For as much flack as I got about my interest in heavy metal as a youth, it has done more to expand my intellectual horizons than any teacher I've ever had. Were it not for Metallica's "For Whom The Bell Tolls" I would probably not have discovered the work of Ernest Hemmingway. Chances are I would not have sought out the Samuel Taylor Coleridge poem "Rime of the Ancient Mariner" if not for the Iron Maiden song of the same name. Art and literature have often been part and parcel with heavy metal music.
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.
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.
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.
I wasn't sure what to expect from a French metal band, especially a French metal band named The Inspector Cluzo. But a strange thing happened to me while listening to The Inspector Cluzo's latest album "Gasconha Rocks". I liked it and I wanted more.
The songs on "Gasconha Rocks" are punk flavored. Somewhat in style but mainly in length. And the songs are good. Really good.
What I found surprising is The Inspector Cluzo is a band of two, count 'em, two members. The "band" is comprised of guitarist/vocalist Malcom Lacrouts and drummer/backing vocalist Phil Jourdain.
So here's how this week's review went down... I popped in the new album from Stormwitch, a band with which I was not familiar. I listened to it a couple of times, jotted down my thoughts and THEN moved on to the bands bio. Imagine how surprised I was to discover that not only is Stormwitch not a new band but they've been around for quite a long time. I had to double check my heavy metal encyclopedia.
I've got some good news and bad news for fans of the Canadian metal band The Agonist. Lead singer and founding member Alissa White-Gluz has departed the group to take over lead vocalist duties for Arch Enemy. But I said there's good news! She has been replaced by the outstanding Vicky Psarakis on the latest release from The Agonist, "Eye Of Providence".
“Well, art is art, isn't it? Still, on the other hand, water is water! And east is east and west is west and if you take cranberries and stew them like applesauce they taste much more like prunes than rhubarb does. Now, uh... Now you tell me what you know.” – Groucho Marx
Sometimes when I hear a band for the first time I find myself thinking about their motivation. Why did they choose this style of music? What is their ultimate goal for the band? For example, when James Hetfield and Lars Ulrich started Metallica their stated goal was to create the greatest rock and roll band in the world. Other bands have slightly less lofty goals such as, "I just wanna rock and roll, man".
Are you familiar with the Corrosion Of Conformity song "Diablo Boulevard" off of their "America's Volume Dealer" album? Well, the subject of this week's review is familiar with it. In fact, they liked the song so much they named their band Diablo Blvd. On a related note, "Diablo Boulevard" is actually a very good C.O.C. song. You should check it out. But enough about the song... on to the band.
Diablo Blvd is a group that formed in 2005 and they have just released their third full length EP titled "Follow The Deadlights".