heavy metal

Questions and Answers with Alexis Brown of Straight Line Stitch

It’s been a long road for Tennessee’s Straight Line Stitch, from limited releases to changing lineups to grueling tours in dirty clubs. Now tapped to play as part of the Rockstar Energy Drink Mayhem Festival, the band feels like they’re come over a crest in their career. Taking a minute off from promoting their new album “The Fight of Our Lives,” singer Alexis Brown talked with me about music, women in heavy metal, and a copious amount of horror cinema.
When you released “When Skies Wash Ashore” in 2008, it had been after a long uphill battle for exposure. How does it feel to release “The Fight of Our Lives” already having that installed fan base?
It feels great to have released this latest record after all the bullshit drama we've gone through and experienced, because it's living proof that all our efforts are now starting to really pay off and show fruition. Don't get me wrong, it's still a fight everyday but like in anything it's more so now a fight worth fighting.

Album Review: Autopsy - "Macabre Eternal"

Over all the years, projects, lineups, albums and EPs, Chris Reifert has become nothing if not the picture of consistency. Reunited with original Autopsy members Danny Coralles and Eric Cutler, and joined by Joe Trevisano of Abscess, Autopsy has released “Macabre Eternal,” the band’s latest unapologetic assault on musical convention, trend and quite possibly good taste.

Album Review: Gallhammer - "The End"

Huh. *shrug*

That’s my reaction to Gallhammer’s new album, “The End.” Cut down from three members to two after the departure of Mika Penetrator, the all-girl Japanese metal band has set out to try and push the boundaries of black and doom metal.

What’s become clear about Gallhammer over their existence is that front woman Vivian Slaughter does not give a damn about image, convention or traditional roles. She and the band are much more preoccupied with musical atmosphere and trolling the deep corners and shadowy depths of doom metal.

Album Review: Red Fang - Murder the Mountains

Red Fang’s sophomore effort “Murder the Mountains” is a wonderfully experimental, anything-goes affair that approaches the mores of kick-ass rock and roll with open eyes and robust vitality.

A product of musically oft-overlooked Portland, Oregon, Red Fang inked a deal with reprise Records, and was immediately paired with known producer Chris Funk. Funk’s previous experience with the Decemberists raises some eyebrows, but his steady hand makes a difference on the overall consistency of “Murder the Mountains” without changing the music’s intent.

Concert Review - Danzig

It seemed somehow appropriate that a crowd had gathered for a Danzig show on what Edward Bulwer-Lytton once called "a dark and stormy night." As the winds howled and raged and rain pounded upon gathered concertgoers awaiting admittance, those inside were greeted by the cloaked vestiges of Danzig's staging.

Heavy Metal News Updates!

*Camp OZZY will be releasing a 30th anniversary remastered edition of "Blizzard of Ozz" and "Diary of a Madman." The two will release on May 31st in multiple editions, and will be available on CD or vinyl. A 30th anniversary limited edition box set will also be released, featuring a coffee-table book, double-sided wall poster, replica of Ozzy's gigantic gold cross, previously unreleased studio and live tracks, and the "Thirty Years After the Blizzard" DVD.

Concert Review - Avenged Sevenfold

The show began with a hanging. The crowd cheered.

We’ll get back to that in a minute. Roughly an hour before the body was hung from the rafters and following a solid, capable performance by veterans Sevendust, Three Days Grace took to the stage. Capturing the attention of the largely teen crowd, the band rode through a complete set of their (remarkably similar) singles, the highlight being 2006’s “Pain.”

Concert Review - Volbeat

Back in November of 2009, I saw an up and coming band called Volbeat open for the legends known as Metallica. At the time, I confessed ignorance to the band; I knew their name, and I knew they were Danish, and that was about it.

Album Review: Winterus - "In Carbon Mysticism"

Hailing from oft-overlooked Kalamazoo, Michigan, the band originally known as The Ancient changed their name to Winterus and released this new full-length studio album, “In Carbon Mysticism.”

The album is an intriguing exploration of some of the farther corners of common territory between black and death metal. While not exactly revolutionary on either count, Winterus manages to cover a curious bit of ground through a combination of intricate layering and deceptively simple progressions.

Album Review: As We Fight/The Psyke Project - "Ebola" Split EP

Oh, the split EP. Some of you, particularly the punk fans among you, will also recognize this gimmick as a “Versus” album, where two bands split the tracks and try to bring their best guns to bear. I’ve always tried to picture a split EP like some kind of heavy metal Sharks/Jets West Side Story knife fight, but…wait, what? More contemporary reference? What the hell do kids watch these days? Fine, I’ve always tried to picture it like a “Stomp the Yard” style showdown.

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