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CRIPPLE BASTARDS Preview New Track “Nemico A Terra”

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With the release of their latest album only a few weeks away, Italian maniacs, CRIPPLE BASTARDS, thought it only appropriate to release another new track for your listening (dis)pleasure. The new LP, titled Nero In Metastasi, is due out on Relapse Records February 18, but you can grind early (and for free) with the embedded preview track. “Nemico A Terra” apparently translates to “Enemy Down,” but it’s not like you’d be able to understand anything else Giulio says in the track, anyway. Look for the official SMN review of Nero In Metastasi soon.

WARFATHER Offer Up Debut Album Via Stream

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WARFATHER, Steve Tucker’s much talked-about follow-up to MORBID ANGEL, released its debut album, Orchestrating the Apocalypse, last week. In honor of this not-so-momentous event, the band is streaming the entire album. Let’s just say “Ageless Merciless” is no “Ageless, Still I Am,” and leave it at that. Actually, in case that reference is too obtuse (which really, it shouldn’t be), just don’t listen to it–plain and simple. For those of you who enjoy self-torture however, head on over to Revolver to hear Warfather’s debut in all its embarrassing glory. Or just spin Illud Divinum Insanus again. It’s like a lesser of two evils thing.

GRIDLINK – Longhena

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Releases February 19 through Handshake, Inc.

From the shimmering introductory chords to vocalist Jon Chang’s final screech, Longhena is proof that grindcore is living and breathing long after many fans may have turned their backs on the genre. For the uninitiated, strap yourselves in and prepare for pure sonic torment in the best way possible, and for the fans, raise your glasses. It’s spastic, technical, fast and ferocious, but most importantly, it’s good. Sure, there are fast bands, and brutal bands–bands whose bread and butter consists of making the metronome weep–but few are genuinely good, and Gridlink holds this distinct honor.

Gridlink, the spiritual successor to Chang’s previous groundbreaking band Discordance Axis, has finally achieved grindcore nirvana through the muse of bullet-hell shooter video games, and will easily top year-end best lists. Much like the video games that prove to be one of Chang’s lyrical muses, Gridlink definitely has a steep learning curve. Songs that may seem to blend together at first reward the listener through repeated plays. Whether guitarist Takafumi Matsubara (Hayaino Daisuki) is performing high-speed tremolo runs through the upper register, or looping his own riffing upon itself to a confusing degree (“Island Sun”), his guitar-work challenges the listener to keep up. And for a genre as over saturated and self-imposing as grindcore, that’s no small feat.

With only 45 minutes of material spread across six years of releases, Gridlink hardly holds the record for most prolific output, but they’re 45 of the most replayable minutes grind fans will likely ever have, so all’s not lost. In fact, where other bands seem to excel at churning out countless forgettable releases in rapid succession, in opposition, Gridlink’s conservative approach has seemed to work wonders for their back catalog. Outspoken front-man Jon Chang has gone on record saying he wanted to make the record Napalm Death would have made after From Enslavement to Obliteration, had they not gone the Morrisound route, but I’m not sure old Napalm could have made Longhena.

“Look to Winward,” the album’s closer and strongest track, highlights axe-man Takafumi’s trademark bee swarm tremolo riffing before swerving into a whiplash-inducing hammer-on/pull-off run halfway through that sets the stage for Longhena‘s close. Namely, a subtle yet substantial string arrangement that closes the final chapter of the Gridlink saga, and with it, all hope for grind to come. For Gridlink, self-actualization has been achieved, and while we have to applaud them for leaving on the highest note possible, that doesn’t make it sting any less.

10/10

Mike Melvin wrote this review. He doesn’t have a Facebook or Twitter though, so kindly direct all pejoratives to the comments section.

AT THE GATES To Unleash First New Album In 19 Years This Fall

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Some 19 years after releasing their classic Slaughter of the Soul, Swedish melodeath legends AT THE GATES have announced a new album. The new LP, the band’s fifth in 22 years, is titled At War With Reality, and is coming to a Century Media distributor near you fall 2014. Apparently Lindberg and co. could no longer sit idly by while countless bands shamelessly aped their identity, or they just like writing music. Either way, whether you wanted it or not, you now have a new At The Gates album to look forward to. In 2014. Let that sink in a bit… You can watch the oh-so cryptic teaser video below, but since you already know what it’s teasing, what’s the point, really?

Amon Amarth, Enslaved, Skeletonwitch – Saturday Jan. 25th, Tampa FL

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I left my house in Orlando just after 5:00 PM. Doors at The Ritz were at 7. Skeletonwitch took the stage at 8. This gave me just enough time to make the drive to Tampa, find a place to park, stand in the will call line, get my ticket and get inside. As I merged onto Interstate 4 heading from Orlando to Tampa I set my iPod to play my ‘various artists’ folder. Now I have the most impressive and greatest various artists folder on the planet, no doubt about it. It’s 130 songs with no more than 3 songs by any one artist. It is arranged alphabetically BY SONG TITLE, not by artist. This adds to the feeling of randomness and heightens one’s sense of “I wonder what song is next.” Anyhow, the drive was smooth, traffic was minimal, and I arrived in Ybor City and found a place to park just as Girls Just Wanna Have Fun by Cindi Lauper was playing. Naturally I listened to the end of the song before I got out of the car.

