In Flames Proves As Strong As Ever On Its Latest LP

Courtesy: Nuclear Blast Records

Veteran metal act In Flames has been crafting music for the metal masses for more than three decades, reaching audiences the world over with its music. This is the case even with so many changes in its lineup and label homes.  Now with the release of the band’s 14th album, Foregone, Friday through Nuclear Blast Records, the band’s popularity and relevance remains just as strong as ever.  This is due in part to its featured musical arrangements, which will be discussed shortly.  The lyrical themes that accompany the record’s musical content makes for its own share of interest, and will be discussed a little later.  The sequencing of that collective content rounds out the album’s most important elements and will also be discussed later.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of the record’s presentation.  All things considered they make Foregone a welcome addition to this year’s field of new hard rock and metal albums.

Foregone, the latest full-length studio recording from In Flames, is a strong new offering from the veteran metal act that is sure to engage and entertain the band’s established audiences and metal fans in general.  That is proven in part through the record’s musical arrangements.  From beginning to end, the arrangements featured throughout the record take audiences in a variety of directions.  They lift from the band’s existing catalog – in terms of stylistic approaches – at points while also presenting something less familiar at others.  That variety in sounds and styles makes the listening experience engaging and entertaining from the record’s beginning to its end.  Among the most notable of the more familiar style compositions is the record’s first full-length track, ‘State of Slow Decay.’  The heavy “chug” from the drums and bass here are immediate throwbacks to the band’s established death metal sound.  The shredding from the guitar and the creaming vocals add an equally familiar sort of thrash approach that audiences familiar with the band’s work will appreciate just as much.  The whole makes this arrangement so overly familiar while still maintaining the song’s own identity separate from the band’s existing works, making for all the more enjoyment and engagement.

Among the most notable of the album’s newer stylistic presentations is the metal ballad (if one could call it anything) that is presented late in the album in ‘Pure Light of Mind.’  The heavy, melodic metal composition is perhaps among the most mainstream style compositions that the band has ever crafted.  The juxtaposition of the contemplative verses and the more powerful choruses gives the song an almost power metal approach that is rare for In Flames to take on.  Even with that in mind, the song is an easy fit for so many mainstream active rock and metal radio programmer’s play list.  The closest possible comparison that can really be made here is to ‘Dawn of a New Day,’ which is featured in the band’s 2002 album Reroute to Remain.  Even in that case though, the comparison is loose at best.  That is a good thing because it shows once again the unique identity that this song has from the band’s existing work despite at least some subtle stylistic similarity.  It is still quite new territory for the band, showing even more, the importance of the musical content in this record.

While the musical content featured throughout Foregone is unquestionably important in its breadth, it is just one part of what makes the album worth hearing.  The lyrical content that accompanies the featured arrangements is largely very cynical in nature, or so it would seem in going through each song. Even with that seemingly overwhelming cynicism, much of the lyrical content still hits hard, such as in ‘The Great Deceiver.’  Front man Anders Friden pointed out in an interview with Metal Edge magazine, the song’s theme is a social commentary about how divided the world has become.  He said in the interview that the theme addresses people’s behavior online and how that has played into how divided the world has become, even citing a specific line in the song to explain the theme. 

“There’s a line that says, ‘Bend the truth to fit your opinion,’ and I feel that speaks a lot to the narrative happening online, between people, and nations, etc. today.”  Such a theme is quite familiar especially in the world’s current age.  Sadly, it is a theme that remains as relevant as ever because of that reality.  That that end, it makes this just one strong example of what makes the record’s lyrical themes so important to its presentation.

‘Meet Your Maker’ is another notable example of what makes Foregone’s lyrical themes so important to its presentation.  Friden said during an interview with well-known online music outlet Blabbermouth, this song “became the song that set the tone in terms of what we were aiming for sonically and well as thematically.”  Noting the content here, that comment makes sense, especially in looking at the lyrics.  The lyrics state in the song’s lead verse and chorus, “Meet your maker/Say something that makes sense/These are your last words/So make them worth the wait/Meet your maker/It’s time to set things straight/These are your last words/So make them count or it’s too late/In time we all disappear/We’re pushed to the edge/The countdown has begun/At the end of the masquerade/Your time’s up/Now there’s hell to pay/It’s only down from here/You think you have a choice/But there’s no other way.”  This is just this critic’s interpretation, but this opening statement comes across as a reminder that we all live only a certain length of time, so when our time comes, we need to make sure we go out on a positive note, so to speak. We have to make sure when we go, we haven’t left any hurt feelings among ourselves and others and that people remember our final words as impacting and important.  If in fact this is the message delivered here, then it is a rarely delivered message, making it interesting in its own right.  If other acts have delivered such message, then the fashion in which it is delivered here makes it just as impressive and unique.  Keeping that in mind, it is just one more example of what makes the album’s lyrical themes so important to the record’s presentation.

