EMQ’s With SPLINTERED THRONE

Splintered Throne Logo

EMQ’s With SPLINTERED THRONE

Hi everyone! Welcome to another EMQs interview, this time with USA Hard Rock/ Traditional Metal band, Splintered Throne. Huge thanks to Vocalist, Lisa Mann, and Guitarist, Jmo, 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?

Lisa: I’m Lisa Mann, and I’m the vocalist and main lyricist.

Jmo: I’m Jason Moser, aka “Jmo,” I play guitar and write the majority of the music.  The band has been around since 2006.  Kris Holboke (drums) and I got here in about 2010.  That’s when the direction of the band morphed a little towards more of the traditional / heavy metal sound we have now.  With the addition of Lisa after one of our founding members left around COVID-time, and the addition of Matt Dorado on guitar after the previous guitar player left around COVID-start, we have ST version 3.5 and are ready to get the next chapter started. 

How did you come up with your band name?

Jmo: It was here when I got here. Something to do with D&D and something you don’t want to sit on in thin shorts.

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

Jmo: We hail from the great Pacific NW,  specifically, Portland, OR.  The scene Post-COVID is hopefully going to blossom back into something great.  There are not many original Hard Rock venues left and the market is oversaturated with tribute bands.  There is a thriving Rock scene here hoping to change that, though.

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

Lisa: We are releasing our first album as a female-fronted band on the 19th of August.  It’s a kickass Traditional Metal album titled The Greater Good of Man.  There’s three singles that we’ve been releasing prior to the album release, “The Reaper is Calling” (released 27 May), the Dio-inspired “Morning Star Rising” (24th June) and the title track “The Greater Good of Man” (8th July). And now the title track is released, our album pre-sale has started as well. 

Who have been your greatest influences?

Lisa: For me it’s all those loud, belting metal singers from the ’70s, ’80s, and beyond.  Bruce Dickinson, Rob Halford, and Ronnie James Dio, mainly, as well as King Diamond, Freddie Mercury, Eric Adams and the like.  Also a bit of Ann Wilson, of course.

Jmo: Anything with a good riff and a good hook, though my background is deeply rooted in early ’80s NWOBHM, Hard Rock/Metal and early Bay Area Thrash Metal.  On any given day though, you might find Yacht Rock to Ballyhoo in the play rotation. 

What first got you into music?

Lisa: I loved music as a child, I would sneak downstairs in the middle of the night and listen to the radio with my head right next to the speaker.  As a kid, I was really into KISS and had their posters all over my walls.  I thought Gene Simmons was so cool, breathing fire and spitting blood and singing and playing bass at the same time. Funny how I grew up to be a singing bass player.

Jmo: Wanting to meet girls. Then I started playing live and writing and then next thing I knew, it was all about the music.  Girls were a ‘bone-us’!!  Did I spell that right?! 😉 

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

Lisa: I would like to work with Alex Skolnick, on either a metal or contemporary blues album. He is a nice guy, and a very three-dimensional musician.

Jmo: I am already collaborating with the preferred musicians. 

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

Lisa: I would love to play Bloodstock, it’s a killer festival and I love the UK.  It’s held near the Peak District, one of my favorite places in the world.  There are oatcakes there waiting for me!

Jmo: Wacken Open Air.  It has been my dream to just go, let alone play there. 

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

Lisa: A blues fan found an antique lamp that is shaped like a guitar, with strings on it. She hand-painted a bass clef on it and brought it to me at a gig.  I absolutely love it!

Jmo: A guy drew a picture of us while we were performing at a gig in Everett WA. It still hangs on the fridge in the studio. 

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

Lisa: Just “thank you for listening!”  It means a lot when you put your heart and soul into creating music, and then people listen to it and give you positive feedback.  No feeling like it in the world.

Jmo: Thank you for your support and enjoying our tunes.  Without you, we are just 5 mopes in my garage writing what we like. The fact you like it too makes us all warm and fuzzy inside. 

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

Lisa: Ronnie James Dio. 

Jmo: Randy Rhoads!

