Archive for Bands and Artists

End Of Green – The Painstream

Posted in CD, Metal, Rock with tags , , , , , , on 28th August 2013 by Paul

End Of Green
The Painstream
Released16th August
Depressive Rock
Released via Napalm Records

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German rockers End Of Green can be best described as the hard rock Type O Negative. That doesn’t quite tell the full story, but it’s a good start. The band describe their music as depressed subcore, an unholy trinity of doom, gothic and hard rock. This release leans more toward a more accessible rock sound than previous efforts and despite the depressive subject matter; it makes for some pleasant listening. Having been producing albums since ’96, the band has clearly developed some noteworthy talent and experience, which really shows on this album. Each one of these melancholy rockers has a great hook and a simple but effective formula, with occasional splashes of gothic theatricality and black humour.

At 11 tracks, it’s difficult to pick any weak moments, and this is a very strong album. From slow, depressing, droning dirges to more pop orientated, upbeat songs with great hooks, this album has a lot going for it, and the band never wallow in their excesses but manage to sound fresh all the way through. Released just as summer is fading into autumn, this is one of the best examples of all things gothic and gloomy in 2013. A very pleasant listen.

4/5

Paul Gibbins

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Sea of Giants – The Greater Good

Posted in 'Core, CD with tags , , , , , , , , on 3rd July 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Sea of Giants
The Greater Good
Released 29th June 2013
Northern Deathcore
Released via eMortal Records

Since 2011, Sea of Giants have smashed their way through the Yorkshire scene, support acts such as Dead Harts, Grader, Giants, Sirena, Annotations of an Autopsy and more, becoming one of the hardest working bands in the East Yorkshire area. Hailing from the sea battered town of Bridlington, the five piece band already have two releases under their: Into The Deepest Depths and Northern Idols. The Greater Good is the third addition to the band’s career thus far.

Rehabilitated opens the EP before launching into the threatening and crushing track Reality North. Frontman McGougan’s vocals dominate the song, exchanging heavy handed blows with the combative use of riffs, provided by Mangan and Axup, and warlike rhythm sections. Every Wave wanes in the raw, primal energy that was offered up in the previous track but supplies some of Barlow’s most destructive bass work. Trenches rushes in like a bull in a china shop but provides a new dynamic on the band’s already cumbersome sound.

Changing Colours is too short lived of a track and has more potential if it were a longer song. Nevertheless, it still embodies Sea of Giants’ most staunch elements as well as some memorable clean vocal lines towards the end. Seasick starts up with a noticeable hook, reeling the listener into a storm of furious riffs and raging vocals. The lyrics add a very personal and emotional touch to the music, which blends in magnificently with the melodic licks and screaming rhythm passages. The calm, melodic section creates a whole new atmosphere and sound – one that keeps the song fresh.

The Greater Good is definitely a milestone that Sea of Giants have reached and displays the band’s evolution since starting up two years ago. Whilst it may not be everyone’s cup of tea, it shows what the Yorkshire quintet have to offer and why they’re one of the best acts on the northern circuit.

4/5

Nico Davidson

Sea of Giants online:

http://www.facebook.com/seaofgiantsuk
http://www.twitter.com/seaofgiantsuk
http://seaofgiantsuk.tumblr.com

 

Rhapsody Of Fire – From Chaos To Eternity [2011]

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 14th June 2011 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Band: Rhapsody Of Fire
Album: From Chaos To Eternity
Release year: 2011
Genre: Power Metal/Symphonic Metal

Rhapsody Of Fire have been a dominating force in both the Italian and European metal scenes. “From Chaos To Eternity” is the last album based on the fantasy saga that started with the band’s 1997 debut album “Legendary Tales” and is the first album to feature the band’s newest member Tom Hess.

The short lived track “Ad Infinitum” , which is Latin for “Endlessly”, is the first track of “From Chaos To Eternity”. The track is mainly composed of the technical guitar work of Luca Turilli combined with the epic narration of Christopher Lee. It is a brilliant opener for the album in true Rhapsody fashion. The title track, “From Chaos To Eternity” carries on from where “Ad Infinitum” finishes.  The track is already at a good start with the acute riffs and epic sounding piano sections. Fabio’s vocals are stronger than ever, the drums are masterfully played and the bass sections are pure genius. The third track, Tempesta Di Fuoco, which roughly translated means “Firestorm” in Italian, shreds its way next with a fast paced, technical intro riff mixed with some epic symphonic sections. There is use of some acoustic sections which brings a certain calm to the track whilst the piano only section takes away something from the track.

“Ghosts Of Forgotten Worlds” like the previous tracks, starts fast paced and technical, though some of the guitar sections on this track seem to have more bite and aggression.  The vocals blend well with the acoustic sections. The symphonic sections contrast superbly with the violent sound of the track. Even the drums seem to have more punch. The synth and guitar solos make this track one of the best ones on the album. “Anima Perduta”, Italian for “Lost Soul”, begins with the sound of wind followed by a beautiful combination of piano, flute and harpsichord. The vocals are soothing, blending with the solemn atmosphere and sound of the track. The symphonic sections make the track more majestic sounding. The guitars sound as if they don’t belong on the track however. Next is “Aeons Of Raging Darkness”. The introduction is mightily played bass section followed by an epic guitar riff mixed with a sagaic symphonic section. The guitar sections have more a speed metal element to them whilst the piano medleys add a hint of neoclassical to the track. The vocals, to begin with, are raw, aggressive and brutal, blending exceedingly well with the cleaner, operatic vocals. “Aeons Of Raging Darkness” is certainly one of the most aggressive, violent tracks ever to be performed by Rhapsody Of Fire and its a sound that works well for them.

“I Belong To The Stars” begins with a calmer introduction compared to the previous track though the track does soon turn heavy and symphonic. There seems to be more emphasis on the choir and symphony on this track, mixed in with some great piano medleys and strong vocals. Some of the guitar riffs leave much to be desired, as do some of the drum sections, however, the synth solo makes up for it. “Tornado” begins with a dramatic intro and the guitar riffs that follow are great. Like “Aeons Of Raging Darkness”, this track has a very aggressive and violent sound, complete with more harsh black metal screams mixed with the cleaner, more operatic vocals. The drum and guitar sections have improved since the previous track as well.

The last of the album is the almost twenty minute long epic “Heroes Of The Waterfalls’ Kingdom”. Christopher Lee’s narration is the intro, setting a certain legendary atmosphere. The vocals bring a very medieval sound, whilst the slight use of flute works well with the acoustic guitar.  The violin sections are well composed, making the track that much more pleasant to listen to. The symphonic sections signal the approaching metal assault, which was to be expected eventually. Fabio demonstrates his full range on this track, whilst the riffs are more acute and technical than they have been on the album. The harsh vocals can be heard in parts of this track, giving it more bite. The choir sections do seem to ruin the track ever so slightly, however everything else makes up for that. Some of the other guitar sections are more aggressive and barbaric, clearly demonstrating the masterful skills of the guitarists. Christopher Lee’s narration can be heard half way through the track, making it more and more sagaic. There is a conversation between the characters of the saga, which helps bring about a very legend-like feel, especially as it works well with the guitar riffs and symphonic sections. The track ends very solemnly and grandly. A perfect end to the saga.

“From Chaos To Eternity” fully demonstrates how much Rhapsody Of Fire’s sound has changed and mature since their first album. This album is perhaps the best one they’ve written and probably will be the best for a long to come. This is certainly a jewel to have for any fan of symphonic and power metal.

4.5/5

Nico Davidson