Once I got inside I found a great place to watch the show and it was just a short wait before Skeletonwitch started. Let me just say that they owned the place as soon as they walked on stage. They played several songs from their new album Serpents Unleashed (read my review of it here) a few off Beyond The Permafrost, and one or two from other albums. It was a great set. If you’ve never seen them before I recommend you do. Good live band and their vocalist Chance Garnette is a good performer.

Next up was Enslaved. I was super excited to see them because I’ve been a fan for a long time and hadn’t had the opportunity to see them before now. It seemed from the crowd reaction that perhaps not everybody there was familiar with Enslaved. Also, some of the subtleties of their music, especially the newer stuff, may have been lost in a live setting. However, by the end of their set they completely won over the crowd. Their songs are so long that they only played a six song set, but I got to hear RUUN, Allfoor Odinn, and Isa, so that was awesome.

Of course Amon Amarth was headlining. I have seen them many times since they released With Oden On Our Side, and each time they put on a good, professional looking and sounding show. This time was no different. They played all the songs from their past albums that people would want to hear and a few off their newest album Deceiver Of The Gods (read my review of it here.) Of course they ended with Pursuit Of Vikings. The one thing i did notice right away was the guitar sound. On Deceiver Of The Gods the guitar has a sharper tone than on past albums, more of a thrash metal sound. It seems like they carried this over into their live performance as well. The guitar sound was sharp whereas in the past I’ve seen them and the guitar sounded muddy because they tune down like 45 steps or whatever.

Overall it was a good show and I recommend you go if and when it comes to your city. As I was driving home I settled in behind a State Trooper and followed him as the small amount of traffic quickly cleared from his path. He eventually got off at the Haines City exit. I like to think that he went to Perkins and met a beautiful young waitress who will become the love of his life. Now, some of you may wonder why I went to see this show in Tampa when there is an Orlando date on the 27th. Two reasons, one is that Skeletonwitch isn’t allowed to play that date because the Orlando House of Blues is on Disney property and they have a fit every time a metal show is booked there and they kick at least one band off the bill. This happens all the time. Not only is it annoying but it is unnecessary and totally avoidable. There are several other venues in Orlando that could host a show of this size. The other reason I’m not going to the Orlando show is that I’ll be on the motherfucking 70000 Tons Of Metal cruise!!!

Show reviewed by Alonzo Mosely aka Slippery Jim, the other half of the legendary Crotchduster. Alonzo also plays guitar for the undeniably badass DESTRUCTONOMICON

Demonic Resurrection announce new guitar player

Indian metal veterans Demonic Resurrection, who recently parted ways with long time guitarist Daniel Kenneth Rego have announced his replacement. Axeman Nishith Hegde, known for his work with Albatross and Reptilian Death has now joined the band. An official announcement was made via the bands facebook page along with a clip of Nishith playing solos from the bands last album ‘The Return To Darkness’ that released in 2010 on Candlelight Records.

Watch the video clip –

At the farewell concert held at Blue Frog on 19th Jan, Hegde joined the band mid-way through their set on stage for the rest of the set trading off solos with Daniel while Demonstealer took over just vocals.

Website – www.demonicresurrection.in (more…)

NIGHTBRINGER Plot European Tour (And One US Date)

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The occult black metal outfit, NIGHTBRINGER, has announced their plan to take over Europe with an extensive tour this April. Dubbed the “Disciples of the Void” tour, support will be handled by fellow ne’er-do-wells PSEUDOGOD, SARGEIST, and IRKALLIAN ORACLE. Oh yeah, they’re also going to venture far out of their comfort zones to perform a single North American date in their home state of Colorado beforehand. The full list of dates is below, or you can just check out the fancy embedded image. Look at it shine!

NIGHTBRINGER Tour Dates:
3/1/14 Denver, CO @ The Hi-Dive
3/14/14 : Speyer, DE @ Grey Mass Festival
3/15/14 : Speyer, DE @ Grey Mass Festival
3/17/14: Erfurt, DE @ From Hell
3/18/14 : Switzerland -TBA
3/19/14: Torino. IT @ White Lion’s Club
3/20/14: Saint Etienne, FR @ La Cle d’Voute
3/21/14 : Roeselaere, BE @ Zaal Diezie
3/22/14: Paris, FR @ Glazart
3/23/14: Arnhem, NL @ Willemeen

Cognizance – Inquisition

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Cognizance from UK is playing blistering Technical Death Metal with melodic strains that falls right between Neuraxis and Necrophagist. That isn’t the best way to describe it because the band is using aggression and its own flair to concoct music that’s keeping it extreme while remaining scorching, heady and seething. It has an unstoppable momentum which is what keeps it fluid, coherent and so damn easy to listen to and repeat all the same all over again. Bands deviating too much from the laid path are difficult to grasp and this one is sticking to its guns, however flamboyant and hot.

