Archive for current heavy metal albums

I SOLD MY LITA FORD “WICKED WONDERLAND” CD!

Posted in 1980's hair metal bands, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1980's heavy metal music, Album Review, annoying music, annoying rock albums, bad heavy metal albums, bad heavy metal purchase, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal music, everyday social experiences, hair metal music, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, heavy metal music shopping, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal vocalists, independent record labels, metal odyssey, Music, new heavy metal album, rock guitarists, rock music, scary album covers with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 5, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Lita Ford "Wicked Wonderland" small pic #2Yes! I got rid of it! I actually sold it! The “it” I am referring to is the absolutely annoying new album from Lita FordWicked Wonderland.  I foolishly bought the CD at Walmart for an even $10.00, (factor in the 6% sales tax and it set me back $10.60). The good Metal news is, I sold it today, finally! I brought it to f.y.e. and man, I never expected to get this much loot for it… f.y.e. took Wicked Wonderland off my hands for $6.25!! I’m NOT complaining. An extremely generous price that f.y.e. is, (for some reason), willing to pay for this CD. I was issued store credit towards other Metal purchases at f.y.e., a fine deal to me. Sure, I am out $4.35 at the end of the day, however, getting rid of this CD for any amount of money is a joyous Metal memory for me. I did state in my review, on this album, that I was definitely going to sell it… I actually held onto it for way too long.

I won’t get into the specifics as to why Wicked Wonderland is unentertaining here, (I could not put myself through writing about it a second time). You can read my fully detailed review about Wicked Wonderland on Metal Odyssey still… look for or type in – LITA FORD – “Wicked Wonderland” Is Naughty And Bad Combined. (That is the complete title of the review I posted on Metal Odyssey). At the end of the Metal day, all I can say to myself is phew, I rid my collection of some bad music. Bad. Hopefully something like this will never happen again.

MetalOdyssey

RAVAGE – “The End Of Tomorrow” – A Monster Of A Heavy Metal Album

Posted in Album Review, classic heavy metal, classic heavy metal albums, classic metal, collecting heavy metal albums, collecting metal music, collecting rock music, cool album covers, cover songs, creepy album covers, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal bands, current heavy metal music, essential heavy metal albums, essential heavy metal songs, essential metal music albums, halloween songs, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 2009, heavy metal bands from boston, heavy metal cover songs, heavy metal drummers, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal songs 2009, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music, metal music albums, metal music today, metal odyssey, Metal Reviews, Music, new heavy metal album, old school heavy metal, rock music, scary album covers, speed metal, spooky album covers, spooky metal album covers, thrash metal music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 22, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Ravage - Banner group photo  2009

Ravage is a Heavy Metal Band from Boston, (actually Malden), Massachusetts and is hell bent on keeping Classic Metal Music alive, loud and damn proud. Every song on this second album from Ravage, The End Of Tomorrow, (their Metal Blade Records debut, released on August 18, 2009), is writhing with Old School Heavy Metal influence. Ravage does a credible job at flexing their Metal muscles on each song, heavy, hard and speed are irreversible elements that dominate The End Of Tomorrow. No where is the Old School Heavy Metal influence more evident than in the cover of the Judas Priest classic – Nightcrawler. Ravage shows Judas Priest their deserved Metal respect by not ripping Nightcrawler to pieces with any unnecessary fills or excessiveness. A fabulous cover Ravage does with this song, Nightcrawler is a genius choice to add to their track list on this album, based on it’s creepy and dark theme.

I have found that, the more I listen to The End Of Tomorrow, the more I am being convinced that this album was released back around 1985. Alas, that is not such the Metal case… Ravage brings forth to 2009 the Heavy Metal song structures and ambiance of what I have come to expect from vintage Metal Church and early Judas Priest and Armored Saint albums, to name just a few Old Schoolers. After each listen to this album, it is very obvious that the members of Ravage have done their Classic Heavy Metal homework. Knowing and creating all of the heavy nuances of their influences only catapults quality and integrity, on an upmost consistent level throughout The End Of Tomorrow. The Halls Of Madness not only has a vintage Metal title, it also is quite the convincing Heavy Metal instrumental intro that brings back memories of early Helloween and Savatage, for me. There really is not a scapegoat song to point out on The End Of Tomorrow, all twelve songs have their own distinctive Metal bite, an album that I can hit play and let the Heavy Metal assault take it’s natural course. Excuse me for a Metal second as I proclaim The End Of Tomorrow as being a top favorite Heavy Metal album for me in 2009, in my Metal opinion. Ravage can play Heavy Metal… their original brand too… I would not tell a Metal lie.

Ravage "The End Of Tomorrow" tiny picReign Fall lyrically expresses the ghastly imagery of what happens to those who cannot think for themselves, wasting away at the mercy of ones very own doing. Reign Fall, as well as every song on The End Of Tomorrow, is a throwback Metal feast of melodic speed crashing into riffs that are beyond run of the mill. Al Ravage reminds me thoroughly of a young Rob Halford, (Judas Priest), intertwined with a young Paul Dianno, (of early Iron Maiden). Hey, I am by no means putting Al Ravage in this heroic class of Heavy Metal vocalists… (not yet anyways), what I am pointing out is Al Ravage can sing Heavy Metal with marked influences and originality combined. Ravage knows they are Old School, using this phrase so much doing a review may sound very redundant, yet for any veteran fan of Heavy Metal from yesteryear, you know just how juicy it can get when a new album excretes all things good about the glory days of MetalThe End Of Tomorrow is an unleashed monster of what I am talking about here.

My other favorite songs on this album are: The Grapes Of Wrath, which takes a Heavy Metal swipe at all the idiot talking heads on television, these plastic morons get called out on the Metal carpet by Al Ravage here rather eloquently. Plus, The Grapes Of Wrath is authentically memorable for my Metal mind, I just cannot shake this song out of my senses. The Shredder is another manifestation of early Judas Priest influence, only it takes on it’s own Ravage originality… reminding me of the Judas Priest classic – The Ripper, only The Shredder is absolutely not a knock off or copy cat by any means. The End Of Tomorrow is one powerful way to conclude this album, fittingly the title song… lyrically doom laden, the end result is a reality check on the life we are leading and living now. The End Of Tomorrow has a Power Metal approach that echos of great Heavy Metal triumphs to come in the future for this killer “new” band they call Ravage.

Ravage, as they appear on The End Of Tomorrow:

Al Ravage on lead vocals

Eli Firicano on lead and rhythm guitars

Nick Izzo on lead and rhythm guitars

G.T.B. on drums

Howie Snow on bass

Track Listing for The End Of Tomorrow:

The Halls Of Madness

Reign Fall

Freedom Fighter

Damn Nation

The Shredder

Into The Shackles

In Shattered Dreams

The Nightmare’s Hold: Part One

Nightcrawler

The Nightmare’s Hold: Part Two

Grapes Of Wrath

The End Of Tomorrow

C’mon, is this album cover OLD SCHOOL HEAVY METAL or what? Not only does the Heavy Metal of Ravage stand on it’s own, (they could have issued a plain blue cover and that would not change the quality of Metal songs heard inside one bit), yet man, this is cool throwback artwork happening here. I cry out a huge Metal bravo! – to artist Edward J. Repka for creating a REAL Heavy Metal album cover for Ravage.

