Upon completion of its current European tour, BESTIAL MOCKERY will record a demo called Sepulchral Wrath (featuring the songs Satan's Devilsaw, The Witches Song, Sepulchral Wrath, Sworn To Darkness and Devilworship), release a split-LP with UNHOLY MASSACRE and begin work on a new album for Osmose called Gospel For The Insane...Alexander Pahl from Germany's OBSCENITY has officially taken over the bass position in DEW-SCENTED. Pahl had previously performed live with the band...CORPORATION 187 has begun writing a new album. While no studio has been chosen, the album is expected at the end of 2004...David Gold of WOODS OF YPRES has moved from Windsor to Toronto where he will reform the band. A new CD is planned for 2004...RUNEMAGICK will issue its new album On Funeral Wings on February 25th through Aftermath Music...TANKARD has set March 22nd as the release date for its new album Beast Of Bourbon...DESTRUCTION has a new DVD called Live Discharge - 20 Years Of Total Destruction. The video features footage from German festivals, as well as vintage footage from the 80's...Crossover act CONVERGE has signed with Epitaph Records...STRAPPING YOUNG LAD filmed a DVD on Friday, January 16th at the Commodore Ballroom in Vancouver. The video along with a new album are due through Century Media in the autumn of 2004...Kelly Reaves has left HASTE due to irreconcilable differences. Chris Mosle will take over the vocal duties...ILLDISPOSED has entered the studio in order to record a new studio album. The band will headline this year's Fuck The Commerce festival in Germany...OCCULT has signed to Karmageddon Media. The band's Elegy For The Weak album is due in April. The Dutch thrashers have also just released a DVD called To Be Thrashed By Occult. The Dutch label has also released MORIFADE's Domi<>nation album, as well as a re-release of the Necropolis Records' Nordic Metal - A Tribute To Euronymous sampler. The label will release VOND's Selvmord CD this month...GOD AMONG INSECTS, the side-project featuring vocalist Emperor Magus Caligula (DARK FUNERAL), guitarist Lord K (a.k.a. Kenth Philipson of THE PROJECT HATE), bassist Tomas Elofsson (SANCTIFICATION) and drummer Tobias Gustafsson (VOMITORY), will enter the studio next month to record an album for Threeman Recordings...AMON AMARTH will enter Berno Studio in May to record a new album for Metal Blade...Former ABIGOR and SUMMONING singer Silenius has joined ST. LUCIFER...Former ABIGOR and current DARKWELL and SHADOWCAST drummer Moritz Neuner will be filling in with GRAVEWORM for all 2004 shows. Regular drummer Martin Innerbichler will concentrate on "growing static buildings" this year...UNLEASHED has entered the studio to record a new album. The band will appear at various European festivals this summer. Century Media has issued the...And We Shall Triumph In Victory 6-Picture LP box recently...BOLT THROWER has begun working on an as yet unnamed album...THE FORSAKEN will tour Europe with SOILWORK in support of the new album Traces Of The Past. The album was released in Europe in November and is expected in North America in March...Nuclear Blast Records America has worked out a deal with Massacre Records for the release of the new DISBELIEF album which is called Spreading The Rage...DECEIVER, featuring members of MAZE OF TORMENT and SERPENT OBSCENE, will enter The Abyss studio in May with producer Tommy Tägtgren in order to record its debut EP. The as-yet-untitled effort will be out through Singapore's Konqueror Records in August...DECEMBER vocalist Mark Moots has left the band...DEICIDE has shot its first music video. The clip is for the title track to the new album Scars Of The Crucifix...HATE has signed to Listenable Records and will issue its Awakening Of The Liar album this month...KINETIC has signed with Sleaszy Rider Records. A debut album is due in September...Horgh, formerly drummer of IMMORTAL has replaced Lars Szöke in HYPOCRISY. Szöke left the band recently because he couldn't handle the hectic schedule of HYPOCRISY anymore. The new album The Arrival will be released on 16.02.2004...DIMENSION ZERO, DETONATION and IMMEMORIAL are touring Europe this month...Minako, the guitar player for GASPANIC, was recently in a motorcycle accident resulting in her wrist being injured. The band's next demo is consequently delayed...GORGOROTH is preparing a live DVD which will be released next year. It will be recorded in Poland this year...CROMM CRUAC is writing songs and is hoping to begin recording two new albums next autumn. The band is