FESTIVAL REVIEW: Download Festival UK 2019

Throughout the journey from my home in the North of England to Leicestershire’s infamous Download Festival, I could be sure of only two things as a first time attendee; that I would absolutely see Tool headline, and that I would have to endure what was to become the muddiest weekend of my life in order to reach that point. Continue reading

FESTIVAL PREVIEW: Download Festival 2019

The granddaddy of UK music festivals, Download Festival takes flight this weekend and Ghost Cult is there! The forecast calls for rain (surprise!) but the spirits will not be dampened! Here is the day by day rundown of indispensable bands to not miss and the running order!  Continue reading

Download 2019 Books Stone Temple Pilots, Halestorm, Clutch, Behemoth and more

Download 2019 has mad a major announcement today as forty-three new bands have been added! Among the new bands added are Stone Temple Pilots, Halestorm, Clutch, Behemoth,  Beartooth, Alcest, Animals As Leaders, At The Gates, Bad Wolves, Three Days Grace, Twelve Foot Ninja and more. Slipknot, Tool, and Def Leppard are the headliners for the annual rock extravaganza. The three-day festival takes place on 14-16 June 2019 at the spiritual home of rock in Donington Park, Leicestershire. Kerrang! Radio have also launched a talent search for a chance to open the Avalanche Stage at the festival. Continue reading

Heavy Montreal 2018 To Feature Avenged Sevenfold, Rob Zombie, Marilyn Manson, And More!

After skipping 2017, Heavy Montreal is officially back, and the 2018 lineup is HUGE. Continue reading

REVIEWS ROUND-UP: Ghost, Lovebites, Babylon Fire, HammerFall and more…

 

The beauty to last weeks’ beast, the Ghost Cult album round-up is back for your vulgar delectation, and our final compilation of 2017 captures albums most Metal and most Melodic, shining a light on last-minute stocking fillers that St. Anne, rather than St Nick, would approve of… Continue reading

Heavy Montreal Announces Daily Lineups

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Daily lineups have been announced for the 2015 Heavy Montreal Festival, happening August 7-9, 2015 at Parc Jean Drapeau in Montreal, QC.

Friday, August 07th:

Korn (performing their self-titled debut)
Alexisonfire
Mastodon
Meshuggah
Lagwagon
Extreme
Arch Enemy
Neurosis
Strung Out
Periphery
Gorguts
Fozzy
Lofofora
Veil Of Maya
The Flatliners
The Acacia Strain
Moneen
Obscura
After The Burial
Cattle Decapitation
Nothing More
Toyguitar

Saturday, August 08th:
Faith No More
Iggy Pop
NOFX
Billy Talent
Testament
Abbath
Gojira
Lita Ford
Rocket From The Crypt
Glassjaw
Pentagram
Devin Townsend Project
Deafheaven
Dying Fetus
B.A.R.E.
Swingin’ utters
The Brains
The Agonist
Masked Intruder
Battlecross
Slaves On Dope
Intervals
Dig It Up
Mass Murder Messiah

Sunday, August 09th:
Slipknot
Lamb Of God
Bullet For My Valentine
Within Temptation
Warrant
Marky Ramone’s Blitzkrieg With Andrew W.K.
Nuclear Assault
Ihsahn
Asking Alexandria
Dokken
Coal Chamber
Pig Destroyer
Motionless In White
Sanctuary
Small Brown Bike
Insomnium
Jasta
Upon A Burning Body
Anonymus
Wilson
Omnium Gatherum
Dead Tired
Sandveiss

Unstoppable Recording Machine Coming To Detroit June 18-21st

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Critically acclaimed guitarist, composer, producer and engineer Eyal Levi and producer Joey Sturgis (Asking Alexandria, Of Mice & Men, I See Stars) will be bringing their Unstoppable Recording Machine audio boot camp tour to 37studios in Detroit, MI from June 18-21, 2015.

Having already hosted successful workshops in Cleveland, OH, Orlando, FL and Portland, OR. – which have featured special guests like Matt Heafy (Trivium), Anup Sastry (Jeff Loomis, Intervals), Keith Merrow (Conquering Dystopia), Joey Sturgis and more – Levi describes the “Unstoppable Record Machine” boot camps as “intense, hands-on, comprehensive immersion style experiences that will show people exactly what matters when trying to make pro sounding recordings. In just a few days, we will cover what would take a year or more in traditional school.”