Ravage - "The End Of Tomorrow" x-large pic

MY SUPER WALMART FINALLY PUT OUT KISS “SONIC BOOM” TODAY, OCTOBER 6, 2009

Posted in 1970's classic rock albums, 1970's classic rock bands, 1970's classic rock songs, 1970's hard rock bands, 1970's classic rock music, 1970's heavy metal, 1970's heavy metal albums, 1970's heavy metal music, 1970's rock music, 1980's classic rock bands, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1990's heavy metal bands, classic hard rock, classic heavy metal, classic heavy metal albums, classic rock, classic rock albums, classic rock bands, classic rock music, classic rock songs, collecting classic rock, collecting heavy metal albums, collecting music, collecting rock music, cool album covers, current hard rock albums, current heavy metal albums, essential hard rock albums, essential heavy metal albums, hard rock music, hard rock music 2009, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 2009, heavy metal bands this decade, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, heavy metal vocalists, metal odyssey, Music, old school hard rock, old school heavy metal, rock and roll, rock music, vintage heavy metal albums, vintage heavy metal bands, vintage rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 7, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

MetalOdysseyIt’s always great to vent. Vent I did in my last post – where I needed over 1,100 words to express my disappointment in not being able to purchase the new KISS CD – Sonic Boom at my local Super Walmart on October 6, 2009, (the release date for it). Just as I hoped for and predicted, at 4:00 p.m. EST, I entered the Trexlertown, Pennsylvania, Super Walmart and took hold of my very own copy of Sonic Boom. (Phew). I can now say I bought this new KISS CD on it’s release date… yes, it means something to me. I have my core Heavy Metal and Hard Rock Bands that I have followed for decades, when they release a new album I try my very best to buy it on the release day. Metal case closed. I went to this Super Walmart twice during the morning of October 6, (the release date), my last visit was at 9;30 a.m. EST, as I left empty handed. I will say this much… the packaging for this Sonic Boom CD is INCREDIBLE!  Once I get to crank up Sonic Boom for a couple of listens, I will post my Metal jubilation. Here are some quick tidbits about my Sonic Boom shopping experience at Super Walmart, plus other related notes:

* I give credit where credit is due – Sonic Boom, is being sold (exclusively) at Walmart for a cool $12! The credit is the price of $12 – not the “exclusive” part.

* As a 3 disc set, Sonic Boom is: disc 1 – is 11 new KISS songs! disc 2 – is 15 KISS Klassics! (re-recorded with the current KISS lineup and disc 3 – is a DVD of KISS live in Buenos Aires! Not too shabby for $12!

* The Sonic Boom digipak opens up four times across – 4 panels! With each KISS member having his own image on a panel. Cool.

* The liner notes are a Metal kick! 20 pages of complete lyrics! A center photo spread of the entire KISS Band! Facsimile autographs of each KISS member are on the center spread photo as well. (They aren’t real autographs just to make it very clear). Cool enough for me. These liner notes are like a Sonic Boom mini-book.

* There is a KISS KORNER after all! (It did not exist at my Super Walmart the morning of October 6th). My daughters actually found it… up in front of the store, just in front of one register lane. It is not as big as I anticipated, still it is cool enough for me. You can buy a complete set of KISS cards, (33 card set), that are inside a very cool box. I bought the Gene Simmons box version… it has the classic Gene Simmons “The Demon” face all over it. There are also some crazy looking KISS character dolls, blankets and tee shirts too. The blankets and tee shirts have the Sonic Boom album cover artwork all over them! I was unfortunately pressed for time on my third trip to Super Walmart today, therefore on my next visit there I will inspect the KISS KORNER thoroughly, making certain I know of every little KISS goodie that is available to buy.

* The Sonic Boom CD was in the front rack of the CD aisle – filed under new releases. Sonic Boom also was found in the area of CD’s which housed the re-issued Beatles CD’s for the last couple of weeks. Sorry, Beatles. (And I do revere the Beatles). Again, this was not the case at this Super Walmart on my first two trips there that morning. No Sonic Boom CD’s were in sight between 8:00 and 9:30 a.m. EST.

* Another credit goes to Walmart – you can buy KISS CD’s from their 1970’s catalog for – $5!!! You read that right… five bucks man! I did not see or find any 1980’s KISS CD’s for this price. That is cool, for the CD’s priced at $5 that I did see were: Dressed To Kill, Hotter Than Hell and Rock and Roll Over. These KISS CD’s might have been the first batch or whatever to get into this Super Walmart, the selection hopefully will grow into the whole catalog of KISS CD’s. Again, these were the only KISS CD’s that I for certain identified and were there for $5.

Am I still upset with Super Walmart for not having Sonic Boom stocked at 8:00 and then 9:30 a.m. EST – the morning of it’s release? You bet I am. This is not the first time I have gone to this Super Walmart on a new release Tuesday… several times in the past few years I have had to make a return trip later in the day, (or go to Best Buy, Target or f.y.e. instead), to get a newly released CD that I wanted to initially buy at Super Walmart. This instance where it involved the new KISS Sonic Boom, well, it just was the Metal straw that broke the donkey’s back for me. The service or vendor that Walmart uses to stock their CD’s should be held accountable for failing to get new releases on the shelves before the doors open to the public. I still hope Gene Simmons would somehow get wind of this blunder that has occurred at Super Walmart in Trexlertown, Pennsylvania… it’s the fans that get screwed out of enjoying Sonic Boom for the whole first day of it’s release like I did.  I guess you just can’t get between, (or mess with), a middle aged, (male), Metalhead and his adoration and loyalty to KISS.

KISS "Sonic Boom" x-large album pic 2009

ACE FREHLEY IS BACK! “ANOMALY” ALBUM IS PROOF BY QUANTUM LEAPS!

Posted in 1970's classic rock bands, 1970's hard rock bands, 1970's heavy metal, 1980's classic rock bands, 1980's classic rock guitarists, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1990's heavy metal bands, Album Review, classic hard rock, classic heavy metal, classic rock, classic rock music, collecting music, cool album covers, cover songs, current hard rock albums, current heavy metal albums, current rock albums 2009, essential hard rock albums, essential heavy metal albums, essential rock albums, guitar legends, hard rock album review, hard rock guitarists, hard rock music 2009, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal cover songs, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal solo albums, heavy metal solo artists, heavy metal solo vocalists, heavy metal songs 2009, Metal, metal odyssey, Music, old school hard rock, old school heavy metal, rock and roll, rock guitarists, rock music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 24, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Ace Frehley "Anomaly" small album picAce Frehley has waited a long time to create and produce a new album, Anomaly is so incredibly worth the wait. I finally bought Anomaly today, (September 23, ’09, yeah, I am a week late from it’s release date), what an album of 12 songs. An unreal good album, a can’t miss for any fan of any Rock genre. I cannot stop listening to this new Ace Frehley album, oh darn. Anomaly for me, is one of those albums that I get contagious about and addicted to… oh darn. Before buying this album, I had not a clue as to what any of the songs sounded like. Man, what an incredible surprise to hear these songs for the first time… this album leans more towards Ace Frehley’s 1978 KISS solo album – not towards the sound of his Frehley’s Comet band from the late 1980’s. The Metal kicker is this… Anomaly rocks harder and heavier than the Ace Frehley 1978 KISS solo album, my ears cannot tell a lie. Where Anomaly gives a nod to 1978 is this: Old School Hard Rock and Heavy Metal. With that being said, Anomaly definitely embodies the grooves and heaviness of today’s Heavy Metal sound, while veering away from any resemblance of late 1980’s commercial heavy sound that was so popular in it’s day.

Ace Frehley - KISS solo pic smallAs I listen to Ace Frehley play guitar throughout Anomaly, all I can say to those who want to listen is this – Ace Frehley is back!! Ace Frehley shall remind the Rock and Roll world with all of it’s genres that yes, he can play guitar very well… and sing too. Ace Frehley’s vocals do not sound like a man who has been out of the recording studio for so many years, instead, it is my Metal opinion that Ace Frehley’s vocals are damn good and cool. Just listening to Anomaly takes me back to the days when quality songs were an important staple to Hard Rock and Heavy Metal bands. A sense of urgency to be real, is what I hear through the entirety of Anomaly, Ace Frehley has fused his very own Hard Rock and Heavy Metal sound with a nod to yesteryear, making Anomaly an album that far extends any relevance factor. From the song writing to the band backing up Ace Frehley here, this is a total album package. Ace Frehley has plenty of cool and damn good solo’s throughout this entire album, one of the many quality points of Anomaly.

