Michael Schenker Fest Debuts New Video; Announces New Live Dates

Courtesy: Nuclear Blast Records

Michael Schenker Fest debuted the video for its new single this week.

The band debuted the lyric video for its new single ‘The Girl With The Stars in Her Eyes‘ on Tuesday.  The song is featured in the band’s debut album Resurrection, which was released last year through Nuclear Blast Records. The band is named after its founder, former UFO/Scorpions guitarist Michael Schenker.

The video features a young woman dancing in a variety of settings, such as a dimply lit club, an open space with flaming twirlers and against a starlit background.  The song itself boasts a very 80s influenced hard rock sound while its lyrical theme obviously is about a young woman.

‘The Girl With The Stars in Her Eyes’ is just the latest single to be spawned from Resurrection.  The album has also spawned the singles ‘Take Me To The Church,’ ‘Warrior‘ and ‘Heart and Soul.’

Michael Schenker Fest will release its sophomore album Aug. 23 through Nuclear Blast Records.  According to Schenker, the album’s title is Revelation.  He talked about that and the album in whole in a recent interview.

“Based on the fun that we had recording Resurrection, the success of the album and the surrounding tours we undertook that were just fantastic, I was deeply inspired to make a start on writing new songs for a new Michael Schenker Fest album,” Schenker said.  “It is even a step up from Resurrection, with amazing input from all singers and all musicians.  I could not ask for a better result.  The songs are blazing, snappy, energetic, melodic, and with drummers like Simon Phillips and Bodo Shopf we got amazing results.  this time we even managed to record three great mid-tempo songs with all singers involved, singing their hearts out.”

Schenker added, “The album title and cover concept expresses things that have happened in my past as well as what is still happening at the present time.  It’s about passion and purity versus greed and corruption.  There is much to say.  It’s about time I let people know about some of this.”

Revelation was co-produced by Schenker and Michael Voss.  It was mastered by Christoph ‘Doc’ Stickel for CS Mastering/Vienna, Austria.

 

Courtesy;Nuclear Blast Records

The video’s debut comes as the band has launched a new string of live dates.  the latest tour schedule launched Monday and is set to run through May 18 in Austin, TX.  The tour’s schedule is noted below.

Confirmed MICHAEL SCHENKER FEST North American dates are:

4/15/2019  Whisky A Go Go – West Hollywood, CA
4/16/2019  Whisky A Go Go – West Hollywood, CA
4/17/2019  Whisky A Go Go – West Hollywood, CA
4/19/2019  Palace of Fine Arts – San Francisco, CA
4/20/2019  Ace of Spades – Sacramento, CA
4/21/2019  Revolution Hall – Portland, OR
4/22/2019  Vogue Theatre – Vancouver, BC
4/24/2019  The Palace formerly Flames Central – Calgary, AB CANADA
4/27/2019  Gothic Theatre – Englewood, CO
4/28/2019  The Truman – Kansas City, MO
4/30/2019  Bourbon Hall –  St Louisville, KY
5/03/2019  The Pabst Theater – Milwaukee, WI
5/04/2019  Concord Music Hall – Chicago, IL
5/05/2019  Lafayette Theater – Lafayette, IN
5/07/2019  Danforth Music Hall – Toronto, ON
5/09/2019  The Egg – Albany, NY
5/10/2019  The Palladium – Worcester, MA
5/11/2019  Irving Plaza – New York City, NY
5/12/2019  The Space at Westbury – Westbury, NY
5/14/2019  Ram’s Head Live 20 Market Place Baltimore, MD
5/15/2019  The National – Richmond, VA
5/16/2019  Variety Playhouse – Atlanta, GA
5/18/2019  Empire Garage – Austin, TX

A promo video for the trailer featuring Schenker is streaming online here.  Meet and Greet packages are available here.

More information on Michael Schenker Fest’s upcoming tour dates, album and more is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.www.michaelschenkerhimself.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/MW_Schenker

 

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Exmortus Announces New Live Dates

Exmortus is going back out on the road.

The veteran metal outfit announced a new slate of live dates Tuesday.  The almost monthlong North American tour is scheduled to launch May 6 in Indianapolis, IN and to run through May 29 in Fresno, CA.

The majority of the tour’s dates are in the Southwest and West Coast.  Silver Talon and Cultural Warfare will join Exmortus for the tour.

