ALBUM REVIEW: Holy Fawn – Dimensional Bleed


Back in the tail end of the seventies, Bon Scott of AC/DC sang “if you want blood, you got it.” Over four decades later in 2022, we might hear a comparable rallying cry from vocalist/guitarist Ryan Osterman and his post-rock/shoegaze band Holy Fawn. However, on Dimensional Bleed (Wax Bodega) — the Arizona natives’ second album — the message would be more like “if you want relentless, beautiful sadness, you got it.”

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ALBUM REVIEW: Ithaca – They Fear Us


 

Following the release of their debut album The Language Of Injury in 2019, Ithaca quite rightly found themselves labelled as one of the new up and coming buzz bands in the UK’s Metal scene. The album was a furious slice of post-hardcore / metalcore, full of great riffs and powerful vocals delivered by singer Djamilla Boden Azzouz, which saw them saw them gain comparisons with the likes of other heavy, strong bands including Svalbard and Employed To Serve. Continue reading


FESTIVAL REVIEW: Download Festival 2022 Part II


My Saturday at Download began over at the main stage where I caught the retro new wave of classic rock act Those Damn Crows, a band who have amassed a significant following in Wales thanks to appearances at the likes of Steelhouse Festival and other rock-oriented affairs. Possibly one of the smallest acts to perform on the main stage this year, the band spared no expense offering a fantastic wake-up call with some unremarkable if solid hard rock tunes. The day’s proceedings then continued firmly in the rocky territory with a southern, slightly heavier twang with Black Label Society, in their first festival appearance on UK soil since 2015, and with less of Zakk Wylde’s expectedly lengthy and tiresome soloing. Don’t get me wrong, Zakk was still doing his usual thing, but with a much-needed addition of percussion, making the moments of instrumental wankery much more palatable than usual.

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FESTIVAL REVIEW: Download Festival 2022 Part I


After a prolonged absence from the British metal scene courtesy of the COVID-19 pandemic (save for a scaled-back pilot event in 2021), Leicestershire’s iconic summer rock, punk, and metal weekender, Download Festival returned to Castle Donnington in a maximalist blaze of glory, packing in a full-scale 5-day experience with some familiar favorites, hotly tipped up-and-comers and some of the best international acts that rock and metal scene has to offer.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Vexes – Imagine What We Could Destroy – If Only Given Time


 

Hailing from New Jersey and rising from the ashes of East Coast bands including Vessl and A Life Once Lost, Vexes released their debut album Ancient Geometry in 2018, which saw strong comparisons with Deftones and a clear influence of the seminal band in their work. Fast forward five years and Vexes are following up with Imagine What We Could Destroy /// If Only Given Time (Self-Released) their sophomore double album.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Soulfly – The Soul Remains Insane The Studio Albums 1998 – 2004


 

Whenever an established act loses its frontman, especially one as talismanic as Max Cavalera, fans are usually left choosing sides. Do you go with the musician striking out on their own or do your allegiances remain with the band? Largely dependent on the situation, an amicable split can leave listeners happily following both parties down separate paths to the promise of glory but when open hostility is at the heart of the separation, loyalties are often put to the test.Continue reading


CONCERT REVIEW: Deftones – Gojira Live at Michigan Lottery Amphitheater


 

It was a perfect spring evening last Tuesday in Sterling Heights when Alternative Metal giants Deftones brought their tour to town. The sun was shining, and the birds were singing when a line of traffic started to form outside the Michigan Lottery Amphitheater. Cars were bumper to bumper as they tried to squeeze their way into the sold-out show at this Detroit suburb open-air venue. The opening act of the tour, VOWWS, could not make the gig so the second band on the roster, the mighty Gojira opened up the night.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Fracture Type – Pickaxe


On the right night, if you walk out from North Quincy Station, past the “brutalist McDonalds,” following the funk towards Wollaston Beach, you might come across a house that seems to be pulsing. On a night like that, if you fight your way through the mass of burly beards, skateboarders, and pitbulls and take a sonic blast to the face, you’ll find yourself in Ugly Robot Studios, and if you’re lucky, you’ll be treated to a front-row performance of Fracture Type. Continue reading


Deftones Announce Intimate Show at London’s O2 Forum Kentish Town Next Month


As they wind down their sold-out North American tour with Gojira and VOWWS, GRAMMY Award®-winning band Deftones, have announced an exclusive intimate show at London’s O2 Forum Kentish Town on June 13th 2022. This, and their main stage performance at Download Festival the preceding weekend, will be the band’s first in the UK since they released their 2020 album Ohms (Warner Music). Grandson will provide direct support!

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ALBUM REVIEW: Puppy – Pure Evil


It feels as if it has been a long, long time since Puppy released their debut album, The Goat to the world – although the pandemic may have something to do with that considering it has only been three years. When the album was first released, the trio stunned us with an eclectic mix of heavy sludgy, grungy riffs combined with even more eclectic vocal harmonies you’d find somewhere on a Weezer or a Wheatus release. The combination of the two has allowed the band to access the best of both worlds, appearing on some heavier lineups, while still being able to go onto support acts like Creeper. Whether the three-piece will be able to keep this up with their sophomore release is another matter.Continue reading