Metal And Hard Rock Musicians React To The Death Of Amy Winehouse

Hard rock and heavy metal musicians around the world are mourning the loss of Amy Winehouse.

The 27 year-old singer was found dead in her London apartment at 4:05 p.m. GMT. There’s no word on the exact cause of death, but Winehouse had been struggling with drug addiction for many years.

Ted Nugent: “B sure to tell ur children that Amy Winehouse suicide is insane stupid”

Brian Fair (SHADOWS FALL): “Heard Amy Winehouse died today. I once ran into her in a hotel lobby in London. It was 7am. I was heading out to the airport she was just coming in like a trainwreck. She grabbed my hair and was like ‘I fuckin love ur hair.’ With spittle flying. I thought she was a homeless person. I brushed her off and went and washed my hair. RIP.”

Myles Kennedy (ALTER BRIDGE, SLASH): “It’s just my opinion but Amy Winehouse was a very rare talent. So many songs left unsung. Heartbreaking news.”

Rikki Rockett (POISON): “Amy Winehouse – So sad. Condolences to her closest friends and family. Fame does not give you happiness. It’s a shame Amy couldn’t see the part that surpasses that. The part that she earned and that no tabloid could mar or any critic could ever take away.”

Nikki Sixx (MÖTLEY CRÜE): “Drugs suck. How much clearer does the message have to be? R.I.P. Amy Winehouse

Tommy Lee (MÖTLEY CRÜE): “Amy Winehouse died. That’s a lifestyle choice. The 87 who were murdered in Oslo Norway. That’s fucking tragic.”

Sebastian Bach (ex-SKID ROW): “Dear Amy W, it is a rough crazy business & there is nothing like being on stage. Once u feel that, nothing else compares. Your pain is gone RIP”

Glenn Hughes (BLACK COUNTRY COMMUNION, DEEP PURPLE): “So sad to hear the news of Soul Sister Amy Winehouse… my heart goes out to her family…Addiction is cunning, baffling and Powerful… GH

Dave Navarro (JANE’S ADDICTION) “My God! So sad to hear about Amy Winehouse! My deepest condolences to her friends and family and fans. You will be missed Amy xoxox”

Dave Mustaine (MEGADETH) “Amy Winehouse…RIP. I wish you would have said yes, yes, yes. We will miss you.”

Alex Skolnick (TESTAMENT) “27=too young to go. It’s one thing w legends from another era. But when it happens to someone current, it’s freaky, esp. if you’re over 27.”

Billy Corgan (SMASHING PUMPKINS) “Sad to hear about Amy Winehouse. I mourn any time one of our own passes on. A tragedy…no doubt. Truly sad.”

Zakk Wylde (BLACK LABEL SOCIETY): “Amy Winehouse Just Passed away… She could Fn Sing.. GOD BLESS ?TBLO?”

Eric Avery (ex-JANE’S ADDICTION) “Another tragedy. The spectacular demise of a very talented woman is finished. Amy Winehouse found dead in her London flat.”

taken from Blabbermouth

New Beavis And Butthead Preview Of Holy Cornholio From Comic-Con 2011

A new Beavis and Butthead preview from Comic Con 2011 has been posted online. The preview features scenes from a new “Holy Cornholio” episode, including the pair mocking Jersey Shore. It will be the first new Beavis and Butthead cartoon produced for an MTV series run in 14 years and is expected to return in October 2011.

New Heavy Metal CD Releases: July 19, 2011

Here are the new heavy metal CD releases for this week.

Ave Maria – Chapter One (AAP)
Avichi – The Devil’s Fractal (Profound Lore)
Chelsea Grin – My Damnation (Artery)
Crown The Lost – Cold Pestilent Hope (Gas Can)
Demonical – Death Infernal (Cyclone Empire/Metal Blade)
Disma – Towards The Megalith (Profound Lore)
Dying Fetus – History Repeats EP (Relapse)
40 Watt Sun – The Inside Room (Cyclone Empire/Metal Blade)
The Greenery – Spit & Argue (Prosthetic)
Hail Hornet – Disperse The Curse (Relapse)
I Am Abomination – Passion Of The Heist EP (Good Fight)
It Prevails – Stroma (Mediaskare)
The Konsortium – The Konsortium (Agonia)
Pestilence – Doctrine (Mascot)
Ringworm – Scars (Victory)
Sarabante – Remnants (Southern Lord)
Toxic Holocaust – Conjure and Command (Relapse)

Man Gets Sick Benefits For Heavy Metal Addiction

A Swedish heavy metal fan has had his musical preferences officially classified as a disability. The results of a psychological analysis enable the metal lover to supplement his income with state benefits.

Roger Tullgren, 42, from Hässleholm in southern Sweden has just started working part time as a dishwasher at a local restaurant.

Because heavy metal dominates so many aspects of his life, the Employment Service has agreed to pay part of Tullgren’s salary. His new boss meanwhile has given him a special dispensation to play loud music at work.

“I have been trying for ten years to get this classified as a handicap,” Tullgren told The Local.

“I spoke to three psychologists and they finally agreed that I needed this to avoid being discriminated against.”

Roger Tullgren first developed an interest in heavy metal when his older brother came home with a Black Sabbath album in 1971.

Since then little else has mattered for the 42-year-old, who has long black hair, a collection of tattoos and wears skull and crossbones jewelry.

The ageing rocker claims to have attended almost three hundred shows last year, often skipping work in the process.

Eventually his last employer tired of his absences and Tullgren was left jobless and reliant on welfare handouts.

But his sessions with the occupational psychologists led to a solution of sorts: Tullgren signed a piece of paper on which his heavy metal lifestyle was classified as a disability, an assessment that entitles him to a wage supplement from the job centre.

“I signed a form saying: ‘Roger feels compelled to show his heavy metal style. This puts him in a difficult situation on the labour market. Therefore he needs extra financial help’. So now I can turn up at a job interview dressed in my normal clothes and just hand the interviewers this piece of paper,” he said.

