Nile, with Krisiun, In Element, and Decrepid – ‘The Garage’, London – 06/11/2022

Nile, with Krisiun, In Element, and Decrepid
‘The Garage’, London
06/11/2022
Live Review & Photos by Chris Galea

DECREPID

Decrepid are a local Brutal Death Metal band – as far as I can remember this was my first foray into their music. They sounded tight and intense … jeez, if this was only the first band, I dread to imagine how flayed my body and mind will be by the end of the event. Anyway, the vocals sounded particularly fierce and occasionally I heard some cool guitar licks amongst a ferocious barrage of riffs.

https://www.facebook.com/decrepid

IN ELEMENT

In Element stood out from the rest of the bill but not necessarily for the right reasons. The band does a sort of Industrial / Nu-Metal cross-bred with Crematory-type sonorities. They sounded a bit lost to me to be honest and definitely weren’t my cup of tea. At times their singer kept babbling incoherently for more than my patience could endure. As in the case of Decrepid, In Element had very little stage space to move about. Consequentially their singer performed standing on the pit barrier, and it was weird avoiding any collisions when I skirted from one side of the pit to the other to take my photos. Brownie points to the band for their efforts in providing a visually impactful show despite stage restrictions.

https://www.facebook.com/inelement/

KRISIUN

Krisiun’s confidence in delivering the goods was clear as the band steam-rolled through their set with fearsome tightness. In case you’ve been hiding under a rock for the past thirty years, Krisiun, from Brazil, infuse the aural menace of Thrash and Death Metal. The Kolesne brothers that make up the band performed a sort of greatest hits from their vast repertoire with an understandable leaning towards their new album “Mortem Solis”.

The Garage happily lapped everything up and the band members seemed quite pleased at the audience’s reaction. Highlights for me included some guitar shredding from Moyses Kolesne that I hadn’t always picked up from the band’s recordings. Set closer ‘Hatred Inherit’ was particularly impressive too but was delivered with the same passion that the trio showed for the whole set. Quite a good live band.

https://www.facebook.com/krisiun.official/

NILE

Nile upped the ante in terms of brutality and the crowd responded to that with some serious moshing. Sounding immensely tight, the U.S.A. quartet delivered its own brand of Death Metal inspired by Ancient Egypt and its grim mythology.

Behind the drum kit, George Kollias was particularly impressive … tight, precise and relentless. I remember meeting him when he was playing with Greek band Nightfall … he has built up quite a name for himself since then. Similarly, guitarist, band founder and riff-meister Karl Sanders was excellent as he flew through one intricate series of riffs to another without getting entangled.

Despite the fact that the band members seem to work well together, this line-up is actually quite new. Brian Kingsland, on guitar and lead vocals, joined just as the band started working on “Vile Nilotic Rites”, Nile’s most recent album, from which the band played a couple of numbers tonight. Bass player and lead growler Julian David Guillen has only been with Nile for a few weeks, and this is in fact his very first tour with the band. 

Thankfully I exited The Garage relatively unscathed but pleased as it had been a while since I attended such a good Death Metal gig.

https://www.facebook.com/nilecatacombs

LINKS:

Venue:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. Photography property of Chris Galea It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Empire Drowns – Nothing

Nothing Album Cover Art

Empire Drowns – Nothing
Uprising Records
Release Date: 21/11/2022
Running Time: 28:39 
Review by Chris Galea
8.5/10

Sometimes darkness can be a source of warmth and solace… This is the territory where you’d find bands such as Empire Drowns. “Nothing” is only the Danes’ second release in almost 12 years of existence so I might be forgiven for being hitherto unaware of the band. Recriminations aside, let’s shed some light on this album…

I use the word ‘album’ indecisively because since it clocks less than 30 minutes I’m almost tempted to call it an EP. Anyhoo, the album (let’s stick with that epithet, shall we?) kicks off with an instrumental intro and it strikes me that there’s no logical reason as to why the intro to ‘Purity’ (the second track) is featured separately. All these trivialities fall by the wayside, however, as soon as the Doom Death sonorities of ‘Purity’ drags you into the world of Empire Drowns. 

If you’ve ever taken pleasure in immersing yourself in the woes of the British Doom Death triumvirate of My Dying Bride, Paradise Lost and (early) Anathema and if you are also partial to Gothic Rock, then “Nothing” will send shivers down your spine. The Death Metal vocals of Michael Hvolgaard Andersen sound fierce and expressive and sometimes veer precariously close to Black Metal temperaments. And Thomas Birk provides the album with welcome embellishments through his guitar sweeps.