‘Pure Light Of Mind’ is one more example of the importance of the album’s lyrical themes.  That is because in this case, this is a theme that In Flames has rarely if ever presented.  Instead of all of the cynical and nihilistic sort of commentaries delivered in much of the record, this song’s theme is much more positive.  It seems to deliver a message of hope and some optimism.  This is inferred in the song’s lead verse and chorus, which state, “A perfect storm in a turbulent time/I know my days are numbered/But life seems to end up right/You by my side/My guiding light/Wave goodbye with tearful eyes/Wait for me/I won’t be long/I wanna tell you before I die/I walked the mile/And I’d do it again/The darkness that became me/You’re the reason I’m still breathing/I walked the mile and I’d do it again.”  The seeming positive message continues in the song’s second verse, which states, “When I was about to break down/You took the car/Heading down south/Dim the lights/I’m going to panic/It’s settled/This is forever.”  In the song’s bridge, Friden’s subject begs that other person to “Take away my pain/Take away my sorrow/Save me from tomorrow/Save me!”  This comes across as someone who is showing an appreciation and need for that emotional support from someone else.  Listening to the song’s unique musical arrangement, that inference becomes even stronger.  Hopefully the interpretation here is at least close to being correct.  Regardless, the seemingly optimistic message here is definitely apart from the rest of the themes in this record and from so much of In Flames’ works.  To that end, it shows yet again, how important the lyrical content is to this album.  It shows that growth from the band, lyrically speaking.  When it is considered along with the other themes addressed here and with the rest of the album’s lyrical content, the whole makes fully clear why the album’s overall lyrical content is so important to its presentation.

Keeping in mind the importance of the lyrical and musical content spread across Foregone, it is clear that the record’s general content is positive.  That overall content is just part of what makes the record worth hearing.  The sequencing thereof is just as important to the album’s presentation as the content itself.  The brief instrumental opener, ‘The Beginning of All Things That Will End’ is a surprise way to start the record, what with its classical guitar style approach.  The immediate, heavy contrast of ‘State of Slow Decay,’ which immediately follows makes it (and the second track) all the more intriguing.  To go from such polar opposite extremes so quickly is certain to engage listeners.  The heaviness continues through the next song, ‘Meet Your Maker’ before the band turns more into its equally familiar melodic metal approach in ‘Bleeding Out.’  This changes things up just enough to make for its own share of interest, again.  The band continues to offer more unique changes in the sequencing in the album’s two-part title track, going from more extreme metal style and sound to more of the melodic metal approach in the second half of the song.  ‘Pure Light of Mind’ offers even more of that melodic metal approach in ‘Pure Light of Mind’ before the band goes back to the days of, say the band’s 2000 album, Clayman in ‘The Great Deceiver.’  The stylistic differences continue from that point on to the album’s end, in each arrangement, offering just as much to keep listeners engaged and entertained.  Simply put, from beginning to end the sequencing of the record’s overall content does just as much to ensure listeners’ engagement and entertainment as the content itself.  Considering this, the whole of Foregone becomes a work that is certain to impress In Flames’ established audience base and metal fans in general.

Foregone, the latest album from In Flames, is an interesting new offering from the band.  The record’s interest comes in part through its featured musical arrangements.  The arrangements present influences from the band’s existing catalog while also showing hints of perhaps the band’s future.  That whole gives audiences reason enough to hear the album.  The lyrical themes featured throughout the album are of their own interest.  That is because they offer their own variance within their commentaries.  The sequencing of the overall content puts the finishing touch to the whole, ensuring in its own way, audiences will remain engaged.  Each item examined is important in its own way to the whole of the album.  All things considered they make Foregone a welcome addition to this year’s field of new hard rock and metal albums.

Foregone is available now through Nuclear Blast Records.  More information on the album is available along with all of In Flames’ latest news at:




To keep up with the latest entertainment reviews and news, go online to and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at

Louder Than Life Festival Lineup Announced

Courtesy: Ashton-Magnuson Media

The Louder Than Life Festival will return to Louisville, KY this year with an expansive lineup of acts.

The festival, scheduled to take place Sept. 22-25 at the Highland Festival Grounds at KY Expo Center in Louisville, KY, will be headlined by Red Hot Chili Peppers, Nine Inch Nails, Slipknot, and KISS. The four-day festival will also feature performances from bands, such as Bloodywood, Anti-Flag, and Superbloom. The KY Expo Center is located at 937 Phillips Ln. in Louisville, KY.

The festival’s full lineup is noted below. Tickets are available here. Weekend general admission passes start at $249.50 plus fees. Weekend VIP passes start at $629.50 plus fees. A limited number of Weekend Top Shelf VIP passes is still available for $1,329.50 plus fees.

