Thursday, 21 January 2016
Leather Heart are a classic heavy metal band from Madrid (Spain) formed in 2008, now they just released their first full length called Comeback, the evolution and improvements in the sound is more than evident, guitars now have more presence and the instrumental parts in the album are sophisticated and you couldn’t believe this is a debut album at all, these guys have the experience of bands with more than three albums in their backs.
In terms of composition in general the tracks got a more complex structure with changes of rhythm in songs like The Crow or the tittle track Comeback to name a few, and always moving between Judas Priest and Queensryche but with touches of Dokken at some point and an undeniable influence of Dio and Glenn Hughes on the voice, you can check the awesome cover of Black Sabbath hit Danger Zone.
Generally the album moves in a mid to fast paced tracks, songs like Destiny is a clear highlight of the band’s sound and also is one of the best of the album as the mid paced pounding drums mixes in harmony with a perfect structure, catchy 80s revival also seen in Rock n Roll Soul with a hard rocker essence very well created and a headbanging second half of the track.
Depths of space and Hopeless Sinner are two of the best composed tracks as mid tempo in crescendo gems; its also good to mention the track Leather Heart is re recorded for the first album, with a better production and more presence of the instrumentals.
Leaving the best for the last, Restless, the riff is going to take you straight to the mid 80s and just the vocal parts are gonna blow out your mind, great job on the structure and the details of the guitars, continuing with the ballad For You, with good acoustic parts with ascending power being very intense, epic!
Last shot and my favourite is the tittle track Comeback, got a sophisticated structure full of changes of rhythm going fast and slow surprisingly effective, and also combining the best sides of the album, the epic sensation and the passion and intensity of the mid tempo ballads, truly a masterpiece.
Taking the full concept of this record in one word it has to be a masterpiece and one of the best english sung albums ever made in Spain, they improved to a crystal clear production, Comeback got the power and the glory, its headbanging at all times rememoring the golden mid 80s inspiration. be aware of these guys, this is only the beginning of a band that bounds to rule the NWOTHM very soon!
Friday, 25 December 2015
Ambush is a Swedish heavy metal band formed in 2013 creating a classic Heavy Metal style melting power metal touches; they soon released their first EP Natural born killers, that catapulted them on the first line of NWOTHM bands last year following with their first full length Firestorm.
Now Ambush just released their second full length called Desecrator,
And what to say about it, actually no words could describe better this album
As a pure heavy metal masterpiece, its not only the best material they’ve created,
It's a demonstration of how one of the new wave of traditional heavy metal bands
can be at the same page as giants like Accept or Judas Priest, because we all need to understand
a new age of metal is arising with loads of new bands, and i'm proud of these bands
that keep the essence of heavy metal like the metal gods did long time ago.
Saying this, lets focus on Ambush, these guys combined clearly Accept instrumentals
With impulsive touches and power speed metal vocal style (sharp and clean, mid and
Superhigh pitched skills), all this combined with catchy choruses that will make the crowd
Crazy singing along, good examples are Possesed by evil, with galloping riffs and a perfect
Shot for live performance, or Night of the defilers, with genuine Accept structure on guitars
And halfordish vocal style, just brilliant.
Master of the sea and Chain reaction combines the same key points but with a remarkable vocal interpretation, and awesome drum shots on the verses, as Desecrator, the tittle track, bring you a the best guitar Performances of the album, just keep attention to the bridge and chorus guitar details, outstanding.
Southstreet brotherhood take the hard rocker style to light, also with a catchy chorus and a crescendo structure, as Rose of the dawn and Faster develop the strong and high speed and impulsive metal, that's how to deliver the power and glory of true metal, but just leaving the best for the last track,The Seventh seal, as a slow to mid to fast paced masterpiece that goes in crescendo developing a solid and powerful vocal capacity, everything on this track is fascinating, every sound is clockwork synchronized and in harmony, all this to explode at the end with a fast paced ending of pure speed metal, just perfect, honestly will drive you crazy if you are a classic heavy metal fan, just wow.
Overall Desecrator by Ambush is their best work, with more solid compositions and better structured choruses, it's also really hard to improve but looking at their evolution as a band, they are on the top and fresh to continue at this level, and i could say they are one the best albums of the year, and the best word to describe it is Masterpiece.
9,5 / 10
Ludwig Sjöholm - Bass
Linus Fritzson - Drums
Olof Engkvist - Guitars
Adam Hagelin - Guitars
Oskar Jacobsson - Vocals
Released by High Roller Records
Thursday, 10 September 2015
Finally the long awaited full length from the German Thrashers Running death is out, full of improvements from their last EP Call of extintion (2012), read that review following this link.