also looking to play at The Netherlands' Waldrock Festival. Fans can vote for CROMM CRUAC at http://waldrock.no-ip.org/bandpoll/list.php3...The Swedish death metal band SKYFIRE has signed with Arise Records after releasing two albums through Hammerheart Records. The band will record its third album in March at Los Angered and Underground Studios and will seek to have it released in May...Forthcoming releases on Sound Riot Records are: VICIOUS' Vile, Vicious & Victorious, MEMORIZED DREAMS' Theatre Of Life, UNCHAINED's Unchained, GHOST MACHINERY's Haunting Remains, GAIA EPICUS' Symphony Of Glory in October and an unnamed CD by EXCALION in November...UNHOLY GHOST's debut CD Torrential Reign has been completed. It is scheduled for an immediate release on Olympic/Century Media...EXMORTEM will record the follow-up to 2002's Pestilence Empire in May and June at The Antfarm Studio in Aarhus with Tue Madsen producing. No title has been set for the album yet, but a few working titles are Nihilistic Contentment, Graveside Mourning Ritual and Parasite Paradise. The album is expected in the autumn. Osmose Productions will release EXMORTEM's Pest Campaign Live 10" Vinyl around March as well...NAER MATARON will have its Up From The Ashes and River At Dash Scalding albums re-released on vinyl - limited to 500 copies each - by Undercover Records and Apocalyptic Empire Records...IMPERIA's debut album Ebony Tears will be issued through Cold Blood Industries in the spring...Here is some news from Black Lotus Records: the label has signed Sweden's SATARIEL. The band will enter Dug Out Studio this spring in order to record a new album. THE DUSKFALL's Source album is now out. The label has dropped PHANTOM LORD and ENSHADOWED...Here is some news from Lifeforce Records: HEROD's album For Whom The Gods Would Destroy album is now out. TRIVIUM is shooting a video for the song Ember To Inferno. CATARACT will head out to Antfarm Studios in Denmark from March 13th to April 5th in order to record the follow-up to the Great Days Of Vengeance album. The new record will be released on June, 14th...The new CRYFEMAL album is called With The Help Of The Devil and released by Trinity Records...Guitarist Lucas Rominger (ANAL BLAST), singer James Lee (ORIGIN, VILE, DEMONICIDE), singer Scott Creekmore (BROKEN HOPE, NUM SKULL), drummer Duane Timlin (DIVINE EMPIRE, FOREST OF IMPALED, BROKEN HOPE, SARCOPHAGUS and ANAL BLAST) and bassist Bill Lawrence (also of ANAL BLAST) have a grind/death band called NEVER AGAIN and recording a demo in Florida...Red Stream has issued THE RAVENOUS' Blood Delirium album...Candlelight Records has signed KHOLD, MITHRAS, CADAVER, BLUT AUS NORD and NIYA...SKINLESS drummer John Longstreth has quit the band due to musical differences. He will be drumming for EXHUMED on the upcoming US and European tours...CONSPIRACY A.D. has shot a video clip for the song Bloody Revenge. The song is taken from the band's Humanity = Destruction...The End Is Near album...USURPER has announced the addition of vocalist Danny Lawson to the group. Danny was the vocalist for Jon Necromancer's first band AGNOSIA...KULT OV AZAZEL will release a compilation of rare demo and unreleased tracks with a limited-edition of 300 copies on CD. Entitled Black Mass Consecration, the disc will be issued through Malaysia's Inquisition Musik label...DARK FUNERAL has picked De Profundis Clamavi Ad Te Domine as the title of its upcoming live album which is due on March 29th through Regain Records...VENOMOUS CONCEPT, the new band featuring MELVINS/FANTOMAS guitarist Buzz Osborne, former BRUTAL TRUTH singer Kevin Sharp and NAPALM DEATH members bassist Shane Embury and drummer Danny Herrera, will be performing at the Double Door club in Chicago, Illinois on Friday, February 13th. The opening band is NAUSEA L.A...DREAMS OF DAMNATION, featuring former DARK ANGEL guitarist Jim Durkin, is at Shiva Industries in Santa Ana, California recording an EP entitled Vengeance: Chapter One for Black Cherry Music...SOULGRIND, the Finnish band featuring former LULLACRY frontwoman Tanja Kemppainen, will enter the studio on May 28th in order to record a new album called Omnino Veritas. It is expected to be out in early November through France's Holy Records...PAGANIZER have re-signed with Xtreem Music. The planned tour with FLESHCRAWL is, however, cancelled...SAURON will enter Double Noise Studio in April to begin recording its new full-length album. Fans can expect it in late 2004 through Neurotic Records...OBITUARY are reforming and hope to release