But for me one of the strongest selling points of “Nothing” is the multi-faceted and intense songwriting. Nothing I’d call ‘groundbreaking’ mind you, but Empire Drowns deliver the material with palpable passion.

This was most definitely a welcome surprise.

‘Purity’ Lyric Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. I Am
02. Purity
03. Anesthesia
04. Nothing
05. Gone
06. Loved

LINE-UP:
Thomas Birk – Guitars
Kim Jørgensen – Drums
Anders Ro Nielsen – Keys
Marco Angioni – Bass
Michael Hvolgaard Andersen – Vocals

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Stryper – The Final Battle

The Final Battle Album Cover Art

Stryper – The Final Battle

Frontiers Music srl

Release Date: 12/10/22

Running Time: 46:23 

Review by: Chris Galea 

8.5/10

Dubious record label policies affected the tardiness of this review’s publication but nevertheless I felt the album merited a few words on these virtual pages. I remember, back in the late 1980s, being engrossed by this band’s music… A music that’s come to be inseparable from the religiously-themed lyrics of the songs. Almost 40 years later, not only hasn’t “The Final Battle” lost any of that early exuberance but this is quite possibly one of Stryper’s strongest albums.

It kicks off with all guns blazing – ‘Transgressor’ is heavy as hell without forgoing Stryper’s characteristic choir vocals and strong melodies. This song is also an accurate representation of the whole album, which is heavy, melodic and has Michael Sweet’s lead vocals in tip-top shape. This is not to say that each song is indistinguishable from the next. To give a few examples: ‘The Way, The Truth, The Life’ has a slower but pulsating tempo while ‘Heart & Soul’ is characterised by crunching riffs, tempo changes and inspired guitar solos from Oz Fox.

The album is also very well produced and the sound picks up on all the subtle nuances of the songs’ melodies. I get the impression that this time Stryper has devoted significant attention not only to the quality of the individual songs but also to the album as a holistic product.

In a recent interview Michael Sweet lamented how the band still remains underacknowledged after all these years and after 13 studio albums. But the band’s confidence certainly doesn’t seem dented. One hopes that this album title is not a dig at a finality of Stryper’s recording output and that we’ll hear from this band for more years to come.

‘Same Old Story’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Transgressor
02. See No Evil, Hear No Evil
03. Same Old Story
04. Heart & Soul
05. Near
06. Out, Up & In
07. Rise To The Call
08. The Way, The Truth, The Life
09. No Rest For Wicked
10. Till Death Do Us Part
11. Ashes To Ashes

LINE-UP:
Michael Sweet – Lead Vocals, Lead & Rhythm Guitar
Oz Fox – Lead and Rhythm Guitar, Vocals
Perry Richardson – Bass, Vocals
Robert Sweet – Drums & Percussion

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities. 

House Of Lords – Saints And Sinners

Saints And Sinners Album Cover Art

House Of Lords – Saints And Sinners
Frontiers Records s.r.l.
Release Date: 16/09/2022
Running Time: 51:24
Review by: Chris Galea 
8/10

In this new House Of Lords album, only vocalist James Christian remains from the original line-up and it wasn’t even Christian who conceived the band. Nevertheless, the band’s sound is more or less intact. And Christian’s voice is more than intact… in fact it’s really in top shape.

There’s a discernable fine quality in these songs, all within the niche of catchy Hard Rock with a nod to classic Whitesnake. Great vocal harmonies, more than competent musicianship, groove, ballads… all this and more bursts forth from the get go.

Sometimes the band almost runs out of steam, but before that actually happens along comes another great song to save the day. For my money “Saints And Sinners” is one of the band’s best album for years.