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Polyphia Supporting Dance Gavin Dance On Upcoming Tour

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Dallas instrumental outfit Polyphia will be releasing a remastered and repackaged version of their debut album Muse on April 21, 2015 via Headphone Music/Equal Vision Records.  The album was produced by Nick Sampson [Of Mice & Men, Asking Alexandria]. Stream the music video for “Finale” here.

The band says:

“We’re very excited to be re-releasing our debut, Muse, through Headphone Music / Equal Vision Records! The re-release features 11 remastered tracks with all new artwork designed by our very own Tim Henson,” shares the band. “We’re stoked to be on the EVR roster with the likes of The Dear Hunter, and alumni such as Circa Survive, Coheed and Cambria, and Portugal. The Man.”

TRACKLISTING: Muse
1. 87
2. Sweet Tea (ft. Aaron Marshall of Intervals)
3. Champagne (ft. Nick Johnston)
4. Aviator (ft. Jason Richardson of Chelsea Grin)
5. The Jungle (ft. Jakub Zytecki of Disperse)
6. Memory
7. Mood Swing
8. Hourglass (ft. Nick Sampson of I Am Abomination)
9. James Franco
10. Baditude (ft. Mario Caramena & Erick Hansel of CHON)
11. Finale

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This Spring, Polyphia will perform as direct support to Dance Gavin Dance, with additional support from Hail The Sun and Stolas. All upcoming tour dates can be found below.

TOUR DATES
Polyphia – festival appearances
Mar 20: South By So What?! – Grand Prairie, TX
Apr 10: Texas Independent Fest – Austin, TX

Dance Gavin Dance w/ Polyphia, Hail The Sun and Stolas
Apr 14: Chain Reaction – Anaheim, CA
Apr 15: Nile Theatre – Mesa, AZ
Apr 17: Korova – San Antonio, TX
Apr 18: Red 7 – Austin, TX
Apr 19: The Rail Club – Fort Worth, TX
Apr 20: Scout Bar – Houston, TX
Apr 22: Backbooth – Orlando, FL
Apr 23: Culture Room – Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Apr 24: The Orpheum – Tampa, FL
Apr 25: The Masquerade – Atlanta, GA
Apr 26: Empire – Springfield, VA
Apr 28: Baltimore Soundstage – Baltimore, MD
Apr 29: Union Transfer – Philadelphia, PA
Apr 30: Middle East Downstairs – Cambridge, MA
May 01: Webster Hall (Marlin Room) – New York, NY
May 02: GameChangerWorld – Howell, NJ
May 03: Mr. Smalls Theatre – Millvale, PA
May 04: Majestic Theatre – Detroit, MI
May 05: The Bottom Lounge – Chicago, IL
May 06: Vega – Lincoln, NE
May 08: Jub Jub’s – Reno, NV

dance gavin dance polyphia tour

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Slipknot, Faith No More, Korn, Lamb Of God On Heavy Montreal 2015

heavy montreal 2015

The 2015 Heavy Montreal Festival has confirmed their lineup, which will be happening at Parc Jean-Drapeau in Montreal, QC from August 7-9, 2015. For those speculating about who will be on this year’s Summer Slaughter Tour, check out the post below.

Slipknot
Faith No More
Korn (performing “Korn” in full)
Alexisonfire
Lamb Of God
Iggy Pop
NOFX
Billy Talent
Mastodon
Bullet For My Valentine
Meshuggah
Within Temptation
Gojira
Testament
Arch Enemy
Lagwagon
Lita Ford
Marky Ramone and Andrew W.K. (performing a Ramones set)
Warrant
Dokken
Rocket From The Crypt
Asking Alexandria
Periphery
Deafheaven
Coal Chamber
Nuclear Assault
Dying Fetus
Glassjaw
Ihsahn
Pentagram
Gorguts
B.A.R.F.
Motionless In White
Moneen
Lofofora
Small Brown Bike
Pig Destroyer
Anonymus
The Flatliners
The Agonist
Fozzy
Upon A Burning Body
Nothing More
Jasta
Battlecross
Insomnium
Slaves On Dope
Ominum Gatherum
Wilson
Dead Tired
Toyguitar
Intervals
Dig It Up

Protest The Hero – Battlecross – The Safety Fire – Intervals: Live at the Middle East, Cambridge MA

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It was a chilly night in a quieter than usual Saturday in Cambridge Massachusetts. The Middle East nightclub sits on a welcoming strip of culturally diverse shops and restaurants. A perfect location for Protest the Hero’s Volition (Razor & Tie) tour; a multi-national and eclectic metallic offering.