a new CD in late 2004 or early 2005...Fearsome Records is looking for new bands for inclusion on the compilation CD Blown To Pieces volume 3. Interested parties should visit www.fearsomerecs.nl.nu. Blown To Pieces 2 was just released with 20 bands...Crash Music will release PYREXIA's Cruelty Beyond Submission CD this month...France's GURKKHAS is working on a new album called Tyranny...Crash Music has signed an exclusive distribution deal for the United States with Blunt Force Records. This is the label of DYING FETUS. Crash Music will start by releasing four back catalog albums by DYING FETUS this month...The next BATHORY album is tentatively entitled Dra Ballen I Gruset Grabber...HEAVEN SHALL BURN recently inked a worldwide deal with Century Media Records. The group has just completed its third full-length recording, called Antigone, which is currently set for a late spring release...METALHEAD, featuring former ARBITRATER drummer Lawrence Paterson, is in the studio recording its debut demo which is tentatively entitled Survival Of The Fittest. The songs are: Southern Comfort, Blood And Sand, Ludovico Technique and Last Man Standing...Germany's Miriqudi Productions has issued INFERNAL REGENCY's Feel My Blazing Sword LP (limited to 333 copies) and issuing the GRAVEWURM/DEVIL LEE ROT Infernal Gates Split 7" and OLD WAINDS' Where The Snow.... LP soon...Mexican death metal band HACAVITZ has signed to OSMOSE for two albums. The members also figure in RAVAGER and DEMONIZED and are Antimo Buonnan on guitar and vocals, Eduardo Guevara on guitar and Oscar Garcia on drums...INHUME will be recording the follow-up to In For The Kill in September. The new album will be recorded at The Toneshed Studio with Erwin Hermsen...WACO JESUS and ISACAARUM are touring Europe under the European Pussy Off-Road tour 2004 moniker...UNFRAGMENT is working on a new album called Vices And Verses which is due in the summer. The band has some advance music posted at http://www.unfragment.fr.st...HIRAX will be issuing a new album called The New Age of Terror soon...C.A.H. Records has released WORDS THAT BURN's Spawning Ground For Hatred CD, DISGUST's The Horror Of It All LP, TO WHAT END?'s The Purpose Beyond CD and REMAINS OF THE DAY's Hanging On Rebellion album...GENERAL SURGERY has parted ways with bassist Andreas Eriksson. According to the band, Andreas "left the band due to other commitments. The vacant bass player position will be handled on a stand-in basis by our demon-director and good friend, Glenn Sykes of REGURGITATE." GENERAL SURGERY will shortly release a split 7" with MACHETAZO and another with FILTH...TORCHBEARER, the metal band featuring members of UNMOORED, INCAPACITY, SOLAR DAWN, SETHERIAL and SATARIEL, has completed work on an album called Yersinia Pestis which is due on March 22nd. It is the first album to be released under the recently-announced agreement between Cold Records and Metal Blade Records. The band is Pär Johansson on vocals, Christian Älvestam on guitars, Göran Johansson also on guitar, Mikael Degerman on bass and Henrik Schönström on drums...John Monte (M.O.D., MINDFUNK, DRAGPIPE) has joined MINISTRY ...THE CROWN has chosen Crowned Unholy as the title for the new version of the Crowned In Terror album, due in the autumn through Metal Blade Records. The new CD will feature returning and original singer Johan Lindstrand in place of Tomas Lindberg...Philadelphia's SINGLE BULLET THEORY will use the services of KING DIAMOND drummer Matt Thompson for the recording session of the new album...URKRAFT has completed the track listing for its debut album, Eternal Cosmic Slaughter. The album is due on March 8th through Cartel Media...DIMMU BORGIR has parted ways with drummer Nick Barker. No reason was offered...Bassist Jörgen Sandström (ex-GRAVE) has also left ENTOMBED and been replaced by Nico Elgstrand (formerly of TERRA FIRMA) who has worked as the Swedes' engineer in the past....INFERNAL MAJESTY has signed a deal with Galy Records. The Canadians' new CD, called One Who Points To Death, is scheduled for release in April....AMON AMARTH will play two concerts in Reykjavik, Iceland this March....AVULSED has signed a deal with Metal Age Productions....Italy's RISING MOON has signed a two-album deal with Finland's Rising Realm Records. The group will enter Outer Sound Studio in June to record...GOATWHORE's drummer Zak Nolan has left the band. Justin Perez of SKINKRAWL and DEMISE will fill in for the time being. He will be with the band on tour in Japan from February 2nd to 6th.