‘House Of The Lord’ Official Video 

TRACKLISTING:
01. Saints And Sinners
02. House Of The Lord
03. Take It All
04. Road Warrior
05. Mistress Of The Dark
06. Avalanche
07. Roll Like Thunder
08. Razzle Dazzle
09. Dreamin’ It All
10. Takin My Heart Back
11. Angels Fallen

LINE-UP:
James Christian – Vocals, Guitars
Jimi Bell – Guitars
Mark Mangold – Keyboards
Johan Koleberg – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Ginevra – We Belong To The Stars

We Belong To The Stars Album Cover Art

Ginevra – We Belong To The Stars
Frontiers Records s.r.l.
Release Date: 16/09/2022
Running Time: 47:56
Review by: Chris Galea 
7/10

“We Belong To The Stars” is a colour-by-numbers, song-oriented Melodic Hard Rock project from Sweden. Following an exchange of ideas between vocalist Kristian Fhyr and Frontiers Records, Ginevra started taking shape (note: not to be confused with another band called Ginevra, who are from Italy). The missing link was completed when guitarist Magnus Karlsson (Primal Fear, Starbreaker and a million other bands) came aboard.

The songwriting is catchy and for most part enjoyable with the occasional guitar lick further enlivening the proceedings. On the other hand, there were a few bits and pieces I found hard to swallow (the lazy “woo-oo-oo-oh” pseudo lyrics on ‘I’ll Be Around’…. the chugga-chugga rhythm guitar sounds on ‘The Fight’, etc.).

Need something to make those long car journeys appear shorter? Then look no further than “We Belong To The Stars”.

‘Sirens Calling’ Official video 

TRACKLISTING:
01. Siren’s Calling
02. Unbreakable
03. Apologize
04. Masquerade (feat. Chez Kane on vocals)
05. Break The Silence
06. Brokenhearted
07. We Belong To The Stars
08. I’ll Be Around
09. Falling To Pieces
10. The Fight
11. My Rock’n’roll

LINE-UP:
Kristian Fhyr – Vocals, Backing Vocals, Keyboards
Magnus Karlsson – Guitar, Keyboards
Jimmy Jay – Bass
Magnus Ulfstedt – Drum
Alessandro Del Vecchio – Keyboards

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso – Orlando: Le Forme dell’Amore

Orlando Le Forme dell'Amore Album Cover Art

Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso – Orlando: Le Forme dell’Amore
Inside Out Music
Release Date: 23/09/2022
Running Time: 01:15:55
Review by Chris Galea
8/10

Out of all the Italian Prog Rock bands of the 1970’s, Banco Del Mutuo Soccorso (BDMS) have been one of the most prolific. And the band’s quirky virtuosisms return once more with studio album number 16. It’s called “Orlando: Le Forme dell’Amore” and is a concept inspired by an epic 15th century poem by Ludovico Ariosto. Without a doubt, the subject matter is quite intriguing. Essentially the poem is about the difficult choices that love forces you to make.

Various musical elements find their way into this album…. Jazz, Prog, Tango, Funk, Rock… giving the album many shades and colours. To give a few examples, tracks such as ‘La Pianura Rossa’ (‘The Red Plains’) and ‘Il Paladino’ (‘The Paladin’) have elements of Liquid Tension Experiment. ‘Non Credere All Luna’ (‘Don’t Believe In The Moon’) makes a great use of saxophone while ‘La Maldicenza’ (‘The Slander’) is very synth-heavy. The album is quite long with numerous instrumental parts and songs which tend to segue into one another.

On the odd occasion the music does get a bit tedious but there are also several inspired moments. An example of the latter is ‘Moon Suite’, an epic song that’s more about the Earth than the moon. It’s a composition with a number of mood and tempo changes that perfectly encapsulates the band’s musical ethos.

“Orlando: Le Forme dell’Amore” is only the second album from BDMS to have Tony D’alessio on lead vocals. While he’s undoubtedly a talented and powerful singer, I felt that in this album he isn’t always on the ball with the material’s little nuances. 

I happen to be fluent in Italian, but I do believe that the album has a lot to offer even for fans unfamiliar with the language. “Orlando…” marks the fiftieth anniversary since BDMS’s formation while keyboardist Vittorio Nocenzi is the only founding member with the current line-up. 

If, despite the band’s longevity, you’re as yet unfamiliar with BDMS, think of Jethro Tull, Yes, Emerson Lake & Palmer… but, with an added zesty flavour.

