Archive for Skyclad

Band of the Month: Ravenage [09/2012]

Posted in Band Of The Month with tags , , , , , , , on 8th September 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Following an epic battle of votes, none other than Hull-based Viking warband Ravenage came out as the victor.

Formed back in the cold winter nights of 2007, the band have gone on to forge together a unique, powerful and epic sound, along with three releases under their sword belts. Ravenage have also shared the stage with the likes of Skyclad and Hecate Enthroned, as well as Viking metal heavyweights Tyr. Later this month, Ravenage will also be partaking in the first ever Warhorns festival, where they will be playing with the likes of Skyforger, Nothgard and Wolfchant, as well as Cryptic Age, Old Corpse Road and Norderobring.

So, if you like your metal loud, heavy, melodic, vicious and more epic than Lord of the Rings, Ravenage are well worth checking out.

http://facebook.com/officialravenage

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Power Quest confirmed to headline revived Metieval festival

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 27th August 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

April last year, Hull saw the last Metieval festival, which boasted acts such as Skyclad and Hecate Enthroned, along with more local acts such as XIII, The Occupier and Pastel Jack. Though a new revived Metieval was meant to happen October of last year, it never came about.

Recently, the festival’s organisers Glyn Beasely and Stig Styles set out to bring Metieval back to life on the metal scene of Hull. Just today, Power Quest have been announced to headline the newly revived Metieval festival. The event will take place on Sunday 16th December at the Piper Club in Hull.

Further details, including ticket prices, full line-up and age limits, to be announced.

Other band son the bill include Infernal CreationAlice In Thunderland and Battalions.

Cryptic Age – Sounds Of Infinity

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , , on 11th June 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Cryptic Age
Sounds Of Infinity
Released 26th May 2012
Power-Folk Metal
Self-Released

Cryptic Age are a relatively young band on the metal scene but they’ve already penned a mighty beginning to what could be a very long legacy which includes sharing the stage with folk metal legends Skyclad and black metal heroes Hecate Enthroned, as well as the release of their debut EP last year and it doesn’t end there, Cryptic Age will be sharing the stage with Latvian folk metal heavyweights Skyforger in September at the first ever Warhorns Festival, as well as playing Metalcamp a month before and this year has seen the release of their first full-length release: Sounds Of Infinity, an album that I’ve been waiting to hear since they announced they were recording it. I think it’s safe to say I may have got a little excited when I received it.

Sheayn ny Feaynid is the first track of the album and what a way to begin the album. The dark orchestration and monologue create a very mythic yet tragic sound which really does set the mood. Maelstrom follows next with a powerful symphonic sound blended in more hard rock styled riffs. The vocals are impeccable, adding an undoubtful spirit to the track. The chorus is very poignant, staying with you long after listening to the song. The tribal-like drumming of Fortuneteller signals in a change of sound for the album, with a use of exotic sounding riffs that tease the ears in a similar manner to a fine wine teasing the taste buds. The vocals are very harrowing, which suits the mystical and exotic soundings of the keyboards and the callous guitar and bass sections. The guitar solo embeds a modern sound into the track, which fortunately doesn’t dampen the track.

Horsemen of the Vale signals another change of sound for the album, ushering grand, majestic and epic riffs. The vocal sections are very arioso and dulcet. The keyboards really shine out in parts of the song, keeping the symphonic element strong. The end of the song has a genius touch with the sound of a glass smashing followed “Bloody Lancashire bastard. I’ll have ya!” – Though I doubt anyone other than Yorkshire folk will appreciate that section. The beginning of The Aftermath sounds like a scene from 300 before the Ensiferum-like riffs ravage through the speakers like a horde of angry Celts. The vocals, much like the guitars and drum sections, are strong yet aggressive. The monologue towards the halfway point of the track is mystifying and enchanting and the section that follows after is a beautiful yet savage mixture of symphonic and heavy elements. The calmer section, composed of flutes leads back into the Ensiferum-like riffs, rather masterfully. Sea Invocation is possibly the most bewitching song on the album, containing a medieval essence. It’s an unexpected track and yet it fits ever so perfectly on the album. It’s certainly a track any fans of Celtic music.

