Archive for February, 2013

Delain announce special release

Posted in Featured, News with tags , , , , on 26th February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Symphonic rockers Delain have announced the release of a special record in May called Interlude. Interlude is will be made up of a blend of brand-new songs, special versions and mixes of popular Delain tracks, covers, and the single Are You Done With Me. The album will also include a special DVD featuring exclusive live footage and clips from the band’s career.

Interlude is not only a must for loyal Delain fans, but also for those who have not experienced the music by Delain so far. It is the perfect introduction to the world of Delain and the starting point to an emotional and bombastic journey.

Tracklisting is as follows:

1. Breathe On Me
2. Collars And Suits
3. Are You Done With Me (new single mix)
4. Such A Shame
5. Cordell
6. Smalltown Boy
7. We Are The Others (new ballad version)
8. Mother Machine (live)
9. Get The Devil Out Of Me (live)
10. Milk And Honey (live)
11. Invidia (live)
12. Electricity (live)
13. Not Enough (live)

Bonus DVD:
1. Invidia (Video Live @ MFVFestival)
2. Electricity (Video Live @ MFVFestival)
3. We Are The Others (Video Live @ MFVFestival)
4. Milk and Honey (Video Live @ MFVFestival)
5. Not Enough (Video Live @ MFVFestival)
6. Backstage footage
7. Get The Devil Out Of Me (Videoclip)
8. We Are The Others (Videoclip)
9. April Rain (Videoclip)
10. Frozen (Videoclip)

Interlude will be released in the UK on 6th May, later this year, just five days before the band headline the Dames of Darkness Festival. For more updates on the new album, head over to Delain’s official Facebook page.


Kull confirmed as headliners for first night of Warhorns 2013

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 25th February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Sheffield-based black metal act, Kull, who recently formed from members of Bal-Sagoth and Dyscaphia have been confirmed to headline Friday 27th September at The Warhorns Festival which will take place at The Duchess, York.

Also making their UK debut at Warhorns will be Dothbogria, the Latvian pagan metal act whom are well known for their use of Germanic lyrics.

Warhorns Festival will take place at the Duchess in York on Friday 27th and Saturday 28th September with ticket details to be announced.


Orianthi returns to the UK with Alice Cooper

Posted in Featured, News on 22nd February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

The platinum-selling solo artist and iconic guitarist Orianthi will continue as a key member of Alice Cooper’s band for what is expected to be Cooper’s sole UK appearance of 2013 – a headlining performance at Cropredy Festival in Oxfordshire. For those who are unaware, Cropredy is an annual event launched by UK folk legends Fairport Convention back in 1980; this year it runs from August 8th – 10th, with Alice topping the bill on the 8th – Of course this is bad news for any Cooper fans who are heading to Bloodstock instead that weekend.

Having been a part of Alice’s live set-up since August 2011 and completing two world tours in this role, Orianthi is used to trading musical blows with this true master of horror!

Meanwhile, Orianthi is gearing up for the release of her new highly-anticipated album, Heaven In This Hell; produced by Dave Stewart, the record will be released on Spinefarm Records/Robo Records, and is scheduled to be released on March 11th 2013.

Heaven In This Hell is Orinathi’s third solo outing following Violet Journey (2007) and Believe (2010) and it certainly delivers a mega-dose of rock, weaving in elements of modern country and swampy blues.

“I am so proud of this album because it really showcases my style of riff heavy rock and energetic blues,” Orianthi remarks. “The success of ‘Believe’ helped to give me credibility and afforded me the freedom to create the kind of album I have been wanting to make, with musicians I respect, playing together live in a studio, creatively exchanging ideas… the way I want all my records to be made. My friend, collaborator and producer, Dave Stewart and I just jammed and hashed out a variety of songs and sounds until we found the grooves that inspired us.”

The iTunes version of the album comes complete with two bonus tracks.

Follow Orianthi on Facebook:


Hatebreed – the divinity of purpose

Posted in Review on 21st February 2013 by Pieni

“The Divinity Of Purpose”
Released: 25th January 2013
Released via Nuclear Blast

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This has been the longest period between albums that Hatebreed fans had to endure – 3 years and 4 months – but I believe they’ll agree it was worth it. Singer Jamey Jasta stated prior to its release that “The Divinity Of Purpose” would be “all pit, no shit”. And the man knew what he was saying: the 6th full album of one of Connecticut’s finest (7th if you include the cover album “For The Lions”) is a bag of metalcore treats.

The album kicks off with a very punk-ish track, the one which was actually released on Youtube last November as a preview of what was to come – “ Put It To The Torch”. It bears that stripped-down harshness and loose speed of hardcore punk, as well as rebellious and aggressive vocals. Same can be said about “Indivisible”, whose bass line adds an even stronger feeling of punk to it.

“Honor Never Dies” and “Own Your World” both push more to the ‘core side of the album, the gang vocals and breakdowns emphasised.

Then a thrashy/heavy/speed metal touch to “Before The Fight Ends You”, “Dead Man Breathing” or “Bitter Truth” gives you a more intense and edgy vibe when it comes to the riffs.

Hatebreed intermingle various elements of other genres to their metalcore basis, but in a way that won’t compromise its nature. The result is a strong structure with enough details to make the songs stand out of the ordinary and yet keep that straight-forward and raw sound that will make it a pit-friendly album, such as their frontman claimed it would be.

