Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Bludvera Demo Review!

First off I'll give everyone who hasn't heard of Bludvera before some background information. They are a five piece straight out of the UK who play a brand of thrash that sounds similar to Metallica and Slayer in the riff writing but a little heavier towards Kreator and Sodom (Vocals especially). Anyway I had the pleasure of reviewing their demo, so let's get to it!

Tools of Bloodshed - The opener to this four track demo and it starts off with a really cool clean intro that turns into some heavy, thrashing goodness! The verse moves along quite well and then it speeds up for the bridge to go into the chorus that keeps the listener wanting more. The song ends with a heavy outro as the gang vocals end the track. A very solid opening song. 4.5/5.

Maniac - This song opens up with a very nice riff that eventually turns into the verse of the song. After the verse you get this awesome, catchy riff that keeps your headbanging. The song features some very well executed tempo changes and continues the trend of great songs on this demo. 4.5/5.

Total Recall - My personal favorite track off of the demo. The title alone just screams awesome as it is based off of the movie with Arnold Swhartzenneger. This flies right out of the gate from the very beginning with an amazing riff that could've been written by Tommy Baron himself. The song also has a nice thrash breakdown midway and even features a sort of Death Metal-like riff near the end. Overall a brilliant song. 5/5.

Submerged by Death - A great way to end the demo with a raging thrasher of a track with the catchiest chorus on the entire demo. 4.5/5.

There you have it folks, Bludvera means business and delivers the best demo that I've heard all year and poses the question... Why is it that Evile is signed and not Bludvera?? Anyway that's all for today folks and until next time peace.

Final Rating - 4.6/5 or 92%.

Official facebook for Bludvera -

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Interview with Michael Stutzer of ARTILLERY!

Recently I reviewed Artillery's latest offering "My Blood" and I thoroughly enjoyed the album. I've always been a huge fan of Artillery and I worship the masterpiece that is "By Inheritance." Anyway, I got in touch with one of the founding members of Artillery, Michael Stutzer, and had the pleasure of interviewing him. Hopefully you guys enjoy it!

SFM - I figured we would start this interview by talking about the new Artillery album "My Blood." How has the feedback for this album been thus far?

Michael - people who think you should have done this or that instead. But as a band we are satisfied!

SFM -I know I definitely enjoyed it and many others who enjoyed it as well, so you guys definitely accomplished that task! Who wrote the lyrics for this record? Did everyone contribute to the lyrics or was it mainly done by just one person?

Michael - The lyrics were done by Søren but we all came up with ideas for subjects etc!

SFM - Are there any plans to tour in support of this album in 2011? Possibly some shows in the United States?

Michael - There are a lot of plans right now and we will work hard to come to the US this time. So I hope we can do it!

SFM - I hope you guys can find a way to make it over here, I would love to see you guys play. Now looking back, it's already been 21 years since Artilllery released the absolute classic album that is "By Inheritance." Even after all of these years it is still cherished around the metal community and heralded as one of thrash's premier releases. How does it feel to know that something you wrote over 20 years ago is still relevant and great today?

Michael - It´s a great honor that people still remember this album and i think My blood is closer to By Inherritance that When Death Comes was! I hope people can hear this!

SFM - There are definitely some elements of By Inheritance, especially in those unique riffs that you're famous for! How has it been to play in a band and tour the world over for the past 29 years with your brother by your side? Would the experience had been different if it was just some random person who auditioned to be in the band and got the spot?

Michael - Yeah maybe its hard to say but we have a good releationship and most of the time we can agree on things.

SFM - How has Soren Adamsen been doing since joining the band? Filling the shoes of someone like Flemming is not an easy thing to do by any means, but he has done a fantastic job thus far.

Michael - Søren is not only a great singer but also a good friend and with him we can tour a lot more than we used to do!
SFM - That's definitely a plus. I recently spoke with Soren Crawack of Denmark's Impalers and he claims you guys have been really helpful with them. Do you have any words of wisdom for other young bands out there?

Michael - Work hard. Try to be original and keep your feet on the ground! Play live as much as you can and be yourself!

SFM - I'd like to thank you for your time and letting me interview you. Do you have any words for your fans?

Michael - Thanks for giving us all that fun to play for you and hope to see you soon on the road! Cheers!

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Onslaught - Sounds of Violence

Wow... I did not expect this album to sound the way that it sounded, hence the reason this review is being labeled HOLY SHIT... part II. This album isn't as good as Onslaught's masterful "The Force" but it is fantastic nonetheless and I think it's Onslaught's second best effort. (Awaits for the severe disagreement). This album is dark, heavy, and fast, and how an album by an older thrash band should write their music. This album is definitely a good contender for the best 21st century thrash album by an 80's band, with it's only real competition being Destruction's The Antichrist and Sodom's M-16. Anyway, enough of the mushy talk, let's review this beast.

Born for War - We open up this album with the track "Born for War." Nothing really special about the title but when that heavy intro opens up the album and turns into a nice thrashy tune it doesn't matter one bit. This song's got cool riffs, vocals, drumming and all around a great song. A very nice way to open the album. 5/5.

The Sound of Violence - The title track of this album features some of that dark atmosphere I was talking about. It's heavy and got some solid riffs and solos. Another great song. 4.5/5.

