The Ferrymen – A New Evil

Many are the songs that have travelled from guitarist/song writer Magnus Karlsson’s pen – sometimes his work has been very good, sometimes it has been underwhelming. Karlsson’s day-job, Primal Fear, has had their ups and downs with some really good records but also some – like their latest effort Apocalypse (2018) – that was a bit disappointing. The debut from Russell Allen & Jorn Lande, The Battle (2005) is one example of a project that came out brilliantly. Earlier this year, Karlsson released the third Starbreaker (featuring Tony Harnell) album, an uneven record and just a couple months later, the second album by The Ferrymen – Karlsson’s project with singer Ronnie Romero (Rainbow, CoreLeoni) and drummer Mike Terranna (Yngwie, Axel Rudi Pell, Beau Nasty and a million other projects) – shows up. The debut from 2017 was a good enough record without being spectacular so my expectations are of the medium kind. I hope I’m positively surprised, though.

Read the review

 

By e-tainment news reviews Posted in Metal

Michael Sweet – Ten

Michael Sweet is probably one of the hardest working musicians in the business right now. If there’s not a new album out by his main priority band Stryper, you can rest assured that there is or will be one out by either Sweet & Lynch or a solo album. What’s even more impressive is that he’s the main song-writer on all of those projects – and the quality is always amazingly high. The guy is a song writing machine – the song production from Michael seems to be without limits, there have been lo less than eleven records coming out from Sweet the last ten years, including the new solo album. Impressive to say the least, in a time when three, four years between albums is the norm. Since the music from Sweet’s different constellations have been so strong, I do expect a whole lot from him when a new album is due for release. His new record also sports some very interesting – and in some cases surprising – guests which makes the album even more intriguing.

Read the review

 

By e-tainment news reviews Posted in Metal

Skyblood – Skyblood

It’s been a long time coming! The word that singer Mats Levén has been working on his own project has been around for years now, but no news has surfaced – until now. Since Levén left Swedish Erotica in the early 90’s he have been the go-to-guy whenever an artist or a band was in need of quality singing, be it as a guest on a project or a replacement in a band – but we haven’t exactly been showered with albums from the man himself. There has been no use in complaining as whenever Levén put his vocal-cords over something, the project in question has always been bettered by it – and there has been a whole lot of different things for his CV during the years. Treat, Abstrakt Algebra, Yngwie Malmsteen, Therion, Krux, At Vance and Candlemass only to mention a few – and I need to state that I’m happy for it. Vocally, Treat, Yngwie and Therion never sounded better and in the case of Candlemass, Levén was the guy that made them interesting at all since I’ve never been much of a fan of that band.

Read the review

 

By e-tainment news reviews Posted in Metal

Opeth – In Cauda Venenum

Since Opeth decided to go all in on Prog-rock and lose the growling, much of the Metal in their music went the same way. Not that they’re not Metal anymore, they are, but the most brutal parts, the Death Metal in their music pretty much disappeared. So from Heritage (2011) and forward, that’s what Opeth has provided us with which in turn has become a watershed (sic!) among their fans. Some hate their new stuff, some prefer the new stuff and some – like me – love both. But I can understand the criticism, that old fans miss the heaviness and raw Metal because I miss it at times as well – my favorite album is still Watershed (2008). That said, Opeth still have their own sound and it’s not like they have stopped sounding like Opeth which in turn makes it hard to grasp how anyone can love the older albums and hate the newer ones.

Read the full review

 

By e-tainment news reviews Posted in Metal

Kobra And The Lotus – Evolution

Prevail I and II – from 2017 and 2018 respectively – are both great albums, albums I still listen to quite the bit. The first one was also the one that I discovered Kobra And The Lotus with. The albums contained everything that I love about Metal. Well-written songs, striking and memorable melodies, hooks, good musicians and a stellar singer, heaviness, rawness and catchy choruses. The bands first three albums, however, was more underwhelming when I checked them out afterwards. Not bad but they left a bit too much to be desired for me. Let’s say they weren’t really there yet. When the band now releases their 6th record, big expectations follows it – and a hope for the big break, both from me and the band itself. The first spin of the record turned out a disappointment for me. Not a crappy record but nothing really stuck and I missed the immediate hooks of the two predecessors. However, every record needs a few spins before the final judgement.