The result of the collaboration of Tony Iommi and Glenn Hughes who recorded together in 1996 as a sequel of sorts to BLACK SABBATH's Seventh Star album will be out this year. The material has been available as a bootleg under the title Eighth Star, but will finally appear officially. The album also features Don Airey and Dave Holland...STATETROOPER has rehearsed six new songs in order to record a new album. The CD will feature ten new songs, as well as a rearranged version of the song How Does It Feel which appeared on the debut's recent re-release. The band is recording at Bar Fly Studio in Muenster, Germany with Michael Voss of SILVER producing. Expect a late spring release...Alex Zivojinovich, guitarist and founding member of RUSH, better-known as Alex Lifeson, was arrested after what deputies described as a drunken, violent outbreak at a Florida hotel on New Year's Eve. His son Justin and daughter-in-law were also arrested as part of the incident. The guitarist has denied all charges and may be suing the police department...KROKUS has a double-live CD and DVD called Fire & Gasoline out in Europe...QUIET RIOT's Kevin DuBrow is recording an album of his favourite cover songs from the 1970's for Shrapnel Records. "This album's a real labor of love," says DuBrow. His band is comprised of Kevin DuBrow on vocals, Kevin Curry on guitar, German bassist Gunter Nezhoda and former BADLANDS/UFO drummer and RACER X vocalist Jeff Martin...U.D.O. will release a mini-DVD on February 23rd through AFM Records. The DVD will feature three clips and an interview. The band will also release a new album called Thunderball in March...FIREWIND has been joined by vocalist Chity Somapala (ex-AVALON, FARO) for its forthcoming Japanese tour. The band's vocalist was not available for personal reasons...DOKKEN has issued a new DVD through Sanctuary Music. Dokken: Japan Live '95 features the band's original line-up performing, as well as more recent footage of the act...Rand Burkey, former guitarist of ATHEIST, has a new band called RANDOM XAOS...BIOHAZARD singer and bassist Evan Seinfeld is entering the pornography business. The Oz actor will star in films with his porn actress wife, Tera Patrick...BIOHAZARD singer/guitarist Billy Graziadei and KITTIE bassist Jennifer Arroyo have a new band called RODEK...SOILWORK's drummer Richard Evensand has joined American mallcore band CHIMAIRA...PARADISE LOST will enter the studio in April in order to begin recording the follow-up to Symbol Of Life. The new album is due in August...Frontman Jani Lane has left WARRANT in order to pursue a solo career...Michael Schenker and singer Davey Pattison (formerly of GAMMA and ROBIN TROWER) will record an album of cover versions of '70s songs. The CD, entitled Endless Jam, is due in the spring through Mascot Records in Europe and Shrapnel Records in the U.S.A...Karmageddon Media has launched a brand-new sub-division called New Aeon Media to "support the [heavy metal] underground." The first three signings are FINAL DAWN from Finland ("mix of ROTTING CHRIST, SENTENCED and older MEGADETH"), RIBSPREADER featuring EDGE OF SANITY's Dan Swanö ("unbelievable old-school Swedish death metal") and JUDGMENT DAY from The Netherlands...BALANCE OF POWER will issue its latest album Heathen Machine in the U.S.A. in March through DCA/Century Media...KINGDOM COME's new album Perpetual is described as "a deeper, hookier, more multi-faceted album than it's predecessor Independent."