Metallian Heavy

BENIGHTED will release a new album, Asylum Cave, on March 21st in Europe and March 29th in North America through Season Of Mist.

Texas’ BLASPHERIAN has an album called Infernal Warriors Of Death which is slated for a March 8th release through Deathgasm Records.

PARTY.SAN 2011 will run from August 11 – 13, 2011 at Flugplatz Obermehler in Schlotheim, Germany. Several bands included this year are DEW-SCENTED, ABSU, PUTERAEON, ABORTED, WITCHBURNER, SKELETONWITCH, DECAPITATED, DARKENED NOCTURN SLAUGHTERCULT and URGEHAL.

Extreme pride: Basick Records is “extremely pleased” and is re-signing THE ARUSHA ACCORD! The deal will see the worldwide re-release of the band’s debut album The Echo Verse’ as a 2-disc digipack on April 18th 2011, which will be bundled with the bands original debut Nightmares Of The Ocean EP.

ULCER, which recently joined Pulverised Records’ roster, is unveiling Grant Us Death. Recorded, mixed and mastered by Grzegorz Kulawiak at Sinquest Sound Studio in Lublin, Poland.

PANZERCHRIST has re-signed to Listenable Records and is unleashing its new album, entitled Regiment Ragnarok, on April 18th, 2011.

AMON AMARTH has announced a 2011 U.S. headlining tour. Simply dubbed An Evening With AMON AMARTH, this trek will find the band touring without support and instead performing two separate sets each night. One set will feature the upcoming album Surtur Rising in its entirety. The tour starts mid-April.

Mortal Music will release No Closure from Chicago’s WITHERING SOUL on March 8th. MVD Entertainment Group will handle distribution. The deal will see a worldwide re-release of the band’s debut album The Echo Verses as a 2-disc digipack collector’s edition on April 18th 2011, which will be bundled with the bands original debut Nightmares Of The Ocean.

Turkey’s black metal band RAVENWOODS’ Enfeebling The Throne is out now through code666.

Czech grindcore band MINCING FURY AND GUTTURAL CLAMOUR OF QUEER DECAY released its third full-length album, Devolution, late last year through United Guttural.

Grim Scary Tales, the new full-length from Chicago’s MACABRE, is out through its own Decomposed Records imprint, with distribution in North America through Willowtip Records.

CIPHER SYSTEM is recording its sophomore album, Communicate The Storms. The mixing will once again be handled by Fredrik Nordström at Studio Fredman in Gothenburg in April. The band is seeking a new label.

MASTER has announced a 2011 U.S. headlining tour. The tour will commence on March 1st in Fredrick, Maryland and run through over a month’s worth of dates before coming to a close on April 3rd in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The band will be joined by Los Angeles’ LIGHTNING SWORD OF DEATH and Ohio thrashers MOBILE DEATH CAMP.

EYEHATEGOD will release an official live DVD on March 22nd through MVD. Simply titled Live, the 88-minute production features multi-camera footage from 2009 (Baltimore, MD) and 2010 (Cleveland, OH), with bonus clips from the last show of the band’s 2010 European tour.

KRALLICE has completed work on its third full-length album, Diotima. It will be released on April 26th through Profound Lore.

The Norwegian band ZEROZONIC has just set the release date for its album, God Damn, Better, Best for March 11, 2011. The band will release it through Mayhem Music, the record label from Audun Grønnestad of IMPERIA. The band features Daniel “Peisy” Olaisen of BLOOD RED THRONE.

Bay Area thrashers HEATHEN will be replacing DESTRÖYER 666 on the upcoming North American Reckoning tour headlined by DESTRUCTION. DESTRÖYER 666 has had to cancel the tour due to an “unavoidable personal commitment.”

