EMQ’s With STINKBRUTE

Stinkbrute Logo

EMQ’s With STINKBRUTE

Hi everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Portuguese Brutal Death Metal/ Grindcore project, Stinkbrute. Huge thanks to main man, Bernardo Rebelo, for taking part.

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

Hello, I’m Bernardo Rebelo from Stinkbrute. The band started at the end of 2020 as a bit of a joke, I composed and recorded the first half of the first album as an EP. At the time my idea was to write the most gruesome Death Metal/Grindcore I could with the most ridiculous name I came up with in the moment and it was “Stinkbrute, The Gruesome Exchange of Bodily Fluids That Turned Into a Bile Duct Titan”, later I decided to stick with just Stinkbrute and the rest for the name of the first album.

How did you come up with your band name?

The name Stinkbrute as I mentioned before was part of the original name I had for the project, but with all my ideas coming together there was another big reason I wanted this name and it has to do with how little we think of animals, specifically farmed animals. When I think of Stink-Brute all I can imagine is a pig or a cow in horrible condition, dirty all around, with anger towards humans. And after we put them in those conditions, we have the audacity to call them dirty, disgusting or stinky.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

I am from Trafaria, Portugal, on the south side of the river by Lisbon. There are a lot of great underground bands out here and if it weren’t for them maybe I wouldn’t have started playing music. We have bands like Analepsy, Serrabulho and Grog that are very notable influences to me. Besides those kinds of niche/underground bands, Portugal isn’t very known for having a lot of metal, or good music in general, so I usually end up listening to foreign bands.  We do have a lot of underground and metal festivals which is great!

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

My latest release would be Stinkbrute’s debut full length album, “The Gruesome Exchange of Bodily Fluids That Turned Into a Bile Duct Titan”. I worked a lot on that album and hope people enjoy it!

Who have been your greatest influences?

My greatest influences for the project, besides the ones mentioned earlier, would be Napalm Death, Wormrot, perhaps even Full of Hell and Aborted.

What first got you into music?

Mainly what caught my interest in music were games, one of the first I can remember was Guitar Hero Metallica, that one really made me want to play and write music of my own. As a kid every game that had an amazing soundtrack would get my undivided attention, another game that got me really into metal was Brutal Legend.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician, who would it be?

Barney Greenway from Napalm Death! We agree on so many things that it would be awesome to write and play some songs with him, it goes without saying that his vocal performance is one of the best in metal, so he would for sure sound brutal in the kind of music that I play.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Maybe Wacken just by the sheer popularity of the festival. That and it’s relatively close to Portugal so I wouldn’t even have to switch continents. In Portugal I would love to play in Barroselas Metalfest, I think it’s the perfect festival for Stinkbrute.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

I have yet to discover that, I haven’t got anything from a fan yet!

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Stop abusing and exploiting animals for your personal gain and/or taste pleasure!

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

If I could only pick one, I would say The Rev from Avenged Sevenfold, I feel like he died way too early, even though he was a great musician, I know he still had an immense amount of untapped potential.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

This one is a tricky question for me because lately I haven’t been able to enjoy music as much as I used to. It’s very hard to reach your goals, and when all your money goes into trying to do that, it just becomes a spiral of demotivation. I’m still young but every cent I get goes straight into my music be it for strings, drum heads, cymbals (I break them a lot), cables and taking into account that my setup is fairly minimalistic and I only own drums, one bass and one guitar this adds up  in ways that I couldn’t have predicted before, not to mention promotion and art costs. If that wasn’t demotivating enough, I haven’t been able to have a stable space to keep my drums and actually practice with my bands, or record and make noise, so that’s also a big struggle for me. I have also suffered from tendinitis in the past as well as gained tinnitus from playing even though I always wear ear plugs.

Bottom line, I don’t encourage people to start bands or create music, the only reason I do it is because that’s the only thing I feel like I’m a bit good at.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

If I had to pick one aspect, it is that the music industry has to be artistic, people label themselves artists when they haven’t got anything artistic to input, any creative vision or message they want to spread, if it’s not the musicians and artists demanding change for the world, then who will? There is a reason for this to be happening, the music industry actively shadows and censors those who want a better world or have messages that don’t align with the status quo. Obviously, people who have different ideas, make others think and aren’t afraid to speak their minds are bad for profits, but the heads of the industry and those who exploit the artists already have enough money. Regardless, I think artists should stand up for the most oppressed and biggest injustices that are happening in the world instead of doing mindless audible content that is comparable to fast food. 

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

It’s very hard to choose since I’m always changing and listening to a lot of different stuff, you could ask me this question every year and I would have a different answer. But in the last 2 years the album that I listened to the most was “Voices” by Wormrot but “Ride The Lightning” by Metallica and “Self Titled” by Slipknot are for sure some of the most influential albums of my life.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CDs, or Downloads?

I really like CDs and own a lot of them, but I mostly listen to music on Streaming like Spotify.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

Not the best in terms of my personal performance but one of the biggest was with my band Crimson Bridge, I’m the drummer, we played at RCA in Lisbon, it was great being on the same stage as so many other great bands played before.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

I would be developing games, as I already am but in the sound design and music sector, I went to university for Video Game development, so I learned everything from Programming to 3D and Game Design.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Barney Greenway of course, the guys from Architects, those would be 6 people but I’m not leaving any man behind from Architects! I also wouldn’t leave Connie Sgarbossa from SeeYouSpaceCowboys out!

What’s next for the band?

Next, I will try to form a band for live shows, and I am working on a few splits and a second Full Length album.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

I usually promote Bandcamp or Spotify, but most of the time it’s one link with all the important stuff.

Like this one: https://linktr.ee/slaughterindustry

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Honestly, I am not familiar with those, they would have to make me a vegan version for me to accurately state my position on the subject.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Big thanks to Ever Metal for the interview, I hope all is well with everyone involved, including the people reading these words. Finally, never stop spreading peace, love and compassion to all beings!

