‘Pirates’ Is A Great Musical Treasure From Visions Of Atlantis

Courtesy: Napalm Records

Power metal band Visions of Atlantis released its latest album, Pirates, this year.  Released May 13 through Napalm Records, the 12-song offering came three years after the release of its then latest album, Wanderers (2019).  The record’s musical and lyrical content offers something to like from beginning to end.  That is evidenced in part through one of its early entries, ‘Master The Hurricane.’  One of the album’s singles, it will be discussed shortly.  ‘Legion of the Seas,’ another of the record’s singles and one of its later entries, is another example of the record’s strength.  It will be discussed a little later.  ‘Mercy,’ which comes even later, is yet another notable addition to the album, showing what makes the record’s overall content engaging and entertaining.  It will also be discussed later.  When it and the other songs noted here are considered together, the whole makes Pirates a record that is full of musical booty.  Yes, that awful pun was intended.

Pirates, the latest entry from Visions of Atlantis, is another successful offering from the veteran power metal band that will appeal to the band’s established audiences just as much as any power metal fan.  That is evidenced in part through the early entry, ‘Master The Hurricane.’  The song’s musical arrangement immediately grips audiences with its stylistic comparison to works from both Epica and Sabaton.  The strings, the choral style vocals, and the rock element all come together to make that clear, engaging, and entertaining approach and sound.  The impact of the arrangement works with the song’s lyrical theme to make for even more engagement.

On the surface, the song’s lyrical theme sounds like it fits right in with the album’s title about everyone’s beloved sea-faring favorites.  On a deeper level though, the lyrical theme is much more than that.  It is a presentation that finds the song’s subject wondering how he/she will get through life’s most difficult times (IE the hurricane).  This is made clear right from the song’s lead verse, which finds the song’s subject stating, “Walking the meadows of bliss/And flowers of love/Holding the moments of peace I cherish all of/Forgotten/Forsaken/I lost the way to my creek/Awaken/Enlighten/Where is the home that I seek?/Feeling the rays of sun/They’re fading away/Watching the world come undone/Salvation begins as you pray/Raging storms/Bring the rain/How can I master the hurricane/Solid stone turns to clay/I feel the way to my cove will fade away.”  All of the nautical references, again, put the song in the vein of all the sea-faring themes throughout the album, but again, what audiences get here is the story of someone seeing things going from good to far from it and wondering how he or she will get through that storm.  The rumination continues in the song’s second verse, which states, “Braving the fires of hate and embers of scorn/Razing the towns where my pain’s engraved in the walls.”  From there a voice seemingly speaks to the subject, stating, “What is the trigger for all your fears/There is a secret I need to hear/How can you damage what you hold dear/I think I know/The answer is fear/You find the reason for all your pain/The relentless voice that is waging war in your head/And here you’re alone/Facing the storm/So please let it go.”  This is that reminder that the storm we all face is often brought on by us and that the way to navigate it is to let go of what is causing it to happen.  This uplifting overall message, paired with the song’s equally infectious musical arrangement makes the whole a strong example of what makes Pirates a welcome new offering from Visions of Atlantis.

‘Master The Hurricane’ is just one of the songs that serves to show Pirates’ strengths.  ‘Legion of the Seas’ is another prime example of what the record has to offer.  The musical arrangement featured in ‘Legion of the Seas’ is more familiar symphonic power metal for which the band has come to be known through its life.  The dual vocals pair with the noted symphonic element and heavier leanings to make the arrangement in whole such an enjoyable presentation.  It is just part of what makes this song notable.  The song’s lyrical content makes for its own share of interest.

On the surface, the song comes across lyrically as just a story about being at sea, taking the risk of the unknown journey.  The picture that the band paints through its lyrical content is o rich and vivid.  On a deeper level though (and this is just this critic’s interpretation), the lyrical theme is about so much more than that.  Rather, the theme is more of an allegory.  That is inferred through the mention in the song’s lead verse, of staying the course and having no remorse.  The second verse makes that seeming allegorical message even clearer as it states, “The journey’s now or never/Embrace your soul forever/You feel alive when cresting the waves/Just get yourself together/The crying times are over/And show the world the fine edge of your blade.”  That mention of the crying times are over and the journey being now or never comes across as a message of encouragement.  It tells listeners that they need to just get out and take risks in life, get past the bad times and just go for it.  Again, this is just this critic’s interpretation.  If in fact that is somewhere in the proverbial ballpark, then it is a wonderful, creative way for the band to deliver such an uplifting message.  That and the song’s musical arrangement collectively make the song overall yet another strong example of what makes Pirates worth hearing.  ‘Mercy’ is yet another mark of the album’s strength.

