Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Montreal, Quebec, Canada based Metalcore/Prog band, Eternal Closure. Huge thanks to guitarist/ clean vocalist Olivier Boitel 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?

Hi! I’m Olivier and I play guitar (and sing a little bit too). The band started as a group of friends that just wanted to make some good heavy tunes and play some shows. We’ve been through quite a lot of member changes through our history, taking the project more and more seriously as time goes by. Jo (bass) and I are the only ones that are here since the beginning.

How did you come up with your band name?

Just a pretty typical brainstorm session really. I remember we also had ”A Year and A Day” and “Empty Faces” as some of the other choices. “Eternal Closure” sounded the best to us, and we thought that it could mean different interesting things to different people. We liked the almost-but-not-quite paradoxical idea behind it.

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

We are from Montreal, Quebec, Canada. I feel like our sound is something that is slightly different than what everyone else is doing here. We blend a more old-school melodic metalcore vibe with modern progressive metal ideas while most bands we play with tend to be in a more Hardcore/Deathcore vibe. We end up being the softest band in most shows we play which is kinda fun haha.

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

Our new release, “Color Of Our Fears: Rediscovered” is a re-release of our second album with 3 added tracks that feature Maggy (Lefebvre) on vocals. We thought it was a neat way of showing off the new vocalist while we’re working on larger projects. We also released a fun video for ‘The Slave Or The Owner’, check it out!

‘The Slave Or The Owner’ (Official Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

We blend the sound from metalcore legends like Killswitch Engage, As I Lay Dying and modern metal like Periphery, Currents and Erra. Other influences include Protest The Hero, August Burns Red, Dream Theater, Architects and Haken.

What first got you into music?

Mine and Phil’s (drums) Dad is a huge music fan. He was a drummer in many bands through the years which led to us wanting to play music too. I was pretty much born with drumsticks in my hands and let’s say that I haven’t let go of them ever since. Eventually I wanted to actually write music so that’s when I slowly started picking up the guitar.

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

Good question. Two musicians I’d love to feature in one of our songs would be Spencer Sotelo for vocals with a guitar solo from John Petrucci. That would be pretty badass.

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

Being a headliner in a fest like Heavy MTL would be awesome just because that’s where we come from. Hellfest would also be a dream of ours. The crowds there are just incredible, we want to experience that.

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

I’d love to tell you but either it hasn’t really happened yet or I’m blanking really really hard. I guess once we had a pretty weird show where a drunk girl flirted with pretty much everyone in the band and kept doing it even after we told her we weren’t interested. She didn’t try anything really, but the vibe was kinda awkward and in the end pretty hilarious. So, I guess it counts as a gift just cause it’s a fun memory.

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

We miss playing shows for you. Hopefully, we can get back to that soon. Stay safe until we can!

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

Neil Peart. He’s not the typical “rockstar”, but we all miss him. Such a great mind and musician.

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

Writing music and hearing the final recorded version. I’m really all about the music. I guess the part I “hate” the most is having to talk with strangers. I get uncomfortable really quickly.

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

The fact that being rich and having connections gives you such a head start. It’s pretty much how the whole world works I guess haha. It’s easier to get noticed now though with streaming services and social media which is nice.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

“Fortress” by Protest the Hero. The level of intensity, variety and musicianship is just incredible. I’m pretty sure it’s the album I listened to the most in high school. I’m not as technically proficient as their guitarists are, but they’ve been a huge influence on me.

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

I quite like streaming music on Tidal with the high sound quality and how much they give back to artists. I’ll always have a place in my heart for CD’s though. I still buy some from time to time for bands I love. Makes it more special in a way.

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

Our first album release for “Screaming In Silence” in 2016 felt really special. We gave a memorable performance, and the place was packed. It was our biggest show yet and I’ll always remember it.

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

Probably something having to do with video games or movies. I think I’d be a pretty good screenwriter; I just don’t have the time to fully invest myself into it.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

My bandmates. It may sound cheesy but it’s true haha. I don’t put celebrities on some kind of pedestal.

What’s next for the band?

Writing new songs while we wait until we’re able to play shows. We plan to record some new material sooner than later. Also pet our cats, always.

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


Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

It’s yummy.

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

Cats are the best! Seriously though, check out our video for ‘The Slave Or The Owner’. It’s one of my favourites from “Color Of Our Fears: Rediscovered”. Thank you for the interview 😊

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.

Ancient Curse – The New Prophecy

Ancient Curse – The New Prophecy
Pure Steel Records
Release Date: 29/05/2020
Running Time: 57:48
Review by Tsarina Wilson

Ancient Curse formed in 1985. Since then, they’ve always had the same line up of singer/guitarist Pepe Pierez (ex-Sons of Seasons), guitarist Gunnar Eixleben (ex-Riot Instinct). Bassist Thorsten Penz (G.L.A.S.S.) and drummer Matthias Schroder, and they’re still making great music today. They’re kind of Power Metal, kind of Proggy, and even though they formed way back when, they’re definitely not your typical 80’s band in any shape or form. Their ‘storm and stress’ phase emerged in the mid-1990’s, with one mini and two full-length albums. And now the guys from Bremen are making a return with 9 new heart thumping tracks in the shape of their new release, “The New Prophecy”, which I’m sure you will agree are unique and just amazingly good.

The album starts off with an interesting guitar section, before you get hit with full on powerful, rapid drumming, and just brilliant guitar riffs. I would describe their metal as speed metal meets Nordic, it has so much power behind it and the guitar execution is immense.

The seamless shift between tracks means the enjoyment of the album is continuous throughout with no let up. And their storytelling is superb. Track three ‘The Shadow’ could easily be used in a horror film – think nightmare scene and you’re there. I will add that this album is definitely not one if you’re suffering a hangover (no I wasn’t, before anyone asks!). The constant thundering drumming makes your head bang all the way through.

One thing that stands out, aside from the brilliant drums and guitar work, is Pepe’s incredible voice, which is not only crisp and powerful, but has variations which are enough to set the spine tingling. The backing vocals are also so complimentary to Pepe; they blend seamlessly together, and it just proves that, even after two decades, these guys have what it takes.