4 / 5

Renata “Pieni” Lino

Irish rock band Sweet Taste join Rocksector family

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 21st February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

The Irish rock outfit Sweet Taste have joined the Rocksector Records roster and have also announced details about their new EP Hit The Spot which will be released on 22nd April 2013.

With a genuine exuberance this Belfast-born classic rock sounds fresh and exciting, with songs beautifully crafted and played. Audiences at a Sweet Taste show will testify to the band’s skills in the live arena and with Hit The Spot the band has fine-tuned its recording to combine the energy of a live feel with a modern clarity of sound.

Formed in 2009, the band self-released a 3-track EP in September of that year and via a true commitment to live shows soon forged a place as one of Ireland’s most sought-after live acts. They’ve appeared at some of Ireland’s premier venues such as The Limelight, Spring and Airbrake, and The Empire Music Hall.

In 2011 Sweet Taste crossed the waters to appear at Hard Rock Hell in North Wales, appearing alongside bands such as Black Stone Cherry, Quireboys, Therapy? and Crash Diet.

Sweet Taste were just recently confirmed for an acoustic set at SOS Festival in North Manchester on 20th July and further tour dates are anticipated around the same time. Meanwhile, they launch the new EP with a Belfast show at The Empire Music Hall on 18th April.

The band is offering a free MP3 download of the song Get Your Groove On from the EP. Go to this location for the MP3, together with a sampler video.


Cattle Decapitation announced as support for Cryptopsy’s European tour

Posted in Misc., News with tags , , on 19th February 2013 by izaforestspirit

Vegan Death Metallers Cattle Decapitation will return to Europe in April as support to the mighty Cryptopsy! Also on the bill are Decrepit Birth and The Last Shot Of War.

Cattle Decapitation singer Travis Ryan comments: “It’s great to hit the road with our friends Cryptopsy and Decrepit Birth again… and this time, in Europe! We’ll be hitting some spots harder than usual and some spots we’ve never been and we’re always into that. This might be the only time this year you guys see us so be sure to come out and rage with us!”

The full line-up:
+ EYECONOCLAST (from 12/04 to 20/04)
+ THE WAY OF PURITY (from 21/04 to 30/04)
+ REARMED (from 01/05 to 05/05)

Tour dates are as follows:

12/04/13 DE – Oberhausen – Helvete
13/04/13 DK – Aarhus – Metal Royal Fest
14/04/13 DE – Rostock – Alte Zuckerfabrik
15/04/13 DE – Berlin – K17
16/04/13 DE – Darmstadt – Steinbruch Theater
17/04/13 AT – Wien – Escape Metalcorner
18/04/13 CH – Zurich – Dynamo
19/04/13 IT – Pistoia – Pianeta Melos
20/04/13 IT – Romagnano Sesia – Rock & Roll Arena
21/04/13 FR – Luynes/Aix – Le Korigan
22/04/13 ES – Barcelona – Apolo 2
23/04/13 ES – Almeria – Sala Jala Jala
24/04/13 ES – Madrid – Caracol
25/04/13 PT – barosselas – SWR Fest
26/04/13 ES – Bilbao – Sonora
27/04/13 FR – Toulouse – Le Saint Des Seins
28/04/13 FR – Lyon – t.b.a.
29/04/13 FR – Nancy – t.b.a.
30/04/13 FR – Paris – t.b.a.
01/05/13 UK – Cardiff – Bogiez
02/05/13 UK – Glasgow – Audio
03/05/13 IE – Dublin – The Pint
04/05/13 UK – London – Underworld
05/05/13 NL – Tilburg – Neurotic Death Fest

Interview with Oz Bloodcurse [Neldöreth]

Posted in Interview with tags , , , , on 19th February 2013 by hammersmashedlauren

Hailing from Pennsylvania, black metal band Neldöreth have been going for almost 10 years and are coming back with a new line up as well as a new album. The band has been busy setting up tour dates and finishing their newest album The Saints of Blasphemy – I: Baptized in Blasphemy.  I got a chance to do an e-mail interview with vocalist Oz Bloodcurse where he describes what exactly Neldöreth  is all about and his take on the underground metal scene today.


Lauren: How would you describe Neldöreth?

Oz Bloodcurse: Neldöreth is a fire which cannot be extinguished. We are a vessel or communication between two worlds. A pack of ravenous wolves, who will devour anything in our way.

L: How did Neldöreth form?

OB: I had made a pact with Satan to bring his blasphemous will to man many years ago. For a very long time, I had a hard time finding members who followed this same path, but recently I found those members in Heathen and Abyss. Also, I was tired of trendy “metal” bands polluting the scene in PA and wanted to bring something much different to the scene.

L: Why did you choose the name Neldöreth?

OB: When I first formed the band, the films based on J. R. R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings, were very big. So I figured if I used a name from the series, it may draw some attention to ourselves, and we could then spread our message until them. The band’s lyrical content, however, has nothing to do with the books or films.

L: Who are your musical inspirations?

OB: We draw inspiration from any band who follows the same spiritual path as ourselves.

L: What are Neldöreth’s current plans for an album and shows?