For all of the shows I’ve been fortunate enough to attend in the New England area, this marked the first time I’ve attended a show downstairs at the Middle East. A basement venue that resembles the ultimate metal mancave or what Rocko’s in Manchester New Hampshire could have been if the staff actually cared. An hour between doors and the opening band afforded me ample time to down some economy brews and admire the not particularly well-lit, but intimate locale.

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First up were Protest the Hero’s Canadian brethren in Intervals. For an unsigned band they’ve garnered lots of attention in progressive and tech-metal circles, especially with their latest release, A Voice Within. With the room starving for some live volume, the boys in Intervals were happy to oblige. Heavy 7-string palm muting was underway with tunes like ‘Alchemy’ and ‘Ephemeral’ starting the evening’s first mosh-pits. It was modern tech-metal or djent through and through; Tesseract shirts and Ibanez/Steinberger guitar interplay aplenty. Obviously talented players with a lot of stage energy, the only problem being the repetitive nature of djent. Midway through the set the songs began to feel repetitive. However things livened up again at the end of the performance when they jumped into songs like ‘Automaton’ and ‘Moment Marauder’ which featured some catchy melodies and riffs not unlike Periphery’s.

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London England’s The Safety Fire sieged the stage next with their frenetic, noisy art-metal. Since I had missed out on their last North American trek, it was very satisfying to finally catch them tearing into live numbers from last year’s sublime Mouth of Swords (Inside Out). To the best of my knowledge The Safety Fire is considered progressive metal, but to be honest I wouldn’t know what to label them as. As evidenced by live flow of offerings like ‘Red Hatchet’ and ‘Huge Hammers’ their sound is metal one second and sometime that you’d find in Spin magazine the next. And I liked that. A lot, actually. Now that I had gotten a taste of their live sound, I’m ready for a proper headlining turn from these British upstarts.

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At this point the Middle East was a sweatbox and I needed some more Pabst Blue Ribbon relief in order to properly enjoy the awesome that is Battlecross live. After refueling at the bar I took a spot front and center to take in Battlecross’ brand of “Blue Collar Thrash Metal” as close and loudly as possible. The bearded Michigan metal warriors did not disappoint. Guitarists Tony Asta and Hiran Deraniyagala traded off blazing riffs and searing leads effortlessly. What I thought would be a very pro-progressive metal audience ate up Battlecross’ savage thrash stylings. Sure the argument can be made that they only have one speed (a very brisk one, thanks to former Black Dahlia Murder drummer Shannon Lucas holding down on drums), but is that really an issue when you’ve got most of the crowd buying what you’re selling? If you weren’t headbanging you were in one of the various circle pits that would break at the drop of a hat or raiding their merchandise booth. Audience reaction to pit-churners like ‘Kaleb’ and ‘Flesh and Bone’ was so raucous that frontman Kyle Gunther declared Cambridge to be the best crowd of the entire tour.

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Protest the Hero faced the stiff challenge of following up Battlecross’ assault, but the Torontonians were up to the task. Armed with some truly respectable facial hair, Protest served their Dream Theater by the way of Botch sonic cocktail to a crowd that hung on to every word. The young Canadians burned through 12 songs in the span of an hour and ten minutes, ranging from Kezia era anthems like ‘Blindfolds’ to more recent stompers like ‘Underbite.’ Midway into their effort the many fans had forgotten about the “No Crowd-Surfing” policy and were attempting to join the band onstage. Having the best live-sound on the bill paid dividends as it showcased the band’s technical mastery and vocalist Rody Walker’s pipes. And speaking of Walker, his witty lyrics are only matched by his onstage banter. Walker maintained an easy charm with the crowd even though most in attendance were Bruins fans while he’s partial to his Toronto Maple Leafs. I mean if we can’t agree on how much The Montreal Canadians and Max Pacioretty suck, then what can we agree on really? Conversations on hockey and the integrity of modern Star Trek movies is how you make inroads to great international relations. They capped off their set with crowd favorites ‘Bloodmeat’ and for my money is their best song, ‘C’est La Vie.’

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It was good night in Cambridge. Overall we got quality sets from great bands at a good price. If I had my way, Protest the Hero would have played for a little longer than an hour and ten minutes. And maybe I should’ve gotten a couple of more economy suds from the bar before calling it a night. But all things considered, a highly enjoyable time.

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Battlecross on Facebook

The Safety Fire on Facebook

Intervals on Facebook

Words: Hansel Lopez

Photos: Chris Small of CWS Photography