keyboards and other electronic elements make this take on ‘Simple Man’ unique from the many other dubstep and EDM remixes that are featured throughout the record.  There is something in the balance between the two sides – the original and dubstep version – that just does so well to again capture the emotion in the song’s lyrical content.  At the same time, it establishes itself completely separate from its counterparts on this record and shows the talent of its creator.  When it is considered alongside the ‘Aeropitune Remix’ and ‘NSTY Remix’ of ‘Simple Man’ as well as the rest of the record’s remixes, the whole of this 89-minute record proves itself one of the year’s most unique presentations and one of the year’s top new independent albums, despite being composed solely of remixes of just one song.

Messer’s brand new remix album Re:Turn Re:Visit Re:Mix is an engaging and entertaining work that puts on display the talents of many otherwise unknown producers while also giving new attention to Messer’s single ‘Simple Man’ and the band’s self-titled 2018 debut, from which the song was lifted.  The various remixes featured throughout the album give ‘Simple Man’ so many unique identities as the three remixes featured here show.  Whether it be those songs or the rest of the record’s featured remixes, the whole of the record gives listeners plenty to take in.  Keeping that in mind, the compilation proves itself a unique presentation that is one of the year’s best independent albums, even being just a collection of remixes of one song.  More information on Re:Turn Re:Visit Re:Mix is available online along with all of Messer’s latest news at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.messerband.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/messerband

 

 

 

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Monster Energy Aftershock Festival Lineup Announced; Tickets On Sale Now

Courtesy: Danny Wimmer Presents

The Monster Energy Aftershock Festival is coming back to California this year.

The annual festival is scheduled to be held October 13 and 14 at Sacramento’s Discovery Park.  Now in its seventh year, the festival will be headlined this year by System of a Down, Alice in Chains and Deftones.  This year marks the first time that System of a Down has performed at the festival.

Along with being the band’s first year at the festival, System of a Down’s performance at the Aftershock Festival will also be the band’s first announced U.S. appearance in three years.  It is also part of the band’s 20th anniversary celebration of its landmark self-titled album’s release.

While System of a Down, Alice in Chains and Deftones are the two-day festival’s planned headliners, they are not the only bands on the bill.  Also scheduled for the performance are Godsmack (which is currently touring in support of its brand new album When Legends Rise), Incubus, Seether, Jonathan Davis (whose latest solo album Black Labyrinth is scheduled for release May 25), At The Drive-In and Slash ft. Myles Kennedy and the Conspirators (who are currently working on their latest album) as well as Bullet For my Valentine (whose new album Gravity is scheduled to be released June 29), Sevendust (whose album All I See Is War is out now) and many more.  The full lineup for this year’s festival is noted below.

The current band lineup for Monster Energy Aftershock is as follows: System Of A Down, Deftones, Alice In Chains, Incubus, Godsmack, Shinedown, 311, Slash Featuring Myles Kennedy And The Conspirators, At The Drive-In, Seether, Jonathan Davis, Bullet For My Valentine, Underoath, Black Veil Brides, Hellyeah, Asking Alexandria, Sevendust, Everlast, GWAR, Emmure, Stick To Your Guns, Dance Gavin Dance, Monster Magnet, Red Sun Rising, Bad Wolves, The Fever 333, Dorothy, Wage War, Plague Vendor, Hyro The Hero, Amigo The Devil, All Them Witches, Slothrust, The Dose, Viza, The Jacks and more to be announced.

Providing food for this year’s festival will be a variety of vendors including: Southern Hospitality Concessions LLC, Danny Wimmer Presents’ affiliate concessionaire.  Food trucks will also be on hand, providing savory and sweet treats from: Angry Bird Grill, Bacon Mania, Barrett’s Burgers, Barrett’s Sliders, Big Joe’s BBQ, Bubba’s BBQ, Cousins Maine Lobster, Dippin Dots Ice Cream, Dogtown, Drewski’s Hot Rod Sandwiches, Florez Bar & Grill, La Mex Taqueria, Mac Attack, Mount Olympus, Sausage King, Smokin’ Hot Pizza, Spicy Pie and Xochimilco Mexican Restaurant.

Beverages will be available from a variety of vendors, including vendors for festival-goers 21 and older.  Those vendors include: Caduceus Vellars & Merkin Vineyards Wine Garden (owned by Tool/A Perfect Circle/ Puscifer front man Maynard James Keenan) and the Belching Beaver Bar (featuring drafts from the Vista, CA brewer including the Phantom Bride IPA, a collaboration with the Defones).  Mrkt N Jolt will also be on site, offering hot coffee, cold brew and other items.

As if the music, food and drink isn’t enough for festival-goers, this year’s festival will also offer lots of entertainment options.  Those options include the Monster Energy Experience, which gives audiences the chance to meet and greet the bands while also sampling the festival’s various offered drinks, The Music Experience, which is an interactive exhibit and music instrument retailer.  Non-profit animal rescue organization Take Me Home will also be on-site along with Dyin 2 Live/FXck Cancer, a wish-granting organization.  Fans can buy music from the festival’s bands on site at the f.y.e. Fan Experience.

Festival-goers can win prizes and check out the latest products from Zippo Lighters at Zippo Encore and charge their phones at SWFTCharge.

Tickets and VIP packages for this year’s festival are on-sale now.  Prices are listed below.  Service fees on all ticket purchases include a $0.50 charity fee for the T.J. Martell Foundation, a foundation aimed at researching and fighting cancer.  Active military personnel get discounts on their tickets through GovX.

Initial ticket prices will be as follows:

  • 2-Day Weekend General Admission: starting at $149.50 + fees
  • 2-Day Weekend VIP: starting at $299.50 + fees
  • Single Day General Admission: starting at $89.50 + fees
  • Single Day VIP: starting at $179.50 + fees

VIP tickets include: VIP entrance lanes to the venue, shaded VIP hang area with seating for dining, a VIP-only viewing area of main stage, video screens featuring a live feed of main stage inside the VIP hang area, upgraded food and drink selections, dedicated VIP restrooms and commemorative VIP Monster Energy Aftershock laminate.

