Moonscape – The Continuum Synergy

The Continuum Synergy Album Cover Art

Moonscape – The Continuum Synergy
Self-Released
Release Date: 20/01/23
Running Time: 54:13
Review by Simon Black
7/10

Håvard Lunde is one of those people who would have really annoyed the long-gone teenage version of me, by being one of those infuriating people who can seemingly play absolutely any instrument you care to mention with a proficiency beyond most. I mean OK, I’m sure that a kitchen sink is not included as an instrument on this record, but if it was, he would most certainly be playing it, and playing it like he was bloody Mozart too. Fortunately for this highly talented Norwegian virtuoso, I love stuff like this…

This is the third full length release under the Moonscape moniker and follows on in the same deeply Progressive Metal vein as its two predecessors, taking the Metal Opera route of multiple voices as characters from the story (this time a post-apocalyptic futuristic piece). Although Lunde remains the principal songwriter and player, he does have an army of guest contributors this time round, with no less than ten vocal contributors creating a choir and another eight guest instrumentalists, which gives this a way more orchestral and grandiose feeling than some previous work under the Moonscape banner.

Surprisingly, given that most of the seven songs on here are quite meaty in run times, with three over the ten-minute mark, the piece flows as a whole remarkably well. Even within this genre that exposition and length is usually reserved for the traditional epic album closer, so peppering them throughout is a brave move, but it works because the pace of everything balances remarkably well. These lengthy pieces have distinct movements and that really helps with that flow, as having distinct constituent parts means that things don’t get time to feel over-wrought or forced.

But more importantly, this all feels very accessible. Too much in this genre is for the benefit of the artist, who in disappearing down their technical rabbit holes forget that it needs to be accessible to the more casual listener, but Lunde really gets this. Consequently, although that depth is there for repeated listeners to be rewarded with, it’s also accessible enough for those who might not through its use of good old fashioned catchy melody lines, head tapping riffage and a well-produced envelope. 

The only negative for me is that this feels like it needs the input of a strong front of house singer to at least share some of the vocal duties. Although Lunde has a good clean voice and has some good supporting artists adding layers in there, there are elements of performance and delivery that always stand out more when someone who spends the bulk of their time trying to whip up enthusiasm from a cold audience without an instrument to focus on can bring. Add that little bit of charismatic showmanship to proceedings, and this will be unstoppable when combined with Lunde’s musical and song writing powers, which quite frankly are astounding.

‘If Heaven Knows My Name’ Official Lyric Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Galileo’s Quest 
02. Rude Awakening
03. A Rendezvous In Time?
04. Elegy Of Lost Souls
05. If Heaven Knows My Name
06. A Visionary’s Fate
07. Beyond The Periphery

LINE-UP:

Håvard Lunde – Bass, Guitars, Keyboards, Vocals

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Simon Black 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 Chaos Eternal

Chaos Eternal Logo

EMQ’s With Chaos Eternal

Hi Everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Swedish Melodic Death Metal band, Chaos Eternal. Huge thanks to their Guitarist, Johan Ahlqvist, 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 Johan Ahlqvist, I play Guitar, bass and I sing. The band started 2014 when I decided to start a one-man band to explore music from different perspectives. Released four EP’s that year on Spotify and had a break due to mental health and some other projects. Then 2020 I released the self-titled album. I was in a real shitty place then and it shows in both the heavy music and dark lyrics. Since then, I have released a whole bunch of things.

How did you come up with your band name?

I have always had a deep connection with chaos. My life has been chaotic from the start and will probably be so until the abrupt end of it. So, Chaos Eternal represents that but also the fact that the band won’t stay in a single genre.

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

I’m from Sweden and we have a very much alive Metal / Rock scene here. You may have heard of some local bands such as Ghost, The Halo Effect, In Flames, Opeth, Amon Amarth, Meshuggah and so on.

What is your latest release?

The latest releases are “The Journey Pt. 1: Through The Maze” and “The Journey Pt. 2: Higher And Higher”. Both can be found on Spotify and many other platforms!

Who have been your greatest influences?

