Mastodon Performs a New Song – “Skelton of Splendor” and Rarities at Their Unplugged Livestream


Mastodon aired their incredible livestream event – Mastodon – Captured Live at the Georgia Aquarium this past week on July 15th, 2021 you can watch the replay through tonight, July 18th. In addition to some deep cuts, and their nautical themed tracks given the setting, the band played a brand new song from their upcoming, as yet untitled, new album. “Skeleton of Splendor” is dedicated to the bands’ late manager Nick John, who died in 2018 from Pancreatic Cancer. In fact the entire new album is dedicated to Nick, as described by Brann Dailor and Troy Sanders. Continue reading


Five Finger Death Punch, Rob Zombie, Shinedown, Breaking Benjamin, Limp Bizkit, and More Confirmed for Blue Ridge Rock Festival


Quickly shaping up to be the biggest music festival in the USA this year, Blue Ridge Rock festival has announced their full line-up of 180 bands. Headlining the massive 4 day festival are Five Finger Death Punch, Rob Zombie, Shinedown, Breaking Benjamin, and Limp Bizkit. There is a special club warm up show which includes headliner Ludacris, T-Pain, and Lil Jon. Also on tap: the Hellzapoppin Circus Sideshow Revue, a vaudeville freak show of wonder by Hellzapoppin’s Ringleader and Producer, Mr. Bryce “The Govna” Graves. In addition, excitingly, the festival will be hosted by Steve-O (MTV’s Jackass); and special guest Lou Brutus (SiriusXM). The fest takes place September 9th – 12th at Blue Ridge Amphitheater, a long-awaited large-scale concert venue in Southwest Virginia. Tickets are on sale now at the link below and here is the full lineup:

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ALBUM REVIEW: Iceburn – Asclepius


Well, that was quite the trip, but in like, a good way. There wasn’t some breakthrough moment of introspective self-discovery or anything of the sort for me but making it through Asclepius (Southern Lord) does feel nice. Where these songs written well ahead of time or were they discovered and jammed out through the recording process? Don’t know and don’t quite care. Iceburn somehow made it work and sound natural.

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Rob Zombie, Chevelle, Mastodon, Black Stone Cherry, Tremonti, and More booked for Debut Voragos Lunasea Beach Cruise and Festival


Long in the works, and presented by Danny Wimmer presents and Sixth Man Cruises, Voragos Lunasea Beach Cruise and Festival promised an innovative exciting approach to music cruises and destination festivals. The inaugural voyage sets sail on the Norwegian Pearl during sea days (February 16, 17, 19, and 20) are as follows (subject to change) that features Rob Zombie, Chevelle, Mastodon, Black Stone Cherry, Tremonti, Saint Asonia, New Years Day, Amigo the Devil, DED, Fire From The Gods, Jeris Johnson, Amigo The Devil, Joyus Wolf and more! There is also with an EXCLUSIVE all-day festival on land on Feb. 18th. The public on sale begins on June 4th, 2021 and the pre0-sale is on now, all at the links below.

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ALBUM REVIEW – Boss Keloid – Family The Smiling Thrush


Following up a breakthrough album, such as Boss Keloid’s last opus Melted On The Inch (Holy Roar) which finished at #4 in Ghost Cult’s Album of the Year poll in 2018, is a challenging proposition. Stray too far from the magic formula and you risk undoing that giant stride taken forwards (even without being a band that has always taken efforts to ensure development and evolution of their sound is a given); repeat the previous approach and accusations of diminishing returns, or playing it safe, abound along with an invariably inferior product. Continue reading


ALBUM REVIEW: Mothman And The Thunderbirds – Into The Hollow


Ever since I was a kid, I have had a deep interest in cryptozoology. While I can accept most of these hypothetical creatures as misidentifications or outright fabrications as an adult, there is still the part of me that likes to imagine the possibilities. As a musician myself, a cryptozoology-themed band has also been on my bucket list for a long time. I’m sure plenty of bands with that sort of theming are out there, but the debut album from Mothman And The Thunderbirds makes for a particularly interesting variation.

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Metallica, Nine Inch Nails, Disturbed, Rob Zombie, Deftones, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Lamb Of God, Staind, STP, and More Booked for Welcome To Rockville



“Florida’s Biggest Rock Experience” is back as Welcome To Rockville has announced its lineup for 2021. The fest is now four days and takes place for the first time later in the year in November 11-14 At Daytona International Speedway In Daytona Beach, Florida. Bands announced to perform include headliners Metallica (two nights) and Disturbed, along with Rob Zombie, Deftones, Lynyrd Skynyrd, Lamb Of God, Social Distortion, The Offspring, Staind, Mudvayne, Cypress Hill, Chevelle, Mastodon, Stone Temple Pilots, Asking Alexandria, and many more.