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

Lisa: I guess I most enjoy the creative aspect.  It’s wonderful when you can make something up out of thin air, record it, and then this amazing thing exists.  What I hate most is dealing with the legal aspects of being a working musician.  That often involves math.

Jmo: I love playing live, followed a close second by the writing and creative process.  I can do without the business side. Loathe it. 

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

Lisa: It would be to make it more artist-centered, to give artists more control, and weed out the middlemen. 

Jmo: Better financial opportunities for artists.  As convenient as streaming is, .0006 cents a stream does not help get the next album, merch article, or tour very far. 

Name one of your all-time favourite albums?

Lisa: Dio – “Holy Diver”.  That should be on everyone’s top ten album list at least.  RJD with Vivian Campbell, Vinne Appice, and Jimmy Bain was a unique and untouchable combination.  And something magical was happening with the songwriting and studio process. 

Jmo: Iron Maiden – “Killers”.  Such a classic album from start to finish.  It’s one of those ones you put on and just let it go all the way through.

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

Lisa: I still think CDs are best – you get high quality audio with full frequency range, plus the case with credits, photos, maybe lyrics, and maybe even the artist’s autograph.  But FLAC is a great format too.

Jmo: I like the Downloads for the access and portability to take and share music everywhere.  

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

Lisa: As a blues artist, I’ve had so many amazing gigs. I really enjoyed playing Blues Now in Basel, Switzerland.  They really roll the red carpet out for artists.

Jmo: The one we did supporting Metal Church and Armored Saint was recently popping up in the FB feed.  That was a great night. Packed, and we made a ton of fans.  I also remember hearing someone tell another person “That’s how you write a rock song” with reference to our set.  That put a huge smile on my face. 

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

Lisa: I would be pushing up daisies.

Jmo:  Same here!!

Which five people would you invite to a dinner party?

Lisa: Eddie Kramer, Klas Ahlund, Sylvia Massy, Rick Rubin, and I would bring Chris Tsangarides back to life. Can you imagine the stories??

Jmo: This is the 2nd time I’ve had this question and my answers will probably be different than the last time, just because I really could give it some thought! Gordon Ramsey so the food is good and if it’s not…look out!  Dave Atell because he is funny as heck.  Scott Ian because he tells great stories and has a great sense of humor.  Bill Burr because between he and Atell, they will have us roaring.  And last but not least, I would bring back Dimebag for all the reasons we miss him so much. 

What’s next for the band?

Lisa: We want to get “The Greater Good of Man” into every pair of ears possible!  And perform for them in person as well, far and wide.

Jmo: I second what Lisa has to say.  We need to get on that because I have already started writing for the next release!!

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

Lisa: Our website is www.splinteredthrone.com

You can also connect with us here:
www.splinteredthrone.bandcamp.com
facebook.com/splintered.throne
twitter.com/splinterdthrone
instagram.com/splintered_throne
youtube.com/splinteredthrone

Jaffa Cakes? Are they a cake or a biscuit?

Lisa: I ate one once in the UK a long time ago.  They don’t have them here in the US.  I just remember not liking it, whatever it is!

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

Lisa: Just a huge thank you to you for your interest in the band, and a huge thank you to those reading this who are still hungry for Heavy Metal!

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.

Bullet Ride – At The Gates of Hell

At The Gates Of Hell Album Cover Art

Bullet Ride – At The Gates of Hell
Français Music Records
Release Date: 21/01/2022
Running Time: 47:35
Review by Victor Augusto
8/10

Hello my beloved friends! Welcome back to more confusing thoughts from a brain damaged Brazilian person. Today I got my first band to listen to from France since back in 2020, when I reviewed Sins of Shadows, and it is always cool discover to new bands from a country that has a great history of embracing Brazilian bands like Angra during the nineties (and also Kamala on their recent European tour). Today we have a very good debut album for those who love Power Metal, or maybe I can even say that we have in front of us a good mix of Traditional Metal and Power Metal, with a lot of extra heavy stuff to offer as well.