I have been a KISS fan since the late ’70’s, I guess once you follow a pack of musicians throughout your entire life you feel lucky that they are still around and making music. Honestly, this Anomaly album is genuine, I wouldn’t just settle for liking an album because of it’s past KISS association. Here are my top choices for songs on Anomaly: Genghis Khan, Space Bear, Fractured Quantum and Fox On The Run. (I could list more, yet I have made my Metal point already). Genghis Khan Rocks out at 6:08, the rhythm section introduces this song in pumped up heavy fashion, just a tremendous song overall. Space Bear and Fractured Quantum are the two instrumentals, two songs that justify Ace Frehley as the brilliant guitar player he is, not to mention songwriter. Fox On The Run is a cover of the 1974 Sweet song, from their Desolation Boulevard album. What a blast of Rock this Ace Frehley version of Fox On The Run is, a fabulous cover version. Alright, here are a couple more standouts for me – It’s A Great Life is a Hard Rock song that takes me straight down Old School memory lane, with straight up lyrics to compliment it. A Little Below The Angels is a self reflective song by Ace Frehley, in my Metal opinion, a very cool song that is straight from the heart. In Metal summary, I give a boisterous yeah! Ace Frehley is back!!

Here are some Ace Frehley notes to enrich your Metal mind:

With the exception of Fox On The Run, Ace Frehley wrote every song on Anomaly, as well as producing the album. 

Anton Fig is the drummer on nine out of the twelve songs on Anomaly.

On the back cover of the Anomaly CD jacket sleeve, there reads: … And In Memory Of Eric Carr & Dimebag Darrell. This type of dedication to late friends, shows that Ace Frehley is a class act.

The CD digipak for Anomaly is die-cut with 5 sides, instructions are enclosed to build this packaging into a three dimensional pyramid. The album cover art concept and design is by Ace Frehley.

Be sure to check out Ace Frehley’s official website… it is really cool. http://www.acefrehley.com/

Ace Frehley "Anomaly" large album pic

KISS “Sonic Boom” album cover & track listings!

Posted in 1970's classic rock bands, 1970's classic rock songs, 1970's hard rock bands, 1970's classic rock music, 1970's hard rock, 1970's heavy metal, 1970's heavy metal music, 1970's Rock, 1980's classic rock bands, 1980's heavy metal hits, 1980's popular rock bands, 1980's classic rock, 1980's classic rock music, 1980's hard rock, 1980's heavy metal bands, 1980's heavy metal music, 1980's heavy metal songs, 1990's heavy metal bands, 1990's heavy metal music, classic hard rock, classic hard rock bands, classic hard rock music, classic heavy metal, classic heavy metal albums, classic rock, classic rock bands, classic rock music, classic rock songs, collecting music, cool album covers, current hard rock albums, current hard rock music, current hard rock songs, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal music, current rock albums 2009, essential classic rock albums, essential hard rock albums, essential heavy metal albums, essential heavy metal songs, essential rock albums, Hard Rock, hard rock albums 2009, hard rock music 2009, hard rock songs, hard rock vocalists, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal albums, heavy metal favorites, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, heavy metal songs 2009, heavy metal this decade, Metal, metal odyssey, Music, new hard rock album, new heavy metal album, old school hard rock, old school heavy metal, recent heavy metal albums, rock & roll, rock and roll, rock music, vintage hard rock albums, vintage heavy metal albums, vintage heavy metal bands, vintage heavy metal songs, vintage rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 20, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

KISS Sonic Boom will be released on October 6, 2009, in the U.S., exclusively at Walmart, Walmart.com and Sam’s Club. Sonic Boom is a 3 – disc set: a CD of 11 new KISS songs, a 15 song newly re-recorded KISS Klassics CD and 1 KISS Bonus Live DVD. Cool. I will be buying my copy of Sonic Boom first thing on October 6th, (right after I bring my daughters to school). Admitting that I am stoked about KISS returning with Sonic Boom is a Metal understatement! The wait is coming to an end… a new KISS album is upon us, for me it will be Christmas in October, uh, Kissmas in October that is. Long live KISS Rock and Roll!

The Bonus Live DVD is footage from the KISS 2009 South American Tour in Buenos Aires, Argentina. A 20 page booklet will be included inside Sonic Boom as well. Sonic Boom will come as a DigiPak.

 

KISS "Sonic Boom" x-large album pic 2009

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Track Listing for KISS Sonic Boom:

  1. Modern Day Delilah

  2. Russian Roulette

  3. Never Enough

  4. Yes I Know (Nobody’s Perfect)

  5. Stand

  6. Hot And Cold

  7. All For The Glory

  8. Danger Us

  9. I’m An Animal

10. When Lightning Strikes

11. Say Yeah

Track Listing for the KISS Klassics CD:

  1. Deuce

  2. Detroit Rock City

  3. Shout It Out Loud

  4. Hotter Than Hell

  5. Calling Dr. Love

  6. Love Gun

  7. I Was Made For Lovin’ You

  8. Heaven’s On Fire

  9. Lick It Up

10. I Love It Loud

11. Forever

12. Christine Sixteen

13. Do You Love Me

14. Black Diamond

15. Rock And Roll All Nite

KISS Bonus Live DVD Track Listing:

  1. Deuce

  2. Hotter Than Hell

  3. C’mon And Love Me

  4. Watchin’ You

  5. 100,000 Years

  6. Rock And Roll All Nite

SHADOWS FALL – “RETRIBUTION” album is a Thrash Metal lightning strike!

Posted in 1990's thrash metal albums, 1990's thrash metal music, Album Review, cool album covers, current extreme metal albums, current extreme metal music, current heavy metal albums, current metal albums, current thrash metal, current thrash metal albums, current thrash metal music, essential heavy metal albums, essential metal music albums, essential thrash metal albums, extreme metal music, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 2009, heavy metal bands this decade, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music, metal music today, metal odyssey, Metal Reviews, Music, new heavy metal album, new thrash metal albums, rock music, Thrash Metal, thrash metal 2009, thrash metal album review, thrash metal albums 2009, thrash metal music, thrash metal music reviews, thrash metal today with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 16, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Shadows Fall "Retribution" small picHighly recommended to all Metal fans all over the globe! That is just how unreal good Retribution from Shadows Fall is… that I start off by just bluntly recommending this new album. Seriously, Retribution is one solid chunk of Thrash Metal Music for me. On this new release, (released September 15, 2009), Shadows Fall sounds as if they are not holding back the hard and heavy for no one. I am not taking the easy way out by saying all ten songs are damn incredible. The all encompassing barrage of Metal fury, that highlights each turn and corner on Retribution, is like a Metal power rush to my brain that I do not want to end. In my Metal opinion, it very much seems as if Shadows Fall took a long and hard listen to the once in a millennium, Metal masterpiece from Slipknot called All Hope Is Gone… and decided they too wanted to raise their own Metal bar. The All Hope Is Gone influence I hear on Retribution, is deserving of a raucous Metal applause for Shadows Fall, for if this influence is to be true… Shadows Fall surely knows real Metal when they hear it. The unrelenting surge of Metal power both musically and vocally, (both lead and backing/gang vocals), found within Retribution, are the best ways I can describe my All Hope Is Gone comparison. 

