Liv Sin, the rock band featuring former Sister Sin singer Liv Jagrell has entered the studio this week to begin working on the follow-up to her well-received debut album, Follow Me. Liv Jagrell Producer Emil Nödtveidt (Deathstars) will helm the album at Black Syndicate studios. The album will release via Despotz Records in 2019.Continue reading
The official lineup for the 2015 Rockstar Mayhem Festival has been confirmed and will be venturing out this summer. Watch the trail for the tour below:
The Devil Wears Prada
Thy Art Is Murder
Feed Her To The Sharks
2015 ROCKSTAR ENERGY DRINK MAYHEM FESTIVAL:
Jun 26: Sleep Train Amphitheater – San Diego, CA
Jun 27: San Manuel Amphitheater – San Bernardino, CA
Jun 28: Shoreline Amphitheater – Mountain View, CA
Jun 30: White River Amphitheater – Auburn, WA (Seattle)
Jul 01: Idaho Center Amphitheater – Boise, ID
Jul 03: Ak-Chin Amphitheater – Phoenix, AZ
Jul 04: Isleta Amphitheater – Albuquerque, NM
Jul 05: Red Rocks – Denver, CO
Jul 07: Harrah’s Council Bluffs – Council Bluffs, IA
Jul 08: Eagles Ballroom – Milwaukee, WI
Jul 10: Kilpsch Amphitheater – Noblesville, IN (Indianapolis)
Jul 11: DTE Energy Amphitheater – Clarkston, MI (Detroit)
Jul 12: First Midwest Bank Amphitheater – Tinley Park, IL (Chicago)
Jul 15: Molson Canadian Amphitheatre – Toronto, ON
Jul 17: Susquehanna Bank Arts Center – Camden, NJ (Philadelphia)
Jul 18: First Niagara Pavilion – Burgettstown, PA (Pittsburgh)
Jul 19: Xfinity Theatre – Hartford, CT
Jul 21: PNC Bank Arts Center – Holmdel, NJ
Jul 22: Meadowbrook (Bank of NH Pavilion) – Gilford, NH
Jul 24: Jiffy Lube Live – Bristow, VA
Jul 25: Xfinity Center – Boston, MA
Jul 26: Nikon at Jones Beach – Wantagh, NY
Jul 29: Aaron’s Amphitheater at Lakewood – Atlanta, GA
Jul 31: Whitewater Amphitheater – San Antonio, TX
Aug 01: Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion – Houston, TX
Aug 02: Gexa Energy Amphitheater – Dallas, TX
A Rockstar Mayhem Festival admat has began to leak with a rumored lineup similar to names previously leaked out. The official word is still supposedly coming on April 13, 2015, but the lineup reportedly includes:
The Devil Wears Prada
Victory Records stage:
Thy Art Is Murder
Feed Her To The Sharks
Ever since Hammerfall brought Glory To The Brave (via Nuclear Blast) by damn near single-handedly re-establishing traditional metal as a valid concern some 18 years ago, the traditional types of metal have existed in a vacuum. While even the most conservative of genres, thrash, updated itself in several directions via the urbanization and gangsterization of a Machine Head, or branched out into progressive and technical fields of your Voivod’s and Heathen’s, traditional metal (a sub-genre incorporating “HM”, Speed and Power Metal) seems happy to regurgitate the same tropes and styles ad infinitum.
I guess the clue is in the tag “traditional”…
Finland’s Battle Beast on their third album Unholy Saviour (Nuclear Blast) tick many boxes of the Speed Power Metal sub-genre confidently, continuing exactly where their second, self-titled album, finished; post-Stratovarius hard-rocking refrains punctuated with pacy Accept-influenced riffing, and peppered with rapid bursts of Pyry Vikki’s double-bass drum hurtle. Added to those ingredients are Noora Louhimo’s vocals, not a million miles away from Sister Sin’s Liv Jagrell (a band that Battle Beast share several aural similarities with) pitching from punchy mid-range to a powerful throaty higher register that give the band their quasi-distinctiveness and a USP.