Track six, ‘One Moment Of Fortune’, starts off all nice and gentle, then there’s that head splitting drumming again, epic guitar riffs and, just when you think your head might explode, you suddenly go into slow, deep vocals. This is when you can perfectly hear Pepe’s vocal skills, it’s almost haunting. It’s like he’s the embodiment of the monster under your bed! This track is over 7 mins of pure enjoyment, it takes your through every emotion possible, starting gently, building up, going manic, and slipping back to dark and creepy! And the harmonising is brilliant!

Another track which will leave you in no doubt of Pepe’s skills is ‘Mind Chaos’. At 6 minutes plus, the guys certainly give you value for money! And here, Pepe’s voice shifts to almost whisper singing (if Phantom of the Opera ever gets a sequel, they need this track, it will give you goose bumps).

One thing that is evident across the whole album is the effortless way the guys blend together. The guitar riffs have you either playing air guitar or drift into your thoughts, usually just before you’re brutally awoken again by the drumming that could probably wake the devil!

Overall, I love the album and hope they guys don’t make us wait as long for their next album. They break the mould of the way metal should sound and are unique. So many bands just play what everyone else does, but here we have something different, something fresh, but powerful. It’s been a pleasure to review.

01. We Follow The Signs02. Fire And Ice03. The Shadow
04. Man Of The Storm
05. Hypnotize
06. One Moment Of Fortune
07. Forever Young
08. Mind Chaos
09. Prophecy

Pepe Pierez – Vocals/Guitars
Gunnar Eixleben – Guitars
Thorsten Penz – Bass
Matthias Schroder – Drums

Special Guests
Henning Basse – (Metalium/Sons of Seasons)Oliver Palotai – (Kamelot)


Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Tsarina Wilson 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.



Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with Constanța, Romania based Prog/Alt Metal band White Walls 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?

Șerban (bass): We are White Walls from Constanța, Romania, we play a blend of progressive and alternative metal, and we’ve been a band since 2009, with only one major line-up change (but it isn’t because we’re assholes, we swear!)

How did you come up with your band name?

Eugen (vocals): I was the last one joining the band back then and they told me how, but I forgot! Help guys! 😊

Dasu (guitars): It’s actually after the name of a song from Between the Buried and Me, we were and still are big fans. We really loved the concept, that we all start with blank, plain white walls and it’s up to us to fill them with meaningful colours.

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

Șerban: Romania has a pretty diverse and potent rock & metal scene. Having just played at European Metal Festival Alliance 2020, we recently had a chance to listen to exclusive shows by Dirty Shirt and RoadKillSoda, two kickass Romanian bands, that play crossover folkcore metal and stoner rock’n’roll respectively. We have a pretty vibrant underground scene overall, and it’s good to see that people are still being creative and involved with music even in these sad times to be in a band.

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

Dasu: Going back a bit, our last full album, “Escape Artist”, was released in 2013. We just released our latest single and video, ‘Starfish Crown’, from our upcoming full length, “Grandeur”, which will be released this autumn. So stay tuned!

Starfish Crown (Official Video)

Who have been your greatest influences?

Șerban: I think we each have to take turns and list our own personal influences, since those are what ultimately shaped our sound the most, as we don’t really try to sound like any other band when we get together to write music. The music that most shaped my musical outlook was, chronologically: Michael Jackson -> Nirvana -> RHCP -> Deftones. And then the floodgates opened… How about you, guys?

Dasu: I started getting into music pretty much around the same time Șerban did, as we know each other since forever, so I’d say RHCP, Linkin Park, Tool, Lamb of God in my teen years. Then, of course, it all went crazy.

Theo: My idols when I was little were Shannon Larkin from Godsmack and Mike Portnoy from Dream Theater.

What first got you into music?

Șerban: My older sister’s cassette collection. She used to fuck with Nirvana and stuff, it was awesome when I eventually ran into those tapes, and I listened to them A LOT. She bumps Jason DeRulo now, btw.

Theo: The video game Prince Of Persia: Warrior Within. In this game, you are the Prince. So, every time his enemy starts to run after him, the guitar riff from Godsmack’s “I Stand Alone” starts to play. The moment when I heard that riff was the moment my mind clicked and boomed. That’s why I have Prince’s face tattooed on my arm.

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

Theo: I would really love to tour with Gojira. They’re so original and sound incredible live. Also, their drummer Mario is one of the best metal drummers these days so I would love to do some warm ups with him.

Dasu: I would really love for us to hook up with Katatonia. They are really good songwriters and producers and we could learn a thing or two about how they approach music.

Șerban: I think it would be cool to see how someone like Jacob Collier would write parts or arrangements to a prog metal song, so he’d be my choice for a collab. Hit me up Jake, let’s fuck shit up.

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

Șerban: As of August 11th, 2020? Literally any festival.

Theo: Since I was little, I watched streams from Rock am Ring and dreamed about being there someday.

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

Șerban: Their time. I mean it really is weird, think about it: life has so much to offer yet there are people who want to spend their time listening to 4 sweaty Dobrujans playing weird-ass metal. We truly appreciate the gift, nonetheless.

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

Șerban: You know how they say “put one’s money where one’s mouth is”? If you truly care about a cause, get involved. If you really care about the environment, bike to work, start recycling, or give veganism a try. And if you want your favourite artists to thrive, find whatever way to support them you can afford.

Eugen: Support your favourite band! Buy their merch!

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

Șerban: Jeff Buckley. I feel like he still had so much to give.

Theo: Michael Jackson. I don’t care that he was a pop star and not a rock star, haha!

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

Șerban: I love everything except van-butt. Van-butt is what happens when you spend too much time sitting in a van, especially on Romanian roads.

Eugen: Same here. Ten to twelve hours on the road between two gigs is a nightmare.

Dasu: The one beer before the soundcheck holds a special place in my heart.

Theo: Playing on stage and traveling is what I like the most. The less likeable part for me is recording.

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

Șerban: I’d have more people go to live concerts. Make it mandatory or something.

Theo: Giving musicians more from streaming their music.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Șerban: Just one? Today I’ll say… Agent Fresco – “A Long Time Listening”. Absolutely beautiful Icelandic music that sounds like nothing else you’ve ever heard.