‘Mercy’ is another notable addition to Pirates in part because of its musical arrangement, which offers audiences more of the symphonic power metal that makes up the record’s body.  The subtle stylistic variance in the arrangement from its counterparts keep it original and unique from those works.  To that end, it does just enough to make it just as enjoyable as the rest of the album’s arrangements.

The lyrical content that accompanies the song’s musical content makes for its own share of engagement.  That is because again, it comes across as being so allegorical in nature.  On the surface, the content comes across as being a story about a pirate leader learning to lean more on a quality of mercy than just sheer brutality in everything.  This as the pirate leader learns of his own crew’s intent to betray him.  He sings of sharpening his blade and wanting to bring doom to them.  However as the song progresses, the crew prays for mercy and states in the chorus that “There is more power in pity than courage in hate.” That single line is in itself so powerful.  It comes across as that reminder that kindness and mercy is more powerful than the hate that we allow to fester in our minds.  Again, this is such a creative way to seemingly deliver such a message.  The seeming message even continues as the pirate captain sings late in the song, “Sailing across the sea/My heart as deep as the ocean/And the fire inside/has opened my eyes/I mist belong to the wise.”  That understanding that he must belong to the wise is that restatement of needing clarity of mind and heart.  It makes the song’s theme all the more powerful and resonant.  The final verse adds even more as the captain sings, “The day that I give in to mercy/I give up the violence that evil adores/The day that my burden is drowning/Over and over and over/The waves kiss the shores/The day that I let go of struggle/The day I’m completing the cycle.”  Once again, here is that realization of the power of wisdom and control versus hatred and anger.  It is, overall, such a moving message that the band has incorporated into the song, and in such creative fashion once more.  When this unique story and delivery is considered along with the song’s equally enjoyable musical arrangement, the whole makes fully clear why it is another important addition to Pirates’ body.  When it and the other songs examined here are considered along with the rest of the album’s entries, the whole becomes a presentation that will appeal equally to the band’s established audiences as it will to power metal and hard rock fans alike.

Pirates, the latest studio offering from Visions of Atlantis, is a successful new offering from the veteran power metal band.  That is proven through its musical and lyrical content alike.  The songs examined here make that fully clear.  Between the unique power metal musical arrangements and the unique lyrical content that delivers messages that will resonate with plenty of audiences, the whole makes for so much that audiences will appreciate.  It makes the album a wonderful musical treasure not just for Visions of Atlantis’ fans, but for power metal and hard rock fans alike.

Pirates is available now through Napalm Records. More information on Visions Of Atlantis’ new album is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttps://www.visionsofatlantis.at

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/visionsofatlantisofficial

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.

Evergrey Debuts New LP’s Third Single

Courtesy: Napalm Records

Evergrey unveiled another single from its new album this week.

The band premiered its new single, ‘Call Out The Dark‘ Friday. The single is the third song from the band’s brand new album, album, A Heartless Portrait (The Orphean Testament), which was released Friday through Napalm Records. The album has also produced the singles, ‘Save Us‘ and ‘Midwinter Calls.’

The musical arrangement featured in the new single is a rich, deeply emotional composition. The use of the keyboards alongside the vocals, and the contrast thereof to the subtlety of the guitars makes for plenty of engagement and entertainment.

No information was provided about the song’s lyrical theme. No lyrics are available with the song’s visualizer.

The track listing for Evergrey’s new album is noted below along with the formats on which it will release.

A Heartless Portrait (The Orphean Testament) tracklisting:
1. Save Us
2. Midwinter Calls
3. Ominous
4. Call Out the Dark
5. The Orphean Testament
6. Reawakening
7. The Great Unwashed
8. Heartless
9. Blindfolded
10.Wildfires

In other news, Evergrey has planned a European tour in support of its new album. The tour is scheduled to launch Sept. 16 in Eindhoven, NL and to run through Oct. 23 in Paris France. It also features performances in cities across Europe, such as Budapest, HU; Hannover, DE, and Dublin, IE.