Devin Townsend, Ace Frehley, Mark Morton, Willie Adler, Mårten Hagström and Fredrik Thordendal

What first got you into music?

I was lucky enough that my mother was friends with the girlfriend of Klas Bohlin (Svarta Sanningar, Beseech, ex Fantastic people, ex Depressive Art) and he offered to teach me the guitar. I said yes immediately and off I went! That was at age twelve. Before that I had gotten into some heavier music and he showed me a whole bunch of more music and I raided the library of their CDs with the most-evil covers.

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

I would love to collaborate with either Devin Townsend or Svarta Sanningar. To name one extremely unlikely and one that could actually happen, with some luck and offerings to the dark gods.

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

Wacken would be cool! Seems like a really cool place to be!

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

I got a handwritten / painted letter with the words “I love you, I want to kill you” written over and over. I can’t remember what was painted around all that anymore. I was kind of psyched to have a stalker.

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

Discover what you want and set out to get it! If you fail that’s fine, in the end nothing really matters. But since we are here, we should do things that makes us feel good, as long as those things do not encroach on another’s being in a negative way.

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

I would love to hang with Dimebag Darrell!

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

I couldn’t live without my creative output. It is what makes me stay somewhat sane. If there is something I hate about it, it’s the fact that it is so damn expensive and really tough to reach an audience.

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

I want the physical releases to be as popular as they were at their height. It would make it a lot easier to make a living from music.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Right now, I am all in on “Devin Townsend – Lightwork”.

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

All of the above! I own all of them. It depends on what it is and which situation it is.

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

I have only played live once when I was 15 at my school. I had a broken leg and sat in the back of the “venue” thinking we wouldn’t play since I was injured and we had rehearsed one time. But I was called to the stage, we had no drummer so one was picked from the audience and we proceeded to perform a Hardcore / Metal cover of Nirvana – Something in the way and it went well actually!

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

I would pursue being a writer since I need creative output. I am writing a novel right now based on the concept of one of Chaos Eternals first Eps, The Donut King. I am quite a bit in on that project, but it’s been on pause for a while. I need some focus and feel that I can take some time of the music side of things.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Erik Danielsson (Watain), Devin Townsend, Dave Grohl (ex-Nirvana, Foo Fighters), Necrobutcher (Mayhem) and Ihsahn (Emperor and solo).

What’s next for the band?

Right now, I am working on finishing the last two albums of the The Journey concept suite. Those will release next year in April / May.

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

www.facebook.com/chaosEternalBand/ 
www.chaoseternalswe.bandcamp.com/ 
www.youtube.com/@chaoseternal 

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

I don’t think I tried one! But it looks like a thick biscuit!

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

Thanks for the opportunity! Check out the new albums on Spotify and if you like them there is a whole bunch of stuff on my Bandcamp page!

Disclaimer: This interview is solely the property of 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 Born Divided

Born Divided Logo

EMQ’s With Born Divided

Hi everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Canadian Melodic Death Metallers, Born Divided. Huge thanks to their Bassist, Tommy Demers, 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 Tommy Demers and I play bass in Born Divided. I’m one of the band’s main songwriters. We are a melodic Death Metal band that tries to touch as many Metal styles as possible in each of the songs. Born Divided is composed of former members of Blinded By Faith, Kalter, and Moonlyght. We incorporate vocal cleans and growls into fast, melodic music. Then it becomes calm and progressive in order to culminate in a final and Epic Climax.

How did you come up with your band name?

We had “Divided” in mind because of the division we saw between human beings becoming more and more pervasive. During a meeting for the research of the name, I proposed Born Divided which was in connection with the division which often comes from the cradle. We all liked it and we adopted this group name for our band.

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

We come from Quebec City in Canada and the Metal scene here is very much alive. Our province has several bands that succeeded here like; Despised Icon, Kataklysm, Cryptopsy, Get the Shot and many others. There are several local shows and international shows which attract many spectators. The scene is alive and strong in Quebec.

What is your latest release?

