OCCULT has just left Stage One Studios in Germany where they recorded theirfifth album. Entitled Elegy For The Weak, the full-length was produced andengineered by Andy Classen. The album will appear this October on PainkillerRecords. The band is also working on a DVD independently...On Friday June28th, members of INCANTATION and FUNERUS (featuring Jill McEntee wife ofINCANTATION leader John) were involved in a car accident in Australia on theway to a show in Melbourne. While all involved received minor injuries, theshow went on with a replacement drummer backing INCANTATION...DARKANE areentering the studio in September to record a new album for Nuclear Blastwhich is expected to be out in February...EMPTINESS has signed a deal fortwo albums with Painkiller Records. The Belgians are recording a debutcalled Guilty To Exist with producer which is due for release inOctober...Daniël Centiago has joined CROMM CRUAC on bass.The new bassist isalso active in the band ESCUTCHEON...Norway's HATEPULSE has signed with RageOf Achilles. The band's In extenso Letalis demo will be released as a MCD onJuly 28th. A full-length will follow in early 2004...Former SINISTER andHOUWITSER singer Mike van Mastrigt has teamed up with former RADIATHORguitarist Walter.Tjwa, guitarist J.G and drummer Michel in a group calledDEATH SQUAD The band performed live on June 14 in Rotterdam, TheNetherlands....A GENERAL SURGERY/THE COUNTY MEDICAL EXAMINERS split-CD hasbeen released by Razorback Records...SUFFOCATION will do several US showsthis August...KREATOR's first live album is called Live Kreation and out nowthrough SPV. The band has also released a DVD companion called Live Kreation- Revisioned Glory...The Ajna Offensive label has just released a new 7"single featuring ROOT(CZ) and ATOMIZER. The EP is limited to 666 copies. Thelabel has also licensed FUNERAL MIST's Salvation record for the Americanterritory...Swedish thrashers DENATA report that their new album Art Of TheInsane has been mastered and is currently being mastered. Arctic Music Groupwill issue the CD in September...Hammerheart Records has recruited Finnishdeath metal combo TORTURE KILLER. The band started out as a side-project,but has now become a full-time act featuring members of ADRAMELECH andDEMIGOD. The album For Maggots To Devour will be released in latesummer...HIRAX is heading to Australia for tour this summer. The band alsoplayed at the Bang Your Head Festival on June 28th...Khaaranus Productionsof Czech Republic has released a MCD by CEREBRAL TURBULENCY called Germ OfError. The MCD features 13 songs and lasts 18 minutes...Greece's MysticumProductions has released CELESTIA's Crucified Dead Flesh LP (contains thedeleted MCD Cave Full Of Bats plus previously unreleased studio track andfive rehearsal tracks), VERMETH's Your Ruins LP (featuring ex-members ofTORGEIST) and WIND OF THE BLACK MOUNTAINS' Sing Thou Unholy Servants LP (theband's original release now on vinyl). Each LP is released in strictlylimited edition of 200...Sound Riot Records has signed VICIOUS. The band isa melodic death metal act from Sweden featuring Henrik Wenngren of SKYFIREon vocals...ANTHRAX recently filmed a video for the song Safe Home, culledfrom the We've Come for You All album, featuring a cameo by Keanu Reeves.The band will tour North America beginning August...SEVERE TORTURE, HATEETERNAL, DYING FETUS and DEEDS OF FLESH are scheduled to tour Europetogether in September...NUCLEAR ASSAULT's Alive Again comeback album is nowout through Screaming Ferret Wreckords/SPV...BELPHEGOR has finished work onits new album, entitled Lucifer Incestus. The album was produced by AlexKrull and due out in October...Furias Records and Orion Music Entertainmenthave the following new releases: HEULEND HORN's The Saga Of The Draugr(metal with ambient elements), ECLIPTIC SUNSET's From These Dried Lands(black metal), PRION's Time Of Plagues, DIVE