General admission single day passes start at $99.50 plus fees. Single day VIP passes start at $295.50 plus fees. Layaway options are available through March 31 for $10, with payments made through July.

A trailer for the forthcoming annual festival is streaming.

The current Louder Than Life lineup is as follows (subject to change):

Thursday, September 22: Nine Inch Nails, Bring Me The Horizon, Evanescence, Halestorm, Tenacious D, Yungblud, Highly Suspect, Ministry, Nothing More, Baroness, Spiritbox, Apocalyptica, Dorothy, Don Broco, New Years Day, Plush, Lilith Czar, Maggie Lindemann, Taipei Houston, The Dead Deads, Mothica, Superbloom, Eva Under Fire, Oxymorrons

Friday, September 23: Slipknot, Shinedown, Lamb Of God, Mastodon, In This Moment, Meshuggah, Clutch, Jinjer, GWAR, In Flames, Helmet, POORSTACY, Crown The Empire, DED, All Good Things, Amigo The Devil, Vended, Mike’s Dead, If I Die First, Orbit Culture, The Luka State, Ego Kill Talent, The Native Howl, Archetypes Collide

Saturday, September 24: KISS, Rob Zombie, Alice Cooper, Chevelle, Ghostemane, Jerry Cantrell, Dance Gavin Dance, Theory of a Deadman, Body Count, Sevendust, Mammoth WVH, We Came As Romans, Airbourne, Cherry Bombs, Ill Niño, Tetrarch, Nita Strauss, Against The Current, Wargasm, Trash Boat, Shaman’s Harvest, Solence, Dropout Kings, Bloodywood

Sunday, September 25: Red Hot Chili Peppers, Alice In Chains, Incubus, Papa Roach, The Pretty Reckless, Architects, Bad Religion, Action Bronson, The Struts, Jelly Roll, Dirty Honey, Anti-Flag, The Joy Formidable, Bayside, The Warning, Royal & The Serpent, caroles daughter, Radkey, The Mysterines, Crown Lands, AEIR, The Alive, As You Were

The Louder Than Life Festival is produced by Danny Wimmer Presents. The festival debuted in 2014 and expanded to four days in 2021.

More information on the 2022 Louder Than Life Festival is available along with all of the festival’s latest news at:




To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to and “Like” it. Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at

Trivium Debuts New Single, ‘In The Court Of The Dragon,’ Companion Video

Courtesy: Roadrunner Records

Trivium opened the weekend with its first new music in more than a year.

The band premiered its new single, ‘In The Court of the Dragon‘ and its companion video Friday. The pair’s premiere comes more than a year after the debut of the band’s then latest album, What The Dead Men Say.

The musical arrangement featured in ‘In The Court of the Dragon’ is an intense, heavy, guitar driven composition. Its thrash stylistic approach and sound lends it to comparison to works from Slipknot just as much as from Slayer. As an added note, Isahn (Emperor) composed the orchestration for the single’s opening.

The lyrical content featured alongside that musical arrangement is taken from a classic story, according to front man Matt Heafy.

“The title of the song came from a short story by Robert W. Chambers,” he said. “The story is filled with dread and uncertainty, and that felt fitting for the times we’ve all been living in for the last year. Rather than a direct re-telling, we decided to go a different route and build our own narrative around the music that we were creating.”

The video for Trivium’s new single is a nearly 10-minute presentation that tells the story discussed by Heafy. Even more interesting is its finale, which seems to connect back to the video for one of the singles featured in What The Dead Men Say. That revelation will be left for audiences to discover for themselves.

In other news, Trivium is scheduled to return to the road this summer with Megadeth, In Flames, and Lamb of God. The band’s tour is scheduled to launch Aug. 20 in Austin, TX and to run almost a month and a half, winding down Oct. 2 in Quebec City, QC. The tour features performances in cities, such as Danville, VA; Concord, CA and Boise, ID.

The band’s tour schedule is noted below.