The manager at his new workplace allows him to go to concerts as long as he makes up for lost time at a later point. He is also allowed to dress as he likes and listen to heavy metal while washing up.

“But not too loud when there are guests,” he said.

The Local spoke to an occupational psychologist in Stockolm, who admitted to being baffled by the decision.

“I think it’s extremely strange. Unless there is an underlying diagnosis it is absolutely unbelievable that the job centre would pay pay out.

“If somebody has a gambling addiction, we don’t send them down to the racetrack. We try to cure the addiction, not encourage it,” he said.

Henrietta Stein, deputy employment director for the Skåne region, is also puzzled by the move; “an interest in music” is not usually sufficient to qualify for wage benefits.

“Certain cases are confidential but in general there is always a medical reason that is well-documented,” she said.

Tullgren currently plays bass and guitar in two rock bands and says that he tends to get a lot of positive reactions for daring to be himself.

“Some might say that I should grow up and learn to listen to other types of music but I can’t. Heavy metal is my lifestyle,” he said.

original article

Anthrax ‘Worship Music’ Artwork Unveiled

The long drought is officially over. For all of those ANTHRAX fans who have been waiting for the band to finally release new music, “Fight ’em ‘Til You Can’t”, the first track available from the upcoming album “Worship Music”, has just gone on sale at iTunes. “Worship Music” is the first new studio album from ANTHRAX in eight years, and the first with vocalist Joey Belladonna since 1990’s “Persistence of Time”. What a way for the band to celebrate its 30th anniversary.

New Heavy Metal CD Releases: July 12, 2011

Here are the new heavy metal CD releases for this week.

Aurvandil – Yearning (Eisenwald)
Baring Teeth – Atrophy (Willowtip)
Cannabis Corpse – Beneath Grow Lights Thou Shalt Rise (Tankcrimes)
Decapitated – Carnival Is Forever (Nuclear Blast)
Dischord – Casualties Of War (Diminished Fifth)
Earth Crisis – Neutralize The Threat (Century Media)
Fair To Midland – Arrows and Anchors (eOne)
The Great Commission – Heavy Worship (Ain’t No Grave)
Hekate – Die Welt Der Dunklen Gärten (Prophecy)
Icon In Me – Head Break Solution (Goomba)
In The Nursery – Blind Sound (Plastic Head)
Isis – Live IV: Selections 2001 – 2005 (Ipecac)
Isolation – Closing A Circle (Eisenwald)
J.D. Overdrive – Sex, Whiskey & Southern Blood (Metal Mind)
The Living Fields – Running Out Of Daylight (Candlelight)
Lock Up – Necropolis Transparent (Nuclear Blast)
Mayan – Quarterpast (Nuclear Blast)
Megadeth – Peace Sells…But Who’s Buying Re-Release (Capitol)
NeraNature – Foresting Wounds (Metal Mind)
Rhapsody Of Fire – From Chaos To Eternity (Nuclear Blast)
Sepultura – Kairos (Nuclear Blast)
Sleeping Giant – Kingdom Days In An Evil Age (Ain’t No Grave)
Sol Invictus – The Cruellest Month (Prophecy)
Spellcaster – Under The Spell (Heavy Artillery)
SSS – Problems To The Answer (Earache)
Suicide Silence – The Black Crown (Century Media)

Mastodon Cover Art Work For ‘The Hunter’

The cover artwork for “The Hunter”, the new album from Atlanta progressive metallers MASTODON, can be seen below. The CD, tentatively due in October via Reprise Records, will contain the following tracks, among others:

* Blasteroids
* The Octopus Has No Friends
* Stargasm
* Curl Of The Burl
* All The Heavy Lifting
* The Sparrow
* The Ruiner

New Heavy Metal CD Releases: July 5, 2011

Here are the new heavy metal CD releases for this week.

Draconian – A Rose For The Apocalypse (Napalm)
Exhumed – All Guts, No Glory (Relapse)
Harm’s Way – Isolation (Closed Casket)
Intensus – Intensus (Metal Blade)
Morta Skuld – Through The Eyes Of Death : The Early Demos (Relapse)
Murder Death Kill – Instigate Infiltrate Annihilate (Mediaskare)
Shadowside – Inner Monster Out (SHP)
Stream Of Passion – Darker Days (Napalm)
Unearth – Darkness In The Light (Metal Blade)
Whitehorse – Progression (At A Loss)

New Heavy Metal CD Releases: June 28, 2011

Here are the new heavy metal CD releases for this week.

The Android Meme – Ordo AB Chao (Magna Carta)
Bohren and der Club of Gore – Beileid (Ipecac)
Burn Halo – Up From The Ashes (Rawkhead)
Degradead – A World Destroyer (Metalville)
Evan Brewer (The Faceless) – Alone (Sumerian)
Faces Of Bayon – Heart Of The Fire (Ragnarok)
The Francesco Artusato Project – Chaos and The Primordial (Sumerian)
Fullforce – One (SPV)
Futur Skullz –Futur Skullz (Kemado)
Isis – Live III: 12.17.04 (Ipecac)
Misguided Aggression – Flood The Common Ground (Year Of The Sun)
Moon – Caduceus Chalice (Moribund)
Mortualia – Mortualia (Moribund)
Queensryche – Dedicated To Chaos (Roadrunner)
Riverside – Memories In My Head (The Lasers Edge)
Seven Witches – Call Upon The Wicked (FrostBytes)
Shraphead – Blind & Seduced (Metalville)

Ozzy Osbourne Forced To Cancel Graspop Metal Meeting Performance

Legendary heavy metal singer Ozzy Osbourne has been forced to cancel Saturday evening’s (June 25) performance at Graspop Metal Meeting in Dessel, Belgium. According to an official statement posted at Osbourne‘s web site, “Ozzy has severe laryngitis and his doctor has ordered an immediate 72 hours vocal rest before further evaluation.”

Commented Ozzy: “I was so looking forward to performing at the legendary Graspop Metal Meeting. It really pains me to let people down and it is with great disappointment that I am unable to perform for the great fans of Belgium.”