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

Sijjeel – Salvation Within Insanity

Salvation Within Insanity Album Cover Art

Sijjeel – Salvation Within Insanity
Comatose Music
Release Date: 03.06.22
Running Time: 33:18
Review by Dark Juan
7/10

Well, now. In a classic case of first world problems, I have sat down to write a review of Sijjeel’s album and my headphones broke. I have had a flounce about it and been royally mocked by Mrs Dark Juan for moaning about something so unimportant in the grand scheme of things. Talking of unimportant matters…

There was a young effeminate gentleman in his early twenties near Dark Juan Terrace this morning, attempting to pull in his car wing mirror so it doesn’t get knocked off. Said young gentleman (who was a VERY slender body type and looks like he enjoys nutritious meals composed mainly of several liquids) took SIX attempts to do this rather simple task. Granted, he had arms and legs like pipe cleaners, but a monkey one third his size could have done it without any major problem. Honest to Satan, the man was wetter than a bank holiday in Mablethorpe and had ACTUALLY WORKED UP A SWEAT as he went back to his friends and partner, complaining about how hard it was. This got me thinking about victim types, and whether this clearly not very physically strong person would be seen as easy meat by a serial killer or an abuser. How would he be able to fight off someone who was going to do something unspeakable to him if he can’t even fold in a fucking car mirror? Still, he was impeccably attired and seemed happy with his partner and probably has a different set of important values to me. So, I wandered off with Hodgson Biological-Warfare and didn’t trouble myself with worrying about it. Then I went to a farmer’s market in Heckmondwike, which was shit so I came home again, ensconced Mrs Dark Juan upon her large sofa with two thirds of the home’s complement of annoying furry bastards and have stuck the latest offering from Sijjeel on the spinny deck of deth – Sijjeel being a Saudi Arabian/ European death metal band.

Now if you know anything about Saudi Arabia, you’ll also know that it is not a very welcoming place for heavy metal, the hardline Wahhabi sect that the country follows claiming that metal is not Islamic. I’d fucking love it if we ended up with some proper Islamic Metal, where the followers of that august religion bid defiance to their more conservative clerics and make their own music to praise Mohammed (peace be upon him) and Allah.

It’s the same fucking problem with all religions, isn’t it? It’s a fucking man in a dress and a silly hat claiming he has the direct word of some (possibly imaginary) sky being and foisting their belief on many others and making them follow him on pain of death/ eternal damnation/ shame. This is why I do not like religion. Why should I be damned to eternal suffering because I refuse to accept their narrative? I don’t want their fucking pity either. I have ABSOLUTELY ZERO problem with people choosing to follow a religion, or dedicating their lives to a religion. That’s their free will and I will respect their choice, even if I don’t agree. I will not insult their religion either, to their faces. I will in my rantings and when I am not directly speaking to them though. Christianity, Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, yes even Satanism – all creeds that require you to stop using your intelligence, that was supposedly given by god. He gives you the intelligence to think, and according to religion will punish you forever if you don’t think what he wants you to think, according to the adherents of these religions and the men in funny hats who wander around waving censers. Fuck THAT for a game of soldiers. What I do have a problem with is unquestioning slaves to religion (the same applies to politics – the apathy of Brits to what is being done to them is truly staggering to behold) and people who will insist that being of their religion is the only way I (or my good deeds) will have any worth or value.

Those people get a middle finger, a loud and disrespectful “Fuck you” and no more of my time. Dark Juan will embrace decency and respect, but not people who tell me not to swear, or wear a t shirt because it upsets them and their god. Shove your god up your arse, you credulous dickhead…

Sorry. Dark Juan rejected religion many years ago as an unprovable truth.

Sijjeel (I didn’t know what it meant, so I did a bit of research. Here is the best bit of translation and information I could find – The word SIJJEEL is borrowed from Farsi, and is defined in Al-Munjid as حجارة كالطين اليابس. The Saudi Arabian “official” translation of the Qur’an actually uses the expression “burnt clay.” It is not clear whether the reference is to:

– clay that has naturally hardened into stone;

– shards of pottery (which is made of clay and hardened by being baked at extremely high temperatures in special kilns); or

– fire-hot stones (possibly used in ancient warfare).

Some commentators even suggested that the expression is not meant to describe the actual objects, but rather their effect on the victims, who felt as if they were being pelted by fire-hot stones. The affliction may have been a viral skin epidemic, for instance) are the band of Hussain Akbar (guitars and drum programming) and they play a rather beguiling bit of brutal, yet technically complex death metal. 

Opening with “Isolation Behind Unrealism”, the band set out their store in a remarkably uncompromising fashion. There are no fancy intros, or humorous skits, there is just violence. Pure, unadulterated sonic violence. Of immediate note is the influence of Tool, Necrophagist, Meshuggah and other technical bands – there are some beautifully complex passages throughout the record, but I liked the syncopation throughout the opening song but this is a pure death metal album. Particularly impressive is the icy sharp, clear and absolutely brutal production, which allows the bass through the mix with ease, but maintains clarity and a hawklike, predatory sense of purpose. That purpose is to bludgeon you until you are chunky salsa.

However, I think Sijjeel would benefit from a human drummer. You can immediately tell the drums are sequenced and it takes some of the humanity away from the music. The guitar and bass work are absolutely fucking top drawer though, and the guitar’s tone the proper level of death metal meaty. The gut destroying vocals from Floor Van Kuijk are completely incomprehensible, yet supremely aggressive. The whole band hit you in the belly and keep on hitting you until your torso is a gore filled bag leaking from small rents in the skin. Which, frankly, is what death metal is supposed to do to you. “Mental Paralysis” is a listening experience not unlike being trampled by a herd of vildebeest. With an elephant in the middle of them.

