Thursday, October 30, 2014

CD Review: New Debut Albums From Underground Rockers Lock City Thieves, Hold/Transfer And Anton Vezuv

Returning with new music is the Connecticut band, Lock City Thieves (formerly known as BoneThrower). Their new four-song EP entitled "The Devil And Bad Decisions" shows a maturity in the band's songwriting, while still maintaining that raw, hard rock sound as displayed in the two-minute attention getter "DIY." The Lock City Thieves find a White Stripes-style of bluesy grunge rock on the exciting "Slept With The Devils," before closing with the nearly seven-minute classic metal sounds of "Prime." The band has only one show on their schedule at the moment for November 6th at The Fez in Stamford, CT. To find out more about their new album "The Devil And Bad Decisions," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/thelockcitythieves.

From Boston, MA comes the self-titled debut release from Hold/Transfer. The new thirteen-song album begins with the uptempo, alternative rock instrumental "New Strangers," which is a great introduction to the band. Their sound takes on a more art/pop rock feel to their music with the concise delivery of "Hang Tight And Wait" and "Nerves On The Big Occasion," before experimenting more on "Hissfits." The music explodes with the grunge guitar introduction of "Branton" as the energy finally picks up. Hold/Transfer head toward the mainstream with the mellow, alternative sound of "Let's Do It Anyway," before closing the album with slow-moving monotone feel of "Spoken For." To find out more about Hold/Transfer, please visit the band's Facebook page at facebook.com/holdtransfer.

From Budapest, Hungry comes the debut album from alternative rock band Anton Vezuv entitled "Into The Sea." The new twelve-song release begins with the up-tempo pop/rock of "Far Camp Song" that features an attractive rhythm that easily draws you in. They slow down for a "Moment Of Bliss" that builds to an amazing close along with the gentle flow of "Mr. Horsefly," and the softness of "I'm Sorry," which really showcases the band's exceptional songwriting. The album closes with the slow sway of "Say Something." To find out more about Anton Vezuv, please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/antonvezuv.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

CD Review: New Independent Metal Music From Fit For A King, Arabrot & MoE

From Texas comes the latest release from the Christian metal band Fit For A King entitled "Slave To Nothing." The band's last album "Creation/Destruction" debuted at #3 on the Billboard "Heatseekers" chart and their latest album is looking to capitalize on that success. The new eleven-song release begins with the adrenaline-fueled "Kill The Pain" that has the band sounding as good as ever, while the dark subject matter of "Young & Undeserving" has a more mainstream metal appeal. The screaming vocals of Ryan Kirby and the harmonies of the chorus gives "Break Away" a roller coaster effect to the song's momentum. One of the album's first singles "A Great Sense Of Self" hits you right in the teeth with its fast-paced rhythm and aggressive vocals. Fit For A King look to "Cleanse My Soul" from the evilness heard within song, before slowing the tempo down to appeal to a more general audience with "The Final Thoughts Of A Dying Man." To find out more about Fit For A King and their new album "Slave To Nothing," please visit fitforakingband.com.

From Norway comes two new releases through Fysisk Format Records from the bands Arabrot and MoE. Arabot's new album entitled "I Modi" features six hard-hitting songs that have a hardcore metal sound laid out by an aggressive vocal delivery and bashing rhythms. The album attacks religion and looks to gather more followers with its eerie, but majestic music and thought-provoking lyrics. MoE on the other hand delivers a drugging doom metal sound with moments of punk-like furry. The trio look to mesmerize you with their music and draw you in with their vocals. To find out more about Arabrot, please visit arabrot.com. To find out more about MoE, please visit facebook.com/moepages.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

CD Review: Metal Blade Records Heats Things Up With Some New Releases

British hardcore metal duo Anaal Nathrakh have a new album coming out on October 28th entitled "Desideratum" on Metal Blade Records. Their last album "Vanitas" appeared on many "best of 2012" metal album charts, so the new release has a tall act to follow. The original plan of the band was to create music for the soundtrack of Armadeddon and they definitely achieved that with this latest album. The new eleven-song release begins with the explosive blast of energy in "Acheronta Movebimus" and doesn't quit until the final notes of "Ita Mori." They electrify their sound with the fast-paced drumming of "Monstrum In Animo" and give us some hardcore industrial metal with the electronic feel of "The One Thing Needful." The album continues with the screaming vocals of "Idol" and the live setting of the aggressive "Rage And Red," before closing with guitar shredding solos of "Ita Mori." To find out more about Anaal Nathrakh and their latest release "Desideratum," please visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/Anaalnathrakhofficial.
 
Also out on October 28th is the latest release from Vesania entitled "Deus Ex Machina." It is the band's first new album in seven years and carries the theme of "a cheap solution in a poorly written script or novel." The ten tracks that make up the album tell dark tales beginning with the storied lyrics of "Halflight" as the music adds to the song's intensity. The band plays around with tempos during "Innocence," then attacks the vocals of "Vortex" with reckless abandonment as the music follows suit. The band's symphonic metal side comes through on the grand "Notion" with screaming vocals and adrenalized music, before Vesania finish with the final guitar-fueled onslaught of "Scar." To find out more about Vesania and their latest release "Deus Ex Machina," please visit vesania.pl.
 