8/20 — Austin, TX — Germania Insurance Amphitheater
8/21 — Irving, TX — The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory
8/22 — Woodlands, TX — The Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion presented by Huntsman
8/24 — El Paso, TX — Don Haskins Center
8/25 — Albuquerque, NM — Isleta Amphitheater
8/26 – Wichita, KS – Cotillion Ballroom (headline)
8/27 — Denver, CO — Ball Arena
8/29 — Phoenix, AZ — Arizona Federal Theatre
8/31 — Reno, NV — Reno Events Center
9/1 — Irvine, CA — FivePoint Amphitheatre
9/2 — Concord, CA — Concord Pavilion
9/4 — Portland, OR — Moda Center
9/5 — Auburn, WA — White River Amphitheatre
9/6 – Boise, ID, Revolution Concert House (headline)
9/9 — Tinley Park, IL — Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre – Chicago
9/10 – Pittsburgh, PA — Stage AE w/ Black Label Society
9/11 — Danville, VA — Blue Ridge Festival*
9/12 — Wantagh, NY — Northwell Health at Jones Beach Theater
9/13 — Boston, MA — Leader Bank Pavilion
9/15 — Camden, NJ — BB&T Pavilion
9/16 — Holmdel, NJ — PNC Bank Arts Center
9/18 — Noblesville, IN — Ruoff Music Center
9/19 — Clarkston, MI — DTE Energy Music Theatre
9/20 — Cincinnati, OH — PNC Pavilion
9/22 — Rogers, AR — Walmart AMP
9/24 — Mount Pleasant, MI — Soaring Eagle Casino Amphitheatre
9/25 – Des Moines, IA – Knotfest Iowa*
9/26 — St. Louis, MO — Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre – St. Louis
9/28 — Minneapolis, MN — Armory
9/30 — Toronto, ON — Budweiser Stage
10/1 — Laval, QC — Place Bell
10/2 — Quebec City, QC — Centre Videotron
*Festival Date featuring all 4 bands

More information about Trivium’s new single and tour schedule is available along with all of Trivium’s latest news and more at:




To keep up with the latest entertainment reviews and news, go online to and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at

Lamb Of God Debuts ‘Ghost Shaped People’ Video

Courtesy: Epic Records

Lamb of God kicked off the weekend by debuting a new music video.

The band debuted the video for its single ‘Ghost Shaped People‘ Friday. The song is featured in the forthcoming re-issue of the band’s 2020 self-titled album, which is scheduled for release March 26 through Epic Records.

The video for LOG’s new single is a full black and white presentation. It features a large screen set atop a large mound that is set against what looks like a post-apocalyptic setting. According to information provided about the video, the additional imagery used in the video is meant to tell the story of a man’s journey into the afterlife.

‘Ghost Shaped People’ is available to stream through a variety of outlets. The song’s musical arrangement is a blistering, guitar-driven track that will appeal to longtime Lamb of God fans while its companion lyrical content comes across as a statement about human nature. Front man Randy Blythe even asks in the song’s chorus, “How far are you willing to go/What is the cost of victory.”

The expanded packaging for LOG’s self-titled re-issue will feature the band’s original album along with two additional discs, one of which will feature the full audio of the band’s first livestream of 2020. That performance featured Lamb of God performing its latest album in whole along with four encores, ‘Ruin,’ ‘Contractor,’ ‘512’ and its brand new song ‘The Death of Us.’ The song in question was crafted for the soundtrack to the movie Bill & Ted Face the Music.

The second bonus disc featured in the forthcoming re-issue is a DVD that contains the full audio-visual presentation of the band’s noted livestream concert. It should be noted that the DVD will only be available with the re-issue’s physical releases and not digital. A trailer for the DVD and overall re-issue is streaming here.

‘Ghost Shaped People’ is just one of the bonus tracks featured in the new re-issue of Lamb of God. Along with that song, the re-issue also features the bonus track ‘Hyperthermic/Accelerate.’

Pre-orders for Lamb of God’s forthcoming re-issue are open. The record’s track listing for each of its platforms is noted below.

The complete track listing for Lamb Of God Deluxe Edition is:

Disc 1

Lamb Of God Original Album + 2 Bonus Tracks

1.    Memento Mori

2.    Checkmate

3.    Gears

4.    Reality Bath

5.    New Colossal Hate

6.    Resurrection Man

7.    Poison Dream feat. Jamey Jasta

8.    Routes feat. Chuck Billy

9.    Bloodshot Eyes

10.  On The Hook

11.  Ghost Shaped People

12.  Hyperthermic/Accelerate

Disc 2

Lamb Of God – Live From Richmond, VA

1.    Memento Mori (Live)

2.    Checkmate (Live)

3.    Gears (Live)

4.    Reality Bath (Live)

5.    New Colossal Hate (Live)

6.    Resurrection Man (Live)

7.    Poison Dream (Live)

8.    Routes (Live)

9.    Bloodshot Eyes (Live)

10.  On The Hook (Live)

11.  Contractor (Live)

12.  Ruin (Live)

13.  The Death of Us (Live)

14.  512

Disc 3

Lamb Of God – Live From Richmond, VA DVD

1.    Memento Mori 

2.    Checkmate

3.    Gears

4.    Reality Bath

5.    New Colossal Hate

6.    Resurrection Man

7.    Poison Dream1.

8.    Routes

9.    Bloodshot Eyes

10.  On The Hook

11.  Contractor

12.  Ruin

13.  The Death of Us

14.  512

Digital copies will contain only Disc 1 and Disc 2.