A park & ride shuttle is being offered again for this year’s festival as parking at Discovery park is very limited.  Every ticket includes parking at Sleep Train Arena and non-stop shuttle directly to the festival site.

The Monster Energy Aftershock Festival is produced by Danny Wimmer Presents and fueled by Monster Energy.  It is sponsored by f.y.e., Coors Light, Jack Daniels, Zippo Encore, The Music Experience, SWFTCharge, Fxck Cancer, Ace of Spades, Take Me Home and Belching Beaver.  More sponsors will be announced later.

More information on this year’s Monster Energy Aftershock Festival is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.AftershockFestival.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/AftershockSac

 

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Corroded’s New LP Is Set To Put The Rock Community On “Alert”

Courtesy: Despotz Records

Late this past April, hard rock outfit Corroded released its latest album Defcon Zero.  The  band’s first new album in five years and its fourth full-length studio recording, it is a recording that could very possibly put the hard rock community in whole on alert.  That is because it presents a combination of music and lyrics throughout its 11-song, 50-minute run time that challenges even the best of the big names.  The record’s opener, ‘Carry Me My Bones’ clearly supports that statement.  ‘A Note To Me,’ which comes late in the record’s run, also supports that statement in its own way, too.  It will be discussed later.  ‘Fall of a Nation’ is yet another example of what makes Corroded’s latest effort a work that is anything but corroded itself.  Rather, it is another example of what makes the record a solid, strong new offering from one of hard rock’s best kept secrets.  It joins with the previously noted songs and the rest of the album’s offerings to make the record in whole an offering that is certain to put the hard rock community in whole on alert.

Defcon Zero is a strong and solid return for Corroded. That is especially considering the fact that it is the first record in five years from the Swedish hard rock outfit.  From start to finish, the band presents in this new offering a record that is certain to put the hard rock community in whole on alert.  That statement is supported in part in the album’s opener ‘Carry Me My Bones.’  The song’s musical arrangement instantly conjures thoughts of Dry Kill Logic’s best works.  That is evident as the song starts with a brooding, acoustic arrangement before gradually building into a full-on, guitar-driven assault.  What is really interesting is the heavy buildup to that assault conjures in itself, thoughts of some of Slayer’s best works.  The combination of front man Jens Westin’s vocal delivery and the song’s musical elements throughout the rest of the song maintain that previously noted comparison to Dry Kill Logic.  The whole of that arrangement is only one part of what makes this song stand as an example of Defcon Zero’s impressive nature.  The song’s lyrical content is just as important to discuss as the song’s musical arrangement in examining what makes it stand out.

The musical arrangement at the center of ‘Carry Me My Bones’ is in itself a key part of what makes this song stand out as an example of what makes Defcon Zero stand out. That is because it easily challenges hard rock’s top names from start to finish. Its lyrical content is just as important to discuss as its musical arrangement in examining its whole.  Westin said in an interview about the album’s lyrics “When it comes to the lyrics, I want everyone to make up their own opinion to what the songs are about.” He went on to compare interpreting the album’s lyrics to comparing a book to its cinematic counterpart.  Keeping that in mind, the lyrical content at the center of this song definitely proves to be interesting.  Westin sings here, “I’ve been awake/For days/On my way to hell/I’m not going to lay down and die before I get there…What you believe is more than you know/Carry me my tired bones/Far away/So far away from secrets/A million miles away/Carry me my tired bones.”  He goes on to sing in the song’s second verse, “I was stuck/In-between/No place and nowhere….” before he and his band mates—Tomas Andersson (guitar), Bjarne Elvsgard (bass) and Per Solang (drums)—reprise the song’s chorus time to finish off the song.  Noting again that Westin leaves the lyrics’ interpretation to listeners’ own thoughts, this critic’s take on the song’s lyrical content is that it comes across as an introspective rumination of someone working through a very difficult time.  That is inferred in the song’s lead verse.  The hell in question is clearly metaphorical.  The subject’s mind has been racing, but that subject is still determined not to give up in whatever difficult situation is presented.  As Westin’s subject sings “carry me my tired bones,” one can interpret that perhaps the song’s subject is saying he or she wants to get away from everything; all of the negatives surrounding him or her.  The song’s second verse continues to infer that same message in this critic’s own interpretation.  It would be interesting to learn the true message in the song’s lyrical content.  That aside, the combination of that seeming message couples quite well with the song’s musical arrangement to make for a song that is a powerful first impression for the band this time out.  It is just the start, too.  ‘A Note To Me,’ which comes late in the album’s run, is another solid addition to the album’s whole.

‘Carry Me My Bones’ is a strong first impression from Corroded on its latest new album.  That is due to the combination of its musical and lyrical content.  The two elements together make the song a clear example of what makes Defcon Zero stand out in whole.  It is just one of the songs that shows what makes the album stand out, too.  ‘A Note To Me’ is another example of what makes the record in whole stand out.  As with the album’s opener, that is due at least in part to its musical arrangement.  The musical arrangement here is a stark contrast to that of ‘Carry Me My Bones.’  It is a deeply emotional, guitar-driven composition that (and some audiences will call this musical heresy) conjures thoughts of Theory of a Deadman and Nickelback.  Yes, it seems damning.  But the reality is that when one compares this composition to that at the center of ‘Carry Me My Bones,’ it is actually a good thing that such a comparison can be made.  That is because it shows in its own right the reach of the band’s talent, sounds and influences.  Westin’s vocal delivery throughout even conjures thoughts of Nickelback front man Chad Kroeger through his delivery.  Again, some might see such a comparison as musical heresy of sorts.  The reality once more though, is that it shows the band’s ability to reach into any rock and hard rock sub-genre.  That is a compliment of the highest caliber to the band.  Of course the song’s musical arrangement is only part of what makes it stand out.  Its lyrical content is just as important to discuss as its musical arrangement.