Brian Fair on lead vocals has never sounded this unreal great before, based on what my ears hear on Retribution. Brian Fair shows his harmonious side as a crooner and just as suddenly can deliver the bad ass vocals I have always expected… and he does so with the determination and tenacity of a seasoned Metal pro. If it was ever possible for Jason Bittner to elevate his already incredible Metal talents on drums, well, he did it here on Retribution… whoa. Jonathan Donais on lead guitar, takes full Metal command with creative leads that are above impressive. One recent professionally paid Metal Music critic wrote in the November 2009 issue of Revolver Magazine: “arguably the most mainstream-friendly album the group has made” – (?), uh, I beg to differ. First, I would never equate the word mainstream to Shadows Fall… never, ever, from 1998’s Somber Eyes to the Sky to 2007’s Threads of Life. Now, with Retribution, for this album to even be remotely considered mainstream friendly, well, that is like saying a Pit Viper hanging from a tree limb above your head is friendly too. Nickelback is mainstream friendly, with absolutely no disrespect of course, to them. This is just another perfect Metal example, that there are some Metal Music critics out there that never bother to listen to the album(s) they are being paid to review. Frustrating, to say the least.

My two choice picks on Retribution are: King Of Nothing and Embrace Annihilation. These are the two songs that just embody the core Thrash Metal essence of Retribution, in my Metal opinion. Shadows Fall has made me feel Metal secure, with their creating Retribution, this is an album that encapsulates all things powerful about Thrash Metal. Metal truth be told, I will be recommending this album to anyone who listens for the rest of my Metal life. Musical integrity and the respect for quality song writing are characteristics every band should uphold, Shadows Fall upheld them on Retribution ten fold. Shadows Fall will always have their Metalcore roots, with Retribution, they have imprinted themselves into the Thrash Metal genre like an unstoppable lightning strike.

Shadows Fall are:

Brian Fair on lead vocals

Jonathan Donais on lead guitar/vocals

Matthew Bachand on guitar/vocals

Paul Romanko on bass 

Jason Bittner on drums

Retribution was produced by Zeuss and released on Ferret Music and Independent Label Group.

Shadows Fall "Retribution" large pic

IN THIS MOMENT – Covers “Call Me” with Heavy Metal respect

Posted in 1970's classic rock bands, 1980's classic rock bands, 1980's popular rock bands, 1980's rock music, 1980's classic rock, 1980's classic rock music, 1980's classic rock songs, 1980's hard rock, Century Media, century media records, classic rock, classic rock bands, classic rock cover songs, classic rock music, classic rock songs, classic rock vocalists, cool album covers, cover songs, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal music, essential heavy metal albums, essential heavy metal songs, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal albums, heavy metal cover songs, heavy metal music, heavy metal songs 2009, heavy metal this decade, heavy metal vocalists, metal odyssey, Metal Reviews, Music, new wave music 1980, rock music, vintage rock albums with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on September 14, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

In This Moment "The Dream" Deluxe cover small picI really, really, really like In This Moment… especially the vocal talent of Maria Brink. I bought The Dream last September of 2008, man, what an album. Collectively speaking, In This Moment put out one incredibly melodic Heavy Metal album of songs, with The Dream. Sure, In This Moment took on a more mainstream Heavy Metal sound, yet it hooked me line and Metal sinker. On June 30, 2009, In This Moment released The Ultra Violet Edition of The Dream, (on Century Media Records), which includes several additional bonus tracks and videos. One bonus song that has really grabbed ahold of my Metal awareness and senses is the cover of the Blondie Rock classic – Call Me. In my most honest of Metal opinions, In This Moment covers Call Me with the upmost of Heavy Metal respect. Too often, I am not a fan of how a Classic Rock song gets covered… I always like to see a great Rock song from decades past get it’s just due. Maria Brink vocally gives Call Me her very own identity, without sacrificing the original character and emotion of the original. In This Moment Rocks this song to new heights, for me.

As I see it, In This Moment can do no wrong right now… they are on a tremendously heavy roll and there hopefully is no Metal limit for this band in the future. For me, this cover of Call Me is one that I need to hear consecutive times over, to get my Metal fill. I will always revere the original version of Call Me by Blondie, Deborah Harry shall never take a back seat to Maria Brink. I am just psyched out that there are now two versions of this great Rock Classic, for me to get pumped up from. The original version of Call Me by Blondie caught my ears attention back in 1980, when I was fourteen years old… the cover version of Call Me by In This Moment has made it two times a Metal charm for me, in 2009.

Giving credit where it is due, Blondie released Call Me in February of 1980, on the American Gigolo Soundtrack. Call Me was a #1 hit single on the Billboard Chart in 1980 for Blondie as well. Blondie was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2006.

In This Moment "The Dream" Deluxe cover large pic

W.A.S.P. “BABYLON” is coming October 13, 2009!!

Posted in 1980's heavy metal bands, 1980's heavy metal music, 1980's metal music, 1990's heavy metal bands, classic heavy metal, classic metal, cool album covers, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 2009, heavy metal bands this decade, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music, metal music this decade, metal music today, metal odyssey, Music, old school heavy metal, spooky album covers, spooky metal album covers, vintage heavy metal bands, W.A.S.P. with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on September 7, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

I just received a very Metal enthusiastic email from my best buddy Scott… he asked if I have checked out the W.A.S.P. Nation website… evidently, it has been a few weeks since I last checked in there. The news is out! W.A.S.P. BABYLON is coming out this October 13th of 2009!!! Scott is without a doubt, the biggest W.A.S.P. fan that I know, he single handedly is instrumental in my very own Metal hunger for W.A.S.P. Heavy Metal. (This goes back decades, plus he more than nudged me to buy a whole bunch of W.A.S.P. on CD a year ago too). Blackie Lawless is BACK!! W.A.S.P. is BACK with a new album this October! This is what Heavy Metal is all about, it is spelled – W.A.S.P.  In my Metal opinion, there has never, ever, been a W.A.S.P. album that has short changed the true essence of Heavy Metal. October of 2009 is looking better by the Metal second now. Scott and I will be counting the days down for this one… 

Metal fans… visit http://www.waspnation.com 

W.A.S.P. "Babylon" large album cover

Saviours “Into Abaddon” – a worthwhile Metal Music listen

Posted in 2008 metal music albums, Album Review, cool album covers, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal music, current metal albums, doom metal music, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal bands this decade, heavy metal music, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal this decade, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music, metal music this decade, metal music today, metal odyssey, Metal Reviews, Music, spooky album covers, stoner metal music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 3, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

main-150When I first listened to Saviours “Into Abaddon”, I heard instantly the early Black Sabbath and Motorhead influences, (in my Metal opinion). This second album from Saviours is heavy duty on the riffs, a fine quality about this Metal music. Saviours plays Metal that can be regarded as Stoner Metal or Doom Metal. The Metal here is heavier than traditional – Old School Stoner Metal. With a slight comparison to The Sword, Saviours is darker musically, a more gloomy atmosphere and vocally more tough and raspy. All 7 songs are good, the lack of more songs is made up for by the time length of each song. Lead vocalist and guitarist Austin Barber sounds like he is leading a Metal charge through the dark northern woods of an ancient forgotten land. Musically, these guys have their armor, it is the hard and heavy way they play. I find Saviours difficult to dismiss as just an average Metal band… they are better than I anticipated with this album. It is not as if Saviours has broke any new ground here musically, still this band is not soft on the Metal either. If your into the heavier side of Stoner Metal or are looking for a new and decent Metal band to catch onto, picking up “Into Abaddon” is worth the time and money. Saviours plays Metal the old fashioned way, no hits, no frills or gimmicks, just coming at you with some solid heavy music.