Lamb Of God – Live From Richmond, VA vinyl track listing:

Side 1

1.    Memento Mori

2.    Checkmate

3.    Gears

4.    Reality Bath

5.    New Colossal Hate

Side 2

1.    Resurrection Man

2.    Poison Dream

3.    Routes

4.  Bloodshot Eyes

5.    On The Hook

In related news, Lamb of God’s tour with Megadeth is scheduled to launch in July following delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. Trivium and In Flames are scheduled to provide support throughout the tour. The UK leg of Lamb of God’s tour with Kreator will tentatively follow in November and December. Tickets for each tour are available here.

More information on Lamb of God’s new singles, album, upcoming live dates, news and more is available online now at:




To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at

Trumbiten Debuts New Single, ‘Fear Me’

Courtesy: O’Donnell Media Group

Independent metal band Trumbiten debuted its new single this week.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at

Jinjer, Judas Priest Added to Live Streaming Concert Series

Cosa Nostra PR is continuing its live streaming concert series this month with two more concerts.

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

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

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

Judas Priest’s performance is scheduled to stream 3 p.m ET on July 17 through’s ongoing concert series has already featured performances from Slipknot, Lamb of God, Trivium, Behemoth, Amon Amarth, Anthrax, Kreator, King Diamond, Carnifex, Suffocation, Suicide Silence, and In Flames.  The concerts have helped raise money to charities that help with COVID-19 relief efforts.

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






To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at


NeverWake Debuts ‘Trapped Inside’ Lyric Video

Courtesy: Melodic Revolution Records/O’Donnell Media Group

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

The band debuted the lyric video for its new single ‘Trapped Inside‘ Friday.  The video takes audiences on a through a house that serves as the top of a person’s body, its halls serving as the visualization for a person’s mind.  As audiences are taken through those halls and even around the outside of the house, the lyrics continue to be presented.

Front man Johnn DiCarlo discussed the song’s lyrical theme in a recent interview.

“When dealing with anxiety and depression every single day, there are a lot of thoughts and emotions that keep you circling around and around, trapped in your head,” he said.  “One thought makes you turn to another, which turns to another, etc.  Pretty soon you’re full circle back where you started. It’s hard to break that cycle.  With “Trapped Inside” we show those walls that keep us in place and we tear them the fuck down. The song is a rebellion against everything that keeps one inside their own head. This song stood out to each one of us because it has a lot of power, but it has a melodic way of ensnaring someone. It captures people in a way that they can relate. But when it gets to the bridge, people aren’t simply just relating to the concept, they’re a part of the rebellion.”

Along with crafting the song’s lyrics, DiCarlo also was the creative force behind the song’s lyric video.  He also discussed the video’s creation.

“I don’t like classifying myself as just a musician,” he said. “No one is ever just one thing. I like to have my hands in a lot of different arts; I like to create. That’s why I decided to go full force in creating the art and lyric video for “Trapped Inside.” If creating music is therapeutic to me, creating a 3D world around a song is straight up medicine. I was able to take the concept of the song and push it so much further. In a way I feel like that’s what it may take nowadays. Whether we like it or not, we are getting out of the age of print. Album art only goes as far as what your spotify single picture looks like. To make this 3D world for this song helped me pair artwork back with music in a new way that can be appreciated by everyone in the new world.”

The musical arrangement featured in ‘Trapped Inside’ is a heavy, metalcore style composition that will appeal to fans of bands, such as In Flames, Killswitch  Engage and Avenged Sevenfold with its clean vocals and screaming, and its heavy, melodic guitar lines and pummeling, precise time keeping.

The debut of NeverWake’s new single comes on the heels of a month-long tour with The Veer Union.  The band is working on a new EP.  It is unknown if the as-yet-untitled record will feature the band’s new single.

Audiences can keep up with the latest developments on the band’s EP and all of its latest news at:



Facebook: http://www.facebook.como/neverwakemusic



To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at


In Flames Announces Release Date, Specs For ‘Clayman’ 20th Anniversary Re-Issue

Courtesy: Nuclear Blast Records

In Flames’ album Clayman is getting the re-issue treatment.

Nuclear Blast Records will re-issue the album Aug. 28.    The re-issue is in celebration of the 20th anniversary of the album’s original release. In anticipation of the re-issue, the band debuted the lyric video for the re-worked take of ‘Clayman‘ Friday.

Front man Anders Friden discussed the forthcoming re-issue in a recent interview.

“This record changed our career in a number of ways,” he said.  “Being the 20th anniversary this year, we had to do something massive for the fans. Going back into the studio to re-record some of the original tracks took us right back in time to when we first recorded them. Every detail of the new artwork and visuals was deeply thought out keeping in mind what the Jesterheads would want to see most. This one’s for you. Thank you for 20 years of Clayman.”

