Monday, December 30, 2013

"The Wrong Side of Heaven And The Righteous Side of Hell" by Five Finger Death Punch

As has been detailed a great many times on this silly blog of mine, there's been a long time disconnect with new music. Sadly metal has taken the brunt of my choice to pull back. Far too many of the bands have stupid names or they didn't look metal.

Real metal bands have name like Dying Fetus! They also have long hair without dreadlocks.

Well, Five Finger Death Punch doesn't dress metal. They don't have a metal look. The singer looks like the dad from That 70's Show and the drummer looks like he aged out of The Outsiders. (Just thinking out loud, is that Chutulu trying to kill the bass player?) So this divergence from what is traditionally considered metal would make the music crap right? Well, it was certainly high time to find out. No idea what the deal with Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 of this record is. It surely doesn't seem like this is an overarching concept album that takes two volumes to someone fill me in here....

Thursday, December 26, 2013

"Surgical Steel" by Carcass

Brutal mode: Engaged.Carcass has returned from the hell where they condemned themselves and I could not be happier.

Recently on Facebook, it was discussed how your friend and humble narrator got into death metal. During a Spanish II assignment in High School, my partner was a big death metal fan and he turned me onto it. Napalm Death, Carcass, Entombed, Obituary, etc.

Seeing the mighty Carcass return, brings warm feelings to my heart. Even if it's only really half of them. The original drummer, Ken Owen, had some pretty severe medical issues and could not participate in the reunion tours much less this new record. The classic Heartwork Lineup guitarist, Michael Arnott, later was a major part of Arch Enemy and did participate in the tours, but could not commit to the record and he went back to his main band taking drummer, Daniel Erlandsson with him.

Monday, December 23, 2013

"Temper Temper" by Bullet For My Valentine

These days the most music that is coming into my life is of the extreme metal variety. Reading Louder Than Hell will certainly do that though.

It's still absolutely ridiculous to separate all of the subgenres of metal though, but who are these guys? Everybody has at least heard their name.

This band is from Wales. Really? Who knew any metal came out of Wales? Though Wales's Henry's Funeral Shoe are also quite good, but not remotely metal. I suppose Wales is pretty brutal? Though Cardiff City FC can suck it.

"Temper Temper" is the fourth album released by these very angry Welshmen, but the name is still confusing. In this day and age, the metal fan has to accept that the vast majority of metal names have been taken and now the names are either not metal, or kind of out there and very long..... Well, this is my first go around with this band and let's see what there is to see.

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Kiss Gets Into The Hall of Fame, a Commentary

I learned today that Kiss has made the Rock'n'Roll Hall of Fame! You may recall that Kiss is my favorite band. Quickly I'm running out of reasons to be offended by the Museum in Cleveland.

I've long been a fan of Kiss. I remember having a copy of Killers on import cassette (no idea why) at age 8. I remember seeing them take their makeup off and seeing "Lick It Up" for the first time.

I have purchased every one of their albums, most of them twice at least. I have Kissology 1, 2, and 3 on my shelf and I'm angry that 4 hasn't arrived yet. I have KISStory signed by the four original members. I dressed in Kiss make up for a show my band did. I have seen at least five Kiss tribute bands. I went to see Kiss in Ace's make up. Simply put, I'm a big, big fan of this band.

Now comes the awkward part...there have been about seventy five people in and out of Kiss, both officially and unofficially. Which of them should be inducted? I'm going to give you a run down on all of the replacement members starting with Mr. Eric Carr.

Monday, December 16, 2013

"Deceiver of the Gods" by Amon Amarth

Looking at this album cover it really does have everything. The  name of the band is strange. (NOTE: Upon a google search, this band named themselves after the Sindarin name of Mt. Doom. Nerds. 2nd Note: I was defeated in Lord of the Rings trivial pursuit, again.) The font is unusual. The heavens have parted and a man with giant horns is taking on a god in battle.

Seriously, this is Iron Maiden level cover art here.

Though this was my first experience hearing this band, they are a long time veteran band who bills themselves as a "melodic death metal" band. They hail from Tumba, Sweden. We all remember Nathan Explosion's Iowa and Scandanavia comparison right? OK good. Well, with their having recently played in town supported by a couple acts I enjoy, checking them out seem the only logical thing to do.

Monday, December 9, 2013

"True North" by Bad Religion

Punk Rock? Well, it has never really been pleasing to me. Recently an explanation was given to me by a friend: Punk rock isn't exactly music, but it's almost an art form unto itself. What?

As someone who's always fancied himself a bit of a musician that has always admired virtuoso players, it is nearly impossible to swallow this concept. That's not the only issue. Beyond the lack of musicianship, and often musicality, there is a very serious lack of originality in the genre, at least in the group that gets famous outside of their punk rock peers. Seriously, how many guys with rooster mohawks have you seen doing Sid Vicious's trademark sneer? It has to be at least a dozen off the top of your head.

So Bad Religion? I didn't know they were still a going concern, but I do recall an interview I read in Guitar World that they did nearly twenty years ago. Crazy isn't it? It is now time to delve into their latest release "True North."

Monday, December 2, 2013

Device's Self Titled Debut

Have you ever seen a video posted on facebook and your first thought is "Woah, this is so good! When is the album coming out?" This is what happened to me when the video for Device's cover of "Close My Eyes Forever" started making the rounds. Lzzy Hale plays Lita on that track and it is awesome.

Now comes the point where your friend and humble narrator has to admit to something. He had no clue that this was a side project of David Draiman. Who even knew that Disturbed was still a thing as late as 2011?

David wanted to do something more industrial, but still metal like NIN (?? His words, not mine) and Ministry and this is the end result.

There is an amazing cast of characters guesting on the record: Serj, Tom Morello, the aforementioned Lzzy Hale, Geezer Butler, M. Shadows, and the incomparable Glenn Hughes.) It's a veritable who's who of heavy music from the old, the new, and the middle school!