‘Cadere O Volare’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Proemio (cover version) 
02. La Pianura Rossa 
03. Serve Orlando Adesso 
04. Non Mi Spaventa Più L’amore 
05. Non Serve Tremare 
06. Le Anime Deserte Del Mondo 
07. L’isola Felice 
08. La Maldicenza 
09. Cadere O Volare 
10. Il Paladino 
11. L’Amore Accade 
12. Non Credere Alla Luna 
13. Moon Suite 
14. Come È Successo Che Sei Qui 
15. Cosa Vuol Dire Per Sempre 

LINE-UP:
Tony D’alessio – Vocals
Vittorio Nocenzi – Vocals, Keyboards
Filippo Marchegianni – Guitars, Vocals
Nicola Di Già – Guitars
Marco Capozi – Bass
Fabio Moresco – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Saor – Origins

Origins Album Cover Art

Saor – Origins
Season Of Mist
Release Date: 24/06/2022
Running Time: 41:18
Review by Chris Galea 
10/10

It was abundantly clear, when I had reviewed Saor’s debut album back in 2013, that this was not your average run-of-the-mill one-man-band.  Andy Marshall, the driving force behind Saor, is one extremely talented chap who doesn’t seem shackled with any genre expectations. So while it’s awkward to pigeon-hole the music of Saor (actually a major selling point for me), there certainly are clear elements from Black Metal, Folk Metal and Death Metal.

With “Origins”, Mr.Marshall has truly outdone himself. The album’s songwriting is impeccable and the atmosphere is bewitching. There are a lot of folksy elements, such as the guitar melodies in the title-track or chants and the bagpipe sounds in ‘Fallen’, but those elements never steal the limelight. Indeed everything is always done with the compositional aspect of the song as the ultimate beneficiary. And it’s not just the atmosphere that intrigues: the riffs, for example, are both catchy and aggressive. Production-wise, “Origins” is very well balanced too and it’s hard to find fault with anything about this release. 

“Origins” is over in a jiffy and In fact, my only gripe is the album’s brevity. We need more of this great music!

‘Origins’ Official Music Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Call Of The Carnyx
02. Fallen
03. The Ancient Ones
04. Aurora
05. Beyond The Wall
06. Origins

LINE-UP:
Andy Marshall – songwriter, vocals & all instruments
+
Dylan Watson – session drums
Sophie Marshall – female backing vocals

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Mortal Sin – Mayhemic Destruction / Face Of Despair (Re-issues)

Mortal Sin – Mayhemic Destruction / Face Of Despair (Re-issues)
Cherry Red Records

Release Date: 24/06/22
Running Time: 35:24 (Mayhemic Destruction) / 43:34 (Face Of Despair)
Review by Chris Galea
7.5/10 (Mayhemic Destruction) / 8/10 (Face Of Despair)

Despite being flagbearers of Australian Metal, I get the feeling that Mortal Sin remain underacknowledged. That is partly why, despite the fact that I normally steer clear of re-issues, I accepted to write a few words about Mortal Sin’s first two albums… currently re-released by Cherry Red Records for a new generation of Metal fans.

“Mayhemic Destruction”

Back in 1986, a year after the band’s formation in Sydney, Mortal Sin released “Mayhemic Destruction”. Prior to that, the band members had already been honing their skills with local Metal acts Wizzard and Judge. Totally self-financed, “Mayhemic Destruction” was an album’s worth of demo tracks and reflected the band’s angst, naiveté and eagerness to push the boundaries of heaviness.

Reflecting on the band’s approach to this album, vocalist Matt Maurer said in a recent interview: “We had a lot of fun when we recorded the album. We basically went in there to have a party and just to see what our songs would sound like. It wasn’t very professional from our standpoint because we had no idea what we were doing.” (Stay Heavy webzine, 2022).

Although the album’s production was quite decent, it wasn’t as good as what other bands from U.S.A.’s west coast were coming up with at the time. This comparison is not accidental because Mortal Sin were directly influenced by the musical conjuring’s of peers such as Anthrax, Exodus, Slayer and Metallica. I mean “Mayhemic Destruction” even has a song called ‘Into The Fire’.

Songs such as ‘Lebanon’ and ‘Liar’ were, and still are, absolute Thrash gems. And the title-track was a calling to mosh-pits. Matt Maurer’s screams and range are impressive – his singing really raises the level of the songs a notch. “Mayhemic Destruction” revealed a band with lots of potential, and sure enough…

“Face Of Despair”

In the Spring of 1989, Mortal Sin released their second album “Face Of Despair”. Barely a few moments into the album, the intro and Andy Eftichiou’s bass-line of ‘I Am Immortal’ make it abundantly clear that Mortal Sin had upper their game. Guitarist Mick Burke replaced Keith Kristin in playing alongside Paul Caruana and this change seems to have resulted in sharper axework. 