The Making of….A Death Metal Video?

We all know that metal videos are usually pretty piss poor. There are, of course, exceptions to the rule, but one particular avenue of metal that almost always releases garbage, is death metal bands. The latest victim to the tired “stand still and headbang profusely in an abandoned locale” is Victory Record’s Jungle Rot. Make no mistake, this band is killer and I am looking forward to hearing this release, but Victory’s latest promo item: the making of Jungle Rot’s video for “Rise Up and Revolt,” is possibly the most un-necessary piece of promo material I have ever received. What could possibly go into a behind the scenes video? A close up of the band members getting make up? Actually…yes, that’s exactly what happens, along with heavy doses of headbanging. Watch and learn the inner magic of the death metal video!


All Metal Resource

New Heavy Metal CD Releases: June 21, 2011

Here are the new heavy metal CD releases for this week.

August Burns Red – Leveler (Solid State)
The Black Dahlia Murder – Ritual (Metal Blade)
The Crimson Armada – Conviction (Artery)
Death – Human Re-Release (Relapse)
Dekapitator – We Will Destroy, You Will Obey Re-Release (Relapse)
Devin Townsend Project – Deconstruction (Inside Out)
Devin Townsend Project – Ghost (Inside Out)
Ed Gein – Bad Luck (Black Market Activities)
Elitist – Fear In A Handful Of Dust (Season Of Mist)
Fit For An Autopsy – The Process of Human Extermination (Black Market Activities)
In Flames – Sounds Of A Playground Fading (Century Media)
General Surgery – Necrology Re-Release (Relapse)
Gentleman’s Pistols – At Her Majesty’s Pleasure (Rise Above)
Helms Alee – Weatherhead (Hydra Head)
Jungle Rot – Kill On Command (Victory)
Night Ranger – Somewhere In California (Frontiers)
Pain – You Only Live Twice (Nuclear Blast)
Planks – The Darkest of Grays/Solicit to Fall (Southern Lord)
Seven Sisters of Sleep – Seven Sisters of Sleep (Southern Lord)
S.O.S. – I Owe You Nothing EP (Good Fight)
Sourvein – Black Fang (Candlelight)
Symphony X – Iconoclast (Nuclear Blast)
Vanna – And They Came Bearing Bones (Artery)
Voivod – Warriors Of Ice Live (Sonic Unyon)
White Wizzard – Flying Tigers (Earache)
Wolverine – Communication Lost (Candlelight)
Xibalba – Madre Mia Gracias Por Los Dias (Southern Lord)

1980′s – The Endangered Decade of Heavy Metal

Once upon a time, the 1980′s were hailed as the golden years of heavy metal, with some of the era still maintaining that faith. Every major sub-genre of metal found it’s mark in the 80′s, far more than any other era in metal, yet it seems like the newer generation of metal fans completely ignore their past, or write it off as a simple building block for the current field of up and comers. Am I the only one who has a problem with eliminating an entire decade of groundbreaking metal, that is still the embodiment of what we listen to today?

Quarthon – Bathory

I’m no old codger who often spends his days recollecting on the glory days of metal, I am in the thick of things just as the next guy, enjoying all the new material coming out month after month. Progression in metal is what fans live for, and there’s nothing wrong with that, however, understanding our roots, and appreciating it, are critically important to the enjoyment output of the modern era. Truth be told though, as the years roll on by, and new fans are established, the connection to our roots gets more distant, and more faint. No longer do we compare great new death metal acts to those from the 80′s (unless they still make music), but instead we compare them to acts from the 90′s, and even later. When we have an old school retro band come up, most fans are limited to comparisons like Iron Maiden, Motorhead and Judas Priest, while ignoring the hundreds of other bands that were a part of the NWOB HM, as well as the various scenes in America. I’ve even heard that bands like Black Sabbath and Judas Priest are hard rock, along the lines of AC/DC, and not metal, because they aren’t heavy enough. Crazy right? Well go ask some of the 16 year olds going to shows, and they’ll likely echo the same sentiment.


I didn’t spend my adolescent years and early adulthood in the 80′s, so I didn’t experience the scene as some did, but even during my era, when I first started getting into metal, it was essential that if you were going to delve into the world of real metal, you needed to establish yourself with the classics in order to properly understand what metal really was. This is no longer the case. Kids now, in the post nu-metal and metalcore era, are in a world were the classics are what they listened to when they first started with mainstream crossover acts like Shadows Fall, Killswitch Engage and the melo death scene in Sweden. Make no mistake, there are classics of 10-15 years ago, unmistakably, but even these acts were inspired by the first generations of metal, and if you asked all of those guys, they I’m sure would undoubtedly make their own recommendations of their favorite records from the 80′s, because that’s where everything started.

These days, when someone refers to “80′s metal,” it’s often derogatory, to make fun of a clean, old school falsetto vocals, or shredding tactics by guitarists. I understand this old school sound was driven into the ground for years, but this style also contains some of the best arrangements in metal, that very few artists have matched since in terms of uniqueness and power.

Again, I don’t want to be the old fart saying all the new music sucks,  because if I did that, this blog would suck and would be re-dubbed, and fuck if I want to be called that. With every storied canon though, no matter what the subject matter may be, it’s necessary to know the whole story to understand what paths may arise in the future. Foundations are everything, and the metal of the 80′s needs to be recognized and respected.


(BTW Loudness still fucking rocks:

All Metal Resource

Ever Forthright – Unstable Addition to the Djent Sound

Featuring ex-Periphery and Haunted Shores frontman Chris Barretto, Ever Forthright is perhaps the most unstable (aka “experimental”) of his choice acts. Having released one self titled full length in 2009, and 4 new tracks via Soundcloud, Ever Forthright are, by and far, the most progressive of any djent band I have heard thus far…hell, they are more progressive than most metal acts this year, which has left me quite taken aback by this discovery, but not really shocked based on the talented musicians and projects that Mr. Barretto surrounds himself with. Combining the crazy hot and cold transitions of Between the Buried and Me, with some Dillinger Escape Plan, Animals As Leaders and of course, the trademark Meshuggah sound (though, I’d take these guys over Meshuggah anyday of the week), Ever Forthright, are set to begin their reign.