What the listener will notice right after the first intro called It begins is the high level of technical performance on the instrumentals and that important progressive thrash feeling, Hell on Earth is just about this stuff, combining fast and mid paced sections with an excellent job by guitars and drums leaving vocals attacking with a high pitched harsh power; continuing with Psycho on the same line of fast pace but clearly more modern influence combined with strong mid tempo verses, slightly darker and melodic at some points.
Remote Controlled develops diverse riff combinations including palm muted galloping and melodic links with verses, creating headbanging parts and building a good chorus, clearly improving what we've seen on this album up to now, Simon nailed it on this one on the vocal interpretation, continuing with Close minded, reminding to those genuine Metallica riffs, being a clear influence for the band, strong palm muted shots and really good lyrics.
Raging nightmare explodes suddenly in a galloping headbanging bomb, that's pure moshpit thrash on fire, right in the middle of the album this is what a metalhead is waiting for, outstanding job on guitars and vocals, noticing the excellent production here is clearly better than their previous jobs, crystal clear drum details and bass performance, one of the best shots of Running death.
The instrumental acoustic track Deludium opens to Mercenary, creating an awesome crescendo straight away from the first second developing a mid thrash metal mayhem including progressive shots on the guitars, on the line of the general band's style serving as a good highlight of the album; linking to Pray for death, this time creating a doom/evil sound and accelerating the machinery to good speed thrash metal territories, it will call the attention of the listener in terms of composition.
But at my point of view the best is yet to come with the last three tracks of the album, starting with Reduced as a rhythm changing powerful shot, where palm muted and melodies dance around a pure thrash metal machine on drums, denoting a very intense vocal performance and enjoyable instrumentals all over the song; continuing without rest with the tittle track Overdrive as an old school thrash metal anthem creating an awesome job on drums including double pedal parts, with an insuperable Simon growling and singing in clean and sharp parts.
The last and best track of this album goes to I see a Fire, as the increscendo is being built from the darkness and evil style in quasi doom metal influence but soon exploding in the best riff of the album using palm muted parts in high sophisticated sections combined with excellent drum details, changing pace continuously until the epic end.
All in all Overdrive is a clear improvement and the best album up to date by Running Death, the production is crystal clear and the compositions are sophisticated, becoming a top class album by a professional thrash metal band.
8 / 10
Tuesday, 28 July 2015
Blizzard hunter started in 2006 in Peru as Blizzard, releasing one demo in 2011 but soon to change name to Blizzard hunter from 2014, forging their first EP followed by this first full length Heavy metal to the vein.
Blizzard hunter combines a straight forward power metal with old school speed metal with changing rhythms and complex creations, guitars work fast and effective, melting hard rocking melodies into progressive feelings, really well harmonized with the rest of the band, vocals develop a mainly high pitched and clean style, being in control of every note, drawing a large range from mid, sharp and aggressive to powerful and ultra high pitched screams.
Conqueror of destiny is a good example of instrumental sign of the band as I'm on my way explodes In a headbanging shot, awesome voice and really well composed being on of the highlights of the album.
Heavy metal to the vein kicks in with some reminiscences of US metal, very well played on the vocals creating epic melodies and developing a good interpretation, followed by heart of fire (vampire hunter song), this one my friends is one of those tracks that are considered masterpiece, note the perfect mixture between Queensrÿche, iron maiden and US metal, the glorious virtue that Metal Inquisitor was successful is made as standard for blizzard hunter, it will call the attention of the listener to play again and again.
Nemesis (feel my strength) is where you can feel how wide can be the vocal range of this guy, as a mid fast tempo track goes from sharp mid pitched and very well played voice, on the line of Bruce Dickinson, but going beyond with clean and ultra high pitched scream "feel my strength", instrumentals works in harmony and demonstrates good palm muted and technical sections remembering those guitar duels by Tipton and downing from Judas priest; worked effectively with double pedal on drums.
Ghost Rider starts a bit as a break and more relaxed anthem with some more melodic and epic hints but going in crescendo with a enjoyable instrumental and addictive chorus, as the murder bangs like a pure old school true metal with even some doom drippings on the verses, another highlight of the band's sound, linked with My revenge, forging classic speed thrash metal feelings, ready to break your necks showing the aggressive side of the band with clear Tyran Pace influence on the vocals, one of the best of the album.
Following the speed pace The Joke bangs like a sudden speed metal attack, all you know you'll find yourself banging your head, remarkable instrumental performance all over and leading to the last track The final judgement, absolutely amazing job on the bass and overwhelming galloping riffs with good details on the drums performance as the vocals follow a relaxed but powerful melodic line.
