E.P Review: Rock Goddess- It’s More Than Rock N Roll

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“It’s More Than Rock N Roll” is the brand new E.P by classic Heavy Metal trio Rock Goddess and was released May 19th, 2017. This marks a long comeback for the band since it is their first time releasing new music since their 1987 album “Young and Free”. So after all this time, is the e.p worth the wait? Or do we see a band unfortunately fall flat on the pavement all these years later?

 

Track Rundown

1.It’s More Than Rock N Roll-Opening with some heavy slow drumming with a suspended guitar riff with Jody Turners heavy hitting vocals which are my favorite thing about this ep and the band in general. The vocal work has always been quite strong. Unfortunately this song seems stale to me. It just lacks a lot of creativity mainly in the verses it just lacks a lot of power. The production feels really flat too with he drums sounding too hmm up front I suppose? They sound too shimmery to me. Overall the song has a good chorus and fun solo, but unfortunately it drags too much and lacks a lot of power that you hear on those early records.

2.Back Off- this song has more of a simplistic NWOBHM feel to it mainly in the riffing and I feel the production works a bit more in this songs favor. I do feel the bass could be a bit higher in the mix but this is definitely an improvement over the first song. It isn’t anything mind blowing, but its an alright tune.

3.We’re All Metal- Now this song has those lyrics that I am always a sucker for, no matter how cheesy they are. Those “Metal lives forever” kind of lyrics are always great but the song unfortunately suffers from the same shortcomings as the title track. Although I like where the band were heading with this song, I feel it again lacks a bit of power which mainly is because of the production. It’s another track that is okay but feels somewhat uninspired.

Overall, I give this e.p a 2.5 out of 5. Rock Goddess’s return to the metal world is one that leaves a bit to be desired. The songs although not terrible, lack a lot of staying power and are hindered by a production that seems way too shimmery sounding on the drums and just doesn’t sound as organic as they could. I still hope that the band puts out a full length again at some point but for right now, I feel this e.p is mainly if you are looking to complete a collection or something to put on once in a great while.

Album Review-Tytan: Justice Served!

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“Justice Served!” is the second full length album from legendary British Heavy Metal group Tytan and is to be released May 26th, 2017 via High Roller Records. A little history about Tytan is that they were originally formed by original Angel Witch bassist Kevin Riddles and released their first album “Rough Justice” in 1985. Even though the album was quite good with a heavy but melodic approach, unfortunately the band didn’t make it far and disbanded by the end of the decade. However, with a lot of bands in the same realm making large comebacks, it was clear that Tytan were up to the plate as well. Now finally, 36 years later the band has released their sophomore album, lets see how it stacks up!

Track Rundown

1.intro/Love You To Death-Opening with an atmospheric and very 80’s synthesizer opening, The song gets started with a more hard rocking riff that has some heavy blues influences as well to it. Once the verses come in you get immediately taken back to that classic mid 80’s metal sound with the heavy guitars and melodic vocals soaring over them. It is a very simple tune however it works very well and is a good jam to open the album.

2.Fight The Fight-This song definitely has more of a groove to it with the synths being out front right in the beginning. When the song kicks in it has really heavy feel to it with these fast passages between the verses that bring some real power to the song. The chorus has a really heavy feeling to it and definitely shows the potential for this being a really good live tune.

3.Spitfire-I really love the really upbeat feel of this song especially in the drums with the oldschool bass drums with a fast bluesy yet metal guitar riff. This song is another heavier tune from the band with more emphasis on the heavier groove of the song which I really dig. The solo really kicks ass too its just so frantic. This is one of my favorite tracks on the album easily.

4.Reap The Whirlwind-This song opens with almost a doom metal styled bass line with the guitars coming in with the key boards being more prominent in this song but more as an atmospheric touch. This song has more melody to it with a slower and somewhat more epic feeling pace with a very melodic chorus blended with that heavy guitar riff it works quite well and overall creates a good ominous mid tempo heavy metal tune.