All Metal Resource

Review: Deadlock – Bizarro World (2011)

Pop music is all relative. Pop music is considered the shenanigan of the mainstream music world; i.e. a gigantic blunder that few give any real credence to. What many fail to realize though, is that pop music is merely a direct focus on melody and hooks, with few other requirements to fall under it’s guise. Few metalheads will admit that some of the greatest singers and song writers of the last 100 years would fall under the moniker of “pop music,” because it flies in the face of their image of the spirited downtrodden outcasts of the music world. However, the great thing about metal (and perhaps it’s greatest irony), is that despite it’s continuous shunning of mainstream concepts by it’s audience, the musicians continue to be true artists, by adopting new ideas that might not otherwise be a part of the scene. This is what makes metal an ever-growing, progressive movement, and realistically, the longest lasting rock music scene that has never truly seen a downturn. Now, outsteps Germany’s Deadlock, and their latest album Bizarro World which combines Euro pop electronica, Gothenburg/American styled melo death, and the greatest aspect of the album and band, the marvelous pop vocals Sabine Scherer. This album has aggression and overall metal attitude, but make no mistake, this is a pop album at heart, and it’s brilliant.

There will be a segment, as always, that will shun Bizarro World out of sheer reaction, but this is an album that reaches far being the well-worn path of melo-death to achieve such creative, melodic songwriting, that it’s hard to imagine the scene existing before this. There will also be a segment of the population that refuses to acknowledges just how monumental this album is, and that’s fine, after all this is all a matter of taste, right? Well, there’s a part of me that cannot acknowledge how one can ignore the mind blowing capabilities of this band, that are literally throttling themselves so as to allow the sensibilities of the pop music to breathe, and not stifle it into yet another tech death album. Deadlock are a VERY accomplished, tight unit that doesn’t write good music by happenstance, but rather a pre-ordained brilliance, that if executed without a metallic shell, would be amongst the great albums of mainstream music, no doubt.

This, despite not being metal beyond it’s convenient shell, will never be an accepted tradition, until metal fans get over their tragic ignorance of pop music, and that’s fine, because it allows true music fans to bask in it’s greatness without having to trifle with ignorance. If you don’t like Bizarro World, that’s fine, but don’t like it on it’s merits (or lackthereof), not because of it’s style.


Similar Artists: Delain, Lacuna Coil, The Gathering, Omnium Gatherum, Scar Symmetry

1.     Virus Jones
2.     State Of Decay
3.     Falling Skywards
4.     Earthlings
5.     You Left Me Dead
6.     Brutal Romance
7.     Alienation
8.     Renegade
9.     Htrae
10.     Bizarro World
11.     Paranoia Extravaganza

Tobias Graf     Drums
Sebastian Reichl     Guitars, Keyboards
Johannes Prem     Vocals
Gert Rymen     Guitars
Sabine Scherer     Vocals
John Gahlert     Bass

Lifeforce Records

All Metal Resource

New Mastodon Album to be Called “The Hunter”

I saw this bit of news yesterday while I was at work and figured it would get written up on some other sites. For whatever reason this has really flown under the radar, so I guess I’ll just unleash it on the AMR world.

In a recent interview with MTV Germany, Bill and Brann from Mastodon revealed that they’ve finished recording the album and it’s called The Hunter. Back in December Brent’s brother died in a hunting accident, and it was revealed that there would be a song about it. Now it appears the album title commemorates this, and if you’re a fan of Mastodon at all you know this isn’t out of the ordinary. Crack the Skye was about Brann’s sister Skye, who committed suicide as a teenager.

Also revealed was that there are 15 tracks recorded, and none of them are ten and a half minute epics like on Crack the Skye. This album took less time to record and is much simpler; it’s already been compared by Brent to Leviathan.

So there you have it. A new, simpler Mastodon album that’s less prog-tastic called The Hunter should be dropping sometime in the Fall.

All Metal Resource

AMR Exclusive Interview with deafheaven’s George Clarke

Today I had the lovely honor of speaking with George Clarke, the vocalist from deafheaven, over the phone. In our lengthy interview, we covered the history of the band, the rise of shoegaze/post black metal, physical appearances in black metal, piracy in music, and much more.

Matt: Hey George, it’s Matt. First, thanks for speaking with me.

George: Yeah man, any time.

Matt: Could you just first explain how the band formed and what the initial sound was that you guys were going for?

George: Yeah, our guitar player Kerry and I were living together and honestly we were playing in some other projects and we were just sort of bored. So we decided to just write some songs after Kerry showed me a few riffs. Musically we didn’t really have too much direction. I don’t know, we just kind of started coming up with stuff and I liked where it was going and we went from there. We demoed some songs and then we went into an actual studio and recorded them.

Him and I did the whole recording ourselves, and honestly it was just for fun.  We didn’t expect to do anything with it, it was just a personal thing. We put that demo online and people started taking notice and we started getting show offers and we decided it would be best if we got a band together. We already knew a couple guys, and so we started playing shows. We played our first show July 29th last year, the first time as a full band. Like I said, it started picking up even more, and from there we started writing new songs which turned out to be songs from Roads to Judah. In August and September we had these songs and Deathwish had approached us. A few labels had approached us about releasing the demo, and we’d done a small self release so we weren’t too interested. Deathwish approached us and asked if they could do it, and we kind of told them we liked the demo, but we actually have a band together and we’ve been writing newer songs which we feel stronger about, and if you’re into releasing newer material we can do that. That was in November of last year, and we’ve just been going ever since.

Matt: So it seems like everything’s been happening pretty quick, and you guys only started playing your first shows like a year ago. Are you surprised at how fast things are happening for deafheaven?

George: Yeah yeah, definitely. Hugely unexpected. Like I said, when we first started writing these songs we were doing it out of boredom and had no intention of even releasing it on anything let alone doing everything we’re doing now with touring opportunities.

