Category Archives: metal

DVD: Blue Cheer Rocks Europe

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Label: Rainman Records Released: June 26, 2009 There’s a handful of bands out there whose influence has been felt far and wide decades after they made their mark, yet they never enjoyed significant commercial success. The Velvet Underground comes to mind. So does Nick Drake. There are others, but in heavy rock circles, one of these bands rises above all… Read more »

Review: Admiral Browning – Magic Elixir

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Label: Dancing Sasquatch Records Released: April 2009 So much stoner and doom rock tends to be an exercise in heaviness alone. While that certainly has its place, few people can take the steady bludgeoning that it offers even as it fills that need in all who really love heavy metal for the mind-numbing weight of slow, trudging riffs that take… Read more »

Review: Anvil! The Story of Anvil

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Before this film had even been released, the comparisons to Spinal Tap were coming from all quarters, including, it seems, the film’s creators and promoters. There’s good reason too, because the parallels between the two films are uncanny, especially considering that one is parody and the other reality. While director Sacha Gervasi surely emphasized the similarities in the two stories… Read more »

Review: Exciter

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Label: Magnetic Air Released: January 20, 2009 I didn’t pay close attention to Exciter back in the 80s, but looking back, I’ve wondered why they weren’t considered at least in that second tier of speedmetal bands with the likes of Overkill, Testament, etc. They were early adopters of that happy marriage between speed and heaviness…and yet they’re so often forgotten…. Read more »

Review: Sepultura – A-Lex

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Label: Steamhammer/SPV Released: January 27, 2009 There’s a fine line between grand and grandiose. Most concept albums are so much the latter that they never even get close to the line. Sepultura, veterans of the concept album, aren’t close to that line either, but they’re on the good side. Their new album, A-Lex, is based on Anthony Burgess’ novel A… Read more »

Review: Mighty High – In Drug City

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Label: self-released (available at amazon, CD Baby and Interpunk) Released: March 11, 2008 My copy of In Drug City came with an interesting promo item – a combination lighter/bottle opener emblazoned with the Mighty High logo. There was a note from guitarist Woody High saying, “I know you’re straightedge, but the bottle opener works for soda and the lighter for… Read more »

Review: Clutch – Full Fathom Five (Audio Field Recordings 2007-2008)

Label: Weathermaker Music (distributed by MVD) Released: September 15, 2008 As a studio band, Clutch has released several of my all-time favorite albums, but those came out a decade or more ago. As a live band, Clutch has never satisfied me. Their dynamic heavy groove that sets them apart from the field of Sabbath and space rock devotees that have… Read more »

Review: Grayceon – This Grand Show

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Label: Vendlus Records Released: November 11, 2008 Symphonic metal seemed like a good idea, but every time someone gives it a try, we either get Metallica’s S&M, where classical is merely superimposed onto metal, or Dragonforce, where we get all the soul (or lack thereof rather) of classical dummied down for the average rock fan. It should work, but it… Read more »

Strike First Presents: Earth from Above

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Strike First Records is pleased to announce the signing of Southern California’s Earth From Above. These guys have been tearing up SoCal for a while now and will be recording their debut full length in January with engineer Chris Eck (Impending Doom, Mirrors of Dead Faces, Oblige) for a spring 09 release. You can hear The Antidote, a brand new… Read more »