As the album unfolds, it’s clear Battle Beast have three song types, the Symphonic Hard Rocker, such as opener ‘Lion Heart’, the ‘Freewheel Burning’ Speed Metal anthem of a ‘Speed And Danger’ and the softer, more delicate power ballad, of which ‘Sea of Dreams’ displays subtlety and grace and a softer tone to Noora’s voice, in a track that, while obvious in its dynamic climb, works despite its’ genericises.
With sprinkles of keyboards and dual guitars driving duelling descants, make no mistake the term derivate isn’t always a negative thing as Battle Beast do exactly what they set out to do, and this is a collection of well-crafted Hard Rocking Power Metal songs. The fact that there is nothing novel or innovative doesn’t have to put you off, it’s just a matter of whether you have room in your collection for an album that does exactly what you expect it to, that will share characteristics with several of its bed-fellows and is, ultimately, the very definition of “if you liked this band before, you’ll like this, if you didn’t there’s nothing on here that’ll change your mind”.
7.0 / 10
With one black leather thigh-high boot in the hard rock camp, and the other stomping down on the metal side of the fence, comes the confident swagger of Swedish quartet Sister Sin. Following hard on the heels of a successful second stage Bloodstock headline performance this year, it’s easy to see why the band are self-assured, as the headbanging ‘Food For Worms’ launches their fifth album Black Lotus (Victory).
Vocalist Liv Jagrell has bark, bite and edge in her voice, a metal snarl that stays around the mid-range, as the Scandinavians impart an album of no-surprises rock/metal that doesn’t just throwback, but whole-heartedly engages in the worship of the days of Accept and Dio. While comparisons with Doro may seem too obvious (and I tried my damnedest to avoid them), nonetheless ‘Desert Queen’ and ‘Ruled By None’ are smack bang in Pesch territory. Pleasingly, though, Sister Sin aren’t adverse to chucking the odd curveball in, as the more epic ‘Count Me Out’ inspires thoughts of Tony Martin era Sabbath jamming with Metal Church and the countrified ballad ‘The Jinx’ is a good tune which shows Sister Sin have chops, as it would have been easy to have car-crashed going down that particular alley.
At this stage in the game, while it’s too late to expect anything special from Sister Sin, it would be churlish to discount them completely as they are a whole-hearted and exceptionally competent act who deliver gratifying, committed hard rocking heavy metal like it’s going out fashion. I guess the problem is, we know it went out of fashion twenty years ago and came back stronger and more diverse than ever shortly after. We also know The Gods Made Heavy Metal, and that it’s never gonna die, so considering the tumults of great out there, it’s difficult to champion a release that is Top C grade in the grand scheme of things when there are so many A Grade acts out there doing something more interesting.
There is absolutely nothing wrong with Black Lotus. It scratches an itch, but does so in the same non-permanent way that countless others do.
Following on from their self-released debut album Reformation in 2013, Poughkeepsie, NY based Meridian have been gathering an impressive following across America in the past year. Despite their age, with every member of the band being under 21, this fresh out of high school quintet have already landed themselves a spot on the roster of Victory Records for their sophomore album The Awful Truth alongside bands such as A Day to Remember, Ill Nino and Sister Sin.
It seems there is an endless procession of bands proclaiming that they have emerged as saviors of a genre recently, and this band is no exception stating Meridian was formed to save a dying scene. Despite these claims, the band doesn’t rigidly stick within the confines of one genre, rooting themselves in hardcore, but mixing in lashings of metalcore and a distinct pop sensibility. It’s not too often you find an abrasive genre like hardcore mixed in with the catchy nuances of pop music, and this album proves this is for good reason. Their attempts to tackle hard-hitting topics like depression and childhood neglect are marred by catchy pop vocal lines that distract from their message. The impact is lost under layers of auto-tune and awkward breakdowns.
Although the vocals generally dominate each track, switching between screams and clean melodic lines they are quickly revealed as the weakest part of the music. The screams lacking depth and cleans are over-embellished which rapidly proves irritating. While the catchy quality may gather a teen following, their music creates very little impact for the more seasoned hardcore listener.