Eugen: Aphrodite’s Child – “666”, Iron Maiden – “Seventh Son of a Seventh Son”, Dream Theater – “Images And Words”, Jeff Buckley – “Grace”.

Dasu: Burst – “Lazarus Bird”. Really awesome songs and riffs.

Theo: Ghost – “Infestissumam”. So simple and tasty.

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

Șerban: Lossless downloads for audio quality, vinyl for the ample room for physical artwork.

Eugen: Really worn out cassettes for me!

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

Șerban: Release concert for “Escape Artist” back in 2013 was pretty special. Opening for Deftones in 2011 was a dream come true.

Eugen: An old gig when we had two people in the audience!

Șerban: Ah yes, the infamous Mikolow show. Two people in the audience and we still sold 4 CD’s and 3 t-shirts though!

Dasu: Our latest recorded live show, for European Metal Festival Alliance, as we had the chance to see and listen to ourselves “from the audience”.

Theo: Rockstadt Extreme Fest 2017. Big audience.

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

Șerban: Maybe become a video game developer, or sound engineer, stage manager, videographer, shit, I’m lucky to be someone who likes a lot of stuff and has a lot of hobbies.

Eugen: A bad actor.

Dasu: I am a full-time dentist, so I got that going on.

Theo: Civil Engineer most likely. I’ve always been passionate about infrastructure. I’m also a geographer.

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Șerban: I’d have my closest friends (and incidentally bandmates) to sit on top of another, one trenchcoat per pair, just to fit more people in the party. Or stack’em even higher if the ones on the ground are fit enough. Damn it, now I have to make a spreadsheet for this…

Eugen: Well, I really like eating dinner alone…

What’s next for the band?

Șerban: We’re gearing up for our upcoming album release. The record is called “GRANDEUR” and it’s coming sometime this autumn.

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

Șerban: Our Bandcamp is over at www.music.whitewalls.ro, and we try to point people in that direction as often as we can, since that’s pretty much the only way we can make an actual income that we can invest back in the band. But following us on www.facebook.com/whitewallsofficial , www.instagram.com/whitewallsofficial/ , or Spotify/Apple Music etc really helps, too!

Jaffa Cakes! Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Șerban: They are misunderstood biscuits. Anybody who claims otherwise is forever forbidden to step foot at a White Walls gig.

Eugen: I always thought they were like biscuits with cream, but I don’ t care anymore!

Dasu: Neither… and both

Theo: Biscuit cakes.

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

Dasu: Be kind to yourselves, be kind to others and be kind to all animals.

Theo: Wear masks and wash your hands!

📷 Miluta Flueras ↠ http://fb.com/miluta7

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.

Sertraline – Clouded Minds & Silver Lines EP

Sertraline – Clouded Minds & Silver Lines EP
Release Date: 15/05/2020
Running Time: 19.43
Review by Dark Juan

Hello again, ladies and germs. I appear to be compulsively communicating with you this evening. I can’t stop listening to metal and spewing words out. It’s not like I have even had any Bolivian marching powder today. Unless they have shoved a metric fuckton into this bottle of Sol beer I am drinking. It’s been a testing day at Dark Juan Terrace and I still haven’t made it to the supermarket for the weekly shop. Yes, even hellpriests need to do the weekly shop. I go through a fearsome quantity of oils and unguents – they are so much better for conducting the electricity, you see. You can’t go around torturing nubile young things without lubrication and blood is a shockingly bad lubricant… not to mention it doesn’t smell as nice as moonflower and ylang ylang…

I know, I know. I’m supposed to be writing about records. This time it is a five track EP from the estimable Sertraline, progressive technical metallers from the grim streets of Stoke On Trent. Don’t mock them. Someone has to live there. More than one of the populace of Etruria has claimed to this hellpriest that the best thing about Stoke is the A500 out of it towards either Nantwich or Stafford, depending on whether you run North or South. It does have its advantages though. There are many convenient service stations on your way to Alton Towers through it…

So, “Clouded Minds & Silver Lines” is the EP I am currently enjoying. I’m going to do this review a little differently than normal and do it song by song, if you’ll permit me, with a brief overview at the end. Let us plunge up to our necks into some British heavy fucking metal…

Track one is ‘Inside Out’ and it opens with a gloriously soaring vocal from Lizzie before she demonstrates that she has some serious chops at the lower end of the range as well, switching from clean and waspish to gravel throated vocal martyrdom with no discernible effort. Backed by a band of some quite frankly breathtaking musicians, this song effortlessly sets out the Sertraline stall from the opening moment. Almost impossibly technical and superbly produced, this is a fucking brilliant song.

‘Mean To Me II’ is next, and is a kind of sequel to a song off the 2017 EP “Guilty”. More mid paced than the opener, this song gives the players of instruments time to shine, with some freakishly delicate and complicated guitar work involving distended harmonics and choppy, deadly riffing and Lizzie swapping between a guttural roar and a blank eyed, lost little girl voice before they all launch into one of the finest middle eights I have ever heard. We are talking goosebumps and sex wee everywhere. Gallons of sex wee everywhere. The carpets are ruined. All my pants are utterly destroyed. I haven’t seen Lord Igor Egbert Bryan Clown-Shoe Cleavage-Hoover since he disappeared down the stairs just in front of the sex wee tsunami. This is a fucking brilliant song.

We are three songs in with ‘2205’ and my enthusiasm for Sertraline is beginning to look like a localised ecological disaster. Sir Zeusington Zeus, KCVG, VC, MM, DFC and Bar is looking unfavourably upon the mad, half drunk human cavorting wildly around the room, despite the fact he has been permitted to sleep ON MY BED and Hodgson Biological-Warfare is shouting at me because he got hit full in the face by sex wee and he doesn’t like it. Mrs Dark Juan is also displeased, because a) the carpets are ruined, b) the carpets are RUINED, c) she can’t find Igor either and d) she’s just remembered it was my turn to make tea and I have been seduced by Lizzie and Sertraline. Rather more uplifting in lyrical content than the previous two songs, it slides effortlessly into the lugholes and gives your poor, drug addled brain what can charitably be described as a right good seeing to. This is a fucking brilliant song.