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Mastodon Shares New Song “Forged By Neron” – from The Dark Nights: Death Metal Soundtrack


Mastodon has sharted a brand new song, “Forged By Neron” out today as part of the continued roll-out of The Dark Nights: Death Metal Soundtrack to their animated motion-comics series and popular DC Comics series. Executive Produced By Tyler Bates (“Guardians of the Galaxy,” “Watchmen,” “John Wick”) and out digitally 18th June with a physical version arriving 16th July Via Loma Vista Recordings. Pre-orders are live now at the link below. The soundtrack is a first of its kind, with new original Songs By Mastodon, Manchester Orchestra, Denzel Curry, Soccer Mommy, Health, Carach Angren, GUNSHIP, Idles, Chelsea Wolfe and more. Check out the artwork and the Mastodon song right now!

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Aftershock Festival Adds the Original Misfits As the New Saturday Night Headliner


 

Aftershock, a festival part of the Danny Wimmer Presents family of events, has announced that The Original Misfits will be the new Saturday Night Headliner, following the departure of My Chemical Romance from the fest due to the pandemic. The original Misfits had booked a slew of arena shows and festival slots in North America from 2018 to 2020. Aftershock also features Metallica as the headliner the other two nights of the fest. Tickets are on sale now. Recent additions to the festival bill now are Limp Bizkit, Rancid, The Offspring, Social Distortion, Rise Against, Volbeat, Machine Gun Kelly, Mastodon, Gojira, SEETHER, Parkway Drive, and many more. A special first time ever Thursday night date, presented by Jack Daniels, is headlined by Limp Bizkit and also hosts Parkway Drive, Testament, Hatebreed, Exodus, Knocked Loose and Fit For a King. Brought to you by Danny wimmer Presents, the West Coast’s Biggest Rock Festival–to Discovery Park in Sacramento, CA on October 7, 8, 9 and 10. Passes are on sale now at the link below and you can watch a special trailer video now.

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ALBUM REVIEW: Hammerhedd – Grand Currents


The biggest challenge for prodigious talents Henry, Eli, and Abe Ismert is the need to shift the narrative from discussion around their ages (18, 16 and 13 respectively) and their undoubted potential to the types of plaudits and eulogies that adorn the releases of the artists they aspire to be considered in the same breath as; the Mastodon’s and Gojira’s of our twisted, alternative Metal world. Previously released via Bandcamp in the COVID-restricted summer of 2020, the brothers from Kansas City are re-issuing their debut Grand Currents (self-released) on the back of a groundswell of support for singles ‘Sediment’ and ‘Foundation’, this time accompanied by a physical release.

An album of peaks and valleys, when flying high Grand Currents achieves that aim of refocusing the story to one of deserved acclaim. A twisted post-Thrash underbelly is a tough core that provides a grounding to a progressive modern Metal mentality, holding the expansive sensibilities on a tight leash that the brothers may do better to loosen on further releases. For it is those moments that seek to crack the skye that do Hammerhedd the most credit: halfway through ‘Drone’ and the Voivod-ian cortex wraps itself around a rhythmic Tool-esque build, or the discordant judder of the back-nine of ‘Sediment’. When they indulge their musical expressionism they really show their hand and talk of potential begins to be realised.

Yet, their greatest weapon also highlights their greatest shortcoming. While Henry Ismert is expansive and able to find twisted barbs in his guitar work, exploring spaces that Mastodon and Helmet have opened up, his rudimentary vocal output undermines both the finished artistic product, and the bands reach and appeal. To make the step that Hammerhedd (and let’s be honest, the band name doesn’t help either but we’re probably too far down that line to unwind that one…) could potentially make and to invade the alternative conscience in the ways the aforementioned other Progressive Metal leading lights have, they will need to find a way to bring the vocal performance up to the technical level of the other instruments on display, in a way the ideas and musical vision deserves.

Still, time is on their side. And Grand Currents possesses more than just flashes of potential. It does intimate there is more to come, yes, which can only be a good thing, and it is also a valid and worthwhile investment of your time, even if only to have been onboard for if and when they do find a way to raise the vocals to the level of the other instruments somewhere down the line.

Buy the album here: https://linktr.ee/hammerhedd​

6 / 10

STEVE TOVEY