Sorcerer Takes On Saxon Classic For Its Latest Single

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

For the third time in as many months, Sorcerer is taking on a classic rock song for its latest single.

The band premiered its take of Saxon’s ‘Crusader‘ Friday along with a companion video. The song’s premiere follows premieres of the band’s cover of Black Sabbath’s ‘When Death Calls‘ last month and its cover of Rainbow’s ‘Gates of Babylon‘ in September.’

Front man Anders Engberg had high praise for Saxon as he talked about the band during a recent interview.

“For me, Saxon, they have always been there, ever since I started listening to heavy metal, and I had the luck to tour with these guys with my old band, Lion’s Share,” he said.

Drummer Richard Evensand expanded on Engberg’s statements during the interview.

“It [Saxon] was the first band I started to really follow as a teenager and it still is one of my favorite bands today,” said Evensand. “For me Saxon equals energy and long tom rolls… in fact more than long tom rolls; mega tom rolls perhaps.”

Added Evensand, “Nigel Glockner has really influenced my play as a drummer. You can imagine that I was immediately in favor of making a Sorcerer rendition of “Crusader”. It’s the most powerful song there is on this planet! Peter Hallgren did an excellent job on the arrangement. We hope everyone loves our version as much as we loved making it!”

Coming in at approximately seven minutes in length, Sorcerer’s rendition of ‘Crusader’ is shorter than its source material by almost a full minute. That is likely due to the fact that Sorcerer’s take on the song does not feature the sounds of battle featured in the original composition. Those sounds take up approximately one minute five seconds of the song’s original one minute, 40 second run time.

There are also some other sound effects thrown in along with some other items that change things up between the two versions. Among the most notable of the other differences is the richness in the sound from Sorcerer’s take. It is much more full whereas the production of the original conjures thoughts of Anthrax and Metallica from that era.

Sorcerer’s take on ‘Crusader’ is available now through all digital outlets. More information on Sorcerer’s take on ‘Crusader’ is available along with all of Sorcerer’s latest news at:

Websitehttps://www.sorcererdoom.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/sorcererdoom

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

Killswitch Engage Announces Re-Scheduled Dates With August Burns Red, Light The Torch

Courtesy: Atom Splitter PR/Metal Blade Records

As progress in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic continues, Killswitch Engage is trying its hand at hitting the road again.

The band was forced to postpone the spring 2020 leg of its “Atonement Tour” last year due to the impacts of the pandemic, but now the band has announced it will try things out again this winter. The announcement was made Tuesday through a news release.

Front man Jesse Leach was upbeat as he talked about getting the tour running again in a prepared statement.

“The long wait is finally over,” said Leach. “We worked very hard to carefully piece this tour back together properly. After the tour was shut down two days in when it started in 2020, we are bringing it back!  We are honored and stoked to have August Burns Red and Howard Jones [former KsE frontman] and the boys in Light the Torch along to make this an ‘all killer, no filler’ lineup.”

Jones shared Leach’s excitement about the tour.

Jones echoes the sentiment, saying, “FINALLY! We get to pick up where we left off on the Atonement tour with KsE and ABR!,” he said. “We couldn’t be more excited to resume with the same lineup, and additional dates have been added so don’t miss this noisy party. Now, stop reading this and get your tickets. GO! This will be a tour to remember and you do not want to miss it!”

According to the provided information, the re-scheduled tour is set to launch Jan. 28 in Pittsburgh, PA and to run through March 12, bringing the band back to the Steel City to close things out. The tour also features performances in cities nationwide, such as Raleigh, NC; Riverside, CA and Boise, ID.

The tour’s schedule is noted below. August Burns Red and Light The Torch (fronted by Jones) are scheduled to serve as support for the tour. Tickets are available here.

KILLSWITCH ENGAGE ON TOUR:
WITH AUGUST BURNS RED + LIGHT THE TORCH:

1/28 — Pittsburgh, PA — Stage AE
1/29 — Silver Spring, MD — Fillmore
1/31 — Stroudsburg, PA — Sherman Theater
2/1 — Montreal, QC — M-Telus
2/2 — Toronto, ON — Rebel
2/4 — Wallingford, CT — The Dome
2/5 — Portland, ME — State Theater
2/6 — Boston, MA — House of Blues
2/8 — New York, NY — Terminal 5
2/10 — Raleigh, NC — Ritz
2/11 — Atlanta, GA — Tabernacle
2/12 — Orlando, FL — House of Blues
2/14 — Houston, TX — House of Blues
2/15 — Dallas, TX — SouthSide Ballroom
2/17 — Tempe, AZ — The Marquee
2/18 — Los Angeles, CA — Wiltern
2/19 — Las Vegas, NV — Brooklyn Bowl
2/21 — Ventura, CA — Ventura Theater
2/22 — Riverside, CA — Municipal Auditorium
2/23 — San Francisco, CA — Warfield
2/25 — Spokane, WA — Knitting Factory
2/26 — Missoula, MT — Wilma Theater
2/27 — Seattle, WA — Showbox SoDo
3/1 — Boise, ID — Revolution
3/2 — Salt Lake City, UT — Complex
3/3 — Denver, CO — Fillmore
3/5 — Green Bay, WI — EPIC Event Center
3/6 — Minneapolis, MN — Fillmore
3/7 — Chicago, IL — Radius
3/8 — Columbus, OH — Express Live
3/10 — Detroit, MI — Fillmore
3/11 — Rochester, NY — Main Street Armory
3/12 — Philadelphia, PA — Franklin Music Hall

Killswitch Engage’s “Atonement Tour” is in support of its album, Atonement and its companion, Atonement II.