Song four is ‘Screaming For Sleep’ and it’s more fast paced than ‘2205’, but again the musicianship is remarkable in its richness and complexity. Another song with a fucking amazing middle eight and frankly Sertraline are draining me dry, right now. The pressure wave has just blown the front door off the hinges and the street is filling up. There’s animals and furniture heading in all directions. Mrs Dark Juan is screaming about divorce again. Send help. Please. This is a fucking brilliant song.

Fifth and final song is ‘Isolation’ and frankly there is no hope left for humanity. Even though I am now a dried and withered husk, the sex wee just keeps flowing and a number of countries are reporting seismic activity due to the weight of fluid. Iceland is particularly worried because they are having lots of tremors and think that the emanation of millions of gallons of sex wee might have destabilised their already energetic geological fault and that there may be a volcanic eruption. There’s talk of Dark Juan being put on trial for crimes against humanity at The Hague. My defence is literally going to be, “ITS ALL SERTRALINE’S FAULT!!!!!!” This song is notable for the fact that Sertraline don’t seem to give a fuck who they are hurting anymore and just go in for the kill like the seasoned assassins they are. Everything wonderful about Sertraline is distilled into this one piece of musical mastery. There’s polyrhythms. There’s guitar riffs that only 18-fingered mutants can play. There’s syncopation and drumming that can only be performed by supercomputers thanks to fractured time signatures and the vocalist reaching ever further into her vocal range. And the ending is sublime. Fractured riffs play over a single held keyboard note and the virtuosity of guitarists Mike and Tom, and bassist and Keeper Of The Sacred Sauce Hendo is displayed in such a way that I am never picking up a stringed instrument again. There’s no point. This is a fucking brilliant song.

This was supposed to be a quick review. Instead it has turned into another 1000 word epic. Sorry, not sorry. Also, why the hell aren’t Sertraline ABSOLUTELY FUCKING MASSIVE RIGHT NOW?

Buy Sertraline records from now on otherwise I am going to find and execute every single last fucking one of you.

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System thinks Sertraline are fucking brilliant and offers them a prostrated 10/10 because they are just too awesome to be mere mortals. Maybe I have found my gods at last. A contender for record of the year, in my humble opinion.

01. Inside Out
02. Mean To Me II
03. 2205
04. Screaming For Sleep
05. Isolation

Lizzie – Vocals
Mike – Guitar
Tom – Guitar
Hendo – Bass (keeper of the famous Northern relish?)
Si – Drums


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.

Flight of Eden – Dante’s Inferno EP

Flight of Eden – Dante’s Inferno EP
Release Date: 09/04/2020
Running Time: 22:39
Review by Sheri Bicheno

For those that don’t know, Flight of Eden are a prog metal four-piece band from Reading, risen in 2018 from the previous group Zodiark! To me, this new release brings more of a progressive metal feel to that of their 2019 EP “Transition”, which features more of the heavy and groove metal angle of Flight of Eden. The progress these guys have made in such a short space of time should not go ignored, gaining endorsement from Ashdown Engineering, Dingwall Guitars and Payson. Another point to make is the outstanding EP artwork on this release, by Monument’s Will Cross, Which I feel really represents the feel of “Dante’s Inferno”. Look out for a theme in the track titles.

We are welcomed into the EP by short intro piece, ‘Nessus’ – a symphonic organ sounding wave gently washing over us and floating us into ‘Selva Oscura’. This is another short piece, that I feel is designed as a small taster for what else could be coming…transporting from those gentle waves of the first track into a more grandeur melody and riff. The drums are heavy and take us to an abrupt end.

‘Canto I – Virtue’ slams into an aggressive start, with faster strings, and hostility, yet in some places, beautifully soft vocals. About halfway through, we are introduced to some synth keys which help meld the track with the strings, and a slower pace, with some twists of Kurt’s growling entwined with Christian’s soft vocals. Slow but heavy. A perfect symphonic sandwich.

The gentle side of Flight of Eden absolutely shines through the next beautifully put together track, ‘Canto III – Heresy’. This one sets me into a gentle sweep through emotions of love, light and… hope. With beautiful keys and the gentle sways of strings into a few melodic chords, leading then to a bigger light of sound that hits us with Simon’s guitars. I imagine water; healing water when I hear this short piece. Sunshine, ripples, colours, reflections of blue and clouded skies…endless and rolling…

…Which rolls seamlessly into the next faster, harder track, ‘Canto IV – Morning Star’. The guitar through this track tends to stick to one particular melody but keeps the song creative and forward moving. The vocals are not as harsh and tell us of retribution, betrayal, and self-image.

‘Canto V – Purgatorio’ is another short but incredibly beautiful taste of strings. Soft, calm and flowing. I feel these short bursts of serenity on “Dante’s Inferno” are to remind us that there is a balance between peace and sin, dark and light, hate and love. It’s my reflection on things…but these gentle and serene symphonic pieces are an opposite to the longer and more brutal tracks on the EP…it’s a nice change of direction every so often.

A wonderment of piano introduces us to ‘Canto VI – Paradiso’. Another reflecting track, I feel. And then we are hit with a sudden surge of shining vocals about halfway through. No harshness here, just light and beauty. This melts into last track, ‘Virgil’ that gives us the penultimate orchestral strings, suggesting a grand end to a long and very old story.

Flight of Eden have shown on this EP that they can separate themselves from other prog metal bands – the, few, very short tracks that shine so much emotion and beauty, as opposed to mixing that in with their harsher tones in other tracks, makes them stand out somewhat to me. There are elements of conflict and serenity in this album, and it leaves space to draw your own conclusions.

01. Nessus
02. Selva Oscura
03. Canto I – Virtue
04. Canto II – Cerberus
05. Canto III – Heresy
06. Canto IV – Morning Star
07. Canto V – Purgatorio
08. Canto VI – Paradiso
09. Virgil

Kurt Jones – Vocals
Simon Robins – Guitar, Synth, Production
Christian Sturgess – Bass, Vocals
Gualter Couto – Drums


Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Sheri Bicheno 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.

EMQs with Altostratus


Hi everyone! Welcome to our new EMQ’s interview with UK Instrumental Progressive Metal band, Altostratus. Huge thanks to Guitarist Alex Hek 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?

