Archive for Stockholm

Rockbitch Boat 2014 – day 2

Posted in Festival, Live with tags , , , , , , , , on 24th November 2014 by Pieni

Baltic Sea, somewhere between Riga and Stockholm
9th November 2014

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On Sunday, the boat arrived at Riga’s Tallink ferry terminal at 10:30 in the morning, which in Latvia meant 11:00. As the departure back to Stockholm was scheduled for four-and-a-half hours later, most people went on land to sightsee and get cheaper alcohol. Others, like us, also took the chance to have lunch. Now I wish I could tell you that we sat on a typical Latvian restaurant and had a very local meal, but we came across this flashy American-looking place, with a ‘60s-themed interior design, and we obviously didn’t go any further, ending up having burgers, pizza and Caesar salad. Ah well. photo riga_zps3a3d3d73.jpg

Back on board, the first band would take the Sky Bar stage 18:20 but I was interviewing The End Of Grace around that time, so I missed those blue-ish rockers Trainwreck Remedys. As after the interview I lingered chatting with the TEoG boys, I also missed the “heavier harder melodic hardrock” of Haven, who came next on the same stage. But for BatAAr, who was the other band of this cruise that I REALLY wanted to see, I made sure to be on the front row a few minutes before they hit the Starlight Palace stage, at 20:00. They kicked off with their latest single “Riskbreaker” and for the next half hour they delivered a dazzling mixture of sounds in an enthralling performance.

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 photo inspite_zpsbdfd8eef.jpgThe choices began after BatAAr. Dismissing the Guitar Battle on Sky Bar, I just had to choose between InSpite and Kerbera. And since I was already on Starlight Palace, Kerbera it was. Terrible choice! There was a large number of people way before their gig started, so I thought they’d be good, and so the disappointment was bigger. I don’t know if singer Seike was just having a bad day, but he was constantly going out of tune! Now either people just didn’t care like I did, or that’s really his way of singing, as the crowd was all happy about it… After two songs I was sure it wouldn’t get any better so I gave up and went to the Club Hell stage, where I definitely should have gone in the first place – InSpite were kicking ass up there!

Then I went and indulged my rocker side by attending White Trash Heroes. But I still had time to drop by Sky Bar, where the Guitar Battle was still raging and shoot a couple of pics of Herman Frodit from Skitarg.

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 photo wthd_zps04582458.jpgWhite Trash Heroes is not only the name of a band but also the title of the 5th and last album that Fatal Smile released before splitting up. Which is no coincidence as WTH, the band, was born from the ashes of Fatal Smile, featuring the three members that joined the latter in 2007 – Alx, Blade and Philty. With guitarist Snake, they’ve been performing the songs of the three Fatal Smile albums they’ve played on, but I think my broken Swedish caught a few words about something new coming up. Whatever the case, it was a great show.

Fearless would be on Club Hell for just five more minutes when White Trash Heroes were done on Starlight Palace, so I went straight to Sky Bar to catch the second half of the Black Magic Fools gig – their medieval-folk-meets-heavy-metal is always a treat.

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Between Lizette & and Hellshaker, the first won my vote and there I went back to Starlight Palace. It was running late and Lizette apologized, but I didn’t understand what happened (broken Swedish, remember?). But when it started, it was worth the waiting. And their alternative rock was clearly quite popular among the crowd, which contributed to a very good vibe.

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Pray For Locust was another band that I was eager to check out and it totally paid out. Plus, guitarist Jerry is leaving the band so it felt good being there supporting one of his last shows.

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I wanted to check out Dynazty afterwards, but the whole up-and-down between stages (plus the trip to Stockholm from London, where I’d see Deathstars the night before) was starting to get a toll on me. Not to mention that the following day I had two flights and a 5-hour period between them until I returned home. So I called it a night, leaving also Warthog, Sideburn and Von Trath for another time.

The rating? 5/5, of course!!!