The tour’s schedule is noted below. Tickets are available here.

EVERGREY – European Tour 2022
+ special guest: Fractal Universe
+ Virtual Symmetry


16.09.22 NL – Eindhoven / Dynamo
17.09.22 GB – London / 229 venue
18.09.22 GB – Nottingham / Rescue Rooms
19.09.22 GB – Bristol / Thekla
20.09.22 GB – Manchester / Academy 3
21.09.22 IE – Dublin / Voodoo Lounge
22.09.22 GB – Glasgow / Cathouse
23.09.22 GB – Newcastle / St Dom’s Social Club
24.09.22 GB – Birmingham / The Asylum 2
25.09.22 NL – Leiden / Gebr. De Nobel
27.09.22 DE – Bremen / Tivoli
28.09.22 DE – Stuttgart / Im Wizemann Club
29.09.22 DE – Berlin / Columbia Theater
30.09.22 DE – Hamburg / Bahnhof Pauli
01.10.22 DE – Oberhausen / Resonanzwerk
02.10.22 DE – Lindau / Club Vaudeville
03.10.22 FR – Colmar / Le Grillen
04.10.22 DE – München / Backstage Halle
05.10.22 DE – Hannover / Faust
06.10.22 DE – Aschaffenburg / Colos-Saal
07.10.22 BE – Vosselaar / Biebob
08.10.22 DE – Mannheim / 7er Club
09.10.22 SI – Ljubljana / Orto Bar
11.10.22 HU – Budapest / Barba Negra
12.10.22 AT – Graz / Dom im Berg
13.10.22 PL – Wroclaw / Akademia
14.10.22 AT – Wien / Viper Room
15.10.22 DE – Nürnberg / Hirsch
16.10.22 DE – Trier / Mergener Hof
17.10.22 CH – Luzern / Schüür
18.10.22 FR – Lyon / CCO Villeurbanne
19.10.22 ES – Barcelona / Boveda
20.10.22 ES – Madrid / Shoko
21.10.22 ES – Pamplona / Totem
22.10.22 FR – Toulouse / L’Usine
23.10.22 FR – Paris / Petit Bain

More information on Evergrey’s new single, video, album, and tour is available along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

Websitehttps://evergrey.net

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/Evrergrey

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/evergreysweden

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

Visions Of Atlantis Debuts New Single, ‘Master The Hurricane,’ Companion Video

Courtesy: Napalm Records

Visions of Atlantis dropped its latest album, Pirates Friday through Napalm Records, but not before releasing one more single from the brand new album Wednesday.

The band premiered its new single, ‘Master The Hurricane‘ Wednesday, along with its companion video. The premiere of the new single follows those of the album’s other singles, ‘Melancholy Angel‘ and ‘Legion of the Seas.’ All of the familiar power metal leanings presented in those singles is just as evident here, though the song still boasts its own identity separate from those songs and the album’s other entries. The comparisons to works from the likes of Sabaton, Helion Prime, and Epica are just as easy to make in this case as in the other songs.

The video featured with the song presents the band aboard a ship trying to navigate an old pirate ship through a very dangerous storm. Vocalist Michele Guaitol sees the whole thing happen as an unidentified figure holds a gem in hand that acts like a crystal ball, showing the story happen.

Once again, no information was provided in the press release announcing the debut of the band’s new single and video. No lyrics are provided with the video, either.

Pirates‘ track listing and available platforms are noted below.

Pirates tracklist:
1. Pirates will Return
2. Melancholy Angel
3. Master the Hurricane
4. Clocks
5. Freedom
6. Legion of the Seas
7. Wild Elysium
8. Darkness Inside
9. In my World
10. Mercy
11. Heal the Scars
12. I will be Gone


Pirates is available in the following formats:

  • Wooden Deluxe Box (incl. digisleeve, flag, hip flask, signed autograph card) – strictly limited to 300
  • Canvas (100x50cm) + CD Digisleeve – strictly limited to 100
  • 2 LP Gatefold GLOW IN THE DARK – strictly limited to 300
  • 2 LP Gatefold Black
  • CD Digisleeve
  • Digital Album

More information on Visions Of Atlantis’ new album, single, video, and tour is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttps://www.visionsofatlantis.at

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/visionsofatlantisofficial

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.