We are called ALTOSTRATUS and we play our own brand of widdly Instrumental Progressive Metal. The band was originally founded by myself (Alex / Guitar) and Jack (Drums). We’ve been musical friends since we were kids and we thought we should start writing in 2014, after being inspired by modern Progressive Metal music from Intervals, Tesseract, and Periphery. Upon the recording of our EP Altitude (2015), we thought we should make this a proper band, and recruited Andrew (Bass) and later found Jordan Harris (Guitar) through his YouTube videos. Since then we’ve been great friends working together and have shared the stage with the likes of Skyharbour, Sarah Longfield, Sithu Aye, and Modern Day Babylon; as well as performing at UK Tech-Fest in 2016 and 2017 (and are returning there again this year!).

How did you come up with your band name?

Jack actually came up with that. The name is inspired by cloud formations and the fact it’s always cloudy where we come from – the North of England! Some of our music reflects this; for example, our song ‘Zephyr’ references the wind through its name and by featuring many ‘airy’ synth layers that serve this imagery.

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

We’re from the UK and the Metal scene seems to be thriving here. There’s loads of bands and a lot of promoters putting on shows right now so it feels like there’s a buzz in the scene. While there might not be many bands of our specific style who play Instrumental Tech-Metal, there’s a lot of acts in the UK Tech scene, and even a festival – UK Tech-Fest, that solely features bands from this scene.

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

We just released our debut album, “Complete The Connection”, which we’re very excited about as it’s been in the works for a while. We spent a large portion of the writing process making sure that the pace of the record as a whole worked from start to finish, and that every song has its own identity. It features our heaviest parts to date, as well as a grander, almost Post-Rock feel throughout. We paid close attention to what every chord says and how every section feels. It’s taken us this long to release as no compromises have been made with regard to composition, and we’ve spent countless hours discussing very minor details. This has accumulated to create a very nuanced, dynamic – and what we believe to be – epic piece of music.

Who have been your greatest influences?

We all listen to a lot of different kinds of music and try to distil all of it into what we do. Our sound is derivative of our individual inspirations but all mixed together. Whilst our album – Complete The Connection – is ,at its heart, a Progressive Metal album, there’s hints of Post Rock in songs like ‘Starlight’ and ‘Complete The Connection’, a full blown Jon Hopkins inspired electronic tune in the middle (Universal Receiver), and in every track there are background layers and production inspired by ambient artists like Nils Frahm and Brian Eno. We couldn’t resist throwing in some Meshuggah inspired, poly-rhythmic breakdowns throughout, but with our own soundscape and unique spin on them.

What first got you into music?

My Dad. He bought me an iPod for my 11th birthday and a whole bunch of CDs to put on it, as well as introducing me to the guitar when I was 12. He started learning guitar, then and inspired me to do the same! I was fascinated by the instrument and this led my interest towards guitar based music. I started out listening to the Arctic Monkeys, The Fratellis, and Green Day, before gradually shifting to heavier and heavier music, until Meshuggah became my favourite band.

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

I’d love to collaborate with Robert Glasper, he’s a Jazz pianist and I love what he does. He makes Jazz/Hip-Hop music and his grooves and harmonic choices make you want to melt in your headphones.

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

Knotfest at Sea. This is just a one-off event right now, but the thought of spending 4 days on a Mediterranean cruise and playing multiple shows onboard is heaven. This was setup by Slipknot and kudos to them as it’s an awesome idea.

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

I don’t think we’ve ever actually received any gifts other than money haha! Ask us that next time and maybe we’ll have a better answer.

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

Thanks for your support, it’s much appreciated, and we couldn’t be here without you. Also, if you come to one of our upcoming shows please be ready to be in 3 Walls of Death when we play ‘Hidden In A Cloud”!

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

Jeff Buckley. He died far too young and his only album is one of my all-time favourites.

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

I really enjoy the process of bringing music and ideas to life, it’s really rewarding. I also love working with others and the people you meet through being a musician. I think connecting and collaborating with others is an essential part of being human.

I hate how hard and cruel the industry can be, the way things are fixed up currently means that you have to pay your way to get somewhere, and the way streaming services are right now mean that it’s hard to make any money from your music. I like streaming I just think the system is very corrupted now, not that it ever wasn’t.

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

I’d like it if streaming services paid a fairer per stream rate and if they weren’t so corrupted, with Pay to Play and fake streams that dilute stream revenue. I know this won’t happen though, just gotta play the game.

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

One by Tesseract. “The Concealing Fate” tracks are honestly the best Metal I’ve ever heard live.

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

Right now, I’d say downloads, they’re much more practical in 2020.

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

Our album launch party back in February was definitely my favourite. It was our first hometown show in ages and we got to party with a big crowd of our dear fans. Not only that, Andrew managed to co-ordinate 3 Walls of Death in one song – that was epic!

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

Probably something business related, if I wasn’t doing what I love (music) I’d want to be making shed loads of money!

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Jens Kidman, Fredrik Thordendal, Tomas Haake, Mårten Hagström, Dick Lövgren. So just Meshuggah basically, maybe they could do us a private show after dinner!

What’s next for the band?

We are touring the UK in April and playing in Edinburgh, Berwick, Glasgow, Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham, and London. We’ll be joined by our Tech-Metal brothers, Pravitas, and you can get tickets from www.altostratusband.com. We’ll be releasing a very exciting music video soon so keep your eyes peeled for that too!

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

Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, all the standards. Here’s the links:


Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

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

We’d like to say thank you for all the recent and on-going support for our debut album, it means a lot to us, and we really appreciate your feedback. Don’t forget that we’re touring the UK this April so look out for our shows and tickets via our website (www.altostratusband.com). If we’re not playing in your city or country soon, let us know and we’ll make an effort to reach you!

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.