The musical arrangement at the center of ‘A Note To Me’ is in itself a key component of its overall presentation.  When set against the composition at the center of ‘Carry Me My Bones,’ it shows even more why Defcon Zero stands out among this year’s field of new rock and hard rock records.  The song’s musical arrangement is only one part of what makes the song stand out.  Its lyrical content, which is just as brooding as its musical arrangement is just as important to discuss as that musical content.  Westin sings here in the song’s lead verse, “This bitter pill I got/It turns out to be hard to swallow/I’d make my head whole/But everything inside feels hollow/I am the haunting of the day that never came/Yeah, what a shame.”  He goes on to sing in the song’s second verse, “The truth hurts that I know/And now it’s out for everyone to see/I’m just a coward/Who hates everything about me/Everything I’ve done was a lie/It’s harder to cry.”  This comes across as someone who is confessing a major hidden truth to someone else.  As the song progresses through its chorus, it can be inferred that the someone in question is obviously someone close to the subject.  What is interesting is that Westin doesn’t point out if that person is male, female, young or old.  That in itself is a really powerful statement.  When one really thinks deeply about this matter, the confession could work in any of those situations.  That is especially the case as Westin sings in the song’s final moments, “My only hope is that you will forgive/And that some day/Some day you will forget.”  Regardless of whether the situation presented here is between friends, family or some other close person, the confession by the song’s subject is powerful.  It is the kind of statement made in similar songs by the aforementioned mainstream friendly acts; the kind of statement that, when coupled with the song’s musical arrangement, is made even more powerful.  The combination of those two elements makes the song in whole a truly powerful work that once again can rival songs from the bands already noted.  Keeping that in mind, it is one more work included in this record that shows why this record stands out among its counterparts both mainstream and independent.  It still is not the last of the songs that serves to show what makes Defcon Zero stand out.  ‘Fall of a Nation’ is one more example of what makes this record one that will put the rock community in whole on alert.

‘Carry Me My Bones’ and ‘A Note To Me’ are both solid examples of what makes Defcon Zero a strong new effort from Corroded.  That is because they show the wide reach of the album’s sound, proving its appeal to metal purists and mainstream rock fans alike.  The songs’ lyrical content adds just as much depth to their whole.  While both songs’ musical and lyrical content serves to make them clear examples of the album’s strength, they are only two examples of that strength.  ‘Fall of a Nation’ just as clearly proves to be another example of said strength.  That is evident first through its adrenaline-fueled, guitar and drum-driven musical arrangement, which mixes elements of Hellyeah, Soil and other similar acts for a whole that will instantly have listeners’ horns in the air.  Its lyrical content will keep listeners just as engaged as Westin seemingly comments on…well…the downfall of a nation.  Being that there is so much turmoil the world over and that Westin and company don’t necessarily point out which nation is being addressed, the commentary could, in reality, apply to the United States, any Middle Eastern Nation or other nation.  There is mention of “seeing the  flames rising,” “bones grinding,” “ashes in the air” and other rather interesting visuals.  This could be a commentary of what could come to any nation if said nation(s) don’t get things in check and soon.  The added mention of “we are the ones who are watching everything from high up above/We are the ones who idle standing by as things burn” adds to the power of that message.  It is almost as if the song’s subject is saying, “we’re going to stand by and let the world destroy itself and this is what we see happening.”  It is a powerful, possible statement.  The power in the song’s musical arrangement expertly captures the energy in that supposed statement, too.  Keeping that in mind, the whole of that musical and lyrical content makes this song clearly one more example of what makes Defcon Zero such a powerful new offering from Corroded.  It is hardly the last song that serves to exemplify what makes this album stand out.  ‘Gun and a Bullet,’ ‘Burn It To The Ground,’ and ‘Vessels of Hate’ each do their own part to show what makes this record stand out, too.  All things considered, the songs noted and not prove Defcon Zero a record that will put the rock community in whole on alert.

Defcon Zero is a powerful return for Corroded.  It is a record that proves audiences’ five-year wait for the band’s next album was well worth it.  What’s more it is a record that is certain to put the rock community in whole on alert.  That is because it is such a strong new effort from start to finish both in regards to its musical arrangements and lyrical content.  All things considered, this record is one that deserves a spot on any critic’s list of the year’s top new hard rock albums.  It is available now.  More information on Defcon Zero is available online now along with all of Corroded’s  latest news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.corroded.se

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/corrodedsweden

 

 

 

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Metal Purists Will Appreciate UDR Music’s Wacken 2015 Recording

Courtesy: UDR Music

Courtesy: UDR Music

The Wacken Open Air Festival is one of the most renowned hard rock concert festivals if the music industry.  The festival started 26 years ago in the city after which it is named.  Late this summer UDR Music celebrated the festivals 25th anniversary – marked in 2015 – with the release of the festival’s 25th anniversary recording.  Considering that the recording presents the show lineup from the festival’s 25th anniversary, its title is a little bit misleading.  That aside, it is still an enjoyable experience for any purist member of the metal nation worldwide.  That is due in no small part to the lineup presented in the recording.  This will be discussed shortly.  The bands’ performances are just as important to note in the recording’s presentation as is the recording’s presented lineup.  That will be discussed later.  The platforms on which the recording has been made available rounds out the most important of the recording’s elements.  Each element is clearly important in its own right to the recording’s presentation.  All things considered, Live at Wacken 2015 26 Years Louder Than Hell is one of this year’s top new overall live recordings.

