Hellfest 2014 May | 2011 |

Archive for 05/23/2011

Gamma Ray – Skeletons & Majesties EP (2011)

Kai Haisen’s mega monster Gamma Ray returns with what we can call an update in what the band is doing now, a mini album composed by four tracks a bonus track and three different song versions, Skeletons and Majesties show the progress of Gamma Ray without leaving of course their power metal pioneers signature that is left in every work that the band had put out.

After 20 years out rolling Gamma Ray presents on Skeletons and Majesties a fun EP album that keep up with the humor that the band has, with a satyric open track titled Skeletons and Majesties that rants on political practices but that would never put Gamma Ray among political bands in the contrary they make fun of politics. Continuing with Brothers a new anthem about love for heavy metal and its importance as social current for some of us. Send Me A Sign is a great catchy song recreated in blues form that fits great with metallic riffs and that is part of Gamma Ray‘s humor. Rebellion In Dreamland is an acoustic ballad that it shows the musical diversity that the band has. Wannabees is a more modern sound track that still within power metal territory but that take its influence from European electronic music. The rest of the EP is full with different versions of tracks and closing with a Karaoke version of Rebellion In Dreamland with only backing vocals perfect for Haisen’s wannabees on metal monday nights. Overall the EP is just a taste of the fun that Haisen and company have doing power metal in different levels.

Power Tracks : Stand Your Ground, Brothers, Send Me a Sign

Slow Tracks : Rebellion In Dreamland, Wannabees

Track Listing:

1. Stand Your Ground
2. Brothers
3. Send Me a Sign
4. Rebellion In Dreamland
5. Wannabees
6. Brothers (extended)
7. Rebellion In Dreamland (karaoke version)

Arsonists Get All The Girls – Motherland (2011)

The Arsonists returned with Motherland a more mature album that its predecessor Portals, and the changes are significative. With the inclusion of more keyboards in a continuing experimental process that its beginning to give fruits. Motherland is their sophomore album with Century Media and a new chapter in AGATG career, with a more technical approach within the Deathcore scene, that clearly breaks apart from what other bands are doing and positioned the band in a whole new level.

The album’s highlights are Gooseknuckle a technical track that step on uncharted land and give proof of the band’s intent in this album of develop something different, continuing with It Was A Memory a very melodic and well structured song that shows a mature musical level. The next track Waiting For The War To Die makes use of a great keyboard sequence that sync perfectly with the guitar’s speed. West Cliff and Temptest are tracks that pushed the drums to the limit with a great use of keyboard melodic base in the background this tracks are another proof of how the AGATG are getting in top of their game while experimenting new combinations, Our Super Symmetry defines what this album is all about, a superior symmetry of sound that implies the musical growing of the band and their status as pioneers in the realm of technical deathcore metal.

Power Tracks:  Our Super Symmetry, It Was A Memory, Waiting For The War To Die, West Cliff, Temptest.

Slow Tracks: Gooseknuckle, Neck Of The Contrast, Dr Teeth, Woebegone.

Track List:

1. Rise to Fall
2. Neck of the Contrast
3. Gooseknuckle
4. It Was a Memoir
5. Dr. Teeth
6. Avdotya
7. Waiting for the War to Die
8. West Cliffs
9. Hemlock Like This
10. Woebegone
11. Our Super Symmetry
12. Will Someone Please Turn Down the Ocean?
13. Tempest


HELL-Human Remains (2011)

If Dante’s Divine Comedy would ever have a soundtrack, the Inferno chapter would be dedicated to the entire Human Remains album by British NWOHM band HELL. They rocked hard back in the 80′s but with the falling apart of their label and the suicide of their original guitar player and singer David Halliday the band just fell off the grid. But now they are back, and with the help of producer and guitar player Andy Sneap who was contacted by the reunited band to re-record their old material, and Andy as an old fan of the band didn’t turn out the gig, he produced the album and even joined the band as guitar player, and with the inclusion of David Bower on vocals the band recorded Human Remains.

the album from the beginning presents itself with a dark aura and a chilling sound as the devil himself were playing each instrument, tracks like On Earth As It Is In Hell, Plague And Fyre and The Devil’s Deadly Weapon are proof of that. with an occultist touch and the adding of very disturbing clips that gave the album that Dante’s essence, which could be admired in songs like Macbeth, Blasphemy and the Master and The Quest made this trip to HELL even hotter. But the track that got my attention the most was; Save Us From Those Who Would Save Us, a slap in the face to the Catholic church in the subject of child abuse by priests.

Besides the devilish contents mentioned above, the theatrical voice of David Bower gave the album a powerful touch to the album and the guitar work of Snaps is really impressive. Human Remains could be considered one of the best releases this year so far, and HELL could be easily the coming back band of 2011.