Blame Zeus – Seethe

Seethe Cover

Blame Zeus – Seethe
Rockshots Records
Release Date: 08/11/2019
Running Time: 45:37
Review by ‘Dark Juan’

Good afternoon, my children of the nether face of God. I am Dark Juan, and I bring you this epistle from the dark satanic mills of West Yorkshire, rather than the Brittany countryside. There were no more church altars to defile or virgins left. I’d worked through them all… Yes, I have returned to our sceptred isle of Great Britain permanently because rural France is boring. All those people in Blighty who thought they were safe from my tender ministrations should now be quietly crapping themselves because I have returned with vengeance on my mind, murder in my heart and a total lack of beer to mitigate any bad temper. In other news, there are probably a whole lot of other people fearing my return for other reasons – like workmates who will soon be being subjected to my rapid, unintelligible and insane gabbling due to acute caffeine sensitivity and a requirement for a LOT of coffee when working 48 hour shifts. I am also writing my memoirs. Ex-girlfriends and shitbags who have done me wrong – quake in your metaphorical boots, you set of twats!
Ah, the blessed relief of a good and satisfying rant.
I’ll be honest here, I chose to review this Portuguese prog metal band named Blame Zeus simply because “Blame Zeus!” is a familiar and tediously repetitive refrain in Dark Juan Towers (excuse me, it’s Dark Juan Terrace now!) when looking at a severely depleted bank balance. Normally when Sir Zeusington Zeus VC, DFC and Bar, Croix de Guerre, MM, KCVG has cost us another £80 to get medicine to get him to shit out whatever inedible object he has ingested this time. This is something that happens frequently. Which leads us clumsily into a segue deciding whether Blame Zeus are shit or not. I’m good at this writing lark, me.
This album is named “Seethe”. Opening song “How To Successfully Implode” was not what I was expecting when reading the blurb I got with the album. I was expecting sub-grade Lacuna Coil copyism with added twiddly bits. What I actually got was a fucking kick-ass heavy metal track from an instantly likeable band. I’m always suspicious of a band that labels themselves progressive, because prog done right is absolutely magical. Prog done wrong is a bunch of musicians disappearing rapidly up their own arses playing freeform jazz solos on eight string guitars WHILE SOME PIXIE WAILS ABOUT FUCKING FAIRIES AND TROLLS AND OTHER FANTASY SHIT AND THE DRUMMER IS PLAYING 5/4 TIME! Pardon me and my shouting, I am writing this review sober. This is a rare occurrence.
Vocalist Sandra Oliveira is excellent throughout the record. She is a barrel lunged chanteuse who is best described as a combination of Cristina Scabbia with more vocal control and the much loved (in Dark Juan’s twisted black gutter of a soul, anyway) Helen Vogt of the late and lamented Flowing Tears, and the band’s command of English is actually superb. It is relevant to note this because I now know at first hand just how difficult it is to communicate in another language, let alone compose and create in one. Bonus marks for intelligence…
Blame Zeus’ music is difficult to describe accurately. I wouldn’t say its progressive metal. I’d say its heavy metal with progressive elements. The riffs are meaty and satisfying, the production quality very good (if bass heavy, my poor headphones were buzzing like a swarm of seriously perturbed hornets on more than one occasion – I think the producer of the record is possibly a devotee of Phil Spector’s wall of sound) with generally excellent clarity apart from the previously mentioned overwhelming of my cans, and the musical arrangements inventive – and this is where the progressive elements part of my description comes in – in the middle eight of the song, or in the intro and start of a song is where you’ll find the most progressive sounds. Apart from ‘The Warden’. This song could be off any Tool album in the “Aenemia, Lateralus” and “10,000 Days” era. Luckily, these are splendid benchmarks to be judged against, so please do not count this as a demerit. ‘The Crown And The Gun’ has an extremely unusual start where it sounds like a bizarre three way musical coupling of Muse, Tool and Alice In Chains before the guitars kick in and lay you out with a hobnailed boot to the solar plexus. The solo on this tune is extremely prog though – all Eastern sounding before Sandra launches into ethereal wailing with lashings of reverb, chorus and echo before the song is dragged kicking and screaming back into the glorious light of metal and reminded what it actually is, which is a fucking heavy metal song and its only reason for existence is to be spectacularly violent and to cause ears to bleed. Which it did!
I like Blame Zeus. They were a fortuitous choice to review. Highlights are the opening song, which is an absolute heavy fucking metal triumph, ‘Down To Our Bones’ which has some excellent interplay between male and female vocals and ‘The Crown And The Gun’ which I believe represents EXACTLY what Blame Zeus are aiming for. I want to hear a lot more. I love Sandra’s voice, which is operatic without being overpowering, the music because it is after all heavy metal with added intelligence and the band sounding like they are enjoying themselves. There is far too much totally po-faced prog metal that causes this hellpriest to imagine the band spending hours discussing how to synocapte the drums in the most obscure time signature possible whilst sipping green tea and complaining that seven notes are simply not enough, before crapping out some 22 minute “song” about the siege of the Elven Kingdom of Walpurgia by the Orken Hordes of Shitbaggium. Anyway, Blame Zeus are good. If you like bands like Tool, Visions Of Atlantis, Flowing Tears and the like, then you will like them too. That was a deliberate attempt to see how many grammatically correct “likes” I could fit into a single sentence. You should buy their records. Do it. Do it NOW.
The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System would have done this bit in Portuguese, but doesn’t have Google Translate as we are currently sans internet (maybe the mighty beast of metal that is Victor Augusto of Ever Metal fame will be able to assist!) awards Blame Zeus a thoroughly disreputable 8/10 for an hell of an enjoyable record.
01. How To Successfully Implode
02. Déjà Vu
03. Down To Our Bones
04. White
05. Bloodstained Hands
06. The Obsession Lullaby
07. Into The Womb
08. No
09. The Warden
10. The Crown And The Gun
Sandra Oliveira – Voice
Ricardo Silveira – Drums
Paulo Silva – Guitar
Tiago Lascasas – Guitar
Celso Oliveira – Bass


Promo Pic1
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.