Live at Wacken 2015 – ­26 Years Louder Than Hell is one of 2016’s top new overall live recordings.  It is hardly the first live recording that the festival’s organizers have ever released.  Even with that in mind, it is still an enjoyable recording for the festival’s fans and for the purist metal legions around the world.  That is due in no small part to the recording’s featured performer list.  A total of 107 bands performed on Wacken 2015 between the Bullhead City Circus, Party Stage and double main stage.  It goes without saying that considering that mass of metal, there’s no way that UDR or the fesitval’s organizers could have possibly featured every one of those bands.  Regardless, the featured performer list included in this recording is still impressive in its own right.  That list includes the likes of Judas Priest, Danko Jones, Uli Jon Roth, In Flames, Annihilator and so many others.  Simply put, the perfomer list featured in this recording pulls from a number of metal’s sub genres and from so many eras of metal’s history.  It goes to show the respect that the festival’s organizers and fans have for metal, its history and culture.  Sure, it would have been nice to have Dream Theater included in the featured performer list, or maybe Hellyeah, or even Prong (yes, even Prong performed at Wacken 2015).  But the performer list included in this recording is still impressive in its own right in the end.  Considering this, it should be clear why it is such an important piece of the recording’s presentation.  It is just one of the important elements to note.  The featured acts’ stage presence in their performances is just as important to note here as the acts themselves.

The acts that are featured in UDR Music’s new Wacken Open Air Festival recording are important in their own right to the recording’s overall presentation.  That is because while hardly every one of the bands that performed at the festival, they represent a wide swatch of the metal community and its history.  That means the recording will reach just as wide of an audience.  While the recording’s featured performer list is clearly an important piece of the recording’s presentation, it is hardly the recording’s only important element.  The bands’ stage presence in their performances plays an important part in the recording’s presentation, too.  Rob Halford and company prove the importance of the bands’ performances right from the recording’s outset.  They take the stage and own it with ease.  Halford is at the top of his game both in terms of his vocal talent and his very presence.  Glenn Tipton is just as enjoyable to take in as he works his way through the band’s performance of ‘Painkiller.  On another note, the members of Running Wild are just as impressive as they work through the high-octane ‘Under The Jolly Roger.’  Skindred’s performance of ‘Proceed With Caution’ will have home audiences on their feet just as easily as it did the audience in attendance of the festival.  That is because of the fire and energy exuded by the band throughout its performance.  It is just one more example of the importance of the bands’ performance to the festival recording’s presentation.  One could just as easily cite the performances from My Dying Bride, In Flames, and Death Angel as proof of that importance, too.  All things considered, it is safe to say that every single performance featured in this recording will keep home audiences just as entertained and engaged as the audiences that got to enjoy the festival in person.  Even with all of this in mind, the bands’ performances still are not the last element to note in examining this recording.  The platforms on which the recording has been made available are just as important to note as the previously discussed elements.

The bands that were featured in Live at Wacken 2015 26 Years Louder Than Hell and their performances are both key elements in examining the festival’s recording.  The featured performer list presents the past, present and future of metal while also presenting a solid cross-section proving what has made the festival so respected for now 26 years.  The featured bands’ performances are so important to note because they will keep home audiences just as entertained and engaged as the audiences who had the honor of experiencing the festival in person.  While both elements are clearly important both alone and collectively to the recording’s presentation, they are not its only important elements.  The platforms on which the recording has been made available are just as important to note as the previously noted elements.  Audiences will be happy to know that the recording has been made available on separate 2 DVD/2 CD and 2 BD/2 CD combo pack.  The DVD set averages approximately $22 and the BD set $23.  Considering that, the various platforms and their prices are relatively affordable for audiences.  The only downside to the sets is that their set lists don’t exactly match.  Not every song featured in the recording’s DVD and BD presentation is included in the recording’s CD platform.  To that end, it is the recording’s only major negative, which is actually a good thing.  That means that the recording’s varied platforms and other discussed elements more than make up for that one negative, as unavoidable as it is to note.  All things considered, Live at Wacken 2015 26 Years Louder Than Hell proves in the bigger picture to be one of 2016’s top new live recordings as well as one of the year’s top new live DVD/BDs and CDs.  It is available now in stores and online.

Live at Wacken 2015 26 Years Louder Than Hell is one of 2016’s top new live recordings.  That is the case even considering that it does have at least one unavoidable negative.  The recording’s featured performer list and the featured acts’ performances partner with the varied platforms on which the recording has been made available to make the recording an enjoyable experience for any purist member of the metal nation worldwide.  It is available now in stores and online.  More information on this and other titles from UDR Music is available online now at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.udr-music.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/udrmusic

 

 

 

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Cage9 Set To Enlighten Audiences With Its New Album, ‘Illuminator’

Cage9 has officially been released.

One of the latest additions to Dave Ellefson’s EMP Label Group, the band released its new album Illuminator this past Friday, June 3rd.  The album was released via eOne in the United States and Triple Vision Entertainment in Japan.  It is schedule for release later this year in Europe via SPV.  The band unveiled the video for the album’s lead single ‘Everything You Love Will Someday Die’ earlier this spring.  The video is streaming online now via YouTube.  It features footage of the band’s members and fans singing the song.

 

Courtesy:  EMP Label Group

Courtesy: EMP Label Group

 

Front man Evan Rodaniche discussed the video in a recent interview.  He noted the song’s family roots in the interview and the video’s recording process.  “This song is dedicated to my father, who passed away about a month ago after a two year battle with cancer,” he said.  “But even when I first wrote these lyrics at the onset of his terminal diagnosis as a sort of comforting mantra, in the back of my mind I believed my dad was indestructible.  I never thought I’d be adding an “in loving memory” dedication at the end of this video.  But then he was gone.  And that’s what this is all about.  We spend our modern lives wrapped up in our first world problems, completely disconnected with the natural cycles of the planet around us.”