I do have problems with the album though. The sequenced drums I have already described. Sijjeel are considerably better than this album gives them credit for. There is too much reliance on warp speed and blastbeats when the band are capable of far greater feats of musicianship and that’s annoying. Death metal can be just as brutal with more inventive arrangements. Sijjeel themselves demonstrate this on the album opener and then seem to fall back into the death metal event horizon of speed and incomprehensible gutturals, leaving the truly interesting bits of the music until the end of songs when they are looking for a way to end them. That’s a shame because I like those bits best.

I’m actually a bit conflicted, because I really like Sijjeel and their sound is immense and there is considerable promise to them, but I can’t help thinking that this record is a bit… lazy. There’s so much more Sijjeel could be doing and they have the capacity to be able to take death metal forward in a unique and powerful way, instead of the hackneyed reliance on speed and palm muted staccato riffing. “Inflection To Thee Smut” is a prime example – a chopped up, dissonant, intricate riff is just stopped after a few bars on the introduction, and doesn’t come back till the middle eight, and then that’s the last we hear of it. To be fair “Inflection” is my favourite song on the album, where complex riffs and time passages come together in interesting ways although there is still too much reliance on speed.

Less velocity, more virtuosity, please.

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System awards Sijjeel 7/10 for a very good, but ultimately unspectacular album that is a gnat’s wing away from greatness.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Isolation Behind Unrealism
02. Inverted Contentment In Salvation
03. The Affliction Of Deteriorating Minds
04. Mental Paralysis
05. Climbing Into The Abyss
06. Departing From Human Nature
07. Indignation Overcame Me
08. Inflection To Thee Smut

LINE-UP:
Floor Van Kuijk – Vocals 
Lukas Kaminski – Bass
Hussain Akbar – Guitar/Drum Programming

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of ‘Dark Juan’ 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.

Harmoniaq – The Forest of Torment

The Forest Of Torment Album Cover Art

Harmoniaq – The Forest of Torment
Self-Released
Release Date: 30/04/22
Running Time: 28:00 
Review by Paul Hutchings 
6/10

Blending a variety of styles, the debut release from Ottawa Quintet Harmoniaq is something of a mixed bag. There’s Thrash, Death, and Black Metal fighting for air alongside more traditional metal styles here, and whilst it works at times, there are distinct sections that leave you scratching your head. 

The release opens with “The Forest of Torment”, a seven-minute blast which combines cookie monster Death Metal vocals of the Corpsegrinder nature with some rather unsavoury screamo-style screeches which don’t add to the delivery. I’d have much preferred if the band had chosen the former style and left it at that, for as a Death Metal delivery, laced with some searing lead guitar work, it stands up well on its own. The decision to drop into the more ethereal Black Metal standards is interesting and generally works okay. There is plenty of heaviness, an underlying groove, and some frantic drumming. 

‘Warmageddon’ follows, a blustering bag of bruising aggression that breaks early for some crisp clean guitar work before descending the depths whilst the solos continue to play. The strangulated delivery that is placed on top of the solos isn’t ideal, distracting from some decent playing. It’s a schizophrenic song that once more isn’t helped by the more feral vocal style.

And it continues. ‘Death Knell’ is a shorter, more straightforward blast of extreme, whilst ‘Calamity Unfolds’ temporarily broods before thundering into a blisteringly fast song that is an explosive beast of a track. It’s as close to pure Death Metal as we get although the unconventional starts and stops make it less orthodox. The track develops with an elongated groove vibe and some more lead work. It’s frantic stuff. 

The finale is ‘The Void’, which starts with an intricate guitar piece before segueing into even more groove-fashioned thrashing. It’s another song that combines numerous styles, incorporating elements of thrash into the mix before almost slowing to a crawl and instrumental section and then climbing once more. I appreciate the variation; it works on several levels although I’m still struggling with the vocal delivery at times.

There are some interesting concepts and styles within this release. It’s certainly of interest and I genuinely like parts of the songs. The abrupt stop-start in parts grated. There is potential here,  and a second release would certainly be on my list for a listen.  

‘A Calamity Unforetold’ Official Visualizer

TRACKLISTING:
01. The Forest of Torment
02. Warmageddon
03. Death Knell
04. A Calamity Unforetold
05. The Void

LINE-UP:
André Dubien – All Vocals
Miguel Marcheterre-Pina – Rhythm/Lead/Clean Guitars
Jean-François Lévesque – Rhythm/Lead/Clean Guitars
Jacob Collins -Drums
Adam Semler – Fretless Bass

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Paul Hutchings 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.

EMQ’s With Ophelia’s Eye

EMQ’s With Ophelia’s Eye

Hello everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Swiss Melodic Death Metal band, Ophelia’s Eye. Huge thanks to them for taking part. 

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

For all who don’t want to read that much, just scroll down 😉

We are Ophelia’s Eye and have influences both from the Melodic Death Metal sound of Gothenburg as well as the early Metalcore era of 2003. This results in Hard but also Melodic Metal. Ophelia’s Eye started out as a Project Penny and changed the name to Red Fire Dragon before our former drummer Marco joined in 2017. At this time the band consisted of him, a guitarist and a bassist. When Marco met his school friend Remo at Greenfield 2017 by chance he instantly knew that he needs Remo in his band as this worked really fine during a band they played together in school. As Remo was quite busy during this time he needed some time, but after one year decided to give it a try, came to a rehearsal and decided to stay. At this point the band started out moving from covering songs to writing own songs.

The guitarist left in the beginning of 2019 but Michel (ex. Sweet Massacre) joined, which was really a lucky case: Michel has placed an ad on Bandbuddy in 2016 that he’s a singer searching for a band. Nothing happened until 2019 Marco answered to his ad. Just at this time Michel has gotten his first child but as it fitted very well, he then joined. The band name once again was changed to the current name Ophelia’s Eye.

In August 2019 Corinne saw an ad from Ophelia’s Eye that they are looking for a guitarist. But since the ad was already from the beginning of 2019 and Corinne only played guitar for just under a year, she did not really believe that this would become something. But she was wrong: The answer from Marco came quick and only a week after Corinne came to a rehearsal and instantly knew that this was the right fit for her.