Grave Digger Announces New Album Details

Courtesy: Rock of Angels Records

Grave Digger will release its latest album this summer.

The band announced Friday, it is scheduled to release its new album, Symbol of Eternity Aug. 26 through Rock of Angels Records. It will come more than two years after the release of the band’s then latest album, Fields of Blood.

The album will release separately on a variety of platforms, all of which are noted below.

Digipack CD Limited 2CD Mediabook (CD 2: Live at Metal Hammer Paradise)

Red transparent / Gold Splatter Vinyl (LTD. 300)

Purple / Golden / White Splatter Vinyl (LTD. 300)

Sun Yellow / Golden / White / Red Splatter Vinyl (LTD. 300)

Picture Disc (LTD. 300)

Gold Vinyl (LTD. 300)

Black Vinyl (LTD. 300)

Super limited to 500 copies collector’s hardcover boxset that includes: the limited 2CD mediabook, Flag 115 x 75 cm, armband with metallic 3D emblem, A3 poster, signed autograph card and certificate of authenticity!  

In addition, the new album will release through three exclusive, limited vinyl pressings, which are also noted below.

Ocean Blue Vinyl (LTD. 100) — musicmegastore.com exclusive

Orange Vinyl (LTD. 300) — EMP exclusive

Violet Vinyl (LTD. 100) – Napalm Records exclusive

Symbol of Eternity‘s track listing is noted below.

TRACK LIST (CD 1 –Digipack Version-):
1.  The Siege of Akkon 
2.  Battle Cry 
3.  Hell is my Purgatory 
4.  King of the Kings 
5.  Symbol of Eternity 
6.  Saladin 
7.  Nights of Jerusalem 
8.  Heart of a Warrior 
9.  Grace of God 
10.  Sky of Swords 
11.  Holy Warfare 
12.  The Last Crusade 
13.  Hellas Hellas
 
TRACKLIST (CD 2 -Live at Metal Hammer Paradise / Mediabook version-):
 1.  The Clansman`s Journey 
2.  Healed by Metal 
3.  The clans will rise again 
4.  Lawbreaker 
5.  The Roundtable 
6.  The Curse of Jacques 
7.  Season of the Witch 
8.  Excalibur 
9.  Rebellion 
10.  Witch Hunter 
11.  Heavy Metal Breakdown

Symbol of Eternity was produced by Chris Boltendahl and Axel Ritt. Boltendahl also mixed and mastered the record. More information on the album is available along with all of Grave Digger’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://www.grave-digger-clan/de

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/gravediggerofficial

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/GRAVEDIGGERclan

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.

Visions Of Atlantis Debuts New Album’s Second Single, Video

Courtesy: Napalm Records

Power metal band Visions of Atlantis debuted the latest single and video from its forthcoming album this week.

The band premiered its new single, ‘Melancholy Angel’ and its companion video Tuesday. The song and its video are the second from the band’s forthcoming album, Pirates, which is scheduled for release May 13 through Napalm Records. The band premiered the album’s lead single, ‘Legion of the Seas’ and its video March 7.

The musical arrangement featured in ‘Melancholy Angel’ is another familiar power metal opus from the band that the group’s fans will find appealing. In comparison to its predecessor, this single is more of a mid-tempo composition and leans more heavily on its string arrangements than that song. What’s more, the song’s mood is more contemplative in nature than ‘Legion of the Seas.’

No information about the song’s lyrical theme was provided in the press release announcing the debut of the new single and video. No lyrics are provided with the video, either.

The video finds the band, still in full pirate regalia, on a beach at night, campfire blaring. The group is performing its new single against the backdrop as the song plays over the visualization.

In other news, Visions of Atlantis is on tour with Dragonforce. The bands’ current tour schedule is noted below.


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 Firewind

Pirates‘ track listing and available platforms are noted below.