Code Black - Another dark/heavy intro. This song continues the similar trend as the songs before it but not quite as good as the first two, but still quite good. 4/5.

Rest in Pieces - A cool drum intro that flies into a thrashy riff and the song continues to pummel the listener throughout. There isn't really much to talk about song wise, it's just a really nice thrasher. 4.5/5.

Godhead - This track opens with a weird kind of riff with a small solo that goes over it and then it gets into a nice verse followed by the bridge into a decent chorus. There's a nice dark melody and a breakdown that follow all of this that make a very solid song overall. 4/5.

Hatebox - I honestly laughed at this title because it sounded like some kind of gothic toy, but don't let the name fool you, this is probably the best song off of the album. It had me headbanging throughout and utilized tempo changes very well. 5/5.

Antitheist - A nice dark intro that is followed up by a lot of heaviness and catchy vocal parts. Another really well written song from the English metallers. 4.5/5.

Suicideology - This song opens with a pretty cool melody that fires into a ripping thrash riff and continues it's awesomeness throughout. A very nice way to end the album. 4.5/5.

There wasn't a bad track on this album nor was there just an average track. This album reminded me of modern Sodom... but better. I realize I was a little late reviewing this album but better late than never right? So far 2011 has been pretty good to us metal fans with only one bad release, a few really solid albums, and two fantastic albums those being Havok's "Time is Up" and this album. Anyway I enjoyed this album and I hope you guys all enjoy and until next time peace.

Final rating - 4.5/5 or 90%.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Havok - Time Is Up

First of all the reason for the "HOLY SHIT" remark in the title is because this album is downright amazing. Havok is not fucking around and they proved it with this record. I remember listening to "Burn" when it came out and I remember liking a few songs but the rest was just meh, but this album is the complete opposite. They improved everywhere. There's more intensity, heavier and faster riffs, better solos and harmonies, and better songwriting overall. This album completely shits all over Burn and should be in the same ranks as Warbringer's masterpiece "Waking into Nightmares" and Violator's "Chemical Assault." Anywho... It's review time, and apparently Time is Up! (I apologize for that terrible joke).

Prepare for Attack - How do you kick off a thrash album? Like this, badass drum intro with heavy guitars, then you get into the really thrashy stuff. This song has some fantastic transitions and solos to go with the great riffs. Very solid song indeed. 4.5/5.

Fatal Intervention - This song opens up with a very cool riff and then flies into another thrash riff which becomes the verse. There are some nice harmonies present again and a sweet breakdown. Another solid song. 4.5/5.

No Amnesty - Next up is No Amnesty. This song rages from the beginning and does not stop. it's heavy and fast and extremely catchy. 5/5.

D.O.A. - A cool melodic solo/harmony intro to change things up a bit and then it gets into a melodic thrash riff similar to something by HeXeN. The most melodic song on the album but it eventually turns into a full-on mosher halfway through and hits you like a brick across the face. 5/5.

Covering Fire - A straightforward thrash song with catchy riffs, a nice breakdown and great guitar work. 4.0/5.

Killing Tendencies - Probably the heaviest track on this album. It's got a heavy verse, some nice transitions from the verse to the chorus, a cool breakdown, and some great harmonies/melodies. 5/5.

Scumbag in Disguise - Unlike the preceding track this is probably the most technical track (when it comes to the riffs). Some catchy technical riffs that are thrown over the top with the insane drumming on this track. It also features the most unique solo on the record as it pertains more to rock than metal. A fantastic song yet again from the Colorado thrashers. 5/5.

The Cleric - Now it's time for the darkest track on the album. it's got a nice intro riff with a dark kind of melody to go with it. There's some heavy riffs with some more darkish melodies and some brilliant tempo changes. 5/5.

Out of My Way - Nothing too overly special here, but it remains a pretty cool straightforward thrasher that just hits you with fast riffs and pummeling drum tracks. 4.0/5.

Time is Up - And we end the album with the title track. A nice intro featuring the drums and bass only to soon welcome the guitar as it gradually builds up to the eventual thrash riff and a nice little bass noodle (similar to the infamous one of Megadeth's "Take No Prisoners). Overall a really good song. 4.0/5.

Well I'm now officially jumping on the "Havok is awesome" bandwagon. I originally wrote them off as another typical retro-thrash band being lost in the heap of others but "Time is Up" completely changed that for me, and if you were in a similar predicament as I was, I urge you... NO... I'm demanding you check this album out because it will DESTROY YOU.

Go like 'em on facebook!


Final rating - 4.6/5 or 92%.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Interview with Paul Speckmann of Death Metal legends MASTER!

No offense to anyone that I've interviewed in the past but this interview was definitely a great opportunity for me and I'm glad that I was able to interview this man, as I'm a HUGE fan of Master. In this interview Paul Speckmann talks about the recent cancellation of the North American tour, the early days of Master, and current plans for the band. Anyway here's the interview and I hope you guys enjoy it as much as I did.

SFM - Recently you were forced to cancel your North American tour due to visa issues. Have those issues been resolved and are there any plans to return to North America in 2011?

