Wizard's blog

Album Review: Scream Arena - "Scream Arena"

Have you ever had to put yourself out in front of other people to be judged? I think just about everybody has. Whether it was an oral report in school or a project at work, it's never easy to stand up and let people critique something you've worked hard on. It's even more difficult for an artist. Good art comes from the soul. You spend a lot of time working, practicing, honing your skills but, eventually, if you want to take your craft to the next level, you've got to put it out there and let it be judged by the masses. People you don't even know are evaluating your soul.

Album Review: Pilgrim - "II:Void Worship"

Take a look around. Everything seems to be moving so quickly. Today's world is a fast paced, go-go, what's next, sort of place. We should all strive to take a few moments to slow things down a bit. Fortunately, we now have a soundtrack to help us achieve that very thing and it comes in the form of the new album by the Rhode Island based doom metal trio known as Pilgrim, "II: Void Worship".

"II: Void Worship" is a sequel to their first album, "Misery Wizard" which I was unfamiliar with prior to hearing this new album. So, this was my introduction to Pilgrim.

Album Review: Bigelf - "Into The Maelstrom"

Alright, class. The subject we'll be discussing this week is a genre commonly referred to as "progressive metal". When I hear the word "progressive" I think of acts like Rush and King Crimson. Technically, Fates Warning and Queensryche are also classified as progressive along with one of the most successful progressive metal acts, Dream Theater. Add to that list the album I'm reviewing today, "Into the Maelstrom" by Bigelf.

Album Review: Nocturnal Breed - "Napalm Nights"

Have you ever found an album that changed your life or, at least, changed the way you listen to music? An album so good that, when it ends, you just can't wait to play it again from the beginning? So have I. Unfortunately, "Napalm Nights" by Nocturnal Breed is not that album.

Album Review: Calabrese - "Born With A Scorpion's Touch"

My review for this week is a couple of days late but I've got a good reason. No, the dog did not eat my homework. I don't even have a dog. I have cats. I used to have a dog but that doesn't matter much now. The reason I'm late is because I changed my mind.

Album Review: Andi Deris - "Million Dollar Haircuts On Ten Cent Heads"

What makes a great album? There is no one thing that makes an album "great". Is it the quality of the music? The talent of the musicians? Sometimes, but some of my favorite albums were made by bands who were not what you would call "great musicians". The Misfits or The Ramones come to mind. Is it lyrical content? Again, sometimes but not necessarily. A song need not contain flowery prose or well executed poetry to make it great. So, what is it then? Art appreciation (and music, even metal, is certainly an art form) is subjective, to say the least.

Album Review: Kamchatka - "The Search Goes On"

Kamchatka - A 1250 kilometer volcanic peninsula in the Russian Far East located between the Bering Sea and the Sea of Okhotsk. Also, Kamchatka is the name of a blues rock trio out of Sweden. I'll let you guess which of the two I'll be discussing this week. I'll give you a hint - it's not a land mass.

Album Review: Battleaxe - "Heavy Metal Sanctuary"

"Behold the rock of ages. There stands the gates of steel where destiny awaits us - heavy metal sanctuary" - Battleaxe. Metal is as much a lifestyle as it is a musical genre. Metal is a brotherhood that can't be understood by non-metal fans. Put two metalheads in a room together and they will converse for hours about the origins and evolution of the music they love. Metal is life and life is metal. That seems to be the credo of the English metal band Battleaxe.

Album Review: Within Temptation - "Hydra"

I'm not one to actively seek out so-called "symphonic metal" bands but if I were Holland is the first place I'd start looking. I am part Dutch on my maternal Grandfather's side but I've never been to Holland. My question is "what in the world is happening over there?". A word of warning to the rest of the world - If you're thinking about getting into the symphonic metal game, you've got your work cut out for you. The Dutch metal band Within Temptation has nailed it with their latest album "Hydra".

Album Review: Red Tide Rising - "The Rising"

I really enjoy discovering new music, both from bands who have been around for a while and bands who are just starting out. Finding a band at the start of their career and following them as they ride the wave that is the music business is incredibly rewarding for me. Not to brag (well, maybe just a little) but I had the good fortune of hearing 311 (remember them?), Korn and Kid Rock before they hit the big time. This week I was given the opportunity to review the latest album from Denver's own Red Tide Rising.

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