Our latest release is our first album called “Impending Doom” which worked over several years. We recorded in our guitarist Fred Bedard’s studio and he also did the mixing and mastering. Maxim brought a lot to the vocal level with his clean vocals, his growls, and his overall versatile singer. Born Divided is his first band and we are very happy to count him among our ranks as a frontman. The album is composed of 7 tracks and has a duration of 44 minutes.

Who have been your greatest influences?

My biggest influence is undoubtedly Iron Maiden because it was the band that really helped me progress the most musically during my childhood. But today, Born Divided is mostly influenced by bands such as Symphony X, Opeth, Dimmu Borgir, Haken and many others.

What first got you into music?

My grandfather and my father were musicians and they made me visit music for the first time when I was very young. My father taught me the basics of drums and my mother gave me piano lessons. So, my family made me dive into the world of music at a very young age and Iron Maiden at the age of 10 was my baptism of Heavy Metal and the beginning of an endless journey in Metal music.

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

I would really like to collaborate with Devin Townsend because he has a sense of composition like few artists have. He doesn’t put up any barriers when he composes and always tries to push the limits of Metal, alternating with aggressiveness and passion. He is a genius of our time just like the artists of the time like Bach and Mozart. I would love to compose with him and have him as an official member of Born divided … ha ha!

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

Our guitarist dreams of playing at 70,000 Tons of Metal. For my part, I would love to play at HellFest and experience this festival as a musician. Otherwise of course the Wacken would also be great but we will start by doing shows in small venues to one day dream of the biggest festivals but hey… it’s always good to dream 😉  

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

We haven’t received any Gifts yet because we’ve only done one show since we started, but hey, I hope it will!

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

Thank you for your support and I hope above all that our fanbase will grow every day and that the world will take the time to discover our band. I know that today we are swimming in countless good bands, but I strongly hope that our group will manage to stand out from the others and find as many fans as possible.

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

I would like to bring John Lennon back and know the songs he could have written if he hadn’t been shot by a fool at such a young age. This guy is there to bring everything for rock with Sir Paul Gilmour… Imagine what he would still have to offer us if he had not died so soon. Rest in peace John.

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

What I love the most is composing music in my studio. Spend hundreds of hours creating what makes me proud. In addition, the composition is a relief valve for me. It allows me to get away from my days of work and the daily stress that can be experienced. I also love doing shows but what I hate the most is the business side of it. Manage finances and find money to invest in the group. So, what is far from the music can seem painful for me because it takes time away from me in the creation of the next album. But hey, we have to do it and we work as a team in the group to share the less pleasant tasks.

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

I wish there was more room for new bands at major festivals. Plus, I also hate the fact that bands just starting out have to pay to be on a tour with a bigger band. Imagine having to pay to do shows when these shows often cost you a lot of money in gas and time? But hey, let’s hope the road will be quick for Born Divided but we are ready to face all the challenges in front of us.

Name one of your all-time favorite albums?

I had 1 at several different times in my life. At 15 it was: Cruelty and the Beast from Cradle of filth. At 25 it was: Wish you were here by Pink Floyd and in the last years it was: The Mountain by the band Haken. But, it’s impossible to choose which is my all-time favorite.

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

I’ve always loved CD’s but right now I enjoy streaming discovering 1000 and 1 bands every week. Vinyl has come back strongly in recent years and with a good reason for music lovers. But I hope cassettes never come back popular… I hated searching for the song I wanted to listen to by fast-forwarding my favorite song at the time.

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

With Born Divided, we only did 1 gig with Augury and Valfreya. But, with my old group Blinded By Faith it was the show with Cradle Of Filth. I also loved our farewell show at RockFest Montebello in 2018 on the same bill as Rammstein.

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

Fortunately for the moment, I am not just a musician because I would have difficulty feeding my children. I am also a music teacher in an elementary school in Quebec. I teach music every day to children from 5 to 9 years old. I love my job and I make them sing Golden Rock and make them discover rock quietly so that one day they can start listening to as much Metal as possible. A comic fact: When I was a teaching intern… That’s when I discovered our Drummer Lucas Biron who was in secondary 5 at the time and I was his trainee teacher and that’s how it was that over time we played in the same show and together formed the group Born Divided.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

I would like to invite Devin Townsend, Nicko McBrain, David Gilmour, Dani Filth and Cyco MiKo to have the biggest influencer party at the same time. I would love to hear all their stories of touring and the craziness they’ve been on since the start of their career.