...ALMA MATER has a new bassist called Nico...MYSTERY BLUE has signed a deal with the Italian label Adrenaline Records. The band's Metal Slaves demo will be released by Steelheart Records, the heavy metal sub-division of Adrenaline Records...Sweden's THE RING is a Tolkien-inspired band whose Tales From Midgard album will be released in May by Scarlet Records. The release constitutes the first part of a planned trilogy. THE RING also features former RAINBOW singer Doogie White...IRON SAVIOR, with new bass player Yenz Leonhardt, has recorded at the Powerhouse Studio in Hamburg, Germany. The new album is called Metalizer and features fourteen songs...NEVERMORE is shooting a video for the song I Voyager with Zack Merck (SHADOWS FALL, etc.) directing...Majestic Records is rereleasing the two albums of CHARIOT, originally issued in the mid-80's, on CD...HAMMERFALL vocalist JOACIM CANS has signed a solo contract with Sanctuary Records. Cans' first album, entitled Beyond The Gates, features bassist Matt Sinner (SINNER), guitarist Mike Chlasciak (ex-HALFORD, PAINMUSEUM), guitarist Stefan Elmgren (also in HAMMERFALL) and drummer Mark Zonder (FATES WARNING). Beyond The Gates is out through Noise Records in April...DESTINY will now release its new album, Future Of The Past, on March 5th through GMR in Scandinavia...Thundering Records has issued the Requiem Tenebrae CD of AEGIRSON...SCORPIONS has announced the recruitment of bassist Pawel Maciwoda (SECTION 31, URBANATOR) into the group. The band is mixing its forthcoming album at the moment...JACOBS DREAM has added vocalist Chaz Bond to the group's ranks. Chaz is formerly of the crossover band BIOGENESIS...SKID ROW has lost drummer Phil Varone (formerly of SAIGON KICK) for "personal reasons." The band has replaced Varone with Tim DiDuro...SLICK, the Illinois-based band featuring former members of RADAKKA and REBELS WITHOUT APPLAUSE, features Dean Maltese (vocals and bass), Jon Dobbs (guitar), Mark Alano (guitar) and Frank Alongi (drums)...AEROSMITH recently performed at Super Bowl XXXVIII. The event almost did not go ahead following a series of differences on time and space between band and event organizers. AEROSMITH has announced a 40-city North American tour in support of the new album, Honkin' On Bobo. CHEAP TRICK will open...Former THIN LIZZY/MOTÖRHEAD guitarist Brian Robertson will play a couple of dates as a special guest with FIVE FIFTEEN in Scandinavia at the end of February...ANNIHILATOR has picked All For You as the title of the forthcoming CD, tentatively due in May through AFM Records. In the meanwhile, Russell Bergquist has vacated the bassist position in ANNIHILATOR...STORMLORD has completed work on its third album, The Gorgon Cult, at The Outer Sound Studios in Italy with engineer Giuseppe Orlando (NOVEMBRE, NECRODEATH, DGM, THY MAJESTIE, etc.) producing...RAZORBACK is the new band of singer Stefan Berggren (ex-COMPANY OF SNAKES), guitarist Rolf Munkes (MAJESTY, ex-VANIZE), guitarist Chris Heun (ex-SHYLOCK), bassist Marcus Bielenberg (ex-VANIZE) and drummer Pierre Fienhold (ex-VANIZE). The band has signed with Germany's Massacre Records. RAZORBACK is entering the studio next month...Guitarist Brian Tilse and bassist J.J. both of FIGHT have joined LOLLIPOP LUST KILL...TESLA guitarist Frank Hannon is working on a record with his own band KALEIDOSCOPE. TESLA itself will be supporting the release of its new album Into The Now, due out March 9, by gigging in the US through the end of summer...WINDIR singer Valfar (a.k.a. Terje Bakken) was found dead on Friday, January 16th. He was 25 years old. According to his fellow band members Bakken died of hypothermia while trekking in the snow...PLATITUDE's new album Nine is complete and will be released by Scarlet Records in April. It was produced by Tommy Hansen...HELIX is preparing a new studio album and a thirtieth anniversary video. The studio album is due in March, although the band has yet to find a record company...Denmark's FORCE OF EVIL, featuring Mercyful Fate members, has signed a deal with Escapi Music for the release of its self-titled debut...Montreal's veteran act THUNDER RIDER has released a new 15-song CD and LP called Thunder Rider, Tales of Darkness And Light - Chapter II. The band can be contacted via e-mail at email@example.com...INTENSE has recorded an album called Second Sight at Thin Ice Studios in Surrey, England with Karl Groom (THRESHOLD) producing. The band has signed with Italy's Underground Symphony, which will release the album in March...FastLane Records will soon release the debut of BANG THE UNION called American Dream. The label is also issuing