IN MINDS' Innocent Victims(Progressive Death Metal ) and MITTERNACHT's The Desolation Of Blendenstein(symphonic and ambient music mixed with metal)...Dutch death metal bandDEVIOUS has signed a contract with Spitzenburg Records. Expect the debutalbum Acts Of Rage next month...MAPLE CROSS, which just completed dates inEngland and Finland, has shot a video for the song Au Revoir. The band hopesto head back to the UK in the autumn...PYREXIA and its label RexxCorp. havesigned a three year exclusive distribution deal for North America and Europewith Crash Music. Look for a new album very soon...HADES ALMIGHTY ispreparing material for a new album. The band has also signed to KhaozProductionz for its management...Due to personal differences ANCIENT RITESdecided to ask Jan Yrlund (ex-LACRIMOSA/PRESTIGE) to leave the band afterthe Generation Armageddon Tour. Guitarist Bart Vandereycken, responsible forthe guitar work on the first two ANCIENT RITES albums, is back with thatband. His first return show with the band is at Numirock Festival. inFinland...DIVINE EMPIRE, SKINLESS and MISERY INDEX are touring the USA...THEHAUNTED, KATAKLYSM and SHAI HULUD just ended a number of US shows...MORBIDANGEL has entered D.O.W. (Diet Of Worms) Studios in Seffner, Florida, torecord an album. Tentatively dubbed H2K3, the album is expected inDecember...GRAVE and IMMOLATION just finished playing across the USA. Thelatter band is releasing a live DVD later this year...The Italian bandCONSPIRACY has just signed a three-album deal with Crash Music. The band'sdebut is expected in September...MALEVOLENT CREATION is touring Brazil thismonth. Several shows will be filmed for a live video. The band is alsoplaying at the Wacken and Party San Open Air festivals in Europe...UNHOLYGHOST has finished shooting a video for the track Under Existence withdirector/producer Scott Semple...The New DEBRISTREAM album Trust The Insaneis complete and will be released by Toluene Recordings this month...LORDBELIAL have replaced drummer Michael Backelin with Daniel Moilanen formerlyof RUNEMAGICK and RELEVANT FEW...Following their latest gig in Israel VADERparted ways with bassist Simon (bass) due to personal differences. Novy(well-known for his participation in bands like BEHEMOTH and DEVILYN) hasjoined the band as his replacement. VADER will play its first show with thenew line-up on 19th of July in the Czech Republic...IMPIETY reports that theband almost broke up recently due to financial difficulties. The band hasremained intact, however, and will play at the sixth Annual Under the BlackSun Festival 2003 in Berlin and at the Formoz Festival 2003 in Taipei,Taiwan this month. A number of shows were cancelled recentlythough...THROCULT's Soldiers Of A Blackened War is now out through CrashMusic. The band has lost keyboardist Brian in the meanwhile...BRUJERIA, theband of former FEAR FACTORY guitarist Dino Cazares, is looking for a labelto release a 'greatest hits' package soon...Jon Nödtvedt, the main man ofthe resurrected DISSECTION, is looking for a new bassist and guitarist.Applicants should write to Dissection, Mail Box 209,111 73 Stockholm Sweden.The band is expected to enter Abyss Studio next winter to beginrecording...Death Cult Armageddon, the latest offering from Norway¹s DIMMUBORGIR, has just finished being mixed at Studio Fredman in Gothenburg,Sweden. Several song titles are, Eradication Instincts Defined, For TheWorld To Dictate Our Death and Lepers Among Us. The album will be out inSeptember...HYPOCRISY has begun working on a brand new disc. The tentativetitle is Arrival...BLO.TORCH guitarist Marvin Vriesde, who also guested lastyear with Dew-Scented, has joined SEVERE TORTURE... California's ENRAGED hassigned to JCM Records....TRIVIUM has almost finished the recordings fortheir debut full-length album entitled Ember To Inferno which will bereleased on Lifeforce Records in October.