Song list for “Into Abaddon”: 1. Raging Embers, 2. Into Abaddon, 3. Narcotic Sea, 4. Cavern of Mind, 5. Mystichasm, 6. Firewake Angel, 7. Inner Mountain Arthame

CD sidenotes:
The liner notes come with 6 pages of complete lyrics, with cool and spooky, midivil style, extended artwork and the expected credits. (I have always been an admirer of top notch Heavy Metal album artwork, the front cover art of this CD and liner notes art tie in with the Metal Music of Saviours). “Into Abaddon” was released on January 22, 2008, on Kemado Records.

Saviours as they appear on “Into Abaddon”: Austin Barber on guitar and vocals, D.Tyler Morris on guitar, Scott Batiste on drums and Cyrus Comiskey on bass.

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lamb of god – “Wrath” is a welcomed overdose of Thrash Metal ferocity

Posted in Album Review, cool album covers, current extreme metal albums, current extreme metal music, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal music, current live heavy metal albums, current metal albums, current thrash metal albums, current thrash metal music, essential heavy metal albums, essential metal music albums, extreme metal music, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 2009, heavy metal music 2009, Heavy Metal Reviews, Metal, metal music, metal music this decade, metal music today, Metal Reviews, Music, new thrash metal albums, recent heavy metal albums, Thrash Metal, thrash metal 2009, thrash metal album review, thrash metal music, thrash metal music reviews, thrash metal today with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 30, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

main-150Lamb of god, now here is the meat and potatoes that I need in my Metal diet. Oh, the usual Metal adjectives can be thrown at this band… fast, furious, heavy, insanely heavy, blistering, scorching and Metal blinding. Now that all those notoriously used descriptions of lamb of god are out of the way, (I will never argue with using the preceding adjectives), my lone word to describe lamb of god and “Wrath” is infreakincredible. If you are hungry for a Metal album that is totally filled to the brim, with non stop, forcefully driven Thrash, “Wrath” will set you Extreme and/or Thrash Metal straight. The only warning here is that you very well may become corrupted and/or addicted to “Wrath”, which will in turn have your Metal senses on the verge of a Thrash overdose. Favorite song on “Wrath” you ask? Forget about it… this is one of those rare albums where the Metal is all inclusive to the moniker unimaginably great. Yup, I am blast beating the lamb of god drum here, darn proud of it too.

My first listen to “Wrath” made it very clear, to me, that lamb of god is happening now… this incredible Thrash album has not been dug up from decades ago, it is current and ranks above a crowded room of new and vintage Thrash Metal albums. Of course, this is my Metal opinion… I will not go over the deep end and credit “Wrath” as being the greatest Thrash Metal album ever, yet “Wrath” gets permanently placed on my all-time favorite list without further deliberation. Is “Wrath” excessive? You betcha it is and I take the Thrash Metal pummeling like the seasoned Metal addict that I am. This album boasts, with clarity, the strength of lamb of god as a unit, pure, forceful and unrelenting power in the music and vocals. As I see it, after listening to this album, lamb of god shall never ride shotgun to no other Metal band in the land.

“Wrath” begins with a surprisingly eloquent and soothing instrumental, intro, titled “The Passing”, which lends itself as an innocent segue to “In Your Words”, where once this song kicks in, all mellow bets are off. “Everything To  Nothing” is my favorite song on “Wrath”, (I will bend and pick one out from this album), it just has the most memorable riffs, leads and vocals. Randy Blythe on vocals for me, is as grinding, lean and mean as they come. Randy can deliver the Death Metal growls just as easy as he belts out the Thrash Metal vocals. (I personally cannot grasp any Metalcore tag that at times, gets placed on lamb of god). I really admire the style of Chris Adler on drums, with John Campbell on bass these two guys are crushingly good. Willie Adler and Mark Morton on guitars are today’s example, of an axe slinging duo of Metal profoundness. Richmond Virginia should erect a lamb of god visitors bureau. To have the bragging rights of being the home turf for this band, is a great Metal story. By this point, you probably are aware that I highly endorse listening to and buying lamb of god’s Metal… I could not be more emphatic about this album “Wrath” and the band that created it.

* “Wrath” was released on Epic Records on February 24, 2009. 

 

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Job For A Cowboy “Ruination” – Extreme Death Metal album is a high point for 2009

Posted in Album Review, cannibal corpse, cool album covers, current death metal albums, current death metal music, current extreme metal albums, current extreme metal music, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal music, Death Metal, death metal 2009, death metal guitarists, death metal music, death metal vocals, Extreme Metal, extreme metal music, extreme music, extreme music today, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 2009, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal this decade, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music, metal music today, Metal Reviews, Music, new heavy metal album, scary album covers, spooky album covers, Vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on July 9, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

fullsizeI have an appetite for the most Extreme Metal Music out there. Job For A Cowboy is without question, a healthy dose of Extreme Metal. Death Metal is this bands calling card. Playing every musical instrument in their band extremely fast and heavy is an understatement. Blast beats and the infamous cookie monster vocals are lathered all over the songs on “Ruination”, (released on Metal Blade Records, July 7, 2009). So, with all of the expected characteristics of being an Extreme – Death Metal band aside, Job For A Cowboy does prove to me one thing… they are more concerned about global and societal troubles than one might expect. I am not going to admit, I can actually make out the lyrics to these songs, from the vocals of Jonny Davy. Nope, instead, I have the assistance of the sacred liner notes, that come with the complete lyrics for every song on “Ruination”. For me, not understanding the words being pronounced from the Death Metal growls of Jonny Davy comes with the territory of this Metal genre. With this genre of Metal, the lead vocalist is just as equally important as any of the musical instruments being played. It is the anger driven vocals that gives the songs on “Ruination” their intended extreme force and purpose, if you will. Jonny Davy on vocals is equivalent to a wasp nest being disturbed by a broom stick. His vocals will swarm all over your Metal soul, clutching it, beating it into shape and then slapping you in the face with it. Job For A Cowboy delivers a lesson in Extreme – Death Metal whoop ass that has me saying… thank you sir, can I please have more?

jfac_photo_smallJust when I thought that Cannibal Corpse’s “Evisceration Plague” was the lightning strike of an Extreme – Death Metal album of 2009, well, now I have my own personal Metal controversy. Between Cannibal Corpse and Job For A Cowboy, it is a pick ’em as to who punishes and obliterates my Metal senses more in 2009. “March To Global Enslavement” may be a bit much on the side of extreme paranoia, then again, this is Extreme Metal I am listening to here with “Ruination”. “Unfurling A Darkened Gospel” in my Metal interpretation is anti-war and anti-corporate handshakes, thus making for quite the anti theme song, an undisputed Death Metal barrage. It is an invigorating feeling to know that bands like Job For A Cowboy can speak their minds and serve up their opinions without any American government suppression or censorship. When you stop and really think about it, America really is the land of the free. (Thank you Dee Snider for making certain this Metal Music freedom remained for us all). This is what Metal is all about, creating the heaviest and most extreme music while shouting out about things that really irritate you. 

“To Detonate And Exterminate” is a horrible reminder of what may come to pass if our nuclear powers ever decide to wage war. Nuclear War is not a cheery topic, it is a Death Metal topic though. Job For A Cowboy paints the morbid picture for us to envision, if stupidity ever engineers the decision for enacting a nuclear war. The Extreme – Death Metal scene is not a society of uneducated dopes. This genre has something to say every once in a while, therefore I do find substance and thought provoking topics of world concern, with the lyrics on “Ruination”. Job For A Cowboy enables me to stay in touch with the younger generation of Extreme Metal, these guys are part of the big picture of Metal Music, a band that is only going to enhance the future of this genre. I cannot ignore the viciousness and total annihilation that is the Metal Music on “Ruination”, this is total Metal brutality from Job For A Cowboy – I could not bestow a higher compliment. 