What a great surprise with this debut album by Blizzard hunter, definitely the band did an awesome job, managing a really professional sound with an excellent production, every
member's performance is absolutely virtuous, if you are fan of Judas priest, Queensrÿche or iron maiden, (on the level of bands like Striker, Alltheniko or Air Raid) this will be a must have album!
8,5 / 10
Lucho Sanchez Guitars
Lalo "Indú" Salas Bass
Lalo "Indú" Salas Bass
Toño "Wild Rocker" Rojas De la Cuba Guitars
Sebastian "Dragon" Palma Vocals
Monday, 20 July 2015
Steel Raiser is a power heavy metal band from Italy founded in 2006 and releasing one demo and three full lengths to date, Race of steel (2008), Regeneration (2013) and Unstoppable (june 2015) with Iron Shield Records.
Steel raiser is feed from the flames of 80s speed metal strength and 90s power metal melodies, they got very much a combination of influences from Judas Priest, Gamma Ray and Grave Digger; impulsive speed metal always perfectly melted with strong German true metal, guitars are forceful using lots of palm muted patterns as the drums in general work awesomely well in harmony with the rest of instrumental, but the key point of this band is the vocalist, the vocal range is immense, from low sharp with hints of Udo style through clean mid pitched sides on the melodic power metal style, and surprising the listener with sharp high pitched screams on the Halford line that will blow out your mind.
The album begins straight with a fast paced and headbanging tune, really well done on the verses, as the word Inexorable in the chorus will bring your fists up in the air, truly one of the highlights of the band's sound, as Decapitator explodes with chorus as intro, mid to fast paced shot on the strategy line of German metal style, remembering Grave Digger moments, as they use an addictive chorus really effectively.
Fast as the light continues the metal madness as they develop interesting power metal melodies with a remarkable job on the vocal performance, clean and sharp changing constantly, creating a melodic chorus, long and effective; as one of the best tracks begin, Scent of madness, creates a really catchy riff that harmonize perfectly with the vocal performance, that in fact is the best of the album, developing melodic clean parts and evolving to a sharp and very well played theatrical sections to create another effective chorus, all adorned with synth violins, masterpiece guys!
Continuing with the same strategy, Dreaming of you kicks in with nice palm muted riffs and potent vocals that mixes with falsetto parts forging a dark atmosphere, following the power metal based chorus patterns, and continuing the action with Thousand blades, with airs of US metal in every note, epic and headbanging track from the first second.
Unstoppable takes out the fury, Judas priest style, to develop aggressive verses and a long restless chorus, guitars are powerful and so the whole track, continuing with another catchy shot Mole breaker, mixing grave digger and Wasp, really the chorus reminds me to Battlecruiser, but all on all another top shot from Steel Raiser, with probably the most addictive chorus of the band, following a simple and effective formula, Mole breaker!!
The last tears is a mid tempo ballad that introduces clear patterns from gothic sounds, on the vocal vibrato and also on melodies, giving a power -gothic metal touch, and finally the last track is the second version of Scent of madness, which is the same excellent song we listened before but with a change in the solo, the bassist come into scene to perform a more than prodigious bass solo, outstanding in every note.
Steel raiser new album is forged from the true metal and is gonna keep you banging your head from the beginning, compositions are rich and different in every song which is something great because many bands use to keep a formula in every song but Steel Raiser managed to give a different touch in every track of the album, taking influences from priest to maiden and gamma ray, jag panzer or accept, Steel Raiser are back more solid and stronger than before, with an excellent production for what can be one of the best albums of this year.
8,5 / 10
Salvo Pizzimento Bass
Gianluca Rossi Bass, Guitars
Antonio Portale Drums
Giuseppe Seminara Guitars
Alfonso Giordano Vocals
Thursday, 25 June 2015
Few weeks ago I had the chance to interview Cobra, one of the new true metal bands that called my attention as one of the most promising new bands of the metal scene worldwide, so after having a well established second album and having toured Europe, it was an inflection point in their career to the top, and obviously Metalheads Union is not gonna miss the opportunity of having a chat with these guys.
If you want to check their second album review follow this link
Hi guys how are you? Thank you all for your time!
Hi Daniel, nice to be in contact again. Thanks for your interest in making a second interview to us.
First of all how were the band beginnings? Why did you choose Cobra as your band's name?
Cobra was born ten years ago back in 2005 when Nito and Pochuck decided to create and play heavy metal band in a rough and aggressive way. They chose Cobra as the name of the band because of an old anime they use to watch as kids. Cobra is a lethal name, such as our intentions with rock and roll music.
Have Cobra evolved in any way from the first album to the second album? How could you describe the media feedback for both releases?