More information on Killswitch Engage’s “Atonement Tour” is available online along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://www.killswitchengage.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/killswitchengage

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/kseofficial

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

‘Kin’ Is An Exceptional New Album From Whitechapel

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

When the COVID-19 pandemic reached America in late 2019, it clearly did a lot of bad things to this nation on so many levels.  At the same time, it apparently did some good, too.  The mixed blessing of the pandemic is that it led to so many musical acts spending their forced downtime making new music.  This has been pointed out multiple times this year by this critic.  Now Friday, another name can be added to the list of acts that crafted new material during the pandemic in the form of Whitechapel.  The band is scheduled to release its new album, Kin, which was crafted in 2020 – during the pandemic’s height – Friday through Metal Blade Records.  Coming more than a year after the release of its then latest album, The Valley, the 11-song record is a solid follow-up to that presentation.  That is due in part to its lyrical content, which will be examined shortly.  The musical content that accompanies the album’s lyrical presentation builds on the noted content to make the album even more engaging and entertaining.  It will be discussed a little later.  The production that went into Kin rounds out the album’s most important elements and will also be examined later.  Each item noted is key in its own right to the whole of the album.  All things considered, they make Kin a powerful new offering from Whitechapel that deserves its own spot among the best of this year’s new hard rock and metal albums.

Whitechapel’s forthcoming album, Kin, is a powerful new offering from the band that its established audiences will enjoy just as much as any metal purist.  That is due in large part to its lyrical content.  The lyrical side of this record is important to note because of the approach taken to the songs in whole.  Front man Phil Bozeman noted in an interview promoting Kin, the record is essentially a semi-concept record of sorts.  This is proven as he stated, “Early in the writing, there was some discussion of the album being like The Valley Part II, not literally called that, but in how the songs sound and flow through it.  It’s very much a storytelling type record like The Valley was…lyrically, the idea of continuing from the story of The Valley was always the goal.”  He added that the song’s tell a specific story, noting, “It’s a fictional representation of a non-fictional story…This is all about what I could have been had I decided to take the dark road.”  From there Bozeman expanded on the discussion by explaining how the album’s first three songs play into the overall “story.”  Being a semi-conceptual record in its approach is in itself reason enough for audiences to hear Kin.  In listening closely, audiences can understand the concept of Bozeman’s “other self” and how it plays into the bigger story.  The whole will completely immerse audiences and in turn, keep them completely engaged and entertained.  It is reason enough in itself for audiences to hear the record and certainly not the only reason.  The musical arrangements that accompany the album’s rich lyrical content plays its own important part to the whole of the album’s presentation.

The musical arrangements that are featured in Kin are of note because they continue to show the ongoing growth and development of the band’s members.  Where Valley showed change in the band with more clean vocals and more subtle arrangements, this record furthers that display, right from the album’s outset.  ‘I Will Find You’ opens with a controlled country/western style guitar line.  That intro so smoothly transitions into the band’s more familiar death metal approach and sound that is just as heavy and intense as ever, complete with Bozeman’s equally intense screams.  From there, the arrangement even moves into some subtle territory a la in The Valley before gradually transitioning back into the song’s heavier side in its final section for a complete ABC format here.  The final moments in this song throw back to the great guitar solos of the late 80s and early-mid 90s.  The whole is such a unique presentation that again shows that noted growth and development.

In another case, such as in ‘To The Wolves,’ there is a breakdown early in the arrangement that is a full-on thrash style performance a la vintage Anthrax.  That alongside the band’s – again – more familiar death metal approach makes the song in whole unique in its own right from its counterparts in the album.  It is another way in which the album’s musical side proves just as engaging and entertaining as its lyrical side. 

In yet another case – that of the album’s title track/closer – the song opens in such a deep, contemplative fashion.  What is really interesting here is that the quality of Bozeman’s vocals and their delivery lends itself to comparison to that of Slipknot/Stone Sour front man Corey Taylor in his more subdued performances.  The subtleties in the arrangement’s instrumentation build even more on that comparison, too. As the arrangement builds into its second half, even that is controlled, even in its heaviness.  It is so much unlike the other songs examined here and the rest of the album’s works, and more proof that despite Bozeman’s attestations, is proof that there are radio ready songs in this record.

