heavy metal

Anytime someone from the West is engaging Japanese media, there’s an intrinsic sense that anything and everything could happen.  Music from Japan in particular tends to not bend to the conventions of Western genre labels, so that implies that a single band can be a lot of things to a lot of people (see: The Mad Capsule Markets, or those teen girls who sang death metal in that one viral video.)  What we have here with Vamps is a Japanese alt-rock supergroup formed by members of the two of the island nation’s more popular bands – L’Arc~en~Ciel (that’s rainbow in French!  Not li

The word of the day is "eclectic" and the band that brings this word to mind is Von Hertzen Brothers. Regular readers of the Bloody Good Horror metal reviews know that my fellow reviewers and I delight in bringing you, the reader, the very best new metal bands from around the world. While the Von Hertzen brothers hail from Finland the music they play is not what the average listener would immediately think of as metal.

I've noticed a trend in power metal recently, where the genre is getting fractured in a way that does no one any favors.  On the one hand, there is a group of bands that are taking power metal in a darker, heavier, more modern direction.  While I like some of these bands, they largely suck the fun out of the music, which is one of the things that makes power metal special when done well.  On the other hand, there is another group of bands that has taken the term 'flower metal' to heart, and sucked all of the heaviness out of the music, which only serves to make it sound weak

This week we have another band that is not new but is new to me. It's California's own experimental-alternative-progressive metal band Chrysalis. An internet search will lead you to no fewer than four bands named Chrysalis, two from Germany, the oldest, dating back to the 60's, from Ithaca, NY and the one I'm listening to now from Southern California.

This SoCal incarnation of Chrysalis is a five member group comprised of vocalist Yessi Burton, guitarists Gabe Gallego  and Gabe Julian, Jared Sturgis on bass and drummer Billy Norris.

We’ve had this discussion several times over the years, but it bears repeating in this instance – metal will always provide a home for a band that indulges in the dingiest, sludgy depths of overdriven distortion and no holds-marred mayhem making.  For clarity’s sake, we’re not talking about the depravity of early Scandinavian black metal, but rather the destructive tendency of blues-based metal in the greater Black Sabbath family tree.  Kansas’ Midnight Ghost Train is such a band.

 

Ever since the death of 'real' rock and roll, and the rise of modern rock as we know it, there have been a few bands that have tried to resurrect the style and spirit of Guns N Roses, who are probably the last pure rock band to ever hold the status as the biggest band in the world.  The problem with almost all of these is that they either hold too close to the template to be of any artistic note, or they completely forget about the rich diversity Guns was able to showcase in their short career.  Doing sleazy rock and roll is easy, but none of the bands that found success did it ex

Metal fans have come to associate the name Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal with cutting edge projects in the genre.  He ended up being among the seeming thousands of faces that gave the world Guns ‘n’ Roses “Chinese Democracy,” made a guest appearance on the signature comeback album of Indestructible Noise Command and found some time to make an impact on the cutting edge coming-out party for Destrage last year.  That’s just a sampling of the times that Bumblefoot has graced music fans with his talent, but the eminent question then remains, what does this highly talented guitarist sound like

30 years ago, I never would have guessed that Scott Ian of Anthrax would become the Renaissance man that he is today. Musician, lyricist, television host, poker player, spoken word performer, father and now guitar player for the rock and roll band Mother Sister.

History has long taught us the axiom that ‘experience is the best teacher.’  That may explain the progress of Danko Jones on their new album “Fire Music,” the seventh full studio album in the band’s career, and possibly as a product of their figurative lifetime of experience, their most mature..  This new album is a much different experience than the band’s previous effort “Rock and Roll is Black and Blue” and mostly for the better. 

 

Metal has evolved in too many directions to count, but a hallmark of many of its offshoots is an increased propensity for technical virtuosity. In every sub-genre, as time goes on, there has been a focus on heightening the difficulty of the music, because there is a misguided belief (that I'm assuming was propelled by Guitar Hero) that the amount of finger-twisting riffs in a song has an impact on the quality of the music. I can't recall how often I've heard people who are fans of technical music criticizing other music for the basic fact that it wasn't hard to play.