Friday, April 21, 2017

S is for Swallow the Sun

I had to listen to a lot of what I considered to be pretty ordinary doom/atmospheric metal bands before I found these guys. Swallow the Sun are Juha Ravio, Markus, Jamsen, Mikko Kotamaki, Aleksi Munter, Matti Honkonen and Juuso Raatikanen, and they hail from Jyvaskyla in Finland. In my limited experience, I reckon they are a cut above.

Formed in 2000, their most recent studio release was Songs From the North I, II ∧ III. (2015) The song I chose to share with you is Cathedral Walls (2012) and I think it showcases every thing good about metal and its diversity. Dare I say it's a beautiful and powerful song.

Thursday, April 20, 2017

R is for R-Genium

R-Genium is a symphonic power metal group from Volograd, Russia. Formed in 2007, they are Nikolay Litikov (keyboards), Aleksandr Radchenko (guitar), Dimitriy Slyozin (bass), Aleksandr Kalashnikov (drums) and Tatanya Shevchuk (vocals).

Their latest release is titled Wonderful Wonderful World and this track is called I Know Your Lie.

On September 3, 2008, I took my son, James, to his first metal gig. Him, one month shy of his 14th birthday, and me, an old headbanger, traveled to the Hordern Pavilion in Sydney to see Disturbed. Actually I was only vaguely aware of, or interested in Disturbed at the time. I was there to see my favourite band, POD, who were one of the support acts. The other was Alter Bridge.

James was a little overawed, by the atmosphere and the music, but he loved it, and it is one of my fondest memories of time spent with him. Sadly, James would no longer call himself a metal head, even though he still likes Metallica and enjoys a bit of metalcore here and there.

POD were great, and one of my greatest desires is to see them play a full show. One day...maybe they'll come back Down Under. As for Disturbed, they are now one of my faves.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Q is for Qantice

This is how this French band describes itself, and seriously, I would not dare add or subtract a word. 

"More than a progressive/power/symphonic metal band. Qantice is a universe where the epics of a sci-fi saga spread over a story and music, mixing ancient and modern instruments, fantasy atmospheres, and jaw dropping virtuosity, with no limit but the wildest imagination."

Way to talk yourselves up fellas. I don't really like progressive metal, or symphonic metal, nor is power metal my favourite genre, so it goes without saying that Qantice is not really my cup of tea.

This Parisian band may have been formed in 2002, or as late as 2009, depending on your source. The current regular members are Tony Beaufils, David Akesson, Yosh Ortias (violin), Aurelien Jouela, and Christine Lanusse.

It seems they hire singers on an album by album, tour by tour basis. Pellek is the vocalist on this track which is called Hoverland

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

P is for Pelican

I know what you're thinking...a metal band called Pelican? How very un-metal. Nevertheless this quartet has been labelled post-metal, and that is a genre of heavy metal. I told you I'd bring you plenty of variety.

Established in 2000, in Illinois, in the United States, the band consists of Trevor Debrauw (guitar), Bryan Herweg (bass), Larry Herweg (drums), and Dallas Thomas (guitar). Notice I didn't mention a vocalist? That's because they are essentially an instrumental group.

Their latest release is an EP called Cliff. This track is called Deny the Absolute.



Monday, April 17, 2017

O is for Oblivion Denied

The Crown Princess of Denmark is an Aussie. She was born in Tasmania. Why am I telling you this? Oblivion Denied is a Danish band and I am an Australian. My gut tells me that the Crown Princess is not a fan of heavy metal, but you never know. I mean if she listened to these guys she might just convert to headbanging. Stranger things have happened.

This duo, yes duo, (Thomas Wagner and Eske Meldgaard Krogh) hail from the city of Stautrup, and offer metal in the groove genre.

Ridin' High is the second single from their upcoming sophomore release titled Lack of Faith.

Both my children attended Dapto High School which held an annual talent show called MADD night. It was at one of these shows where I first heard Four Words to Choke Upon by Bullet for my Valentine. The impressive amateur performance was enough to turn me on to this Welsh pop metal band.

Sunday, April 16, 2017

N is for Nanowar of Steel

The name of this comedy metal band (technically known as parodic metal) is a play on words from the band Manowar. They hail from the Italian capital, Rome, and their clips and their are funny (as one might expect from a parodic metal band)

Formed in 2003, Nanowar of Steel's line-up is Mohammed Abdul (Valerio) on guitar and keyboard, Gattopancer666 (Edoardo) on bass and guitar, Uinona Rider (Alessandro) on drums and guitar - presumably not at the same time, Potowotminimak (Carlo Alberto) vocals and they have a guy called Baffo (Raffeolo) who is responsible for sound effects.

Their most recent release was a 2016 EP called Tour-Mentone Vol.1. This track I'm Heavy has a little fun with Pharrell William's hit I'm Happy.

Saturday, April 15, 2017

M is for Mortal Soul

For some reason there aren't many African metal bands. I only
found three to include in the A to Z. Mortal Soul are a metalcore band based in Nairobi, Kenya, and this instrumental track, Solace, has been running around in my head for weeks now. I love it. It is from their debut EP called Ashes in the Wind which was released in 2013.

Mortal Soul, who have been likened to Bullet for My Valentine, are Leon, Pete, Joey and Celeste. They got together in 2010. On their Facebook page they list their musical likes/influences, and five of my fave bands are in the list: Bullet for my Valentine, As I Lay Dying, Creed, Trivium and Metallica.

In 2001, I was staying in a motel in Newcastle, NSW, to where I travelled fortnightly for many years for work. I usually stayed in the same hotel, but for some reason I stayed at the Sovereign Inn in Mayfield on this occasion: one and only. They had music channels in their pay TV arsenal, and I was channel surfing when I hit one of them and saw a band which knocked me out.

In 2001 this band released their breakout, and most commercially successful LP to date, Satellite. The song I saw on that video channel was Alive. I soon owned a copy of Satellite, and now have every record they've made. To say I love POD, is a gross understatement.