Metallian Heavy

SEANCE (death metal’s answer to GUNS ‘N ROSES) has signed a deal with Pulverised Records. The group’s next album, Awakening Of The Gods (death metal’s answer to Chinese Democracy) is now due in January.

SUFFOCATION has signed with Nuclear Blast. Expect Blood Oath in January.

WARGASM DVD Knee Deep In The Middle East Live 2004 Reunion is now available through the band’s website www.wargasm.org.

ZONARIA will release its new album, The Cancer Empire, on October 17th through Century Media Records. It was produced by Fredrik Nordström.

DIABOLICAL
has signed a three-album deal with ViciSolum Productions. The group’s new album, The Gallery Of Bleeding Art, is out next month and follows its predecessor by six years.

GUILLOTINE’s second album, Blood Money, is due in November through Pulverised Records. The cover artwork is illustrated by Ed Repka who has previously worked with HEXEN, MASSACRE and DEATH.

AVULSED has just completed several festival appearances in Europe, namely the Death Feast, Metal Mania and FilthRock. The band has just announced the title for its 2009 album as Nullo (The Pleasure Of Self-Mutilation). The band is still signed with Metal Age Productions.

PUTREVORE’s Morphed From Deadbreath is out now. The band features Dave Rotten (AVULSED) and Rogga (PAGANIZER).

DARKEST HOUR has parted ways with guitarist Kris Norris. The man who toured with the DC crossover fiends, Mike “Lonestar” Carrigan, now has the job full-time.

SIX FEET UNDER has announced Death Rituals as the title for its new album, which is out on November 11th through Metal Blade Records.

THE RED CHORD has kicked guitarist Mike Keller out of the band following growing personal and musical differences.

Finland’s SKEPTICISM will release its fourth full-length album, named Alloy, on October 20th through Red Stream.

LENG TCH’E, KRISIUN and PAROXYSM have banded together for a tour of Canada in late October and November.

Norway’s EINHERJER will reunite for a single appearance at the Ragnarök VI Festival, which is scheduled for April 17-18, 2009 in Germany.

Drummer Chris Dudek (a.k.a. Witchhunter) formerly of SODOM died on September 7th. Witchhunter was the band’s drummer until 1992’s Tapping The Vein album.

Drummer Paul Bostaph (currently with TESTAMENT) appeared on stage with his original band FORBIDDEN on September 12th at Slim’s in San Francisco. Bostaph is still with TESTMAENT and appeared with FORBIDDEN as a one-off reunion.

BLOODBATH’s The Fathomless Mastery is out this month through Peaceville Records. OPETH’s Mikael Åkerfeldt is on vocals.

Black metal band HORNA
will release its seventh album, Sanojesi Äärelle, on September 29th through Debemur Morti Productions.

DARK FUNERAL
will release Attera Orbis Terrarum – Part II, the second DVD recorded during the band’s tour in support of the Attera Totus Sanctus album, this month.

Salem Rose Music Publishing has taken over the management of REVENANCE. The band was formed in 2003 and released an album, called Omen of Tragedy, on Permeated Records in 2006. Salem Rose will be shopping a new demo soon in order to secure a new deal for the band.

Dutch band CIRITH GORGOR has signed with Dutch company Displeased Records. Expect a new full-length in 2009.

Southern Lord Records will issue SUNN 0))) – Dømkirke double-LP next month.

ALL SHALL PERISH recently embarked on a 10-day tour of Russia which included four shows in Siberia. ALL SHALL PERISH claims to have made history by becoming the first American metal band to play shows in Siberia which included the cities of Irkutsch, Novosibirsk, Tomsk, and Omsk.

Canada’s SHADES OF DUSK has signed to Prodisk for the release of the band’s second album entitled Quiescence, which is hitting the stores on November 25th 2008 through Fusion3.

BONE GNAWER, the project of Rogga Johansson of DEMIURG/RIBSPREADER/etc. man and Kam Lee of DENIAL FIEND/MASSACRE, has signed a deal with Pulverised Records. The band is working on a full-length album. Work is ongoing at Erik Rutan’s Mana Studio in St. Petersburg.

Former NIGHTRAGE and current DESCENDING guitarist Constantine has joined the German power metal band MYSTIC PROPHECY
.

DEICIDE has picked up Kevin Quirion from ORDER OF ENNEAD (which features two DEICIDE members) as a touring guitarist.

NECRODEATH has made guitarist Pier Gonella a permanent member. Simultaneously, bassist John has left NECRODEATH for the standard “personal reasons.”

Mighty Music will issue Funeral Phantoms, EXMORTEM’s fifth album, at the end of this month.

