You know that old idiom about never judging a book by its cover? Well, as with most things, there are always exceptions to the rule, and (swapping books for record sleeves) the new album by Arizona thrashers Flotsam and Jetsam is definitely one of those exceptions. With the band reintroducing their classic logo a few years ago, it was only a matter of time until they also resurrected their legendary mascot “Flotzilla”, and his return to the artwork for The End Of Chaos (AFM Records) instantly tells you everything you need to know about Flotsam and Jetsam in 2018. Continue reading →
In theory, the new Flotsam and Jetsam album Flotsam and Jetsam (AFM Records) should be called Regeneration. Their press brief says that the band really started in 2015 with the line-up of Eric AK, Mike Gilbert, Michael Spencer, Steve Conley, and Jason Bittner (Shadows Fall). For this, I gave Flotsam and Jetsam a fresh listen, forgetting the past albums and attacking Flotsam and Jetsam as a new separate entity. The new album Flotsam and Jetsam is twelve songs lasting 56 minutes. It’s an hour that goes quickly by as the tracks seamlessly blend from one song to another.
The first thing that struck me was the heaviness of opening track. ‘Seventh Seal’ is has a heaviness that weights it down. If it weren’t for the guitar lines and jaunty pace of the song, it could be a doom song. There is something about the song that claws at you and keeps you earthbound. ‘Life is a Mess’ has the same thundering drumming as ‘Seventh Seal’. The vocals have this nu-metal rap feel with 90s metal singing. I hear shades of Testament in the guitar parts. ‘Taser’ opens up like a muscle car on an open backwoods Texas road. It’s fast and it’s wild. The vocals are a bit strained, but the music more than makes up for it. ‘Taser’ has a swagger about it. I went into ‘Iron Maiden’ wanting to love it because I love Iron Maiden. True to form, it’s a Bruce Dickinson epic lyrics love fest. It’s a bit of the ‘Trooper’ in new clothes. I nice wink wink nudge nudge to a great band.
The rest of the album is more of the same. Solid tunes that follow the tried and true metal formula. Flotsam and Jetsam the album has lots of guitar solos in all the right places and heavy drumming and bass playing keep everything solid. Some of the songs are a bit chunky and plodding while others have interesting accoutrements. If you like Overkill and Testament, you’ll enjoy Flotsam and Jetsam.
Metal For Hire has added slew of new names to its already impressive roster. Now with the addition of current and former members of Arch Enemy, Blind Guardian, Nile, and Ministry; Metal For Hire now boasts an even greater who’s who of greats to help other artists realize their dreams. This follows two impressive rounds of announcements earlier this year. MFH helps musicians hire other well-known, top-tier professional artists.
Karl Sanders of Nile, by Meg Loyal Photography
New additions to Metal For Hire:
Alex Holzwarth – (Session Drums, Etc…) Rhapsody Of Fire Christopher Amott – (Session Guitars, Etc…) Arch Enemy, Armageddon Danny Finch – (Session Vocals, Etc…) Devilment, The Dead Soul Communion Jason Netherton – (Session Vocals, Etc…) Misery Index, Dying Fetus John Jarvis – (Session Guitars, Etc…) Pig Destroyer, Agoraphobic Nosebleed Karl Sanders – (Session Guitars, Etc…) Nile, Behemoth, Morbid Angel Marton Veress – (Live/Touring Drummer, Etc…) Armageddon, Pokolgep Oliver Holzwarth – (Bass Lessons, Etc…) Rhapsody Of Fire, Blind Guardian, Tarja Turunen Paul Ryan – (Guitar Lessons, Etc…) Origin Shawn Priest – (Session Drums, Etc…) Arsis, Winds Of Plague Sin Quirin – (Session Guitars, Etc…) Ministry, American Headcharge Steve Conley – (Session Guitars, Etc…) Flotsam And Jetsam