Trimonium is entering the studio imminently to record its second album...Norway's Grimnorth has signed to Hak Productions...Germany's Solemnity has signed to Remedy Records. Immediate plans include the re-release of the band's independent CD...Dysrhythmia has signed with Relapse Records...Finland's Burialmound appears on the Woodcut Records compilation CD Jatkosota...Bay Area thrashers Vio-lence is re-releasing the band's debut Eternal Nightmare this autumn. The band is also playing live and have a web site at www.vio-lence.com...Impiety is recording its third album at Berno Studio (Seance, Insision, etc.). Entitled Kaos Kommand 696, the album is due via Osmose Productions, in October...Pete Helmkamp (Order From Chaos and Angelcorpse) has joined Revenge...Rumour has a new Dissection album appearing in 2004 with Bard Faust (Emperor) on drums...Nameless Nemesis' debut album will be recorded this August and released via Hak Production...Immolation's Unholy Cult has now been confirmed for a November release. The cover art is being done by Andreas Marschall and is 'creepier' according to the band. A live DVD is also scheduled for early next year...Japan's Abigail has confirmed six shows in California for November of 2002...Necroblaspheme has signed with up-start French label Destructive Records and hopes to release its album in September...For a video of Insision's album release party, also featuring openers Nominon, contact the band via www.insision.com...Divine Rapture has ended work on a video for the song Spirit Storm Serenade from The Burning Passion CD. The video was directed by photographer Aaron Cobbett. The band, additionally, has a split CD with Hatred available on Under the Baphomet Records, and will soon release a split CD with Craniotomy out on Immortal Souls Productions. The band is also appearing on a Morbid Angel Tribute album...The Forsaken has a new bassist by the name of Stefan Berg. Berg was road-tested during the recent European excursion with Grave...Cattle Decapitation's imminent album has been banned from the stores by Metal Blade's German distributor SPV due to 'the brutal artwork.'...Vader's Revelations was placed at position 20 in the Polish Top-100 in May. The band is heading to Japan in October and following it up with a North American tour with Immolation...Metal Blade has announced that the release date for Dies Irae's The Sin War has been postponed to September. Tracks include Comrade of Death and Infinity...Kevin Camille (Voices Forming Weapons and Roswell) has replaced the drummer in Beyond The Embrace...Amon Amarth's next album will be called Versus The World. To be recorded in August at Berno Studio (Insision, Vomitory, Seance, etc.) the album will feature songs like the title track, ...And Soon The World Will Cease To Be and Death In Fire...Ancient's Spanish tour planned for June were cancelled ostensibly due to organizational problems with the clubs...Six Feet Under recently cut short their US tour due to, 'some personal matters that members of the band had to take care of'...Roland Schuschke is out of Callenish Circle. Chemical Breath guitarist Rene Rokx is his replacement...Reverend has pulled out of this August's Abrasive Rock Fest because the band was offered the chance to open for Judas Priest in Texas...Konkhra's planned show in Turkey fell through recently after the organizer failed to mail the necessary contracts. The next album is still due for October...Baphomet Records has signed Obscene Eulogy...Guitarist Anders Björler has rejoined The Haunted. The guitarist had left the band last year to pursue his studies, but has reconsidered. The band is entering Studio Fredman in August...Suture is recording an album for Deepsend Records entitled Carnivorous Urge To Kill. The label has also signed Sect Of Execration...Scattered Remnants is looking for a drummer. Please contact email@example.com...Blood Red Throne is at work in the studio recording Affiliated With The Suffering...Thrashers Demon Of Dirt are recording a new album for Hammerheart Records...Metal Fortress is now managing Satariel...Dream Evil Records has announced the release of French band Imperial's Moonblood (Ten years of Imperial) on red vinyl 7'. the EP is limited to 333 copies...Hypnosia has officially disbanded...Ukraine's Hate Forest has finished work on album number three Purity. The album will appear on Supernal Music...The Mayhem/Meads Of Asphodel split 10' was recently delayed after the manufacturer sought reassurances from Supernal Music regarding the content...Death To Mankind Records has issued Spear Of Longinus' Nada Brahma / Nazi Occult Metal 12'...Hatesphere's Bloodred Hatred is complete and due this autumn through Scarlet Records...Divine Souls is in studio Soundcreation recording an album called The Bitter Selfcaged Man...Law Of The Plague and producer Tracy Schroeder are at Reflection Sound Studios in Charlotte, NC recording a CD for this autumn. The band is looking for a new bassist. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you are from the US East Coast...Conquer Records reports that April Ethereal and Hell-Born will be recording new albums very soon. The former's album will be called Al Azif and will be recorded at Poland's Green Studio in Krakow. The latter are at Hertz Studio in Bialystok, Poland...Tomas Lindberg has left The Crown. The band has recruited its original singer Johan Lindstrand for live commitments...Jared Anderson is the latest singer out of Morbid Angel. The remaining duo in the band are in Louisiana writing songs...Scarve is continuing a recent string of dates with No Return and Dew-Scented with shows with label-mates Reclusion. The Listenable recording artists are working on a video for Emulate The Soul which is due in October...Severe Torture, on tour with Cannibal Corpse in September, will release Misanthropic Carnage in August via Hammerheart Records...Fleshgrind drummer Alan Collado is out of the band. Fleshgrind is seeking a replacement...Osmose Production's Antaeus will support their new album De Principii Evangelikum (due in September) via a support tour with Deicide...Lyzanxia has finished working on the mix for their album Mindcrimes with Fredrik Nordström and Patrick J at Studio Fredman...Norway's Mindgrinder has signed to Soundriot Records. The band's debut will be recorded at Akkerhaugen Lydstudios and due early 2003...A new Infernal Majesty album called One Who Points To Death is due early next year...Violation's next album, and follow up to Moonlight's Child, is due to be recorded in August at the Abyss Studio. No label has been found yet...Harmony Dies has signed to Morbid Records.
Dokken's new guitarist is Italy's Alex De Rosso who has several solo albums in his past. He has also played and toured with David Reece in the eighties. Previous guitarist John Norum was fired by Dokken in May...Mentors have announced an August tour of the US Midwest and East Coast. According to the band 'proceeds will go towards the Robert Blake Defense Fund.' Blake is the recently-arrested Hollywood actor...Michael Vescera Project has signed to Mascot Records...The Great Kat's latest album entitled Wagner's War is now out. According to the feline guitarist, "after the Vicious and Insane Terrorist attacks on my city - New York City - I have decided to confront these barbarians with shred/classical music!!"...Cathedral is in the studio recording a new album with producer Kit Woolven...For news on Joe Lynn Turner, including the track listing for his next album, please visit www.joelynnturner.com...Tad Morose have been writing as of yet untitled songs for a new album. The band expects to work at a different studio and with a producer this time around having often self-produced in the past. The band's Christer "Krunt" Anderson has been selected as the honourary ambassador of his town Bollnäs by that town's politicians. Fans can see the band at the Milwaukee Metal Fest...MTV 2 has added Soilwork's As We Speak video to rotation on Extreme Rock, while Much Music has done the same for Canada via Much Loud...According to guitarist Dan Lorenzo, Hades is on indefinite hiatus. The band may reappear for special shows or festivals. In the meanwhile the guitarist is writing 'non-Hades type stuff'...Riot's next album, Through The Storm, is due August 26 through Metal Blade...Maquiavel records has inked a Canadian distribution agreement with PHD Canada. The label's first Canadian signing Kralizec will have a debut entitled Origin ready for September...Avidost has recruited drummer Matt Block formerly of Night On Armon...Balance Of Power singer Lance King recently laid down vocals for the forthcoming Defyance album...Vanden Plas drummer Andreas Lill will play on the next Winterlong album...Morifade can be heard in Sweden on a TV commercial for Norrlands Guld beer...Mexico's Hak Productions has a new sub-division entitled Doom Records. The latter will function as a label, while