THE RED DEATH has thrown in the towel and the members will concentrate on bands like DEVIL HIS DUE.

BLASPHEMIC CRUELTY is the name of the new band of ANGELCORPSE
guitarist Gene Palubicki. The album Devil’s Mayhem is out next month through ANGELCORPSE label Osmose Productions.

ARKAEA, the band of FEAR FACTORY
’s Christian Olde Wolbers and Raymond Herrera, as well as singer Jon Howard (THREAT SIGNAL) will release its debut album on March 10th, 2009 through Koch Records.

CHILDREN OF BODOM
’s singer and guitarist Alexi Laiho and bassist Henkka Seppälä of CHILDREN OF BODOM have a clothing line now called Wildchild Industries.

RESURRECTION bassist Scott Patrick has quit the band in order to dedicate himself to ORDER OF ENNEAD. He also claims to be better off not being in RESURRECTION. The band was apparently not informed of his departure.
The band’s Mistaken For Dead is out next month through Massacre Records.

Candlelight Records has signed the reunited bay Area thrashers DEFIANCE. The band is due to release a new album in May.

Singer John Tardy and drummer Donald Tardy of OBITUARY have formed a project called THE TARDY BROTHERS. The band is completing a demo called Bloodline.

KONKHRA has signed with Denmark’s Target Distribution for the release of its sixth album, Nothing Is Sacred. The album deals in large part with the recent controversy surrounding the publishing of images of Islam’s prophet Muhammad by Danish newspapers.

DARKSIDE has lost drummer Lukas Siska right before a series of shows. The band is assessing its future.

AT THE GATES is busy putting together a video documentary of the band including its recent tour with THE HAUNTED, DISFEAR and others.

Vancouver’s TERROR SYNDROME, featuring THE DEVIN TOWNSEND BAND drummer Ryan Van Poederooyen, has said goodbye to singer Denton Bramley and replaced him with ANNIHILATOR’s Dave Padden. The new singer will front both bands.

BEHEMOTH will release an EP, called Ezkaton, next month through Metal Blade Records. The EP will feature seven tracks including old, new and live songs.

DIES IRAE, featuring former VADER members, will release a DVD+CD called The Art Of An Endless Creation on October 27th through Metal Mind Productions.

ZERO HOUR has had to cancel its upcoming performance at ProgPower Scandinavia in Denmark. Troy Tiptun has been struggling with Tendonitis for many years and in the last year the pain in his Ulnar nerve and tendons has pushed him to mandatory surgery. Troy has already run up a large amount of medical bills this year.

SISTER SIN, LEAVES’ EYES and MERCENARY are opening for ARCH ENEMY at the latter band’s December Tyranny Tour 2008. ARCH ENEMY’s Tyrants Of The Rising Sun: Live In Japan CD and DVD is due in November.

American band DREAMING DEAD has signed with Ibex Moon Records. The group’s first album will be called Within One and will be released in January.

GOJIRA’s The Way Of All Flesh is out this month through Listenable Records.

Salem Rose Music Publishing has signed AVENGER OF BLOOD. The Las Vegas-based band released Death Brigade earlier this year through Heavy Artillery Records. Since then the group has overhauled its line-up with the addition of bass player/vocalist Chris Rodriguez and guitarist Mike Videtto. The band has entered the studio with Salem Rose’s Marco Barbieri producing and Lance Swain engineering to record Hell Patrol. Marco Barbieri has also launched M-Theory Audio, a new label. The release of PAPSMEAR’s Music To Kill By, a band compilation, is the label’s foray.

MARTYR and former DESPISED ICON drummer Patrice Hamelin will join fellow Canadians QUO VADIS on tour and in studio for new material.

DIMMU BORGIR’s The Invaluable Darkness DVD, a three-disc package of 2 DVDs plus a bonus audio CD is scheduled for North American release on October 14, 2008. On September 10th there was a Question-&-Answer session with the band’s Silenoz launching the set.


Metallian Hard

THRESHOLD has reissued its 2003 acoustic CD Wireless - Acoustic Sessions, which is now available exclusively at the band's website www.thresh.net. The band is performing at the following festivals: Summer's End in England, ProgPower in Holland and Metal Inferno V in Switzerland.

KOCH RECORDS has signed YNGWIE MALMSTEEN via the guitarist’s Rising Force Records. The Perpetual Flame album is due this month and features former JUDAS PRIEST singer Ripper Owens.

