There’s no talking about Blind Golem’s first full-length album without mentioning Uriah Heep. The Italians initially began as a Heep tribute band and desired to write their own music in a similar Seventies Rock style, going so far as to give the artwork that Demons and Wizards aesthetic and even getting Ken Hensley himself to record keyboards and slide guitar just months before his tragic passing. A Dream Of Fantasy (MaRaCash Records) makes for an inevitably derivative listen with that established, but it is also an undeniably infectious labor of love.
Consisting entirely of musicians from the eccentric Demon Bitch with equally esoteric pseudonyms, Detroit’s White Magician settles firmly into the world of heavy Occult Rock on their first full-length album. “The Agents Of Fortune”-esque cover art is enough to indicate that any comparisons to Blue Öyster Cult are likely intentional; the band exercises a similarly freerolling attitude with an ominous undercurrent. But while Dealers Of Divinity (Cruz Del Sur Music) gambles on a well-trod formula, the group seems to have a couple of aces up their sleeves.
Butterfly’s full-length debut isn’t the least bit shy about its Seventies Rock inspirations. That is made immediately apparent with the cover art contrasting Vikings and a mystical title with an innocuous band name, but the music plays out like a grab-bag of Montrose, Uriah Heep, and Budgie among others. Its free-spirited attitude is comparable to their contemporaries in Freeways and one can occasionally detect hints of otherworldly haziness in line with Tanith and Brimstone Coven.Continue reading
Bad news for Judas Priest fans in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Their show tomorrow night, June 5th at Broadmoor Arena is canceled, due to illness. Rob Halford is suffering Bronchitis and cannot perform. He has been fighting the illness for over a week and now doctors have told him he needs full rest so his voice can recover. The bands’ North American tour, with special guests Uriah Heep, is scheduled to resume on Saturday, June 8 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada.Continue reading
Heavy Metal legends Judas Priest have booked a new North American tour for next spring. Uriah Heep will open all shows. Kicking off on May 3 at the Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida and wrapping up on June 29 at The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel in Las Vegas, Nevada. The band will also perform at festivals in the USA, like the just-announced Welcome To Rockville. Priest continues to support their album Firepower (Epic) from earlier this year. Continue reading
Mid-September officially sees the start of Crazy Season for album releases… But don’t worry, we’ve got you covered here at Ghost Cult with our round-up of some of this weeks and last weeks albums that may just have escaped your attention, for better or for worse…
Hailing from the east of Germany, Thuringia to be precise, and purveyors of psychedelic doom are Motorowl. Their new album Atlas follows in the footsteps of their 2016 debut Om Generator (both on Century Media Records): metal with fuzzy guitars, doom-laden riffs, meandering, sometimes spacey, sometimes carnivalesque, keyboards and a thick sense of melancholy.Continue reading
Remastering albums is a tricky business. For every perceived mistake or fault which gets cleaned up, smoothed over, or completely erased; for every tweak or alteration to the mix, there will always be listeners who prefer the original, no matter what. Trying to improve a recording can often lead to losing the charm of the original, and so as much as record label Nuclear Blast have given a significant portion of Blind Guardian‘s discography a deserved facelift here, the results will lie purely in the eye (or in this case, the ear) of the beholder.Continue reading
Congrats to the iconic King Diamond and his wife, Livia Zita, who are now the proud parents of a son named Byron. Continue reading
Over the course of the past year or so, many metal heads in the New England area have went from never seeing the great King Diamond, to seeing the master twice in a short few months. However, November 24th was a night that will stick out to all fans whether this was the third time, fifth time, or even the first time seeing King. This time around, we were all treated to the entire Abigail album from front to back, live right in front of our very eyes. As if that was not sweet enough the thrash titans, Exodus, were slated to open the night and get everyone up out of the Orpheum seats.
Exodus kicked off the night to a fair mix of old and new tracks to get all of the fans, young and old, warmed up for what promised to be a great night. The Boston crowd enjoyed newer tracks from the thrash legends including: ‘Blood In, Blood Out’ , ‘Body Harvest’ , and ‘Blacklist’. The longer tenured fans of course got the typical (of late) three track closing rotation of ‘Bonded by Blood’ , ‘The Toxic Waltz’ , and ‘Strike of the Beast’. The only downside of the performance was the inability to actually do the Toxic Waltz while standing in place amongst the rows of seats.
After a short intermission, and ‘The Wizard’ by Uriah Heep over the PA, King Diamond and his cohorts made their way to the stage. King started off the set with a short selection of King Diamond classics like ‘Welcome Home’ , one of my favorites ‘Halloween’ , and ‘Eye of the Witch’. Of course, what would be a King Diamond show without some Mercyful Fate covers? King was happy to oblige with staple ‘Come to the Sabbath’ and a slight change to the usual covers with the epic ‘Melissa’. And then it started, ‘Funeral’ over the PA while the band switched out instruments. It was time for Abigail! Druids came out with a casket with the infant corpse of Abigail inside to which King was happy to hold up the crowd in praise. Track by track the story of Abigail went. From ‘Arrival’ and ‘The Family Ghost’ to ‘Omens’ and ‘Abigail’, the Boston metal heads sang/screeched (and I mean screeched out those falsettos) each and every lyric to each song. But, like all great things, ‘Black Horsemen’ had come and gone as the band said their goodbyes, threw out guitar pics, and made their exit until the next time.
Most would say seeing any band three times in a year is too much. Some days I may even agree to that sentiment, but not towards King Diamond. Even if this was not the Abigail Tour and just another headlining run for the King and Company, I would still have gone. If you have yet to make it to a King Diamond show, you should feel bad and then catch the next one!
WORDS BY TIM LEDIN