the former will handle publicity...Raven has cancelled all live appearances, including Wacken, due to guitarist Mark Gallagher's leg injury...Due to personal matters Blaze's drummer Jeff Singer had to pull out of the band's live dates with Overkill. Doro's Johnny Dee replaced him. Both bands are sharing the stage at several festivals this summer...Doro, whose new album is called Fight, has been added to the Bang Your Head Festival after Magnum pulled out...In Ratt-related news, Juan Croucier's Liquid Sunday will open for Stephen Pearcy this summer. Croucier is actually in both bands...Dale Clabeaux, formerly of Down To The Shake, has replaced singer Jeff Dean in Revolution Hazy...Germany's Mob Rules has announced a new album, entitled Hallowed Be Thy Name, for this September. The album will be preceded by the single Lord Of Madness...Belgium's Crusader is at Midas Studios in Lokeren to record its second album...Savatage's next album is called Stories...Italy's DGM has signed to Scarlet Records. Also on the label, Centurion will have its new album, entitled Non Plus Ultra, released in September...Prong, (a.k.a. Tommy Victor) recently replaced Marduk on Danzig's US trek. Prong, whose next album is a live CD due in October, is also playing several European festivals this summer...Biomechanical has almost completed work on its debut full-length Eight Moons...Chile's Zafira is negotiating with Hak Productions. The band hopes to record its debut at the end of this year...Tourniquet is writing music for a new album due at the end of the year on Metal Blade. Recording will begin in September with Bill Metoyer...Z Records is releasing Brighton Rock's A Room For Five - Live, Phil Naro's Glass Mountain and Shy's Unfinished Business in August. A Von Groove album is due in September...Dave Meniketti's solo CD will finally be released in August...In a surprise move most of the Megadeth alumni, David Ellefson, Jimmy DeGrasso, Al Pitrelli and Marty Friedman, have banded together and are auditioning singers...Enuff Z Nuff's new album Welcome To Blue Island is out this month in Japan...Jon Lord has rejoined Deep Purple for the rest of 2002...Frontiers Records has announced the completion of a new Hardline album. Featuring songs like All Night and Do Or Die, the album is due on September 23rd.
TOXIC VIRGIN - CIRCLE OF POWER
Circle Of Power is the third demo CD of these German hard rockers from Krefeld and is a full-length chock full of punchy melodies, up-tempo rockers, powerful backing vocals and originality. The disc kicks off with the album's better songs Broken Wings and Son Of The Sun. The former Starts with a cute little melody developing into a big rock riff. Boy, these boys can play! The vocalist might be an acquired taste, but big sound and up beat hard rock join forces to kick up some dust through thirteen tracks. Toxic Virgin often bleeds into AOR and heavy metal territory! Until The End begins and ends like an old Neil Young song and is a slow and poppy song. Sailor is another sing-along fun romp. The silly matter of keyboard used in the background and a couple of the slower songs aside, Toxic Virgin is a great hard rock listen. Visit www.toxicvirgin.de or write to Carlo Bertini. Westwall 181, 47798 Krefeld.
ODIUM - A NEW BEGINNING...
Based out of Germany and not to be confused with the Polish or Norwegian bands of the same name, Odium is a band whose sound is not easily comparable to other acts. Looking for clues early on, the band name hints at Morgoth. Wrong! Then there is the cover with the depiction of one of the monks from Testament's Souls Of Black. Getting warmer! There is a little of Testament here - especially on the harder tracks like No One But Me. There is also some Jag Panzer here. Odium though is mostly heavy metal without direct comparisons to other acts. The band's weakness is not Reinhard Runkel's voice, but rather his breath and power. There is some nice drumming at the beginning and throughout the aforementioned song. Brainscreen is a catchy tune which is played more slowly than the song warrants. The song which sticks the most in your mind is Swallow (The Bitter Pill) - no, not Motley Crue - and leads into the only lyricless song in turn called Count The Cost. On a whole the band has a warm and clear sound and a full length's worth of material so get in touch either via www.odium-metal.de or Hauptstrasse 30b, 63594 Hasselroth Germany.
GRIND MINDED - YOUR SUFFERRING WILL BE LEGENDARY...