At this point we had the feeling that we now have the right constellation to start out, recorded demos in our room very quickly, built up our social media presence and organised our very first concert in February 2020 just before Corona measures took place.

But due to different goals we split up with our bassist just two weeks before our first concert and played without a bass player until we’ve found Sandro who joined in August 2020 and was really a lucky strike. In the beginning of December 2021 we and Marco decided to go our separate ways due to different ideas about the future cooperation. At this point the search of a new drummer began which we’ve luckily found very quickly with Stefan in mid of January.

How did you come up with your band name?

Ophelia’s Eye is based on Olimpia’s Eyes from the novel “The Sandman” by E.T.A. Hofmann. Olimpia for us is a characterization for the goal we want to achieve with our music. In the course of the book, Nathaniel’s perception of Olimpia changes as he observes her through a pocket lens in her room: “But as he looked sharper and sharper through the glass, it was as if moist moonbeams were rising in Olimpia’s eyes. It seemed as if only now the sight was ignited; more and more vividly and vividly the glances flamed.”

And toward the end of the story, Nathanel is enchanted by Olimpia. He calls her “heavenly-beautiful,” admires her every day, and is desperate and driven by longing. We, too, want to “inflame” the audience, bring them to life and cast a spell over them. Through our songs the listeners should also lose the connection to reality – at least for a while.

Where are you from and what is the Metal & Rock scene like there?

All of us live in Cantons near to our rehearsal room which is in the Canton Solothurn. Normally when thinking of Rock and Metal mostly countries such as Scandinavia or the USA come to mind, but for sure not Switzerland even though bands such as Gotthard, Eluveitie, Messiah or Celtic Frost had played a part in the early metal history.

But if you dig a little deeper you will find a lot of great underground bands which work hard, a sworn-in metal community, one of the venues considered the best by international metal bands the “Z7” as well as the great Greenfield Festival.

There is a wide variety of great Metal bands from different sub-genres out there in Switzerland, such as “I, Delusionist” (Deathcore, Djent), “Heathen Heretic” (Thrash Metal), Sickret (Nu / Alternativ Metal, Hardcore), Soulline (Melodic Death Metal) or Hunted Like Thieves (Hardcore, Melodic Hardcore, Punk).

If you’re interested in discovering some Swiss Underground Bands, check out Tamselbärchen’s Lexicon: https://tamselbaerchen.ch/swiss-bands-lexicon/ 

What is your latest release?

Our debut album “Hopeless World”, which we just released on April 15th, 2022.

Who have been your greatest influences?

For every one of us, the inspiration comes from another band. Michel (vocals) is mostly influenced by old-school Hardcore since he grew up with this, Remo (lead guitar) has more melodic influences such as Arch Enemy, Stefan (drums) is especially inspired by Lamb of God, Corinne (rhythm guitar) loves rhythmic bands such as Meshugga or Goijra even if this not exactly influences our songs and Sandro (bass) loves complex and experimental stuff such as Ice Nine Kills.

As you can see, we all have quite a different taste in Metal which surely influences our song writing on an unconscious basis and as we develop, probably you will be able to hear a bit more of those different inspirations out of our songs. In terms of song structure, riffs, melodies and drive we would say our main influences are As I Lay Dying, Lamb of God, Killswitch Engage and a bit of Arch Enemy and Amon Amarth since those bands are like a common ground in our band.

Regarding the sound production Parkway Drive, In Flames and Periphery are our role models. Our lyrics are inspired by things each of us experiences in our lives.

What first got you into music?

Michel often watched the music channel on MTV which motivated him to stand on stages as well someday and for all others it mostly were their parents. Remo, Corinne and Sandro were able to try out different instruments on a day at their then (different) music schools, with Remo choosing guitar directly, Corinne the oboe and Sandro the tuba.

Stefan has a mum who was a professional musician and showed him how to practice correctly but also gave good advice and feedback and inspired him early.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

Michel: Attila
Remo: Parkway Drive
Corinne: So many, but I’d go along with Remo on Parkway Drive as well if I need to choose, since they managed to manage all by themselves until where they are and are quite inspirational therefore!
Sandro: Ice Nine Kills
Stefan: Orbit Culture

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Probably a typical answer for all metal bands: Wacken – I think this is something you just need to experience on stage. But apart from that we would love to play at our favourite festivals Greenfield (Switzerland) and Summerbreeze (Germany)

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

So far, we haven’t received any gifts at all. We only were really (positively) astonished when a fan of ours, who is a friend of our former drummer Marco, had tattooed our band name on his whole calf when we just released our first Single.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

You are an incredible fan base and we highly value your loyalty and great support all along the way, so a big thank you to all! You have helped us so much with all your sharing and your donations and only because of you it is possible to further produce at this point. And since concerts are finally possible again, we would love to see you back there in front of our stage or for a beer at our merchandise booth!

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

Michel: Chester Bennington
Remo & Sandro: Lemmy Kilmister
Corinne: Jimi Hendrix
Stefan: Joey Jordison

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

Actually, we enjoy so many things. For us one of the greatest thing is to have like a second family in which all are there for each other no matter what happens, you can celebrate together, you also have fights sometimes but always find a solution and can speak openly. But of course also the shared passion for music and to be able to share it with other people, getting to know a lot of different people and making experiences you would probably never do otherwise.

When we would hate something, we probably would stop being in a band, but of course it is sometimes exhausting and nerve-racking how much time and money you need as a band to be able to produce, playing shows, advertise and so on. But this is something you need to know before starting out and also define as a band what goal you want to reach and how much you want to contribute to that regarding time and money.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

We think the most difficult thing nowadays is to really earn some money with music. Streaming platforms of course help building a bigger audience, but it just does not really help the band finance wise, so all the revenue needs to come from live concerts, merch and maybe physical CD’s or Vinyl. And when there is a crisis like the one, we are in right now, this is also a revenue stream that gets lost on the band.