Power Tracks: Save Us From Those Who Would Save Us, Blasphemy and the Master, The Devil’s Deadly Weapon, On Earth As It Is In Hell, The Oppressors

Slow Tracks: Macbeth, No Martyrs Cage

Track Listing:
01. Overture Themes From Deathsquad 1:14
02. On Earth As It Is In Hell 5:09
03. Plague And Fyre 5:09
04. The Oppressors 5:53
05. Blasphemy And The Master 8:11
06. Let Battle Commence 4:23
07. The Devils Deadly Weapon 10:14
08. The Quest 4:21
09. Macbeth 7:21
10. Save Us From Those Who Would Save Us 5:05
11. No Martyrs Cage 9:00

Russell Allen of Symphony X checked in with The Age Of Metal

It had been 3 years since last time I saw Symphony X, and that time they blew my mind, so this time I was very curious about their new material, plus by the time the announcement of the tour happened it also included Nevermore and Soilwork, but they dropped out of the tour unfortunately letting Symphony X with Blackguard and Powerglove as openers, despising that I went down to the Marquee Theater in Tempe AZ to check them out.

The band opened with Of Sins And Shadows out of their 1997 The Divine Wings Of Tragedy, followed by Domination and Serpent’s Kiss out of their latest album Paradise Lost, then it was time for something new, The End Of Innocence the new single of their upcoming album Iconoclast let everyone want more, but instead Symphony X went back on time to Smoke and Mirrors out of their 1998 Twilight Of Olympus, and then back to Paradise Lost to with the album’s self titled track and Eve of Seduction, then a new advance of Iconoclast was presented under the name of Dehumanized, and closing with a everyone’s favorite Set the World On Fire (The Lie Of Lies).

As encore the band played one of their longest masterpieces The Odyssey out of their 2002 album with the same name.

The Age Of Metal had the fortune to talk with Russell Allen vocalist of the band, about their current tour, the new album, the production process and the general state of progressive metal today, and this is what he told us:

How has been the tour so far?

What can you tell us something about the concept of Iconoclast?

It’s been 3 years since Symphony X released Paradise Lost, What the band has been doing since then?

How was the process of working with Michael Romeo as full producer?

I heard that Symphony X is preparing a DVD, how is that coming along?

How you see the Progressive metal scene today compare to when Symphony X started?

How was the experience of working with Arjen Lucassen on Star One?

What is next for Symphony X?


Sabaton talked to The Age Of Metal

On May 3rd the Clubhouse in Tempe AZ became a war zone, as Swedish metallers Sabaton unleashed all their artillery at the venue during their second headline show in their first North American tour, there a handful full of brave soldiers sung along their favorite warfare tunes interpreted by the band.

Their show was amazing, even though it was not a whole lot of people but it was the right people and the band was really grateful of it, they played tracks from Coat of Arms, Attero Dominatus, The Art Of War and Primo Victoria. Overall it was an amazing show and a great set list, definitely would see them again in fall when they comeback with Evergrey.

Sabaton at The Clubhouse/Tempe, AZ. May 3 2011

Ghost Division


White Death

Cliff Of Gallipoli



Into The Fire

Attero Dominatus

Panzer Battalion


Coat of Arms

Primo Victoria

Previous to the show The Age Of Metal had the privilege to talk to Sabaton’s Guitar Players: Rikard Sunden and Oskar Montelius about their tour, their latest album and of course WARFARE. This is what they told us.

So how it’s been the tour so far?

Can you tell us what is the concept of Coat Of Arms, your latest album?

what inspire you to write about WWI & WWII?

At the beginning of the year you guys visit Auschwitz, how was that experience and if would be part of a next album?

Have you guys ever been in the military? and if you did, is that experience reflected in Sabaton’s lyrics?

How came to mind the concept of the “uprising” video clip? and how was the experience to work with actor Peter Stomare?

What is next for Sabaton?

Leaves Eyes – Meredead (2011)

Achieve epicness and beauty in an album is not easy these days, but Leaves Eyes have done it. Meredead can be considered the most epic album that the band had put out so far, opening with Spirit’s Masquerade a song which sound and structure transports you to a fantasy land, followed by Etain a track that count with the guess vocals by Maite Itoiz (Elfenthal) and could be described it as a walk for the norwegian forests in a winter afternoon. Continuing with Velvet Heart a song with the power of put you in a 17th century ballroom, followed by Krakevisa which is a traditional Norwegian folk song that Liv Kristine sings at duo with Anette Gulbrandsen (Nattsol), the next track is To France a song with a very English touch that tap on that old medieval rivalry  between English and French a very epic track indeed.

The album title track Meredead is an awesome folk song that have the heaviness and beauty that just Liv Kristine and Maite Itoiz of (Elfenthal) gave to it, followed by Sigrlinn a very powerful track that besides of being the only track in the album that feature Alex guttural voice it also feature a special collaboration by Liv Kristine’s younger sister Carmen Elise Espanaes (Midnattsol) the whole track is a trip to a place of fantasy and beauty.

Continue with Mine Taror Er Ei Grimme is a great vocal song that shows why Liv Kristine is without doubt one of the best female vocalists out there, the next track is Empty Horizon an awesome ballad that reminiscence Leaves Eyes first album Lovelorn, closing the album is Tell-Tale Eyes an epic folky anthem that features John Kelly (Elfenthal) and that reclaims blood and the punishments of enemies, a statement that fits what Leaves Eyes proposed on this album. Overall Meredead is a huge step on Leaves Eyes career that shows the grow and maturity of a band that have made a name in the international metal scene by themselves, and in a sense is a return to the roots of the band and to that epic folk sound of their first albums.