Pirates tracklist:
1. Pirates will Return
2. Melancholy Angel
3. Master the Hurricane
4. Clocks
5. Freedom
6. Legion of the Seas
7. Wild Elysium
8. Darkness Inside
9. In my World
10. Mercy
11. Heal the Scars
12. I will be Gone


Pirates will be available in the following formats:

  • Wooden Deluxe Box (incl. digisleeve, flag, hip flask, signed autograph card) – strictly limited to 300
  • Canvas (100x50cm) + CD Digisleeve – strictly limited to 100
  • 2 LP Gatefold GLOW IN THE DARK – strictly limited to 300
  • 2 LP Gatefold Black
  • CD Digisleeve
  • Digital Album

More information on Visions Of Atlantis’ new album, single, video, and tour is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttps://www.visionsofatlantis.at

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/visionsofatlantisofficial

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.

Evil Invaders’ Latest LP Is A Mostly Successful Record

Courtesy: Napalm Records

Veteran metal outfit Evil Invaders released its latest album, Shattering Reflection Friday through Napalm Records. The band’s first third album and its first in nearly five years, it is a presentation that the metal masses will find worth hearing every now and then. That is due in large part to its wide range of metal arrangements, which will be discussed shortly. While the record’s musical arrangements do well for its presentation, their companion lyrical content sadly detracts somewhat from the presentation. This will be discussed a little later. The record’s production works with the arrangements to make for more engagement and entertainment. It will be discussed later. Each item noted is important in its own way to the whole of the album’s presentation. All things considered, they make the album a mostly successful new outing for Evil Invaders.

Evil Invaders’ new album, Shattering Reflections, is a mostly successful offering that most metal fans will find worth hearing every now and then. That is due in large part to its featured musical arrangements. From start to end, the album’s 10 separate musical arrangements take listeners on a nice ride. Right from the outset, ‘Hissing in Crescendo,’ listeners are presented with an arrangement that is full-on vintage thrash metal. Front man Johannes “Joe” Van Audenhove’s half-sung screams pair with the razor sharp guitar riffs and fully precise time keeping and rich bass line to lend the whole to comparison to works from a wide range of the band’s counterparts. At some points, vintage Overkill can be heard in the arrangement. At others, Slayer front man Tom Araya comes to mind thanks to Van Audenhove’s vocal style. What’s more, audiences can also make comparisons to works from Exodus through the combination. It is just one way in which the musical arrangements prove so pivotal to the whole of this record. ‘Die For Me,’ which immediately follows, immediately lends itself to the sounds of Iron Maiden with the harmonies and style in the guitars. The vocals meanwhile are still borderline Araya-esque. On yet another note, a song, such as ‘My World’ conjures thoughts of vintage Metallica and Megadeth to a point. Though as it progresses, really enters another realm, adding to the interest. Simply put, the musical arrangements that the band presents throughout the record offer listeners a relatively healthy sampling of vintage metal styles. That forms a strong foundation for the record and makes it worth hearing.

While the musical content featured throughout the album forms a solid foundation for the presentation, that content’s companion lyrical content detracts from the record’s presentation to a point. The lyrical content is familiar, as Van Audenhove has noted in interviews. He has pointed out that it features themes of personal, inner thoughts, as well as ruminations on things going on in the world. That is a good thing. The thing of it all is the way in which he approaches those topics. Van Audenhove wrote the songs’ lyrics in a way that does leave some room for misinterpretation. What’s more, because of the way in which they are presented, and the very heavy nature of those themes, it is going to require audiences to be in a very specific mindset when listening to the album. Case in point is the theme featured in ‘In Deepest Black’ and ‘Eternal Darkness.’ Both of those songs come across as being about being in that dark mental and emotional place. Everyone has been there at one point or another in life, but the way in which the lyrics are presented makes these presentations very deep. If someone is not in that required head space, he/she will not fully appreciate the songs. In the case of, say, ‘Die For Me,’ the song opens sounding like something about someone who is dealing with backstabbers, which again is relatable for audiences. From there though, the song then turns and starts sounding more like something about a cult leader and in turn can easily be misinterpreted. So this is an example of how the album’s lyrical content does prove somewhat problematic to the record’s presentation. The content overall is not enough to make the album a failure, but is still of note, regardless.

Keeping in mind that the record’s lyrical content does not do enough to make the album a failure, there is one more item to note in examining the album’s presentation. That item is the album’s production. The production of the musical arrangements is important because of its role in the record’s general effect. The utmost attention had to be paid to each song from the more intense moments to the more reserved compositions. The more intense compositions required attention to make sure that no one part overpowered the others and each line complimented the others. In the matter of the deeper, more emotional moments, the added attention was there so as to have the fullest impact on listeners. Those painstaking efforts paid off, too. The result is that from beginning to end, the album’s general effect does just as much to keep listeners engaged and entertained as the album’s musical content. When the content and production are considered together, they make the album, again, worth hearing occasionally.