So if we could change anything it would be more opportunities for cultural funding, which unfortunately when it exists, in many cases tends to be in the genres of Pop, Rock, etc. and also to create an awareness again of what music is actually worth. But to be honest, with this number of bands it is completely understandable that not every band can get funding and that fans cannot spend too much money on so many bands.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Michel: “Chocolate Starfish” from Limp Bizkit
Remo: “I Am Above” from In Flames, because it simply contains awesome guitar riffs.
Corinne: “Trauma” from I Prevail since this is an album I can listen up and down.
Sandro: “The Silver Scream” from Ice Nine Kills because it’s versatile and currently one of my favourite bands.
Stefan: “VII: Sturm und Drang” from Lamb of God

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

Definitely Vinyl regarding the quality and also the feeling you get when you hold it in your hands.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

One of our favourite gigs so far was the one on September 4th, 2021 at the Met-Bar in Lenzburg – the hometown of Corinne. First, we were all so happy to play live again, second we had an amazing audience which sung along and head-banged all their way through every song and last, there was an amazing crew at Met-Bar – everything from sound, lightening to catering was just perfect. All those great things reflected in our performance of course which is why we think it was the best one.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

We all love cooking and also cook for each other at each rehearsal in turns, spending time in nature (some of us by foot, downhill bike or motorbike) or caring for our families (some with kids or cats).

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Michel: My band mates and Chris Fronzak.
Remo: James Hetfield, Kirk Hammett, Jeff Ling, Winston McCall, Jeff Loomis.
Corinne: Winston McCall, Kirk Hammett, Alissa White-Gluz, Tommy Johansson and my husband.
Sandro: My band mates and someone important from the music business 😉
Stefan: Chris Adler, Ali Richardson, Danny Carey, Mario Duplantier, Themis Tolis.

What’s next for the band?

Finally we are able to hit the stages again and quite some shows are planned so we at the moment focus on delivering great shows through enhancing our stage performance skills and show concepts, trying to get gigs outside Switzerland and writing new songs so we can release another album in 2023.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

Website: https://www.opheliaseyeband.com/ 
Bandcamp: https://opheliaseye.bandcamp.com/ 
SoundCloud: https://soundcloud.com/user-833626332 
Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/artist/3hL6CM4UlNgPOtYttvDLPA 
Deezer: https://www.deezer.com/de/artist/135618262 
Apple Music: https://music.apple.com/ch/artist/ophelias-eye/1571416590 
Amazon Music: https://music.amazon.de/artists/B096WQ9245/ophelia’s-eyetag=smarturl-de-21 
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/OpheliasEye 
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ophelias_eye/ 
TikTok: https://www.tiktok.com/@opheliaseyeband
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/OpheliasEyeBand 
ReverbNation: https://www.reverbnation.com/opheliaseye# 

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Ha ha – difficult. In Switzerland a biscuit normally is something which is rather dry and hard whereas a cake is something moister and softer but a biscuit in Switzerland is small and a cake big. From the texture we would definitely say cake but from the size it would be a biscuit.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Thank you for having us! To the readers: Thank you for your interest and reading all your way through this! If you like our sound we of course would much appreciate if you share it and support us through buying our music & merch through our website or bandcamp.

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

EMQ’s with Threnody

EMQ’s with Threnody

Hi everyone. Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Pennsylvania USA Death Metal band, Threnody. Huge thanks to guitarist, Sean Trumbo, for taking part. 

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

My name is Sean Trumbo and I am one of the guitarists in the band Threnody. Our band was founded in 1989 by Rich, Dave, Todd and I. We then recruited Bill to round out the “classic” line up. We then started writing Speed Metal / Thrash songs but soon decided to become a Death Metal band. Threnody was an active band from 1989-1992 and then was defunct until our other guitarist Bill decided to pull a Blues Brothers and get the band back together for a 30th anniversary album right before the pandemic hit.

How did you come up with your band name?

I was looking through a dictionary and thesaurus trying to find a name for the band in morning homeroom in High School. We were looking for something scary or creepy so I was looking up death / funeral-type words and I found “funeral dirge” or threnody and the name stuck.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

We are from the U.S.A. and the band originated in the Reading, Pennsylvania area. I couldn’t tell you what the current music scene is like now since I’ve been out of the loop for so long but back in our heyday there was a decent Metal / Hardcore scene in the area.

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

Our newest release is “Rid of Flesh” which is a full album consisting of a mix of songs from our first demo “Internal Infestation” and our unreleased second demo “Rid of Flesh/Maggot Feast.”

Who have been your greatest influences?

Speaking for myself (Sean), my greatest musical influences have been Metallica, Slayer, Death, Carcass, and Cannibal Corpse with Elton John being one of my earliest music idols. The band is heavily influenced by the same bands plus Napalm Death with a sprinkling of early Hardcore.

What first got you into music?

My Mom took me to see Elton John in 1976 when I was just 3 years old. I was so young but I still remember being overwhelmed by the sights and sounds. She also used to blast music on the stereo while cleaning the house and I would play the Atari 2600 and just listen to all the rock acts that were big at the time. You could say it was a mix of who and what got me into music.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

My bandmates. I hadn’t played in years before this project and the enjoyment I have gotten from playing with these guys again is incredible.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Either Hellfest or Wacken Open Air Festival. To play and see that many Metal bands would be awesome.

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

I’ve never received a gift from a fan but who knows what the future brings.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Thank you for enjoying our music and making us feel young again.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

John Lennon

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

I enjoy making music that I would listen to and seeing others liking it as well. I hate that I waited 30 years to understand the first question.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

I think the fact that anyone can create music and put it there for everyone to hear without having to go through major labels is a great thing. I’m not immersed fully in the industry so it’s hard to say what I would change.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

A 4-way tie between “Master of Puppets” by Metallica, “Symphonies of Sickness” by Carcass, “Captain Fantastic and the Brown Dirt Cowboy” by Elton John and “Abbey Road” by The Beatles.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

I listen to almost everything digitally nowadays. I usually try to have the songs in my library be lossless so there is no loss from compression.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

Honestly, it was a gig in our friend’s basement in winter 1990 playing with our friends in the band Torment. Good times.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

My day job, which Quality Control for a telecommunication company. Pretty exciting stuff.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Elton John, Steve Martin, John Lennon, James Hetfield, and Carl Sagan.