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Text & photos by Renata “Pieni” Lino

Rockbitch Boat 2014 – day 1

Posted in Festival, Live with tags , , , , , , , , on 19th November 2014 by Pieni

Baltic Sea, between Stockholm and Riga
8th November 2014

I believe Rockbitch Boat had her maiden voyage in 2011, but I only joined last year. At the time I didn’t write a report (although you can see pics here), as I thought it wasn’t fair to the bands I couldn’t see. But it’s even less fair to the hardworking management/promoting agents who put up this amazing event not to write about it. So with the promise that there was a lot more to it, I’ll give you a general idea of what I’ve witnessed, making sure I mention even the band that I’ve missed, with links to their Facebook pages so you can check them out just the same. It’s the least I can do.

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There are three stages pumping on this cruise between Stockholm and Riga, with pretty much the same schedules – hence the impossibility of covering all bands. I guess I could have watched just a song or two of each band, but then the review would be quite incomplete and sloppy, so no. Besides, there were a couple of bands I really wanted to see in full – the first and foremost being The End Of Grace, which is probably the only one who I’m reviewing with more detail here. They started on Sky Bar stage at 21:00 – same time as Mojo Madness on Club Hell stage – so even if visual rockers Crestillion kicked off ten minutes before that on Starlight Palace stage (and they surely would have been fun to shoot) I preferred to hang around during the TEoG soundcheck. Their first show had been precisely on that stage, one year ago, so this was kind of special. And the band dressed up to the occasion! Did I mention that this is also a Halloween cruise? Yep, almost everybody is wearing a costume, or a mask – bands included. TEoG went little beyond makeup as they soon realized they wouldn’t stand the heat of performing in a full costume.

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I don’t know if it was for being the first band on that stage, being the guinea pigs for the sound tech, but TEoG experienced lots of audio problems in practically all instruments and all songs… but the attitude was there and the crowd appreciated it, moshing like crazy to prove it (it was early, they were all sober enough, so it was for real). Guitarists Jimmy and Robert climbed on the amps, singer Kriss jumped into the crowd and eventually Jimmy joined him… Like the year before, Seb from Bataar helped them out with the Swedish verses in “Fist Face Bleed”, before the band played for the first time ever a new song, “Final Burden”, from their upcoming debut album. Despite the technical problems, one could see the killer potential of that song.

 photo vapenlicensrbb14_zpsa4a0f217.jpgHanged a bit with the TEoG boys after the show and then had to decide between Frantic Amber, Disregard and Vapenlicens. Went for the latter, as I didn’t know them. Groovy death metal sung in Swedish! As cool as it sounds, and a matching live action! A quick overlook at Spotify and I see they have three albums already. Will make sure to listen to them all when I have the chance.

But as a few friends of mine – including my boss here at Valkyrian – like Frantic Amber, I went back to Sky Bar to take a couple of shots of the girls. On my way there, I saw Black Magic Fools warming up for the next day’s show in a hallway. I remember seeing them doing that last year also, so I guess it’s a tradition by now. photo bmfrbb14_zps5c3ca779.jpg

 photo franticamberrbb14_zps7efd21f6.jpgFrantic Amber were also having tech problems (maybe that stage is cursed…) so their gig got delayed and I actually caught the beginning. But no one seemed to mind the waiting. Pretty enthusiastic crowd!

The next choice was the hardest as I knew and liked all three bands playing around 23:00 – the “clown metal” of Skitarg, the death metal of Monoscream and the glam & sleaze of Rockstars On Mars. Skitarg released a new album early this year (“Tarmageddon”), Monoscream are recording their second album, and Rockstars On Mars have a new drummer, so not even their “recent history” helped me out. Ended up going for the most popular – when you make the reservation for this trip, you must tell which band you’re supporting (or supporting the most, in case you have more than one option). And Skitarg managed more than 130 names! So I thought I should go check them and their crowd out. Since I took a bit to decide, that crowd was already everywhere and I couldn’t get near the stage… But I had fun just the same watching from a distance, as these guys know how to put up a show.

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After that, I just hanged around and socialized – it’s so easy to get happily distracted on this boat! I missed Years Of Falling, Grande, Facebreaker, Defueld, Ave Nova and Intestinal. But since most bands return the following year, maybe I’ll catch them in 2015.