Evil Invaders’ latest album, Shattering Reflection, is an interesting new offering from the band. Its appeal comes largely through its featured musical arrangements. The arrangements are of note because of the wide range of vintage metal styles presented throughout the album. From influences of Judas Priest and Iron Maiden, to those of Slayer, Exodus and others, the arrangements will reach a wide range of metal fans. While the record’s musical arrangements for a solid foundation for its presentation, the album’s lyrical content detracts somewhat from the presentation. That is because on one hand, much of it leaves itself too open for misinterpretation in how it is presented. On another hand, it also requires listeners to be in a very specific mindset in order to fully appreciate said content. Luckily, even with all of this in mind, the record’s lyrical content is not enough to make the album a failure. Keeping that in mind, the album’s production works with the musical content to make the album more worth hearing. The production is important to note because it balances the vocals and instrumentation from beginning to end, ensuring each musician’s performance is expertly balanced with that of one another. What’s more it also ensures the emotional impact of each arrangement is its fullest through that balance. Each item examined here is important in its own way to the whole of the album’s presentation. All things considered, the album proves itself to be a presentation that a wide range of metal fans will find worth hearing every now and then.

Shattering Reflections is available now through Napalm Records. More information on the album is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Website: https://evilinvaders.be

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/evilinvadersbe

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

Evergrey Premieres New Album’s Latest Single, Video; Fall European Tour Planned

Courtesy: Napalm Records

Evergrey debuted the latest single from its new album and the song’s video this week.

The band premiered its new single, ‘Midwinter Calls’ and its video Thursday. The song is the second from the band’s forthcoming album, A Heartless Portrait (The Orphean Testament), which is scheduled for release May 20 through Napalm Records. The band premiered the album’s lead single, ‘Save Us’ and its video last month.

The musical arrangement featured in ‘Midwinter Calls’ is a presentation that longtime Evergrey fans will find interesting. That is because in comparison to its existing catalog, this song takes the band in a more streamlined, almost mainstream direction. That is evidenced through its melodic hard rock approach. The keyboards and the familiar choral element are there once again, but the overall approach and sound does not come across as big and eventful as its existing works, for lack of better wording. That is not to say it is a bad song by any means. Rather, it is certain to engage and entertain audiences because it shows the band maintaining a certain familiarity while also seemingly treading into musical areas that it has rarely if ever touched on until now.

No information was provided about the song’s lyrical theme in the press release announcing the premiere of the new single and video. According to the band, the new video is the second chapter in a three-part story that is told from the end to the beginning. The band is shown blindfolded and restrained by a group of masked men before being placed in a van and being taken out in the middle of nowhere and left there. Meanwhile, the video’s other half shows the band performing its new single on a sound stage. The song plays over the whole as it all happens.

Evergrey’s new album will come a little more than a year after the release of the band’s then latest album, Escape of the Phoenix, which was released in February 2021 through AFM Records. It was followed up with the release of the band’s new live recording, Live: Before The Aftermath in January.

The track listing for Evergrey’s new album is noted below along with the formats on which it will release.

A Heartless Portrait (The Orphean Testament) tracklisting:
1. Save Us
2. Midwinter Calls
3. Ominous
4. Call Out the Dark
5. The Orphean Testament
6. Reawakening
7. The Great Unwashed
8. Heartless
9. Blindfolded
10.Wildfires

A Heartless Portrait (The Orphean Testament) will be available in the following formats:
Deluxe Box (incl. Canvas, Pendant, Liner Notes on Pergament Paper) – limited to 500 copies worldwide
2LP Gatefold “Die Hard” Marbled Red/Black (incl. Slipmat + 7inch (black) w/ 2 exclusive Bonus Tracks) – limited to 500 copies worldwide
2LP Gatefold Glow in the Dark – limited to 500 copies worldwide
2LP Gatefold Black
2LP Gatefold Gold  –  Band exclusive, limited to 300 copies worldwide
CD Digisleeve
Digital Album

Courtesy: Napalm Records

In other news, Evergrey has planned a European tour in support of its new album. The tour is scheduled to launch Sept. 16 in Eindhoven, NL and to run through Oct. 23 in Paris France. It also features performances in cities across Europe, such as Budapest, HU; Hannover, DE, and Dublin, IE.