Paul - Well, yes the governmental control in the USA is beyond belief these days, but on the other hand this is not really a new problem. Back in 1991 I came to the states with Krabathor and they had 10 years visas issued by the the US government and it still took several hours and speaking with me to let the guys in the country. Then again a few years later they were refused entry in the USA due to a small amount of money at the Mexican border. After Dusty Plutz from Texas had his sister wire a 1000 dollars to Mexico then the guys were let in the US. I guess they just don't like Eastern European citizens and they need to collect taxes from musicians to pay for their wars. Hell, it's so important for the USA to be involved in every war and force their democracy on every country. Big brother is getting stronger. It's really sad for all the people and families that suffer when they lose their loved ones in these wars for oil. We may return in March 2012 but it depends if I can find American musicians wiling to play with me again.

SFM - Well that's pretty bad, I know there were a lot of people looking forward to seeing you guys terrorize the States, so hopefully soon you will return. Master is a band that is originally from America. What was the reason(s) for the move to the Czech Republic?

Paul - First of all I was offered a position to play bass for band called Krabathor from the Czech Republic. Of course I took the offer because nothing was really happening for me in America and at that time the US scene was stagnant. I came to Europe for the music scene and have been playing concerts and festivals every year since I came here in 2000. This was the best move for me as I have been working in the music business ever since then.

SFM - That's definitely a good reason to move and continue playing music. Speaking of continuing to play music, your most recent album "The Human Machine" was released last year. How has the feedback been for that album?

Paul - The feedback for the album has been excellent across the globe, it's just that all the illegal downloading makes sales suffer sometimes. Why buy a CD if you can download it for free. This is the attitude of the new younger generation. Of course the diehards purchase CDs so it still works for me, but sales could always be better. Many of the earlier releases will soon be available again on vinyl and people are buying vinyl again myself included. Records just sound better!

SFM - It's good to hear that the fans continue to like music that your putting out after being out for such a long time. Now being originally from Chicago, you guys were forming when Thrash was becoming quite prominent in America. Was Master at any point in it's beginning a thrash band?

Paul - I have never really liked these silly categories. Master has always just played Metal. The subgenres are not important.

SFM - You've definitely always been good at playing metal that's for sure! Now Master has gone through quite a few guitarists and drummers in the past while you've remained the main focal point keeping the band alive. How well has the current line-up been doing?

Paul - The current lineup has been recording and touring together since 2004 and it works, so why fix it? The albums and the band progresses every year with all the live performances as well as the recordings. We will record a new CD in the summer and once again shop for a new contract.

SFM - Are there any tentative plans for a new Master album?

Paul - Yeah we will always continue to record, but let's face it, The Human Machine was just released in 2010 so there really is no hurry at the moment.

SFM - It's good to hear you guys want to continue recording, I'm definitely looking forward to that. Besides working on new material, do you have any major festivals or tours coming up this year?

Paul - We begin the Master tour on April 15th in Berlin and a few festivals in Europe like every year. I just cancelled South America due to too little concerts.

SFM - Well Paul I'd like to thank you for your time, do you have any words for your fans?

Paul - Yes, if you want to hear the real Master then check out the last few CDs. If you are looking for merchandise you can go to Facebook and check it out.
For more info go to master-speckmetal.com

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Intruder Higher Form of Killing Review

I'm back with another review, however I will not be reviewing a newer album as I have recently. Today I will be reviewing an album that I was recommended by an internet buddy, this album of course is Intruder's "Higher Form of Killing." To be honest I wasn't looking forward to this because I had listened to Intruder in the past and didn't find anything all that good but I didn't listen to this monster of an album, and I'm glad that I gave it a chance. Anyway, it's time for the review!

(I'm only rating the actual songs on the album, I'll be omitting the cover song and the two tracks that are just dialogue parts).

The Martyr - The first track on this album, "The Martyr" is a great way to kick off the album. This song is loaded with some great riffs, brilliant tempo changes, and solos out of your arse. The vocals are also great on this track, the singer Jimmy Hamilton could possibly be the lovechild of Tom Araya and Russ Anderson, which is definitely a good combination for a thrash singer. An amazing song to kick off an album? Yes sir, I'll take that anyday. 5/5.

Genectic Genocide - A very nice intro to kcik off the song then it fires into a some fast thrashy goodness. There's a lot of vocal variation on this track and an awesome heavy break midway through the song. It (like all of the other tracks on this album) features some very talented solos. 4.5/5.

Second Chance - One of the more different tracks on this record as it features a clean intro with a lot of melody and some actual "singing." It then turns into a straightforward thrash song that doesn't relent much after that. 4.5/5.

Killing Winds - A kickass drum beat to go along with the heavy chords opens this track and then it gradually gets faster and catchier. The chorus is very memorable and was stuck in my head for quite a while after listening to this album. This song has some AMAZING guitar work when it comes to the solos. This is probably the best song on the entire album. 5/5.

The Sentence is Death - This is probably the darkest song off of the album, from the riffs to the intro, it just has a dark atmosphere. There's also a really cool Kreator-like break midway through the song and the recurring pattern of awesome solos continues on this track. 4.5/5.

Agents of the Dark (M.I.B.) - This song had me headbanging from the get-go. It's got a really catchy chorus, fantastic riffs and of course brilliant solos. 5/5.

Mr. Death - This is probably the funnest track on the record. Very quick and very catchy, what a great mix! It's got a nice break and more SOLOS! A very good way to end the album. 5/5.