Producer Michael Voss is working on four completed songs in Germany whichare destined for the upcoming STATETROOPER CD. The backing tracks and vocalswere recorded in KD Studios Chiswick in West London. The recordings aredelayed whilst singer Gary Barden records Silver III with his other bandSILVER. STATETROOPER is seeking a worldwide release...Zoom Records is aboutto release the re-mastered and unreleased material from NWOBHM insider bandWEAPON this month...MERCYFUL FATE's Michael Denner and Hank Sherman appearon a release by the hard rock band JACK CRACKER Visit www.jackcracker.dk formore details....Canada's WARHAG are putting the finishes touches to a newCD. The full-length will feature songs like Silence of Winter (aninstrumental), Castle Reprise (a choral reprise of Into The Castle with thechorus featuring grand piano and choir), Sons of Thunder and U.M.A. Theband's previous is also being remixed and extra parts added are added toInto The Castle and Mean Mouth...MELLIAH RAGE's Unfinished Business whichfeatures GODSMACK's Sully Erna is now out through Screaming FerretWreckords. The previously unreleased album is comprised of a series of demosdating back to 1992. In the meanwhile, original members guitarist AnthonyNichols, guitarist Jim Koury, bassist Jesse Johnson, as well as newcomersPaul Souza on vocals and drummer Barry Spillberg (formerly of WARGASM) arewriting songs for a new album due at the end of the year...VELVET REVOLVER,the new band of STONE TEMPLE PILOTS singer Scott Weiland and former GUNS N'ROSES crew of Slash, Duff McKagan and Matt Sorum, recently had its livedebut in California. The band can be heard on the Hulk soundtrack...MADMARGRITT will perform at this year's Atlantis Music Conference. The bandwill perform on August 1, at Atlanta, Georgia's Club Riviera...Los Angeleshard Rock/industrial band CARBON 9 has announced the addition of former CUTTHROAT guitarist Darwin DeVitis to its line-up. The band is writing for asecond release...Los Angeles based FIREBALL MINISTRY has signed a contractwith Nuclear Blast Records. The band has two prior releases under its belt,namely Oui Est La Rock? on Bongload Records and FMEP on Small Stone Records.Their Nuclear Blast debut album, The Second Great Awakening, is due at theend of the summer...To support its Grand Amputation CD, TRANSPORT LEAGUE hasshot a video for the song Disconnect Massconnect...Hammerheart Records hassigned ARTHEMESIA from Finland. The band, which is described by Haammerhartas "black metal and death/thrash/heavy metal with a touch of Classical anddark ambient music," is recording its album ShamaNatahS - II Describe I Mindfor an autumn release...Arise Records has signed DREAMAKER. The band wasformed when three former members of DARK MOOR (vocalist Elisa C. Martin,guitarist Albert Maroto drummer Jorge Saez) left that band. The act's firstalbum will be recorded at Finland's Sonic Pump Studios in inSeptember...Crash Music has signed original VIRGIN STEELE guitarist JackStarr's new band for North America. THE GUARDIAN'S OF THE FLAMES' firstalbum, entitled Under A Savage Sky, will be out in September...Hardrock/metal act SEVENTRAIN featuring guitarist Eric Horton (formerly of theSan Diego, CA power metal band CAGE) has just launched a new website atwww.seventrain.com. The band's debut album is due in the autumn...The newfull-length release from LAW OF THE PLAGUE entitled The War Inside will bereleased independently on June 28th...Sound Riot Records is re-releasing thealbum Fairytales Of Darkness by Austrian band MADOG this month. The albumwas originally issued independently by the band last year...GOD FORBID willenter Trax East Studios in July with producer Eric Rachel (ATREYU, NORA,etc.) to record a new full-length album. The album will be produced by ColinRichardson and appear in early 2004...BIOMECHANICAL's debut album will bereleased by Revolver Records (UK) on September 1. The band is alsoparticipating in the Bloodstock Festival in August...Seattle's VANDERHOOFhas releases A Blur In Time Through SPV Records...Here is some news fromSanctuary Records: SEVEN WITCHES' Passage To The Other Side is now out.KISS'' Kiss Symphony: Alive IV is out now. The album billed as the band'sfinale features a 60-piece orchestra. Coming this month is A Lethal Dose OfAmerican Hatred by SUPERJOINT RITUAL...Portugal's FORGOTTEN SUNS is atstudio Avillez recording a second album. The album will be released by theband's own Mantis Records...Joe Comeau has left ANNIHILATOR. Comeau had thisto say: "...basically there was a non-musical difference which I thought wassomething we both could work out to a mutual understanding, however it didnot turn out that way. ANNIHILATOR is and always will be Jeff Waters. It washis decision, and his decision alone that he made to end our musicalcollaboration." Comeau is already working on a new project...Aside fromheadlining the second stage at this year's American run of Ozz Fest, CRADLEOF FILTH will be playing a number of shows on its own in both the USA andCanada during July and August...Brazil's ETERNAL SORROW has a new album onDemise Records called Legacy...KINGCROW will enter Legend Studios in Rome onSeptember 13th to record its second album. It is tentatively entitledInsider. It will be a concept album and feature songs like Eyes Of ABetrayer and Never Say Die...Century Media has established a new imprintdescribed as "We don¹t believe in keeping it real. Instead, we