The album gets over in just under 15 minutes but seems longer than that, that’s because there’s a lot of music crammed in there but the beauty is how streamlined it all sounds, nothing jarring or overly fancy. This isn’t like Rings of Saturn, it’s relatively straightforward and has a motive of its own, nothing off the beaten path which is what forms the band’s shortcoming too – it’s rather predictable and easy to get used to despite the histrionics.

Having said that, this is an impressive debut, the kind most bands would hope for. It’s already vying for a place among the genre’s current greats, featuring the drumming of Alex Rudinger of The Faceless too. It’s quickly making a worthy name for itself and hope the next album is ambitious and more experimental, everything else is already top notch.

 
Kunal Choksi

Hiss from the Moat – Misanthropy

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Hiss from the Moat is one of the modern bands playing a scintillating mix of Black/Death Metal, in that it’s more Death Metal than Black Metal but there’s this edge which allows more room for ambience and atmosphere. Right off the bat, it’s reminiscent of Lykathea Aflame, the controlled yet overwhelming blasting done by none other than James Payne of Hour of Penance. Now Italy is quickly becoming a centre for killer Death Metal and this band is no exception – it’s doing everything right, fusing Behemoth-ian riffing and atmosphere into music plain brutal and relentless. More than Behemoth, it’s comparable to Hate circa ‘Awakening of the Liar’ and latter Decapitated stuff. It’s certainly got this Polish sheen to the music, competence of the Italian bands and confidence of superstars.

What’s remarkable is the effortless ease with which it’s creating music that’s actually different from any other band today. Detrimentum tried something ambitious and pulled it off back in the day with ‘Embracing this Deformity’ and I’ve already mentioned Lykathea Aflame and the Polish influences. That’s what this band is all about. Anything else is humbug. There’s nothing in the music to suggest otherwise. This is epic blackened Death Metal. Plain and simple. The songs are rather linear and there aren’t really any breakdowns to warrant any other classification. It’s just blasting and Behemoth-ian riffing, sometimes also reminiscent of the Hate Eternal style of music. But this is linear like I said, it’s punctuating it with lots of pace changes, atmospheric elements but it’s remaining on track like a bullet train, breaking limits but staying on its track of blasphemous mayhem.

Certainly it’s not like your average Blasphemy or Incantation clone, nor does it touch the extremity of the raucous mid-period Belphegor, but you’ve got to acknowledge this different kind of Black/Death Metal where all the modern elements are used to create something outstanding. It’s blistering, epic and thunderous. It’s Behemoth around the time of ‘Satanica’ where it was trying to meld influences of both styles, only this is fast-forwarded, bending space and time, so to speak. I can’t stress enough on the Hate and Lykathea Aflame comparisons as they remain standouts for what they’re doing with the sound, taking it forward in their own way, at least around the time of the aforementioned releases and the latter with its debut album.

Released on CD by Lacerated Enemy Records, there’s certainly more than meets the eye. Underneath the straightforward cover art, there’s a vision, a purpose. I see this band expanding more upon its vicious template laid down in concrete, threatening to shake the foundations of the narrow confines of this style of Death Metal music. Leave it to Italy to add speed, technicality and an air of supremacy in everything.

 

Kunal Choksi

 

CRETIN Begin Recording New Album

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The delightfully demented grindcore troupe, CRETIN, have officially begun recording their hotly-anticipated followup to Freakery. It’s been eight years since the band released the aforementioned LP, but as bassist Matt Widener (LIBERTEER) puts it, “with Freakery you grinded like it was ’89, now you’ll grind like it’s, uh, ’91?” Sounds good to us. Slated for a fall release through Relapse Records, this as-yet untitled sophomore album will be sure to prompt more than a few Google searches when it drops. Given their track record for lyrical subject matter though, we’d probably advise against feeding those urges–some things are just better left to the imagination.

TesseracT, Intronaut, Cloudkicker announce North American Tour‏

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TesseracT will once again be returning to North America. It will be TesseracT’s third tour supporting their critically acclaimed Altered State album.  Former touring partners, Intronaut, who will be coming fresh off a tour of their own with Between The Buried and Me and Deafheaven will be direct support. To make these events even more special, instrumentalists, DIY prog artist, Cloudkicker, will be touring for the first time ever with the members of Intronaut as his backing band.