What’s next for the band?

Our goal for 2022 is to start talking about our band as much as possible and to introduce our music to as many people as possible. We are already writing the next album so that we can bring more songs to Born Divided fans. Stay tuned!

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

Here’s our Hyperlink Impending Doom by Born Divided – DistroKid
Follow us on Facebook: Born Divided
YouTube: Born Divided – YouTube                                                                                           
Bandcamphttps://borndividedofficial.bandcamp.com/album/impending-doom
Hmepage: Borndivided.com
Twitter: Twitter.com/borndivided 
Instagram: Instagram.com/borndivided
Music Video – Human Masqueradehttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hjgHFJ8eX6M

Time for a very British question now. As an alternative to the humble sandwich, is the correct name for a round piece of bread common in the UK either a Bap, a Barm (or Barm Cake), a Batch, a Bun a Cob, a Muffin, a Roll or a Tea Cake

Oh man! I really don’t know but I’ll guess a Bun a Cob? Ha ha !

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

I’d like to thank everyone for your support. Follow us on Facebook and come see us at a show when we are close to your city. Thank you for your interview. It is much appreciated!

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 Féleth

Feleth Logo

EMQ’s With Féleth

Hi everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Norwegian Melodic Death Metal band, Féleth. Huge thanks to their guitarist Alexander Stamnes, 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 Alexander Stamnes, I play guitar in Féleth. The band was formed in 2014 after the group transformed from Iron Bound (thrash metal) to the current line-up in Féleth. In 2016 our bassist (Brage Westgaard) joined the line-up. The following years, we wrote our first EP, “The Covenant”. The EP was released in January 2017. Shortly after the release of “The Covenant”, we began to write “Depravity”. Our first full length album released in May of 2020. 

The release gained good reviews both nationally in Norway and internationally. The album is a product of a wide set of influences from every member of the band’s line-up and showcases the band’s many influences. The years following, we began the process of writing our next full-length album, “Divine Blight”. The band has mostly played locally based venues in Troms and Finnmark since the band was formed. The highlight of the band’s career is playing Tons Of Rock in June of 2022. Earlier this year, we also played By:larm in Oslo.

How did you come up with your band name?

We came up with the band name randomly back in 2014 / 2015. it does not have any particular meaning. However, we soon discovered that it was a female first name in South America.

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

The band comes from Alta. A small town in Finnmark, Norway. The Metal / Rock scene in Alta is quite small. We are the only death metal band in the region. Although, we have some rock bands in the area (Pil & Bue and Not My Time to Die).

What is your latest release?

Our latest release is ‘USA’, the last single for our upcoming album “Divine Blight”. We have also released two other singles for the album (‘Majesty’ and ‘Avarice’). “Divine Blight” is set to be released on the 11th of November. 

Who have been your greatest influences?

My greatest influences are Rivers of Nihil, Architects, Leprous and Sylosis. Josh Middelton of Sylosis and Architects is the greatest influence for myself as a guitarist. 

What first got you into music?

I have always been fond of music. However, I got into playing guitar back in 2008 / 2009. Thinking back to that era, Iron Maiden and Metallica was the reason I got so interested in music and playing guitar. I desperately wanted to learn guitar and play guitar after listening to those bands. 

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

Personally, I would love to collaborate with Architects, Rivers of Nihil, Sylosis, Fit for an Autopsy or Bleed from within. These are all bands I think are great and are bands I myself look up to. 

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

I would love to play Wacken or Hellfest. These are two festivals with a big crowd, and I believe that the atmosphere there would be amazing. In addition, it would be a great opportunity for us as a band to develop, as well as motivate us to become even better.

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

I can’t recall getting a weird gift from a fan, like ever. So I don’t actually know. 