In discussing the video’s production, Rodaniche noted the cameras that were used and the band’s general approach to making the clip.  We shot the video DIY with a couple Canon DSLR cameras, a black sheet in our rehearsal room and about forty non-actor friends, fans, and family who showed up one sunny Los Angeles afternoon in 2015 to mouth the lyrics to a song they’d never heard.  We aimed to bring home the message that no matter who you are we’re all in this together.”  He went on to not the song’s roots and sound in his discussion, too noting, “As for the song itself, it’s a little bit of old school thrash mixed with something more melodic and a little piano and acoustic guitar wankery to push it over the 6 minute epic-metal-song mark. (Yes, there’s a radio edit.)  He linked this in to a discussion on [Dave] Ellefson discovering Cage 9 through ‘Everything You Love Will Someday Die.’  I was the 14 year old kid running around with a worn out cassette of Peace Sells in his Walkman, he said.  “So having the dude that brought us pretty much THE most recognizable bass riff of my (and half the planet over 30’s) youth dig our band is a huge honor.”  He went on further noting, “Cage 9 originated in Panama where I grew up playing in a band yet having pretty much never experienced famous bands performing live to learn from, not to mention any of our idols like Megadeth or Metallica.  This definitely makes this chance to work with Dave in a mentor/label situation that much more amazing.  Very excited to be releasing our new album Illuminator with EMP this summer.”

Ellefson shared his thoughts on the band and its song in a discussion of his own even echoing the Megadeth/Metallica influence in the band’s new single noted by Rodaniche.  “Cage9 is definitely the real deal,” he said.  When I first heard ‘Everything You Love Will One Day Die,’ it instantly struck me as the closest I’ve heard to a song with a true Metallica/Megadeth core, with the radio accessibility to really connect with a modern rock audience.  And with the band’s history, and everything they’ve accomplished, they were a perfect fit for what we were doing at EMP.”

Since moving to Los Angeles the band has released a total of six albums and more than one hundred songs.  One of those albums was completely in Spanish.  The band has sold 25,000 copies of its albums worldwide in that time and played over 50 dates across America just last year.  It has also toured Japan and Central America as direct opener for Ozzy Osbourne, Bad Religion, Seether, and In This Moment.  The band has also shared stage time with the likes of Sevendust, Hellyeah, Karnivool, and others.  Even Rodaniche himself spent some time in the past as a member of Powerman 5000.  He also helped to co-write, record, and mix some of PM5K’s most recent albums.  That isn’t Rodaniche’s only production credit.  He also worked on ex-Flyleaf singer Lacey Sturm’s new album and work from Boy Hits Car, and others.  As if all of this isn’t enough credit to Cage9, the band has also received glowing reviews from its much more well-known counterparts including: Pop Evil, Korn, Saving Abel, Asking Alexandria, Devil You Know, and 9Electric just to name a handful of acts.

More information on Cage9’s new album is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

 

 

Website: http://www.cage9.com

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/Cage9

Twitter: http://twitter.com/cage9

 

 

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.

Houston Open Air Festival Lineup Announced

Courtesy:  Ashton-Magnuson Media/Danny Wimmer Presents

Courtesy: Ashton-Magnuson Media/Danny Wimmer Presents

The lineup for the 2016 Houston Open Air Festival has officially been announced.

Organizers with the Houston Open Air Festival have revealed the lineup for the 2016 Houston Open Air Festival.  The lineup will feature 35 bands over two days.  That list includes: Deftones, Slayer,Chevelle, The Cult, Ministry, Alter Bridge, Ghost, Anthrax, Pierce The Veil, Of Mice & Men, Sevendust, Baroness, Hellyeah, Chevy Metal, Buckcherry, Nothing More, The Amity Affliction, Max & Iggor Cavalera: Return To Roots, Avatar, letlive., Jim Breuer and the Loud & Rowdy, Texas Hippie Coalition, Young Guns, Starset, Sick Puppies, Skindred, Neck Deep, Sons Of Texas, KYNG, Twelve Foot Ninja, Gemini Syndrome, The Word Alive, Dinosaur Pile Up, September Mourning, and more.  Avenged Sevenfold and Alice in Chains have been named as the festival’s headliners.

A rolling discounted Early Bird pre-sale for Weekend General Admission tickets begins this Tuesday, May 17th at 12pm CDT/1pm EDT.  A very limited quantity of tickets will be available during this pre-sale.  They can be purchased online at http://www.HoustonOpenAir.com and will only be available while supplies last.  Their prices are noted below.

 

Early Bird #1: $89.50

Early Bird #2: $99.50

 

VIP weekend tickets will also be available at a cost of $234.50.

Public on-sale tickets will go on sale Friday, May 20th at 12pm CDT/1pm EDT.  They will also be available for purchase online at http://www.HoustonOpenAir.com.  Their prices are listed below.

 

 

Weekend GA: $109.50

Single-day GA: $69.50

Single-day VIP: $129.50

VIP Weekend: $234.50

 

 

VIP tickets include: VIP entrance lanes into venue, access to VIP-only area featuring dedicated bar, beverage and food options (for additional purchase), VIP-only viewing area of Main Stage, dedicated restroom facilities, and a VIP-only commemorative laminate.

A portion of all proceeds from ticket sales for the festival will go toward aiding the Greater Houston Storm Relief Fund.  The Greater Houston Storm Relief Fund was established by Houston’s mayor Sylvester Turner in order to accept donations for flood relief in the Houston community.  This includes aiding victims of the flooding that stemmed from recent storms that hit the region.  More information on The Greater Houston Storm Relief Fund is available online at http://www.houstonrecovers.org.  Danny Hayes, CEO of Danny Wimmer Presents, spoke with the media recently.  He discussed the timing of the festival’s announcement in relation to the city’s recovery from said storms as well as the motivation for teaming with Mayor Turner in his recovery efforts.  “Houston Open Air has been in the works for almost a year now,” he said.  It’s awkward to announce a major music festival in a city that has experienced such recent hardship and, in fact, we delayed our announcements out of respect for what Houston has endured. But at the same time, our festivals are about highlighting the strengths (or sometimes the needs) of our host city. There’s no more important way to do that right now than to support Mayor Turner’s efforts to help Houston recover from this spring’s flooding and we will be incorporating this message throughout our launch campaign.”