OB: The new album, The Saints of Blasphemy – I: Baptized in Blasphemy, will be released on April 2nd. In May, we will do a short US run with Heathen and Abyss’ other band, Torment. Then in the Fall, we head out for a full US tour with our brothers in Hubris. In between tours we will begin working on the next album, which will be the second part of the Saints of Blasphemy trilogy.

L: What was the best and worst show ever played?

OB: One of my favorite rituals, was last year on the US tour when we headlined the Northern Hammerfest in Wisconsin. We hit the stage during the witching hour. It was a very inspiring experience for myself. The energy I felt around me was very strong. That is why when the promoter asked us to come back this year, of course I said yes! As far as worst, if after we play, if one person leaves and has gotten Satan’s message, then we have succeeded in our mission. Of course there are many shows with bad sound issues, or terrible opening bands, but this is common with every band, so I don’t let any of this sway me from the mission at hand.

L: How do you feel about the underground metal scene today?

OB: I really do not pay attention to any new bands coming out today, as I am stuck in the past when it comes to music. I truly believe the best and most influential bands, came out of the 60s – 90s. I am sick of the same bands, playing trendy music that all sounds the same, or thrash bands mimicking the bands of the 80s like a bunch of parrots  I feel nothing from any of these and to me, they are nothing special and will eventually phase themselves out for the next trend. However, I do enjoy the rising black metal and war metal scene out of Finland, Asia, and North/South America.

L: Anything you’d like to say to your fans?

OB: Keep an eye out for us this year when we tour the US and keep an eye out for our new album.

Bay Area thrash outfit Heathen announce first UK show in two years

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on 18th February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Exciting news for thrash metal fans as Bay Area thrashers Heathen have just announced their first UK date in over two years at London’s Camden Underworld. The show will take place on June 23rd later this year.

Founded in 1984 by Lee Altus (whom is also currently a member of Exodus), Heathen have released three albums, Breaking The Silence, Victims Of Deception and The Evolution Of Chaos, and their fourth album and debut with Nuclear Blast Records is currently in the pipeline due to be released in 2014.

Support bands are to be confirmed and tickets for this sell-out show will be going on sale on Friday 22nd February. Tickets will be available from

Adv tickets: £14.50

For more information please head over too:


Interview with Glyn Beasley [Ravenage]

Posted in Featured, Interview with tags , , , , , , on 15th February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Glyn Beasley has been the leader and vocalist for the epic Viking metal warband Ravenage since its formation five years ago. Glyn is also the co-promoter for the Metieval Festival, an event which has seen bands like Hecate Enthroned, Blaze Bayley and Power Quest play. He’s also heavily involved with the Warhorns Festival – The UK’s premier folk metal festival. In an exclusive interview with Nico, Glyn reveals his thoughts on Hull’s metal scene, the UK’s folk metal scene and clears up his roles in both Metieval and Warhorns. Glyn also makes reference to his love for goat’s milk.

Nico: The internet is quite barren when it comes to details of Ravenage’s early day, so my first question is; how did Ravenage come into existence?

Glyn: Ravenage were formed in December 2007 from the remnants of Heathen ForayHeathen Foray were formed a couple of years earlier by Sam and myself, first as just a recording project, but then a live band. Rich, aka Lord Legion, joined us on bass almost immediately and then later Chris on drums.  We probably did about 10 gigs in total, mostly in Hull and Beverley, but we also played Derby, Wakefield, Scunthorpe, Birmingham and Withernsea.  We also released an album and an EP and had reasonable success for a Hull-based band. Towards the end of 2007,  we recruited Mark Wood as a second guitarist as Sam was struggling with commitment, at the same time Chris had also lost interest and there was a definite divide in the band.  I didn’t feel comfortable continuing HF without Sam, so I put it on hold. At the same time I still wanted to be in an active band in a similar style and enjoyed working with both Rich and Mark, so over the Christmas period we wrote and recorded The Ravenage demo so that we could find a suitable keyboardist and drummer.  A chance meeting in Spiders Nightclub secured the services of former Gwydion drummer Bruno, and then I think Elliot found us on Myspace via has solo project Nogothrim, and full rehearsals began in March 2008. Elliot tweaked the demos and re-recorded  the keyboards, and we made our debut in Swansea supporting Annwn that April.

Nico: The band has seen several differing line-up changes through the years, how have these line-up changes affected Ravenage‘s sound?

Glyn: I think our sound has just been a natural progression since the Hardrada’s Fall EP, prior to then our sound was more raw and leaned more towards black metal, rather than the folky melodic death metal sound we have today.  To be honest, though we’ve had a fair share of line up changes over the years, everyone has known what Ravenage is about and has adapted to our style.  For our next album, I’m very keen to hear what Chris, Boxhead and Art bring to the table alongside the more established writing styles of Elliot and Danny.

Nico: Things have been quiet over the last year or so within Camp Ravenage, is there any reasoning for this?