Melodic vocals are always a thing that can be a bit hard to talk about, at least for me. I personally don’t like it too much when bands use high notes all the time and I tend to prefer styles more oriented to what Ronnie James Dio used to do, not just with his voice, but for all the emphasis he used. Here, Emmanuelle Dal Grande does a great job on her vocal lines, working on a thin line between the high and not so high ranged notes. In contrast to this melodic way of singing, the rest of the band offer a few guttural parts, although it wasn’t always exactly well executed, for example in ‘Somewhere Else’. 

These vocals sounded a bit powerless, sometimes even slightly annoying in places, although they fitted in well in some parts. But what is undeniable is the fact Emanuelle really knows how to create good vocal lines. Maybe with a little more improvement on the guttural parts, it would sound better. But the best aspect is how clear and understandable her words are on the more melodic parts. Even for me, a monkey Brazilian who barely knows how to speak my own language, I could perfectly understand most of the lyrics. 

Musically, there are some great passages of heaviness and speed. I couldn’t exactly find the Thrash Metal references as the band mentioned in their press release, and I felt that there were more Death Metal influences, judging by the blast beats delivered by Thibaut Meunier, plus those guttural vocals as well. Nevertheless, don’t fool yourself – the main style here is good Power Metal, very much oriented and akin to Blind Guardian. 

By the way, the guitar work of Alexandre Duffau and Hernandez reminded me in many parts of what we hear from those German masters, mainly on “Imaginations from The Other Side” and “Nightfall in Middle-Earth“.  Things like the good technical solos, without the extreme abuse of speed, and not many melodies or short solos alongside the rhythm guitar, when the focus was supposed to be the riffs and not the melody.

From the opening song ‘World on Fire’ until ‘Eternity’ you will be fulfilled by some great heavy music, full of good moments and energy. In ‘All At Sea’ though, things calm down in terms of cadence, which is quite cool. Bassist Stéphane Laborde also has his space throughout the record, especially on the beginning of ‘Dead and Back’.

“At The Gates of Hell” is a good album despite not being my favourite kind of music. The highlights here are how they offer a good slab of heaviness and don’t let the melodic side become massive or boring. For sure, with more experience, they will be able to offer amazing releases, considering that this debut is already pretty good.

‘At The Gates Of Hell’ Official Video

TRACKLISTING:
01. World on Fire
02. What Comes After
03. Point of No Return
04. Somewhere Else
05. Weather the Storm
06. Naked Greed
07. Eternity
08. All at sea
09. Dead and Back
10. At The Gates of Hell

LINE-UP:
Emmanuelle Dal Grande – Vocals
Alexandre Duffau – Guitars
Hernandez – Guitars 
Stéphane Laborde – Bass
Thibaut Meunier – Drums

LINKS:

Bullet Ride Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Victor Augusto 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.

Katana Cartel – The Sacred Oath

The Sacred Oath Album Cover Art

Katana Cartel – The Sacred Oath
Self-Released
Release Date: 26/02/2021
Running Time: 48:07
Review by Simon Black
10/10

The debut album from these Melbourne, Australia based metallers has, like so much of the last eighteen months, been put completely on hold by Coronavirus. When this is your debut release, the decision to hold back or plunge forward is slightly trickier. Debut albums are critically dependant on bands’ getting out on the road and working their dues in gruelling support slots until enough people realise they are there and start creating demand for their music; then it’s about working the brand for all its worth. Australia and the state of Victoria have been locked down harder and longer than most (as my father, who lives there, never ceases to remind me) and so to release an album too soon and risk it disappearing, relatively unheard, despite rave reviews cannot be ignored. Equally, the financial costs associated with the production need to start to be met, which no amount of streaming success will balance out. It’s a tough call and my personal view is that a band should have the courage of their convictions and keep moving forward if they can. So with no sign of things lifting out of lockdown enough for touring to start any time soon, we need to work on the basis of what’s available and try and support the acts themselves, which is why I always ask people to buy the product directly from the band or label’s web site – even if they dip their toe into the streaming waters to see if they like it first. Because if we don’t there won’t be many new bands for us to enjoy.