Read the full review

 

By e-tainment news reviews Posted in Metal

Liv Sin – Burning Sermons

I was – and still am – a big fan of Sister Sin so for me it was a huge disappointment when they decided to call it quits back in 2015. However, I always saw Sister Sin as singer Liv Sin’s band. Unfair to the others, probably, especially as they were the main song writers. But Liv was without a doubt the focal point and the one that always was on their album covers. Also, Liv (Jagrell) Sin is one of the most intense and amazing front(wo)men I have ever had the pleasure watching on a stage. As a big fan of hers, I looked forward to her first solo outing. Follow Me came out in 2017 but unfortunately, the album was something of a disappointment for me. Yes, Liv sang as awesomely aggressive as usual but there was flaws in the material.

Read the full review

 

By e-tainment news reviews Posted in Metal

Hammerfall – Dominion

What’s left to say about Swedish metal-preservers Hammerfall that hasn’t already been said? My relationship with the band is that I have never been as a fan and I even thought they were a dorky band when they began. That said, they have always stood up for Heavy Metal and no matter how much crap they have been given from the Metal community, they have never given in or apologized for their music or looks. They do have my respect for that. I have never hated them and I have always thought that the harsh words that has been vomited their way from rockers were never justified for – totally unfair, actually. Because love them or hate them, do give them the credit for standing up for Metal at a time when no one else did.

Read the full review

 

By e-tainment news reviews Posted in Metal

Destruction – Born to Perish

In my late teens/early twenties – we’re talking 1987 – 1990 something – I started reading foreign Hard Rock magazines – and with foreign I mean non-swedish. My musical tastes back then was Hard Rock, Melodic Rock, AOR and Metal, nothing harder than Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Saxon, Accept and such. Thrash and Speed Metal wasn’t even on my map. I even thought Metallica were nothing but noise. The fact that I read those mags back to back no matter if I liked the band in question or not – I still do that btw – is the fact that I have at least some knowledge about all those Thrash, Speed, Death and Black Metal bands, many of which I still almost haven’t heard a note of. But due to Metallica’s black album and the video for Slayer’s “Seasons In The Abyss” my musical taste started changing in the early 90’s, mixing up my original taste with bands such as Metallica, Megadeth, Slayer and Testament – although still leaving German Thrash acts such as Sodom, Kreator, Rage and Destruction on the way-side.

Read the full review

 

By e-tainment news reviews Posted in Metal

Ardours – Last Place on Earth

Gothic, symphonic Metal with a female vocalist, is that something that sounds familiar to anyone? Personally, I have a hard time getting intrigued when I read about bands in that genre. Many are the bands that have come to my notice throughout the years and I have listened to most of the bands that has been recommended to me. Most of them are bands that necessarily aren’t pure crap but very few of them has remained in my musical consciousness. Some I have quite liked while listening but none of them has lasted. With Ardours we get yet another one and since Gothic, symphonic Metal apparently isn’t my thing at all, I took on this record with a bit of skepticism although I really tried my best to have an open mind. Because, you’ll never know, this album just might be the one that will change my mind.

Read the full review

 

By e-tainment news reviews Posted in Metal

Sascha Paeth’s Masters Of Ceremony – Signs of Wings

Sascha Paeth. If you are at least a little well versed in Metal – and especially Power Metal – that name should ring at least a smaller kind of bell. With that I mean that even if you’re not overly familiar with the guy, something in you should go “I’m sure I have seen that name somewhere”. Sascha Paeth is mostly known from his production duties that includes acts such as Rhapsody, Angra, Kamelot, After Forever and Edguy but also as a guitarist with his own band Heaven’s Gate who released their debut album back in 1989. Today, Paeth is very much Tobias Sammet’s go-to guy in Avantasia where he has helped out with both production, engineering and mixing on all albums plus the fact that he’s that project’s guitar player, both in the studio (where he also contributes with keyboards and some bass) and live. As a guy not very big on European Power Metal, it was through Avantasia – which I love and do not consider Power Metal anymore – I got acquainted with Paeth’s name.

Read the full review

 

By e-tainment news reviews Posted in Metal