TesseracT, Intronaut, Cloudkicker
3/29 Springfield, VA @ Empire (Tesseract only)
3/30 Charlotte, NC @ Tremont Music Hall (Tesseract only)
4/1 Atlanta, GA @ The Drunken Unicorn
4/2 Jacksonville, FL @ Brewster’s Rock Bar
4/3 Orlando, FL @ Backbooth
4/5 Dallas, TX @ Club Dada
4/6 Austin, TX @ Dirty Dog Bar
4/7 Houston, TX @ Fitzgerald’s Downstairs
4/10 Tempe, AZ @ Club Red
4/11 Los Angeles, CA @ Roxy
4/13 San Francisco, CA @ DNA Lounge
4/14 Portland, OR @ Hawthorne Theatre
4/15 Seattle, WA @ Studio Seven
4/16 Vancouver, BC @ Rickshaw Theatre
4/18 Edmonton, AB @ Pawn Shop
4/19 Calgary, AB @ Republik
4/22 Billings, MY @ The Railyard
4/23 Denver, CO @ The Marquis Theatre
4/25 Minneapolis, MN @ Skyway Theatre
4/23 Cleveland, OH @ Agora Ballroom
4/28 Boston, MA @ Brighton Music Hall
4/29 Philadelphia, PA @ The Barbary
4/30 New York, NY @ The Gramercy

BATTLECROSS To Hit The Road This March With Protest The Hero

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BATTLECROSS will be joining Canada’s Protest The Hero as direct support on the band’s spring US tour, set to commence March 1st in Buffalo. Tickets go on sale this Friday, January 24th.

BATTLECROSS w/ Protest the Hero, The Safety Fire, Intervals, Night Verses
3/01/2014 Waiting Room – Buffalo, NY
3/02/2014 Bogarts – Cincinnati, OH
3/03/2014 The Stache at The Intersection – Grand Rapids, MI
3/04/2014 Wooly’s – Des Moines, IA
3/05/2014 The Garage – Burnsville, MN
3/07/2014 The Eagles Hall – Milwaukee, WI
3/08/2014 Mojoe’s – Joliet, IL
3/09/2014 Bourbon Theatre – Lincoln, NE
3/10/2014 Aggie Theatre – Ft. Collins, CO
3/11/2014 Mesa Theatre & Club – Grand Junction, CO
3/12/2014 Urban Lounge – Salt Lake City, UT
3/14/2014 The Hop – Spokane, WA
3/15/2014 Knitting Factory – Boise, ID
3/16/2014 Knitting Factory – Reno, NV
3/17/2014 Assembly – Sacramento, CA
3/18/2014 House of Blues – Anaheim, CA
3/19/2014 191 Toole – Tucson, AZ
3/21/2014 Jake’s Backroom – Lubbock, TX
3/22/2014 Red 7 – Austin, TX
3/23/2014 Juanita’s – Little Rock, AR
3/24/2014 The Varsity Theatre – Baton Rouge, LA
3/26/2014 State Theatre – St. Petersburg, FL
3/27/2014 Culture Room – Ft. Lauderdale, FL
3/28/2014 Jack Rabbits – Jacksonville, FL
3/29/2014 Ziggys By The Sea – Wilmington, NC
3/30/2014 Lincoln Theatre – Raleigh, NC
4/01/2014 Tremont Music Hall – Charlotte, NC
4/02/2014 The Rock and Roll Hotel – Washington, DC
4/03/2014 Webster Theater – Hartford, CT
4/04/2014 Montage Music Hall – Rochester, NY
4/05/2014 The Middle East Downstairs – Cambridge, MA
4/06/2014 Revolution – Amityville, NY

Gaped – The Murderous Inception

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Gaped is one of the best Brutal Death Metal releases I’ve heard recently. Now pay close attention – it’s not an out-and-out album of that genre or sub-genre, it’s actually similar to those balls-out Rogga Johansson bands with heaviness to the max, pummeling to dust and riffastic to the limit. Between the lines, it’s also Swedish-sounding, which is rather remarkable considering this band is from Australia of all places, and it’s also making a mark in this style of late with bands like Disentombed and Excruciate.

It’s just as riffy as say early Cannibal Corpse, although this sounds different. The point being, brutality is just another logical progression of the Death Metal style and that is evidently possible, with leads and all, Swedish touches, hints of melodies even. It’s reminiscent of early Hypocrisy too, the first two albums in particular, also Grave and Sinister offshoots namely Supreme Pain and Houwitser. It’s the Death Metal with riffing intact instead of silly slams and breakdowns, so to speak. This is the music that stands out and the Swedish touch only gives it an added dimension, untouched by most of the US-influenced bands these days.

This is just an EP but what a satisfying one it is – it doesn’t give you the impression of repeating itself, such well-placed and well-thought are the songs, that even after multiple listens, you keep enjoying them. There’s even the unmistakable Cannibal Corpse cover of Stripped, Raped and Strangled. This band has immense clout much like the German ones but this one has added dynamics and scope to make it stand out from all its peers. Clearly, this is an outstanding release – it’s Death Metal of the future, for what it’s worth.

 

Kunal Choksi

 

SCOTT IAN: Legendary ANTHRAX Guitarist, Author, and TV Personality Officially Announces “Speaking Words” Tour, North American Leg

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At this point, it’s no surprise to anyone that legendary heavy metal musician, author, and television personality SCOTT IAN has a lot to say. After decades-worth of international touring with Anthrax, bumping elbows with illustrious (and sometimes ridiculous) characters all over the media spectrum, and undergoing general “you won?t believe this” experiences – SCOTT IAN certainly has some hilarious and surprisingly personal stories to share. Following the resounding success of the UK leg of his “Speaking Words” tour, Scott is picking up the mic again for a 15-city North American leg, kicking off in Chicago, IL on February 20th.