Glyn: I wouldn’t necessarily say we’ve been quiet, it’s more of a case that we’ve not been gigging as often as we have in the past for number of reasons.  We’re probably more selective of gigs now as without major label support, we’ve done as much as we can in the UK—we’ve played Bloodstock, Pagan Pride and Gathering The Clans, and most major UK cities, as well as some continental gigs and festivals. Like most bands we’ve had good turn outs and we’ve had poor ones.  So, these days, it’s just a case of ensuring we play the right gigs and not the same place too often as we try to make every gig special, this year will probably follow in the same vein.  Also, as well as Ravenage, I have a full time job, a beautiful girlfriend, a wolfdog as well as commitments to both Warhorns and Metieval, so I don’t want to burn myself out completely.  Elliot also has his commitments to Alestorm, Danny to Aloeswood as well as being in full-time education alongside Chris and Boxhead, and Art is a full time music  lecturer. This doesn’t mean that anyone is less committed to Ravenage – wait til you hear the quality of our new songs – it’s just a case of balancing things out and staying fresh both physically and mentally.

Nico: Ravenage’s latest album, Fresh From Fields Of Victory, was released in 2011. Is there a new album in the works?

Glyn: Absolutely, and the plan is to release it this year.  We have about six songs written and have already performed Northbound Part II live.  It’s unlikely we’ll air any others prior to the album release, but you never know.  We’re also planning on releasing a video for one of the tracks, which should be a lot of fun.

Nico: A couple of Ravenage‘s members are involved with other projects – Danny with Aloeswood and Elliot with Alestorm – Has this made progress for Ravenage more challenging?

Glyn: Not now, though when Elliot first joined Alestorm we recruited Art as a session player to cover his absence.  Art loved playing live with us and we managed to fulfil last year’s gigging schedule by essentially having two keyboard players.  Art is a fantastic keyboardist as well as a great bloke and we all liked having him around, and after learning our set it did seem like a waste to just be a session player. Elliot is also an amazing all-round musician and vocalist and can play any instrument with ease, and as he now has his keyboard fix in Alestorm, playing bass with Ravenage enables him to have a lot more stage freedom and live presence. Also, during his absences, its easier for us to bring in a session bass player than a keyboard player. Regarding Danny and Aloeswood, it’s not really a problem as Danny is currently only playing select gigs.  However, I have no doubt that Aloeswood will eventually become a huge part of the UK black metal scene.  Danny is an amazing songwriter and is already beginning to receive the recognition he deserves.  Also, while Boxhead is involved with other bands and projects, he still has enough energy to be in at least half a dozen more bands so that is not a problem either.

Nico: You’re involved with both Metieval and Warhorns and this has obviously confused people, regarding your roles within both. Could you explain what your roles are in each and how they differ from one another?

Glyn: Metieval was formed in 2006 by Stig and myself to bring a professional festival to the Hull and East Yorkshire region.  Metieval organized the East Riding Rock Festival in 2007, 2008, and 2009.  Due to struggling to find a suitable venue and  over-estimating the local metal scene, we decided to call it a day in 2011 with the Metieval Requiem to finish things off.  However, after a bit of a break and a rethink we decided to resurrect the festival in late 2012 with the Metieval Winterfest, and have plans for future events. Regarding Metieval, Stig and I are the founders and have equal say in all related matters . We do have a good support team around us especially Stig’s wife Lyn, Elliot Vernon and Hull Rockers Jake and Silver Back.
Warhorns Festival is the creation Marc Ollis – I work as his right-hand man alongside Shamsi Modarai and Elliot Vernon.  However, all major decisions are made by Marc and I only book and contact bands on his behalf because of my previous experience co-running Metieval events. The difference between Metieval and Warhorns is that Metieval is regionally-based in Hull and East Yorkshire, and will book any suitable band that plays any genre of metal or rock. Warhorns, on the other hand, is purely a Viking/folk/black metal festival with a more national and international scope.

Nico: As you’re involved with Hull’s music scene, to an extent, as both a musician and a promoter, what are your thoughts on Hull’s music scene? How does it differ from the other scenes around the UK?

Glyn: I can’t really speak for other cities’ metal scenes as I’m not involved in any and I’m also a lot less involved in the Hull music scene then I used to be.  Before the resurrection of Metieval Winterfest, I think I’d been to maybe two gigs in two years.  I did recently self-promote and organise a gig for Old Corpse Road as part of the Northern leg of their UK tour, but that was a one-off, and a favour for a friend.
There are a couple of excellent local bands out there.  Obviously Sworn Amongst have been very successful, although I don’t know how they’ll get on without Frank at the helm.  Also, Infernal Creation are my personal favourites and are getting some well deserved recognition and good gigs of late.  I also like Alice In Thunderland from Bridlington, and Innersylum have the region’s strongest vocalist in the form of Derk. I also thought Pastel Jack had some good ideas, and was surprised by their demise as I thought they were on the brink of getting to the next level.  At  Metieval Winterfest, I was impressed by some of the more hardcore bands, in particular Downfall and Battalions.
The problem I think with the Hull Metal Scene was actually pointed out to me by my friend Pip (otherwise known as Raeven Irata).  She noted that the majority of metal fans in Hull are already in bands, and local bands don’t really support one  another’s’ gigs.  I’m no exception to this as I rarely go out and support other bands due to not having enough time  I think this is why over the years the scene has divided and fragmented. Also, the loss of venues coupled with the fact that a lot of people appear to prefer to watch a bunch of imposters (tribute bands) than a band playing original music, has taken its toll, hence where we are now.  I’d also say that without Darren Bunting and Music HQ, Hull’s metal scene would be dead.
There is still room I think for decent gigs in Hull and the surrounding area.  Metieval, Valkyrian, Sunkfest, and Springboard all tend to be successful.  Stig and I have also noted that there’s a new festival called Nukefest that appears to be a complete carbon copy of Metieval Winterfest.