This latest string of live dates comes will follow an upcoming string of dates alongside Homewrecker and Venom Inc. that runs from April 24 in Colorado Springs, CO to May 4 in Brooklyn, NY.  the Misfits will join that tour on select dates.

Both tour schedules are noted below.  The upcoming live dates are in support of Exmortus’ latest full-length studio recording The Sound of Steel, which was released June 8 through Prosthetic Records. The 10-song record can be ordered now here.  It produced three singles — ‘Make Haste,’ ‘Feast of Flesh‘ and ‘Victory or Death.’

Courtesy: Prosthetic Records

EXMORTUS live w/ Venom Inc & Homewrecker! 
4/24 – Colorado Springs, CO – Zodiac
4/25 Kansas City, MO – The Riot Room
4/26 Minneapolis, MN – Lee’s Liqour Lounge
4/27 Rosemont, IL – Allstate Arena w/ The Misfits*
4/28 Lakewood, OH – The Foundry
4/29 Columbus, OH – Ace of Cups
4/30 Toronto, ON – The Rockpile
5/01 Ottawa, ON – Mavericks
5/02 Quebec City, QC – L’Anti
5/03 Hartford, CT – Webster Underground
5/04 Brooklyn, NY – The Kingsland
*No Exmortus

 

Courtesy: Prosthetic Records

EXMORTUS live on the North America Spring 2019 Tour: 
5/06 Indianapolis, IN Black Circle
5/08 Oklahoma City, OK 89th Street Collective
5/09 Odessa, TX The Club
5/10 El Paso, TX Rockhouse Bar & Grill
5/11 Mesa, AZ Club Red
5/23 Oakland, CA Oakland Metro+
5/24 Eugene, OR Old Nick’s Pub*
5/25 Bend, OR The Third Street Pub*
5/26 Vancouver, BC Rickshaw Theater
5/27 Seattle, WA Club Sur*
5/28 Portland, OR Bossanova Ballroom*
5/29 Fresno, CA Strummer’s+
*with Silver Talon
+with Cultural Warfare

More information on Exmortus’ upcoming live dates, videos, news and more is available online now at:

 

Website: http://exmortusmusic.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/exmortusband

 

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Gears Premieres ‘Tango Yankee’ Video

Courtesy: TAG Publicity

Hard rock band Gears recently released the video for its new single.

The band debuted the video for ‘Tango Yankee’ on April 6 at tattoo.com.  The song features guest vocals from Sevendust front man Lajon Witherspoon. Witherspoon also took time to appear in the song’s companion video.

Gears drummer Jimmy Wooten said in a recent interview that the song is effectively a tribute to America’s military and emergency service personnel.

“With ‘Tango Yankee,’ we just really wanted to write something dedicated to several members of our families that have served in the military, law enforcement and first response,” Wooten said.  “We really wanted this to be special, so getting one of our favorite vocalists from one of our favorite bands was very exciting and made this track just that — special.  Lajon came in and absolutely crushed the track vocally.  I really love the way it turned out.  Trip [Six] — Gears front man — and LJ complimented each other so well. Put that together with Clint’s epic solo, and of course Corey [Lowery] at the helm, this really turned out something spectacular.  I believe that the thought behind the song is something that most Americans can relate to, as many of of have or have had loved ones who serve.  Maybe even a little something that can get us all past all of our political disagreements unify, recognize the sacrifice and just say a simple ‘Thank You’ to all those who fight for our freedom, protect us and keep us safe.”

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

 

Website: http://www.gearsofficial.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/officialgears1

 

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The First Time Could Be The Charm For Wargirl

Courtesy: Clouds Hill

Independent music collective Wargirl is scheduled to release its self-titled debut album next week.  The California-based group’s 10-song, 38-minute album is a work that will appeal easily to fans of acts, such as Amy Winehouse, Meghan Trainor and Nikki Yanofsky.  This is evident in the album’s latest single ‘How You Feel,’ which will be discussed shortly.  ‘Mess Around’ exemplifies those statements just as much as ‘How You Feel,’ and will be discussed a little later.  ‘No Difference,’ the album’s midway point, is yet another example of the album’s ability to reach so many listeners with its musical and lyrical content with ease.  It is hardly the last of the album’s most notable works.  ‘I Know I,’ which comes late in the album’s almost 40-minute run, ‘Last Time’ and ‘Sass Girl’ are just as notable as the trio of songs directly addressed here.  When they are all considered along with the album’s four remaining songs, the whole becomes a record will make the first time – not the third – the charm for the group.