Opeth – In Cauda Venenum


Opeth – In Cauda Venenum
Moderbolaget / Nuclear Blast
Release Date: 27/09/2019
Running Time: 67:44
Review by Cliff Scowen

First of all, I’m not going get drawn into the which Opeth is better the old or new, guttural growls or clean vocals, as Opeth fans are intelligent enough to figure it out themselves.
Secondly, having been a massive fan since the “Orchid” album people may think I am a bit biased in my review. Well I’m not. I don’t have to be when an album is this good. In nearly 30 years, I’ve seen Opeth evolve from a full-on death metal band to the prog metal legends they are today.
So, to album number four of clean vocals. The title means ‘Poison In The Tail’, frontman Mikael Akerfeldt recorded two versions one in English and another in Swedish and we get 10 tracks covering 70 minutes of majestic music.
Opener ‘Garden of Earthly Delight’ is a delightful, atmospheric piece with its choral chanting and voice overs, setting the tone of what’s about to follow. With the opening track seamlessly slotting into ‘Dignity’ with some seriously cool percussion and heavy riffs, it’s good finding Akerfeldt in great voice early into the album.
The first single from the album ‘Heart In Hand’ sees us in refreshingly classic Opeth territory, Axenrot’s drum fills alongside Akesson’s riff made it nigh on impossible for me not to nod my head.
’Next of Kin’ has a much darker feel, haunting choirs set around a crystal clear acoustic guitar and I guess you could call ‘Lovelorn Crime’ the albums ballad, hearing those piano chords entwining with Axenrot’s drums and Martin’s bass and a deeply felt solo is a joyous thing to hear, a true masterpiece.
The surreal sound of ‘Charlatan’ seamless musical interludes is backed by operatic monks and ‘Universal Truth’, a huge melody with faultless piano work is so full of angst and emotion. We see ‘The Garrotter’ next with its alluring intro and it’s almost jazzy feel certainly keeps Svalberg busy on keyboards.
We, then, hit more familiar ground with ‘Continuum’, Akerfeldt pushing his band and musical boundaries as only Opeth can. Akessons use of the wah-wah pedal is outstanding and so to closer ‘All Things Will Pass’ which has an almost anthemic feel to it, has enough musical hooks to catch the ear of the listener. I have heard that Akerfeldt’s voice sounds rawer on the Swedish version but I’m putting that down to him singing in his native tongue, just as “Ghost Reveries” was back in 2005.
“In Cauda Venenum” is another watershed moment in their distinguished career, an album combining all the mesmerising qualities of its predecessors “Heritage”, “Pale Communion” and “Sorceress “and taking it to another level.
A very easy……10/10
Standout Tracks: ‘Continuum’, ‘Universal Truth’, ‘Lovelorn Crime’
In Cauda Venenum Track listing (English/Swedish):
1. Garden Of Earthly Delights / Livet’s Trädgård
2. Dignity / Svekets Prins
3. Heart In Hand / Hjärtat Vet Vad Handen Gör
4. Next Of Kin / De Närmast Sörjande
5. Lovelorn Crime / Minnets Yta
6. Charlatan
7. Universal Truth / Ingen Sanning Är Allas
8. The Garroter / Banemannen
9. Continuum / Kontinuerlig Drift
10.All Things Will Pass / Allting Tar Slut
Band members
Mikael Akerfeldt – Guitar/vocals,
Fredrick Akesson – Guitars,
Carlos Martin – Bass,
Martin Axenrot – Drums,
Joakim Svalberg – Keyboards.

Review reproduced here with kind permission of Cliff Scowen and MDR
Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Cliff Scowen. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of said parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.

Quantum Pig – Songs Of Industry And Sunshine


Quantum Pig – Songs Of Industry And Sunshine
White Star Records
Release Date: 01/02/2019
Running Time: 40:36
Review by ‘Dark Juan’

Well, this is not what I was expecting at all. I am confounded, astonished and surprised all at once. I was expecting some kind of insane industrial blaster. Instead, I have got a Prog Rock band who simultaneously claim they are not a Prog band. This immediately gets the antennae quivering.
Hello, I am Dark Juan and I have stopped the DIY hell I am suffering in my kitchen in order to give you the (drunken) benefit of my wisdom on “Songs Of Industry And Sunshine” by Quantum Pig, which is a fucking great name for a band. Don’t argue. You’re wrong because you don’t know what a quantum state is. I SAID DON’T ARGUE! YOU! YOU THERE, WAVING YOUR HANDS ABOUT AND EXSPOSTULATING! PACK IT IN! NO-ONE IS IMPRESSED AND THIS IS MY REVIEW, SO YOU CAN JUST SOD OFF, OK? Don’t make me unleash the Evil Ones… the Evil Ones being my excuses for dogs. There is Sir Zeusington Zeus KCMG, VC, MM, MC, DFC and Bar who WILL raid your food regardless of what security provisions you have in place, Sir Igor Egbert Cleavage-Hoover who will just shout at you until you submit to his will (don’t ever eat a sandwich in his presence if you are female. You will see why he is called what he is…), and finally Hodgson Fartpants (named for the author Willaim Hope-Hodgson, a criminally ignored and extremely innovative author who arguably wrote the first sf novel entitled The Night Land and once lived in Borth near Aberystwyth, as did I. Wales became too hot for me after I defiled a priest’s daughter on the altar in St. Michael’s in Aberystwyth. At Communion…) Hodgson has just recently returned from a dodgy regime somewhere in the world where he was seconded to their armed forces for his skills at anal chemical warfare… Ooops, sorry. Three hundred words in and I haven’t said a fucking word about the music. I know I’m new here, but you are going to have to get used to this. It will happen A LOT.
Quantum Pig, then. An extraordinary duo based in London, in good old Blighty. A pair of very irritatingly talented men whose music is currently entertaining me mightily. Imagine Pink Floyd seducing Soundgarden to a soundtrack of Rush. Now try to rid yourself of that mental image. Good luck and I’ll see you on the other side of the subsequent counselling you will have to endure. Anyway, this is what Quantum Pig sound like and I have to say although it’s only April, this album is a contender for record of the year. I fucking love it! Remember Sugar? Bob Mould of Husker Du’s other band? This is Sugar on prog steroids, baby! I love the melody of it. I love the fact that I can hear profound lyrics instead of, “WOOOOAARRRRRRGGGGHHHHH! Hurgh hurgh grrrrr waoooOOOOOO!” I like Ian Faragher’s voice and I like Mark Stevenson’s bass playing. I like the production on the record. It is crystal clear and sharp and entirely in keeping with the sound of the record. I like the guitar work and sound and how it doesn’t overpower the rest of the instruments. I like the bass sound’s clarity. I like the vocal harmonies the gentlemen employ. This is a fine record. It may not appeal to the metal purist, though. It could be considered somewhat lightweight for the person who has only ever listened to Chimaera, or who thinks metal starts and stops with Slipknot. This should not dissuade you from expending serious currency on Quantum Pig. Expand thy mind, metal pilgrim. Expand thy mind. There is more to metal than brutality. Sometimes it is composed of the most incredible magnificence and beauty. Sometimes it’s a fanged murder machine. Sometimes it pays to listen to something other than out and out metal. “Songs Of Industry And Sunshine” will reward repeated listens. I don’t want to quote lyrics, because I will ruin the wonderfulness of them, but the words are sublime. You can trust me on this.
The opening track ‘Statement Of Intent’ is just that, a song that sets the tone of the record in a rather remarkable fashion, all biting guitars and thought-provoking lyrics and things improve with the second track. In fact, it’s an upwardly trending curve of wonderfulness until we get to album closer ‘Dirty Old Engine’. Then Quantum Pig falter. You should know that I am not a fan of ballads. In fact, I fucking hate them with a venom akin to a genocidal maniac. They ruin albums. They are turgid, awful, personality-masturbating things that have no place in metal. I have a test for ballads – if it is not as good as Skid Row’s 18 And Life (being the only tolerable ballad I have ever heard) then it’s shite, mate. While ‘Dirty Old Engine’ is not quite a ballad, it does cost Quantum Pig a mark or two because their record ends on a damp squib, and not on the coruscating orgasm of magnificence it should have done. Bad Quantum Pig. Very bad Quantum Pig indeed.
However, drunken ranting aside, this is that rare thing. A prog metal album that is easy to listen to, challenging in parts, thought-provoking in lyrical content and rocks like an absolute motherfucker. Good Quantum Pig. We like it when you do that.
This record will be remaining on The Dark Juan Playlist Of Doom, Horror, Sexual Perversions And Obscure 70s TV Theme Tunes for quite some time. I suggest, no actually, I REQUEST AND REQUIRE YOU ALL BUY THIS RECORD AND CEASE YOUR POINTLESS PROTESTATIONS!
Thank you very much. I’ll be here until I’m fired.
The Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System awards Quantum Pig a genocidally bloodsoaked 9/10. Good job Mrs. Dark Juan is in Blighty, really. I’d have some explaining to do about why the village is so quiet…
01. Tracklist
02. Statement Of Intent
03.Citizen And State
04. Long Letter Home
05. The Shadows We Miss
06. Things
07. Keep The Nation Warm
08. Dirty Old Engine
Ian Faragher – Vocals, guitars, keys
Mark Stevenson – Vocals, bass, keys