So... for my final judgment, I completely regret not giving Intruder another chance sooner, as this is honestly one of the best Thrash albums I've ever heard. It features great vocals, riffs, solos and all around great songwriting in general. What's not to love?! This is definitely an underrated piece of metal that needs more recognition, so if you're reading this and you haven't heard it yet... GO LISTEN TO IT! So, that ends this post for today and until next time peace.

Final Rating - 4.8/5 or 96%.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Interview with Soren Crawack of Impalers

Recently I had the pleasure of interviewing the frontman of Denmark's own Impalers. Impalers are a young and upcoming thrash band that plays in the vein of the great German bands like Kreator and Sodom. They formed in 2007 and released their first demo "Army of Darkness" and have been hard at work on the follow up ever since as well as touring the numerous European venues available to them and having the forturne to open for Thrash legends, Artillery. Now let's here what Soren had to say.

SFM - So Soren, just to give the readers who don't know about Impalers some background, who would you say has influenced your sound the most? Would I be correct to assume that based on the vocals, Sodom is a major influence?

Soren - Yes Sodom is definitely a huge influence, not only concerning vocals but also their music in general. Although we love all kinds of thrash, be it Bay Area, New York or speed metal type thrash, we feel the German teutonic sound is more our style. It's more rough and extreme, often faster and we just really like to play that way live.

SFM - That's great, the German scene is definitely my favorite scene and has spawned some amazing bands but Denmark is also home to an amazing metal band, the legendary technical thrashers, Artillery. Have you ever had the fortune to see them live or even better, open for them?

Soren - I've seen Artillery live about 6 or 7 times and we've had the absolute pleasure of playing with them twice now. They're always a blast to hang out with, and have been really helpful by promoting us, and generally just giving advice. We owe those guys a lot.

SFM - Damn that is awesome, I would love to see Artillery live. Back to Denmark and the metal scene, are there any other up and coming metal bands from Denmark we should know about?

Soren - The big "talk of the town" recently have definitely been Essence. They're a great band with really cool members, we predict a great future for those guys. We also have bands like Battery who are a very cool Exodus kind of band. But Denmark is pretty scarce on thrash bands, and you can pretty much count them on one hand, compared to the hundreds of death metal or core bands that flood the scene.

SFM - Death Metal is always great but I could do without the Core bands. Is there any friendly competition between you and the other metal bands?

Soren - Oh yeah, definitely. We give each other advice and are sure to help get each other on gigs. We listen to a lot of each others stuff too, before everyone else even hears it. Which I think is pretty cool because then you sit there and think "that's a pretty fucking good riff!" and it makes you want to write even better ones. There's a sense of comradery that I really like a lot.

SFM - I understand that you guys just finished a recording for your new demo. When is that planned for release?

Soren - We are, yeah. That will probably be out in early April. We're announcing a release date later this week

SFM - That's very good to hear. Are there any major differneces in the style or overall sound of the music compared to the "Army of Darkness" demo? Is it heavier, faster, slower, etc?

Soren - The new one is way faster! Army of Darkness wasn't really that fast, but it was where our capabilities were at the time. Besides being a lot faster we also feel that it's a bit more aggressive maybe. The production is also way better, and our guitars are actually in tune this time around, haha!

SFM - Well with this release are there any plans for some kind of tour, possibly in Europe?

Soren - There are plans for a tour, which I can't say much about yet. But it will probably be in Scandinavia only this time. But in the fall we're going to start recording our debut album. Combining that with the release of our new demo, which hopefully will get some good response, we hope some doors will open for us to go play and tour places we haven't been before.

SFM - That sounds awesome, I'm definitely looking forward to the new demo and hopefully you guys can find a way to make it to the US! And while we're on the subject of tours, if you could open up for any metal band who would it be?

Soren - Metallica. No questions about it. They're the go-to band and the gateway band for countless bands, musicians and fans of heavy metal music. They're the biggest and the best, simply put. If I were to choose a "smaller" band it would probably be either Sodom or Kreator.

SFM - Metallica would definitely be that band to go to if you want to get your name out to a vast audience... Sodom and Kreator aren't bad choices at all either! And finally, do you have any words for your fans?

Soren - Hope you like the new demo! See you on the road!

There you have it folks. Keep updated with SFM and the Impalers as we will both be tracking the impending release of the new demo. Feel free to check out the Impalers at the following links or like them on facebook and until next time peace.


Monday, March 21, 2011

Razorwyre - Coming Out Review

Razorwyre is a five piece band out of Wellington, New Zealand who plays some blistering, faceripping speed metal, or as they call themselves "Traditional Speed Heavy Metal." They don't even bother trying to reinvent metal at all on this EP, but instead to play as old school as possible in the vein of two of the greatest metal bands to ever strap on a guitar, Judas Priest and Iron Maiden and I'll say they did a pretty good job of doing it. Now for the review.

Party of Five - This track literally screams old school as it opens with a thrashy riff and a primal scream from the singer. The verse and the chorus on this track are pretty good, but the real good stuff comes at the second half of the song when it goes into the cools solos and ends with some really good melodic harmonies. 3.7/5.