want the sexand the drugs, the flash and the attitude, the cockiness and the rebellion,the sweat and the fun that we believe has been sorely lacking in mainstreamrock in recent years." Liquor and Poker Music's first signing is Nebulawhose third album Atomic Ritual is due in September....Century Media hasdropped ONWARD on the eve of the recording of the band's third album. Theband has halted most activity for the moment, but fans can purchase a CDversion of the rough demos for the said album (The NeverEnding Sun) onONWARD's website. Singer Michael Grant is busying himself with a new projectcalled CRESCENT SHIELD...HOLOCAUST has released the long-promised Primalalbum...Here is some news from Seamiew Records: the label has signedTransport League. Expect the Swedes' fourth album Multiple Organ Harves inOctober. CDs by DREADLOCK PUSSY and RAPID NOTION can also be expected thisNovember...The new BRONZ CD is now out through Sanctuary Records in Europe.The label will also issue the CD in the USA next month...Spitfire Recordshas issued a new BRITNY FOX CD called Springhead Motorshark.The CD isproduced by Tommy Paris and Michael Kelly Smith. Britny Fox 2003 is TommyPari lead vocals, guitar, keyboards, Michael Kelly Smith on lead and rhythmguitar, Billy Childs on bass, backing vocals and Johnny Dee on drums...Hereis some news from Voliac Rock Records of Spain: the label has released VOICEOF HATE's (formerly DEATHPUSHER) Gods Of Hell And Earth MCD, NEMESISAETERNA'sAnd The Trip Begins EP and REDOX's Sharpened Knives MCD. Thelatter band has a full-length coming soon...The charitable GREAT WHITE tourof North America in support of the band's legal fund has been cancelledbecause the band was unable to obtain insurance. The band will instead doone-off shows and festivals...Germany's DARKSEED have replaced singer StefanHertrich with Christoph Puhr-Westerheide formerly of MISLEAD...Former DOKKENand current LYNCH MOB/LP guitarist George Lynch has a new project on the go.MICRODUST also features SNAKE RIVER CONSPIRACY's singer JasonSlater...Abacus Recordings has signed North Carolina's GLASS CASKET. AbacusRecordings debut, We Are Gathered Here Today, is expected later thisyear...FALCON, is a heavy rock band featuring singer and guitarist PerryGrayson (formerly of DESTINY¹S END) and bassist and keyboardist GregLindstrom (CIRITH UNGOL). The band has a demo available...CHILDREN OF BODOMhas signed to Century Media for North America...AMORPHIS' new album Far FromThe Sun, which has been released by Virgin Europe, has already hit theTOP-10 of the Finnish charts...BRAZEN ABBOT has just released an albumcalled Guilty As Sin...Former NEUROTICA and ATHEIST singer Kelly Shaefer isrecording a demo for his new project, STARRFACTORY. The new band follows thedissolution of NEUROTICA following a falling out between said band and theWWE's record company arm...KING DIAMOND and ENTOMBED will tour North Americain November...Vancouver's TENET is a new band featuring STRAPPING YOUNG LADguitarist Jed Simon, STRAPPING YOUNG LAD drummer Gene Hoglan,ex-FORBIDDEN/TESTAMENT guitarist Glen Alvelais, ex-GRIP INC. bassist StuartCarruthers, and former SACRIFICE/INTERZONE front man Rob Urbinati. The bandis recording an album called Sovereign which will appear early next year onCentury Media...BLACK 'N BLUE - including current KISS guitarist TommyThayer - has reformed ostensibly for only one show...BLIND GUARDIAN's newLive album has cracked the German Top-40 charts.
WOODS OF YPRES AGAINST THE SEASONS - COLD WINTER SONGS FROM THE SUMMER HEAT
A rarity out of Windsor, Canada Woods of Ypres is basically a trio. Their name refers to a WWI battle and a large trees at its memorial. The band consists of Aaron Palmer (bass and clean vocals) and David Gold (drums) joined by Brian McManus (guitars and black vocals). Against the Seasons is a five track demo running over 30 minutes. The tracks on this demo have been heard elsewhere on many occasions, their 'first' attempt at songwriting features the usual black metal fare, the flowing riffs, the Immortal like vocals, Opeth-like passages and Enslaved influences. The band claims to have written and recorded these cold and dark songs in the middle of a summer heat wave, whether or not that is of any relevance the listener can decide. Worth checking out if for no reason other than they don't originate from a country you might expect. Contact the band c/o David Gold, 359 Ouellette Ave. Windsor, Ontario, Canada N9A 4J1. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org or visit www.woodsofypres.ca. - Sheila Wes Det
METAL MILITIA - PERPETUAL STATE OF AGGRESSION
Metal Militia - difficult to imagine why the name was not taken earlier - hails from Florida where the band thrashes away like it's 1996. The band's primary influence is Overkill, but one does not have to listen too closely to hear the influence of albums like Master Of Puppets, Bonded By Blood, Forward To Termination or assorted work by Slayer on this full-length and professional CD. Here is the kicker: the band is comprised of a number of young musicians with ages in or around the 18 to 19 range. Imagine that, a bunch of youngsters valuing thrash metal, guitar solos, riffs and speedy rhythms. Can it be? Well, Metal Militia is out to prove that it can be done and that it can be done well. If one thing had to change, that would be the click of the bass drums. The sound is quite abysmal in that department.