Some extra info to nourish the Metal mind:

Job For A Cowboy, as they appear on “Ruination”: Jonny Davy on lead vocals, Bobby Thompson on guitar, Al Glassman on guitar, Brent Riggs on bass and Jon “Charn” Rice on drums. “Ruination” comes with a 24 page, full color booklet that is extremely cool. As I mentioned earlier, the lyrics for all 10 songs are in this booklet, with eye popping extended artwork, that fits right into the themes heard on “Ruination”. (As a side note, I purchased this CD on the day of it’s release, July 7, 2009, at Target… for $7.98!on sale! – not a bad retail price for quality Metal these days – smart move Target). I wish all new CD’s were at this price point.

Job For A Cowboy "Ruination" album pic large

HAMMERFALL “No Sacrifice, No Victory” – Power Metal on high

Posted in 1970's Rock, 1980's power metal music, 1980's heavy metal music, 1990's power metal music, 1990's heavy metal music, 2009 power metal music, Album Review, classic metal, cool album covers, cover songs, current heavy metal albums, current metal albums, european power metal, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 2009, heavy metal music 2009, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal this decade, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music today, Metal Reviews, Music, new heavy metal album, old school heavy metal, power metal from sweden, power metal music today, speed metal, symphonic metal, Vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 20, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

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HAMMERFALL has done it again. This Power Metal outfit wasn’t about to release a sound scape of easy listening, calming, ocean waves… no way. “No Sacrifice, No Victory” (released March 24, 2009), is Power Metal with several exclamation points after it. For anyone new to Hammerfall, they are similar in musical style to that of Helloween, a long standing originator of this Power Metal genre. With approximately 15 studio albums behind them, (not counting EP’s, Greatest Hits or Singles), Hammerfall on this new release, sound as if they are hell bent on dominating the world with their Power Metal brand. I am not about to get in their way, if anything I will raise my Metal fist into the air and cry out the lyrics to “Hallowed Be My Name” and be glad I did. If you are totally into Power Metal and cannot become inspired by “No Sacrifice, No Victory”, well, then you are not into Power Metal music at all.

In my Metal opinion, I find beauty to be an attribute of the musical sound of Power Metal. (Yeah, I did say beauty… let’s not get carried away here). On “Something For The Ages”, if one cannot hear the beauty in the melodic guitar leads and solos, then I will stand alone with my belief. (From this day forward, I shall call it Metal beauty). How many Metal bands can make a church organ sound cool in any song? Hammerfall can… on “Between Two Worlds”, courtesy of Power Metal veteran Jens Johansson. Now, do not hesitate to think for one Metal second, that Hammerfall does not hand unto us a heavy, Power Metal album… they do hammer down the heavy, the power… the Power Metal. The background vocals throughout are trademark and at the upmost heightened level throughout “No Sacrifice, No Victory”. Without these backing vocals on high, it would not be Power Metal. If I was to choose one track off this album that carries each crucial characteristic of Hammerfall’s Power Metal, it is “One Of A Kind”. The sweeping and confident lead vocals of Joacim Cans coupled with the musical totality of this band make this song a signature example, for me.

I found it to be a cool surprise, that Hammerfall added the cover version of “My Sharona” to this new album. (Not that Hammerfall is new to cover songs, their “Masterpieces” album is nothing but Vintage Metal cover tunes). The Knack originally released this song on their “Get The Knack” album, (circa 1979), a band and album I always felt was at least a decade ahead of their time. (I found this vintage album at a thrift store a couple months ago… mint condition and 50 cents too). Not to get stranded here, I really do admire Hammerfall for covering “My Sharona” and recognizing a true classic, a song that bordered and teetered on Punk, New Wave and Rock – an interwoven treat of a band is celebrated here by Hammerfall, The Knack should feel great about now. As for the cover version by Hammerfall? It Rocks, very well indeed. I have made a new rule about this “My Sharona” cover song… I must always play it extremely loud for maximum listening pleasure. Will Hammerfall resurrect “My Sharona” and once again make it a #1 hit single? Of course not, yet who cares? This song, being the last track on the album, is a grand way to end “No Sacrifice, No Victory”.

From the high, all enveloping lead and backing vocals, to the searing and soaring guitar leads, numerous and melodic solos, combined with the groove and thump of the rhythm section – add the keyboards and organ for the sensory surround sound that gives Power Metal it’s name… you will have ventured into the Metal world of Hammerfall’s “No Sacrifice, No Victory”.

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Great White “Rising” rises to the top with A+ Hard Rock

Posted in 1980's hard rock, 1980's heavy metal music, 1980's metal music, 1990's heavy metal music, Album Review, cool album covers, current hard rock albums, current hard rock songs, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal music, essential hard rock albums, Great White, great white 2009, Hair Metal, hair metal music, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock albums 2009, hard rock guitarists, hard rock songs, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal albums 2009, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal this decade, heavy metal vocalists, independent record labels, Metal, Music, Rock, rock music, Vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 8, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

Great White “Rising” for me, is a retrospective listen, and it is not Heavy Metal. This is some inspiring, well written and high quality – Hard Rock. I can even go as far to say that “Rising” can be defined as a Rock album. You are not going to hear the 1980’s flamboyant, grandiose, guitar riff – infused Heavy Metal tunes here. No insanely – Metal driven solos either, some tastefully crafted solo’s do appear however, (“Danger Zone”), so do not despair. What I do hear on “Rising”, is a band that has clearly found themselves creating music straight from the heart. I am not trying to sound sappy here, sappy is not allowed on Metal Odyssey. What I am trying to convey is that Great White has proven to us Metalheads years ago, that they can play heavy and light up an Arena or two. I am convinced, after listening to “Rising”, that Great White is just as enthusiastic and talented as ever. Great White are real musicians… they do not need to carbon copy their past albums onto a 2009 release. “Rising” has some really addicting Old School Hard Rock flavor throughout.

Jack Russell on lead and background vocals has close to no resemblance of the Hair Metal heyday of his 1980’s voice. Forget the comparisons anymore to the legendary Robert Plant! (It started to get very old, even though Great White is what I consider the greatest Led Zeppelin cover band in the world). It is refreshing to hear Jack Russell not sound like a 1980’s retread. His vocals are absolutely superb on this album. “Danger Zone” and “Down On The Level” are two of the more hardest rockers on “Rising”, giving way to some of Jack Russell’s vocal past. “My Sanctuary” exemplifies what the Hard Rock ballads sound like on this album… free flowing with plenty of catchy grooves. “Situation” and “Shine” are songs that are similar, being heavy enough that they are very far removed from being mellow meltdowns. “All Or Nothin” is laden with enough grooves, hooks and foot stomping moments to make this my favorite track. Loveless” is a real retrospective visit to late ’70’s early ’80’s Hard Rock sound- only it is a really good visit at that. Great White in my Metal opinion, has found the perfect balance of melody and harmonious vocals with just enough heavy guitar and rhythm section to make “Rising” a legitimate Hard Rock keeper.

I cannot possibly compare Great White of the ’80’s to Great White of 2009. I dig the music from both Great White eras. I find it cool when a band, especially one that is renowned for Heavy Metal, digs a little deeper into their musical souls and delivers a knock out of an album, filled with tunes you were not really expecting. Great White “Rising” should appeal to a very vast audience of genres… Hard Rock, Rock and Heavy/Hair Metal fans should find what they like on this album, I know I have. With all of my mentioning of retrospective on this review of “Rising”, I am steadfast against the labeling of music as being dated. Just because music brings back memories of other decades or sounds like music from the past, does not make it uncool. Look at how many CD’s and albums that the immortal Elvis and legendary Beatles sell on a weekly basis… if dated music does exist, then I guess dated music is in. Great White of 2009 is happening for me. I have spoken my Metal point.