But the most important change was actually the employment of Randy Burns to produce the album. Back then, Burns was starting to earn a reputation as the go-to guy for producing successful Metal albums – only a few months before doing “Face Of Despair” for Mortal Sin he had just engineered Possessed’s “Seven Churches” and Megadeth’s “Peace Sells…”. Indeed, “Face Of Despair” was, sonically-speaking, strides ahead of “Mayhemic Destruction”.

However, the shattering screams of Matt Maurer were gone and this was a rather disappointing factor. This is not to say that Maurer’s singing had regressed because, as songs such as ‘The Infantry Corps’ show, the album has very solid vocals. Another interesting note was that Maurer’s lyrics seem to be more politically-charged in this album.

With “Face Of Despair”, the comparisons with Anthrax (whether intentional or not) became even more pronounced and I’m not sure that that was a good thing. Nevertheless, the album contained no shortage of bona fide Thrash classics, such as ‘I Am Immortal’ and ‘Voyage Of The Disturbed’.

Just as “Face Of Despair” was being released, drummer Wayne Campbell was replaced by Steve Hughes, who today is known more for his stand-up comic routines than for his drumming. The band finally started to perform outside Australia but soon also Matt Maurer left. Line-up volatility, lack of adequate label support and the fact that it had taken Mortal Sin too long to export their brand of Thrash meant that the band’s future was uncertain. In reality the band’s longevity would prove greater, if somewhat irregular, than what omens were suggesting. But that’s another story.

“Mayhemic Destruction” is being re-released as digipak CD and red vinyl while “Face Of Despair” is being brought back to life in digipak and golden brown vinyl.

Current single YouTube link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKVc-Q0dQPA 

TRACKLISTING:
Mayhemic Destruction
01. The Curse (instrumental)
02. Women In Leather
03. Lebanon
04. Liar
05. Blood, Death, Hatred
06. Mortal Slaughter
07. Into the Fire
08. Mayhemic Destruction

Face Of Despair
01. I Am Immortal
02. Voyage of the Disturbed
03. The Infantry Corps
04. For Richer For Poorer
05. Martyrs of Eternity
06. Innocent Torture
07. Suspended Animation
08. H
09. Terminal Reward
10. Robbie Soles

LINE-UP:
Mat Maurer – Vocals
Paul Caruana – Guitars
Keith Kristin – Guitars (“Mayhemic Destruction” only)
Mick Burke – Guitars (“Face Of Despair” only)
Andy Eftichiou – Bass
Wayne Campbell – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Midnight, Night Demon, and Overthrow at New Cross Inn, London (England) 30/05/22

Midnight, Night Demon, Overthrow
New Cross Inn, London (England)
30/05/2022
Live Review and Photography by Chris Galea

To put matters in context…shortly before it was due to take place, Manorfest got cancelled. This was a great shame since its line-up of bands was nothing short of impressive. From all the bands scheduled to descend onto Whittlebury Park in central England, the bands from U.S.ofA. were in a particular quandary so they quickly tried to book some club dates in England to make their trip worth the while. Night Demon and Midnight were two such bands – instead of a festival scenario they got to play in a much more intimate setting. 

So here we are and local band Overthrow were tasked with breaking the ice. In fact, as I enter the New Cross Inn, Overthrow are just finishing their soundcheck. 

Overthrow

Despite the fact that Overthrow have been around for quite a while, this was my first foray into the band’s music. Blackened Thrash is how I’d categorize the band’s music – a genre I’ve heard many times before but Overthrow performed with an impressively tight and angst-ridden conviction.

Yes, I very much enjoyed Overthrow’s set and the crowd’s reaction suggested I wasn’t alone in that. In particular the last song in their set (which I later found out to be ‘Altar Of The Fallen’) seemed to grab the audience by the scruff of their necks and rattle them frenziedly. Such was the band’s impact. 

By that point the venue was already packed….things are looking good….

Set-list:
Pure Death
Ascension
Caustic
Seeds
Altar Of The Fallen

https://www.facebook.com/OverthrowUK

Night Demon

It’s been a while that I’ve been wanting to see Californian combo Night Demon perform live and tonight that wish comes true for the first time. The band’s music was different from that of Overthrow and Midnight….less aggressive but still very dynamic. Night Demon are directly influenced by the heaviest and most riff-laden bands of the NWOBHM. More to the point is the fact that I thoroughly enjoyed the band’s set.