Fuck You Tonight - Just looking at this title I immediately think of the glam bands from the Hollywood scene in the 80's and this track is a bit heavier but that sexual lust remains. 3.3/5.

Operation Market Garden - The best track off of the EP. This song just oozes of Judas Priest influences with the awesome harmony riffs, over the top vocals and great solos. 4.5/5.

Suspiria - This song features some good mixture of melody, speed and heaviness and compliments the rest of the songs on the EP quite well, as far as the flow of the album goes. It's even got a cool solo with an outro featuring a galloping riff and sound clips. 3.5/5.

Battleshark - I really dug this track from the start as it had a cool ass intro and gradually took me into the song with a heavier riff that eventually becomes a much faster riff. The song never looks back from there and features some really good riffs halfway through the song and utilizes some brilliant solos over the chorus near the end. 4.0/5.

At first glance I thought that this band was gonna be a typical, generic band that just wanted to play metal they fell in love with but I was close to right as they do play the music that they love but they are far from your typical, generic retro band. They know how to play it right. If I were going to grade this EP just based on solos it probably would've got 100%, I honestly feel that those were the best part of the EP.

Feel free to check them out at the following links and until next time peace.

Final rating - 3.8/5 or 76%.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Amon Amarth - Surtur Rising Review

Amon Amarth has once again delivered with "Surtur Rising", the followup to the magnificent "Twilight of the Thundergod" and I just couldn't wait for the release date of March 29th to listen to this beast (However I will still purchase the album). Amon Amarth has a special quality about them that few bands have, which is retaining their own sound. Anytime one of their songs play, I immediately know it's them, and it's amazing how they do this. Every album they've released is fantastic yet they never really change anything or evolve. They remain Amon Amarth and they remain awesome. Now time to review this beast!

War of the Gods - This was the first track released by the band to promote the album and they made a good choice because it is one of the best tracks on the album. It features good tempo changes, catchy riffs, great vocals and even has a pretty cool solo. A great way to kick off the album. 4.5/5.

Tock's Taunt - Lokes Treachery Part II - The followup to Hermod's Ride to Hell and the much anticipated sequel to the Lokes Treachery saga. This song features some really nice clean guitar parts but also some really heavy parts and more than enough melody to make a near perfect mix. 4.0/5.

Destroyer of the Universe - A great fast opening to the song with some more heaviness to follow as well as some stellar melodic pieces/solos. 4.0/5.

Slaves of Fear - Another track that was released to promote the album and it was a good choice too because it is the best track off of the album, and overall one of their best tracks in general. It doesn't follow the typical lyrical themes of Norse Mythology but of religious lies that make slaves out of their followers. The main riff is very reminiscent of "Holy Diver" which was what actually influenced the riff for the song. 5.0/5.

Live Without Regrets - A nice DM style riff to open the song and a good mixture of heavy riffing and melody that follows. There's a nice melodic break and it ends with some more melody. Definitely one of the most melodic tracks on the record. 3.5/5.

The Last Stand of Frej - This was probably my least favorite track on the album. It just didn't really grab me at all. 3.0/5.

For Victory or Death - A very heavy intro that goes into some melodic guitar parts and variates between the melody and heaviness featured here. There's a pretty catchy chorus and a cool solo as well. 3.5/5.

Wrath of the Norsemen - One of the better tracks on the album. It's plenty heavy and melodic just like the tracks before it and a very nice chorus. Overall a great track. 4.0/5.

A Beast I Am - This song was a bit better than your average AA song and it featured something that's relatively different for them which was the clean outro at the end. 3.5/5.

Doom Over Dead Man - A very good way to close the record. It features some violins(?) for added epic effect in the intro and even has some nice thrash-like riffs midway through the song and ends with some nice melody. 4.0/5.

Overall another great outing from the Scandinavian Metallers Amon Amarth and the best metal album of 2011 so far. After hearing this I really can't wait to see them live when they perform their special 2 part set.

Final Rating - 4/5 or 80%.

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Saturday, March 19, 2011

Children of Bodom - Relentless Reckless Forever Review

Children of Bodom are one of my and always have been favorite bands, one of my gateway metal bands along with Iron Maiden, Metallica and Exodus. However I was very disappointed with their last outing, that album being the failure that was Blooddrunk. I was still very optimistic about this album (despite the shitty title) and the album delivered. It's full of melody, heaviness and plenty of solos from both the guitarists and the keyboards. Now for the review...

Not My Funeral - This song opens with a nice riff and then the pace picks up with a pretty catchy riff. This song's got plenty of melody, and some guitar/keyboard collaboration for relatively maximum awesome. Very solid track to open the album. 4.0/5.

Shovel Knockout - A very nice bass riff to open and then it flies into a fast ass thrash riff. And after all of this thrashiness in comes the melody and some more guitar/keyboard awesomeness. Another solid track. 4.0/5.

Roundtrip to hell and Back - A pretty good song here, not as good as the ones before it but good nonetheless. One of the slower songs that features some gang vocals and a heavy ass chorus. 3.5/5.

Pussyfoot Miss Suicide - Easily the worst track off of the album. Very boring and nothing special whatsoever. 2.7/5.

Relentless Reckless Forever - And now the title track. It opens up very heavily and then you get that twin guitar attack from Laiho and Latvala. This track however is just a bit better than your average track and tends to follow the same pattern as other songs on this album. 3.3/5.