Coming out in November from Metal Blade Records are new albums from Job For A Cowboy and Downfall Of Gaia. The new album from the American death metal band Job For A Cowboy is entitled "Sun Eater" and it will show fans how the band has grown in their songwriting. The band decided to showcase their talents in the studio, allowing everyone within the band to share their ideas and talents of this new material. Songs like "Suns Of Nihility" and "Buried Monuments" show an enormous amount of growth within the band, while "The Synthetic Sea" and "The Celestial Antidote" can still knock you back with the music's sheer aggressive force.To find out more about Job For A Cowboy and their new album "Sun Eater," please visit metalblade.com/jobforacowboy.
 
The new album from the German metal band Downfall Of Gaia is entitled "Aeon Unveils The Thrones Of Decay" and starts off with the nine-minute horror soundtrack "Darkness Inflames These Sapphire Eyes." The band's signature doom metal sound is displayed perfectly in the ten-minutes of "Carved Into Shadows," while they give one last blast of heavy metal adrenaline during the twelve-minute "Whispers Of Aeon." To find out more about the new album from Downfall Of Gaia, please visit metalblade.com/downfallofgaia.

Monday, October 27, 2014

CD Review: Queen Drummer Roger Taylor Releases "Best" Of His Solo Albums

Legendary Queen drummer Roger Taylor had a very successful solo career outside of his bands Queen and The Cross. He released five solo albums, all of which have charted very well in the U.K. His songwriting in Queen is sometimes overshadowed by lead singer Freddie Mercury and guitarist Brian May, but on this new "best of" compilation, we get to fully appreciate his creations on this new release from Omnivore Recordings.
 
The new album "Roger Taylor: best" features eighteen songs from throughout Taylor's solo career, beginning with the early eighties sound of "Future Management (You Don't Need Nobody Else)." The booklet doesn't give much insight into who performed on the songs, but on Roger's debut solo album, he performs all of the instruments himself as you can hear some of Brian May's guitar influence on "I Wanna Testify" and a touch of rockabilly on "Let's Get Crazy." His Queen comrades helped out on Taylor's second solo album "Strange Frontier" as Brian May is featured on the song "Man On Fire," which is included on the compilation. His third album "Happiness?" began with the controversial single "Nazis 1994" as Taylor's sound is still holding on to the eighties synthesizer era. One of Taylor's greatest non-Queen songs is the emotional "Foreign Sand" which he wrote and performed with Japanese musician, Yoshiki. The song "Surrender" shows more depth and experimentation with his sound as he seems renewed with writing this new music. Many of the songs' from his final two albums, 1998's "Electric Fire" and 2013's "Fun On Earth" could have been hit singles with the band Queen as they have that underlining feel of what could have been. The song "The Unblinking Eye" was released in 2009 and shows Taylor's subtle way of writing a protest song that also gives emotion to his music. The album closes with one of Roger Taylor's most touching moments on the 2013 single "Sunny Day."
 
To find out more about this first "best of" compilation from Queen drummer Roger Taylor, please visit omnivorerecordings.com

Sunday, October 26, 2014

CD Review: Richie Kotzen Brings His "Essentials" To Connecticut In November

Guitarist/singer/songwriter Richie Kotzen has release 18 solo albums throughout his 25 year musical career. Not to mention being a member of the rock bands Poison and Mr. Big and currently in the hard rock trio The Winery Dogs. On September 2nd, Loud & Proud Records gathered some of Kotzen's greatest solo efforts and released "The Essential Richie Kotzen" 2CD/DVD set. Kotzen will also be embarking on a solo U.S. tour that kicks off November 1st in Maryland. He will make his way along the east coast, before heading out west in mid-November.

The new two-disc set showcases his more popular fan favorites on the first disc, while the second disc gathers three new recordings, acoustic sessions and demos. He displays his Chris Cornell-type vocal range on the grunge-like rock of "Love Is Blind," while the eight-minute "Fooled Again" has a electrifying guitar solo to close the song. The classic rock appeal of "Help Me" and the bluesy "Bad Situation" show the diversity in Kotzen's songwriting and his guitar duties never disappoint. Kotzen looks for redemption in the scorcher "Save Me," before closing the disc with the slow, raw acoustic blues of "Remember (Reprise)."

The second disc is put together especially for the fans, beginning with three new recordings, including the soft acoustics of "What It" and "Change." Those are followed by five acoustic versions of some of Kotzen's more well-known songs, including his hit with Poison, "Until You Suffer Some (Fire And Ice)." The second disc closes with a piano demo for the song "Regret" and the R&B drum beat of "Damaged." To find out more about this latest new release from Richie Kotzen and about his upcoming U.S. tour, please visit richiekotzen.com.