Nico: Obviously being apart of the Warhorns family means you’ve got more involvement with the pagan and folk metal scenes. What are your thoughts on the current folk and pagan metal scenes?

Glyn: Since I’ve not travelled to a Euro Festival since 2011, I can only really comment on the UK Scene.  There are some great UK bands out there at the minute.  Old Corpse Road‘s album is amazing and they just get better and better each time I see them.  Sheffield’s Northern Oak, also deliver the goods, and I’m always a fan of Shallow Intentions from Weymouth and Manchester’s Andraste.  An up and coming band to watch out for are Morlich from Scotland.  I also understand that the recent Korpiklaani tour was a huge success and hopefully Heidevolk, Cryptic Age and Celtachor will storm the Jorvik Viking Festival next week.  I know that Warhorns has had over 50 UK bands apply and some of them are rather bloody marvellous, it will be a difficult choice selecting the right line up for this years festival, which is a good thing.

Nico: What’s the meaning behind the band’s name, Ravenage? Is there an image or concept behind it?

Glyn: Most of our lyrics and themes are set in the Dark Ages or at least pre -1066.  This was the age of wolves, eagles and ravens – the beasts of battle.  The name just came to me one day when I was enjoying a pint of goat’s milk and thinking of song titles, and I came up with Foretelling the Ravenage which was an early HF song.

Nico: If you could replace the soundtrack to any movie with your own music, which one would it be and why?

Glyn: I love classic epic movies from the 50s and 60s like El Cid and The Vikings.  Miklos Rozsa is my favourite composer of all time, I also love Basil Poledouris hence the secret Robocop track hehe.  Nobody could replace the soundtracks written by those composers. Maybe the movie for us do a soundtrack for hasn’t been filmed yet. Maybe that should go on the ‘To do’ board! Make a movie, that is.

Nico: Are there any bands from the folk metal scene that you’d recommend to our readers?

Glyn: Yep, I’ll recommend a couple of lesser known, but top quality bands. Please check out:
Æther Realm from USA (who are not from Finland).
Black Messiah from Germany (who are playing at Warhorns).
Elzevir from Moscow (I’m not sure if they’re currently active).

Nico: Is there anything you’d like to say to our readers?

Glyn: Thanks for the supporting Ravenage these past five years, here’s to the next five and beyond! And remember to drink goats milk – as well as tasting good it will keep you healthy and full of inspiration!

The 69 Eyes w/ Generation Graveyard in London

Posted in Gig, Live with tags on 14th February 2013 by Pieni

The 69 Eyes, Generation Graveyard
O2 Academy Islington, London

12th February 2013

The 69 Eyes, a.k.a. Helsinki Vampires, have been touring Europe in support of their latest release, “X”. On February 12th, they sank their goth’n’roll fangs in London’s O2 Academy Islington.

But before that, local death punks Generation Graveyard had the honor of warming things up. Their music may be “a little harsher” than what most of the headliners’ fans are used to, but in general the crowd went along with it pretty well. Someone screamed something less pleasant at some point, but as singer Max pointed out, that someone had paid a ticket and was watching him and his band, so…

They kicked off with “Abominate/Desolate”, showing right away how serious they were about delivering a very energetic gig. An 8-song setlist that included “Suburban Suicide”, “Deletist” and “The Empty”, and which ended after 40 minutes with the title-track of their EP “Poison City”. Maybe somewhat out of place, but they did play a great show.

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Before Generation Graveyard got on stage, the background music had been Rage Against The Machine. Now that the stage was being set for The 69 Eyes and the Finns were about to get on stage, the mood changed completely into a Deep South vibe – something singer Jyrki 69 is known to appreciate. Then at 21:20 the Helsinki Vampires “met” the Southern Vampires of “True Blood” as Jace Everett’s “Bad Things” echoed and the lights went down… and the crowd screamed, knowing the show was on.

It started for real with what drummer Jussi 69 claims to be “one of the best rock songs written in years” “Love Runs Away”. And it felt like one of the best rock performances played in years.

Later on, when introducing “Black”, Jyrki said it was a song with a very philosophical theme – a song about how he loved girls dressed in black. “And I bet you’re all wearing black tonight”, he added in the end. Well if it wasn’t “all”, it was pretty close to it.

Timo-Timo picked up a semi-acoustic guitar and so it was no surprise to hear Jyrki say they would play the second single from “X”, “Borderline”. Despite its softer nature, the bodies kept moving to its rhythm. Same with “Red”, the “real” ballad of the night, where Bazie got carried away during the solo and extended it a bit.

Focusing on “X”, they still played classics such as “Gothic Girl”, “Dance D’Amour” and “Betty Blue”. And some more “contemporaneous” hits like “Perfect Skin”, “Never Say Die” or “Devils”. After the latter, the band left the stage. About an hour had passed, just like that, proving the old saying that “time flies when you’re having fun”.