Ugly - One of the fastest tracks on the record, this song opens with a fast thrash riff and utilizes some fantastic tempo changes and solos. 4.0/5.

Cry of the Nihilist - Probably the best track off of the album (although Northpole Throwdown gives it a good run for it's money). A very awesome riff to open the track and it even has a catchy bridge/chorus and great drumming. Also harmony solos! A fantastic song. 4.5/5.

Was it Worth it? - The first track that COB released before the album, but it's just an average song with nothing really special about it. 3.0/5.

Northpole Throwdown - This is just a total fun track and a great way to close the record. Some heavy thrash riffs, with a badass chorus and cool solos. 4.5/5.

Children of Bodom definitely did better on this outing than they did on Blooddrunk and hopefully they can continue to impress. The only complaint I have for this album was the vocals were too low in the mix, and if it had better production there, it probably would've had an overall better sound. Well until next time peace.

Final rating - 3.7/5 or 74%.

Artillery - My Blood Review

Let me just get this out of the way now. I am a huge Artillery fan and a fan of the Stutzer brothers to be more exact. I love all of their releases and this one is no different. This album isn't short of riffs or solos at all. This isn't a typical thrash album though, as it has very strong power/traditional metal parts and influences which is not a bad thing at all as far as I'm concerned. Time for the review!

Mi Sangre (The Blood Song) - I guess this could be considered the title track of the album and it opens up with an acoustic intro and vocals that are very reminiscent of the great Iron Maiden, but then in comes a crazy riff a la Stutzer and then it's into a thrashier riff and solo. There are a lot of solos in this song as well as some great melodic parts along with the acoustic guitar every now and then. A very solid song and great way to open the album. 4.0/5.

Monster - This is probably my favorite song off the album, as it hails back to the good ol' days of Artillery on their best album, "By Inheritance." It's got those typical Artillery style riffs and all of the catchiness you could want. 4.5/5.

Dark Days - Another great song and is the only one on the album that can really rival "Monster." It has a bunch of different riffs from the melodic riffs to the heavy chords. All around a great song and one of the best on the album. 4.5/5.

Death is an Illusion - This song is pretty thrashy up until the chorus where the heavy metal influence shows, however this isn't bad at all, and suits the song quite well. 3.7/5.

Ain't Giving In - Probably the most unique track on the record as it isn't really thrashy at all but more along the lines of a good old fashioned heavy metal anthem telling the world "fuck you, I'll live how I want." 3.5/5.

Prelude to Madness - A nice little acoustic instrumental interlude that only spans one minute.

Thrasher - Well if you based this song on the title you would be right. This is definitely the thrashiest song on the record but, it's thrashy in a very generic way from the riffs to the lyrics. 3.0/5.

Warrior Blood - Starts off with an acoustic intro and then it's a mixture of heaviness and melody throughout the rest of the song, but sadly they weren't very catchy on this tune. 3.0/5.

Concealed in the Dark - Opens with a cool bass intro and then it goes into some really nice and thrashy riffs and some great catchy riffs that only Artillery can create. 4.0/5.

End of Eternity - This song has a lot of Power Metal influence with the acoustics and melodies along with the vocals, but it is still a fantastic song. A lot of solos in this song and catchy melodic riffs. 4.0/5.

The Great - A pretty neat wah intro that leads into some more thrashy riffs combined with the melodic riffs and solos. Overall a pretty solid track to end the album. 3.5/5.

Overall rating - 3.8/5 or 76%.

Needless to say, Artillery didn't fail to impress me at all with this album and I hope that they manage to tour the US, but that's probably just wishful thinking on my part. I also want to say thank you to all of the people that read this, because thanks to you guys, this blog is beginning to appear on the first pages of google searches, so again thank you and until next time peace.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Random Thrash Recommendation

Well today I figured I would just enlighten you folks with some awesome thrash from the great white north of Canada. The band that I have chosen for today's blog entry is Armoros. Armoros is an amazing thrash band who I feel should be mentioned in the same breath as other Canadian greats like Sacrifice and Razor. Armoros tends to play a more brutal kind of thrash similar to Kreator or Dark Angel. Some time later in the month I would like to do a whole scene rundown of Canada because they have some great Thrash bands and other metal bands that deserve some recognition. Anyway enjoy this song and until next time peace.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Assassin - Breaking the Silence Review

Old school German thrashers, Assassin have returned with their newest output, "Breaking the Silence." Now this album isn't "The Upcoming Terror" or "Interstellar Experience" nor is it as good as Heathen's "Breaking the Silence," but nonetheless they managed to put out a quality record. Although a lot of the songs follow the same structure of fitting in a bunch of solos, thrashy riffs, and heavy breaks, they all manage to flow well and remain catchy without boring the listener to death. Anyway let's get to the good stuff.

Breaking the Silence - This is a fantastic way to open up the new album, as it starts with a cool ass wah wah solo accompanied by crushing riffs and drumming that create the heavy intro and then it's into a nice riff. This song has some pretty good gang vocals and some catchy, thrashy riffs. Overall a great way to kick off the album, and a very solid song. 4.0/5.