5.Midnight Sun- this song has a more ballad-like feel to it compared to the earlier hard rocking songs as it is entirely acoustic. However, I think that it works as it breaks up the pace of the album a bit. I really admire the vocals they are done very well with some nice soaring highs and mids as well.

6.Forever Gone-This song rolls back into the more heavy metal roots with some cool starts and stops in the beginning with the synths taking over in between the band it really adds a nice touch. The chorus is quite strong as well and has that nwobhm feeling that they had on their first album.

7.Billy Who-I always love when a song opens with classical double bass drumming because you know its going to be a high energy tune and this definitely is. I really admire the solid solo guitars on the album as a whole because they are frantic yet so very on point with a lot of fast notes and whammy bar hits. This is a great instrumental that lets the band kind of show their more progressive side as it has an overall sort of “Rush” feel to it complete with a short but awesome precise drum solo toward the end.

8.Hells Breath- This song has more of a hard rock feel but with some good grooves in it with a very melodic mid section that is very reminiscent of a band like Praying Mantis with the atmosphere and melodic overtones it has which work well between the chanting main chorus.

9.One Last Detail- This tune speeds it up more akin to the earlier songs with a very almost pop-like riff through the verses it almost sounds like it should be in 1974. I almost get reminded of Coverdale-era Deep Purple with this tune and again its done quite well and is pretty catchy.

10.Worthy of Honour- Opening with more acoustics, this song boasts more low yet still melodic vocals to it and they are a nice variation compared to the other songs we have heard so far. It does eventually pick up into a more mid tempo almost 70’s styled hard rock song with an emotional solo as well. It definitely has more of a hard rock feel to it than a more metal feel.

11.The Cradle-Opening with more of those heavy synths the band is know for, the song goes into more for this mid tempo grooving metal song that feels a lot like the earlier mid tempo song with a lot of melody blended with the heavier riffing style. It does pick up into a fast chugging metal tune toward the middle and eventually ends with the band giving it all that they have.This is a good closing tune and reminds me of Tony Martin era Sabbath which is never a bad thing!

Overall, I give the album a strong 7.5 out of 10. Tytan do a very good job with blending the harsher heavy metal style of their counterparts but still retaining a more hard rock tone especially with the added melodies which the band in the first place were looking to accomplish. As a follow up thirty some years later, “Justice Served!” shows that Tytan are a band that still play tight as ever and finally have come back to deliver a solid album all NWOBHM fans will enjoy and then some.

Album Review: Critical Solution- Barbara The Witch

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“Barbara The Witch” is the third studio album from Norwegian Thrash Metal group Critical Solution and is to be released April 28th, 2017. Ah Critical Solution are a band that I’ve been wanting to check out for awhile. I heard their first release a few years ago and noted the strong especially 90s era Metallica influences in the vocals which were pretty cool and I thought the band definitely had chops. However I havent checked them out on awhile so I figure this album will be a perfect reintroduction to the band. So lets see if the band has evolved in the past few years!

Track Rundown

1.Natas Fo Live-Opening with a very moody Gothic instrumental, I think this sets the tone well and is very King Diamond-esque in its approach but I dig it. There is a narration done by Arthur Brown which is pretty bad ass as well it is something you really don’t expect. I really think that it really ramps up the real opening song as well.

2.The Village-This song gets started in a very old school thrash kind of way in both the instruments and vocals. There are a oot of differing tempos and changes in the song that work very well and the vocals definitely fit great and have a bit of a punk feel to them as well. The band are really tight here as well and I dig the organ right in the middle of the song as well it again gives more of a theatric feel in the break of them song before the solo. Overall this is a great opener it really shows that this band can still play damn good.

3.Barbara The Witch- The first single off the album and it is again very trashy but has a bit of a modern progression to it between the verses. The verses and chorus are pure classic heavy metal and I find are really catchy as well. This is one of my favorites on the album as well it just really sticks with you.