In reference to that statement, Bozeman is saying in an interview about the album’s marketability, “It’s still very much a metal album.  I don’t think you would hear any of the songs on mainstream radio, but there are elements of the record that have more of a rock and open vibe.”  He was right in making light of the rock and open vibe of many songs, such as the record’s title track.  At the same time, he is selling the album and band short in saying that he did not think any of the album’s songs would make their way to mainstream rock radio.  There are plenty of songs in this record that are radio ready, including the noted title track and others.  That wide availability of the radio ready songs is tied directly into the noted growth and development from the band members individually and collectively that is exhibited throughout the album.  Keeping all of this in mind, the album’s musical content proves that it plays a part just as important to the album as its lyrical counterpart.

At this point, it should be clear that the musical and lyrical content featured in Kin does plenty to make the album engaging and entertaining.  That collective content is just one part of what makes Kin successful.  The record’s production brings everything together and rounds out the record’s presentation. The production fully ensures the noted growth is expertly exhibited throughout the album’s 47-minute run time.  The more subtle moments are well-balanced with the more intense moments.  The powerful, familiar death metal influences compliment the more subdued, Tool-esque moments.  Even other new approaches that the band took this time are well-balanced with more familiar influences, too.  The whole is impressive from start to end with not one part overpowering the others or countering the others too much.  It all works that well together.  The end result is an aesthetic from the album that is just as powerful as the album’s content.  When that content is considered along with the production, the whole makes Kin unquestionably one of the most powerful of this year’s new hard rock and metal albums.

Whitechapel’s new, forthcoming album, Kin, is a strong offering from the band.  Due out Friday through Metal Blade Records, the album offers audiences much to appreciate, not the least of which is its lyrical content.  The album’s lyrical content is important because for all intents and purposes, it makes Kin a semi-conceptual album as well as a sequel of sorts to The Valley.  The story of sorts that it presents is moving.  The musical arrangements that accompany the album’s lyrical content is also of note because it shows a continued growth and development from the band’s members individually and collectively.  The album’s production rounds out the most important of its elements.  That is because it brings the arrangements together and ensures that the noted growth and development is exhibited clearly.  Each item noted is important in its own way to the whole of the album.  All things considered, they make the album a work that Whitechapel’s established audiences will welcome just as much as any hard rock and metal purist. 

Kin is scheduled for release Friday through Metal Blade Records.  More information on the album is available along with all of Whitechapel’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://www.whitechapelband.com

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/whitechapelmetal

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/whitechapelband

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

Dragonforce Goes Glam In ‘Strangers’ Video

Dragonforce debuted the video for its latest single this week.

The band premiered the single for its single, ‘Strangers‘ Monday. The song is the latest single from the band’s 2019 album, Extreme Power Metal. The band premiered the video for the album’s then latest single, ‘Troopers of the Stars’ in August.

The video for ‘Strangers’ is full on glam. It features the band in classic 80s hair metal apparel and even playing guitars that were played by none other than Steve Vai during his time with Whitesnake and David Lee Roth. This is coupled with footage of people playing video games in what is meant to look like a retro arcade.

Guitarist Herman Li talked about the video and the song during a recent interview.

“This video takes place in the same ’80s world as our last video (‘Troopers of the Stars’), with the same cast and the same director,” said Li. “When Roboshobo pitched the concept, I was immediately into it. I’m a huge fan of the glam rock-era of music – I love the showmanship, the guitar solos, and the endearing cheesiness. And the players of that time were amazing, like Steve Vai, Warren Di Martini, and Reb Beach; I think sometimes the playing gets lost, and people just remember the crazy outfits. So, this video is a loving tribute to that era – while also being authentic…”

Added Li, “Roboshobo told us to get some cool-looking guitars to fit the theme of the video, and the night before the shoot, I was panicking because we still hadn’t found any. So, I texted Steve Vai and told him we were doing a glam rock video. He said, ‘come on over’, and when I got there, he had pulled out THE guitars he used with Whitesnake and David Lee Roth. I remember seeing these guitars in magazines as a kid, so it was incredible to get to use them on set – I almost cried when he handed them to me!”

Li concluded, “Besides the guitars, I think we all looked really hunky in our costumes, especially our hair! For a minute, I was even considering getting a perm…I know people may think we’re not taking ourselves seriously enough, but I think given the state of the world, sometimes it’s just nice to kick back and have a laugh with your mates. That was definitely the vibe on set – we could barely keep a straight face watching the playback. We’re also releasing super-limited merch we did in collaboration with the artist, Teenage Stepdad, at: dragonforce.com/shop. It definitely captures the feeling of the era!”

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records/Breaking The Law Public Relations

In related news, Dragonforce has announced the schedule for its upcoming 2022 North American tour in support of Extreme Power Metal. The tour is scheduled to launch March 7 in Santa Ana, CA and to run through April 23 in Berkeley, CA. It features performances scheduled in cities nationwide, such as Milwaukee, WI; Greensboro, NC and Dallas, TX.