Matt: You guys play a unique form of black metal… there’re phrases and names tossed around like shoegaze black metal and post black metal. What kind of name do you guys apply to it?

George: We don’t. I think that I learned early on when we first released the demo, people were calling it this and people were calling it that. We have all these influences. We didn’t sit down one day together and say “let’s write this, and put a little of this in it and maybe do a little of this, do some of this,” it kind of came out organically. Everyone else can call it what they want I guess.

Matt: It seems like a few other bands have taken on a similar template as far as tempo changes and different vibes throughout the songs that are kind of a departure from ’90s black metal and the second wave.

George: Definitely, yeah.

Matt: Do you think there’s a reason why this has happened sort of all at once for a few bands?

George: Really what I attribute it to… one of our biggest obvious influences would be Weakling’s record, which came out over a decade ago now. I think that record and a few others really started propelling the sound and people started noticing that you could make emotional black metal, or you could expand the genre and play on different parts of it, and there are actually a lot of similarities between the genres. I really think it’s natural. Like you said there are a lot of forward thinking bands right now especially that are willing to break down the confines of the genre.

Matt: It seems like you guys have definitely  gotten a good response and I think the record’s great, but at the same time there’s sort of this Internet black metal tr00 kvlt culture that has revolted against it. Have you guys encountered any negative feedback from people in that vein?

George: I mean… I knew it was one of those things I kind of knew early on that traditional black metal purists weren’t really going to grab on to what we were trying to do, and that’s fine. We’ve encountered a little bit of it, but it’s nothing unexpected. At the end of the day, people can think what they want, life goes on. Music’s music, I don’t really think about it.

Matt: Sort of playing into that, I saw you guys at the Cobalt Cafe a few months ago in Canoga Park and you guys were great. I was just sort of struck by how you guys don’t really look like a black metal band by any stretch of the imagination.

George: [laughter]

Matt: Do you guys ever hear comments on that? Like “you guys don’t have long hair, you guys wear Joy Division shirts,” anything like that?

George: All the time. People especially kind of have an issue with the way I look like, kind of above everyone else. I get a lot of attention for my haircut. Yeah, you get a little flak for it but it would be way lamer if I was just putting on my favorite death metal Ts to play a show to prove to people that I wasn’t a poser or something; the whole thing is kind of silly to me. I look like this on and off stage, it would be stupid of me not to.

Matt: Right. So you guys are embarking on what I read is your first full US tour this week or next week, is that true?

George: Yeah, we leave Tuesday morning. We start in Seattle and then work our way down the West Coast to the South and then up the East Coast and then through the Mid West.

Matt: How does a young band like yourself — like you said you guys have only been together like a year — how did you guys book a full US tour’s worth of shows?

George: Actually when we signed to Deathwish, they gave us an agent to work with, so he handled it primarily which we’re incredibly grateful for. Obviously more local shows we can handle ourselves, but when it came to doing the entire US we were helped out on it.

Matt: As far as Deathwish goes, what was it about them compared to the other labels that approached you that made them stand out enough for you guys to choose them? I know you said they were willing to release new material, were other labels not so keen on doing that?

George: I think the other labels were interested but we were so new. And like any label you have to go in working with a new band really cautiously. Most were just keen on doing the demo release, and we just really didn’t want to go that route because we’d already done a limited self release. Like I said, we we were coming strong with new material. When Deathwish approached us, it was really unexpected, especially with our style of music. I followed Deathwish lightly in the past, but honestly I never paid too much attention to the majority of their roster, and I was kind of confused why they were approaching us initially. But I was totally wrong about them. Even though they’re a predominately hardcore label, that people that run it are extremely open minded musically. Right off the bat they were just really willing to facilitate our needs and wants and where we wanted the band to go, if we wanted to take it to the next level sort of thing. They totally supported us in what we were trying to accomplish and had faith in releasing new music because of the strength of the songs on the demo.

Matt: As far as the recording of Roads to Judah on your demo it was just you and Kerry, and for the full length you had I guess three extra guys, how did the writing process change, or did it change at all?

George: It changed a little bit, it changed definitely for the better. Neither Kerry nor I are drummers, so especially in that department after we got Trevor on drums, he has made the band so much bigger and better than it was. Being able to work with people that have that kind of talent, it really broadens what you can do in a song. I think the change is more freedom, more freedom to work with better ideas. A much more full process.

Matt: I know you guys probably aren’t thinking about new material as your debut just came out, but thinking ahead do you guys think you’ll stay within the same vein of what’s been called shoegaze black metal or post black metal or do you guys see yourselves branching out and incorporating other genres?

George: I think with every release there’s going to be a natural evolution. I think we’re fortunate enough to be playing a style we can evolve into so many different directions. We are happy to be playing what we’re playing now, I’m sure it’s gonna change this way or the other way. I definitely don’t see us writing the same record twice, not by any means.

Matt: As far you and the rest of the guys, is black metal really the primary genre for everyone or does everyone bring in other genres like post punk that they’re more interested in but they bring that to the writing table of deafheaven?

George: Definitely. Our other guitar player Nick plays in a strictly shoegaze band called Whirl who’s based out of Oakland. When we got him on board he had really liked the demo and we had known him for a few years, so when we got him on board that really opened up that side of the song writing, because that is his primary jam. He really brings a lot of the dream pop and post punk vibe to the material.

Matt: You guys are coming up in a time when music as a career is not really far fetched, but is much more difficult to obtain than in years past. Has the Internet and piracy and that whole culture… has that contributed to your rise in popularity and helped the band or harmed the band?

George: Definitely helped the band. It is what I really attribute like 95 percent of our success to. When we first released the demo, we released it for free. I emailed all of my favorite blogs to see if they’d be interested in putting it up, and that’s where the ball got rolling. The blogging community, especially for our style of music, I would say is essential.

Matt: How would you feel if someone were to pirate the new LP?