Raise in the Dark - This song is much more groovy than the preceding one as well as the rest of tracks on the album, but a little groove isn't that bad is it? No it's not because this track is plenty awesome. Another solid track. 3.5/5.

Judas - This track's got a heavy intro and has some rather familiar riffs but it still retains that awesome Assassin sound. 3.5/5.

Turf War - The best parts of this track are definitely the intro and the outro. It begins with a good thrashy riff, has plenty of minor breaks, and then the second half of the song picks up and ends with a heavy outro and some smaller bass solos. 3.5/5.

Destroy the State - This is definitely one of the better songs on the album. It's filled with thrashy riffs, heavy riffs, breaks, and great solos, not to mention it's catchy! 4.0/5.

No Fear - Another above average song that follows a similar pattern as the other ones with the gang vocals, heavy breaks and solos but it also follows the most important trend of remaining catchy and not boring the listener. 4.0/5.

Kill or be Killed - This is one of the worst tracks on the album as it's just pretty generic from the riffs to the title. 3.0/5.

Real Friends - Another strong song from this album that features an outstanding bridge riff and a catchy chorus. Accompanying all of this are some great solos and a heavy outro. 4.0/5.

Strike Back - Pretty much the same problems as Kill or be Killed. 3.0/5.

I Like Cola - Now this is definitely a great way to end the album and is my favorite track. A song that's not serious at all but really fun. The riffs are very upbeat and happy (in the vein of Sodom's Ausgebombt) and is really silly like their song Junk Food from Interstellar Experience. 4.5/5.

Assassin put their best foot forward in making this album and I would say that they did a pretty damn good job of it. They blew their German comrades, Destruction out of the water with this new release, by doing the one thing that the "Day of Reckoning" severely lacked and that was being catchy and interesting.

Final rating - 3.7/5 or 74%.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Destruction - Day of Reckoning Review

Let me just start by saying that I have been a fan of Destruction's modern albums since they released The Antichrist but it seems like with every new album they get worse. This album features plenty of double bass work to the tempo up and the heaviness present thanks to new drummer, Vaaver. It also features a ton of solos thanks to Mike, but also a guest guitarist from modern thrashers Evile, Ol' Drake. However all of these solos and pummeling drumming were not enough to make this album anything memorable. Anyway let's review this thing!

The Price - First up is The Price. The song opens with that signature Schmier scream and a shredding solo and then we're into the riffs and the good stuff. There are some nice riffs and solos throughout the song and a catchy chorus which is a plus, not to mention a pretty cool breakdown. A great way to kick off the album. 3.6/5.

Hate is My Fuel - This next song is nothing like the one before it. This track is full of boring riffs and uninspired music in general. Nothing really catchy, just basically being heavy for the sake of being heavy. there is however a nice breakdown and melodic solo part, but not enough to save the mediocrity of this song. 3.0/5.

Armageddonizer - A generic title for a generic song. This song continues the heavy trend but also continues the boring, uncatchy trend. Schmier experiments with the vocals a bit here and even has a minor bass solo but the song tends to follow a similar pattern as the one before it. 3.0/5.

Devil's Advocate - Now this is what I'm talking about. This song is easily the best off of the album and for the simple reason that it's catchy and fun. It opens with a catchy riff and then goes into a crazy ass riff that is what we've come to expect of good old Mike. It's also filled to the brim with great solos that fit the song just right and push it over the top. 4.4./5.

Day of Reckoning - Now we have the title track. This is one of the better songs off of the album but not as good as the preceding track. It features some cool solos and heavy riffs and remains better than the average tracks before it. 3.6/5.

Sorcerer of Black Magic - I did not like this song at all. This song seemed to focus more on the vocals than the riffs and it wasn't very catchy in the least bit. 2.5/5.

The next 5 songs all suffered from the same boring and uninspired music which drug this album down the drain. They all get 2.7/5.

This was one of the new relases that I was looking forward to but Destruction did not come through. The band that released classics like Infernal Overkill and Eternal Devestation was nowhere to be found on this record which made it very mediocre and honestly, just about any modern thrash band could've wrote this.
Final rating - 2.88/5 or 58%.
Well until next time peace.

Interview with Tom from Lich King.

Well it's been a while since I posted here but I've been busy, but now I've returned with an interview with the frontman of the mighty new wave thrash band Lich King. Lich King plays retro thrash in the vein of the greats from the 80's such as Slayer, Exodus and Vio-Lence. They've made it clear that they aren't looking to create a new sound but to pick up where the greats left off and they've done a pretty good job thus far releasing three albums: Necromantic Maelstrom, Toxic Zombie Onslaught, and World Gone Dead. Lich King got a lot of slack for the crappy production that they had on the first two but Lich King made believers out of many doubters with World Gone Dead by upping the production value and the songwriting. They left behind the humorous jokester themed music for the most part and replaced it with a bit more mature music that kept all of the thrashing heaviness the predecessors had. Anyway let's get on with the interview.

Skull Fracturing Metal - Well Tom, you are obviously considered a part of the NWOTM, so who are some of your favorite bands? Do you have any that you don't particularly care for or just plain don't like?

Tom - My favorites are Mass Extinction, Witchaven, Hatchet, Violator, Fueled By Fire's 1st, Evile's 1st, Dr. Living Dead and Vindicator. I'm sure I could think of others. I don't care for Toxic Holocaust and I outright dislike... well, I'll keep that one under wraps but they're tools with shitty music.

