Archive for March, 2011

Epica w/ ReVamp @ The Moho [Live Review]

Posted in Live with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 14th March 2011 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Bands: Epica, ReVamp
Location: The Moho, Manchester
Date: 13th March 2010

Anticipation hung in the air as the crowd eagerly awaited the start of the gig after a long wait for the doors to open. The venue was silent until the sounds of an orchestra boomed through the speakers mixed with the sounds of the drums. At that moment the crowd went wild. Most of ReVamp soon made their entrance onto the stage and began playing “Here’s My Hell”, which was soon followed by Floor’s strong vocals. Floor proved herself to be brilliant show-woman, encouraging louder and louder cheers from the crowd. “Fast Forward”, “Disdain” and “Head Up High” were the best performed songs of the night by ReVamp.

After a half-hour interval, it was Epica’s turn to take the stage.  “Samadhi” began booming out of the speakers as Epica began to make their way to stage. They soon began blasting their way through “Resign to Surrender” and “Sensorium”. The crowd reacted excitedly when the band began playing “Fools of Damnation” and their tribute to Star Wars in the form of “The Imperial March”. Time seemed to fly by extremely fast as Epica made their way through the setlist. At the end, the crowd began shouting for more from Epica, so they happily obliged, finishing off with “Sancta Terra” and “The Phantom Agony”. The highlight of the encore however was when Floor came up and sang “Sancta Terra” with Epica.

All in all, it was a brilliant and energetic gig which got the blood pumping. Anyone who hasn’t seen either Epica or ReVamp, you want to see them as soon as possible, it will be one of the best gigs you’ll ever go to.

Nico Davidson

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Weak of Wanting [Band Review]

Posted in Alternative with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 11th March 2011 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Band: Weak of Wanting
Country: United Kingdom
Genre: Alternative
Site: Weak of Wanting @ VF

One can find many jewels of alternative music when searching the internet and that is certainly the case with Milton Keynes-based alternative band “Weak of Wanting”. The band are influenced by a wide range of bands from Slipknot and Led Zeppelin to Bowling For Soup, Nirvana and Nine Inch Nails. Despite the varied influences, Weak Of Wanting certainly have achieved their own unique sound. The vocals themselves bring a lot to the unique sound that the band has worked hard at creating. The guitars have a very raw sound to them, which perfectly demonstrated on their songs “Bruised” and “North of Misery”. A lot of their songs are very laid-back sounding, aside from “North of Misery” which sounds like an old-skool punk anthem crossed with a Darkthrone due to the aggressiveness of the vocals and the raw guitar riff. The sound quality of their tracks isn’t brilliant but that adds to the immensity of Weak of Wanting’s music.

Weak of Wanting are clearly a very talented band with a lot in store for them. With enough hard work and dedication, combined with their raw guitar riffs, laid back acoustic sections and unique sounding vocals, they could easily become as big as Slipknot, Nine Inch Nails or Bowling For Soup. So, keep an eye out for them on Kerrang and Scuzz.

Wolfchant – Call of The Black Winds [2011]

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 10th March 2011 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Band: Wolfchant
Album: Call Of The Black Winds
Release Year: 2011
Genre: Viking Metal/Black Metal/Folk Metal/Pagan Metal

Teutonic metal sextet “Wolfchant” are back with their newest release “Call of The Black Winds”.

The first track of the album, “Black Winds Rising (Prelude)” is an entirely orchestral track which eases the listener into an epic sounding atmosphere. “Stormwolves” comes blasting in straight after with a heavier-than-rock guitar riff, which sounds somewhat piratey. The vocals are a mix of black metal styled screams and aggressive death metal grunts, which adds a certain epic element to the track. The drums are well played as well and they seem to fit in well with the guitars.  The next track is “Eremit”, which is German for “Hermit”. It begins with a slow but heavy guitar intro mixed with keyboards and drums. The pace of the guitar and drums soon increases whilst the keyboard carries on its epic medley. The vocals soon make an appearance, grunting German lyrics which just adds aggressiveness to the track. The use of keyboards on this track helps keep the epic feeling flowing.

“Black Wind” is the next track. It begins with a fast-paced military styled drum beat which is soon replaced by heavy guitars, drums and aggressive vocals.  The lyrics speak of gods and spirits, which brings an epic-meets-fantasy-meets-metal kind of feel. The use of bass-sounding clean vocals  seems to give the track more “oomph”. The clean vocals certainly work brilliantly well with the harsher vocals. The use of keyboards towards the end of the track just makes this track complete. “Naturgewalt”, which is German for “Force of Nature” comes after, beginning with an aggressive yet epic guitar and keyboard intro. The drums seem somewhat heavier than the previous tracks – though they have been pretty heavy on the previous tracks. The aggressive vocals keep up the heaviness of the track. The clean bass-like vocals sound more aggressive on this track as well, almost as if the vocals were about to go into a battle. This track would have to be the best track on the album.

Next is “Heathen Rise” which begins with an epic, medieval styled keyboard intro, luring the listener into a state of calmness before the metal storm of heavy pounding guitars and drums make their appearance, followed by brutal sounding vocals. There is a use of clean vocals which sound slightly higher than the clean vocals on the previous tracks and they still work well with the harsher vocals. “Never Will Fall” comes next which begins with an epic keyboard intro, similar to that of the first track with what sounds to be some influence from the “Pirates of the Caribbean” soundtrack. The guitars soon follow, turning the track heavy. When the drums come in, the track turns even heavier. The track keeps a steady mixture of epic and brutality.

“‘Die Nacht Der Wölfe”, which means “Night of the Wolves” in German, is next. It begins with heavy intro that sounds oddly familiar. The use of German lyrics adds a certain epicness to the track. The drums seem to make this track heavier. Next is “The Last Farewell” which begins with an acoustic intro, setting a very folk-like atmosphere. The cleans vocals sound too deep to work well with the acoustic guitar. The track does turn heavy though, which suits the clean vocals much better. The lyrics create a very emotional mystique, almost emotional enough to bring a tear to the eyes. The use of an immense guitar solo just completes this track perfectly.

Straight after is “‘Der Stahl In Meinem Feinde” which means “The Steel In My Enemies” in German. The track begins with a dark sounding synth intro, creating a very gloomy atmosphere which is soon dispersed by the introduction of a brutal guitar riff. The vocals are on top form on this track. The track, itself, overall is somewhat similar to an old skool “Ensiferum” mixed with a hint of “Manowar” and “Hammerfall”. The final track, which is also the title track, “Call of the Black Winds” comes next to finish off the album. It begins with a mystical sounding synth intro before an epic guitar riff comes in to take over. The riff soon changes to something a bit more rough just before the vocals come in. There’s a use of acoustic guitars on this track as well, giving it a nice variety in terms of instrumentation.

“Call of the Black Winds” is one of the few brilliant albums out in today’s metal scene. With the use of keyboards and synths to set emotional atmospheres, combined with brutal guitars and drums and a powerful bass voice as well as the harsher vocals, “Call of the Black Winds” has the potential to get to the top and stay there for a while.

4.5/5

Nico Davidson