An official “Speaking Words” tour teaser, featuring professional footage from his upcoming “Speaking Words: Live in Glasgow” DVD (pre-order coming soon) can be seen below.

Currently Confirmed SCOTT IAN “Speaking Words” Dates
2/20 – Chicago, IL @ Mayne Stage
2/21 – Westland, MI @ The Token Lounge
2/22 – Pittsburgh, PA @ Rex Theatre
2/24 – Cleveland, OH @ Agora Theater
2/25 – Toronto, ON @ El Mocambo Club
2/26 – Kingston, ON @ The Mansion
2/27 – Ottowa, ON @ Ritual
3/01 – Baltimore, MD @ The Ramshead Live: Power Plant Live
3/02 – Philadelphia, PA @ World Cafe Live
3/04 – Boston, MA @ Hard Rock Cafe
3/05 – New York, NY @ BB Kings
3/06 – Syracuse, NY @ Lost Horizon
3/07 – West Warwick, RI @ Manchester 65
3/08 – Portland, ME @ Port City Music Hall

PROSTITUTE DISFIGUREMENT Premieres New Lyric Video

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PROSTITUTE DISFIGUREMENT are pleased to unveil a new paean of punishment in the form of their latest lyric video for “Glorify Through Cyanide.” The newest taste of terror, which centers itself on American cult leader Jim Jones, comes off the band’s soon-to-be-released From Crotch To Crown opus. Their first full-length proper since 2008’s mauling Descendants Of Depravity.

From Crotch To Crown will be released via Willowtip Records on February 4, 2014.

SLAYER, WITH SPECIAL GUESTS SUICIDAL TENDENCIES AND EXODUS, TO HIT THE ROAD

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Slayer will take a break from writing and recording their next album to hit the road on May 9 for a handful of dates intended to pummel devotees with a night of moshing and frenetic thrash-punk-metal.  Joining Slayer as Special Guests for these shows are Suicidal Tendencies and Exodus, marking the first time Slayer and Suicidal have toured together since the 1990 European “Clash of the Titans” tour.  Gary Holt, who continues to fill in for Slayer’s fallen guitarist Jeff Hanneman, will do double-duty as guitarist in his primary band, Exodus.

The dates will culminate for all three bands at the May 17 “Rock on The Range” rock festival in Columbus, OH, where they will share the stage with Guns N’ Roses, Avenged Sevenfold, and Kid Rock  some other crappy bands.

Confirmed dates
MAY
9   The Great Salt Air, Salt Lake City, UT
10   Fillmore, Denver, CO
11   Shrine, Billings, MT
13   Uptown Theatre, Kansas City, MO
15   The Pageant, St Louis, MO
16   Eagles Ballroom, Milwaukee, WI
17   Rock on the Range, Columbus, OH

BENIGHTED Premier New Track‏, “Collection of Dead Portraits”

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BENIGHTED have released another new track from their forthcoming album, ‘Carnivore Sublime‘. The track, titled “Collection of Dead Portraits” is streaming below. ‘Carnivore Sublime’ has been set for a North American release on February 18th. The album art was designed by ABORTED vocalist Sven de Caluwé.

 

BENIGHTED TOUR DATES w/ Loudblast
2/27  Annecy (FR) Le Brise Glace
2/28  Lyon (FR) Transbordeur
3/1 Toulon (FR) Le Vox
3/2 Perpignan (FR) Le Crockmore
3/4 Toulouse (FR) Connexion Live
3/6 Bordeaux (FR) Le Bootleg
3/7 Limoges (FR) CCM John Lennon
3/8 Bourges (FR) Le Nadir
3/9 Nantes (FR) Le Ferrailleur
3/10 Poitiers (FR) Le Confort Moderne
3/11 Eragny (FR) Covent Garden
3/12 Paris (FR) Le Divan du Monde
3/13 Colmar (FR) Le Grillen
3/14 Rombas (FR) Espace Culturel
3/15 Dommarien (FR) La Niche

NEW ENGLAND METAL AND HARDCORE FEST Welcomes The Metal Alliance Tour; Initial Day-To-Day Lineups Announced – More Bands To Be Confirmed!

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The NEW ENGLAND METAL & HARDCORE FESTIVAL is pleased to officially welcome The Metal Alliance Tour to its already punishing three-day assault. The illustrious tour package will make a stop in Worcester on Saturday April 18th and features headliners Behemoth, alongside their Metal Blade labelmates Goatwhore, with additional support from 1349, Inquisition, and Black Crown Initiate.

Featuring two stages, the now legendary NEW ENGLAND METAL & HARDCORE FESTIVAL continues to drive dozens of bands and thousands of fans to the iconic Worcester Palladium. Celebrating its sixteenth anniversary, this year’s edition will take place on April 17th, 18th, and 19th. Initial day-to-day lineups are officially posted with more bands to be confirmed in the coming weeks. (Note this is NOT the official running order).