Another tale of loyalty: Gary Holt of EXODUS will be temporarily filling in for guitarist Jeff Hanneman during SLAYER’s upcoming tour dates following the Slayer guitarist’s illness. Holt joined SLAYER members Kerry King, Tom Araya and Dave Lombardo on the five-date Australian Soundwave Festival that began February 26. SLAYER guitarist Jeff Hanneman is currently recuperating at home after emergency surgery on his right arm after contracting a serious infection, possibly caused by a spider bite.

KATAKLYSM is issuing a 20th anniversary DVD. Titled The Iron Will: 20 Years Determined, this documentary will begin with the band’s inception in 1991. Director and producer Tommy Jones (LAMB OF GOD, SOILWORK and DEATH ANGEL) is expecting the release date to be spring of 2011. The DVD will also include interviews with a wide range of characters including the band’s first frontman Sylvain Houde, who sang on the first three KATAKLYSM albums: The Mystical Gate Of Reincarnation (1993), Sorcery (1996) and Temple Of Knowledge (1999).

FERAL is releasing Dragged To The Altar through Ibex Moon on April 26th.

Agonia Records has issued FORGOTTEN TOMB’s Under Saturn Retrograde, AOSOTH’s III and SPEARHEAD’s Theomachia. The last band hails from the UK.

DEVASTATOR has changed its name to BLESSED CURSE. The band has recruited Clark Webb as rhythm guitarist. The band has signed to Cyclone Empire for Europe and is recording an album.

Metallian Hard

HELL, who on May 13th in Europe will release its first studio album Human Remains, has signed to Nuclear Blast Records. The album’s North American release date will be announced soon. The band was initially formed in 1982. The music is re-recorded ‘80s material with long-time fan Andy Sneap producing.

Los Angeles’ HOLY GRAIL will be teaming up with Canadian band CAULDRON for a North American tour from April 15th through May 12th. HOLY GRAIL will close all U.S shows while CAULDRON will close all Canadian dates.

CONQUEST OF STEEL will release its Victorious In Defeat 7" single on the 7th of March 2011 through No Face Records.

ROYAL HUNT and its former lead singer DC Cooper have decided to reunite - for a few dates – in order to perform the entire Paradox” (the band’s first concept album from 1997) and several other songs from that period.

VOIVOD has announced April 5th as the release date for a live album being issued by Indica Records. Titled Warriors Of Ice, the album was recorded on December 12th, 2009 at the band's first headlining show in at Club Soda in Montréal in ten years.

$ talks! After several years of slagging each other and MÖTLEY CRÜE vowing the rumours are just that POISON and MÖTLEY CRÜE are touring together for the first time as co-headliners with guests the NEW YORK DOLLS. The tour is scheduled for the summer of 2011 and considered a win for promoters.

Former BLACK SABBATH singer Tony Martin, KING DIAMOND guitarist Andy LaRocque, ex-HAMMERFALL bassist Magnus Rosén and VENOM drummer Danny Needham have formed an unnamed project. The band is currently writing material at LaRocque's Sonic Train Studios in Varberg, Sweden.

Los Angeles metal band, RUSTY EYE has released Live At The Rainbow MMX, a collection of songs performed live at the Rainbow Bar & Grill in April of 2010. This was an unprecedented event, as RUSTY EYE became the first band in The Rainbow's 38-year history to record in the Hollywood bar.

DEEP PURPLE bassist ROGER GLOVER's new solo album is due for a June release. The album is titled If Life Was Easy.

SYMFONIA is a new melodic metal project featuring guitarist Timo Tolkki (ex-STRATOVARIUS), vocalist Andre Matos (ex-ANGRA), drummer Uli Kusch (ex-HELLOWEEN), bassist Jari Kainulainen (ex-STRATOVARIUS) and keyboardist Mikko Harkin (ex-SONATA ARTICA) releasing its debut full-length. Titled In Paradisum, the ten-track offering was recorded mainly in Finland, mixed and mastered in Italy and produced by Timo Tolkki. The record will be released in North America through Armoury Records on April 19, 2011.