“Rising” was released on April 21, 2009, on Shrapnel Records. And now, a Metal Odyssey roll call of the members of Great White, as they appear on “Rising”: Jack Russell – lead and background vocals, Mark Kendall – guitar and background vocals, Audie Desbrow – drums, Michael Lardie – guitar, keyboards, mandolin, sitar, harmonica, percussion and background vocals, Scott Snyder – bass and background vocals.

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DISTURBED – Indestructible Metal

Posted in Album Review, cool album covers, cover songs, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal music, current metal albums, essential heavy metal albums, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal this decade, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal concerts, metal music, metal music today, Metal Reviews, Music, new heavy metal album, recent heavy metal albums, Vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on June 7, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

main-150My wife is a loyal fan of Heavy Metal. (Thank goodness). Well, I knew this over 20 years ago before we ever married. This turned out to be quite the Metal bonus, having my wife being a fellow Metalhead. I get cool Metal gifts for my birthday and Christmas from her and she encourages and nurtures the love I have for Metal music. I am a very fortunate Metalhead to have a wife like her. Her favorite Heavy Metal band of all-time has always been Def Leppard… until I introduced her to Disturbed. (I still believe both these bands are tied for my wife’s favorite). So, as I write away with Metal Odyssey, she keeps looking over my shoulder… waiting to see when Disturbed makes it to this blog. I without further Metal ado… will give my Metal opinion on Disturbed. I feel Disturbed is an excellent Metal band. Sure, Disturbed came around during the Nu-Metal phenomenon, yet I still never would classify them as such. No matter how much I try to dissect it… Disturbed holds up as being Metal.

The debut album from Disturbed, “The Sickness”, (released in 2000), has it’s Nu-Metal appeal… regardless, I am not buying into this label. “The Sickness” for me, is a fabulous album that brought about a Metal sound that I never heard before. This sound I am talking about is truly derived from the vocals of David Draiman, I honestly have never heard anyone else sing like him. The sound effects that David Draiman belts out vocally are to me, unique. This guy can sing, I am not going to ever dispute this. The deep rooted emotion and anger has always been a believable staple with David’s vocals, in my Metal opinion. Usually a band has to do a knock out, killer job of covering a tune from years past to impress me… Disturbed blows away the original version of “Shout” from Tears for Fears. There is no comparison. Man, this song gets me Metal pumped, that is how it affects me, so shall it be. The “Ten Thousand Fists” album (released in 2005), cuts the Metal mustard for me as well. Hey, I always thought Genesis was a cool Progressive Rock band… I would give this band a listen from time to time. Then, when I first heard the cover version of “Land of Confusion” done by Disturbed – again, blown away. The Genesis original version of this song I always found to be intriguing, it is Disturbed that made it a Metal treat for my ears.

Last Summer of 2008, when Disturbed released “Indestructible”, I fell Metal victim again… the entire album was exactly what I was hoping for – the heaviest Disturbed yet. I will will say this much, without any hesitation, that “Indestructible” was one of the finest Metal albums released in 2008. Every song on this album is heavy duty and powerful, I could not endorse this album any louder than that. Dan Donegan on lead guitar is tremendously good… I cannot ignore this fact. John Moyer on bass and Mike Wengren on drums smack it down with the rhythm section, they are tremendous players as well. David Draiman sings to maximum Metal capacity too, always has. As a Metal side note, I feel it is extremely cool, that Disturbed has played for our U.S. troops overseas. To wrap this Disturbed post up, yup, I am a fan. I am not trying to sound like a fart head when I say – what is there not to like? Disturbed has released four very cool Metal albums in a row, that is quite the Metal task. Yes, music is always a personal preference, my personal belief is that Disturbed is as their newest album suggests… indestructible.

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Saxon continues to Rock with Old School Heavy Metal

Posted in 1970's heavy metal, 1980's heavy metal music, 1980's metal music, 1990's heavy metal music, Album Review, classic metal, cool album covers, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal music, essential heavy metal albums, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album covers, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, heavy metal music 2009, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music, metal music today, Metal Reviews, Music, new heavy metal album, old school heavy metal, Power Metal with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 30, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

7670060929Saxon – the words durable, old school, enduring and still excellent at their Metal craft, come to my mind. Let’s be honest, this is not the same Saxon from their “Denim and Leather” days, yet they are Saxon 2009 – that is Metal-good enough for me. Saxon was an essential part of “the new wave of British Heavy Metal”, going back to the late 1970’s into the early 1980’s. When I first heard Saxon back then, I felt like I found a band no one else knew about… I had a cool Metal secret. Well, the secret was already out, as I later found. Saxon was justifiable a favorite of legions of Metalheads, therefore I was not alone with my new found Heavy Metal band after all. 

568497a3ad“into the Labyrinth” is the newest album from Saxon, released on January 13, 2009. “Battalions Of Steel” and “Valley Of The Kings” have an almost majestic Power Metal sound, complete with keyboards and what sounds to me like an enlightened choir. For me, Saxon pulls it off extremely well when they go the Power Metal route. “Live To Rock” is the single being pushed off of this album, it is bona fide Old School Heavy Metal with a cool, vintage, anthemic delivery to it. This is the fist raising – head banging tune that will stir up plenty of 80’s Heavy Metal memories for many. “Slow Lane Blues” is another fine example of how Saxon holds onto the Classic Metal approach, a fun tune that tells the complete story of a dude being pulled over by a cop for speeding. “Crime Of Passion” is heavy, heavy, Metal. Nigel Glockler punishes the drum kit on this song, again, head banging can and may occur when listening to this song too. If there is to be a song on this album that is considered a ballad, well, “Voice” is it. However, this is a heavy ballad – staunch Metalheads need not worry – Saxon does not get sappy here at all. “Hellcat” is my favorite track on this album, it is fast, furious and heavy. The three key Metal music ingredients I always embrace! “Come Rock Of Ages (The Circle Is Complete)” is a Heavy Metal exclamation point for Saxon on this album, man this song is good. “Coming Home (Bottleneck Version)” is a back woods – lets stomp in the swamp – foot stomping tune. It is a cool way to come down after the previous 12 tracks of fired up Heavy Metal.

Biff Byford on lead vocals sounds fabulous throughout “into the Labyrinth”, he is what I consider truly underrated, as a Heavy Metal front man. Biff Byford is like the silent elder Metal statesman – compared to the press the other more popular lead vocalists of Old School Heavy Metal receive. Doug Scarratt and Paul Quinn are a cool and talented guitar duo to listen to, I have sincere Metal admiration for both. Nibbs Carter on bass hooks up with Nigel Glockler on drums to provide a top tier rhythm section of crushing Heavy Metal. Overall, long time Saxon fans should gobble up this new album, new fans should be easily recruited. When you have 13 songs this good, with tunes that Rock this heavy, I feel you have a Metal winner. 

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CKY “Carver City” is diverse, macabre Metal at it’s finest

Posted in Album Review, cool album covers, current heavy metal albums, current heavy metal music, current progressive metal albums, hard rock album review, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music, metal music today, Metal Reviews, Music, progressive metal, progressive metal albums, progressive metal music with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 21, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

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I am hopelessly addicted to Metal music. CKY is just another reason why my Metal addiction will never cease. I grabbed, uh, bought my copy of “Carver City” – smack dab on the actual release date of May 19, 2009. You betcha. I was innocently wandering the CD aisles of Wal-Mart, minding my own business, then CKY “Carver City” came into view. I could not resist, nor did I want to try hunting down this new CKY for a cheaper price. For it was there, so shall I buy. I am a steadfast and loyal enthusiast of all Metal, that is why I am very intrigued by CKY and “Carver City”. CKY brings to the Heavy Music table a whole bunch of Metal genres woven into one. These guys are giving Metal fans something different, a change of pace, a stray from the Metal norm, in my Metal opinion.