Wargirl’s self-titled debut album, due out April 19 via Clouds Hill Records, is a solid starting point for the independent Califonia-based musical collective.  That is because it is such an easily accessible record in terms of its musical and lyrical content.  Those statements are supported in part through the album’s latest single ‘How You Feel.’  That is due in no small part to the song’s arrangement.  The old-school soul/funk vibe takes listeners immediately back to the 1960s with its bongos, keyboards, guitars and horns.  Vocalist Samantha Park’s – the daughter of classic funk group Bull & The Matadors front man James Lafayette Parks —  vocals add a certain soulfulness that is rarely recreated by today’s female vocalists.  The closest comparison that can perhaps be made is to the likes of Amy winehouse.  Even the sound of drummer Erik Nieto’s own percussive part has its own throwback sound and vibe that, when added to the mix, helps create a sound and feel that instantly appeals to any listener.  All things considered here, the song’s infectious arrangement is just one part of what makes the song in whole so appealing.  The song’s lyrical content is just as accessible as its musical arrangement.

The song’s lyrical content clearly takes the time-honored path of tackling relationships in music.  This is made obvious as Park sings in the song’s lead verse, “How you feel about me now/Got my emotions running wild/And you’re asking yourself how/I’m not your baby/Ain’t your child/Don’t contradict me when I ask you to decide…to stay or go…/How you feel about me now…listen I will not be held down.”  She goes on to sing in the song’s second verse, “You patronize me when I say/I ought to let you go/Honey, I’ve decided though/You ain’t need to set nobody free/Why the hell did I keep on stalling/While you wore me out/Reality is setting in/So how you feel about me now.”  Simply put, this is someone telling another person to make up their mind after realizing how things have been for such a long time.  The certain edge in the song’s arrangement does a good job of capturing the emotion in the discussion, showing the time and thought that was put into joining the elements.  The end result is a work that is just one of a handful of works that makes Wargirl a solid start for Wargirl.  ‘Mess Around’ is another example of what makes Wargirl work as well as it does.

‘Mess Around’ is among Wargirl’s most notable additions because in part because of its musical arrangement.  As with ‘How You Feel,’ this song’s arrangement also throws back to the 1960s, much as with works from Winehouse, Trainor and Yanofsky.  Whereas the previously discussed work boasted more of a mid-tempo arrangement and was much more old school in its approach, this work is far more upbeat, and presents much more of a pop vibe.  The old-school influence is not lacking here by any mean, but rather is mixed more with a modern sound for a whole that is certain to make it another fan favorite.  In terms of its lyrical content, the song proves just as accessible again, focusing yet again on relationships in proud fashion.

Park sings in the song’s lead verse, “If you’re gonna put me down/I ain’t gonna hang around with you/If you’re gonna mess around/Baby, know that you and I are through/Well the sky is full of thunder/And the land is filled with rain/Do I always have to wonder/What goes on inside your brain.”  Park repeats the lead verse’s main two lines to open the song’s second verse, before switching things up a bit and singing, “Well you lost me with your lying/And you lost me with your truth/And you always take my money/You always take the rules.”  From there, the song enters its bridge, during which Park’s subject tells the alleged two-timer that no one wants that person.  Simply put, this is a proud statement from a jilted lover who is telling another person that she is not going to put up with that person’s ways.  It is a message to which plenty of listeners will relate.  That is especially when that message is joined with the song’s musical arrangement, which does a good job of illustrating the main subject’s emotion in delivering the noted message.  Keeping this in mind, it becomes clear why this song is another important addition to Wargirl, showing even more, the album’s mainstream appeal.  It still is not the last of the album’s most notable works.  ‘No Difference,’ shows Wargirl’s strength just as much as ‘Mess Around’ and ‘How You Feel.’

‘No Difference’ boasts a musical arrangement that is full on classic funk complete with a driving bongo line at its center.  The addition of the guitar, keyboards and cowbell makes for comparisons to some of the best works of Sly and the Family Stone.  That in itself does more than enough to make this work engaging and entertaining for listeners.  When it is joined with the seeming social commentary in the song’s lyrical content, those positive vibes presented by both sides makes the song that much more enjoyable.