Thursday – April 17, 2014
All That Remains
Bleeding Through
Broken Hope
Cop Problem
Emmure
Enabler
Fallujah
Gideon
Kublai Khan
Obey The Brave
Rivers of Nihil
Years Since The Storm
Young and In The Way

Friday – April 18, 2014
1349
Behemoth
Bent Life
Black Crown Initiate
Born Low
Carnifex
Colin Of Arabia
Cruel Hand
Erra
Fire and Ice
Fit For An Autopsy
Goatwhore
I Declare War
Inquistion
Malfunction
Naysayer
Slapshot
Suburban Scum
The Acacia Strain
The Mongoloids
Thy Art Is Murder
Warhound
Whitechapel
Within The Ruins

Saturday – April 19, 2014
All Out War
Alpha & Omega
Barrier
Battlecross
Counterparts
Discourse
Gift Giver
Harm’s Way
Iced Earth
Indirections
King Nine
Lionheart
Loyal To The Grave
Nails
Nile
Ramallah
Reign Supreme
Revamp
Sabaton
Scars of Tomorrow
Sylar
The Last Ten Seconds of Life
Those Who Fear
Twitching Tongues
Will To Die

IHATE: Chris Barnes Launches Vicious New Death Metal Project

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Six Feet Under founding throat/death metal icon, Chris Barnes, is pleased to bring fans his latest work of sonic deviance in the form of the fittingly christened, IHATE. A venture inadvertently launched between Barnes and multi-instrumentalist/fellow horror enthusiast Bob Taggett, their as-yet-untitled debut promises to deliver eight violent tracks of raw, unrepentant, death metal brutality and lyrical depravity.

Says Barnes of the project’s formation, “Early last year I got a message via Facebook from someone named Bob and Bob said to me, as a lot of people do, ‘I have some songs and I’d like you to sing on them. Can I send you a song so you could check it out?’ I get a lot of these requests and didn’t think too much of it, but since I was just fresh back from a tour and a little bored, I decided to entertain the idea of listening to a song from Bob. After receiving an email with the first track that was attached to a video which more or less mapped out a murder storyline, I thought it was really different, and definitely creepy visually. And there was something very primitive and energetic to the attack of the music. It was very driven. I could feel it instantly. I knew this wasn’t a joke and wasn’t done half-assed. The music I was listening to was aggressive as a knife carving chunks of flesh off a body. Putting the music to a video caught my attention, immediately, as to Bob’s focus. I found it all really interesting. I have almost always worked from a storyline in my head for my lyrical inspiration and my own imagination, but never have started from the standpoint of lyrically scoring a storyline already laid out on video first, like scoring a film. That seemed really exciting to me as a writer as well as a vocalist. I emailed Bob back and told him I would love to be involved with making this album with him. So one thing led to another and we began writing and recording. We are very close to finishing the album and have enlisted the good people at Pledge Music to help us reach out to all of the fans who we hope will help us make this album a reality.”

Check out the track “Seeing Red” below. Is it worse than the new Warfather? Perhaps.

ABORTED Announce New Album, Spring Tour With KATAKLYSM

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The venerable Belgian CARCASS-clones known collectively as ABORTED have announced their eighth album, The Necrotic Manifesto. While a specific release date has yet to be set, the band has entered Hansen Studio under the guidance of producer and probably owner, Jacob Hansen. Hansen has worked with such diverse, but not necessarily good, acts as VOLBEAT, HEAVEN SHALL BURN, and MERCENARY. In addition, the band is set to tour North America later this year in April with the mighty KATAKLYSM.

GRIDLINK Disbands, Final Release Forthcoming

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GRIDLINK, Jon Chang’s much-debated, somewhat-loved spiritual successor to DISCORDANCE AXIS, has officially disbanded. This news comes straight from the source: Mr. Chang himself, who has decided to end the band before it ends itself, and right before the band’s final release, the upcoming Longhena. Set for release on February 19 through Handshake, Inc., this final release took the band over two years to write and record, and we’re sure it will be worth the wait. After this, it’s only the void…

BROKEN HOPE to Co-Headline Upcoming “The Best In Brutality” Tour with Oceano

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BROKEN HOPE is proud to announce their first major North American tour of 2014! “The Best in Brutality” tour, co-headlined by BROKEN HOPE and Oceano, will hit 27 cities in the U.S. and Canada in March and April. The tour will also include a premier stop at the New England Metal and Hardcore Festival on Thursday, April 17th.

The Best In Brutality” is a brand new, branded tour that is here to further bring underground death metal and metal to the forefront of today?s heavy metal offerings. In a world where metal fans are loyal to what they love and are always looking for something new, “The Best In Brutality” tour aims to bridge the gap each year with artists that indulge new and old fans of underground metal music. The first installment of “The Best In Brutality” tour features legendary death metal titans BROKEN HOPE and deathcore superstars Oceano co-headlining together, with support from Fallujah, Rivers of Nihil and Kublai Khan to round out this heavyweight line-up and tour.