The tour’s schedule is noted below. Tickets are available here.

EVERGREY – European Tour 2022
+ special guest: Fractal Universe
+ Virtual Symmetry


16.09.22 NL – Eindhoven / Dynamo
17.09.22 GB – London / 229 venue
18.09.22 GB – Nottingham / Rescue Rooms
19.09.22 GB – Bristol / Thekla
20.09.22 GB – Manchester / Academy 3
21.09.22 IE – Dublin / Voodoo Lounge
22.09.22 GB – Glasgow / Cathouse
23.09.22 GB – Newcastle / St Dom’s Social Club
24.09.22 GB – Birmingham / The Asylum 2
25.09.22 NL – Leiden / Gebr. De Nobel
27.09.22 DE – Bremen / Tivoli
28.09.22 DE – Stuttgart / Im Wizemann Club
29.09.22 DE – Berlin / Columbia Theater
30.09.22 DE – Hamburg / Bahnhof Pauli
01.10.22 DE – Oberhausen / Resonanzwerk
02.10.22 DE – Lindau / Club Vaudeville
03.10.22 FR – Colmar / Le Grillen
04.10.22 DE – München / Backstage Halle
05.10.22 DE – Hannover / Faust
06.10.22 DE – Aschaffenburg / Colos-Saal
07.10.22 BE – Vosselaar / Biebob
08.10.22 DE – Mannheim / 7er Club
09.10.22 SI – Ljubljana / Orto Bar
11.10.22 HU – Budapest / Barba Negra
12.10.22 AT – Graz / Dom im Berg
13.10.22 PL – Wroclaw / Akademia
14.10.22 AT – Wien / Viper Room
15.10.22 DE – Nürnberg / Hirsch
16.10.22 DE – Trier / Mergener Hof
17.10.22 CH – Luzern / Schüür
18.10.22 FR – Lyon / CCO Villeurbanne
19.10.22 ES – Barcelona / Boveda
20.10.22 ES – Madrid / Shoko
21.10.22 ES – Pamplona / Totem
22.10.22 FR – Toulouse / L’Usine
23.10.22 FR – Paris / Petit Bain

More information on Evergrey’s new single, video, album, and tour is available along with all of the band’s latest news and more at:

Websitehttps://evergrey.net

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/Evrergrey

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/evergreysweden

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

Dee Snider Premieres ‘Stand (For Ukraine)’ Video

Courtesy: Napalm Records

Dee Snider paid tribute to the people of Ukraine this week with a special video for his latest single.

Snider premiered his ‘Stand (For Ukraine)’ video Thursday as part of his World United Live support program. The video features news footage of Russia’s unprovoked attack on the people of Ukraine and the impact of Russia’s attack on the nation.

Snider talked about the video’s premiere in a prepared statement.

“About a month ago, someone on social media told me people in Ukraine were using Twisted Sister’s “We’re Not Gonna Take It” as a battle cry and asked if I was cool with it,” Snider said. “Of course I was. My response elicited someone asking me why I was okay with Ukrainians using my song and not some other groups. I won’t repeat my exact response (it was a bit political), but that tweet went internationally viral. Every news agency in the world suddenly wanted to talk to me.”

Snider continued, “At that very moment, some great people (who were all friends of mine) were hatching the idea for World United Live and asked me if I would spearhead the organization. How could I say no? Since then, we have been beating the drum for the free world to come together, not only in support of Ukraine and condemnation of Putin, but in sending a message to the Russian people that they are misinformed and not being told the truth. Now, with the help of the likes of Arnold Schwarzenegger and many others, we are doing just that!”

He concluded, “About a week ago, it hit me that the song “Stand” from my last Napalm Records album, Leave a Scar, fit the crisis in Ukraine perfectly… but I had already released a video for “Stand” recently.  Yet I just couldn’t get around how well the lyrics resonated with Putin’s attack on these innocent people. Ukraine was the furthest thing from my mind when I wrote the words for that song, yet it was like I had done just that. So, I had a couple of incredibly talented people (Scott Pitek and Steve Sage Goldberg) cut together a new video using some live concert footage and news clips. The result is devastating. Please watch and share “Stand (With Ukraine)” and join us at www.worldunited.live. Help save the world. Together we can.”