Quantum Pig press photos
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.

Oh. – Metallia

Metallia Cover

Oh. – Metallia
Release Date: 28/07/2018
Running Time: 25:13
Review by Dawn King

I don’t know if this is true for everybody, but there comes a time every now and then that I get bored of listening to the same ol’ music and want to find something “different.” Well, you can’t get much different than Oh.
Oh. is Greek progressive metal multi-instrumentalist, composer and producer, Olivia Hadjiioannou who arrived onto the international music scene in 2013, with her award-winning debut EP, “Sleeping World”. She has since released a prog-metal album “Synemotion” on vinyl and four avant-garde progressive ballads and her latest project is this album “Metallia” released in July of 2018.
Since her appearance on the music scene, she has accumulated many honours including, but not limited to, three international music video awards, most recently at the London Greek Festival for single ‘Deserted Eyes’, semi-finalist in the 2017 International Songwriters Competition and she had been added to the Prog Archives in the Crossover Prog Category.
Driven by a passion to musically reveal an “inner-story”, she can play the guitar (electric and acoustic), bass, drums, violin, piano and percussion and her voice has been compared to the likes of Kate Bush, Tori Amos, Happy Rhodes, Céline Dion, Melissa auf der Maur, Sharon den Adel and Anneke van Giesbergen (impressive list eh?). She composes, produces, mixes and masters her music in Athens, Greece.
Playing all those instruments, Oh. is a true do-it-yourself artist but she says; “I never felt as if there were a question of whether I can play music or not. Music is always a question of whether you have something to say.”
And she certainly does have something to say. Her music “evokes intense imagery, entices the listener to journey into epic sonic landscapes and finally escape into intense ecstatic oblivion!” She wants to touch the soul with her music, whether that be in “the dark recesses of sorrow or the heights of elation.”
But you need to listen carefully to her music because there is so much more to her than first appears. Combining frenetic, harmonic guitar solos, multi-layered vocals, head-banging riffs, fantastical violins, groovy bass lines and furious drumming, there are many twists and turns to her progressive rock and metal style. And let’s not forget, this lady plays ALL of the instruments herself!
Since its release in 2018, the album has had 32 different reviews from thirteen countries worldwide, was in the top 10 of the 2018 Progressive Metal EP Chart and was listed as one of the best albums of the year in 2018 by Metal Nation Radio!
Described by the lady herself, the album is an “epical prog-metal compilation in 6 parts – a multi-layered sonic piece of ravishing solo electric guitars, time-bending tempo shifts, grooving bass lines and deranged drums” and she is not far wrong!
Featuring just six tracks and lasting a little over 25 minutes, this album goes against everything that should be considered ‘epic’ but that is the only word I can think of to describe it. It is eccentric (I can see where the Kate Bush and Tori Amos references come in!), atmospheric and really does conjure up all sorts of images in your head while you are listening to it. The guitars whisper of Satriani and Vai and there is a whole host of musical sounds (wails, screams, bongos to name a few) to take you on your journey which Oh. describes as a spiritual one that will “transmute your subliminal mind map.”
‘Experimental’, ‘eclectic’, ‘strong’, ‘packs a punch’ are just a few of the words and phrases I have seen to describe this album and I would agree with every single one of them. Although instrumental (how the album is described by Olivia herself!) prog-metal is not really my thing, I can recognise talent where I see it. And this is one extremely talented woman!
This album won’t appeal to everyone, but anyone with a love of progressive music in general should really check it out!
But be prepared to be gob-smacked, bowled-over and totally amazed all at the same time!
1. Red Lion
2. Bee
3. Androgyny
4. Resurrection
5. Dragon’s Kiss
6. Triumph



Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dawn King 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.