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

Keep supporting us and believing in us. With your support we can achieve great things. 

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

I must say Cliff Burton. 

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

It is a great way to express yourself, as well as getting your ideas out in the world. It is a great way to develop yourself as an individual and it is an excellent way of meeting new and interesting people. And best of all, it is fun being a musician. I can’t think of anything that I hate about it. It’s fun most of the time. 

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

This is a big question. I think this is a question you have to discuss for a long time to find an answer to. The only thing I can come up with, is that modern music, especially popular music, is very template-like. It follows the same formula and it is very predictable. 

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

One of my all-time favourite albums is “And Justice for All…”  by Metallica. It is a fantastic album. 

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

Vinyl is the best. 

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

Up to this date, our best gig must be Tons of Rock 2022. It was a big crowd and an enormous atmosphere. 

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

I am a teacher besides being a musician. So, I guess I would have to say that. 

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Josh Middleton, James Hetfield, Sam Carter, Nico McBrain and Bruce Dickinson.

What’s next for the band?

The release of “Divine Blight”. As well as a couple of gigs related to the release. 

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

You can find the band on Facebook and Instagram.
https://www.facebook.com/FelethBand
https://www.instagram.com/felethband/

You can listen to our music on Spotify and youtube. You can also find us at bandcamp.
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCT6yQSECz1DFXAQ5kWbwfdA
https://open.spotify.com/artist/2gm0VpLO1JoQFZdnMUGwQO
https://feleth.bandcamp.com/releases

Time for a very British question now. As an alternative to the humble sandwich, is the correct name for a round piece of bread common in the UK either a Bap, a Barm (or Barm Cake), a Batch, a Bun a Cob, a Muffin, a Roll or a Tea Cake

I have no idea. I believe it is called a Barm?

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

I have nothing more to add.

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.

Norrskold – Prisma Aeternus

Prisma Aeternus Album Cover Art

Norrskold – Prisma Aeternus
Self-Released

Release Date: 07/11/22
Running Time: 34:49
Review by Rick Eaglestone
6/10

Originating from the cold mountains of Sweden, the once studio-only project Norrskold now release their third studio album “Prisma Aeternus”.

Opening track ‘Witness The Illusion’ gives an early indication into the album’s direction, which continues with a melodic twist during ‘This End’ that I must say with the combination of solos is an early favourite. 

‘Hollow Adoration’ puts a clear stamp on the albums overall aesthetic, which is that of melodic death, but then ‘Perfection Into Solitude’ starts with its slow build up which stays for entirety of the track. It caught me by total surprise, and I massively enjoyed it, so much so that it is easily my highlight track of the album. Normal service then resumes for the mid-way part ‘Dissolved’.

‘Indifference’ combines varying styles before the heaviest track award is awarded to ‘Beyond The Night’.

The short snappy nature of the album only leaves room for two final tracks ‘Only Silence’ & ‘Stars To Reside’, which are very much in keeping with the overall nature and themes that run throughout the album.

‘Beyond The Night’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. Witness The Illusion
02. This End
03. Hollow Adoration
04. Perfection Into Solitude
05. Dissolved
06. Indifference
07. Beyond The Night
08. Only Silence 
09. Stars To Reside

LINE-UP:
Norrskold – Guitars
Johan Tunander – Bass
Robert Isojarvi – Drums
Lisa Hultgreen – Vocals

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Rick Eaglestone 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 Vermocracy

Vermocracy Logo

EMQ’s with Vermocracy

Hi everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with Austrian Melodic Death Metal band, Vermocracy. Huge thanks to their guitarists, Andi and Stella, 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, first of all thanks for your interest. Andi and Stella are answering the questions. We are both guitar players in Vermocracy.

Andi: Roman (Drums) and I (Guitars) are old friends; we have been playing together for many years. We’ve been in different formations before founding Vermocracy. It took some time to assemble the perfect line-up. Michael joined as a vocalist in 2019, after leaving his former Black Metal Band Theotoxin. Stella (Guitars), whom we already knew from her former project Black Coven, was found as a new guitar player later in the same year. Hannes (Bass) has previously worked with Michael in Horns of Hattin and Obsidian Chamber. He became our bass player shortly before recording the debut album. The line-up has been stable since 2020 and has proven to work well during the pandemic and the creative process for two albums. We do not plan on slowing down any time soon.