4.Red Hooded Devils-I like the ominous opening on this track it is very atmospheric and changes up the pace a bit. The soft guitars are a nice inclusion as well and work quite nicely. However, when the song hits it really hits and definitely is one of the most epic songs on the album with speed being the main focus. It is a bit more simplified than the last two tracks but the chorus is really good as it has this haunting feel to it within it’s progression. The slower mid parts are pretty cool as well and adds more to the song than just to the beginning as well. Not a bad tune and one of the more well thought out songs on the album.

5.Peter Crow-This is another favorite on the album for me because the guitar lines are very Maiden-ish and work very well with the heavier chugging moments. The chorus is a lot more mid paced and has that epic notion about it with the more soaring vocals that dont tip above mid range but still feel very epic. The song goes in a lot of different directions with speed and starts and stops and is really interesting overall.

6.The Burning Pyre-This song opens more softly as well with some acoustic guitars that are really nice yet ominous as well which goes right into more heavy kind of marching beats and then…more narration from Arthur Brown. I think the narration was a nice inclusion here as well. This song has a bit more of a groove to it as well and shows a bit more of those Metallica influences in places as well. Overall, the song hits very well and keeps you banging your head all the way through with some interesting surprises throughout as well.

7.End of the Beginning-this is track is overall more narration and the album definitely shows its conceptual side very heavily but I dont mind because it adds to the interesting qualities of the record as a whole.

8.The Headless Horsemen-This is one of the fastest songs on the album and is all around just pure classic speed metal at its core and I love it. The band manages to play as fast as Anthrax in their hey day and still keeps the melody between the guitars quite well. The song does have some soft moments that lead back into these epic solo’s that are some of the best and most memorable on the album.

9.Officer Green-I love the heavier palm muted chugging on this song it grooves really well however it is really a more straightforward thrash song for the most part but still has that dark kind of progression that the band really knows how to do. Overall this is another juggernaut of a thrash song.

10.A Lady In White-This is definitely the most mid paced song on the album with a lot of guitar melodies in the core of the song but is overall a very straight forward soft atmospheric instrumental that may be a bit too long but isn’t bad.

11.Return Of The Witch- The previous track leads perfectly into this song which has a very testament feel in its progression but still has Critical Solution putting their own stamp on the sound especially with the the more unique vocals. This is definitely one of the most catchy songs on the album by far as well. The band really fire on all cylinders here for the final stretch.

12.Into The Abyss-This simple final narrative piece is what ends the main album and definitely is very dark in tone and ends the album quite well.

Overall, I give this album a solid 8 out of 10. Really for a band that has been around for just over ten years, I think Critical Solution are finally finding their own unique sound. They manage to craft these bad ass neck ripping thrash metal songs that have some modern and old school influences that blend well but also inject all theses theatrical bit and more atmospheric breaks in their songs that keep them quite interesting. This is an album that I think oldschool and newschool metal fans could enjoy. Also if this album sounds like your kind of thing, grab the special two cd edition with a second disc of covers from Ozzy, King Diamond, Black Sabbath and others entitled “Covers From Hell” it definitely is a nice treat with an alright great release from a band that really needs to start taking off, this is a band that deserves to be touring the world right now.

Album Review: Mythra- Still Burning

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“Still Burning” is the debut album from legendary cult New Wave Of British Heavy Metal group Mythra and is to be released April 28th, 2017. Now to date, Mythra have only released their EP entitled “Death and Destiny” which has been a key release in the genre almost as much as Angel Witch’s first album or a few others. They also had an anthology come out last year via SKOL Records which was a compilation of rare recordings from the band. The band in the past few years has been quite active and have always had a steady group of dedicated fans as well. Now finally we get a full length from them over thirty years after forming. Will we see an album that is an absolutely great debut? Lets find out!