Skull Fracturing Metal - Well now let's get back to the old eh? I know that you are a huge Exodus and Vio-Lence fanboy, but who are some of your other major influences when it comes to writing?

Tom - Slayer's a big one, obviously... I probably draw more from Slayer than anyone else, despite my Exodusy Vio-Lencey ways. Metallica. SORRY, TROO THRASHERS. SoD's a big influence, and they showed me that you can make silly songs that will still be fun.

Skull Fracturing Metal - So now that we know your influences, how do you go about writing the material? Do you come up with lyrics first or the riffs?

Tom - Riffs, always. I don't get the people that start with lyrics. I sit down with the guitar and a basic drum track and start making up riffs until one sticks, then I write the next one. It occasionally takes a very long time- I've been writing one for too long, but I just don't know where to go from this one riff. I'll get it but it's really slowing me down.

Skull Fracturing Metal - Well hopefully you'll get that song settled. As you know many feel that the production on the first two albums was terrible (moreso Necromantic Maelstrom). Are there any plans for re-recording them?

Tom - Tentative plans, yes. We're keeping the focus on new stuff. Rerecording the old stuff would take a lot of time that Brian doesn't have... otherwise it'd probably have been done already. Brian's the guy that does all our recording n' production n' stuff, and when he says we can't do something, it tends to not get done. Sooo for now we're focusing on the new stuff.

Skull Fracturing Metal - Well it's definitely more important to get that new stuff out for your "millions" of fans. How far are you on LK album #4?

Tom - Pretty damned far. It's about 95% written. This last 5% is proving to be a bitch. Every time I go in to write an ending to a song or patch a weak section, I just spin my wheels until I give up and put the guitar back down. I think I've had writer's block for the past month or two, but I do believe I'm coming out of it. That's good because I'm so sick of not having these songs done. At least the art's finished.

Skull Fracturing Metal - Well I'm looking forward to the album and the art as well. You always do manage to come up with some fantastic art. So after all of the positive feedback that you received after releasing World Gone Dead, do you plan on following that kind of sound for the fourth or possibly changing things up a bit?

Tom - We're not really planning on anything, but are just writing by heart (awww). The sound will be pretty much the same thing. the closest thing to a planned WGD imitation is that we made sure to have a slow song. Grindwheel on WGD was an unexpected favorite for a lot of people, so we're heavying it up with another slow one and hoping this one works too. this song has the one noticeable change I believe people will find on the whole album - melodic singing. It's going to be a bit weird, but it matches the song and the subject matter.

Skull Fracturing Metal - Experimenting isn't always a bad thing and hopefully in your case it comes out well and the fans react but of course there will be haters. I understand that you've had some line-up troubles recently, have these problems been resolved?

Tom - Uhh... not really. We're doing live shows and it's not slowing down the new album, but we don't have things settled just yet. It's a bigger, gooier mess than I've let on. things might just get gooier still before they're done.

Skull Fracturing Metal - Well if you do get a line-up together, I know that you've been gathering funds for a tour from your loyal fans, how has that been coming along?

Tom - Pretty well. We saw another band do it and thought what the hell. We're up to over $750 so far. We might not get there but it's worth a shot. The downside I didn't see coming is that so many people are pissy about being asked for a handout, making snarky remarks in FB posts, etc... it's like, really? you guys are going to bitch about this?

Skull Fracturing Metal - Yeah it seems pretty pointless, if you don't like it don't donate. And now for a random question, what are your top 5 favorite thrash albums?

Tom - Oooh. Well, I'm sure I won't win any awards for originality here, but
1. Exodus - Another Lesson in Violence
2. Vio-Lence - The Eternal Nightmare
3. SOD - Speak English or Die
4. Slayer - Reign in Blood
5. Exodus Tempo of the Damned

I know it's a crime to have 2 post-1997 Exodus albums listed here but what the hell. I love 'em.

Skull Fracturing Metal - Well I want to thank you for your time and close this interview by asking if you have any words for your fans?


Well there you have it folks... Tom and the rest of Lich King continue to tread on with their brand of thrash into the new decade. Be sure to check them out at these links and until next time peace.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Random New Wave Thrash Recommendation

I'm back with another random recommendation. I actually have a lot of ideas for future blog entries and such but due to being rather busy I figured I would keep things short and sweet for now and give a recommendation on one of my favorite new, up and coming bands. The band's name is Invection. So far this band has released two EPs and they are working on their full length right now, so in preparation I thought I would post their best track IMO to give everyone who reads this a good impression of what this band is capable of. I would describe their style as a good mixture of thrash along with some groove and gothenburg kind of influences. Look out for an epic post the next time, I'm out of here for now. Peace.

Feel free to like these guys on facebook or check out their official youtube channel for any updates.

Here's a random OSDM track for you freaks!

Today I thought I would share a cool DM track with everyone that hails from the home of awesome OSDM, Sweden. The band is Edge of Sanity. When you think of Swedish DM I'm sure the first bands that come to mind are Entombed, Dismember, Carnage, Unleashed, etc. Edge of Sanity is another great band that plays some very heavy, groovy, Swedish DM. So here's the track for y'all until next time. Peace.