What’s next for the band?

Hopefully recording some more music and possibly playing some shows.

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

http://m.facebook.com/Threnody1991/
https://www.instagram.com/threnody_us_grindgore
https://twitter.com/Threnody1991
https://threnody1991.bandcamp.com/album/rid-of-flesh

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

I’ve never had one but I would love to try one and they look delicious! 

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Thank you for your time and thank you to anyone who is listening to our album and supporting us.

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

EMQ’s with The Chapter

EMQ’s with The Chapter

Hi everyone. Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Portuguese Doom/Death/Gothic Metal band, The Chapter. Huge thanks to their Guitarist, Pedro Almeida, for taking part. 

What is your name, what do you play, and can you tell us a little bit about the history of the band?

Hello Ever Metal! My name is Pedro Almeida and I play guitar at The Chapter. 

So, the band started early 2004 by the hand of Pedro Antunes (drummer), who started to look for musicians to start a project. The band’s first line-up (Pedro Antunes, Gonçalo Carvalho, João Gomes, Pedro Almeida, Vasco Macau) had different origins inside the Metal scene from the 80’s, 90’s and early 2000’s. In 2006, the band released the first studio record, intitled “Into the Abyss” (EP) and around 2009 it followed a hiatus of several years. The band returned into the studio in 2015 with a new line-up, Pedro Rodrigues replaced Gonçalo Carvalho on vocals and Eurico Mealha replaced Vasco Macau on the bass. In 2017, the band released the full-length album intitled “Angels & Demons”. By the end of 2018, Tiago Oliveira replaced Pedro Rodrigues as vocalist. Currently the band is promoting the upcoming album entitled “Delusion of Consciousness”, to be released on April 22. So, stay tuned and don’t miss anything 🙂 

How did you come up with your band name?

The band’s name didn’t come out quickly. It went through a kind of maturation process, several months I would say 🙂 Then I remember a friend very close to Vasco Macau, that one night come out with the name The Chapter. Other guys in the band could tell you another story, but I believe mine is closest to the truth.

What Country/Region are you from and what is the Metal/Rock scene like there?

The Chapter are from Lisbon area (Portugal) and currently the Metal / Rock scene is strong. Nowadays there are several Metal venues with Portuguese bands of great quality from different Metal / Rock genres. International bands also have Portugal on their radar, because the Portuguese audience is amazing. Since the pandemic started, some activities had to stop but we hope that everything comes to a point where all we can enjoy more concerts. 

What is your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video)

Our latest release is a video of the song taken from our upcoming album. Check out our YouTube page (https://www.youtube.com/c/TheChapterBand). The song is called ‘Delusion of Consciousness’ from the upcoming album with the same name.  

Who have been your greatest influences?

As a band nowadays, certainly bands like Opeth, Katatonia, Swallow The Sun and Gojira.

What first got you into music?

Personally speaking. I was teenager, living in the northern suburbs of Lisbon and it’s when I remembered hearing bands like Guns N’ Roses, Bon Jovi, Nirvana, all bands followed by my closest friends at the time.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician who would it be?

This one is hard to answer, so many people to mention here and all with different styles. All of them contributed in different ways to the Metal scene as we know today.

If you could play any festival in the world, which would you choose and why?

Resurrection Fest. No reason in particular. It’s a new fest (it has only a few editions) but it’s usually a 4 / 5 days festival covering both mainstream and more underground bands, which is awesome. 

What’s the weirdest gift you have ever received from a fan?

So far, no weird gifts.  

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be?

Our fans are people that know our music, our songs and our lyrics. They know what we would like to achieve as a band. It’s all about playing music with intensity, atmosphere and heavy! So, for our fans, we would say to stay with us on this journey because they are the source of all this energy that the band is carrying stage after stage, with sweat and sacrifices! And spread the band because the more we are, more powerful it will be.

If you could bring one rock star back from the dead, who would it be?

It’s unfair to mention one person only! Sorry guys. Each one in their own style, contributed a lot to the Metal / Rock scene.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate?

As a musician I would say that the process to compose and play live it’s the funniest things I like. I hate to pay the bill… yes… That’s why we need you to grow up as a band quickly to spend more time composing new music for you. 

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be?

The royalties attributed to the artists by labels and streaming platforms. 

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

The question is a little bit personal. I must mention the Black Album by Metallica because in fact it was the first Metal album presented by a friend of mine and from there, I started to play guitar until nowadays.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CD’s or Downloads?

Cassettes.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date?

We have mention the last one. Assembleia do Metal, a Portuguese Metal Fest from Viseu county in Portugal. We played at Assembleia do Metal Fest last December and it was awesome.   

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing?

All the musicians from The Chapter, they have professional careers outside music industry. But our passion keeps us involved and motivated to continue working on new music, in anticipation that one day the band will be able to achieve other level inside music industry. 

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

All five from The Chapter because we deserve it.

What’s next for the band?

Currently we are promoting our upcoming album entitled “Delusion of Consciousness” to be released very soon, on April 22nd. So, stay tuned. 

What Social Media/Website links do you use to get your music out to people?

Currently the band has official accounts at Facebook, Instagram, YouTube and Bandcamp. 

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Come on guys! Give us a stage, with a plenty of watts and drinks and we will do the rest 🙂 That’s all we know.

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

We would like to thank you to Ever Metal for the opportunity to share the band and our music. 

To EVERYONE, please follow us and support us on the following links:
Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/Thechaptermusic
Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/thechapterband
YouTube – https://www.youtube.com/c/TheChapterBand
Bandcamp – https://thechapterband.bandcamp.com/


Our upcoming album entitled “Delusion of Consciousness” is available for pre-order at Bandcamp, so don’t miss that and start now your pre-order. 