George: That’s totally fine, go for it. It got leaked originally, but unmastered copies were leaked. I’m all for leaks, but I don’t want the unfinished songs out there. That’s why when we went through our preorder cycle, we had an instant download so you could have the actual songs on your computer, which was kind of like the whole plan of it. As long as you’re getting the right stuff, I’m all for it.

Matt: It’s kind of an interesting perspective, as far as piracy in music and especially metal goes. Back in the early 2000s, you had the Metallica backlash against Napster. Do you think younger bands are kind of embracing piracy as something more helpful than harmful that older bands saw it as?

GeorgE: Yeah, definitely. Of course. I think some of the high rising bands that we have today are starting from the Internet, they’re starting from that community. Everyone, across all genres. Everyone’s really unitilizing it to their advantage. I think people that want to buy music and appreciate the other aspects of it, the artwork, the actual feel of the record, will do it. You never lose focus of that as well.

Matt: Just out of curiousity you guys are a young band, you guys have just booked this full US tour. Are you guys taking off time from day jobs or has deafheaven developed into enough of a career that you can use it as your primary source of income?

George: It’s definitely nowhere near a source of income yet. We all work or go to school. Hopefully, it would be awesome to one day evolve into a more full time touring band and have that liberty, but we’re still very new. If something like that were to happen, it will definitely take time.

Matt: Right, because it seems like you guys have been touring really heavily, especially for a band that has personal commitments with school and with work. Do you guys just have really flexible schedules?

George: Yeah, actually most of us work really flexible jobs. A couple of us are just full time students, so the summers are really available. When fall comes we’ll have to work a little harder to accomplish as much touring as we want, but it’ll happen.

Matt: Is music sort of the ideal career for all of you? Do you guys want to just moonlight in it or is it the goal in the end?

George: You know, I’m not sure. Right now I can’t even think of it being a career at all, to be honest. Not because I wouldn’t want it, but because the probability is I would say slim. Very few people live a decent life off their band. I don’t really think of it ever, but if it does happen and we stick around long enough and opportunities present themselves and it’s able to be a source of income, I’m all for it.

Matt: If music doesn’t develop into that, out of curiosity what are your interests outside of that?

George: Writing, mostly. I go to school for English. Our bass player is a respiratory therapist. He’s worked in a hospital for a couple years, and that’s kind of his main thing, to work in medicine. So that people don’t die [laughter]. Yeah, we all have interests.

Matt: How has English contributed to lyric writing? Do you write most of the lyrics?

George: I write all of them. It does a little, even when I wasn’t taking classes I was reading a lot. So I definitely have authors where their writing styles are influential. Classes help with that too, but nothing that I would consciously think of.

Matt: Do you think San Francisco will always be your muse as far as lyric writing?

George: No I don’t. I think whatever is going on at the time in my life whether it’s the city or not will serve as the primary inspiration for what I write. It just so happened that on the last album a lot of the material revolved around living in the city.

Matt: That’s all I got. Do you have any comments or plugs about deafheaven or any other projects?

George: Not really, hopefully we’ll see people on tour. Thanks for everyone that’s picked up the record and thank you for being interested enough to give me an interview, it’s cool.

Matt: Hey, thanks for taking the time.

George: Awesome man, take care.

All Metal Resource

Sexism in Metal

Before we begin, let me first start by saying that I love women’s rights. I’m all for feminism. Women should earn the same as men, women should be able to fight on the front lines in battle if they’re physically capable (the “physically capable” isn’t sexist, it’s realistic), and I even think women should have to register for the draft the same as men. I am clearly not a sexist. Except in one place; metal.

As far as metal goes, it’s not 2011, it’s 1911. This will definitely be a tightrope affair as far as writing; trying to prove I’m not sexist while at the same time asserting that I am. The simple fact of the matter is that I have this insurmountable aversion to women doing vocals in extreme metal. I don’t mean basic backing melodies like Laura Pleasants in Kylesa. I think she’s great and Kylesa is great. What I am talking about are women that front bands that do the extreme, guttural or shrieking vocals: vocals that until recently have been occupied by males. They are the definitive hyper-masculine vocals. When someone of the female persuasion does them, my mind just can’t digest it. This isn’t some douche bag indictment that says “oh, women just can’t compete with men,” or “females just can’t measure up as far as brutality.” I’m not saying that at all. In fact, I’m saying the exact opposite.

Katherine Katz from Salome and Agoraphobic Nosebleed. Stevie Floyd from Dark Castle. Angela Gossow of Arch Enemy. All of them are fantastic vocalists. But ever since I was a metal virgin, I couldn’t accept the idea of a women making that noise. I remember being in high school and my friend trying to get me into Arch Enemy by saying “dude, the vocalist is so hot though!” This friend turned out to be gay, but that’s beside the point. Deep down, it was her gender that turned me off to her vocals, and it was her good looks that served as the icing on the cake as far as me not being able to enjoy the band.

The first time I ever encountered Dark Castle was at the Scion Rock Fest, when I stumbled into Tent #1 randomly to see who was playing. It was a bit more doomy than I prefer, but I was definitely impressed by the vocals and general vibe of the band. And yet her femininity results in me writing the band off as one to respect, but not to actively listen to.

Like I said before, I’m not going to fight against this attitude as somehow not being sexist. It definitely is. What I’m trying to figure out is why I feel this way, when I’m such a booster for equality in every other regard. Why have the most extreme and brutal vocals been sanctified as an arena only to be occupied by men for me? Is this shitty attitude and perspective only participated in by me, or are there other closet metal sexists in the world? And last but not least, does this hurt female fronted bands? I mean, I’m sure on some level their gender could serve to promote the band as something new or different as a thinly veiled gimmick, but exactly how much does it help and how much does it end up hurting?

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Review: Freedom Call – Legend of the Shadowking (2010)

German power metal stalwarts Freedom Call are back with their 6th studio album, which in itself is a respectable feat, but the fact that Freedom Call have been very true to the traditional power metal sound all these years, is incredibly commendable. Despite the fact that Germany and other European nations are much more receptive to power metal bands still today than in North America, metaldom has still experienced a large change in it’s musical landscape with traditional metal in all it’s forms suffering in the process. Freedom Call are one of the few bands still breaking out melodic power metal with no shame, holding the banner high. How can you not get ay more “metal” than that? With that said, not only are Freedom Call still pumping out their tried and true brand of metal, but their latest album, Legend of the Shadowking is actually a worthy addition to their arsenal!