And enjoy is the key word with this record, something the band clearly do and that infectiously spreads to the listener. Like many debut’s Katana Cartel have had a longer gestation period and the material presented is likely to be the pick of the material the band has crafted to date. Equally, when you are self-produced there is also the danger that without a manager or label forcing editorial decisions that the path of self-indulgence sometimes opens up. I need not have worried in this case, as the eleven tracks on here feel wisely chosen, well-written and a great showcase to the musical abilities of the band.

This is punchy and lively traditional Metal, with a strong early Thrash sentiment underpinning it instrumentally. Vocally the style is largely clean, but with enough of the Thrashier aggressive vocals mixed in to keep it from sounding retro, so consequently you can absolutely hear the influences, but the overall feel is very fresh and modern. What this translates to is anthemic and energetic songs liberally interspersed with some blistering technical time changes and instrumental interludes which show off the skill without being self-indulgent. OK, maybe they do a bit with the album’s closer (the brilliantly named 2000 AD comic tribute) ‘Judge Shredd’, as when you are treading the same lyrical path as one of Thrash’s Big Four, you need to differentiate. Which they admirably do, with several minutes of pile driving blistering shredding and playing that’s tighter than a possum’s bum hole and then counterbalanced by a more melodic and gentle few bars to counterpoint it and close it. It’s a great bit of playing and that’s probably the weakest track on the album!

I really can’t fault the rest of the record and its infectious energy has slowed down my writing, as I’ve been loath to stop listening and move on to what’s next in the pile. That tells me this is an act that I’m going to enjoy listening to for a while longer and therefore one that’s got legs. I’m normally slightly more generous on my scores with new bands, as I cut a little slack first time out, but in this case the score is fully deserved and if I could have gone up to eleven I would have. Because that’s what the band have delivered.

TRACKLISTING:
01. War Prelude
02. Air Raid
03. Bang Your Head
04. Night Town
05. Dime A Dozen
06. The Battle
07. Fragile Denial
08. Grenade
09. The Art Of Self-Destruction
10. Judge Shredd

LINE-UP:
Steven (FluFFy) Falkingham – Vocals
Rob (Rockit) Georgievski – Rhythm Guitar
John (JP) Price – Drums
Matt (Matty) Lentile – Bass Guitar
Dylan (Dylzy) Reeves – Lead Guitar
Dr. Mike Trubetskov – Keyboards

LINKS:

Katana Cartel Promo Pic

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.

Graham Bonnet Band – Live In Tokyo 2017

Live In Tokyo 2017 Cover

Graham Bonnet Band – Live In Tokyo 2017
Frontiers Music s.r.l
Release Date: 12/07/2019
Running Time: 72:15
Review by ‘Dark Juan’
10/10