Perpetually Blind (Sounds of Infinity: Part I) begins with an enchanting vocal melody that gradually leads into a mighty symphonic piece. The guitar riffs are interesting, sounding like a twisted power metal riff. The symphonic parts of the track add a very august sound to the track, making it feel more tragic than one of Shakespeare’s plays. The next track Eternity Beckons (Sounds Of Infinity: Part II) carries on the aphotic sound, with the vocals sounding extra gloomy whilst the guitars and drums thrum on like a finely tuned machine. The monologue adds a mystique to the track, fitting in well with the aphotic sound of the quadrilogy. Seeking The Cure (Sounds of Infinity: Part III) begins with a keyboard section that eerily sounds like something from a Final Fantasy game mixed in with a dash of post-Tarja Nightwish. The orchestration and guitars make or an interesting blend throughout the track, as do the drums in certain sections. One of the most interesting sections of the song is the bluesy solo. Sounds Of Infinity (Sounds Of Infinity: Part IV) ushers in the end of the album, beginning with a whisper followed by a callous and heavy barrage of guitars, drums and keys. The Gaelic sound parts of the song certainly conjure up one’s inner Celt (or in my case, one’s Scottish and Irish heritage), adding a unique, hypnotic sound to the album. The vocals are mesmerizing and dynamic, enforcing the unique sound of the song, while the guitars and bass are more on the aggressive, inserting some fierce excitement to the track.

I’m not quite sure how to summarise my thoughts on the album into one last paragraph as I’ve never heard an album quite like this. Each track seems to take on a life of its own and tells a different story through the music. Cryptic Age have surpassed so many bands of their genre with this release and have proven themselves, once again, a folkin’ force to be reckoned with. Cryptic Age are definitely one of the finest folk metal bands on the scene and Sounds Of Infinity might just become an influential album on the scene.

5/5

Nico Davidson

Cryptic Age – Eternity Beckons

Posted in CD, Metal with tags , , , , on 24th May 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Band: Cryptic Age
Single: Eternity Beckons (Sounds of Infinity II)
Release date: 18th May 2012
Genre: Power-Folk Metal
Label: Unsigned/Self-Released

Cryptic Age have been a rising star in the UK’s metal scene over this year and they’ve done a lot more in their first year than most bands do, including sharing the stage with big names such as Skyclad and the release of their debut EP Homeland. Recently Cryptic Age were confirmed to play Metalcamp this year. So, it’s come to no surprise that their album Sounds Of Infinity will soon be available and just to tease us a little, they released Eternity Beckons (Part two of the Sounds of Infinity series).

Eternity Beckons starts up with a dark, tense symphonic introduction, in a similar vein to Epica, though much more darker. The guitar riffs are heavier than what I’m used to hearing performed by Cryptic Age, but I’m not complaining since they match up well with the atmosphere of the song. The vocals are beautifully performed, though somewhat haunting, almost siren-like. The narrative part, roughly halfway through, creates a certain enchanting mystique. The drums and bass bounce off each other magnificently through the song, working well with the guitars and the occasional keyboard section.

There’s very few songs that send chills up my spines upon hearing them and Eternity Beckons is now amongst them – Of course, I mean that in the good sense since it’s very rare to find a song of such epic proportions. The song has that unique Cimmerian shade about it that helps add the emotion and beauty to the song. Though the song does stray away from what I’m used to hearing from Cryptic Age, it still is a fine composition and has made me somewhat more impatient to hear the album.

Nico Davidson

Interview: Tom Keeley [Feb 2012]

Posted in Interview with tags , , , , , , , , on 12th February 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Cryptic Age are a York-based folk-power metal band consisting of your members. In the last year, they’ve played several gigs around the UK and have gone onto support acts such as Hecate Enthroned and Skyclad, as well headline our own Valkyrian Festival. With the future looking bright for this young band, Nico catches up with Cryptic Age’s bassist Tom Keeley.

Nico: When did you start learning bass and why?

Tom: Started playing bass when I was about 16. Some mates were big into AC/DC and wanted to start a tribute band and they said I looked a bit like Cliff Williams. So I bought a bass and started learning.