Danny Wimmer is the founder of Danny Wimmer Presents.  He shared his thoughts on the logistics of the concert’s location, its lineup, and more in his discussion with the press.  “Houston is one of the country’s biggest rock markets and, when combined with the impressive food scene happening here, it’s a natural location for a DWP festival,” he said.  “We’re thrilled to have such a diverse first-year lineup that includes Avenged Sevenfold, Alice In Chains and Chevelle. With the inclusion of an incredible food experience and the Jack Daniel’s Whiskey Row, we are kicking off a powerhouse experience that will live in the market for many years to come!”

The Houston Open Air Festival’s band lineup is just part of what audiences have to look forward to this year.  There will also be a special food and drink experience for fans who attend.  This includes the Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Whiskey Row and a massive Gourmet Man Food Experience  The brands featured in the Jack Daniel’s Old No. 7 Whiskey Row include: Jack Daniel’s Black Label, Gentleman Jack, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Honey, Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Fire, Old Forester, and Woodford Reserve.  The complete lineup and menus for the Gourmet Man Food experience will be announced soon.

Houston Open Air is produced by Danny Wimmer Presents, producer of: Louder Than Life, Chicago Open Air, Monster Energy Welcome To Rockville, Monster Energy Fort Rock, Monster Energy Aftershock, Monster Energy Carolina Rebellion, Northern Invasion, Monster Energy Rock Allegiance, Rock on the Range, and more.  It is sponsored by: Monster Energy, Jack Daniel’s, El Jimador, Fxck Cancer’s Dyin2Live, NRG Park, and SoHo Concessions, and more to be announced soon.

NRG Park is the home of the NFL’s Houston Texans and the annual Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo.  It is located at One NRG Park in Houston, TX.

More information on the Houston Open Air Festival is available online now at:

 

 

Website: http://www.HoustonOpenAir.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/HouOpenAir

 

 

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.

Monster Energy Rock Allegiance Festival Returning For Its Second Year

Courtesy:  Danny Wimmer Presents/Ashton-Magnuson Media

Courtesy: Danny Wimmer Presents/Ashton-Magnuson Media

There’s big concert news coming out of Pennsylvania  today.

The Monster Energy Rock Allegiance Festival is returning to Pennsylvania this summer.  It will take place Saturday, September 17th and Sunday, September 18th at Talen Energy Stadium (formerly PPL Park), home of Major League Soccer’s Philadelphia Union, in Chester, PA, which is just outside of Philadelphia.  It will feature a lineup of more than 35 bands.  That lineup includes but is not limited to: Avenged Sevenfold, Alice In Chains, Slayer, The Offspring, Breaking Benjamin, Volbeat, Chevelle, The Cult, The Pretty Reckless, Pierce The Veil, Of Mice & Men, Ghost, Anthrax, Killswitch Engage, Chevy Metal, Baroness, Hellyeah, Sevendust, Motionless In White, Buckcherry, Trivium, Avatar, Max & Iggor Cavalera Return To Roots, Jim Breuer and the Loud & Rowdy, Sick Puppies, The Amity Affliction, letlive., Neck Deep, Skindred, KYNG, Young Guns, Crobot, Devour The Day, Twelve Foot Ninja, Dinosaur Pile Up, Death Angel and Hundredth.

A rolling discounted Early Bird on-sale for weekend General Admission tickets and VIP passes starts this Tuesday, May 10th at 12pm EDT and runs through Friday, May 13th at 10am EDT.  Early Bird tickets and VIP passes will be available in a very limited quantity.  The prices for each is noted below.

 

Early Bird #1: $79 GA Weekend Stands, $99 GA Weekend Floor, $219 VIP Weekend

Early Bird #2: $89 GA Weekend Stands, $109 GA Weekend Floor, $239 VIP Weekend

Early Bird #3: $99 GA Weekend Stands, $129 GA Weekend Floor, $259 VIP Weekend

 

Zippo 2-packs will also be available at a price of $550.  They include 2-VIP weekend passes and 2 commemorative Zippos.  Single-day admission and general weekend packages will go on full sale along with VIP packages beginning May 13th at 10am EDT.  Prices will increase in the weeks leading up to the festival.  Current prices are listed below.

 

GA Weekend: $129 floor, $99 stands

GA 4-Packs: $308

VIP Weekend: $219

VIP 2-Packs: $550

Single Day GA (stands): $44.50

Single Day VIP: $119.50

 

VIP packages for the festival include: Stadium-level VIP main stage viewing, floor-level VIP viewing area for the west main stage, dedicated entrance lanes into the festival, VIP area with shade and picnic tables, VIP restrooms, special food and beverage offerings (for additional purchase), and a commemorative VIP laminate.

The music is just one part of the experience that audiences will be able to enjoy at this year’s festival.  Along with lots of great music there will also be loads of great food and drink, too.  There will loads of dishes offered by some of Philadelphia’s eateries in the Gourmet Man Food experience.  There will also be plenty of brews offered by breweries from across America.  The culinary lineup for the Gourmet Man Food Experience currently features: Braz-B-Q, Chickie & Pete’s, The Cow & The Curd, Dos Hermanos, Dump ’n’ Roll, M.A.T.T.’s Gourmet Sliders, Mama’s Meatballs, Seoulfull Philly, Sum Pig and The Tot Cart.  The breweries that will be at the festival include: Evolution Craft Brewing Co (Salisbury, MD), Fordham & Dominion Brewing Company (Dover, DE), New Belgium Brewing (Fort Collins, CO), Starr Hill Brewery (Crozet, VA), Tröegs Independent Brewing (Hershey, PA) and Victory Brewing Company (Downington, PA).

Danny Wimmer, head of Danny Wimmer Presents, recently discussed the festival’s return with the media.  He discussed not only the festival’s return but its expansion to two days this year and expectations in general for this year’s event.  “When we came to Philadelphia last year, we knew there was a demand for this kind of festival in the market, but the response exceeded our expectations,” he said.  Growing to two days in our second year was an obvious decision, and we’re looking forward to giving fans an even better experience in 2016.”