MIKE GALLAGHER's Sonic Universe CD...Rock Hard magazine is reporting that bassist Jimmy Bain is no longer part of the DIO line-up and has formed a band with drummer Vinnie Appice (formerly of DIO and BLACK SABBATH) and guitarist Carlos Cavazo (QUIET RIOT) in a new project. The band has picked Chas West (BONHAM) to sing...Former BELIEVER drummer Joey Daub has resurfaced in FOUNTAIN OF TEARS...KING'S X has announced plans to headline a US tour in May. No specifics have been announced. In related news, KING'S X drummer JERRY GASKILL will release his first solo album Come Somewhere on April 27th through InsideOut Music...Metal Blade's DISILLUSION has finished work on its album Back To Times Of Splendor. Featuring songs like Fall, Alone I Stand In Fire and the title track, "This album is a mixture of several metal styles, combined in harmony in a perfect way," according to Metal Blade...According to Arise Records, the Italian metal act HIGHLORD is just finishing the recording of its fourth album entitled Medusa's Coil at New Sin Studios. The new album will be released in May...The video for RIVETHEAD's song Regret is now available at http://www.rivetheadonline.com...LYZANXIA has signed a deal with the American label Reality Entertainment which will be releasing the new album Mindcrimes on March 9th, 2004. LYZANXIA has already released Mindcrimes in Japan and France...Singer Stephen Pearcy has completed work on his album of re-recorded RATT 'classics,' which also features guitarist George Lynch on select songs. This album is due out this summer...SLAUGHTER will release a compilation CD through Capitol Records in April. The band will also be touring and releasing a DVD this summer...BLACK LABEL SOCIETY's new album will likely be entitled Hangover Music, Vol. 1. The release is expected this autumn through Spitfire Records...A new HOUSE OF LORDS album called The Power & The Myth is released through Frontiers Records on March 15th...AYREON, the project of Dutch guitarist Arjen Lucassen (ex-BODINE, VENGEANCE), has re-signed with InsideOut Records. Lucassen's next release for InsideOut will be the CD The Human Equation which is tentatively due in May...Anders Johansson (HAMMERFALL) has officially left STRATOVARIUS less than a week after joining the group. According to HAMMERFALL's website, he never officially committed to STRATOVARIUS...Century Media Records has joined forces with New Jersey-based label Now Or Never Records. This collaboration will result in The Century Family handling the manufacturing, marketing, and distribution of Now Or Never releases ...ANVIL has announced March 29th for the release for the new album, entitled Back To Basics. The album will be issued through Massacre Records. The follow-up to 2002's Still Going Strong was recorded with producer Pierre Rémillard...LIONSHEART, fronted by former GRIM REAPER/ONSLAUGHT singer Steve Grimmett, has signed to Frontiers Records. The group's fourth studio album Abyss is tentatively due in April...Switzerland's EMERALD has set February 23rd as the release date for its third full-length album through Shark Records. The album is called Forces Of Doom...IRON MAIDEN was forced to cut short its show at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City on the 24th of January after a fan reportedly dropped beer on the soundboard, causing it to malfunction. Another show two nights later had to be cancelled altogether, ostensibly due to booking conflicts...BLAZE has finalized the track listing for its new album Blood And Belief. It is tentatively due in March through SPV Records...DEATH & TAXES, a hard rock band composed of veteran musicians, is scheduled to release its CD in April. Entitled Waste Of A Perfectly Good CD, DEATH & TAXES is staffed by Jay Link on vocals, Michael Cutting of HOLY SOLDIER on guitars, David Starkey on bass, and Paul Monroe of XYZ on the drums...METALIUM has pushed back the European release date for its new album, As One - Chapter Four, to March 29th. It will be issued through Armageddon Products/Soulfood Records.