Grind Minded! They couldn't make their intentions any clearer, could they? Based out of The Netherlands and a new band, Goliath (vocals), Knerry (guitars), Balrog (bass) and Bakvet (drums) have assembled six songs here which suffers much due to a muddled sound. Probably recorded on an eight-track machine, the CD nonetheless showcases a band mixing death metal with slower almost doomy passages. The vocals are harsh and the guitars grating. There is nothing here that revolutionary or even evolutionary; just a workman like delivery of underground music. Get your sound up, work on a few keener arrangements and we will speak again. Until then, whether the spelling in the title is deliberate or not is anyone's guess. Contact the band c/o Filthy Records, Wethouderbuningstr. 42, 9404 Am Assen The Netherlands.
BLESSED - LAST BREATH BEFORE THE FLESH
Going back several months to the review of Blessed's Consume 3000 demo, we remarked about how the Swedes are from Gothenburg yet sound closer to Hypocrisy than that city's other progeny. On the new three-song CD, the band (now apparently and thankfully featuring a drummer) has compressed its sound and delivered more good music. Fixation is slower and has the aura of slower Morbid Angel. Segment is next and alternates between tempos as well as death metal and thrash metal riffs. The voice has been processed. Come Fire is adventurous and deathrashy. The effect is partially ruined by the choppy drumming though. Otherwise Blessed both features a couple of speedy riffs and David Vincent/Morbid Angel interludes. It is not brilliant, but does have an above average underground technique to it. Better yet, despite the address skips the weak tactics of many of its locals colleagues. Visit http://go.to/blessed or send money to Ungell, Tunnbindaregatan 3A, 417 03 Gothenburg Sweden.
GERBE OF LIFE - Promo Tape
France just does not get the death/grind credit it deserves. This country probably has more brutal bands than any other country, and yet you would be hard-pressed to find one that is properly signed. Remember Inhumate? Based out of Lille, Gerbe Of Life is a death-oriented grindcore band with the vocals so low they are scrapping the asphalt. The music is tuned down as well with the whole affair only broken up by the occasional classical or ambient chanting. The bass sound is specially threatening - when you can hear it that is. The band's web site was not AWOL when checked last so send $5 to 10, rue Moliere appt. 2C, 59000 Lille France or email email@example.com for more information.
BURIED GOD - DARK REVELATION
Dark Revelation is billed as, 'advance tape for forthcoming album' by the band and so the tape, featuring no less than ten songs, is a full-length and professionally-recorded exercise in thrash metal. Funny too that the band should be so thrashy given the blackened moniker and the altogether evil-looking logo. Still, and as mentioned, these guys are pure thrash and best comparable to bands like Artillery, Kreator and Holy Moses. In other words, you would be hard-pressed to find any of the boring chuggachugga riffing of American bands here. What you do get is a trio playing fast music with very respectable soloing - if only they would incorporate more of them. Cover versions are a dime a dozen surely, but Buried God's choice, at least, is a rare one in the form of Griffin's Hunger. Check out www.buriedgod.cjb.net for more on these thrashers.
DR. BRAINDEAD - THE BRAIN
Here is something different. Dr. Braindead is the alter ego of one Dirk Sendt who has created five musicians (Nednomasih, Shiegeh, Kazalee, etc.) to play on this CD. This then being a one-man project the music is accompanied by a drum machine. Still there are a couple of interesting things happening here. Musically Dr. Braindead sounds like a melodic Sodom. The good doctor hammers away at the senses, yet manages a few respectable leads throughout. The sound is clear and the mix just right. Lyrically, the reader is in for a treat. Coming across as American Psycho-meets-Spanish Inquisition, the lyric sheet dispenses with the chorus/verse formula in favour of longer story lines with a Yoda-tendency. 'Full of confidence he is,' (The Sect) or 'What a heavy stone it was' (Dr. Braindead) are two examples. Reading the lyric sheet is lots of fun given the stories. All in all, this is one doctor's visit that will guarantee a deterioration, rather than improvement to your health. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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