The material here is hardly original. Rather, the band's true and puristic thrash metal assault makes for a refreshing journey through the best of the genre. Please either write the band at email@example.com or visit www.metalmilitia.cc for more information. - Ali "The Metallian"
MISERY INC. - SUICIDE SERENADE
Misery Inc. is not an overtly complex band. The band has a hard rock sound a la Sentenced et al and leans towards the depressive. The professionally-recorded and packaged demo-CD has a catchy title track with the remaining songs following closely. Listen closely for a Helloween bridge solo on the song Follow. The sound is very good, with the bass in particular enjoying an above average presence. This band is the new band of former Profane Omen's guitarist Janne Tolonen. It is logical for Misery Inc. to garner a recording contract sooner rather than later. Visit the band at www.miseryinc.cjb.net or write to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. - Ali "The Metallian"
OLD NICK - RECLUSIVE HYMNS
What Old Nick has assembled on one CD is a collage of samples, music and otherwise, which forms a noisy industrial output. The cover, song names and much of the samples indicate a political message, but lyrics are not provided and consequently the fact can't be ascertained. The message is definitely anti-Christian though. The inverted cross leaves no doubt in that regard. It is not clear whether noise-collages like Bludgeon and Mass Grave are of interest to metal fans. As such, industrial noise project enthusiasts would probably be a safer group to recommend this to. Please contact the band via e-mail at email@example.com or write to PO Box 204, Providence Forge, VA. 23140 USA. - Ali "The Metallian"
RAVAGE - CURSE OF HEAVEN
I wish I had the proper demo of this new band because Ravage's biography states that the cover is a professionally-illustrated metal artwork. Perhaps that would give this sweet girl something to criticize. The 'pre-release' demo is very cool otherwise. It make me shiver with heavy metal delight listening to this brazen display of pure, molten, glorious heavy metal. The band was formed in 1995 by the Firicano brothers. Yet, due to a heavenly cursed has not released official music until now. The wait has been worth it though. Take the voice of Bruce Dickinson, the feeling of Warlord and Lizzy Borden and prepare to be ravaged. The singer certainly has some character behind his voice. They have the power, the hooks, the solos and I wonder if they have the long hair to go with it too!! Visit www.665.org/ravage and find out. I know that's where I am going. (OK, I am back. I cheated. Their site is not accessible because I use the wrong browser!) All hail heavy metal! Alternatively e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. - Sheila Wes Det
FORCES@WORK - COLDHEART CANYON
This German quintet play a style that is neither too heavy nor too soft, ex-Lost Century vocalist Andreas Lohse's voice ranges from the clean and melodic to one that is angrier. Their music can be described in the same manner, songs like Dead Will Dance and A Nice Day to Hate feature passages that are almost Jazzy. At times one is reminded of songs that Sanctuary, Dream Theatre or Candlemass could have written. Acoustic, instrumental passages that are clearly non-Metal can be heard throughout parts of this six song demo. The songs also Feature long instrumental parts, perhaps not too surprising considering the fact the vocalist was recruited after the other four guys played as an instrumental unit. The last song, Pre-mortem Autopsy, takes a turn to the heavier as the title would suggest with some fast riffing and not so clean vocals. Still one is left wondering if there is any room for a band that seems to lack a clear direction, however a new release is planned for the end of 2003 which may help define the band more clearly. Reach the band by contacting Adrian Weiss, Erkratherstr. 314, 40231, Dusseldorf, Germany or Adrian @forcesatwork.de or through www.forcesatwork.de. - Sheila Wes Det
RISING MOON - DEMO 2003
An Italian trio, formed in 1996, this four song release is meant as a showcase of their sound for labels. Their self-proclaimed love of Swedish death metal is apparent through Death's Colors, They Are As Us, Grind Out and Almost Insignificant, in both the slower and faster aspects. The latter being the title of an album they expect to release by the end of the year. Good sound courtesy of Outer Sound Studios in Rome captures the aforementioned Swedish sound well. As in Canada's Woods of Ypres it is good to hear a sound that is not necessarily 'native' to a country executed proficiently by a band. D'Annibale Carmine, Via Macinini, 66020 Villa Caldari Di Ortona (CH), Italy email@example.com www.risingmoon.it. - Sheila Wes Det
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