Ted Jensen (Pantera, Deftones, Gojira) remastered Clayman‘s re-issue.  Howard Benson (My Chemical Romance, Motorhead, Sepultura) also had a hand in the album’s reissue, producing four re-recorded songs that were featured in the album’s original release — ‘Only For The Weak,’ ‘Bullet Ride,’ ‘Pinball Map’ and ‘Clayman.’  Chris Lord-Alge (Green day, Rob Zombie) mixed the songs.

Along with boasting for re-worked songs, the upcoming re-issue of Clayman will also feature new artwork in a 16-page booklet, and new instrumental medley.

The album’s re-issue will be available on CD digipack, digital and 2xLP vinyl.  the vinyl release features an oversized booklet, 11 remastered tracks on a 12-inch vinyl and five bonus tracks on a 10-inch vinyl.

Pre-orders are open now for the 20th anniversary re-issue of Clayman.

Before the re-issue is released, the band will release the Clayman EP digitally on July 24.  The EP will feature all four of the re-worked songs that will be featured in the Clayman album re-issue, and the noted instrumental medley, ‘Themes and Variations in D-Minor.’  The EPis for those audiences who prefer just to have the new material itself instead of buying the whole album again just to have the bonus content.

As an additional celebration of the album’s upcoming re-issue, the band has partnered with Knotfest organizers to stream the band’s performance at the 2018 Wacken Open Air Festival.  The concert will stream tonight at 8 p.m. EDT.

More information on the upcoming re-issue of Clayman is available along with all of In Flames’ latest news at:






To keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews, go online to and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at

Corroded Will Leave Listeners Feeling Anything But Bitter On Its Latest LP

Courtesy: Despotz Records

Hard rock outfit Corroded released its latest full-length studio recording this week, and the album, Bitter, is another strong new offering from the veteran Swedish band.  Front man Jens Westlin explained the album’s title “comes from observing how the social climate is around the world right now…Everyone’s so dissatisfied and thinks that everyone else’s life is so much better than theirs, and if something goes wrong, it’s always someone else’s fault.  As a result of this, all power hungry leaders in this world thrive on the dissatisfaction of the people and gain power that way.”  He added that these views are what inspired the band’s new album both musically, and lyrically.  The band’s reaction to that situation is on full display early on in the form of the song ‘Cross,’ which will be discussed shortly.  ‘Scream,’ which comes later in the album’s run is another standout addition to Bitter, that shows quite well, the band’s response to everything going on.  It will be discussed a little later.  ‘Drown,’ which comes even later in the album’s run is another notable addition to the album’s overall statement about the world’s current social and political climate.  It will also be discussed later.  Each of the three songs noted here are key in their own way to the whole of Bitter.  When considered along with the other nine songs featured in the album not directly noted here, the end result is a powerful new offering from Corroded that will light a new fire within listeners and leave them feeling anything but bitter.

Corroded’s fifth full-length studio recording Bitter is another strong new offering from the Swedish hard rock outfit.  The new, 12-song record, which is the band’s second for Sweden-based Despotz Records, shows from start to finish, that the quartet can easily hold its own against its more well-known hard rock and metal counterparts.  This is proven early on in the form of ‘Cross.’  The song’s up-tempo, guitar-driven musical arrangement helps to support that statement.  The arrangement conjures thoughts of Five Finger Death Punch, Soil, Dry Kill Logic and other similar acts.  The fiery energy exuded through the arrangement, coupled with Westlin’s growling vocals does a commendable job of illustrating the anger and frustration that Westlin attempts to present in the song’s lyrical content.

That seeming mix of strong emotions is inferred as he sings, “Our mistakes…they have never ever been this clear/All the pain/And the misery/Every word that was said out of fear/Every thorn/In the side/The suffering we had to endure/We never stopped/It isn’t easy/There will never ever be a cure/Every breath that we take/Is a waste of the air we possess/All the s*** that we give….I won’t be nailed upon your cross/I will not take the pain for you/It’s time to own your mistakes/It’s time for you to fall.”  Westlin’s fire hardly dies in the song’s second verse as he sings of having to carry someone else’s agony and misery, and refusing to do so any longer before returning to the chorus’ powerful message pointing the finger back at the proverbial stone casters and finger pointers.  Guitarist Thomas Andersson, bassist Bjarne Elvsgard and drummer Per Solang are to be commended in their own right for their work throughout the song, and especially in its bridge as they work together to help illustrate that feeling of emotional strain that one goes through when one is blamed for something that happened to someone else.  Instead of being the fiery work that is exhibited through the rest of the song, it presents a certain vibe of someone trying to get over those feelings of self-guilt and realizing people cause their own problems in many cases.  It is a brief moment in the bigger picture of the song, but powerful in its own right.  When it considered along with Westlin’s unapologetic lyrical content and the rest of the song’s unflinching arrangement, the whole proves to be an unquestionably forceful response to that bitterness of which Westlin spoke, which led to much of the album’s creation.  It is just one of the album’s most standout entries.  ‘Scream,’ which comes later in the album’s run, is another notable addition to the album.