How did you come up with your band name?

Andi: Our name is a wordplay combining “Vermin” and “Democracy” which perfectly fits our lyrics, critically treating different aspects of humanity.

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

Andi: We are from Vienna, Austria. The scene in here is great. There is so much support from the fans but also a good network of other musicians and promoters. It’s no surprise that there are a lot of amazing and successful bands from our city.

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

Andi: Our second Album “Age Of Dysphoria” was released on September 30th 2022. The first single ‘Necrocracy’ is also out with a lyric video, which you can easily find on YouTube.

Who have been your greatest influences?

Stella: Our main influences are Melodic Death Metal bands from the 90’s and early 2000’s, like In Flames, Dark Tranquillity, At the Gates and Arch Enemy. 

What first got you into music?

Andi: I am into Music since I was born, starting with classical music as well as 70’s Rock. I played my first chords on the guitar when I was 12, but I really got interested in this instrument at the age 16 when I started to listen to Metal. Of course, every member of band would answer with a different story.

Stella: I started listening to bands on the radio, then slowly discovering music on my own from there on.

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

Andi: Probably Jesper Strömblad. He had great influence on my guitar playing, songwriting and my understanding how two guitars interact with each other. 

Stella: With somebody like Kerim (Krimh) Lechner or Eugene Ryabschenko. I would love to see what kind of songs could come up by working with a musician on that high technical level.

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

Stella: Definitely Summer Breeze or Maryland Death Fest – Just from sheer audience participation alone.

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

Andi: None

Stella: None

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

Stella: World Domination 😉

Andi: Thanks for all the support we received over the last years! Everything we have achieved, as a band, wouldn’t have been possible without a supportive fanbase. So, thank you very much for that!

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

Stella: Alexi Laiho

Andi: Sure, Alexi Laiho

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

Stella: Love:  Playing music and travelling; 

Hate: Constant money issues for things like production, merch, gear etc.

Andi: Love:  playing my instrument and our songs live and at rehearsals. I also enjoy practising.

Hate: Everything else

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

Stella: It is pretty much stuck in the past… People should, instead of fetishizing the “glorious times”, start thinking about how to deal with the advanced technologies like Spotify, streaming etc. and how it could still be possible for musicians to get paid decently and continue making music, playing shows…

Andi: It’s not the primary function of music industry to promote “good “music. It’s just a profit-oriented industry like any other. But to be honest I don’t have the experience to comment on this yet. At the moment this is the first time I am working with a label (Black Sunset / MDD records) and they are doing a great job.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Stella: Insomnium – “In the Halls of Awaiting”.

Andi: Children Of Bodom – “Follow The Reaper”.

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

Stella: CDs

Andi: CDs

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

Stella: At the Escape Metal Corner in Vienna with Malevolent Creation headlining.

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

Stella: Sports

Andi: Never thought of that during the last years – probably drinking too much.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Stella: Dani Filth, Vortex, Craig Reynolds, Jeff Walker and Christian Münzer.

Andi: One of the guitar players from Archspire to give me a guitar lesson – I think that’s more than enough for an evening.

What’s next for the band?

Andi: In November we will play an Album Release Show in Vienna and then two more concerts in Graz and Klagenfurt. We are planning more shows for 2023 and are reaching out to bookers and promoters outside of Austria, too.

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

Andi: You can find us on www.vermocracy.at or www.facebook.com/vermocracy . You can hear our music on Spotify and YouTube and order CDs and merch at www.vermocracy.bandcamp.com or at www.mdd-shop.de. For further questions and booking information you can reach us at mail@vermocracy.at

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Stella: Definitely biscuits

Andi: What the hell are Jaffa Cakes?

Thank you for your time. Is there anything else that you would like to add?Andi: Thank you for your interest and support. We hope to see you at one of our forthcoming shows.