As suggested earlier the trio had a very dynamic stage-presence and I had a hard time pinning them down for a few unblurred photos (always a good sign with Metal gigs). Night Demon always seemed to have an ear for the crowd’s mood and each song felt perfectly timed for the moment. Of course it helped that the band has such a great arsenal of songs in its repertoire.

Apparently the gear of Night Demon and Midnight got lost when the bands arrived in England (not a surprise really….the air travel industry has been in a shambles since Brexit). So kudos to both bands for giving the middle finger to adversity and making the most of tonight’s gig.

Set-list:
Screams In The Night
Empires Fall
Hallowed Ground
Vysteria
Kill The Pain
Howling Man
The Sun Goes Down
Dawn Rider
Are You Out There
Curse Of The Damned

https://nightdemon.net/

Midnight

For the benefit of Midnight virgins, the band (a trio…as Night Demon) plays a blackened Thrash with a Punk-like attitude. I had already been to Midnight shows before this night….always in festival scenarios….and to be totally honest I hadn’t been won over. However I have several European friends who heap praise upon Midnight so I was looking forward to re-assess this band. As the DJ stopped playing, the band members stepped onto the stage, and then…..all hell broke loose.

Besides the punters even the band members themselves stage-dived and crowd-surfed. At one point, while bassist/vocalist/band mentor Athenar was being carried from one side of the venue to the other, a member of the audience went up on stage to play his bass. I could have sworn I even saw a snare drum surfing the crowd at one point. The absence of any barrier between the audience and the low stage helped break down any psychological distinction between band and audience – it was one crowd, one Metal party.

From the street, the glance of a homeless man shifted from his bottle of booze to the venue’s transparent glass panes….his mind probably trying to decide whether he was witnessing reality or some alcohol-manufactured nightmare.

As Midnight finished their last number, the band members dumped their instruments onto the stage. Loud feedback echoed through the New Cross Inn as the trio walked through the spent audience and out of the venue.

It was a long time since I had last been to a gig with such a sweat-drenched and boisterous crowd thronging the venue. And I loved every moment of it.

Set-list:
(unavailable)

https://totalmidnight.webs.com/

LINKS:

New Cross Inn:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. All photographic images are the property of Chris Galea. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Las Cruces – Cosmic Tears

Las Cruces – Cosmic Tears
Ripple Music
Release Date: 03/06/2022
Running Time: 59:51

Review by Chris Galea
8.5/10

You know that feeling when you’re in a bustling crowd and yet you hear someone mention your name? Or when you’re passing through a food market and a particularly enticing odour gets you salivating and reels you in towards it? “Cosmic Tears”, the latest album from Las Cruces, sort of works in a similar way… It’s easy for the album to slip by unnoticed, but when you do pick it up you’ll forget everything else.

The D.N.A. of “Cosmic Tears” seems to come from Black Sabbath’s “Master Of Reality” and is as old-school as old-school Doom can get. From that the album morphs into quite a powerful beast. The music ranges from the psychedelic and plodding to the crushingly heavy, but is always played with passion.

As tracks such as ‘Wizard from the North’ or ‘Holy Hell’ indicate, there are monumentally heavy riffs all over the place. Another major selling-point is Mark Zamarron’s voice – powerful and intense… I dare say one of the best in this music niche. 

Even my least favourite tracks are actually still good songs. Sometimes the guitars meander a little bit but that quickly becomes water under the bridge.

Paul DeLeon, Las Cruces’ drummer, passed away a year ago, after having recorded this album. In fact, according to the band, the whole “Cosmic Tears” is being released as a tribute to Paul.

Las Cruces have been releasing, on average, one album every 12 years but when they do release an album they seem to make it well worth the wait. Case in point is “Cosmic Tears”.

‘Cosmic Tears’ Lyric Video:

TRACKLISTING:
01. Altar of the Seven Sorrows (instrumental)
02. Cosmic Tears
03. Stay
04. Wizard from the North
05. Reverend Trask
06. Egypt
07. Holy Hell
08. Terminal Drift (instrumental)
09. Relentless
10. The Wraith

LINE-UP:
Mark Zamarron – vocals
George Trevino – guitars
Mando Tovar – guitars
Jimmy Bell – bass
Paul DeLeon – drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Chris Galea and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.