I’ve always pictured the Stockholm-bound The Riven as the Swedish version of Thulsa Doom – similar vibes, similar undertones, and similar upbeat resonances. The RIven, as far as I observe, has always been influenced by the sounds from the golden age of classic rock; the 1970s and 1980s. Their sounds are genuinely hard-hitting, sharp-shooting, and they appear to be the kind of sounds that would make you want to headbang as the exciting memories in your head replay themselves in retrospect whilst you listen to them. In terms of genre classification, they might pass as heavy blues rock with progressive, psychedelic, and classical influences and a strong emphasis on menacing riffs as well as vigorous vocals.
Old school metal lovers gathered on the west side of Detroit last Saturday to witness the acclaimed and beloved band, Accept. Nestled on the borders of two of the city’s burbs, The Token Lounge is a cozy-sized venue that has been serving Livonia, Westland, and beyond for over fifty years. Known for welcoming everyone from world famous bands to local artists down the street, this hallowed hall was a special spot to host the legendary German/American act. Touring for the first time in a while, Accept have been excited to promote their sixteenth full-length, Too Mean to Die (Nuclear Blast Records) that came out in 2021. Read our review here! Their show last weekend hit town near the end of their month-long North American run, and we Michiganders were happy to have them.
The British rockers Massive Wagons’ sixth record Triggered! (Earache Records) is another dose of their tried and tested, anthemic classic rock. It is still laced with humour, big riffs and abundant hooks but more raucous. Alongside The Darkness and Slade influences of their last record, the top ten House of Noise, are heavier moments, a touch of soft rock and a bit of reggae.
Fifteen years, and now seven albums into a successful career that has seen them move into both chart success status in their native Japan and mainstream culture by providing the opening theme for Netflix original anime series Bastard, Nagoya five-piece metalcore outfit coldrain are back following the longest gap between releases, with new offering Nonnegative (Warner Japan).
I’ve always been a sucker for a tasty, “unusual” or “unexpected” cover version. Some fans hate them, some bands hate being remembered for them, some say they are cynical clickbait. But I very often like ’em. No strangers to covers (Phil Collins’ ‘I Don’t Care Anymore’, anyone?), this Toronto-formed outfit include here their already-released reworking of Canadian hot-stuff The Weeknd’s smash banger ‘Blinding Lights’. And I’ll be Goddamned if they haven’t turned it into a Saint Asonia song – glorious, even joyous, expertly conceived, adapted, and delivered. Superb guys! Inspired!
Italian stoner rockers Oreyeon release their third album Equations For The Useless (Heavy Psych Sounds), a potent mix of stoner, grunge, heavy rock, and lengthier progressive compositions. This album notably draws on the influences of years gone by not only in style but was also recorded live, an approach to a recording I’m very much a fan of.
While it’s damn near time to call a moratorium on the “bands affected by the pandemic” introduction to review pieces, it does seem particularly prevalent to do so in reference to Halestorm, for whom life on the road seems such an integral and core part of who and what they are. That isn’t to say that a fifth album wouldn’t have been coming around now, just that the circumstances and unplanned quiet time wouldn’t have dictated the methods of its creation.Continue reading
Hailing from Southern Connecticut, Progressive Metal band He Was A God, recently unleashed their three song EP The Smile & The Scar. A first for this band, however, they are not new to the scene. Chris Densky (Genitorturers, Deadstar Assembly, Adva), Tony Pellino (Transfixed Movement, Adva), Dan Perrone (Adva, Odessa) and Ray Zvovushe (King Sexy, Adva) have been making music together since grade school. The addition of vocalist Ben Curns completed their lineup and He Was A God was formed.
Lucifer – Lucifer IV
With Lucifer releasing albums of a consistent style at a workman’s pace, it’s easy to overlook the underlying trajectory that’s been gradually in motion. There’s not much of those Occult Doom roots left on Lucifer IV (Century Media Records) as the band has seemingly completed their transformation from female-fronted Uncle Acid to what sounds like Karen Carpenter singing over KISS riffs. Fortunately, it’s hardly a drastic change as Johanna Sadonis’ sultry croon and the freerolling grooves remain as common denominators.Continue reading
Father/son Heavy Rock band Heavy Water has shared the new single “Tree In The Wind” which is taken from their debut album, Red Brick City, out now via Silver Lining Music. It also comes with a lyric video you can watch now!