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.

Obsidian Skies – Saturnian EP

Saturnian EP Cover Art

Obsidian Skies – Saturnian EP
Self-released
Release Date: 14/10/2022
Running Time: 24:10
Review by Richard Oliver
7/10

Born out of the dissolution of another band and the stresses of the pandemic is new band Obsidian Skies. They are a two-piece Colorado based band made up of Liam Dougherty and Tim Watervoort (both formerly of Endlight) and they are releasing their debut E.P. “Saturnian”. The two collaborated again during the Covid-19 lockdown, trading ideas and sending parts to each other which before long became a fully collaborative writing process from which this release was born.

“Saturnian” is a concept release with the story, spread across three songs, taking place on Saturn’s moon Titan. In this story, humanity is forced to flee from a dying Earth, and a portion of the population colonises Titan. While life is able to flourish there, the people who survived are forced to deal with the emotions of leaving their lost home and the guilt of abandoning those who could not leave the planet.

Musically “Saturnian” is a mix of sounds with influence from melodic Death Metal, Technical Death Metal, Progressive Metal and Symphonic Metal with the band citing influences such as Amon Amarth, Insomnium, Opeth, Fleshgod Apocalypse and Epica. It is a diverse sound with several ideas spread across the three songs which make up the E.P. and a strong sense of melody and technicality permeates the music. The lengthiest song on the release ‘Rebirth In The Stars’ contains the most Progressive and varied sounds across its 11 minute plus duration, with some cool guitar parts, epic orchestration and lush acoustic sections. Likewise, the final song ‘Home’ starts off low key with acoustic guitars, clean vocals and some very light orchestration whilst slowly building in intensity and heaviness but still remaining extremely melodic throughout.

“Saturnian” is an enjoyable first release from Obsidian Skies. Whilst only a three song E.P. it is a very ambitious release with some very epic and complex music on show. There are some dissonant sounding parts which sound a bit out of place at times and it is a release that gets better as it goes on, but it is a release that shows great promise. Obsidian Skies are to remain a studio-only project for now, but they definitely show great potential with their debut release.

TRACKLISTING:
01. Celestial Age
02. Rebirth in the Stars
03. Home

LINE-UP:
Logan Dougherty (Guitars, Piano, Orchestration)
Tim Watervoort (Guitars, Bass, Vocals)

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Richard Oliver 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.

Parius – The Signal Heard Throughout Space

The Signal Heard Throughout Space Album Cover Art

Parius – The Signal Heard Throughout Space
Willowtip Records
Release Date: 07/10/22
Running Time: 01:01:15
Review by Laura Barnes
10/10

Grab your binoculars, because we are headed to the opera! Oh, and you should maybe grab your spacesuit, too, because this is a space opera. 

“The Signal Heard Throughout Space” is one giant leap for Parius. Their previous album, “Tales From The Eldritch Realm” was a flaming meteor of Lovecraftian Melodeath, and there’s only one problem with flaming meteor albums: how on earth can the next album top it? For Parius, the answer is to go bigger and bolder, venture where they’ve never ventured before (okay, I promise I’ll stop with all the space references now). The songs are longer, the vocals are cleaner, and keyboards have crash-landed onto the scene. I have no doubt that there will be some listeners who feel alienated by this shift (Melodeath fans are renowned for being change-averse – I swear, they’ve been holding a grudge against In Flames for about 17 years now…), but I also have no doubt that they’ll endear more people than they’ll piss off. Progressive Metal fans will love this. Sci-fi nerds will love this. Concept album enthusiasts (i.e., me) will eat this shit up like cheese on toast. 