Good evening, my flock of the disaffected, the vain, wall eyed and insane. Tonight you are going to witness a man totally lose his shit about a woman. Possibly..!
It is well known I am not a fan of live albums, because the live experience requires a visual component. Thankfully, Graham had this covered for me and has kindly provided me with the footage that goes along with this record, so I hereby offer my thanks and salutations to this mighty and puissant stalwart of metal. The man is a fucking legend…
So, yeah, this is a live recording of Graham and the guys (and gal. Oh, Beth-Ami, be mine. Even your name is perfect. My twisted, shrivelled black heart beats only for you, my proud beauty… sigh) playing some of the more unusual and rare tunes from his days with Alcatrazz, MSG, Impellitteri and Rainbow as well as his stuff with the Graham Bonnet Band. And fuck me crossways, this is good…
I’d even go as far as to say this is fucking classic. This is how metal should sound in the live setting. Alright it’s as Trad Metal as it gets, but nothing touches Trad Metal for riffs and hooks and anthemic choruses. Metal’s most famous accountant’s haircut has assembled a band of uncommonly high talent and it shows through in every single sublime guitar lick from Conrado Pesinato (complete with array of highly amusing guitar solo faces), in Mark Benquchea’s ultra-metronomic drumming (complete with array of highly amusing focused drummer faces) and the legendary Jimmy Waldo hitting the keys like a man possessed (I really don’t want to talk about his face). At the front of it all there’s the Skeggy Boy. A man in command of himself, and his audience! A living legend at the fucking greatest, mightiest height of his powers! A man that makes Corey Taylor look like an amateurish fucking chancer who shouts a lot! A man who demands your attention and your loyalty, and does it so effortlessly you don’t even notice yourself falling to your knees and offering supplication in the form of opening your own veins and spilling your lifeblood at his impeccably shod feet…
And then there is the fragrant, beautiful, heart stopping Beth-Ami Heavenstone. A woman so perfect my heart breaks every time I even look at her. Dark Juan lost his soul to her years ago, but she never even noticed such is the level of her perfection. An angel on Earth with a bass guitar and a smile that makes this hellpriest nearly believe in God. A woman of such magnificence, she makes every other woman within 500 yards of her utterly insignificant. I am not worthy of her attention… No one is, so how did that Lincolnshire howler do it? The absolute bastard! I’ll find out. I will fucking find out and then I’ll bottle it and go and find her…
Sorry, I might have slightly digressed. Yes, the record. Oh my fucking god, the record. This is the best live album I have ever heard. There is not a dropped note in the entire performance and Graham is absolutely at the peak of his powers, effortlessly soaring through his vocal range and reminding us all just what a mighty influence he has been for decades. He looks and sounds like he is enjoying the fuck out of what he is doing and that is infectious. Even I, a notoriously hard and critical man to please with music, have been caterwauling along with every single chorus of every single song. Hodgson Fartpants (one of Dark Juan’s Hellhounds. So named because I could make a fortune out of renting him to dodgy Middle Eastern regimes for chemical warfare purposes…) immediately showed his displeasure with my off key shrieking by fucking off upstairs and going to sleep on my pillows. Plus, the man is a genius level songwriter. Not so much for content, but for the ease with which he crafts such exquisite choruses. You only have to hear Night Games or Samurai once to understand what I’m talking about. And another thing while I am frothing with such incredible enthusiasm… the backing vocals! The harmonies! Oh, the motherfucking harmonies. They hit you at the base of your spine.
And the utterly desirable and simply jawdropping Beth-Ami Heavenstone (have I told you how amazing she is yet? No? How remiss of me) has a gutwrenchingly sweet alto that reduced me to a quivering mass of pathetically lovestruck goo within seconds of her singing the backing vocal to the chorus of S.O.S. There are some voices that give you goosebumps. She has one, on top of all her other sublime qualities. WHAT DO I HAVE TO DO TO MAKE YOU NOTICE YOUR MOST ARDENT ADMIRER, BETH-AMI? TELL ME, TELL ME, I IMPLORE! NOTICE ME, SENPAI, NOTICE ME!
I don’t know about you, but I’m going to need to take a cold shower in Antarctica after this one, boys and girls.
…As we wrench ourselves back into the business of actually being useful to you readers and telling you about the record, then. The production and sound quality are far beyond adequate. Every instrument and cymbal is easily heard and the lead vocal, although to the fore of the mix, is not overpowering the rest of the music. The backing vocals are similarly high in the mix but again are not blanketing the instruments. The song choices for this gig are equally inspired. Everything from the ultra-classic Since You’ve Been Gone through to MSG’s Dancer through to the absolute highlight of the record – an extraordinarily sleazy, sexual, filthily orgasmic rendition of All Night Long! The record ends, somewhat bizarrely, with an alternate lyric studio version of The Crying Chair, which, although interesting and a damned fine rock and roll record, jars somewhat with the fucking awesome night we have just had listening to Graham fucking Bonnet live. Yes, I know I am swearing a lot. No, I don’t care. I am expressing joy. Fuck you. It seems like it was almost bunged on there as an afterthought, you know? Kind of like that last sentence!
Ladies, gentlemen and people of all other genders (I’m nothing if not inclusive. I hate everyone equally) we have on our hands here a perfect storm of a live album – superbly played by the musicians, sublime lead vocals from a living metal legend, well produced, well mixed, with inspired song choices, the biggest ever choruses in metal, and Beth-Ami Heavenstone. Have I told you how much she turns me into a quivering schoolboy every time I set eyes on her? How my heart does little flip flops as I gaze at her magnificent bass playing prowess? How I wish those long, elegant fingers were touching me and her cool gaze and tinkling laugh were for my eyes and ears only? No? We could be here for some time, then….
The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System is cross-eyed with desire right now and actually really needs to take a shower in liquid nitrogen, but has struggled manfully on to award the Graham Bonnet Band 10/10 for an utterly fucking brilliant live record. It really should be like 150/10. It is the finest live album I have ever heard. And Graham Bonnet is a musical hero of mine. And Beth-Ami, I adore you.
TRACKLISTING:
01. Eyes Of The World
02. California Air
03. S.O.S.
04. Night Games
05. Stand In Line
06. Into The Night
07. Love’s No Friend
08. Dancer
09. Samurai
10. Desert Song
11. Rider
12. Since You’ve Been Gone
13. Assault Attack
14. All Night Long
15. Lost In Hollywood
16. The Crying Chair (Intended Lyric Version)
LINE-UP:
Graham Bonnet – Vocals
Conrado Pesinato – Guitar
Beth-Ami Heavenstone – Bass (You’re going to be hearing quite a lot about her. Sorry, not sorry.)
Jimmy Waldo – Keyboards
Mark Benquchea – Drums
LINKS:
https://www.alcatrazzofficial.com/
https://www.facebook.com/grahambonnetmusic/