“The Era Of An End” is heavily saturated with what I will call spooky synthesizer sounds. This is the closing track on this album, a fitting end to an overall macabre Metal work of genius. “Old Carver’s Bones” is heavy, again with sci-fi atmospherics meets creepy synthesizer music and sound effects. The vocals on this tune are enough to not make me want to walk alone at night on a deserted road. Good stuff. “A#1 Roller Rager” is more commercially acceptable, melodic and harmonious. I find this tune to be quite catchy, again different from what is currently flooding the Metal market today. The vocals on “A#1 Roller Rager” sound familiar to the style of 1980’s Arena Rock, yet I am not complaining. (I said earlier CKY is different). “Hellions On Parade”, the opening track that every Metal fan should have heard by now, (due to it being on the internet everywhere prior to the release), works it’s melodic, Metal thumping magic for me. The synthetic textures of music found here on “Carver City” are such an integral style of CKY, that without them, this Metal would not sound so good. “Carver City” is loaded with plenty of cool riffs, impressive backing vocals and heavy ambiance. Everything CKY did here musically seems to seamlessly blend together, forming an imaginative and macabre sound scape of Metal, that I cannot get enough of. The stylistic and progressive theme that CKY ventures into on “Carver City” makes me appreciate this total package here. As a side note, the artwork on the front/back cover and inside the liner notes are perfect, this art fits right into the “Carver City” theme and musical environment. This is a cool, new, Metal album to own for the Summer of 2009 and beyond.

Now I want to call out the names of these guys – they get a gigantic Metal thank you from me for creating “Carver City”: Deron Miller on lead vocals, guitar, bass, moogs, orchestration * Chad I Ginsburg (CIG) on lead guitar, bass, moogs, orchestration and backing vocals * Jess Margera on drums * Matt Deis on bass. RoadRunner Records has yet another amazing Metal band on their roster, this label knows great music when they hear it.

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Michael Schenker & Gary Barden rock together again on “In The Midst Of Beauty”

Posted in 1980's hard rock, 1980's heavy metal music, Album Review, classic rock, current hard rock albums, current hard rock songs, current heavy metal music, Guitar, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock guitarists, hard rock songs, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music, Metal Reviews, Music, Rock, rock music, rock music vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 18, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

I always have been enamored by the guitar brilliance of Michael Schenker. I have always been a big fan of the Hard Rock/Heavy Metal vocals of Gary Barden. These two musicians combined, made for one very cool and memorable debut album by The Michael Schenker Group, which was self titled. My favorite album by this duo is the second Michael Schenker Group album, titled “MSG”. Depending on the song or album you listen to from the Michael Schenker Group catalog, this band can be defined as Rock, Hard Rock or Heavy Metal. Diversity has been the mainstay in Michael Schenker’s music, in my Metal opinion. A tried and true crossover of Heavy Music styles is what MSG has accomplished over the decades. Michael Schenker has had one incredible Hard Rock/Metal career, being an original member of the Scorpions and as a member of the infamous UFO.

Michael Schenker has had different lead vocalists over the years, again, my nod goes to the combo of Michael Schenker and Gary Barden. I did not intend to get too long winded, on the background history of The Michael Schenker Group, just a brief introduction is necessary for new fans that might want to check out the past music of MSG. Schenker – Barden “In The Midst Of Beauty” was released on May 13, 2008, with both Michael Schenker and Gary Barden rockin’ out together again. I am very pleased with this album, the vocals of Barden are still solid, he was never a flamboyant or in your face – Arena Rock vocalist to begin with. Barden for me, has always been a cool and deliberate Heavy Rock vocalist who exhibits real emotion in his vocals, while pronouncing the lyrics of his songs – always making the lyrical message as important as the music itself. In my Metal opinion, Gary Barden is as true a Heavy Rock vocalist today as he was in 1980. I cannot say enough about the guitar wizardry of Michael Schenker, to me he plays his very best on “In The Midst Of Beauty”.

All 12 songs are memorable for me on this album, with my favorite track being “Ride On My Way”. This tune is very melodic and it Rocks. I knew when I bought this CD, that I was not going to hear the resurrection of the 1980’s Schenker & Barden Heavy Metal attack. As years pass, all of our great and legendary Metal musicians change a tad or two. Does Gary Barden sound older? How about Michael Schenker? Give me a break, if anything else, there is a new found level of confident Metal that I hear on “In The Midst Of Beauty”. Do not be fooled, for Michael Schenker still brings the heavy on his guitar solos and leads. These two Heavy Metal legends can still Rock their hearts out, I only wish I could sing or play guitar this darn great at my age! “In The Midst Of Beauty” is a fantastic Hard Rock/old school Heavy Metal album that defines what Schenker and Barden are all about – both accomplished musicians who have nothing to prove to anyone – while still showing the entire Rock world what real song writing is all about.

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Duff McKagan’s Loaded is loaded with Punk & Hard Rock

Posted in Album Review, Century Media, century media records, current hard rock songs, current heavy metal music, Hard Rock, hard rock album review, hard rock guitarists, hard rock songs, Heavy Metal, heavy metal album review, heavy metal albums, heavy metal guitarists, heavy metal music, Heavy Metal Reviews, heavy metal vocalists, Metal, metal music, Metal Reviews, new hard rock album, new heavy metal album, new punk rock album, Punk rock, Rock, rock music, rock music vocals with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on May 7, 2009 by Metal Odyssey

9252961Duff McKagan, you know, the very famous and former bass player for the legendary Guns N’ Roses and current bass wizard for Velvet Revolver? Yeah, that guy. Well, let me tell you, Duff McKagan has his brand new solo, (if you will), album out right now and it is in my Metal opinion, sensational. Really, these tunes that Duff McKagan provides with Loaded are just that – loaded. Loaded with quality Hard Rock driven tunes. These songs have catchy hooks and an almost unmistakable Punk Rock vibe happening throughout the entire album. Loaded is groove laden and if I am not mistaken, not over-produced! I can honestly say, that I hear a bit of overall polish missing and I love that!!

Duff McKagan handles the lead vocal duties on every song and plays guitar on this album. I will say this without hesitation, Duff McKagan can sing. His vocals are tailored made for Hard Rock, with a whole bunch of Punk Rock attitude to go along with them. Why do I keep bringing up the comparisons with Punk Rock? Well, that is what I honestly hear, Duff Mckagan’s Loaded is all about Hard Rock and Punk Rock meeting each other in the middle. The only song that gets the least of my attention on this album is “Mother’s Day” – the lyrics are depressing. I always stray away from the sad ballads/sad lyrics from any band. However, despite the lyrics on this song, musically it is very listenable.

Once you listen to the first two tracks – “Sick” and “Sleaze Factory”, anyone who appreciates Hard Rock and Punk Rock will realize the fusion of the two are here with Loaded – these two songs set the table for this album. Duff McKagan has proved to me, that he is an extremely well rounded Rock musician, his talents resonate loud and clear on this album. Loaded as a band and Sick the album, are sure fire to achieve commercial and mainstream acceptance and success, I can appreciate that. Loaded as a band deserves all the applause they can muster. When you have the instant and legendary credibility of Duff McKagan carrying the music, broad acceptance is unavoidable, forget being labeled underground. Loaded and this album has become an instant favorite for me, I highly recommend this album to all heavy music fans worldwide. Now, to spotlight the fine musicians that make up Loaded: Duff McKagan on vocals & guitars, Geoff Reading on drums & vocals, Jeff Rouse on bass, vocals and translucent and Mike Squires on guitars and vocals.

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