When returning for the encore, and after Bazie fooled around with the chords from “The Chair”, Jyrki took the chance to thank us for being there that night and supporting them. That they’ve been around for 23 years, and that they can do another 23 “if you want us to”. The applause and roars were even more deafening than when he called us The London Vampires.

“The Chair” was then properly played, followed by “Brandon Lee”, and someone who had been shouting “Lost Boys” for at least half of the show, finally had her wish come true. “You wanna rock!”, Jyrki screamed, and as always, he wasn’t satisfied with the screams he got in return. Also as always, he said that the previous night (Paris) had been a lot louder. Again as always, we booed and destroyed our vocal chords in that final song.

As the band was saying “thank you” and “goodbye” and throwing the usual souvenirs (picks, drum sticks, setlists…), another tv theme was used as outro – “Sons Of Anarchy” “This Life”, performed by Curtis Stigers & The Forest Rangers. What a bloody great night!

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Text & photos by Renata “Pieni” Lino

HIM announce details for new album; exclusive UK show to showcase the new album

Posted in News on 14th February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Finnish “love metal” band HIM have revealed the details of their long awaited, highly anticipated, brand new studio album.

Recorded in their home country with long-time producer Hiili Hiilesmaa, the new album – which is titled Tears On Tape – is scheduled for release in UK & Ireland on April 29th via Cooking Vinyl’s rock imprint DoubleCross. The album will be released in the U.S. and Canada the following day (April 30th) on Razor & Tie.

Fresh from mastering the album in over New York, Ville Valo commented "Cooking Vinyl’s history speaks for itself and for some unfathomable reason they have clearly understood HIM’s rather perverse musical fetishes (which is as rare as hen’s teeth !). DoubleCross (of the inverted kind) here we come!”

Formed in 1991 by vocalist Ville Valo, guitarist Mikko “Linde”Lindström, and bassist Mikko “Migé” Paananen, HIM’s previous seven albums have seen them win a worldwide following, becoming the first Finnish act to achieve platinum sales status in the US.

A formidable live act, the band is currently limbering up for dates in 2013, including a highly anticipated appearance at Download Festival.

The band will also perform an extremely exclusive show at London’s Dingwalls venue on April 26th, giving fans their first chance to hear the new material in a very intimate setting before the album hits the shelves. Tickets go on sale at 9 am Monday 18th Feb 2013 from this location.

Viking metallers Ravenage and more confirmed for Valk-Fest 2013

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on 14th February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

This year’s Valkyrian Festival (29th of November – 1st of December) is now bolstered by the announcement of five more absolutely sterling bands. You can catch these guys, along with Nya, Narcotic Death, Aonia, Old Corpse Road and a plethora of others for only a fiver over the course of the weekend.

For the Friday, Scottish power trio Storm of Embers are making their way south. Hot on the tail of their rapturous EP launch, these guys are eager to make their way into everyone’s music library with their unique blend of progressive, melodic and post-metal. You can get their EP I from this location.

Also on the Friday, Dead Man’s Conspiracy are bringing what they call “Real Metal” to Valk-Fest 2013. Formed in 2009, the 5-piece have gone about carving a niche for their “energetic, chaotic and unpredictable live shows”. Their music is available to listen to at their Facebook page.

Saturday brings yet another Scottish band down from their heights – heroes of the underground Maelstrom. Having supported bands like Tyr, Wodensthrone, Winterfylleth, Alestorm and A Forest of Stars over the almost 9 years of their existence, the well-dressed gents will crush this year’s festival with their intense, brutal combination of symphonic black and doom metal. Not ones to miss: with their colossal live show, they certainly ought to be massive. Pick up on their stuff at this location.

Headlining the Friday are none other than Yorkshire’s very own heathen warband Ravenage, who have shared the stage with big names like Tyr, Skyforger and Hecate Enthroned. Formed in the cold winter of 2007, Ravenage have grown into one of the most formidable forces of the UK’s underground scene.

And finally, on the Sunday, hailing from the birthplace of heavy metal, Dakesis will be bringing their cheese-layered power metal sounds to Valkyrian Festival. After being unable to play last year’s Valk-Fest due to illness, the five piece prog. power outfit are more than pleased to have been announced for this year’s event.

Valkyrian Festival will take place at Shades Nightclub 29th November through to 1st December – all profits from the festival go to RapeCrisis. Tickets are £5 for weekend and available from this location. Further details and news can be found at the official Valkyrian Festival Facebook and Twitter.


Waylander announce plans for new album to commemorate 20 year anniversary

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on 12th February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

ArdChieftain O’Hagan, vocalist of the influential Northern Irish pagan metal band Waylander has announced that the band are planning on a new release late 2013 to commemorate their 20 year anniversary.

As many of you may be aware of, 2013 sees Waylander celebrate two decades of existence, an impressive milestone in anyone’s book. We plan to have a new release out towards the very end of 2013, which, we hope will please fans both old and new.

We will write and record a concept mini album which will deal with the Four Fire Festivals of the Irish Pagan calendar, expanding on the subject matter dealt with in Twin Fires of Beltíne. As well as reworking Twin Fires of Beltíne, slightly, the other 3 songs will deal with Imbolg, Lughnasadh and Samhain. As a bonus we will include an interview DVD, explaining the history of the band and revealing the truth behind the trials and tribulations of the turbulent lifespan of the beast that has become known as Waylander. We hope also to include some live footage and some behind the scenes Hallionry which will reveal the personalities of the various band members.