https://www.youtube.com/user/GrahamBonnetHimself
 
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.

The Three Tremors – The Three Tremors

the three tremors cover

The Three Tremors – The Three Tremors
Steel Cartel
Release Date: 18/01/2019
Running Time: 58:41
Review by Dawn “The Metal Priestess” King
10/10

I don’t tend to hand out 10 out of 10’s when I am reviewing all that often and there have only been a handful since I first started. Many albums make it to 9 but, for me, an album must have just that little something extra to push it to a 10!

This album certainly has that!

The Three Tremors harnesses three of Earth’s mightiest and relentless voices in heavy metal together as one, producing “one of the all-time great power metal albums” as said by Knac.com

So, who are these three magnificent voices? Well, they are, none other, than Tim “Ripper” Owens (Judas Priest, Iced Earth, Dio’s Disciples), Sean “The Hell Destroyer” Peck (Cage, Denner & Shermann, Death Dealer) and Harry “The Tyrant” Conklin (Jag Panzer, Satan’s Host, Titan Force) and already being massive fans of a lot of their previous bands, I knew I was going to enjoy this one.

The band also features a group of mighty metal veterans from San Diego, the talents of guitarist Dave “Conan” Garcia, with Casey “The Sentinel” Trask as second guitarist and bassist Alex Pickard and drummer Sean Elg completing the line-up.

Sean and Tim originally met in San Diego when Sean’s band Cage opened for Judas Priest on the Jugulator tour and when Sean wanted to resurrect a 2018 version of a vision he had from long ago, Tim agreed straight away, and Harry quickly joined next.

Says Sean: “it took a long time to put together, create the right songs, and get it properly arranged, but the results are beyond my wildest expectations. I think the fans are really going to freak out on what we have done with this record, and live it’s going to be almighty, I assure you!

So, what of the album? Well, according to the press notes it is “12 new tracks that depict monumental stories of time honoured heavy metal themes!” and the artwork has been designed by renowned artist Marc Sasso (Dio, Halford, Adrenaline Mob, Death Dealer, Cage) to “showcase an apocalyptic battle between demonic hyper-wolves and The Three Tremors, who marched into an underworld overshadowed by evil forces only armed with bullets powered by heavy metal sorcery to reclaim the dystopian lands.

In essence, this is a power metal album, with a huge chunk of traditional and heavy metal thrown in, and what an album!

Mixing together three of metal’s finest vocalists into one mighty sonic power might have seemed a bit of a risky move. How would they work together? Would one overpower the others? Would they all fight for supremacy?

The answer was a resounding success. All three singers feature on every track and they all work so well together. One minute you think you are listening to Judas Priest, the next Cage or Death Dealer. The multiple vocalists give the songs depth, almost bringing them to life. There are no egos with the singers either. Each one is a fantastic singer in his own right, the breadth of each of their history’s testament to that, but one voice is not trying to fight to be above the others and each singer is on par with the rest.