Track Rundown

1.Still Burning- Opening with the title track, the album opens fairly strong with a really punchy and raw riff hitting you right in the face. Vince High still really has that good grit to his voice that wouldn’t be out of place in 1982 and I love it. The production is also not too glossy either with every instrument being mixed nearly perfectly. The chorus is also quite catchy as well. This is prime early NWOBHM in 2017 and really gets you excited to hear the rest of the album. The solo even sounds like it came from 1980 with the vintage guitar harmonies really making their mark.

2.Call To All- This tune has a bit more melody but has amazing hooks to it especially in the chorus it almost sounds a bit like early diamond head. This is one of my favorites on the album because its one of those great classic sounding metal tracks that just gets stuck in your head.

3.That Special Feeling- This tune is full on melody right from the get go and is similar to the last song with just how catchy it is and I love it. I’ve had this album on repeat the past few days and the songs really do stick especially at a loud volume because you can really feel the double bass drums during the chorus. This is just classic metal done by a band that finally overcame everything and you can definitely hear that they are playing their hearts out on this album.

4.Ride The Storm- This song opens with more melodic guitars but is different enough especially in the progression to stick out than just a similar tune to the last. I really like how Vince really belts the vocals out here and shows why he is one of my favorite NWOBHM singers because he sounds just as good as he does on their early recordings. Overall, this is another very consistent tune on the album.

5.Survival- This song has more of a progressive kind of gallop to it and for some reason it reminds me of a bit of 80’s Ted Nugent with Ozzy’s back up band playing. I dont know why but it made me think of that. I really like the verses of this song they are just so damn powerful with the thumping bass just forcing you to bang your head. I also like that the drums are a bit more interesting in this song and are played very solid too. Not a bad tune at all another heavy hitter.

6.Battle Cry- I dig how this song builds at the beginning and makes me impressed how the band up to this point have just been playing ear splitting heavy metal and some records you eventually get a bit bored but here you accept every tune because they are all executed very well. They all have hooks different from one another and are played with just massive power. I really dig the solo in this song for some reason its one of my favorites on the album.

7.Silence In The Sirens- This tune took me a few listens to really get into Im not sure why but I think it was because the chorus just has this interesting riff that you don’t really expected However, the solo really picks it back up and absolutely screams early maiden and I think the tune still shows great chemistry for the band I just think it is one that may take a few listens to really get into. Again, not a bad tune but one that I had to warm up to a bit.

8.Sands Of Time- This tune slows it down a bit and opens with some cleaner guitars and softer vocals which go right into early speed metal that is done in good taste. It is another tune that has great hooks and fantastic vocal melodies through out as well.

9.Victory Song- This tune has more of a mid pace to it that reminds me of Dio for some reason with a bit of 80’s Priest. It is pretty heavy and quick a fun listen as well with a grooving solo in there too. Not a bad tune it definitely jams.

10.This is definitely the softest tune on the album and I love it. I t has great atmosphere with a hard hitting chorus that definitely fits and still retains that heavy metal feel of the song. This is definitely the most epic song here as well.

11.Fundamental Extreme- The final tune on this heavy metal monster and it has hooks galore with some awesome sing along chorus parts and some catchy verses as well. I think it is a fitting closing to the album and keeps you headbanging all the way to the end.

Overall, this album gets a 9 out of 10. This is easily one of the best albums of the year. Mythra have finally released their first album and it sounds just like it could have came out back in 1980. The band is absolutely on fire and although variety isn’t something album really shows, it shows that heavy metal is still very much alive and is being done just as good as the new bands today, hell probably even better.

Rhino Bucket to release new album entitled “The Last Real Rock N Roll” April 21st

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Announced just awhile ago on Acetate records website, AC DC-fueled rockers Rhino Bucket are set to release their next studio album on April 21 st! The album entitled “Last Real Rock N Roll” is expected to give us all the boogie rock goodness that Rhino Bucket have always delivered. This album comes after 2011’s “Who’s Got Mine” so it is definitely going to be an amazing return fro this band. You can hear the blistering new track entitled “Hello Citizens ” below!