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Text & photos by Renata “Pieni” Lino

Deathstars reveal details on upcoming album The Perfect cult

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , on 11th March 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Swedish industrialist rock band Deathstars will be returning with a huge blast with the release of their highly anticipated upcoming album The Perfect Cult. The album was documented in several studios: drums, guitars and bass were recorded in Bohus Sound Recording, Kungälv Sweden, vocals in Gig Studios in Stockholm, Sweden and keyboards, orchestration and editing was done in Black Syndicate, Stockholm. Mixing was handled by legendary Stefan Glaumann (Rammstein, Within Temptation). For the drum, guitar and bass-production, guitarist/keyboardist Nightmare worked together with Roberto Laghi (Emtombed, In Flames) at Bohus Sound Recording. The Mastering was done by Svante Forsbäck (Volbeat, Rammstein) at Chartmakers, Helsinki, Finland.

Commenting on the theme of the lyrics, vocalist Whiplasher said:

All the tracks are about our lives. Each song is a reflection on a situation or a topic that deals with our experiences, usually from a jet black perspective.

The tracklisting for The Perfect Cult is as follows:

01. Explode
02. Fire Galore
03. All The Devil’s Toys
04. Ghost Reviver
05. The Perfect Cult
06. Asphalt Wings
07. Bodies
08. Temple Of The Insects
09. Track, Crush & Prevail
10. Noise Cuts

Deathstars online:


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DevilDriver premier lyric video for Sail

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , on 3rd March 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Groove metallers DevilDriver premiered the lyric video for their new single Sail, taken from their most recent release Winter Kills, via Metal Hammer. The video can be viewed at this location or down below.

DevilDriver are returning to Europe in Spring 2014 for a headline tour that will bring the legendary Metal institution to major cities on the old continent. Along for the ride are support bands Sylosis and Bleed From Within. The tour will kick off on 27th March in Cologne, Germany.

DevilDrivers’s sixth studio album Winter Kills was released in late August 2013 via Napalm Records and was met with overwhelming praise from fans and critics alike. Winter Kills debuted at position No. 32 at the US Billboard 200 chart and entered numerous charts in Europe (e.g. No. 24 in Germany, No. 26 in Austria, etc.).

DevilDriver European tour dates are as follow:

27.03.14 DE – Cologne / Underground
28.03.14 CH – Fribourg / Fri-Son
29.03.14 CH – Aarau / Kiff
31.03.14 DE – Munich / Backstage
01.04.14 FR – Paris / Le Trabendo
03.04.14 UK – Cardiff / Solus
04.04.14 UK – London / Electric Ballroom
05.04.14 UK – Wolverhampton / Wulfrun Hall
06.04.14 UK – Glasgow / Garage
08.04.14 IR – Dublin / The Academy
09.04.14 UK – Manchester / O2 Academy 2
10.04.14 UK – Southampton / Mo Club
11.04.14 FR – Cambrai / Betiz Fest
12.04.14 DE – Herford / CLub X
13.04.14 DK – Aarhus / VoxHall
15.04.14 SE – Stockholm / Klubben
16.04.14 SE – Gothenburg / Sticky Fingers
17.04.14 SE – Hamburg / Grünspan
18.04.14 BE – Antwerp / Trix

DevilDriver online:


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Dark Funeral confirm 20 Years of Satanic Symphonies special show

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , on 9th January 2014 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

1994 is regarded as an important year for all things black metal in the Nordic hemisphere. In May of that fateful, Dark Funeral became apart of the scene, unleashing the storm that was their debut and legendary self-titled release. For 20 years now, Lord Ahriman and his fellow warriors have successfully spread their satanic anthems around the world infecting the masses with numerous albums and worldwide tours. In 2014, they are still spreading the darkness upon us! A highly anticipated new album is coming up later this year, but first things first:
On 3rd May 2014, Dark Funeral will present you an unforgettable gig offering a very exclusive set spanning their entire catalogue yet with focus on older classics. The band will be fronted by Emperor Magus Caligula. On top of this, former members will make exclusive guest appearances, too. Thus you will see Themgoroth, Typhos, B-Force, Dominion and Gaahnfaust live and onstage for the first time since they left the band. This night will be an absolute must for both old and new fans, so make sure you will be there.

This very special anniversary gig entitled 20 years of Satanic Symphonies will take place at Klubben, Stockholm on May 3rd and tickets can be obtained here at this location.