But a band wouldn’t be a band without the musicians. Based on the Cage line-up, these guys are immense. The two guitarists play well together, and with riffs and solos galore, they are easily the hidden gems of the band. The rhythm section of the bass and drums are tight, and they do their job to perfection, although the drumming is insane at times!!

For a group of musicians who have really only been together for such a short period of time, they shouldn’t be as good as they are!! Bands that have been together for longer do not sound as polished and finished as these guys do!

I said at the start of this review that to get a 10 from me a band needed that little bit extra, and I think what gives this album that oomph is the experience the band members have. But, please, do not take my word for it. Go and get yourself a copy of this awesome album and see for yourself. If you are not blown away by it, then I will eat my hat!

I can’t wait for these guys to tour and once they do, I hope they venture to this side of the Atlantic!

“Three times louder than a sonic boom, three fingers on the hand of doom.”

TRACKLISTING:
01. Invaders From The Sky
02. Bullets For The Damned
03. When The Last Scream Fades
04. Wrath Of Asgard
05. The Cause
06. King Of The Monsters
07. The Pit Shows No Mercy
08. Sonic Suicide
09. Fly Or Die
10. Lust Of The Blade
11. Speed To Burn
12. The Three Tremors (bonus track)

LINKS:

promo pic1

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dawn “The Metal Priestess” 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.

Krull – The Black Coast

Krull The Black Coast Cover Art

Krull – The Black Coast
Iron Shield Records
Release date: 27/04/2018
Running Time: 42.32
Review by: Alun Jones
6/10

KRULL! Did you ever see the movie? It’s GREAT! On the ancient world of Krull, Prince Colwyn brings together a band of scoundrels to help him rescue Princess Lyssa from the clutches of the evil Beast, who threatens to conquer the planet. It’s a sci-fi fantasy adventure with a Cyclops, cool weapons, vile baddies, Tucker Jenkins and Lysette Anthony. I mean seriously, you need to see this film. How metal does it sound? Even the bad guys are called “Slayers”!

The band Krull occupy a musical space which is openly very inspired by fantasy, battles and all things sword and sorcery. And right from the off, it’s a whole lot of fun. The atmospheric intro “In the Woods” grabs the listener and plunges them into the ethereal world that Krull have concocted, and it’s pretty much full on from there.

Pace-wise, “The Black Coast” is like riding shotgun in a barbarian’s chariot, charging an army of Orcs. Stand out tracks for me included “By Steel” and “The King and the Sword”, but the whole album is energetic traditional metal. If you’re a fan of Priest, Maiden and the mighty Manowar you’ll find something to enjoy here. Only midway track “Valhalla” slows things down a little, otherwise it’s a fast and brutal campaign.

So why only 6 out of 10? Well there are lots of plus points with this album. The vocals are suitably bonkers, ranging from powerful cries, deep growls to a high pitched, witchy cacophony. The musicianship is great, and the rhythm section successfully keep the march relentless. The songs are fast and filled with fantastic tales of battles and bravery.

But the guitar tone was just off for me. I like something with more crunch; more skull smashing intensity. After the cool intro, first track “The Witch”, whilst a great song, suffers from a languid guitar sound that slices the records hamstrings before the fight is really on.

Don’t misunderstand me, the playing is great – it’s the production that’s slightly lacking. The guitars should be much more axe in the face, blood and brains everywhere.

There’s still a lot to recommend Krull’s “The Black Coast” though. Especially if you dig your metal as a soundtrack to a rampaging berserker, attacking a horde of evil ghouls.

Oh, and get down to your local Blockbuster and rent the Krull video. You won’t regret it. It makes Lord of the Rings look like a bad Dungeons and Dragons game in a crack den…!

TRACKLISTING:
01. In the Woods – Intro
02. The Witch
03. By Steel
04. Marching to Mountains
05. Valhalla
06. The King and the Sword
07. Immortals
08. Stand fight to Kill
09. The Black Coast

LINKS:

Krull Promo Pic

Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Alun Jones 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.