The tour’s schedule is noted below. Tickets are available here. Battle Beast and Seven Spires are scheduled to serve as support for the tour.

DragonForce North American tour dates

w/ Battle Beast, Seven Spires

Mar. 7, 2022 – Santa Ana, CA – The Observatory *

Mar. 8, 2022 – San Diego, CA – The Observatory *

Mar. 9, 2022 – Roseville, CA – Goldfield Trading Post *

Mar. 10, 2022 – Portland, OR – Hawthorne Theatre *

Mar. 11, 2022 – Seattle, WA – Neptune *

Mar. 13, 2022 – Vancouver, BC – Commodore Ballroom *

Mar. 15, 2022 – Calgary, AB – Palace Theater *

Mar. 16, 2022 – Edmonton, AB – Union Hall *

Mar. 18, 2022 – Boise, ID – Knitting Factory *

Mar. 19, 2022 – Salt Lake City, UT – The Complex *

Mar. 20, 2022 – Denver, CO – Oriental Theater

Mar. 22, 2022 – Lawrence, KS – Granada Theater

Mar. 23, 2022 – St. Louis, MO – Red Flag

Mar. 24, 2022 – Milwaukee, WI – Rave II

Mar. 25, 2022 – Minneapolis, MN – First Avenue

Mar. 26, 2022 – Chicago, IL – Metro

Mar. 27, 2022 – Detroit, MI – St. Andrews Hall

Mar. 29, 2022 – Ft. Wayne, IN – Piere’s

Mar. 30, 2022 – Toronto, ON – Opera House

Mar. 31, 2022 – Montreal, QC – Corona Theatre

Apr. 1, 2022 – Quebec City, QC – Imperial Bell

Apr. 2, 2022 – Worcester, MA – The Palladium

Apr. 3, 2022 – New York, NY – Irving Plaza

Apr. 5, 2022 – Reading, PA – Reverb

Apr. 6, 2022 – Cleveland, OH – Agora Theater

Apr. 7, 2022 – Baltimore, MD – Baltimore Soundstage

Apr. 8, 2022 – Pittsburgh, PA – Roxian Theater

Apr. 9, 2022 – Greensboro, NC – Arizona Petes

Apr. 10, 2022 – Atlanta, GA – The Masquerade (Heaven)

Apr. 12, 2022 – Tampa, FL – Orpheum

Apr. 13, 2022 – Ft. Lauderdale, FL – Revolution

Apr. 15, 2022 – Dallas, TX – Amplified Live

Apr. 16, 2022 – Houston, TX – Warehouse Live

Apr. 17, 2022 – Austin, TX – Come And Take It Live

Apr. 19, 2022 – Mesa, AZ – Nile Theater

Apr. 20, 2022 – Las Vegas, NV – House of Blues

Apr. 22, 2022 – Los Angeles, CA – Belasco Theater

Apr. 23, 2022 – Berkeley, CA – UC Theater

* = without Battle Beast

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

Additionally, Dragonforce is scheduled to join Power Wolf and Warkings next year on a series of live dates across Europe. The bands’ tour is scheduled to launch Nov. 11 in Berlin, Germany and to run through Dec. 4 in Antwerp, Belgium. The bands’ tour is noted below.

DragonForce 2022 tour dates
w/ Powerwolf, Warkings

Nov. 11, 2022 – Berlin, Germany – Velodrom
Nov. 12, 2022 – Munich, Germany – Zenith
Nov. 13, 2022 – Prague, Czech Republic – Tipsport Arena
Nov. 14, 2022 – Katowice, Poland – MCK
Nov. 16, 2022 – Budapest, Hungary – Barba Negra
Nov. 17, 2022 – Vienna, Austria – Gasometer
Nov. 18, 2022 – Stuttgart, Germany – Schleyerhalle
Nov. 19, 2022 – Zurich, Switzerland – Samsung Hall
Nov. 21, 2022 – Barcelona, Spain – Razzmatazz
Nov. 22, 2022 – Madrid, Spain – Riviera
Nov. 24, 2022 – Milano, Italy – Alcatraz
Nov. 25, 2022 – Frankfurt, Germany – Jahrhunderthalle
Nov. 26, 2022 – Oberhausen, Germany – Konig Pilsener Arena
Nov. 27, 2022 – Paris, France – Zenith
Nov. 29, 2022 – London, UK – Roundhouse *
Dec. 1, 2022 – Amsterdam, Netherlands – Afas Live
Dec. 2, 2022 – Hamburg, Germany – Sporthalle
Dec. 3, 2022 – Saarbrucken, Germany – Saarlandhalle
Dec. 4, 2022 – Antwerp, Belgium – Lotto Arena
*=without DragonForce

More information on the Dragnforce’s new single, video, and upcoming live dates are available online along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

Websitehttps://www.dragonforce.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/dragonforce

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/Dragonforce

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

‘Symbol of Salvation Live’ Is A Wonderful Tribute To One Of Armored Saint’s Most Important Albums