Dark Funeral online:


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In Solitude announce new album and stream title track; Sister

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , , , on 19th August 2013 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Swedish metallers In Solitude have announced their third studio album, Sister, which will be release in the UK on 30th September via Metal Blade Records. The title track, Sister, is now streaming at this location. Vocalist Pelle Åhman speaks on behalf of In Solitude:

It’s time to release our third album, and things have never felt this clear and pervasive before. This is a feeling that has permeated our whole lives during the latest year of writing and recording this album, as well as digesting and dealing with its consequences. And it has been wonderful, overwhelming and utterly devastating. Which, in the world of In Solitude, are very positive things, and exactly what was required.

It is a very special album for us, and I am very thankful and proud of my brothers (including our great friend, and producer, Martin Konie Ehrencrona), for this is truly the most visceral music we’ve ever made, and we can’t wait for you to experience it too.

You come without. And all falls within. There is a light in the world. There is a stone to the head.

Sister was recorded at Studio Cobra in Stockholm, Sweden during March 2013. The album was produced and mixed by MartinKonieEhrencrona and stands as a logical next step above and beyond its predecessor, The World.The Flesh.The DevilIn Solitude‘s strength resides in their ability to craft dark and oppressive atmospheres within the auditory realm of classic heavy metal.Sister compounds this trademark sound further, beginning with the acoustic intro, He Comes and saturates the record in an aura of uniqueness; see: Lavender and the title track.

The album concludes with an 8-minute, driving, near trance-like opus that features guest guitarist Pelle Forsberg (Watain). Additionally, Jarboe of Swans fame can be heard on Horses in the Ground. Moods range from Mercyful Fate-esque guitar flavors, shadows of Black Sabbath, the heavy dissonance of Swans, to straight-forward, ear worm riffs. In any case, one thing can be said for certain: their delivery is as genuine as it is impressive.

North American fans will have an opportunity to see In Solitude live this Fall. The band will be supporting Watain on their Wild Hunt tour beginning on October 8th in New York City. The tour also features support from Tribulation.

In Solitude online:

CrashDïet – The Savage Playground

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on 23rd January 2013 by Pieni

“The Savage Playground”
Released: 22nd January 2013
Glam/sleaze rock
Released via Gain Records

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You should never assume a certain genre of music belongs to a certain age. The so-called “eighties hair metal” is very much rocking and up-to-date nowadays, at least when it comes down to CrashDïet.

The band has matured in these last couple of years, sounding harder and somewhat more consistent, yet without ever losing its rebellious sleaze grip. There’s also a bigger concern for details, little touches that turn the songs richer but keep them in the straightforward rock path.

For instance, the first single, “Cocaine Cowboys”. As the title itself reveals, it’s a song about that particular addiction, the masters and slaves of it. And as they chose to call the dealers by “cowboys”, the intro is the main riff of the song played in an acoustic guitar, very Old West style. And that repetitive note which “Anarchy” starts with, building expectations up, just like in a riot. Or the piano in “Excited”. Don’t know about you, but I thought these were all priceless.

The opening track, “Change The World”, brings to mind “Riot In Everyone” – the same message of not following political-correct flocks, but the music itself more elaborated, more guitar work, the bass even more present and the beats more diverse. It has single-material stamped all over it.

Not a ballad in any way – this time the boys kept them at bay – but there’s something softer about “California” that makes you think of convertibles driving through long avenues into the California sunset, just like you see in the movies. Mind you that I said “softer”, not “soft”, as the rhythm is still pretty much alive here.

Both “Circus” and “Damaged Kid” keep the rock pumping through and through, but it’s “Drinkin’ Without You” that’s the sleaze rock poster-song, all sleek and loose. “Snakes In Paradise” is also very sleazy, but in a dark kind of way.

And then there’s “Garden Of Babylon”, a track with some of the angriest and, at the same time, most melodic moments of “The Savage Playground”. Despite its more than 7-minute length, something we’re not used to with CrashDïet, I strongly recommend it.

When I reviewed “Generation Wild” almost three years ago, the last line read “The kids of the underground are back and, I dare to say, stronger than ever”. Now that “The Savage Playground” is here, “stronger than ever” takes a whole new meaning.

5 / 5

Renata “Pieni” Lino

M.M.I. release video for "To A Blood Red Sky"

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 2nd December 2012 by Pieni

Stockholm based industrial metal MAN.MACHINE.INDUSTRY have just released a video for the song To A Blood Red Sky, featured on their latest album Lean Back, Relax And Watch The World Burn.