The band’s latest album Kindred Spirits was released on July 16th in Europe and August 14th in North America 2012 through Listenable Records and has gained worldwide acclaim.


Black Messiah confirmed for Warhorns Festival

Posted in News on 12th February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Teutonic pagan metallers Black Messiah have been added to the bill for this year’s Warhorns Festival. They’ll be joining Scottish black metallers Maelstrom, Hull’s own Infernal Creation and Sheffield folk metal band Northern Oak. Along side, Black Messiah, Old Corpse Road will also be returning to festival this year, as well as Andraste who recently opened for Korpiklaani.

Warhorns Festival will take place on 27th and 28th September at The Duchess in York. Ticket information will be available soon.

Cannibal Corpse live in Tampere

Posted in Gig, Live on 11th February 2013 by izaforestspirit

Hour of Penance, The Black Dahlia Murder, DevilDriver, Cannibal Corpse
Pakkahuone, Tampere
10th February 2013

A sedate Sunday night in the city of Tampere and yet Pakkahuone was packed full of metalheads. The reason – the almighty death metal legends Cannibal Corpse were in town, and with Tampere being only the second stop during their European tour with The Black Dahlia Murder and DevilDriver, the expectations were deservedly high.

Hour of Penance
This Italian death metal band acted as a good warm-up. Their show was solid, filled with decent sounding death metal. Nothing ground-breaking as far as this particular genre is concerned but a good start to the night nonetheless.

The Black Dahlia Murder

I have never really understood the hype behind this band. Their music has never really been to my taste; a little too close to metal-core for my liking, but one thing I have to give to them is that they sure know how to agitate the crowd. The mosh-pit was in full swing and the band’s stage performance was a big hit with the audience. I’m sure that any of their fans would have been delighted with the show.

Now here’s a name that I’ve definitely heard before. I remember when DevilDriver first started out with their nu-metal -esque self-titled debut album back in 2003. Fast forward a decade and the Californian groove death metallers have established themselves within the scene. Their show was an energetic one packed with fervor which proved to be a winning formula with the ever-growing mosh-pit. The singer, Dez Fafara, even took the time to wish “happy birthday” to two of the band members and got the crowd to do the same. The highlight for me was their performance of ‘I Could Care Less’.

Cannibal Corpse

Cannibal Corpse were the main highlight of the evening for me. Death metal is one of my favorite metal genres and these guys put on a excellent performance. My neck is still a little sore from head-banging along to the classics such as ‘Fucked With A Knife’, ‘Disfigured’, ‘The Time To Kill Is Now’ and ‘Hammer Smashed Face’. George “Corpsegrinder” Fisher led by example, demonstrating the best practice for head-banging which was according to his own admission impossible to top. That still did not stop me and many others from trying!

Overall it was a really good night and I hope to see Cannibal Corpse live again soon.

Iza Raittila

Korpiklaani w/Support @ Club Academy, Manchester

Posted in Gig, Live with tags , , , , , , , on 11th February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Korpiklaani, Metsatöll and Andraste
Club Academy, Manchester
2nd February 2013

Part of Korpiklaani’s extensive European tour, in support of the new album, Manala, brought them to the Manchester Academy – More specifically Club Academy – with their touring support Metsatöll. At the beginning of the part, before the local support act, Andraste began their set, the venue looked empty with the handful of bodies in there though the crowd soon doubled, tripled and more in size.

Manchester’s own folk metal act Andraste opened up the night, with some significant changes since I’d last seen them play almost a year ago. The addition of the violinist, whose name escapes me, added an extra layer of folk-infused sounds to their already domineering northern Celtic sound. The northern war band played a number of catchy tunes, blasting out their heathen ballads of days and myths gone by with expert precision. The folk-choir vocals performed by four members of the band during in some of the songs provided efficient reinforcements for the blistering guitar riffs and storming percussion that thundered like Taranis’ wheel. The folkier elements, conjured by Coll Féchin, added a touch of easier listening to the war-like anthems and added emphasis to Atticus’ guttural and haunting growls. One thing about Andraste’s set that really did catch me off guard though was the newer material that was inclined towards the progressive side of the band’s sound but it still proved to be enjoyable, almost breath taking. Andraste certainly lived up to their Celtic deity’s namesake that night as they sent their heavy, folktastic anthems screaming forth unto the horde that was amassing. [4/5]

Unfortunately, I missed the beginning of Metsatöll’s set due to an attempted interview with the headliners, Korpiklaani. By the time I was back into the area where the band were playing, they were already progressing through their set with the crowd warmed up them greatly. I hadn’t check the band out before the gig so I wasn’t quite sure what to expect though I’d heard good things about Metsatöll but those good things didn’t do the Estonian metallers justice. For want of a better word, their set was truly majestic, displaying a beautiful fusion of heavy guitar playing and the more melodic folk-inspired sounds of the flutes and bagpipes. The vocals had a mystifying quality to them – A quality that entwined itself within the strength of the vocals, helping to add that extra oomph to the band’s performance. Hopefully Metsatöll will come back to British shores again in the future. [4.5/5]

