Monthly Archives maj 2012

Empires of Eden: Channelling the Infinite

Music Buy Mail/Sound Pollution

Aw wow. UDO DIRKSCHNEIDER, ROB ROCK, STEVE GRIMMETT, Mike DiMeo of MASTERPLAN and RIOT fame etc., need more introduction? EMPIRES OF EDEN is the brainchild of Aussie guitarist Stu Marshall, ex. DUNGEON, and a host of world renowned vocalists. So fames there is little information about the rest of the band. This is the sophomore effort, the first, “Reborn in Fire” was well-received and they seem to be going for the throat seriously this time.

First out is a mid-paced effort featuring ROB ROCK. The bass is heavy and the guitars run amok, what more can you ask for. The next track has a patented pipe of UDO filling out the sound picture, I wonder if anyone ever tires of him? “Hammer Down” has all the characteristics of a true heavy metal song...

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Michael Thompson Band: Future Past


MICHAEL THOMPSON is a solid guitar player. An alumnus of Berklee College of Music he has provided his craft for such luminaries as THE SCORPIONS, VINCE NEIL, MICHAEL BOLTON…and even MICHAEL JACKSON. He has also recorded the legend album “How Long”, under the moniker MICHAEL THOMPSON BAND. That very album was re-released about five years ago by Frontiers, and here is the next step. This time around the MICHAEL THOMPSON BAND consists of; vocalist Larry King of SOLEIL MOON, drummer Khan Parker and bass player Alan Berliant.

The basic mood is gentle and caressing. The distortion is moderate and the refrain somewhat faded but still the craftsmanship shines through...

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Departure: Hitch a Ride

Escape/Sound Pollution

Multi-instrumentalist Mike Walsh has been involved with the likes of Dean Fasano, Mark Thompson-Smith, BON JOVI and ALDO NOVA. In 1998 he and DEPARTURE gave us their self-titled debut. Featured were vocalist Ken Michaels and David Rosenthal (RAINBOW, RED DAWN). The band came across as a mix of SAGA, JOURNEY and TOTO, and a follow-up was soon issued. “Open Your Mind” hit the shops a year after, now with vocalist Dave Baldwin. More pomp put them in the direction of KANSAS and STYX. Third outing, “Corporate Wheel” came in 2001, this time with vocalist Timothy Lewis, which was the subject of raving reviews. Now ten years later the fourth installment arrives, and, as seems customary the vocalist is new. Andi Kravljaca of SILENT CALL has filled that position...

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Jack Blades: Rock´n´Roll Ride


Jack Blades is widely known as the talented bass player and vocalist of NIGHT RANGER, who also did well in DAMN YANKEES. He has also collaborated with Tommy Shaw of STYX/DAMN YANKEES, and RINGO STARR. On the lyrics side there is no writing block as he has supplied the likes of OZZY, ALICE COOPER and JOURNEY with stylish material. In 2003 he released a solo album, which I bought, and was a massive success the info says. I was less thrilled as there was preciously little of his usual sun-drenched feel-good rock. Merely the title here says return to home base, but let´s make sure…

Opener “Back in the Game” is not un-missable, but still a good sign compared to the previous solo effort...

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Mixing styles, merging different feelings is quite cool nowadays. The south Swedish Dödaren band even wants to emulate all this trend, with their funky-sleazy postretro-lined metal-mix. The debut album- called Maen came out in the end of April. Surprising success around the world- Jon Solheim drummer answered me.

1. I guess that the first thing what anybody realize is your band name…

Yeah, Dödaren is actually something of a playing with words in Swedish that unfortunately does not translate very well into English. It basically means „the killer” but in Swedish there are different words for this. If you kill someone, you are automatically a murderer, which means you can’t really be a killer...

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Unnecessary to over explain it. Dödren from Göteborg made something new, something unusual giving an incredible mood of music listening by it…

The band’s debut album- called Maen came out in the end of April- surprising the metal-funs, all around the world, collecting appreciative comments also from India and Brazil. But… despite of the success, hard to declare or name Dödaren’s first album’s real style. „Our style is so tricky…”- says the band. The guys in Dödaren see themselves as moving along an undefined dimension of style, and thus lets others do the categorizations. And this is what makes this eight songs so great.
Eric, Martin, Fredrik and Jon have prior to the formation of the group played in several different constellations in genres ranging from the softest blue...

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Maledia – Your angels cry

If you arent familiar with Maledia it’s hardly surprising – these days the internet means there are so many bands competing for our attention that it’s impossible to keep track of them all, and sometimes great bands like Maledia struggle to get noticed among the mediocre bands. Where the internet really does help though is getting a small band attention around the world.

Maledia are an Italian Gothic metal band who date back to 2000 although they only released their debut album ”She and her darkness” in 2010. Now two years later they have just released their second album – ”Your angels cry” via UK based Ravenheart music – a label that’s building a big reputation for itself among fans of female fronted bands with it’s releases by a whole host of lesser-known but very talented bands.


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Highlight Kenosis – Change

Highlight Kenosis are a Romanian band formed in 2008, who have now relocated to Germany. This is their second album, and it was recorded in Sweden at the Blueflame studios in Uppsala.

The album opens with ”Ouverture in D minor” which starts with some voices speaking over some gentle music and then moves into a lovely piece of classical music. A nice start to the album

From here on the album gets down to business with some great catchy guitar-driven songs, many of which remind me of Krypteria.

”Outro…With Angels” reminds me of the theme from the old TV series, Twin Peaks. It’s an absolutely beautiful song and is the highlight of the album for me.

There’s a definite prog feel to the album, but at the same time its still firmly in the rock/metal camp with some really catchy stuff...

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Syd Arthur – On an on

Syd Arthur are a psychadelic/progresssive rock band from Canterbury. If that seems like a strange description then I can only say that it’s a good fit to their music, which has a very unusual sound. There are definite Prog rock influences here, but also psychedelic and folk influences, which all blends together to form a quite gentle but complex sound.

This is certainly a difficult album to review as it does sound so different to most other bands and it’s hard to describe the music as it’s so rich and diverse. The vocals are quite high pitched which isn’t a style I’m usually a fan of but I have to admit that it does work well here...

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Amaranthe, Dynazty and Soen – London 22-05-2012

Tonight’s entertainment at the Garage was ”Spinefarm night” – a gig by three bands signed to Spinefarm records, Amaranthe, Soen and Dynazty. The gig was advertised as an Amaranthe show with the other two bands not being announced till a few weeks before the gig, so inevitably the majority of the crowd were Amaranthe fans, with plenty of their T-shirts being worn.

The night kicked off with Swedish band Dynazty. By the time they came on stage at 8pm the venue was already busy and the temperatures inside were climbing rapidly (well that’s what happens when you have a busy venue on one of our few hot sunny summer days). Right from the start they made a great impression with the crowd and really impressed a lot of people with their brand of rock...

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