Geoff Gordon is President of Live Nation Philadelphia.  He echoed Wimmer’s sentiments in his thoughts on the festival’s return.  “Last year’s Monster Energy Rock Allegiance was a huge success on so many levels,” he said.  “We were proud to bring this venue their first ever concert; a record-setting, sold out smash hit. The audience had such a great time enjoying a unique experience of music and lifestyle — we knew in 2016 we could turn it up a notch!”

The Monster Energy Rock Allegiance Festival is presented by Danny Wimmer Presents, Live Nation, and Spectra at Talen Energy Stadium.  It is sponsored by: Jack Daniel’s, Zippo Encore, The Music Experience, Take Me Home, and Fxck Cancer/Dyin2Live, with more to be announced.  More information on the 2016 Monster Energy Rock Allegiance Festival is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.RockAllegiance.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/rockallegiance

 

More information on all of the latest events at Talen Energy Stadium is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.philadelphiaunion.com/stadium

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/talenenergystdm

 

Audiences can also get advance notice about all of the latest events at Talen Energy Stadium by joining the free Talen Energy Stadium CyberClub here.

To keep up with all of 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.

AHTY’s New Album Will Leave Listeners “Screaming” For More

Courtesy:  Minus Head Records

Courtesy: Minus Head Records

Bow down, metal nation.  All Hail The Yeti has returned.  And it has done so in grand fashion with its long-awaited sophomore album Screams From a Black Wilderness.  The thirteen-song record is a musical offering that proves to be a solid follow-up to the band’s self-titled 2012 debut from beginning to end.  That is thanks both to the song’s powerful musical arrangements and equally engaging campfire horror stories.  Both elements combine within the course of each song to make Screams From a Black Wilderness a record that every metal purist should hear at least once if not more now that it is available.  The album’s opener and lead single ‘Before The Flames’ is a good example of how that mix of music and lyrics makes this record such a solid return for All Hail The Yeti.  ‘Witch Is Dead,’ the album’s midway point, is another piece that exemplifies the power of this record’s musical and lyrical material.  It will be discussed later.  ‘Let The Night Roar’ is one more example of that power.  All three songs, when set against one another, paint a clear picture of the power of the album’s musical and lyrical content.  Together with the rest of the album’s offerings, all thirteen songs make this fifty-nine minute record a collection of songs that is one more of 2016’s top new hard rock and metal records.

Four years removed from the release of its self-titled debut album All Hail The Yeti has returned with a new offering that actually bests that record.  That is proven time and again throughout the course of the album’s thirteen songs and fifty-nine minute run time.  Its opener and lead single ‘Before The Flames’ is proof of that in itself.  This is thanks both to its musical arrangement and its lyrical content.  In regards to the song’s musical content it is a piece that any fan of Hellyeah, Dry Kill Logic, Motionless in White and other acts of that ilk.  The arrangement in question is a mid-tempo composition that is driven largely by its guitar line and drums.  Front man Connor Garritty conjures thoughts of Hellyeah/Mudvayne front man Chad Gray with his vocal delivery.  That adds even more punch to the song’s musical arrangement.  It’s just one part of what makes this song proof of the album’s overall strength.  The song’s lyrical content is just as important to the song as its musical makeup.  Garritty noted in a recent interview that the album’s songs are lyrically based on well-known campfire horror stories.  And the story behind this song is horror, needless to say.  It centers on the story of an orphanage that caught fire and killed all of the children inside.  It would be interesting to discover the roots of the story.  Though, the story of Vermillion’s Gore Orphanage in Ohio seems to line up pretty well with this story.  One part of the story even has the spirits of the children running through the woods, allegedly still on fire, screaming “Help Me” much as Garritty screams “Help Us” Save Us/Fire and flame are surrounding us.”  The little girl telling her parents in a letter (that obviously never made it to them) of how the fire started makes the story even more painful to hear.  That is not to say that there is any truth to the Ohio legend.  But the two stories definitely do sound similar.  Regardless of whether or not a relationship exists between that story and the story behind this song, it can still be said that the combination of the song’s story and its musical arrangement makes this song one of the album’s best and just one example of what makes Screams From a Black Wilderness a solid sophomore effort from All Hail The Yeti and a record that was well worth the wait.

‘Before The Flames’ is a good example of what makes All Hail The Yeti’s long-awaited sophomore album Screams From a Black Wilderness a solid sophomore effort from the Los Angeles, CA-based band.  It shows just as much why the album was well worth the wait.  While it is a good example of both, it is not the only good example of each.  The album’s midpoint, ‘Witch Is Dead,’ is another example of what makes this record stand out.  In terms of its musical content the influences of Dry Kill Logic and Hellyeah are clear and present throughout.  That is especially the case in the song’s chorus in which Garritty and company chant, “Hey, hey the witch is dead/Which old witch/The wicked witch/Hey, hey the wicked witch is dead/Wake up/Your blood runs red/As it drips off of your head/Wake up/The f****** b**** is dead” against the song’s pounding drums and guitars.  The chorus isn’t the only place in which those influences show themselves.  They are just as evident throughout the song’s verses, too.  Speaking of the song’s verses their content sounds pretty violent to say the least.  However one must keep in mind here that ‘Witch Is Dead’, like the album’s other songs, is based on a classic campfire horror story.  Considering this one can only wonder which story was the influence behind the song.  That is because in today’s era it sadly sounds like way too many real life murder stories.  Garrity sings here of a man who has perhaps murdered a woman.  That is inferred as he screams, “It seems like lately there’s no more you and I/Will not take this anymore/I come to judge you f****** w****/I bet you die alone/There is no chance in this life you’re making/All alone/So stop breathing/You sucked up enough.”  That’s just the song’s lead verse, too.  Things don’t’ lighten up any in the song’s second verse.  Garritty’s character screams here, “And now you’re mine/Your hands are tied and you’re squealin’ like a swine/It makes me smile/When I realize that I/Have you where I want you/I always knew it would end like this.”  It gets even harsher in the song’s closing verse.  That verse will be left for audiences to discover for themselves.  But it goes without saying that whichever classic campfire story is the basis for this song, it definitely is a scary one.  And that fear factor, when set against the song’s musical content, makes the song in whole a work that is just as nightmare-inducing as it is entertaining (thanks to its musical content).  As crazy as it might seem, the mix of that fear factor and entertainment factor shows why the song in whole is another good example of what makes Screams From a Black Wilderness such a solid and welcome new return from All Hail The Yeti.  It still is not the album’s only other example, either.  ‘Let The Night Roar’ is one more example of what makes this record such a solid and welcome return for the band.