CRASHDIET - same
The latest diet fad doesn't come from South Beach, it comes from Sweden! The glam metal cover photograph of the band would lead one to believe that Crashdiet is a new Wrathchild or an early Tigertailz clone; instead this is a hard rock and heavy metal band. The image will probably turn and throw certain people off. It will be their loss. These Swedes are a cross between early Def Leppard, Lizzy Borden, Skid Row vocally (on the last two songs) and even incorporate a couple of Motorhead-ish guitar solos - no kidding! This is impressive stuff and melodic metal fans should not hesitate to get into the regimen by visiting www.crashdiet.org. Otherwise, the only advice one could give the band is to get the drum sound and mix in order for the next recording. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org and ask to speak to Dave Lepard. Yup, these guys are very funny. - Ali "The Metallian"
TORIAN - INTO THE WINTER
Torian will appeal to all fans of true, genuine, vintage and pure heavy metal. Into The Winter is the Germans very first demo and, judging by the the three songs Torian, Into The Winter and Born To Win, this band has a good future ahead of it. The songs are already professional and the band's knack for mixing heaviness with melody works. It is genuinely gratifying to see and hear younger bands expanding on - not exiting - the tenets of heavy metal. Torian does not exactly sound like any one band, but if influencse had to be named Hammerfall and Rage would be bands one would mention. Marc Hohlweck can occasionally sound like the first Candlemass singer as his voice reminds me of the Epicus Doomicus Metallicus album. Speaking of which, the MCD's mix clearly favours the vocals. About the only thing Torian is lacking is more guitar solos, something that should not be far behind once the members' skills improve. This demo can be had for $7 via the band's internet address at www.torian-legion.de. For more information e-mail them at email@example.com. - Ali "The Metallian"
STILLBIRTH - TRAUMA
Stillbirth is a harsh and cold metal band from Italy that once treaded the land using the name Cloning Technology. The vocals are deep and the backing vocals angry. The drummer hits hard and the guitars are simplistic and direct in their attack. A couple of segments, like Deadly Virus' middle, sound like Iron Maiden, but these guys are completely unforgiving and harder than Maiden. The band is more rhythmic than riff-oriented and may not be the most original or technical group out there in metalland, but sure knows how to exude heaviness. The best thing about these Italians is the many vocal parts. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.stillbirth.it. - Sheila Wes Det
SUPERVILLAIN - same
Supervillain is indeed a cool band. Let me explain. The NYC-based quintet, featuring former Murphy's Law and Blitzspeer drummer Louie Gasparro, has issued a five-song CD that is a thrill to hear. The band puts its best foot forward with the song Wartorn. Singer Morgan Adams can sing and exudes an emotional togetherness that is quite rare nowadays. The band is part doomy and part hard rocking and comes across as having been influenced by Prong, Cathedral and Love/Hate. The odd part might be that the aforementioned bands have probably not influenced the band. The band's music just attracts the comparison. In fact, Supervillain is a nonconformist band featuring the singer as mentioned, a guitarist who can play leads, a present bass sound and a fantastic drummer who circumvents the pots and panish sounds of his contemporaries in favour of a heavy sound.
Going back to the particular tracks, and aside from the brilliant opener which is about the 9/11 tragedy, Lyin Eyes and Aggrophobic are additional aces. The latter does remind the listener of AC/DC, Quiet Riot or Love/Hate occasionally though - a comparison that the band might deem curious. If a criticism has to be levelled at the band, it would be the slight synthesizer background on One Hundred Lives which detracts from the tune and the presumably digital mistake mid-way on the same song.