With highlights such as the outright power metal blazer “Out of the Ruins,” melodic AOR-inspired mainstream tune “Thunder God,” and the heavier side in “The Darkness” amongst many other solid tunes, there is no shame in enjoying power metal in the modern era of metal! Of course, those who doubt the legitimacy of power metal (which is more and more fans as the years go on I’m afraid) will take a giant steaming shit on this album as “80′s metal” with no other descriptors describing why exactly it is bad. Truth be told, there is nothing bold about Legend of the Shadowking, in fact it’s exactly what one would expect from the Freedom Call camp, but it’s still a solid slab of metal, taking advantage of good ole’ chunky guitar riffs that get the head banging, and melodies that will inevitably stick in your head. You don’t NEED progressive metal crossover appeal, and you don’t NEED gutteral vocals, or hip grooves to attract the kids. Freedom Call are still around because they have a strong base of fans that keep coming back for more, because they know they’ll be treated to something listenable, and I for one take pride that there is still reliable forms of metal out there that won’t change with the seasons amongst the fair weather metal crowd.

Germany still rocks hard, and I for one will keep spinning this lovely bitch for awhile.


Similar Artists: Edguy, Avantasia, Masterplan, Stratovarius, Gamma Ray

1.     Out of the Ruins
2.     Thunder God
3.     Tears of Babylon
4.     Merlin – Legend of the Past
5.     Resurrection Day
6.     Under the Spell of the Moon
7.     Dark Obsession
8.     The Darkness
9.     Remember!
10.     Ludwig II – Prologue
11.     The Shadowking
12.     Merlin – Requiem
13.     Kingdom of Madness
14.     A Perfect Day

Chris Bay     Vocals, Guitars
Lars Rettkowitz     Guitars
Samy Saemann     Bass
Dan Zimmermann     Drums


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New Artist Watch – NOVA

The instrumental menagerie known as NOVA, is the product of Chazz McConnell (Sol Asunder), and Max Seeman (Anomalous), and represents yet another archetype instrumental release that supplies just as much impact as Scale the Summit or Animals As Leaders. Hailing from California, NOVA don’t banter when it comes to classification, but their sound is certainly a malleable construct of slight of hand metalcore, with a much more pronounced traditional prog influence that is reminiscent of Liquid Tension Experiment. Musical nerds beware: you may have met your match.

Listen/download the full album Invert Theory below:

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AMR Exclusive Interview with Torche’s Steve Brooks

Things have been pretty quiet on the Torche front for awhile. Last year they released the solid EP Songs for Singles, and after a tour with Kylesa they added a second guitarist to boost their number from three back to the original four. I touched base via email with guitarist/vocalist Steve Brooks to find out how the recording of their next LP is going, what new guitarist Andrew Elstner brings to the band, and how the band survives in a music world defined by piracy.

Matt: To start off, can you give me an update on the writing and recording of your next album?

Steve: We’re currently writing and working on pre-production demos for the next release this summer.

Matt: Back in January we got a little bit of information about the addition of Andrew Elstner and the writing of the follow up. How are things going, and is it shaping up to be any different from Torche’s previous work?

Steve: It’s too soon to tell how different the next record will sound from our previous releases, but there’s definitely a different feel to what we’ve written so far. Having Andrew a part of the band has been inspiring. We’re changing, but it’s another step forward.

Matt: You guys spent an extensive period of time as a three piece before adding Andrew. When Juan left the band, did you guys always have the goal of adding a second guitarist in the back of your mind, or was continuing as a three piece the agreed upon course of action?

Steve: To be honest, we weren’t going to add another member unless we were certain he was going to work personally, professionally and creatively. I asked Andrew immediately after Juan’s departure in early 2009, but the timing wasn’t right. Also, the other members of the band needed to get to know him as well. As far as i’m concerned, Andrew was the only guy for the job. It took a couple years, but it was worth the wait.

Matt: How has Andrew contributed to the writing process of the new album? Has this been different from the way Torche songs were written before he joined the band?

Steve: The first week we practiced together, we wrote new songs. Didn’t even attempt to play old ones. We had to get a feel for working with Andrew and what he could add to the band. Andrew and I have also been writing separate from the other members, which is something I haven’t done with Torche. It’s a good productive time for us now.

Matt: You guys are about to embark on a US tour with Big Business and Helms Alee. Do you guys plan on playing any new material on that tour?

Steve: If the songs are done, we will. I can’t wait to play new tunes.

Matt: What kind of role do you think the Internet has played in your rise as a band? Has piracy helped or hurt the band in the long run? How do you feel about people pirating Torche records?

Steve: The whole industry has changed. There’s good and bad to the whole pirating thing. As a music fan, I do what I can to support the bands I like. I’ll never be rich from making music, but I can only hope that there will be enough supporters to keep us working.

Matt: Out of curiosity, do the members of Torche have jobs outside of the band, or does the band bring in enough money for Torche to be the primary occupation of you and the other guys?

Steve: It’s a lot of penny pinching for all of us. Outside of Torche.. Jon has his own studio and records bands, Rick and Andrew have part time jobs. I’m unemployed at the moment, but finding opportunities to make a buck from time to time. It’s hard to keep a job when you’re in a touring band. Plus, 3 of the members of Torche live in different cities, so getting together requires traveling that most jobs wouldn’t let happen. Thank goodness we’ve got a killer tour coming up.

Matt: Pretty much every member of Torche has roots and interests in music outside of the Torche sound, from straight up rock to grindcore. How do these other musical interests influence the Torche sound?

Steve: That’s an interesting question I don’t know how to answer. hehe

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Barren Earth Begin Recording + Studio Trailer!