MR. BIG is back with a new studio album entitled « What If… » . It is out now on Frontiers Records. «What If… » is MR. BIG’s first album with new material since the reunion of the four original members, Eric Martin, Paul Gilbert, Billy Sheehan and Pat Torpey back in early 2009.

2011 has brought France’s MYSTERY BLUE Matt Gabnai on bass.

Extreme delight: My Kingdom Music is “absolutely delighted” to announce the signing of Italian metal band CROWN OF AUTUMN. An album called Splendours From The Dark is out on May 6th.

American band SACRED DAWN is releasing a full-length entitled A Madness Within? which is scheduled for March 22nd, 2011.

NO GRAVITY is a new progressive power metal outfit and the brainchild of renowned guitarist Simone Fiorletta. The band’s debut release Worlds In Collision sees release on Lion Music on 18th March 2011. The band was formed in early 2010 from the ashes of Italian progressive metallers MOONLIGHT COMEDY.

DIMMU BORGIR will be performing a special, “never-to-be-repeated” set list with 53 members of KORK (the Norwegian Radio Orchestra) and 30 members of the Schola Cantorum Choir, who were musical guests on the band’s ninth studio album, Abrahadabra. For fans of the band’s music Saturday, May 28, 2011 at the Oslo Spektrum in Norway promises to be a treat as this is the band’s only confirmed worldwide appearance throughout the summer.

Finnish dark metal band BEFORE THE DAWN has a new album, Deathstar Rising, through Nuclear Blast.

WEAPON is playing 3 “low-key” shows with old and brand new material and has a week-long tour planned with OLIVER SAWSON SAXON in September 2011.

The delusion continues. The record labels are blaming downloading for record low sales. In related news, brains are blaming record labels for being dinosaurs.

Metallian Demos

That Nova Orbis hails from Colombia is a surprise. The band’ sound and adopted style had this reviewer thinking Italy, perhaps Romania or Iberia. This band, you see, is yet another clone… of the worst kind.
Nova Orbis is the type of band that sent labels like Arise and Sound Riot into bankruptcy. Wading through run-of-the-mill second rate Dream Theater clone sounds Nova Orbis throws every terrible cliché at the listener inclusive of weak vocals with aspirations of Arias, keyboards, meaningless jabs at ‘synth’, male/female singing intertwined and alternated and a guitar sound that is as present as honour, love and wisdom in the US Army. Indeed, were one to rank the priorities of the mix they would be in order: vocals, keyboards, drums, hiss and bass/guitars. The biography calls the production “fresh sound” and definitively sticks a knife forever in the belly of all press releases and official biographies. Is this what passes as metal nowadays? Well, not in any sane lands.
By the time a song like The Lamp rolls along and Nova Orbis launches into the obligatory pseudo-opera imitation barely a listener is still standing to hear the mess. The sacrifices a reviewer has to make.
Once upon a time Colombia was the land of death, black and power metal. Let us hope Nova Orbis is an anomaly. The band can be found at or visit the corporate web destination of - Ali “The Metallian”

Here is a new name to these years and an Irish one at that. The trio of Pauric Gallagher (singer and guitar), Kevin McCloskey (bass) and drummer Gary Byrne has been together for over five years and issued a couple of demos with Recurring Times Of grief being its latest.
The band is squarely in the doom/death metal category of things and upon first few listens took me back to the old stalwart of the genre, Sorrow. The enjoyment/suffering factor increases with every subsequent listen and the listener discovers more and more riffs and nuances with repeat listens. Interestingly, despite the presence of a mere three songs (and a useless intro), the demo lasts as much as a full album owing to the extra-long tracks. The songs meld epic doom with funeral of the same and introduce rather well-done clean vocals, which is a rarity always, in The Sacred Heart Is Bleeding. Most vocals are of the more powerful and deeper variety. The best riffs, however, are kept until the ending of the last song, Weeping willows, where the guitars really come together. In contrast, the drums are muted and uninventive. All in all though, this one is above average interesting and really recommended for genre enthusiasts so either e-mail or and visit - Anna Tergel