DEEP PURPLE was joined on stage by its former keyboardist Jon Lord for five songs at Sunflower Jam 2008 on September 25th at the Porchester Halls in London, England. With singer Ian Gillan suffering from a cold, the band played several instrumental tracks. Also performing with the band for the songs Smoke On The Water, Lucille and even Black Night was IRON MAIDEN ’s Bruce Dickinson.

Sweden’s CRUCIFIED BARBARA will issue Til Death Do Us Party in January through GMR. Similarly delayed is the single Sex Action.

HARMONY will release its new album, Chapter II: Aftermath, next month through Nightmare Records.

Portugal’s IRONSWORD will release its third full-length, Overlords Of Chaos, this month through Shadow Kingdom Records.

ORANGE GOBLIN has signed with Candlelight Records.

Shrapnel Records will reissue the first two CHASTAIN CDs, namely Mystery Of Illusion and Ruler Of The Wasteland this month.

SHADOW KEEP , which now features singer Richie Wicks, has signed a deal with Melissa Records. The band’s The Hourglass Effect is due in the winter.

ELVENKING has announced Two Tragedy Poets (...And A Caravan Of Weird Figures) as the title for its new acoustic album, due on November 14th through AFM Records.

CRYSTAL EYES’ Chained album is due in December through Metal Heaven. The album was produced by Fredrik Nordström.

GREAT WHITE , DOKKEN , SWEET and ASIA will give a concert to raise funds for Rancho Bernardo United Coalition and to benefit "Promoting Healing Through Music" on October 24th at Qualcom Stadium in San Diego, California.

MÖTLEY CRÜE , which recently released Saints Of Los Angeles, and headlined the inaugural Crüe Fest tour this summer is set to re-issue their complete studio catalogue on September 30, 2008 on Mötley Records/Eleven Seven Music.

PARAGON will release its new album, entitled Screenslaves, on November 14th through Massacre Records. The CD was produced by Uwe Lullis who has worked with GRAVE DIGGER and others.

GARY MOORE ’s follow-up to 2007’s Close As You Get is out next month through Eagle Records. It is called Bad For You Baby.

CINDERELLA 's Jeff LaBar has replaced Carlos Cavazo on guitar in JUAN CROUCIER'S DIRTY RATS. The band features RATT’s Juan Croucier.

LOUDNESS has issued yet another DVD. It is a four-disc set called The Legend Of Loudness - Live Complete Best and features material from early days to today. It is available in Japan through Tokuma Communications.

Former BLIND GUARDIAN and SAVAGE CIRCUS drummer Thomas "Thomen" Stauch is touring with industrial band SEELENZORN.

Former HIMSA drummer Joe Frothingham has joined Seattle’s doom band WITCHBURN.

EDGUY has re-signed with Nuclear Blast for three albums. The band’s next album Tinnitus Sanctus is out next month.

ADAGIO has cancelled its opening slot of the French portion of FIREWIND 's tour for unexplained reasons. The band’s next album is called Archangels In Black which is expected in January, 2009.

Guitarist Peter Wichers has returned to SOILWORK three years after leaving. Daniel Antonsson has been let go.

BURNING POINT ’s fourth album, Empyre, is out in December through Metal Heaven. The album features new songs rerecordings and several cover versions.

After butting heads the members of SIEGES EVEN have decided to call it a day.

BEFORE THE DAWN will release its fifth album, Soundscape Of Silence, on October 29th through Stay Heavy Records.

MEKONG DELTA has recruited Singer Martin LeMar (TOMORROW'S EVE) and drummer Alex Landenburg (AT VANCE , BROKEN GRACE and ANNIHILATOR ).

AGATHODAIMON has picked up singer Chris 'Ashtrael' Bonner and is working on its Phoenix album.

SAMMY HAGAR will release a new album on Loud & Proud Records on November 18th. Cosmic Universal Fashion marks the first release for Loud & Proud, a Roadrunner Records imprint focusing on established artists. The label is headed by Tom Lipsky.

DIRTY LOOKS ’ California Free Ride is out this month through Perris Records.

ROYAL ANGUISH is back out of Florida with an album called The Grand Deception.