‘Before The Flames’ and ‘Witch Is Dead’ are both key examples of what makes All Hail The Yeti’s new album a solid and welcome return for the band.  They are just a couple of examples of what makes it so solid and welcome.  ‘Let The Night Roar’ is one more of the album’s strong points.  The song’s musical arrangement sets its foundation.  Its musical arrangement boasts a familiar heavy, chugging sound that is more akin to the likes of Crowbar, Down, and others of that ilk.  In regards to its lyrical content it is obvious right from the song’s opening verse that the song is centered on the Jonestown Massacre.  That is because Garritty screams right in the opening lines, “They were told to line up/And drink the glass of Flavor-Aid…would send them to an early grave.”  He even makes light of Jones having a hurried, agitated sense about him when he told his followers to drink the juice and commit suicide, as soldiers were coming.”  This depiction is spot on according to the story of what happened at Jonestown.  What’s really scary here is that the band even gives voice to Jones’ followers as they tell Jones that they drink to make him happy.  The way in which Garritty and company sing those lines makes the story so sad.  That is because of the knowledge that they had been completely brainwashed by that madman.  It also incorporates what can only be assumed to be audio of Jones talking to his followers in the course of the song in order to heighten the song’s impact.  It does just that, too.  That heightened impact, when set against the song’s heavy, chugging musical arrangement, once again shows why this composition is one of the album’s strongest points.  When set alongside the likes of ‘Witch Is Dead’ and ‘Before The Flames’ all three songs join together to paint a very scary picture in the best way possible.  They paint a picture of an album that will entertain listeners once more just as much as it will scare them with each of its songs’ stories.  This applies just as much with the album’s remaining songs not noted here.  All things considered the musical and lyrical material that makes up the body of this record shows it in whole to be a record that is a solid, welcome return from All Hail The Yeti and also one of the best new hard rock and metal albums of the year.

All Hail The Yeti’s new album Screams From a Black Wilderness is a solid, welcome return from the Los Angeles, CA-based metal outfit.  It is also one of this year’s top new hard rock and metal records.  That is thanks to stories that real or imagined are the stuff of nightmares.  The musical foundation set by the song’s arrangements adds even more impact to the album.  This applies not only to the songs noted in this review but to every one of the album’s featured offerings.  All things considered Scenes From a Black Wilderness proves to be a solid, welcome return for All Hail The Yeti and one of the year’s top new hard rock and metal offerings.  It is a record that will leave audiences and other bands bowing to the band as one of the metal community’s next big names.  It is available now and can be downloaded direct online via iTunes and Amazon.  More information on Screams From a Black Wilderness is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

 

 

Website: http://www.allhailtheyeti.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/allhailtheyeti

 

 

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Rock On The Range Sells Out For Fourth Straight Year

Rock-on-the-Range-logo

Courtesy: AEG Live/Danny Wimmer Presents/Ashton-Magnuson Media

The annual Rock on the Range festival has done it again.

For the fourth consecutive year the Rock on the Range festival has officially sold out. This year’s mark is especially important for the festival as it marks the festival’s 10th anniversary. Last year 120,000 people from all across America and the world bought every last ticket to the three-day festival. This year’s festival will be another three-day event, running from May 20th – 22nd. It will take place at the MAPFRE Stadium in Columbus, Ohio. The lineup for this year’s festival includes: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Disturbed, Rob Zombie, Deftones, Shinedown, Five Finger Death Punch, Bring Me The Horizon, A Day To Remember, Megadeth, At The Drive-In, Lamb Of God, Sixx:A.M., Hellyeah, and Pennywise, as well as a number of up-and-coming acts.

Along with some of the rock and metal community’s biggest names and biggest names of their next generation, the Rock on the Range Festival will also feature some of the most well-known and respected comedians out there today. They include: Big Jay Oakerson, Nate Bargatze, Craig Gass, Bethany Dwyer, Madison Malloy and Grammy®–nominated comedian Jay Mohr in the Rock on the Range Rolling Rock Comedy Tent. There will even be a craft beer village featuring the top breweries from the region, new art installations, and activities special to the festival among so much more. ROTR co-executive producer Danny Wimmer discussed the sellout and what it says not only of the festival but of rock and metal as well in a recent interview. “Anyone who says, ‘Rock is Dead,’ hasn’t paid attention to Rock On The Range,” he said. “This festival has grown in each one of its 10 years, selling out in record time this year. Rock On The Range’s strength stands as a testament that rock fans are not only alive and well, they are flourishing.”

Whether or not audiences will be headed to the annual festival they can still get all of the latest information on the festival including performance times and more via its new mobile app. The app is free and can be downloaded via iTunes and Google Play.

Rock on the Range is produced by Danny Wimmer Presents, AEG Live, and MAPFRE Stadium. It is sponsored by Monster Energy, Jack Daniel’s, Zippo, The Music Experience, and Bud Light. More information on the Rock on the Range festival is available online along with all of its latest news at:

 

Website: http://www.RockOnTheRange.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/rockontherange

 

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.