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

Armored Saint’s 1991 album, Symbol of Salvation was a pivotal moment in the band’s history.  The band’s fourth album at the time of its release, it was also the first for the band on Metal Blade Records.  This after the band had been dropped by its previous label, Chrysalis Records.  The band had released its first three albums on that label.  The album would also be the band’s last with the late Dave Prichard.  Prichard died of leukemia in 1990, prior to the album’s release, leaving a clear hole in the band’s lineup and collective hearts.  That gave the completion of the album a whole new meaning.  It went on to be considered by audiences and critics alike “a turning point” for Armored Saint.  As a matter of fact, it ended up being so important a part of the band’s catalog that it was re-issued in 2003 in an expanded package with interviews and music videos.  Now Friday, the band will celebrate the 30th anniversary of the album’s release with a live recording featuring the band performing the album in whole.  It will come in the form of Symbol of Salvation Live through Metal Blade, fittingly.  The recording stands out in part because of the approach taken to the concert, which will be discussed shortly.  The band’s performance thereof is also of note and will be discussed a little later.  The recording’s production rounds out its most important elements and will also be examined later.  Each item noted is important to the whole of the presentation.  All things considered, they make Symbol of Salvation Live one more of this year’s top new live recordings.

Armored Saint’s forthcoming live recording, Symbol of Salvation Live is an impressive new offering from the band.  The group’s third full-length live recording (the first came in 1988 in Saints Will Conquer and the second in 2017 in the form of Carpe Noctum), this recording will appeal easily to the band’s established audiences and to hard rock audiences in general.  The appeal comes in part through the fact that the concert is a celebration of that one album, Symbol of Salvation.  Given, Armored Saint is hardly the first band to ever use a concert or tour to focus on one album, but that does not reduce the enjoyment by any means.  Again, .  Given, Armored Saint is hardly the first band to ever use a concert or tour to focus on one album, but that does not reduce the enjoyment by any means.  Again, Symbol of Salvation is a key moment in the history of Armored Saint’s life.  To that end, celebrating a record that was both a new birth for the band and a heavy emotional moment because of the loss of one of its own is fully justified.  Not to mention that it was also a turning point stylistically for the band.  If anything is interesting, it is the fact that the concert featured in the recording was held in 2018, three years prior to the 30th anniversary of the album’s release.  No explanation was ever given about that aspect by Metal Blade Records or the band.  Regardless, having the entire, landmark album in one setting from both parties here is still enjoyable.  It is one more way for audiences to celebrate the album and the band without worrying about COVID-19 and any restrictions caused therewith.  Audiences can instead just enjoy the concert in the comfort and safety of their own homes regardless of which side they take on that discussion.  It is just one part of what makes the recording, which barely tops the one-hour mark, a positive presentation.  The band’s performance throughout the concert adds its own positive touch to the presentation.

The performance of Armored Saint’s band members throughout this performance is of note because those performances individually and collectively do their own part to immerse audiences in the show.  Front man John Bush (who recently talked about being pursued by Metallica many years ago for a spot in their band) is the classic front man from beginning to end.  Whether it is in the mid-song moments when he is interacting with the audience, or the moments when he leads the band (and audience) along in song, his power and swagger is fully evident.  Drummer Gonzo Sandoval keeps time solidly through every high-energy performance, making sure each song keeps moving expertly from start to end.  Guitarists Phil Sandoval and Jeff Duncan pair just as well together, creating a wonderful point/counterpoint that is exceptionally accented throughout by the work of bassist Joey Vera.

Speaking of Vera, he credited the audience with bringing out the best in the band in a recently released prepared statement.

“The vibe in the room was so great,” he said.  “The fans made us feel so welcome, like we had come home for a celebration of sorts, and we all celebrated Symbol of Salvation.  It gave me chills hearing people sing along to songs like ‘Burning Question,’ a song we never had played live before.”

In other words, Vera is saying that the band fed off of the audience’s energy.  This is evident through each musician’s performance, too.  The band gives back the energy given to it as a group by the audience.  It gives the audience the full best of itself in each song’s performance, leaving no question that the performance overall is everything that audiences had hoped for from the band.  This is just one more way in which the recording shines.  The concert’s production rounds out its most important elements.

The production that went into the concert is important to examine because of the venue’s size.  In watching the concert’s video, it is clear that the concert hall was somewhat intimate.  It was hardly a stadium or arena.  That means that the utmost attention had to be paid to the audio mix.  Additionally, it meant that just as much attention had to be paid to the cameras.  Even with the somewhat confined space, the cameras were still able to capture the concert, giving audiences the best seat in the house.  The audio is expertly mixed.  The result is that it really captures the venue’s size so well while also ensuring no one audio element outweighed the others.  The aesthetic impact is positive in its own right.  The black and white presentation is an artistic thing in the video, but it also plays into that aesthetic impact.  It isn’t done in some overly artsy fashion to the point that it’s annoying.  There is just something about the attention to this aspect that makes it feel like one big music video and concert in one in all of the best ways possible.  On a related note, the cameras catch the concert in every positive angle, too.  The editing that went into the post production plays with the camera work in that it makes sure each shot is just long enough to not leave audiences dizzied.  Instead it works with the production from the cameras to fully capture the energy in the band’s performance and from the audience.  The short and simple here is that the production puts the final stamp on this recording, ensuring in its own way that audiences will remain engaged and entertained throughout the concert.  When the overall production is considered along with the band’s performance and the concert’s approach, the whole makes the recording in whole another wonderful new offering from Armored Saint.

Armored Saint’s forthcoming live recording, Symbol of Salvation Live is a strong new addition to this year’s field of new live recordings.  It offers plenty for audiences to appreciate, beginning with the very approach taken to the performance.  The performance celebrates the 30th anniversary of the release of the band’s 1991 album, Symbol of Salvation.  Yes, having originally been recorded in 2018, three years prior to the anniversary, it is still a great way to celebrate the anniversary.  The band’s performance is solid from beginning to end.  Each musician gives his all and then some.  As Vera noted, that is due in part to the fact that the audience gave its all, too.  The recording’s overall production ensures that the concert experience is just as enjoyable in its forthcoming home release.  That is thanks to the expert work that went into the concert’s initial recording and post.  It collectively gives audiences the best seat in the house.  Each item noted here is important in its own way to the whole of the recording.  All things considered, they make Symbol of Salvation Live one more of this year’s top new live recordings.

Symbol of Salvation Live is scheduled for release Friday through Metal Blade Records. More information on Symbol of Salvation Live is available online along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

Websitehttps://www.armoredsaint.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/thearmoredsaint

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/thearmoredsaint

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

Sorcerer Covers Black Sabbath Hit For Its Latest Single

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

Sorcerer premiered its take of a classic Black Sabbath song this week.

The band premiered its take on Black Sabbath’s ‘When Death Calls‘ along with a companion video Friday. The song’s premiere comes almost a month after the band debuted its cover of Rainbow’s ‘Gates of Babylon‘ along with a companion video.

Sorcerer’s take on ‘When Death Calls’ largely stays true to its source material both in terms of sound and stylistic approach. The one difference between the two takes is the production. Sorcerer’s cover gives the original a richer sound, even in the more subtle, contemplative verses. It brings the 80s rock sound of the original into the 21st century but still pays tribute to its source material. Keeping that in mind, Sorcerer’s update will impress audiences just as much as the original.

Front man Anders Enberg talked about Sorcerer’s update of ‘When Death Calls’ in a prepared statement.

 “You can hear it in the early Sorcerer songs, that we are a lot about Black Sabbath,” he said. “Maybe we tend to mix in the more melodic parts – more like the Dio and Tony Martin era albums – in the music we make today. For me ‘When Death Calls’ is one of the strongest songs I think they have written. A really doomy song, which in my opinion sounds a lot like the music we create in Sorcerer. After having a blast recording ‘Gates of Babylon’, we decided to give covering another spin. ‘When Death Calls’ was unanimously chosen as the track to go for!”

Guitarist Peter Hallgren echoed Enberg’s comments.

“Black Sabbath is an endless source of inspiration for writing good music in whatever style of hard rock and metal,” he said.

More information on Sorcerer’s take on ‘When Death Calls’ is available along with all of Sorcerer’s latest news at:

Websitehttps://www.sorcererdoom.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/sorcererdoom

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

Whitechapel Debuts NSFW Video For New Single, ‘A Bloodsoaked Symphony’

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

Whitechapel debuted the video for its latest single this week.

The band premiered the video for its new single, ‘A Bloodsoaked Symphony’ Wednesday. The song is the second single from the band’s forthcoming album, Kin, which is scheduled for release Oct. 29 through Metal Blade Records. The band premiered the album’s lead single, ‘Lost Boy,’ last month.

The NSFW video features front man Phil Bozeman taking what are supposed to be the corpses of his dead parents to a cave where he conducts an incantation to bring them back to life. This as blood drips from the cave’s ceiling, and as he drinks what is supposed to be blood as part of the incantation.

This is not meant to promote anything anti-Christian. The visualization, directed by David Brodsky, is meant to show the desperation that Bozeman feels at having lost his parents. This even though in the band’s most recent album, The Valley, at least one of the record’s songs seemed to pain his parents as dysfunctional, ironically. It leads one to wonder why Bozeman would feel any mournfulness at their passing.

The musical arrangement featured in Whitechapel’s new song is just as heavy as anything that the band has ever crafted. Bozeman’s gutteral screams pair with the heavy, crunching guitars, and the equally heavy bass and drums to fully immerse listeners in the song.

Kin will release on a variety of platforms, all of which are noted below along with the album’s track listing.

– digipak-CD
– deluxe box set (hardcover box includes: exclusive gold vinyl, gold 7-inch single, 72-page photo book)
– 180g white vinyl (EU exclusive)
– clear sky blue marbled vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 500 copies)
– clear ash grey marbled vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 300 copies)
– midnight blue marbled vinyl (Eyesore exclusive – limited to 200 copies)
– milky clear w/ blue and white splattered blob vinyl (Kings Road exclusive – limited to 200 copies)
– gold / black split vinyl (Impericon exclusive – limited to 200 copies)
– cool grey marbled vinyl (EMP exclusive – limited to 200 copies)
– gold / black dust vinyl (EMP exclusive – limited to 200 copies)
– opaque cyan (sides A/B) black (sides C/D) vinyl (US exclusive)
– black w/ white edge splatter vinyl (US exclusive)
– royal blue / black color in color vinyl (Newbury exclusive)
– electric blue w/ aqua blue splatter vinyl (Revolver exclusive)
– cyan w/ black splatter vinyl (US exclusive)
– white / cyan melt vinyl (US exclusive)

Kin track-listing
1. I Will Find You
2. Lost Boy
3. A Bloodsoaked Symphony
4. Anticure
5. The Ones That Made Us
6. History Is Silent
7. To the Wolves
8. Orphan
9. Without You
10. Without Us
11. Kin

Kin was tracked at the home of the band’s guitarist Zach Householder. Ted Jensen (Alice in Chains, Green Day, James Taylor) mastered the record while David Castillo mastered the album. The record’s cover art was designed by Jillian Savage.

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

Websitehttps://www.whitechapelband.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/whitechapelmetal

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/whitechapelband

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

Armored Saint Debuts Live ‘The Truth Always Hurts’ Clip

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

With the release of its new live recording, Symbol of Salvation Live one month away, Armored Saint debuted another clip from the recording this week.

The band premiered a live clip of its performance of ‘The Truth Always Hurts‘ Wednesday. The video is the second from the recording, following last month’s premiere of the live clip of ‘Symbol of Salvation.’

According to information provided about the recording, the concert featured in the recording was capture at a 2018 performance at New York City’s famed Gramercy Theater. The concert celebrated the 30th anniversary of the release of the band’s 1991 album by the same name. This even though the album was released in 1991.

Bassist Joey Vera offered the following comment about the concert.

“I felt like showing Symbol in another light was a great homage to the record itself.  Also, having all the fans be there and part of that event is a way for us to say ‘Thank you!’ For, without them, we can’t do any of this in the first place.”

Added Vera about the concert, which was capture by a six-camera crew, “The vibe in the room was so great.  The fans made us feel so welcome, like we had come home for a celebration of sorts, and we all celebrated Symbol of Salvation. It gave me chills hearing people sing along to songs like ‘Burning Question’, a song we never had played live before.”

The recording, which will come ahead of the band’s upcoming dates with Black Label Society and Prong, will release on a variety of platforms, all of which are noted below. The band’s noted run with BLS and Prong is scheduled to run from Dec. 27-31 along cities along the West Coast region.

– digipak-CD/DVD
– 180g black vinyl (EU exclusive)
– silver vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 500 copies)
– dusty rose pink marbled vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 300 copies)
– silver / white corona vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 200 copies)
– crystal clear vinyl (US exclusive)
– red / black splatter vinyl (US exclusive)

The vinyl and digital release of Symbol of Salvation Live will feature an extra bonus. That bonus comes in the form of five previously unreleased demo tracks recorded during the sessions for Symbol of Salvation. Dave Prichard was part of those sessions.

The track listing for Symbol of Salvation Live is noted below.

Symbol of Salvation Live CD/DVD track-listing
1. Reign of Fire (Live)
2. Dropping Like Flies (Live)
3. Last Train Home (Live)
4. Tribal Dance (Live)
5. The Truth Always Hurts (Live)
6. Half Drawn Bridge (Live)
7. Another Day (Live)
8. Symbol of Salvation (Live)
9. Hanging Judge (Live)
10. Warzone (Live)
11. Burning Question (Live)
12. Tainted Past (Live)
13. Spineless (Live)
*additional bonus tracks on the digital/vinyl versions:
14. Nothing Between the Ears (1989 4-Track Demo)
15. Get Lost (1989 4-Track Demo)
16. Medieval Nightmares (1989 4-Track Demo)
17. People (1989 4-Track Demo)
18. Pirates (1989 4-Track Demo)
19. Symbol of Salvation (Live) [Radio Edit] **available digitally only!

More information on Symbol of Salvation Live is available online along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

Websitehttps://www.armoredsaint.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/thearmoredsaint

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/thearmoredsaint

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

Slayer Announces Metal Blade Catalog Re-Issues Coming

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

Slayer is officially done, but not gone.

The legendary thrash metal band has partnered with Metal Blade Records to re-issue all four of the albums that it released through the label. The band made the announcement Wednesday through a news release distributed to the media.

The albums — Show No Mercy (1983), Haunting the Chapel (1984), Live Undead (1984), and Hell Awaits (1985) — are scheduled for release Oct. 22 on CD, vinyl, and cassette. The specifications for each platform’s release is noted below. Pre-orders are open.