Cheers!!!

The Chapter Band Photo

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

ALLEGAEON – Live at the Rickshaw Theatre, Vancouver – 16/03/22

ALLEGAEON – Live at the Rickshaw Theatre, Vancouver
16/03/22
Photos by Arturs Feists

Live performance of the Technical Melodic Death Metal band ALLEGAEON from Colorado, USA, at the Rickshaw Theatre Vancouver BC, Canada, on March 16, 2022.

Disclaimer: This photo album is solely the property of Arturs Feists. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of these images, unless you have the strict permission of said party. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Solstice – To Dust

To Dust Album Cover Art

Solstice – To Dust
SPV
Release Date: 08/04/22
Running Time: 41:00
Review by Paul Hutchings 
8/10

Having been part of the initial wave of Death Metal that surged through Florida, Solstice released two now revered albums in the first half of the 90’s: “Solstice” and “Pray”. A combination of Death and Thrash Metal, both albums carved a niche in the pantheons of Death Metal for eternity. Having gone their separate ways (founders Rob Barrett and Alex Marquez having already left to form Malevolent Creation after Solstice), it was something of a surprise when in 2009 a new, reformed line-up that included drummer Brian Harris (Foul Stench, later had a stint in Firewind and who is in print on YouTube comments saying that he was on this album as a hired gun – his performance is stellar, regardless), alongside guitarist / vocalist Christian Rudes, guitarist Dennis Munoz and bassist Garret Scott.

The Result was “To Dust”, 41 minutes of blisteringly heavy Death Metal that contains bruiser after bruiser with a cover of Cynic’s ‘Extremes’ included for good measure. Unrelenting from the opening bars of ‘Black’ through to the concluding ‘The Whisper’, this is an album for connoisseurs and newcomers to the band alike. The riffs are brutal, and memorable, the vocals of Rudes demonic and yet enunciated to a level that is distinguishable whilst the engine room of Scott and Harris is tighter than a Yorkshireman at the bar. 

The more you listen to “To Dust” the more you appreciate the driving bass that Scott administers throughout. Diving deep into the body, sending shock waves rippling through the listener with the guttural vocals corrupting the vital organs, sending them into a state of paralysis. There are time changes a plenty, sitting comfortably with more straightforward assaults that ripple through the brain with relentless energy. Even ‘The Whisper’, which one might think would bring a calmer conclusion to the album denies you that, instead bringing a final onslaught that spares nothing.

With most tracks coming in between three and four minutes, there is ample opportunity to get stuck in. Check out the ferocity of ‘Swarm’, with its pulsing vitality, punishing riffing and overall face melting approach. ‘Honest Human Emotion’ throws forward some of the best soloing on the album, the twin guitars blisteringly good in harmony as they race across the pummelling below. 

Solstice are one of the most influential bands in the Floridian Death Metal scene and ‘To Dust’ sits amongst the classics. If you’ve never heard this, then just ensure you are sitting securely, for once play is pressed, you’ll be in for hell of a ride. 

TRACKLISTING:
01. Black 
02. To Dust
03. Honest Human Emotion
04. Sovereignty
05. Swarm
06. Moment of Clarity
07. Passionless
08. Extremes
09. Impressive Technology
10. The Whisper

LINE-UP:
Christian Rudes – Vocals, Guitar 
Dennis Munoz – Guitar 
Garret Scott – Bass 
Brian Harris – Drums

LINKS:


 Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Paul Hutchings 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.

EMQ’s With WRATH OF MAN – M2TM EDITION

Wrath Of Man Logo

EMQ’s With WRATH OF MAN – M2TM EDITION

Hi everyone! Welcome to another special M2TM edition of our EMQs interview. This one is with Preston UK-based Thrash/ Death Metal band, Wrath Of Man. Huge thanks to their guitarist, Darren, for taking part.

What’s your name, what instrument do you play, and can you tell us a little about the history of the band? 

Darren, I play guitar. The band was formed from a collaboration between Darius our drummer and I for a YouTube video. We liked how we worked so thought we would build on it and form the band. Tony joined soon after but it took a while to find the right vocalist. Then Mike from All Consumed asked to join.

What genre of Metal do you play? 

I would say it’s a cross between Thrash and Death.

How did you come up with your band name? 

I can’t really remember where Wrath of Man came from. We all put our ideas in a list and voted using a point system, this narrowed it down to 3 and we voted again. It was definitely before the film came out, ha ha!

Where are you based and what is the Metal / Rock scene like there? 

We are from Preston in Lancashire. There is a scene and most are passionate about their metal. It’s not a massive scene but there are some great underground bands hailing from our area.

What’s your latest release? (Album, EP, Single, Video) 

We’ve just released our debut album “The Abstract Grotesque” of which we are very proud of.

Who have been your greatest influences?

As a kid I wanted to play bass and watching Cliff Burton was what made pick up an instrument. As a rhythm guitarist though there’s so many, ha ha!

What first got you into music?

I’ve always been into music and rock thanks to my dad and growing up to him playing Whitesnake, Rainbow Fleetwood Mac etc. I was 13 when I really started finding my own way and listening to different bands and heavier music.

If you could collaborate with a current band or musician, who would it be? 

It would be cool to jam with Eric Peterson from Testament.

What does Bloodstock Festival represent to you?

For me Bloodstock is a great chance to meet up with friends from around the country you don’t get to see often and drink beer. There’s always new bands that you discover either at the New Blood stage, Jager stage. All round great fun and great atmosphere.

Have you been to Bloodstock, and if so, what’s your favourite memory from the festival? 

I’ve been to every Bloodstock since 2014. So many memories to choose from. It’s tough. Acid Reign in the Sophie tent was awesome.

What are you going to bring to M2TM that you think will earn you a place on the New Blood Stage? 

Although we are a relatively new band on the live scene, we have a wealth of experience and have always brought an energetic in your face show. There’s always someone’s head banging.