The seeming social commentary is inferred as Park sings in the song’s lead verse, “I want everything/I am the wind and rain/I see a future great/Because I want everything/There’s no difference between us.”  She adds in the song’s second verse, “I want everything/Voices inside my brain/Say, “I feel a little strange,” ‘cause I want everything/There’s no difference between us.”  From there, she continues to repeat that last line multiple time as the song’s arrangement once more takes center stage.  This is important to note, as the positive energy exuded in the arrangement works in tandem with the seeming positive message about self-confidence and not letting differences stop one’s self to generate quite the positive vibe for the song.  It is just one more example of why Wargirl is such a strong debut for Wargirl.  It continues to positive vibes presented through the other songs noted here and through the rest of the album.  When those songs are considered along with this work, the end result is an album that can potentially be the charm for the band on just its first try.

Wargirl’s self-titled debut album, set for release on April 19, is a work that is certain to appeal to fans of Meghan Trainor, Nikki Yanofsky and Amy Winehouse.  That is evident throughout the course of the album, including the three songs discussed here.  Between the positive sound and vibes in the songs’ arrangements and the equally positive messages in the songs’ lyrical content, the record offers plenty for listeners to appreciate.  Considering this and the right support, Wargirl could very well prove the first time is the charm for Wargirl instead of the third.  More information on Wargirl is available online along with all of Wargirl’s latest news and more at:

 

 

Website: http://wargirlband.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/wargirlband

 

 

 

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Whitechapel Reaches Its Peak On ‘The Valley’

Courtesy: Metal Blade Reocrds

Change is something that is never easy in life.  Nor is bearing one’s heart about the past. Yet veteran metal outfit Whitechapel and its front man Phil Bozeman have done both of those things on the group’s latest album, The Valley.  Released March 29 through Metal Blade Records, the 10-song, 40 minute album’s musical arrangements show great change and growth from the band in terms of its sound.  The often painful recollections of Bozeman’s past, voiced in the song’s lyrical content, couples with those powerful arrangements to make The Valley a strong new offering from the Tennessee-based band.  The album’s latest single ‘Hickory Creek’ is just one of the songs that serves to support the noted statements.  ‘Doom Woods,’ the closer on the album’s standard edition release, is another example of the growth and power in this new album.  It will be discussed a little later.  ‘Black Bear,’ which comes just past the record’s midway point, is one more example of the growth and power that is evident in the album’s presentation.  It will also be discussed later.  When it is considered along with the other songs noted here and the seven other songs not directly noted here, the album in whole proves to be some of Whitechapel’s best work to date if not its best work to date.

Whitechapel’s seventh full-length studio recording The Valley is some of the veteran Tennessee-based deathcore band’s best work to date if not its best work to date.  That is because of the growth exhibited in the album’s musical arrangements and the power in its lyrical content.  The album’s latest single ‘Hickory Creek’ is just one of the songs featured in the album that serves to support the noted statements.  The song’s arrangement is perhaps the album’s single best example of that noted musical growth.  The melancholy vibe created by the guitars, Bozeman’s vocal delivery, the bass and drums echoes influences of Tool and Slipknot.  As the song reaches its peak and Bozeman presents his brief scream moment, that sound couples with the guitars for a sound that lends itself to comparisons to Dry Kill Logic.  That joining of so many other elements was a clear risk for the band, and a risk that paid off.  It makes this song one of the album’s strongest compositions.  As impressive as the song’s arrangement is, it is just one part of what makes the song stand out.  The song’s lyrical content strengthens the foundation formed by the arrangement.