With the crowd whipped into a near-violent frenzy, Korpiklaani took their respective places on the stage. The Finnish metal outfit proved to be entertaining enough, blasting out their accordion-and-violin plastered songs with a waterfall of charisma and energy flowing from the frontman, Jonne. The vocals were quite gruff throughout the set but that added more feeling to the songs, especially some of the darker sounding ones and suited the drinking songs (like Vodka) extremely well. The riffs were a strong, driving force throughout the band’s performance, going toe-to-toe with the violin and accordion, as well as the heavy, boisterous drum work. The insanely fun to jig along to song Vodka proved to be a crowd favourite until the sound cut out, though that was no fault of Korpiklaani’s. The highlight of their set, for me, was the performance of the leek spinning song, properly known as Ievan Polka. The band certainly made that song their own that night in Manchester. [4/5]

Between three great bands and a lot of drunken pits and alcohol-influenced jigs, mostly encouraged by Korpiklaani, I think it’s safe to say that it was one hell of a gig and certainly is going to rate as one of the most memorable gigs of the year and possibly the next decade.

Nico Davidson

Photography by Nico Davidson. Pictures of the entire gig can be found atthis location.

Lucifer – Feeding The Machine (demo)

Posted in Review with tags , , , , , on 10th February 2013 by izaforestspirit

Feeding The Machine (demo)
Released: 1st August 2011
Thrash Metal

‘Feeding The Machine’ is the second demo from the Lithuanian thrash metal band Lucifer.

The title track starts off with a slow guitar intro, which gives in to some thrash metal riffage and Toxic Holocaust -style vocals. This particular song is very guitar driven with the riffs and the solos being the main focus whilst the drums maintain a steady pace. Not that it’s a bad thing, in fact it’s pretty much what you would expect from a band of this genre.

Then we come to ‘Killchain’ which skips the slow intro, starting with a full blown assault of mid-paced guitar riffage. There’s also more guitar solos and the vocals are far more prominent on here than they were on the title track. Finally we come to ‘Harmony’ which has a similar slow start and picks up the pace as the song progresses. In a way it feels like a continuation of the title track as the guitar patterns are very similar, although this time the vocals enter the spotlight.

It’s hard to judge a band based on just three songs. All I can say is that this is a very promising thrash metal demo and I can’t wait to see what these guys come up with next.


Iza Raittila


With One Last Breath announce co-headline UK tour

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 7th February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

York-based band With One Last Breath have just announced a string of UK dates for a joint headline tour with Swedish metal act Adept. The band will be touring in support of their new EP, Wake The Dead, which will be released via Small Town Records later this month. The band comments: “We are really excited about this tour. It’s a big step for us. This will be the first time to go out as a headlining band and although we are a little nervous, we are so ready for it. We are stoked to be co-headlining with Adept too, they are a great band and they will kill it no doubt. It’s going to be so fun playing all the re done versions of the EP tracks. People will dig it i think. It’s about time these songs get some live jams and we’re excited to play them. It’s going to be a mental tour and i hope everyone gets a chance to witness it!”

With One Last Breath have shared stages with a number of prominent and upcoming bands such as Asking Alexandria, Of Mice & Men, Yashin and Architects, gaining attention along the way from The Artery Foundation  and TKO Booking. Together with their dedicated team, they are planning and plotting a steady takeover of the modern scene.

Catch With One Last Breath live on the following dates.

APRIL 2013


Floor Jansen begins recording vocals for second ReVamp album

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on 6th February 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Former After Forever vocalist and current touring Nightwish vocalist Floor Jansen has recently entered the studio and began recording vocals for ReVamp‘s second album which is due for release in autumn 2013. Floor Jansen comments: “I will start recording the vocals for the second ReVamp album next week! Been working on the last vocal lines and lyrics today and have some days ahead to spend on this great part of my work as musician! The [other] guys [in the band] have been working their asses off already recording the drums, guitars, bass and keys. Can’t wait to hear the finished result pounding through the speakers… but we all have to be patient a while longer.


Odraedir – Troll’s Cave EP

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on 5th February 2013 by izaforestspirit

Troll’s Cave EP
Released: March 2013
Pagan /Folk Metal

Troll’s Cave‘ is the new EP from the Czech folk metal band Odraedir. It is the follow up to their first demo ‘Pagan Forest’ which was released in 2011.

First up is the title track with what resembles a homage to Finntroll. The vocal style, guitar melodies and song structure are very similar. Just add a touch of flute and jaw harp to the guitars and keyboards and you’re in for a very catchy folk metal treat of a song! The Rise of Cernunnos has the same uplifting feel to it and it’s hard to listen to it without being tempted to dance, air-guitar, head-bang or at least sway along. Unlike the previous song however, this one features a short, melodic instrumental part half way through the track which acts as a break in the party as if to catch your breath or grab the nearest refreshment.

Last up is Campfire, a catchy instrumental featuring what appears to be a homage to Ensiferum’s ‘Lai Lai Hei’. If you’re not already dancing around in the mosh-pit, I suggest you get there soon! Then the song lives up to its namesake with the sounds of a burning fire marking the end to this delightful EP.

4/5 – a highly enjoyable EP. Thanks for cheering me up!

Iza Raittila