The Best In Brutality Tour
03/18/14   Tempe, AZ @ Joe’s Grotto
03/19/14   Pomona, CA @ Glasshouse
03/20/14    Los Angeles, CA @ Whisky A Go Go
03/22/14    Lancaster, CA @ Industry Theater
03/23/14    San Francisco, CA @ DNA Lounge
03/25/14    Portland, OR @ Branx
03/26/14    Seattle, WA @ Studio 7
03/27/14    Vancouver, BC @ Biltmore Cabaret
03/28/14    Edmonton, AB @ Pawn Shop
03/29/14    Calgary, AB @ Golden Age Club
03/31/14    Winnipeg, MB @ Park Theater
04/01/14    Minneapolis, MN @ Skyway Theater
04/02/14    Milwaukee, WI @ The Rave
04/03/14    Des Moines, IA @ Vaudeville Mews
04/04/14    Joliet, IL @ Mojoe’s
04/06/14    Toronto, ON @ Hard Luck
04/08/14    Quebec City, QC @ Le Dagobert
04/09/14    Ottawa, ON @ Mavericks
04/11/14    Montreal, QC @ Underworld
04/12/14    Springfield, VA @ Empire
04/13/14    Wilmington, DE @ Mojo 13
04/15/14    Reading, PA @ Reverb
04/16/14    New York, NY @ Gramercy Theater
04/17/14    Worcester, MA @ Palladium – New England Metal and Hardcore Festival
04/18/14    Cleveland, OH @ Agora Ballroom
04/19/14    Columbus, OH @ Alrosa Villa

THE HAUNTED launches new track, “Eye Of The Storm”

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Swedish metal pioneers THE HAUNTED have launched their first single, “Eye Of The Storm“, featuring the band’s revamped line-up! Taken from their 3-song single, entitled Eye Of The Storm, this title track can be heard here:

Due out tomorrow (January 21st) in North America via Century Media Records, Eye Of The Storm will be available as a limited edition 7″ and as a digital single. THE HAUNTED is currently working on their upcoming studio album, expected for a summer 2014 release.

THE HAUNTED live
January 27-31–Miami, FL–70,000 Tons Of Metal cruise

THE KENNEDY VEIL: Full Album Now Streaming; Band Announces Spring Tour‏

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In celebration of its official unveiling tomorrow, today This Is Not A Scene is streaming Trinity Of Falsehood, the forthcoming new full-length from Sacramento death metal assassins, THE KENNEDY VEIL, in its entirety!

In other THE KENNEDY VEIL related news, the band kicked off what is expected to be a solid year of live assaults this past Friday. Following a special record release bash slated to take place this Tuesday on their home turf of Sacramento, THE KENNEDY VEIL will take on the Decimating The West Spring 2014 Tour. Presented by Rock the Nation USA, Unique Leader Records, Extreme Management Group, Inc. and RebelPyro Management, the ten-date journey will commence on February 27th and find the band sharing the stage with Arkaik and Lord Of War.

THE KENNEDY VEIL Live Assaults 2014
1/20/2014 Ouija Club – San Francisco, CA w/ Cyanic, Inanimate Existence, Alterbeast
1/21/2014 On The Y – Sacramento, CA *Official CD Release Show* w/ Arkaik, Lord Of War
2/27/2014 Rock Shop – San Jose, CA
2/28/2014 Jub Jub’s – Reno, NV
3/01/2014 Big T’s – Redmond, OR
3/02/2014 The Hop – Spokane, WA
3/04/2014 The Roxy – Denver, CO
3/05/2014 The Gasworks – Albuquerque, NM
3/06/2014 Joe’s Grotto – Phoenix, AZ
3/07/2014 Royal Dive – San Diego, CA
3/08/2014 Blacklight District – Long Beach, CA
3/09/2014 Slidebar – Fullerton, CA

Zakk Wylde (guitars, vocals) – Black Label Society

One of the hardest working musicians among us today took a few minutes out of his day to catch up with us here at www.SMMnews.com. My roots go deep with ZAKK WYLDE and it’s always a good conversation from start to finish. He and his BLACK LABEL SOCIETY brothers will unleash another new studio album to us in April, CATACOMBS OF THE BLACK VATICAN. We took a few minutes to talk before he did this season’s taping of THAT METAL SHOW…..here we go as Zakk answers the phone with, “hello there” in is best female-inspired hotel maid voice.

Q: Good Morning, how we doin there?

A: Doin ok man, is this Mark?

Q: This is Mark, what’s happenin brother, how ya been?

A: What are you doin brother?

Q: First and foremost I have to wish you a Happy Birthday!

A: Thank You very much brother!

Q: My wife had to remind me this morning, she said, “you have to wish him Happy Birthday today, don’t forget!”

A: (laughs) Ha Ha Ha! Mark the calendar Ha Ha Ha!

Q: I’ve been with ya forever but the wife had to remind me. I’m sure the warden has to remind you sometimes of things you forget.

A: Yeah (laughs)! It’s your birthday tomorrow (laughs)

Q: You’re in New York today, right?

A: We’re gonna be hookin up with Eddie Trunk, Jim, and Don and filming That Metal Show today so that will be comedy! Always good seeing those guys!