It’s the second video for this album, directed by singer/guitarist J. Bergman himself. The first one, a KILLING JOKE cover of “Eighties”, featured Jens Westin of CORRODED. “To A Blood Red Sky” also has a special guest, this time Ronnie Nyman from ALWAYS WAR. And fifteen fans and friends, who already had their screams recorded in the album.

Sister Sin release video for hit single End Of The Line

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 15th October 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Swedish metallers Sister Sin have released the brand new music video for their hit single End Of The Line, which is taken from their forthcoming album Now and Forever, due for release October 22nd! The video can be viewed below and you can download the track on iTunes and Amazon.

Filmed at an old nuclear reactor testing facility in Stockholm, Sweden, Sister Sinblazes through a raw, gritty and powerful performance that has heads banging and bodies moving worldwide to End Of The Line. Front women Liv Jagrell shows off her fierceness and delivers an incredible vocal performance throughout the song. Lead guitarist Jimmy Hitula electrifies audiences with highly intense and robust riffs alongside the fast hands of heavy-hitting drummer Dave Sundberg and the lively, energetic bassist Strandh.

Don’t miss your chance to see Sister Sin LIVE on tour throughout North America beginning February 2nd. They will be rocking out alongside their idol Doro and taking over the world one city at a time. See the full listing of tour dates here and pre-order their forthcoming album Now and Forever at the Victory Records’ webstore.

Rival Sons UK Tour Starts This Sunday

Posted in News with tags , , , , , , on 9th March 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Californian blues-rockers RIVAL SONS are preparing to kick off a UK tour with none other than Black Stone Cherry this Sunday, March 11th.

The band – who are releasing a special redux edition of their breakthrough album, Pressure & Time, on Monday – will be spending two-and-a-half weeks on the road for their sold out UK tour, before heading on to mainland Europe for a number of headlining shows.

Rival Sons drummer Michael Miley comments: I’m chilling in a cafe listening to some new mixes from our upcoming album, figuring out logistics for the Face of Light video, and looking at final artwork for the Pressure & Time redux out on the 12th.  But most importantly, I’m freaking out excited about the upcoming Black Stone Cherry tour and seeing all our friends in the UK; one of our favorite countries in the world!  See you all soon!


You can see Rival Sons on tour at the following shows:

Mar. 11 – Norwich, UK – UEA
Mar. 12 – Nottingham, UK – Rock City
Mar. 14 – Birmingham, UK – O2 Academy
Mar. 15 – Liverpool, UK – O2 Academy
Mar. 17 – Sheffield, UK – O2 Academy
Mar. 18 – Manchester, UK – Academy
Mar. 19 – Newcastle, UK – O2 Academy
Mar. 21 – Edinburgh, UK – HMV Picture House
Mar. 22 – Aberdeen, UK – Lemontree
Mar. 23 – Inverness, UK – Ironworks
Mar. 24 – Glasgow, UK – O2 Academy
Mar. 26 – Bristol, UK – O2 Academy
Mar. 27 – Southampton, UK – Guildhall
Mar. 28 – London, UK – HMV Forum

Mar. 30 – Hamburg, Germany – Uebel & Gefährlich
Apr. 02 – Stockholm, Sweden – Debaser Medis
Apr. 03 – Oslo, Norway – John Dee
Apr. 04 – Bergen, Norway – Garage
Apr. 06 – Gothenburg, Sweden – Sticky Fingers
Apr. 07 – Copenhagen, Denmark – Vega Small Hall
Apr. 08 – Schijndel, Netherlands – Paaspop Festival
Apr. 09 – Brussels, Belgium – AB Box
Apr. 11 – Paris, France – Fleche D’Or

KATATONIA Studio Update

Posted in News with tags , , , , , on 1st March 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Sweden’s ultimate progressive metal act, Katatonia, has posted a studio update on Facebook to fill fans in on the recording process of the band’s forthcoming full-length record.

Katatonia is currently tracking the follow-up to 2009’s, Night Is The New Day, at Ghost Ward Studios in Stockholm, Sweden with producer, David Castillo. The release is due out later this year on Peaceville Records.

The studio update can be viewed here.

Katatonia online: