EXCLUSIVE STREAM: Helrunar – “The Last Antichrist”

Teutonic metal masters Helrunar are releasing a maelstrom of material this fall via their label, the highly-respected Prophecy Productions. The band is releasing a new album of bleak apocalyptic anthems, Vanitas Vanitatvm, on September 28th. The new album Vanitas Vanitatvm will be released on digipak CD, gatefold double vinyl and 2xCD box set, limited to 1.500 copies and containing the digipak as well as an additional foldout booklet, patch and poster flag as well as a bonus CD with three exclusive studio tracks. Two of which are an interpretation of Einstürzende Neubauten’s ‘Prolog’ and ‘The Last Antichrist’; a special tribute to the classic sounds of Norwegian black metal from the 1990s. Ghost Cult is proud to debut this exclusive new track, ‘The Last Antichrist’, for you now!  Continue reading

Running Wild – Blazon Stone, Pile Of Skulls, Black Hand Inn, Masquerade Reissues

If ‘Riding The Storm’ from Death or Glory, the album that closed the first chapter of Running Wild’s career as well as being the chronological end of the first batch of Noise Records/BMG’s reissues, saw the band absolutely perfect their main songwriting style, sixth album Blazon Stone saw them kick off a run of unprecedented consistency and quality. By now armed with a recognisable, cohesive and distinct sound, for the next four albums, Rock n’ Rolf dragged Running Wild to a level of Heavy Metal excellence that, though predictable stylistically, was welcomed with open arms, raised horns and strained voices. During this period, Running Wild became masters at their craft, even if they had not yet perfected the art of the photo shoot (seriously… the Labyrinth style costumes and volumized bouffants have not aged well…) Continue reading

Running Wild – Gates To Purgatory, Branded and Exiled, Under Jolly Roger, Port Royal, Death Or Glory Reissues

For some of us Heavy Metal fans of a certain vintage, there exists a memory most tactile and warm; that of visiting record shops that sold vinyl by the rack load, and bloody cheap too. And one Saturday morning while absconding from Spanish GCSE duties, I stumbled up Running Wild’s Branded and Exiled in Time Records, going for less than the cost of a portion of chips (an additional option that was no doubt taken up later in the day). Continue reading

Orden Ogan – Gunmen

Credit where credit is due. It’s not often that genuine contenders rear their heads once their career is already up and running… the anointed have usually been identified and lauded from early whether in sports, art, music, whatever, it is rare for a band to be established and then to suddenly stick their head above the parapet seemingly as if from out of nowhere as one of the best there is. With Gunmen (AFM), though, Orden Ogan have done just that, the Germans producing one of this years’ best Power/Heavy Metal offerings. Continue reading

Kreator To Re-Issue KlassiK First Four Albums

German Thrash Legends, Kreator have announced they will be reissuing deluxe versions of their seminal opening quadrilogy. Released via BMGEndless Pain, Pleasure To Kill (featuring the legendary Flag Of Hate EP), Terrible Certainty and Extreme Aggression will be re-issued across a variety of digital, vinyl and CD formats on Friday 9th June.  Continue reading

Modern Thrash band CRIPPER talk about next years’ 10th Anniversary!

Cripper_Promopics_Hyena_band_018_b by Alina Omerbasic

Not only do German Thrashers Cripper have a hot new album out in the shape of Hyëna (Metal Blade – read our review herethey also have their tenth anniversary coming up next year! Guitarist Christian Bröhenhorst and bassist Gerrit Mohrmann talked to Ghost Cult about what being in Cripper has been all about for the last decade

 

Christian: There were so much high points within the last 10 years for us. Back when we started we hadn’t thought too much about growing bigger, climbing up stages on big events or so on. There was one big goal for and that was writing and playing songs. When we took the next step, playing live, that felt so good we just never stopped, haha! Our next goal was doing an album, booking a small tour that leads the band to other cities and new ground. 

Take a look at the cover of our vinyl EP! This collage of thousands of old pictures takes you through the band’s history and funny moments. It comes exclusively in limited fan box set of Hyëna (Metal Blade) and to us it’s like taking a trip in a time machine. So many moments that we shared within the band, past members, friends and other bands; pretty cool, pretty old school, haha! 

How do you feel you’ve changed since the band started?
Christian: It’s all about doing songs and playing live since the very beginning. In this case, the band doesn’t change too much. But today there is more business around for sure. 

Nevertheless, we’re fans, lovin’ music, hittin’ the road and havin’ a good time on stage and while creativity processes. (It) feels very cool to know some guys out there who listen to our stuff and being interested in what we are coming up with. No doubt, this group grows up and it got bigger in comparison to the band’s starting point. We have a different bass player and havin’ a father within the band, that’s all that changed, haha! To be honest we’re still a DIY group, takin’ care of the songwriting process, figuring out arrangements, working on certain songs over months, doin’ artwork, album’s layout and merchandise design, running the band’s websites and our web store by our own.

We like to pull the strings on what we care so much. The band plays a big role and takes a big part in the life of every single band member.

Cripper_Promopics_Hyena_band_012

What would you like to achieve over the next ten years which you didn’t in the first?
Christian: Well, maybe there will be a tour or at least some single shows that take us to a continent we haven’t been so far. It would be great showing our material to a crowd far away and being on the road in countries and cultures that are totally different to our home.

What are your plans for the future?

Gerrit: There are a few shows left this year. On the upcoming weekend we will play the Eindhoven Metal Meeting and the following day the Iron Steel Fest II in Belgium. Then we have a our last show this year on New Years Eve. For 2015, well, let’s see what the future brings.  

Right now we are planning 2015. Some festival shows are already confirmed, such as RockHarz 2015. With our Label Metal Blade we have a very good partner to spread our Cripper stuff around the world, and then let’s see what happens.

 And check out www.cripper.de  for more live dates. 

 

Cripper on Facebook

 

DAN SWINHOE

Accept – Blind Rage

accept_-_album_cover_-_blind_rage_500px-72dpi

They say that you can’t keep a good man down. In the case of German Heavy Metal outfit Accept, that should probably read “you can’t keep good men down”, as their latest record, the considerably more metal than you, Blind Rage (Nuclear Blast) ably proves.

Accept seem to have been going since Henry VIII was a toddler but these last few years have seen this teutonic power unit find themselves in what can only be described as something of a purple patch. The return of Mark Turnillo on lead vocals has doubtless helped because over the last couple of years, and on this latest record, Accept have rarely sounded as fresh, vibrant or exciting. Well, not since they invited us to place our balls to the proverbial wall, anyway.

Blind Rage is completely and utterly heavy metal. It is, in many ways, hugely traditional and charmingly so. The addition of Andy Sneap on some of the production duties might encourage you to think that they had gone all modern. Don’t believe a word of it. As he did with the spectacular revival of NWOBHM stalwarts Hell, Sneap’s work here is to give a sheen and a modern gloss to a song structure that is immediate, familiar and inviting.

Take the opening track ‘Stampede’, which arrives completely cocksure, carefree and ready to box your ears. Likewise, the gnarly title track which does that twin guitar part thing so beloved of metal bands and wherein our favourite Germanic cousins suggest that they are the last flag bearers for this thing called heavy metal. There are even lyric checks to “Sabbaths, black” “denim and leather” and “purple hazes” so you know exactly which side this team are backing. It is both fist pumping and grin inducing. As this is Accept, there are riffs and solos aplenty and you really cannot go far wrong with the surprisingly catchy ‘Bloodbath Mastermind’ nor the infectious ‘The Ashes’.

Given that this is unreconstructed heavy metal, you don’t get any breakdowns, rap middle-eights or anything approaching a complex time signature. These absences are, of course, entirely in the record’s favour as it is packed, sardine-like, with heavy tune after heavy tune. It is defiant, melodious and full of the lyrical flourishes that heavy metal fans know and love- falls of empires, battles for freedom and being hell bent on destruction.

Blind Rage is an enjoyable romp of an album. It won’t be winning any awards but it’s more than just a “will this do?” contractual sojourn. It might not boil the heavy metal ocean,  but it probably deserves to at least turn on the kettle. Ausgezeichnet, as they might say in Germany.

 

7.5/10

Accept on Facebook

 

MAT DAVIES