Q: Tell me what you got coming up for us in April.

A: We got a new album coming out called Catacombs Of The Black Vatican and the Black Label model will be firing up with the rest of the fellows. Before that I’m gonna be doin the HENDRIX EXPERIENCE TOUR coming up. Then we got this tour with our Canadian Black Label Family. We’re gonna roll with the Canadian Chapters then we have the Metal All Stars over in Europe with me rolling with a bunch of my buddies over there so that will be a good time.

Q: You have a busy year ahead of you!

A: Yeah, I’m looking forward to it! I like working you know! When you’re doing something you love it’s not work!

Q: That’s true! A few months ago you recorded the album so what was the process like with you and the guys sweating it out?

A: After we got off the Gigantour it was get the rest of the guys out here and we have 25 days to write the record. Everyday I’d be sitting out in the garage with my Marshall JCM2000 and it sounds gigantic like I’m playing Madison Square Garden and just keep digging and writing riffs. You know, put on a CARPENTERS CD, play it backwards and listen to all of the satanic messages to get inspired for some demonic riffs and off I go.

Q: (laughs) Love the reference man!

A: People will be going, ‘I never knew they were a satanic band.’

Q: Yeah, Zakk’s rolling with Jesus but has Satan in the passenger seat and Jesus tied up in the trunk.

A: (laughs) If you dig deep enough into Karen Carpenter’s music catalog you will discover she was a huge fan of Norwegian Black Metal.

Q: (laughs) Yeah, it wasn’t the guys in the bands that burned down that first church, it was really Karen Carpenter.

A: (laughs) The best part about that whole thing is you have people who actually believe it. I remember telling this one guy who asked me, ‘what’s this song Crazy Horse all about?’ And I said it’s about a Horse, that’s Crazy! (laughs) And I go No, it’s actually about Crazy Horse, the Indian. And he goes, ‘Oh, that’s what I thought.” And I said I was just doing some research on him and I was shocked that he was Irish Catholic. Then a special of JIM JONES comes on [TV] and I think, I can see how this happens (laughs).

Q: You’ve been watching the same channel as I have been lately on all those serial killers and cults.

A: Yeah, Jim Jones, Charlie Manson, and a bunch of these cult leader guys.

Q: Like that weirdo Warren Jeffs in Utah with like 84 wives or some crap like that.

A: Yeah! That guy! Totally, I was like going, ‘who buys this?’ I guess the whole thing is you try to date every woman but I guess it’s the if you ask 1,000 of them you’re bound to score with one of them. It’s unbelievable. (laughs). But anyways, the writing process of 25 days, just keep writing stuff and keep digging until you get what you’re happy with. I’ll jam it with CHAD (SZELIGA, drums) sitting next to me in a chair, then we’ll run it through a couple of times, and that’s it, done!

Q: Maybe that’s some of the magic you capture that you don’t spend a year twiddling with it.

A: I’ve done that in the past. I did it with OZ, like when we did NO MORE TEARS. It would be me, MIKE INEZ (bass) and RANDY CASTILLO (drums) and then the producers sitting in front of Randy’s kick drum and they’d say, ‘now what is the kick drum doing there?’ And it’s like, ‘the kick drum is doing exactly what Randy wants it to do.’ What are you going to do, sit in front of John Bonham’s drums when they’re recording THE OCEAN and say, “what is the kick drum doing here?” Just shut the fuck up and get out of the way! Just hit the record button and get out of the way. The whole magic is when you first record something. I remember when we did the demo for MAMA, I’M COMING HOME, Ozzy’s vocal performance came out amazing and then we were constantly trying to chase the demos afterwards. I kid you not! If you’re going to record something, just record it right the first time.

Q: That’s the spirit of it! Do you roll tape the whole time you’re in the studio so you capture that lightning in a bottle?

A: Yeah, it’s because we know the songs and it’s like, let’s record this take! We just put a click track up. I’ve been playing to a click forever. When you’re playing to a click track you’re swimming around it so we don’t sound like a robot. I remember reading something and one guy said, “this album almost killed us it was so much work.” And I go, “work?” Dude, were not roofing houses, you’re playing in a band. It’s a Rock Band, just stop! Obviously he never had a job before. It’s not rocket science when we go in the studio.

Q: It’s when you’re in the studio and you look at the drummer, or bassist and you know you got that something special from the performance and you know, ‘that was it!”

A: Yeah, and you know it! And it’s done and you move on to the next thing, I completely agree.

Q: How many songs are going to be on the album?

A: There’s 11 tunes on the record, then there’s 4 bonus tracks. Then I’m going to record 2 or 3 more when I get home. Some acoustic, solo versions of some stuff just so we have some extra bonus tracks laying around.

Q: How soon until we hear some music?

A: The single should be out next week.

Q: What’s it called?

A: MY DYING TIME!

Q: How would you describe the song?

A: It’s your typical Black Label, soothing, make out, grope music.

And Zakk continues the laughter and his honest approach to being himself and his music. This is another album I cannot wait for!

THE HARDROCKCORE

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