Barren Earth’s breakout record Curse of the Red River made some head movement last year with their brand of melodic death metal. Apparently the group has entered Helsinki’s Sonic Pump Studios to record the follow-up. Barren Earth has written 12 new songs, and is currently laying them down with engineer/co-producer Jukka Varmo. Dan Swanö (Katatonia/Opeth) will once again be at the mixing helm. The sophomore album is due for release in autumn 2011 on Peaceville Records.

And in other news, the group has released a “silly” teaser trailer for our enjoyment. Yaaaaaaay!


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Review: Spellcaster – Under the Spell (2011)

Fiery paced speed metal, and larger than life fantasy topics about molten steel and chainsaw champions, Oregon’s Spellcaster are the latest in the traditional metal craze hitting Europe and America, and I fucking love it! I won’t preach about the need for these types of bands to help ground the metal community, educating us all on the basics of what makes metal great, instead, I will focus on why Spellcaster’s debut album, Under the Spell is pure, unadulterated entertainment that clearly does not take itself too seriously, and fuck does the metal community ever need a dose of humility these days!

From beginning to end, Under the Spell is a ferocious torrent of riff after speed metal riff (note: if anyone wanted to know the difference between speed metal and thrash metal, this is a great album to define that), with tight coordination between dueling riffs, and well paced drums that aren’t under-utilized, or an over-abundant buzzsaw, and of course, entertaining solo’s that don’t melt any brains with their complexity, but fit the nature of the music perfectly.

The only real noteworthy drawback of Under the Spell, and the preceding EP Spells of Speed, is the pitchy and flat vocals of singer Thomas Adams. The man has the pipes to be recognized as legit, but he desperately needs a good vocal coach to bring something more to the table in order to supplement the already outstanding instrumental work of the band. This problem is very reminiscent to Boston’s Ravage, who have all the chops in the world, but severely drop the ball in the vocal department.

All in all though, Spellbound have all the makings of a very promising career, promoted by the fantastic indie label Heavy Artillery who shamelessly stick to old school metal such as this, brandishing album after album of noteworthy material. Hail to the old school, I’ll be humming a few riffs from this album for at least another week longer in the shower (too much? sorry…).

Similar Artists: Jag Panzer, Armored Saint, Metal Church, Ravage


1.     Spellbound
2.     Chainsaw Champion
3.     Molten Steel
4.     Locked On
5.     Power Rising
6.     Nite of the Hellbeast
7.     Sands of Fear
8.     Spellcaster

Gabe Franco     Bass
Shad Covert     Drums
Cory Boyd     Guitars
Tyler Loney     Guitars
Thomas Adams     Vocals

Heavy Artillery

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Opeth Releases “Heritage” Artwork

After teasing Opeth fans with a Facebook status telling them they had something show in half an hour (winky face and all), Opeth has now released the cover art for their upcoming album Heritage. According to the Opeth website, the art was done by “long time friend” Travis Smith.

Smith did an interesting job, clearly. It’s quite pretty artistically, and I pick up a bit of religious symbolism. Humanity picking forbidden fruit from the tree, resulting in the city burning and them dying. Or something like that. Also of interest is the fact that each band member’s head is on the tree, and what makes that especially amusing is that it appears the head on the far right that is falling out of the tree appears to be keyboardist Per Wiberg. What makes this noteworthy is that this is Per’s last album with Opeth, as he was basically let go from the band after recording the album. Now, his dismissal will forever be represented in the Heritage artwork by him literally falling out of the Opeth tree.

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Review: Wormrot – Dirge (2011)

Wormrot‘s Dirge begins with “No One Gives a Shit” and ends with “The Final Insult.” Those tracks, and the 23 between them, make up some of the most punishing auditory abuse anyone could ever order up.

Clocking in at only 18 minutes, the Singaporean three piece’s second effort does much to live up to the hype machine that was their debut, 2009′s Abuse. And while it by no means eclipses the first record, Dirge serves as a validating reminder for why the Internet metal world became so intoxicated by Wormrot in the first place.

While Abuse opened the world’s eyes to Wormrot, it’s Dirge that will sustain the stare. Fueled by the same driving guitar and pummeling drums, songs come in one minute blasts of frustration, anger, and what one can only assume is merciless social commentary. The vocals alternate between shrieking that would fit right at home on any black metal album and guttural growls. The effect is one that sounds like the two voices are screaming back and forth at each other, when in fact they’re actually the same person. And that is the draw of Wormrot; the band sounds like they’re doing much more than their numbers indicate. With only one guitar and no bass, the riffs are fast, driving and memorable, and they’re accented by drumming that is not only hammering away at an unthinkable BPM for its blast beats, but can easily slide into any groove the guitar leads it through.

On Dirge, Wormrot correctly maintains this same winning formula. Never known as a genre that pushes its limits, Wormrot keeps its grindcore within that special sweet spot that is accented by the almost demo like buzz and hammer of the guitars and drums. The effect is one that stresses just how raw the grind really is.

Dirge probably won’t be the bait that lures in those that haven’t been initiated into grind yet, but it will absolutely tickle the blackened and warped musical brains of current grind aficionados.


Similar Bands: Pig Destroyer, Nasum, Kill the Client, Insect Warfare

1. No One Gives a Shit
2. Compulsive Disposition
3. All Go No Emo
4. Public Display of Infection
5. Overpowered Violence
6. Semiconcious Godsize Dumbass
7. Spot a Pathetic
8. Evolved Into Nothing
9. Butt Krieg is Showing
10. Fucking Fierce So What
11. Ferocious Bombardment
12. Principle Of The Puppet Warfare
13. Deceased Occupation
14. Waste of Time
15. Stench of Ignorance
16. Meteor to the Face
17. Addicts of Misery
18. You Suffer But Why Is It My Problem
19. Erased Existence
20. Back Stabber Mission Aborted
21. Destruct the Bastards
22. Plunged Into Illusions
23. Manipulation
24. A Dead Issue
25. The Final Insult

Fit – Drums

Rasyid – Guitars

Arif – Vocals

Earache Records

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