N: How did you become a part of Cryptic Age?

T: I was looking for a band as I had been floating in between bands, nothing special, some dodgy metal bands that were going nowhere. So I saw an ad that looked promising and took it up. I was the first to reply luckily, glad I was.

N: What’s the progress of the upcoming album, Sounds of Infinity?

T: The songs are almost all written, I think we might try for another two, maybe a cover, nothing is set in stone. But the bulk of the song writing is finished and we’re all really happy with the sound and looking forward to recording the new material, it’s going to sound massive! We have about half of the album recorded, songs we’ve had for almost a year. So progress is damn good.

N: Will you be touring when the album is out? If so, will you be touring Scotland as well as England?

T: A tour would be incredible but it all costs money, and with only two of us working it’s difficult to fund for just ourselves. But we certainly have gigs booked in the future, trying to get on some big dates. And we are always looking to play further away from home to spread the word, so Scotland would be great, I’ve heard there’s some fantastic venues in Glasgow.

N: Speaking of touring, which band would you most like tour with?

T: Personally I would love for us to tour with Rhapsody, that would be a dream. But in terms of bands we’ve played with already, I would love to play more with Infernal Creation, they are an awesome live band and the more chances I get to see them the better. Would be going to see them support Fleshgod [Apocalypse] but I already bought tickets for Steve Hughes!

N: Later this month, you’ll be supporting Tyr with your other band, Ravenage. How are you feeling about that?

T: It’s of course a great honour to support such a great band and it’s sure to be fun. Also a special gig for me, but maybe I’ll keep that to myself.

N: It’s still early on in 2012, aside for recording and releasing the new Cryptic Age album, what are your plans for the rest of the year?

T: We don’t really have a plan set out for the year. We had one goal last year that we came close to achieving but got pipped at the last hurdle. Maybe this year we can achieve it. Apart from that I guess the overall goal for the band is to get a label behind us to promote the music and play to larger audiences.

Band Of The Month [October, 2011]: Old Corpse Road

Posted in Band Of The Month with tags , , , , , on 1st October 2011 by Nico Solheim-Davidson


The voting for October’s Band Of The Month began as a fierce competition between The Colour Line and ReVerbed, however, Darlington-based blackened folk metal quintet Old Corpse Road swooped in at the last minute and snatched victory quite unexpectedly gaining the majority of the votes. Old Corpse Road avoid the cliché black metal style of Satanic imagery, instead, their songs are about British folklore with masterfully written music and lyrics. Old Corpse Road have shared the stage with the likes of Hecate Enthroned, Northern Oak, Windrider and Skyclad.

Rating: 5/5

Links:

Official site: http://www.oldcorpseroad.co.uk/
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Old-Corpse-Road/22944789821
Myspace: http://www.myspace.com/oldcorpseroad

Band Of The Month [August, 2011]: Pastel Jack

Posted in Band Of The Month with tags , , , , , , on 3rd August 2011 by Nico Solheim-Davidson

Pastel Jack are the Band of the Month for August 2011, following the results of the poll we did on the official Valkyrian Music Facebook page.
Pastel Jack are a four-piece metal band that hail from Kingston Upon Hull, East Yorkshire. They bring in a lot from their influences, which include Trivium, Alterbridge and Queen. Pastel Jack are well known for their aggressive and catchy hooks, technical drum work and powerful vocals.

They’ve shared the stage with the likes of Sworn Amongst, XIII, Clown Corpse, Skyclad and Violent Deception. They will also be playing at Valkyrian Festival and they have their first full-length album [Trojan Horse] due for release soon.

Band History

Pastel Jack was officially formed in 2007 when Neil Bailey took the place as the bands singer. They spent the next two years working on their sound, honing their skills live and writing.
In 2009 they entered the studio at ‘Silent City Studios’ in Leeds to record their first EP “Ghost in the Machine”
2011 Pastel Jack re-enter the studio to record their debut album “Trojan Horse”.

Pastel Jack – Synergy (Official Video)

Rating: 4/5

Website: http://www.pastel-jack.co.uk/
Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/pasteljackvids
MySpace: http://www.myspace.com/pasteljack
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/pages/Pastel-Jack/7625915799