As has been noted previously by others, ‘Hickory Creek’ allegedly has a link to Bozeman’s relationship with his mother.  What is interesting is that it is difficult to know if this song is delivered from the vantage point of Bozeman as a kid, an adult looking back on himself as a kid or from that of his mother. That actually makes the song’s lyrical side that much more interesting.  Bozeman sings in the song’s lead verse, “It’s so hard to let go/You can hear me but I’m invisible/But if you dig out your eyes/Maybe pain will subside/the worst that could happen is you never see me again/But the worst is yet to come, my friend.”  This is a painful statement.  On the one hand, one could imagine this is Bozeman’s mother, but at the same time, it could be a young Phil talking to his adult self as adult Phil looks back on his past.  That would seem to be the more likely scenario.  It is made even more likely as he sings in the song’s chorus, “This path I walk is comforting/But now I’m left to sing this song alone/I’m fading faster now.”  He sings in the song’s second verse, “I left so long ago/You never noticed I was gone/Now that you don’t have eyes/Maybe now you’ll realize/Within your own head/You’re creating these lies/For what it’s worth/You’re still beautiful/but beauty lies within the eyes.”  Here in this second verse, is someone who seems to be looking back on the past, again, and talking to that someone from the past, wishing some kind of connection could have been made so many years ago.  It is such a painfully powerful story, and when it is joined with the song’s musical arrangement, becomes that much more powerful.  The two elements combine to show clearly why this song stands out as one of The Valley’s strongest entries, and by connection, as just one example of why The Valley is among Whitechapel’s best work yet.  It is just one of the album’s most notable entries.  ‘Doom Woods’ shows just as much as ‘Hickory Creek’ why The Valley is such a notable new offering from Whitechapel.

‘Doom Woods’ stands out, as with ‘Hickory Creek,’ in part because of its musical arrangement.  Unlike so many of the songs featured in this album and the band’s past records, this song is not one of those all-too-familiar blast beat deathcore works.  Rather, it is more of a melodic death metal composition.  Yet even taking a more melodic sound this time out, there is still a certain heaviness that draws listeners in with ease.  In other words, it is a truly accessible composition despite (and because) it isn’t just another hyper speed deathcore work.  It maintains the heaviness of the band’s past and current sound, but in a different fashion, making it that much more notable.  While the song’s arrangement is clearly an important part of its whole, it is just one part of what makes the song stand out.  The song’s lyrical content serves to make it stand out, too.

Once again, the song’s lyrical content seems to focus on Bozeman’s childhood, but in a different fashion.  This time, the song seems to focus on the emotional trauma that Bozeman endured in yet another, but seemingly just as painful experience.  He sings in the song’s chorus, “They say don’t walk to the darker side/But where the light shines, the devil is alive/I’ve seen hell through a child’s eyes/And I know in time, the devil I will find/The devil I will find.”  This is a rather clear-cut statement.  This is Bozeman seemingly looking back, explaining that he has been through…well…hell, adding that thing that so many people call “the light” or the good side, is actually where evil resides.  He goes on to sing in the song’s second verse, “In time I will escape/But in this place, my soul remains encased/The leaves have swallowed the sun/My heart has reached absolute zero/I have no one left/Even my shadow has died on me/She’s gone and I want to disappear, disappear.”  That “she” is likely Bozeman’s mother, on whom he focuses quite a bit in this album.  There is even a mention in the song’s third verse, of a young Bozeman being taken “from his mother’s hands,” with the song’s subject telling Bozeman’s mother, “Don’t you cry for him now…turn this young boy to a man/Now his destiny’s found.”  It is another of the record’s most powerful stories that invokes so much emotion.  That is just as much the case when these hard-hitting lyrics are joined with the song’s musical arrangement.  The two elements together make ‘Doom Woods’ stand out in its own right in the best way possible.  It also is not the last of the album’s most notable entries.  “Black Bear’ is one more of the works that shows the growth and depth of the band’s overall content in this album.

Whereas ‘Doom Woods’ and ‘Hickory Creek’ are so powerful because of the subtleties in their arrangements, ‘Black Bear’ stands out because it is not so subtle.  Rather, this song is a rather intense work.  It starts off some meditative (for lack of better wording) but wastes little time in picking up and launching into a full-on grind/deathcore hybrid arrangement.  The heavy, crunching down-tuned guitars and bass couple with Bozeman’s trademark guttural cookie monster growl to create a sound that will impress even the most hardcore metal head.  That is because it hits listeners like that proverbial ton of bricks and refuses to let up right to the song’s end.  That arrangement is familiar stylistically, but also shows its own certain amount of growth from the band.  To that end, it is yet another example of the growth from the band this time out.  It is just one of the song’s most important elements.  Its lyrical content adds even more strength to its presentation.