The album follows a lone spaceship Captain searching for the source of a distress signal and describes the various places (both literal and emotional) where his search takes him. During ‘Suspended Animation’ we feel his loneliness and doubt. ‘Spaceflight Dementia’ contrasts a melodic chorus with frantic guitars to create an uneasy atmosphere. And ‘Dimension Y’ has a wonderfully funky bassline! If there’s one thing Metal albums need more of, it’s groovy, groovy bass guitars. And despite their more melodic approach, Parius can’t be accused of ‘selling out’ or any other such nonsense. ‘The Acid Lakes of Ganymede’ and ‘Contact!’ are heavy-hitters that heavy-hit it right outta the park! The more sporadic use of harsh vocals on this album means that when they are used, they’re effective. While this may sometimes result in a sound that is Metalcoreish, it never strays too far from Prog Metal territory. It’s like if Rush or Iron Maiden had a baby with some of the quirkier darlings of Metalcore – Ice Nine Kills, Avatar, Avenged Sevenfold in their “City of Evil” era, etc. What these bands and Parius have in common is a crucial element that lies at the heart of most great art: playfulness. 

I can sit here all day and talk about guitar solos and time signatures (I know how you Prog fans feel about your time signatures), but none of this will be able to convey just how fucking FUN this album is! It is an absolute HOOT! On top of the rock solid song-writing, it is the tiny, tiny details that really uplift this album. The unexpected twists and turns taken in each song, the subtle subversion of expectations you didn’t even know you had, and the pulpy sound effects all work to make “The Signal Heard Throughout Space” an unforgettable listen. 

TRACKLISTING:
01. Spacelog
02. The Signal
03. Suspended Animation
04. Spaceflight Dementia
05. The Acid Lakes of Ganymede
06. The Human Molecule
07. Contact!
08. Dimension Y
09. The Outer Limit
10. Arecibo

LINE-UP:
Lous Thierry – Vocals
Ryan Rauch – Guitars
Kenny Rentz – Bass
Sean Gallagher – Keyboards
Dan Siver – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Laura Barnes 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.

Battlesword – Towards The Unknown

Towards The Unknown Album Cover Art

Battlesword – Towards The Unknown
MDD Records
Release Date: 16/09/2022
Running Time: 44:30 
Review by Richard Oliver
7/10

With a name like Battlesword you would be forgiven for thinking you are going to be listening to a Power Metal band, but Battlesword are a far heavier band than you would expect. Hailing from Germany, Battlesword are a long-running Melodic Death Metal band who formed in 1999 and have several releases to their name with “Towards The Unknown” being the fourth full length album from the band.

Battlesword have a sound that mixes Melodic Death Metal with an old school Scandinavian Death Metal sound. It is gritty ferocity mixed together well with melodic passages bringing to mind the sound of band such as Evocation, Amon Amarth and Unleashed. Songs such as ‘To Become The Wolf’, ‘Hound Of Hades’ and ‘Terra Combusta’ steamroll along with a steady pummelling rhythm with plenty of Death Metal grit whilst having strong yet not overbearing melodies within the music. The most melodic moment comes in ‘The Shores Of I’ which has a quiet and melodic mid-section which allows the listener a breather before the Death Metal kicks right back in. The vocals are all harsh unlike a good chunk of Melodic Death Metal today with the melody firmly contained within the music and Axel has a vocal style that sits in between a higher end Melodeath style and a lower end Death Metal growl.

“Towards The Unknown” is made up of seven new songs and as a bonus the long out of print E.P. ”The 13th Black Crusade” is added on at the end having been remastered by the legendary Dan Swanö who also mastered the main release. “Towards The Unknown” is an enjoyably straightforward Melodic Death Metal release, but its main drawback is that it is just a bit too straightforward with a lot of the songs sounding very similar and having little to help distinguish from each other with most songs having the same pace and formula to them. It is a solid album of Melodic Death Metal but just lacks the fire to make it more memorable whilst still remaining an enjoyable listen.

‘Terra Combusta’ Official Audio

TRACKLISTING:
01. Departure
02. The Awakening
03. To Become The Wolf
04. Terra Combusta
05. The Shores Of I
06. Hound Of Hades
07. Backstabber

Bonus Tracks
08. There Will Be Blood
09. Fire And Storm
10. The 13th Black Crusade

LINE-UP:
Axel – Vocals
Erik – Guitars
Lars – Guitars
Ben – Bass
Andreas – Drums

LINKS:

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Richard Oliver 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.