Monthly Archives september 2011

Brainstorm: On the Spur of the Moment

AFM/Sound Pollution

Nine albums, plus a live DVD, that is the impressive output of BRAINSTORM since the start in 1989. All three founding members; guitarists Torsten Ihlenfeld and Milan Loncaric plus drummer Dieter Bernert are still in the band. Vocalist Andy B. Franck and bass player Antonio Leva complete the line-up. For more info please see the interview dated a few weeks back. The band specially emphasize that the album was created together producer Axel Heckert of Studio 22 in Ludwigsburg.
They seem that pleased, is it a necessary album to have and to hold?

Well opener “below the Line” ranks among the finest I have heard from the BRAINSTORM…ever. The epic outline and the contagious mid-pace just simply does it for me...

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Uriah Heep: Live in Armenia

Frontiers/Sound Pollution

URIAH HEEP recently turned 40 (in 2009). They may be older than quite a few of their fans,but Messrs.; Bernie Shaw, vocals, Mick Box, guitars, Trevor Bolder, bass, Phil Lanzon, keyboards, and “new boy” Russell Gilbrook, drums seem happier than ever. Many oldie bands have apparent motivational problems, URIAH HEEP played approximately 250 shows on their 2009 tour. One of the nights was spent in Armenia, with hired equipment and other difficulties. But here it is, alive, warts and all.

The joy of the crowd is not to be mistaken, and the Eastern Bloc was once a rescue mission for an ailing band in the late eighties. Now they return triumphant...

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An interview with Cornerstone

Festivalphoto: For anyone who isn` t familiar with Cornerstone, can you tell us a bit about the band including where are you from and when you were formed?

Steve: we have begun to perform cover-Versions of REM, SOUL ASYLUM and THE CURE in the livingroom of Mike’s former girlfriend in 1997 (*laughs*) …that was it. After a time a friend of Mike – Markus Bousska – joined the group, he has played drums, so the band was born, we have started, to write own songs. At the beginning Mike was the leadsinger, but – let me say it this way – there are some things in the band, he can do better than singing…(*laughs*).

Michael: yeah, so a singer joined the band, we have changed the name to “Cornerstone” in 1999, and started to perform...

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An interview with Onslaught

Festivalphoto spoke with Sy Keeler and Andy Rosser-Davies from Onslaught just before their London show on their UK tour.

Festivalphoto: Earlier this year you released your latest album, Sounds of violence. Can you tell us a bit about the album?

Sy: The album in general, or the aftermath, or a bit of both? OK, the album is produced by Jacob Hansen who is a Danish gentleman and he has produced a fantastic album for us. We have how many songs on there?

Andy: Ten originals – eight songs, one outro one re-record and a cover version.

Sy: It was a great working environment – we went to Denmark to record, no distractions, the nearest bar was ten kilometres, not that we drink much anyway...

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Tormenta – Tormented souls

Tormenta are a new band from an area of the world not known for Heavy metal music – they hail from the Maldives. Despite this, these guys certainly know how to make brutal thrash metal.

I’m not sure if this should be called an album or an EP. With only 6 songs and 28 minutes of music, its nowhere near long enough to be an album, but its a bit too long to be an EP – it falls somewhere in between. Even the band seem confused as its referred to as both an album and an EP. I’ll give them the benefit of the doubt and call it a very good value EP.

Right from the start with first track, Judgement, we get screaming/growling guitars, pounding drums and a good solid bass sound – really good thrash. The vocals fit the music well too.

I’d describe the music as old-school thrash – Slayer, Megadeth...

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While Heaven Wept – Fear of infinity

Formerly best known as a doom metal band, While Heaven Wept have moved towards a new more progressive style of metal, and this album see’s little trace of their Doom roots.

One criticism is the length of the album – only 7 songs ! Admittedly, the last song (Finality) is eleven minutes long, but you’re still only looking at 37 minutes of music in total.

I have to be brutally honest and say that I was very disappointed in this album – the songs lack sufficient variation and tend to blur into one another, and there is little here that I’d class as memorable. Certainly a short time after listening to the album none of the songs stick in the mind.

Track Listing:

1. Hour Of Reprisal
2. Destroyer Of Solace
3. Obsessions Now Effigies
4. Unplenitude
5. To Grieve Forever
6. Saturn And Sacrifice

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Ry Cooder – Pull up some dust and sit down

Ry Cooder is a legend of American music having a career that spans over 40 years. He has worked with musicians including Neil Young, Eric Clapton, Warren Zevon, Arlo Guthrie, Catain Beefheart, Randy Newman and the Rolling Stones, and has also won several Grammy awards.
Musically he has a very diverse career spanning blues, folk, rock, country as well as world music, including The Buena Vista Social Club, and has worked with musicians from as far afield as Africa and India.

The album kicks off with a biting satirical look at bankers in ”No banker left behind”. There’s a simple but surprisingly catchy tune to accompany the cutting lyrics – e.g. ”with champagne and shrimp cocktails, and that’s not all you find, there’s a billion dollar bonus, and no banker left behind”.

”Dirty Chateau” look...

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Sabaton – World war live: Battle of the Baltic sea

”World war live: Battle of the Baltic sea” is the first live album from Swedish Power Metal band Sabaton. Having released six studio albums, they have plenty of material to pick from, so the time certainly seems right for a live album from a band who’s live performances are always great. The album was recorded on the Sabaton cruise in 2010.

While Sabaton are naturally addressing the crowd in Swedish here given that the cruise took place in Sweden so most of the crowd will have been Swedish, it’s quite unusual to hear a live album where the talking between songs is in anything other than English, and given that a large percentage of their fans are in English speaking countries, it does seem a slightly odd choice to record a show in Swedish which means that the vast majority of their fans ...

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Mastodon – The Hunter

Hailing from Atlanta, Mastodon are a band who seem to delight in being different. Trying to decribe their music is a challenge in itself – is it Prog metal, Thrash metal, Hard Rock, Stoner rock or something else? The best answer is that it’s a unique blend of all of these musical genres – certainly Prog Metal is the best fit but even that is an inadequate desscription. If you’ve never heard anything by Mastodon before then you’ve defintely missed out – their music is some of the heaviest Prog metal you’ll hear anywhere.

”The Hunter” is the band’s fifth album, and the first since their critically acclaimed album ”Crack the skye”.

There are none of the epically long songs that we’ve seen on previous albums – several of which have featured songs over 10 minutes long, and I think that does ...

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Intervju Massdistraction, vinnare till Unreleased, Live and Unsigned

Det hårda och energi rika trash metal bandet Massdistraction tog hem segern i Unreleased och går därför vidare till finalen som äger rum i Stockholm den 17e december.

Hur känner ni er?

Det är en väldigt skön känsla, nästan lite för bra för att vara sann.

Hur ska ni fira detta?

Det blir en hel del alkohol hela natten lång förutom Jon (gitarristen) som ska på barnkalas dagen efter! Man måste ju föregå med gott exempel.

Hur kommer ni att förberedda er inför finalen?

Vi kommer att försöka boka så många spelningar som möjligt så att vi får mer erfarenhet, man kan bara bli bättre och utvecklas hela tiden. Spela mycket!

(Sångaren Mikkjal ska flytta tillbaka till Färöa...

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