Bozeman noted in a recent interview that while not entirely biographical, this song’s lyrical content is loosely based on the impact of his stepfather on his mother.  He does not come right out and say what happened, but allegedly, the impact was notably negative.  That impact is voiced powerfully through Bozeman’s lyrics here, as he sings, “He has come for the blood of my only son/I can sense his heartbeat slowly fade/The sound of my voice is his way to me/I buried my tongue with my family’s bones.”  He goes on to sing in the song’s second verse, “Sleep my son/Feel my embrace/Please don’t forget my love/As the bullet goes through his brain/I wake up to live it again and again/As I lay me down to sleep/I pray the Lord to put me six feet deep.”  This comes across as a woman who is going through so much emotional pain.  It comes across as inferring this is someone who did something heinous, but out of love for her own child, and the guilt of what she had done made her wish for her own death.  Again, Bozeman stressed the story here is only loosely based on the situation with his mother and stepfather.  Even with that in mind, the song still invokes so much emotion in yet another way.  The power of that emotion is something that will stick with listeners just as much as the emotion expressed in the other songs noted here and throughout the rest of the album.  When it is considered along with the mix of anger and sadness expressed in the song’s musical arrangement, it makes the song in whole that much more powerful and obvious as one of the album’s most notable entries.  When that whole is considered along with the other songs noted here and the rest of the album’s works, the whole displays The Valley as Whitechapel at or near its peak.

Whitechapel’s seventh full-length studio recording The Valley is one of the band’s best works to date if not its best work yet.  That is because of the obvious time and thought put into the creation of each song, both musically and lyrically.  From start to finish, there is not one bad moment.  The emotion invoked by the album’s musical arrangements shows a wonderful coordination between both elements in each song.  That is just as evident in the songs noted here as in those note directly addressed.  Simply put, that time and thought exhibited in each work makes every song its own high point.  The end result is a record that puts Whitechapel at its peak if not very close to its peak.  The Valley is available now.  More information on the album is available online now along with all of the band’s latest news, tour dates and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.whitechapelband.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/whitechapelband

 

 

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‘The Wings Of War’ Is Another Powerful Musical Salvo From Overkill

Courtesy: Nuclear Blast Records

Don’t fix what’s not broken.  We all know and have used that old adage more than once in our lives, including the members of the veteran thrash metal outfit Overkill.  It is an adage that the band’s members have used from one album to the next over the course of now more than 30 years.  While the band has maintained a very distinct sound from one album to the next, it has also tweaked that sound just enough with each outing, to make every album fresh and interesting.  That is why the veteran New Jersey-based outfit has remained one of the elite names in the thrash community for such a long time.  The band’s latest album, The Wings of War – its 14th so far – supports these statements just as much as its past albums through its musical and lyrical content. ‘Believe in The Fight,’ which comes early in the 10-song record’s body, is just one of the songs that helps prove the noted argument.  ‘Where Few Dare To Walk,’ which comes much later in the 50-minute album’s run, also works to support the noted argument.  It will be addressed a little bit later.  ‘Welcome To The Garden State,’ the album’s latest single, also exemplifies the statements made here.  When the songs noted here are considered along with other songs featured in this record, such as ‘Last Man Standing,’ – the album’s opener – ‘Distortion,’ Hole In My Soul’ and the rest of the album’s offerings, the whole of The Wings of War proves that the members of Overkill still knows how to entertain audiences.  To that end, it proves that Overkill as a unit still has plenty of fight left.

Overkill’s most recently released album The Wings of War is a strong new showing from the veteran New Jersey-based thrash metal outfit.  That is because from start to finish, it is a record that shows the band still knows how to expertly tweak its familiar thrash sound just enough to keep things interesting for audiences and keep its music fresh.  One of the songs featured in this record that supports that statement comes early in the album’s run in the form of ‘Believe in the Fight.’  In terms of its musical arrangement, the song is everything that the band’s fan base has come to expect from the group.  At the same time, a close listen to the song reveals a subtlety in the guitar lines that makes the song comparable to some of the best classic works of Metallica and Anthrax.  That is evident not just in the guitar lines, but in the drums and the choruses.  The similarity is not exact, thank goodness, but it is close enough.  One could go so far as to make a comparison to the songs from Metallica’s debut album Kill ‘Em All in listening to this song.  That is, of course, just this critic’s own take on the arrangement.  The arrangement is just one part of what makes the song stand out.  The song’s lyrical content plays its own important part to its whole.

The song’s lyrical content presents a proud, forceful message of believing in one’s own self and not giving up in life.  This is inferred most clearly through the song’s chorus in which front man Bobby Blitz sings, “We’re not going tired/Or slowing in the quiet night/And we’re not leaving something to believe in/When you think there’s nothing left at all/Believe in the fight/And we do it/In the dark/In the light/One last time/Let’s get it right/With a heart as cold as ice/I believe in the fight/ What do you believe in/In the dark/In the light/One last time/Let’s get it right/When there’s nothing left to believe in/Believe in the fight.”  That is a rather clear message.  Blitz adds to that message in the song’s lead and second verse, saying he is not the type to lie to a person and make that person’s situation worse, nor is the person that type to do the same.  It is sort of one of those “and another thing” statements that serves to say to listeners, “I’ll be straight with you and I know you’ll be straight with me, so don’t give up.  Keep believing and fighting.”  It really is a positive message.  When this positive, uplifting message is coupled with the song’s old school 80s thrash metal style arrangement, the result is a song that shows clearly how much Overkill still has to offer.  It is just one of the songs that serves to show how much fight this band still has.  ‘Where Few Dare To Walk’ is another example of just how much fight this band still has.

Just as is the case with ‘Believe in the Fight,’ ‘Where Few Dare To Walk’ stands out in part because of its musical arrangement.  Again, the arrangement can be compared to some of the best works from Metallica.  In this case, the comparison can be made to the works from the band’s landmark 1986 album Master of Puppets.  That is evident right from the foreboding sound of the song’s opening bars and right into heavy, grinding sound that launches not long after.  If one wanted, one could even make a comparison to Metallica’s equally beloved album Ride The Lightning with this arrangement, too.  Again, it is not the typical up-tempo thrash style work for which Overkill has become known over the decades.  The band has tried this sort of sound previously, but only rarely.  To that end, it makes this change of pace another example of the continued ability of Overkill’s members to keep things engaging and entertaining for listeners.  Its arrangement is just one part of what makes it so interesting, too.  Its lyrical content helps it stand out, too.

The song’s lyrical content comes across as another statement reminding listeners to maintain their inner strength.  This is inferred in the song’s lead verse, as Blitz sings, “Cross your t’s and dot your I’s/Take note when the raven flies/And always keep one eye upon the fool/Without fear or favor, speak to them/With good behavior to condemn/And keep the other eye upon the cruel.”  He comes across as saying, keep your friends close and your enemies closer.  He goes on to sing, “Reach down deep/Stand your ground/We’ve only just begun/Turn no cheek/In step and pound/Until the job is done/And walk,walk.”  There, in that chorus, is that message of standing up for one’s self and not being afraid to stand up for something.  As if that is not proof enough, he further notes, “Call them out/On their s***/demand they listen/When you talk/wear them down/bit by it/And go where few dare to walk.”  Blitz is saying, be brave, be willing to stand up for something and for one’s self.  That is because there are so few people who are brave enough to do just that.  He even goes so far as to stress, “Do unto others as unto you/Bite down on the golden rule/And always keep a match to light the fuse/Walk softly/Carry a big stick/and disassemble brick by brick/And never think our outcome is to lose.”  This is another welcome, empowering statement from the band that is certain to resonate with plenty of listeners.  When it is coupled with the song’s arrangement, the whole of the elements makes this song yet another example of just how much fight this band still has in it and what makes the album in whole another example of why Overkill remains today one of hard rocks’ elite acts.  It still is not the last of the songs that serves to show what makes The Wings of War stand out just as much as Overkill’s past albums.  The loud, proud, fist-pumping anthem that is ‘Welcome to the Garden State’ is one more example of how The Wings of War proves how much Overkill as a unit still has to offer.

‘The arrangement at the center of ‘Welcome to the Garden State’ is yet another example of the ability of Overkill’s members to keep things fresh in that it takes the band’s familiar thrash style and crosses it with a more punk-style sound that ends up being comparable to some of Motorhead’s best works.  Yet again, here is Overkill as a unit changing things up just enough for listeners, and in turn keeping things quite interesting.  The song’s arrangement is just part of what makes it stand out.  Its lyrical content stands out just as much as its musical arrangement.