Snider premiered the original ‘Stand’ video and the single last month. The original video paid tribute to the victims of the fire that destroyed The Station night club Feb. 23, 2003 in West Warwick, RI.

‘Stand’ is featured in Snider’s most recent album, Leave a Scar, which he released in 2021 through Napalm Records.

More information on Snider’s new ‘Stand’ video and his new album, Leave a Scar, is available along with all of his latest news and more at:

Websitehttps://deesnider.com

Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/facedeesnider

Twitterhttps://twitter.com/deesnider

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.

Firewind To Join Dragonforce Tour Sunday

Courtesy: Earsplit PR

Firewind will join Dragonforce for its tour starting this weekend.

The veteran metal band is scheduled to join Dragonforce for its headlining tour starting Sunday in Denver, CO. The band’s run with Dragonforce is in support of its latest album, Firewind, which was released in 2020 through AFM Records.

FIrewind’s run with Dragonforce is scheduled to last through April 23 in Berkeley, CA and will see the band perform in cities, such as Greensboro, NC; Dallas, TX and Cleveland, OH. The schedule for the band’s tour with Dragonforce is noted below.

DragonForce North American tour dates
w/ Firewind, Visions of Atlantis, Seven Spires

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

Also joining Dragonforce for its tour are Visions of Atlantis and Seven Spires.

More information on Firewind’s upcoming tour and album is available online along with the band’s latest news at:

Websitehttp://www.firewind.gr

Facebookhttp://www.facebook.com/firewindofficial

Twitterhttp://twitter.com/firewindmusic

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.

Visions Of Atlantis Announces New Album Specs; Debuts Lead Single’s Video

Courtesy: Napalm Records

Power metal band Visions of Atlantis will release its next album this spring.

The band announced Monday, it will release its eighth album, Pirates, May 13 through Napalm Records. In anticipation of the album’s release, the band premiered the video for the album’s lead single, ‘Legion of the Seas’ the same day.

The video features the band, dressed as pirates, performing its new single on a sound stage. Meanwhile the story of a pair of pirates plays out, with one of the men having a less than happy ending. All of this plays out as the band’s new single plays over the visualization.

The musical arrangement featured in the band’s new single will appeal to any power metal fan. The control and harmonies in the vocals pair well with the instrumentation, which features a stirring string arrangement at its base. The guitars and drums pair with the strings to make the overall arrangement comparable to works from Helion Prime and other similar power metal acts. Audiences could even make comparisons to works from Sabaton to a lesser degree.

The band talked about the song’s lyrical theme in a prepared statement.

“‘Legion of the Seas’ is a statement song that embodies the mindset we carry throughout the entire record,” the statement reads. “No matter what we are facing, we remain the masters of ourselves and our lives. We are delighted to welcome the listeners on board of this new age of Visions of Atlantis with this powerful video, for one of the heaviest songs of the record. Acting scenes meet a fiery band performance, all in a very cinematic way, conveying our universe the best way.”

Visions of Atlantis is on tour with Dragonforce. The bands’ current tour schedule is noted below.

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 Firewind

Pirates‘ track listing and available platforms are noted below.

Pirates tracklist:
1. Pirates will Return
2. Melancholy Angel
3. Master the Hurricane
4. Clocks
5. Freedom
6. Legion of the Seas
7. Wild Elysium
8. Darkness Inside
9. In my World
10. Mercy
11. Heal the Scars
12. I will be Gone


Pirates will be available in the following formats:

  • Wooden Deluxe Box (incl. digisleeve, flag, hip flask, signed autograph card) – strictly limited to 300
  • Canvas (100x50cm) + CD Digisleeve – strictly limited to 100
  • 2 LP Gatefold GLOW IN THE DARK – strictly limited to 300
  • 2 LP Gatefold Black
  • CD Digisleeve
  • Digital Album

More information on Visions Of Atlantis’ new album, single, video, and tour is available along with all of the band’s latest news at:

Website: https://www.visionsofatlantis.at

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

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.