Overall Supervillain is a great hard rock/heavy metal band that is feeling what it is playing. Add to that good musicianship and a good sound and next thing one needs is an address to write to. Try either e-mailing email@example.com or visit www.musicrelams.com/supervillian. - Ali "The Metallian"
CEA SERIN - ...WHERE MEMORIES COMBINE
In a letter Cea Serin's main man J. Lamm writes, "I hope you find all the hidden musical details and efforts that was put into it..." That would be nearly impossible. Where Memories Combine is a brilliant independent production which surpasses expectation and staggers the mind. The fifty-minute-long disc is an intricate and skilled musical canvas blessed with irreproachable sound. This material could have easily appeared on any Queensryche or Dream Theater album and counted as some of those bands' better works. It is shocking to hear bands like this are roaming the land without a recording contract. No matter, Cea Serin's two main protagonists should be ecstatic with their baby. The band's achilles heal though is the lack of a live drummer. A suitable drummer has been found and the band will probably not repeat the mistake of replacing a human with a machine in the future. Despite the setback of having recorded with a machine, ...Where Memories Combine remains some of the most accomplished progressive hard rock ever recorded. Expect unerring music, a major sound recording and original artwork on the band's latest release. Fans of the genre should get hold of this from J. Lamm, 147 Cockerham Rd. Denham Springs, LA 70726 U.S.A or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. - Ali "The Metallian"
DEMONS TO PREFER - THE STOLEN RAT RECORDINGS '03
Demons To Prefer is a Lynkoping-based band, which immediately reminds this writer of the excellent Seance. For good reason too, take a closer look and Demons To Prefer's members turn out also to be members of Satanic Slaughter and Corporation 187! The names Viktor Klint and Filip Carlsson should be familiar to thrash hounds. The band is none too eager to advertise the association though.
Is Demons To Prefer a suitably thrashy outfit then? Despite being a continuation of the thrash band Thornclad, Demons To Prefer is in fact a melancholic rock act. Songs like Enter Utopia, Paranoia King and Demons To Prefer are dark rock songs that sound like an amalgamation of the Finnish melodic sound, vibe of Danzig and a whisper of the vocals of James Hetfield. The sound is good and the band has a forlorn, yet catchy atmosphere. Fans and interested parties can contact the band for information or the professional CD, but should not expect anything like Corporation 187. One could also take the opportunity to ask what the demo's title means! Write to Victor klint, Hummlegatan 4A, 582 54 Linkoping Sweden or e-mail email@example.com. - Ali "The Metallian"
MALEFIC - same
Malefic is a British death metal band reminiscent of Cancer. The band has a harsh sound and is rough around the edges. The vocals are treated with a raucous effect and often backed up. Curiously the quintet has opted to stick its best track, entitled Tunnel Vision, at the end of the CD. This song has a melody reminiscent of Amon Amarth, a cool solo (although another good lead can be heard on the second track Alone) and a strong bass presence. By and large though, Malefic is a straight-ahead, no-frills, no-nonsense malignant metal act with energy to spare. Write to Stuart Pendergast, 22 Harvey Lane, Golborne WA3 3R5 UK which is somewhere between Manchester and Liverpool or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. - Ali "The Metallian"
ZENITH - EVILUTION
Zenith is a self-described crossover band from Denmark whose Evilution demo features three songs called Give Me 'Till Tomorrow, 1-2-3 Imprisoned For Life and What Da Ya Want. The band is not kidding around with the crossover description. The material is a cross between Danzig (vocally - sometimes), Pantera (the slamming riffs) and Dying Fetus (the deep growl-o-rama, riffs, etc). The band nods towards mallcore at times, which is regrettable, but has enough goodies for the metal fan to be of interest. The songs are long and blessed by yet another great production courtesy of the infallible Jacob Hansen. The disc and the artwork are professional as well making the CD even more value for money.
Zenith could use a couple more solos and has a cliched demo title, but is an impressive act nevertheless. Write to email@example.com for more information. - Ali "The Metallian" P.S.: Love the overdub of the moaning slut over the 'Noone ever fucks around with me' line.
SERPENT - DOMINATOR
In 1995 there used to be another Swedish Serpent. This Serpent is not that Serpent. This Swedish Serpent is another Swedish Serpent.
Serpent anno 2003 is a death/thrash act whose third demo is called Dominator. This band has the right intent and goes at work in a hard and heavy fashion. The vocals are deep and menacing and the rhythm rather sharp. The lead guitars are the band's best aspect though. Guitarist Tyr does a commendable job. The jury, however, is out on whether the band is using a real drummer or not. In either case, the 'drumming' has to improve. Were the band to get a convincing drummer and eliminate the, admittedly rare, keyboard appearance things will certainly look even better for the band. Contact the band c/o Tuvvagen 11 3 tr, 136 39 Haninge Sweden or slither over to fade.to/serpent for more information. - Ali "The Metallian"
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