Metallian Demos

PINK STËËL – OUT AT THE DËVIL
When Pink Stëël’s manager/publicist first approached me regarding a review of the band’s demo-CD Out At The Dëvil - while the concept was intriguing – the band’s existence was more a matter of curiosity than speculation. San Francisco has an active gay community and it is not as if the city’s Bralalalala hadn’t previously made an attempt at a career with his sexuality at the fore.
Naturally, the humour was obvious from the start. With a band and demo name like this, song titles like Sausage party and We Fight For Cock one could easily foresee the absurdity. Now, having received the pink package, read through the band’s hilarious website where they open themselves to lawsuits left, right and behind and heard the actual damn thing many times the fact of the band’s seriousness is in serious doubt. Firstly, the band is funny as hell. This is the homosexual equivalent to Nanowar. From AC/DC to Mötley Crüe and from Hollywood to Megadeth everything and everyone is gayed up on this disc. The hard rockish songs jostle for space with a running theme regarding the placement of the ‘hidden track,’ while the two members converse and argue over everything homosexual. This is like a gay Bang Tango (to gay up that name should at least get me on the band’s website) mixed with a sleazier Bullet Boys (this takes me to the thanks list) and everything hard in between.
How seriously gay these guys are is a big question. Nonetheless, even if the trio is not a gay band from Bremen, Germany (which they aren’t given how the fake German accents fade when the band sings its songs) and just a couple of funsters from San Francisco this is worth hearing, listening and laughing along with. Gay men and gayer people can also laugh along to lyrics about Frodo (“These boots are made for Tolkien/All over you”) or parties with “no girls/just boys”. www.pinksteel.com or email press@pinksteel.com quickly because the CD was issued on Rob Halford’s birthday and is liable to sell out soon. – Ali “The Metallian”

KID BLUDO – UP & AWAY
That bands like this still pop up amazes me time after time. Bands like The Lizards feature several veteran musicians but newer bands like Kid Bludo are a bunch of unknowns who have basically decided upon the path of glory… with no glory! To be frank, this is hardly a heavy metal or a revolutionary act with so many slow songs, but the group sings both rock and hard rock tunes with authenticity. The down side is the fairly generic guitar riffs and rhythms that get completely buried under the more inventive vocals. Speaking of the singing the kid is half male, half female. Note Chuck Woodard’s voice, which is reminiscent of the Candlemass guy Johan Lanquist on Stand In Line and Show Me The Way. www.kidbludo.com is the place to visit or email info@kidbludo.com. - Anna Tergel

AGAINST THE PLAGUES – THE ARCHITECTURE OF OPPRESSION
What to do when you are a weak-minded fool with no awareness of art or yourself? Set up a so-called metal band and then douse it in keyboards.
No, Against The Plagues is not the stereotypical joker child out of Finland. The band features members from Forest Of Impaled, Luciferion and Malevolent Creation, is based out of Chicago and purports to cleanly played, professionally recorded and well-presented music and packaging. The problem is that Emperor sucked and so does Dimmu Borgir – unless one inhabits Planet Teenage Fad. Given its budget and profile Against The Plagues has to appeal to the metal scene and the underground and there is no room for poserisms there. In short The Architecture Of Oppression is a fantastic failure. To fail alongside the band which has more keyboards then Duran Duran yet hides the name of its keyboardist in the smallest font possible write to info@againsttheplagues.com. - Ali “The Metallian”

PAINTED BLACK – VERBO
Being Portuguese the first impressions are immediately reminiscent of Moonspell, but Painted Black are doomier and more melancholic. There are hints of My Dying Bride and Anathema here. Acoustic segments, clean vocals, pianos and violins appear at different times, all present with moments of heaviness and anger. Five songs running thirty one minutes are another indication of the mood of the songs as are the titles, The Desolate Pleading, Nightshift, Expire, The Sin Path and Your Heart In Ashes. The latter easily being the heaviest of the five. All in all Verbo is strictly for fans of or those who crave melancholy. Contact the band at www.paintedblack.no.sapo.pt. - Anna Tergel

DARK SHIFT - GAINING GROUND
This American quartet claim to play ‘high energy melodic metal’. Gaining Ground is their sophomore release and features 10 songs running 47 minutes. The opener and title track is almost mallcore-ish mostly ‘aided’ in that by the vocals of Lewie Snyder. Trial By Stone matches the aforementioned description more closely and incorporates mid-paced riffs and melodic guitars ala many a European band. K.M.S. is heavy metal mixed with a bit of the non-metal, with the vocals not helping much again. Sweet Poison starts and Dark Shift could be mistaken with many European melodic or even so-called folk metal bands but it soon drifts to relatively high energy heavy metal. Mark My Words has a speed and power metal feel. Settle The Score is rather ordinary and features backing screams ala ‘80’s thrash or hardcore. Shock And Awe is an instrumental that starts acoustically and continues on showcasing the guitar playing abilities of Lewie Snyder and Joel Wanasek. We Came To Rock’s riffs confirm its title. Know Your Enemy continues on the solid path with the guitars providing the energy. Eye Of Betrayal is perhaps thrashier and it provides more reminders that the weak point here is the vocals. Contact the band at www.darkshift.com. - Anna Tergel