If you had one message for your fans, what would it be? 

Without fans and music lovers there would be no bands, no live shows and this community wouldn’t exist. Respect each other and the music.

What do you enjoy the most about being a musician? And what do you hate? 

I love playing shows and I actually don’t mind recording, ha ha! Unfortunately there’s more to being in a band than just playing, there’s always lots to organise which can get frustrating but that’s the way it is.

If you could change one thing about the music industry, what would it be? 

Ha I would have to say it’s not for one person to change anything, music is a collective.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums? 

Anthrax “Among The Living”.

What’s best? Vinyl, Cassettes, CDs, or Downloads? 

For nostalgia vinyl, for practicality downloads.

What’s the best gig that you have played to date? 

We’ve only played a handful of shows thanks to Covid, but without a doubt it would have to be supporting Acid Reign.

If you weren’t a musician, what else would you be doing? 

No idea, ha ha!

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party? 

Ha ha with my social anxieties I’d rather not. If I was tied to a chair however… Ozzy, Chuck Billy, Billy Connelly, Sheldon Cooper and Stevie Nicks.

What’s next for the band? 

We have some shows booked starting with Pentre fest as it happens. Also carry on promoting the new album. If I haven’t already mentioned it “The Abstract Grotesque” out now LOL.

Where can people find you online? Drop us your links below:

https://wrathofman.bandcamp.com/
https://www.facebook.com/wrathofman/

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit? 

Does it matter? They taste awesome!

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?

No, thanks!

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

Kimaera – Imperivm

Imperivm Album Cover Art

Kimaera – Imperivm
Self Released
Release Date: 15/03/22
Running Time: 43:31
Review by Rory Bentley
9/10

So Symphonic Metal, we meet again! What have you got for me this time? Some warbling about forest spirits? A Hans Zimmer jerk-off session with some chuggy guitars underneath? A song that’s longer than most of the Hardcore albums I review? Oh! A Lebanese Death Metal take on the Roman Empire you say? Consider me all over that shit!

Kimaera immediately distinguish themselves from the orchestral riff raff by bringing a lilting Middle Eastern tone to every song, utilising traditional Lebanese instruments and employing evocative melismatic singing. This would be engaging by itself, but when you add brutal Extreme Metal virtuosity to the equation with monstrous guttural vocals you’ve got yourself a winning formula.

The band have an excellent knack for building songs that showcase variety and technical prowess without becoming so overblown that the swelling orchestral moments lose impact through monotonous repetition. ‘De Amare et Bellvm’ condenses an album’s worth of ideas into one opening song and sets the tone perfectly for the world they have built with savage vocals, lush orchestration and mind-blowing blast beats all taking centre stage at various points to form a dense but rewarding journey that pulls you into the world of Roman occupied Lebanon.

After having to digest a lot in that opening cut, ‘The Die is Cast’ kicks in with a low-slung groove that brings you to more familiar Metal territory and gives your frazzled brain time to process what you’ve just been hit with. Once again, it is full of gorgeous modal melodies and ethnic singing with almost every new phrase providing a memorable hook. The distorted vocals manage to be unrelentingly savage while being delivered with perfect diction that allows every lyric to be heard clearly, enhancing the storytelling aspect of “Imperivm”.

This heavy focus on Caesar and the gang (that’s what I call the Romans because I’m a dumb ass that didn’t pay enough attention during history class) is brought to the forefront in ‘The Ides of March’ which sounds like the most brutal elements of Opeth colliding with the bombast of Fleshgod Apocalypse, as it tells the story of the Emperor’s terrifying power and subsequent downfall. Metal and history lessons are common bedfellows, but rarely have they been combined to such brutal effect without sounding like a Wikipedia entry (looking at you Iron Maiden). The fact that Roman occupation is ingrained in the history and culture of the band’s home country adds a legitimacy to the execution of the concept that few other bands would be capable of pulling off without coming across as a bit Spinal Tap (looking at you AGAIN Iron Maiden).

By the time we get to the epic closer to the album proper ‘Capvt Mvndi’, the song’s extended runtime feels earned, as nothing on the album outstays its welcome to the point that this may be the finest composition on the record. One big bugbear I have of Symphonic Metal albums in general is that they tend to get flabby towards the end, dulling the emotional weight of compositions by having too many songs that need serious trimming or omission. There’s no such issue here as everything has a purpose and fits together as a cohesive body of work.

After the story section of the album is over, we get a cover of the popular Lebanese song ‘Ya Beirut’ featuring the dulcet guest vocals of Cheryl Khayrallah who weaves elegantly through a joyful instrumental tribute to Kaimaera’s home city. The Metal is present but dialled back, allowing a multitude of Middle Eastern instruments to pull you into the blazing sun and city streets one last time. I will warn you the chorus is a real earworm and it’s been spinning round my brain on a loop for a week now to the point where I’m starting to worry it will never go away, but nonetheless it’s a suitably leftfield closer to an album dripping with its own idiosyncratic style.

As I was about to delve into this wonderful band’s back catalogue, I came across the tragic news that vocalist and guitarist J.P. Haddad had tragically passed away prior to the release of the album. Of course, I’d like to offer my condolences to the rest of the band and J.P.’s friends and family, but I hope they can draw significant comfort from the fact that he has spearheaded a truly fantastic record that is everything that is great about Metal in 2022. This has been one of my favourite discoveries since I started reviewing for Ever Metal and I implore you to dive headfirst into this exhilarating tale of the ancient world.

‘The Ides Of March’ – Official video

TRACKLISTING:
01. De Amare et Bellvm
02. The Die is Cast
03. VVV
04. The Ides of March
05. Imperator
06. Vi Divinia
07. Capvt Mvndi
08. Ya Beirut

LINE-UP:
JP Haddad – Vocals / Guitars
Charbel Abboud – Keyboards
Pierre Najm – Lead Guitars
Patrick Estephan – Drums
Richard Basile – Bass Guitar

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Rory Bentley 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.