In regards to its musical arrangement, ‘Scream’ is a work that is certain to appeal to thrash metal purists out there.  Again, the similarities to Dry Kill Logic are front and center here.  At the same time, one can also argue influences from the likes of Overkill, Exodus, Anthrax and other similar acts, thanks again to the collective work of Andersson, Elvsgard and Solang.

The energy exuded through this thrash-style work does its own commendable job of illustrating the urgency in the song’s lyrics; an urgency that seems to center on the issue of self-determination and not letting the currently bitter state of the world bring one down.  This is inferred as Westlin sings with his band mates in the song’s chorus, “Scream/Until your lungs give out/Don’t roll over and die/Shout/Until everything is said/Don’t give up…”  This positive message is coupled with an equally positive vibe in the song’s verses.  Westlin sings in the song’s lead verse, “Inhale/Let everything around go down/Find a moment of peace/React/The perfect storm is here right now/You are the center of its eye.”  Westlin’s message is relatively clear in this verse, especially considering the song’s chorus.  He is saying that we create the storm that surrounds us, and the way to survive that storm is to find our inner peace, to jet let everything out, not hold it in.  he even comes right out in the song’s second verse and states, “Exhale/Let matters fall right into place/Find a calm inside yourself.”  He goes on to say, “you are the center of the mass.”  Yet again, here we have a relatively clear statement of how we are the source and solution to all of our problems.  This is a positive message, from which plenty of listeners can and hopefully will take some enlightenment.  When it is coupled with that previously discussed musical arrangement, the whole is a song that is therapeutic in the best way possible, and yet another wonderful response to the negativity that is polluting the world right now.  It is far from the last example of the album’s clear ability to respond to the world’s current climate.  ‘Drown’ is yet another example of how well the band has responded to everything going on around the globe.

‘Drown’ is the penultimate addition to Bitter.  Musically, this song is another interesting composition.  The verses are once again up-tempo, guitar-drive, adrenaline-fueled sections.  The choruses however, are far more melodic.  What is interesting is that the song does not lose any of its energy in the choruses.  It just changes style, in turn, keeping the work moving forward.  The song’s bridge hints at some 80s influences through Andersson’s guitar work, which is not an entirely bad thing.  Of course, the song’s musical arrangement is just one part of what makes it stand out.  Its lyrical content leads it to stand out just as much as its musical content.

Westlin sings in the song’s lead verse, “Wish I could break the spell that binds us here/You know to each his own…Just go and do/As you please…It must be done my way/It must be done your way.  Some of his wording is difficult to decipher without a lyrics sheet to reference, but the seeming message becomes partially clear.  Later in the song’s nearly five-minute song, he goes on to sing, of looking back on a chain that has been broken and will not leave any marks.  This is just this critic’s own take, but it would seem that Westlin is speaking metaphorically here to address social control, with the chain being that control, broken.  That would explain Westlin’s earlier statement of “It must be done my way/It must be done your way.”  There is that problem of everyone wanting things in life their way, but we as a people do not have to let it be one person’s way or another, but rather our own way, regardless of what everyone else says.  We can respect others’ ways, but we do not have to live by those ways.  That goes back to the initial statement of “Wish I could break that spell that binds us here/You know to each his own.” It all seems to come together in a statement of not giving in to what everyone says one should do and be.  Again, this should not be taken as the only interpretation, but merely that of this critic.  Hopefully this critic is at least somewhere in the ballpark with that interpretation, as it would seem to be another response to the world’s negativity, as addressed by Westlin about the album’s overall theme.  When it is considered along with the seeming messages presented in ‘Scream,’ Cross’ and the rest of the album’s offerings, the whole of Bitter becomes a work in whole that will leave listeners anything but bitter.

Corroded’s latest full-length studio recording Bitter is a record that is certain to leave listeners feeling anything but bitter about the world after they listen from start to finish, to the 12-song record.  That is because of the messages presented in the songs, which come across as various responses to the world’s bitterness – responses that are in fact not overly bitter themselves.  That is evidenced early on in ‘Cross,’ which points the finger back at the finger pointers, and again later in the album’s run in ‘Scream,’ which seems to encourage people to get their negativity out (of course in a positive way), and even later seems to encourage people to embrace their personal identity, rather than give in to social control in ‘Drown.’  These are just some of the songs featured in this record that clearly address everything going on in the world.  The Type O Negative-esque ‘Black’ seems to address’ people’s self-imposed misery while the In Flames-styled ‘Breathing’ comes across as sending a message of not giving up even in the most dire situations.  The old-school metal style work that is ‘Testament’ is a defiant anthem that comes across as encouraging people to stand up for themselves against all odds.  Again, this is all this critic’s own interpretation.  Hopefully it is somewhere in the ballpark in each case, including that of the songs more directly discussed.  If indeed this critic’s interpretations are right, then again, this record proves that much more to be quite the successful offering from Corroded, and easily one of the year’s first great hard rock/metal records.  It is available now.  More information on Bitter is available online now along with all of Corroded’s latest news and more at:










To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news, go online to and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep up with the latest sports and entertainment reviews and news in the Phil’s Picks blog at

2017 Rock On The Range Festival Lineup Announced

Courtesy: Danny Wimmer Presents/AEG Live

Courtesy: Danny Wimmer Presents/AEG Live

The lineup for the 2017 Rock on the Range Festival has been announced, and once again it has proven to be quite the collection of acts.

The three-day festival will be headlined by Metallica, Soundgarden and Korn.  It will feature more than 50 bands over the course of that time along with some of the country’s top comics at the festival’s Rock on the Range Rolling Rock Comedy Tent.

The lineup for the 2017 Rock on the Range Festival includes: Metallica, Soundgarden, Korn, The Offspring, Volbeat, Primus, Bush, Chevelle, Papa Roach, Seether, Coheed & Cambria, Alter Bridge, The Pretty Reckless, Taking Back Sunday, Thrice, Amon Amarth, Pierce The Veil, Sum 41, Skillet, Dillinger Escape Plan, In Flames, Gojira, Biffy Clyro, Motionless In White, Nothing More, Beartooth, Starset, Every Time I Die, The Story So Far, Deafheaven, Zakk Sabbath, Rival Sons, The Amity Affliction, Attila, Norma Jean, Suicide Silence, Whitechapel, I Prevail, Turnstile, Dinosaur Pile-Up, Red Fang, Dorothy, Kyng, Radkey, As Lions, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, Sylar, Fire From The Gods, Badflower, Wage War, Goodbye June, Cover Your Tracks, DED, Bleeker, Royal Republic, Mother Feather, Aeges and One Less Reason.

Rock on the Range—fueled by Monster Energy—is billed as America’s largest and most acclaimed rock festival.  The festival will also feature in 2017 “The Music Experience,” art installations, and unique on-site activities over the course of the festival’s three days.

Tickets for the 2016 festival sold out more than two months in advance of the festival.  It marked the fourth consecutive year the festival has sold out in advance.

Weekend Field, new Weekend Field VIP, Weekend Stadium and a limited number of Weekend Stadium 4-packs are available now for purchase.  A layaway option is also available for concert-goers.  That option allows audiences to split the cost of their ticket/ticket packages into four separate monthly payments.

Fans can get a pre-sale password for Weekend Field VIP, Weekend Field GA, Weekend Stadium GA and Weekend Stadium GA 4-packs on the official Rock on the Range website, Facebook page and Twitter page.  The ticket prices are listed below.


  • Weekend Field VIP: starting at $349.50* + fees
  • Weekend Field GA: starting at $199.50* + fees
  • Weekend Stadium GA: starting at $99.50* + fees
  • Weekend Stadium GA Ticket 4-Pack: $380.00 + fees
  • * Phase One prices listed
  • *** Ticket prices automatically move to the next price level once the allotment sells out ***

General on-sale for tickets is Friday, Dec. 2 at 10 a.m. EST.  Tickets will be available online at the festival’s website, at Ticketmaster locations and the MAPFRE Stadium box office.

Audiences who want an even more special concert experience can purchase the new Uber Ranger Camping Package.  The package includes amenities for four people such as luxury RV on a double campsite at the Ohio Expo North Campground (May 18 – 21), a dedicated concierge with golf cart shuttle, 4 Weekend VIP Field Admission Tickets, a backstage tour, access to the stadium club (with catered lunch and dinner), access to the Side Stage Viewing Platform, access to the VIP Lounge and more.  More information on the new Uber Ranger Camping Package is available here.

Rock on The Range celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2016.  More than 120,000 people attended the festival from around the world.  As part of its 10th anniversary celebration, Columbus, OH mayor Andrew J. Ginther and the Columbus, OH city council presented festival organizers with awards of recognition.  A resolution was also announced from the Franklin County Board of Commissioners acknowledging the festival’s economic impact on the city.

The commissioners pointed out in their resolution pointed out the festival brought in more than $140 million for the city over the course of its ten years in the city.

Rock on the Range is produced by Danny Wimmer Presents, AEG Live and MAPFRE Stadium.  It is supported by Monster Energy, Bud Light and Zippo.  They and other partners will feature interactive experiences, meet & greets, and other special fan engagement opportunities throughout the festival.

More information on the 2017 Rock on the Range Festival is available online now at:










To keep up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews, go online to and “Like” it.  Fans can always keep  up with the latest sports and entertainment news and reviews in the Phil’s Picks blog at