Simply put, this song is a musical and lyrical love letter to New Jersey.  Blitz proudly sings in his signature gravelly tone, “Welcome to the Garden State/The best damn place in the U.S.A./You may not agree/You bitch and moan/I’ve been everywhere/But it’s not like home.”  He adds at the end of the song’s lead verse, “Don’t f*** with a jersey devil.”  In other words, he’s showing his Jersey pride.  There’s nothing wrong with that.  As a matter of fact, this critic’s own father was born in Trenton, New Jersey, and spent plenty of time there (and across the Northeast since this critic’s ancestors apparently helped found parts of New England, including New Haven, CT) throughout the years.  In other words, while maybe not living there now, this critic has plenty of his own Jersey pride and can relate to Blitz’s words.  That includes Blitz’s reference to the traffic on the turnpike and Route 35.  That home-state pride is a fun addition to the album, and once more shows – in an especially unique fashion – the continued ability of Overkill’s members to keep things fresh and interesting.  When this is considered along with the other two songs noted here and the rest of the album’s offerings, fresh, interesting works couple with the band’s more familiar works for a whole that is another solid offering from Overkill.  It proves in whole to be an album that displays without doubt, this veteran hard rock outfit still has plenty of fight left in its members.

Overkill’s 14th full-length studio recording The Wings of War is a powerful new musical salvo from the veteran thrash metal band.  From start to end, this 10-song, 50 minute record gives listeners something old and something new.  The minor tweaks to the arrangements couple with lyrical themes that are just as certain to keep listeners engaged and entertained as the record’s musical content.  The end result is a record that is easily one more of the year’s top new hard rock and metal albums.  It is available now.  More information on the album is available online now along with all of the band’s latest tour updates, news and more at:

 

 

 

Website: http://www.wreckingcrew.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/OverkillBand

 

 

 

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Texas Hippie Coalition Inks New Record Deal; Debuts New Album’s Lead Single, Announces Tour Dates

Courtesy: entertainment one

Texas Hippie Coalition has some new music and a new label home.

The veteran hard rock band recently signed a deal with entertainment one, making the label the band’s new record company.  The announcement was made Friday and comes two weeks after the Denison, TX-based band debuted ‘Moonshine,’ the lead single from its upcoming album High in the Saddle.  The record is currently scheduled for release on May 31.

 

In addition to the announcement of the band’s new record deal and the debut of its new single and coming album, the band also recently announced a new expansive tour schedule.  The tour, titled the “haulin’ Moonshine tour,” is in support of High in the Saddle, and is scheduled to launch April 18 in Greeley, CO and run through June 22 in Oklahoma City, OK.  The tour’s current schedule is noted below.

4/18 Greeley, CO Moxie Theater
4/19 Denver, CO Buffalo Rose
4/20 CO Springs, CO Sunshine studio
4/21 Salt lake city, UT The Royal
4/24 Portland, OR Hawthorne
4/25 Seattle, WA El Corazon
4/26 Spoke, WA Cruisers
4/28 Sacramento, CA The Boardwalk
4/30 San Diego, CA Brick by Brick
5/3 Phoenix, AZ Club Red
5/8 Lincoln, NE Royal Grove
5/11 Gillette, WY Cam-plex
5/12 Sioux Falls, SD Bigs Bar
5/14 Green Bay, WI Riverside Ballroom
5/18 Harrison, OH The Blue Note
5/19 Flint, MI Machine Shop
5/22 St Louis, MO Fubar
5/23 Joliet, IL The Forge
5/24 Waterloo, IA Spicoli’s
5/25 Chippewa Falls, WI Every Buddy’s
5/26 Dubuque, IA Mississippi Moon
5/28 Battle Creek, MI The Music Factory
5/29 Akron, OH Empire
5/30 Cincinnati, OH Riverfront Live
5/31 Syracuse, NY Lost Horizon
6/1 Brooklyn, NY Knitting Factory
6/2 Clifton, NJ Dingbatz
6/4 Pittsburgh, PA Craft house
6/5 Lancaster, PA Chameleon Club
6/7 Richmond, VA Canal Club
6/8 Jacksonville, NC Tar-heals
6/9 Johnson City, TN OT’s
6/19 Austin, TX Dirty Dogg Saloon
6/20 Houston, TX Scout Bar
6/21 Dallas, TX GMBG

Tickets for the shows are available here.

More information on the band’s tour, single, album and more is available online now at:

 

Website: http://www.thcofficial.com

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

Twitter: http://twitter.com/thcofficial

 

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