Show No Mercy re-issue versions
– jewelcase CD
– cassette (featuring a fold-out J-card and a smokey tint cassette shell)
– 180g black vinyl
– transparent red / black split vinyl (US exclusive)
– orange marbled vinyl (US exclusive)
– transparent red / black splatter vinyl (US exclusive)
– orange / red melt vinyl (EU exclusive)
– red / white splatter vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 1000 copies)

Haunting the Chapel re-issue versions
– jewelcase CD
– cassette (featuring a fold-out J-card and a smokey tint cassette shell)
– 180g black vinyl
– opaque red / black split vinyl (US exclusive)
– red / white marbled vinyl (US exclusive)
– black / white splatter vinyl (US exclusive)
– red / white melt vinyl (EU exclusive)
– red / black splatter vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 1000 copies)

Live Undead re-issue versions
– jewelcase CD
– cassette (featuring a fold-out J-card and a smokey tint cassette shell)
– 180g black vinyl
– midnight blue / black split vinyl (US exclusive)
– grey / black marbled vinyl (US exclusive)
– clear / blood red splatter vinyl (US exclusive)
– blue / white / black splatter vinyl (EU exclusive)
– blue / black splatter vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 1000 copies)

Hell Awaits re-issue versions
– jewelcase CD
– cassette (featuring a fold-out J-card and a smokey tint cassette shell)
– 180g black vinyl
– transparent orange / black split vinyl (US exclusive)
– red marbled vinyl (US exclusive)
– transparent orange / black splatter vinyl (US exclusive)
– orange / red splatter vinyl (EU exclusive)
– red / yellow / black circle splatter vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 1000 copies)

More information on Slayer’s upcoming live dates is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

Websitehttps://www.slayer.net

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/slayer

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/slayer

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

Whitechapel Announces New Album Details; Premieres Album’s Lead Single

Courtesy: Metal Blade Records

Whitechapel will release its latest album this fall.

The band is scheduled to release its latest album, Kin, Oct. 29 through Metal Blade Records. The album’s release will come more than two years after the release of the band’s then latest album, The Valley (2019), which the band also released through Metal Blade Records.

Front man Phil Bozeman talked about Kin in comparison to The Valley in a recent interview.

“I feel with every album, we learn what worked best on the last one and try to utilize that in our writing,” said Bozeman. Early in the writing, there was some discussion of the album being like The Valley Part II, not literally called that, but in how the songs sound and flow through it. It’s very much a storytelling type record like The Valley was. Musically, we just want to create what we vibe with at the given moment. We write music with how we feel and not what is expected of us, while lyrically the idea of continuing from the story of The Valley was always the goal.”

In anticipation of the album’s release, the band premiered the record’s lead single, ‘Lost Boy.’ The song’s musical arrangement is much like that of songs from The Valley. It expertly balances Bozeman’s guttural screams and softer, Maynard James Keena-esque singing for an air that itself creates lots of interest. The balance in the instrumentation and that with the song’s vocals adds even more to the song’s engagement and entertainment.

No information was provided as to the meaning of the song’s lyrical theme in the press release announcing the band’s new album and single. However information noting that the songs touch on “emotional territory” would seem to hint at least somewhat to some information.

Kin will release on a variety of platforms, all of which are noted below along with the album’s track listing.

– digipak-CD
– deluxe box set (hardcover box includes: exclusive gold vinyl, gold 7-inch single, 72-page photo book)
– 180g white vinyl (EU exclusive)
– clear sky blue marbled vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 500 copies)
– clear ash grey marbled vinyl (EU exclusive – limited to 300 copies)
– midnight blue marbled vinyl (Eyesore exclusive – limited to 200 copies)
– milky clear w/ blue and white splattered blob vinyl (Kings Road exclusive – limited to 200 copies)
– gold / black split vinyl (Impericon exclusive – limited to 200 copies)
– cool grey marbled vinyl (EMP exclusive – limited to 200 copies)
– gold / black dust vinyl (EMP exclusive – limited to 200 copies)
– opaque cyan (sides A/B) black (sides C/D) vinyl (US exclusive)
– black w/ white edge splatter vinyl (US exclusive)
– royal blue / black color in color vinyl (Newbury exclusive)
– electric blue w/ aqua blue splatter vinyl (Revolver exclusive)
– cyan w/ black splatter vinyl (US exclusive)
– white / cyan melt vinyl (US exclusive)

Kin track-listing
1. I Will Find You
2. Lost Boy
3. A Bloodsoaked Symphony
4. Anticure
5. The Ones That Made Us
6. History Is Silent
7. To the Wolves
8. Orphan
9. Without You
10. Without Us
11. Kin

Kin was tracked at the home of the band’s guitarist Zach Householder. Ted Jensen (Alice in Chains, Green Day, James Taylor) mastered the record while David Castillo mastered the album. The record’s cover art was designed by Jillian Savage.

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

Websitehttps://www.whitechapelband.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/whitechapelmetal

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/whitechapelband

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