Definitely. Cobra evolved in creating a solid album of heavy metal. This means not only having good songs, but delivering a unity of heavy metal: music, lyrics, artwork, ideas, and put together in order to have a blasting experience once you put play to the record.
When “Lethal Strike” was released in 2011, it didn’t have very much media attention as “To Hell” did last year and even nowadays did. The difference was that our first album had a poor promotion and distribution work. Now we are very conscious about the results of working those aspects of an album release.
You got a very aggressive style even when adding that strong hard rock drippings, how could you describe the band's style and what makes it different of most of the new traditional heavy metal bands?
Thanks for the words. I could define Cobra’s style as a very intense heavy metal rock and roll music. About what makes us different between these new traditional bands, we don’t even consider ourselves part of these tag. We are only focused about been ourselves playing the kind of music we like. We don’t want to be like the bands we admire, we want to be as relevant as them with our music.
Which bands are the most influent for you? I'd like to know your individual preferences.
I like artists that are intense with the music they make. The ones that comes to my mind right now would be Earth, The Stooges, Nirvana, Judas Priest, Black Sabbath, The Wailers and Led Zeppelin.
How is the true metal scene in Peru? Now that you played in Keep it true, how do you feel about it? How did the fans react to your sound?
Peruvian metal scene is small, very underground if it’s compared to the European one. Our scene is very unorganized and informal but things are changing to better. Here the concerts are with bands of different metal styles, so it’s common for bands and bangers from here to be into heavy, black, death, doom or even psych and punk music.
Keep It True was a great experience. We never had that sensation to play in front of so many die hard heavy metal maniacs. People there really knows what metal music is about, I think they reacted very well, they could get the vibe and intention of the band. After playing there, I only want more of this.
The vocals that you do are really high pitched some times, changing from sharp to clean patterns, how do you manage to keep your voice while on tour?
I try to avoid cold drinks, smoke and cover always my neck during the tour. Although it’s enjoyable to be on the road having a good time, the best thing is always take care of your instrument.
Tell me a special memory of this European tour.
Waking up during different moments of the day and night inside the van while everyone else was sleeping. Looking at the other guys, our tour manager, the highway, the scenery and realizing that everything was real, that was actually happening. Living like that was everything I ever wanted, it was a great feeling.
Are you working on the new album? If so, could you anticipate any information? What could the fans expect for the next full length?
Right now we are writing and creating new songs. We already know which songs will be part of our third album, but now we are working in two different productions. I hope soon we can have more news about it.
Any chance to visit the UK? What about Japan? If you could choose a country to play, which one could it be?
Actually, we received a couple of offers to visit UK but distances didn’t match to go there. After the European tour we made contact with people involved in festivals and stuff not only in Europe but also in Asia, so let’s make things happen.
If I could choose a country I would like to play in Japan, like Deep Purple did in 1972.
Finally guys could you send a message to your fans?
Beware to our next move, it might be lethal for your mind.
Thanks brothers and hope to see you soon on stage!
Thanks to you Daniel for giving us a space on your site.
Friday, 29 May 2015
Toxic Shock is a thrash metal / crossover band from Belgium formed in 2004 and releasing their first full length in 2013 called "Daily Demons"and now they made a split album with Iron Reagan in 2015, Iron Reagan, from Virginia, started the metal path in 2012 an released two full lengths in 2013 "Worse than dead" and "The tyranny of will" in 2014.
The split begins with Toxic Shock, taking the aggression to the next level creating generally fast paced old school thrash rhythms, with multiple changes of pace in the survivalist, delivering harsh and sharp mid high pitched vocals, very much influenced by bands like Exodus or Razor, well demonstrated in Singalong letdown, strong and fast with that visceral feeling of the mid 80s true thrash metal, as their top shot kicks in, Monday is cancelled, with clear punk drippings on the verses and obviously headbanging from start to finish.
Iron Reagan also develop that thrash metal of non-stop headbanging, forging a late 80s,90s thrash metal, more melodic and high pitched on the vocals, guitars are rich in composition, more influenced by D.R.I., Municipal Waste, or even Gama Bomb: all three tracks are breathtaking and ultra fast, demonstrating a full power thrashing madness in every note, great job.
Overall a very effective split of two true thrash metal new bands, while toxic shock delivers headbanging old school traditional shots, iron Reagan forged a bay area thrash with ultra fast atomic bombs, the whole split is well produced and even though its not on the sophisticated or technically complex side, will make you break your necks from the very first second.
8 / 10
Rob Skotis Bass
Ryan Parrish Drums
Landphil Hall Guitars
Mark Bronzino Guitars
Tony Foresta Vocals