This week a group of reunited glam rockers, a band that has a “Fever,” and finally the return of Juliet’s Vice and their latest video.
Reunited New York rockers Grimm Jack explore the Hollywood lifestyles of Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton and the other West Coast tabloid queens for the single “Damned.” The track appears on the band's recent three-song EP of the same name. Immediately we are greeted with “Lemmy” style cranium accessories and liberal use of “Sunset Strip” and “Hollywood” in their lyrics. This song would have been perfect back in the day if Hillbilly Jim and The Junkyard Dog had they ever wrestled as part of a WWF Wrestlemania event. Of course, if I remember correctly, both of these guys were “good guys” so that could never happen, but if it had (and this song was around) it would have been a perfect.
We've been on a mission to get every band's favorite pit stories from live shows, and this week The Dogs Divine shares the following story of an unexpected on-stage dance session:
In 2008 we were doing a show in Melbourne Florida...and this girl from the crowd in a really short skirt and extremely tight top gets on stage. At first she just kinda starts dancing in one place, shaking her hips kinda thing. Well there is this large group of Military MPs that are shipping out in the next day or so to Afghanistan, so they are getting their party on before they leave, well these guys really start encouraging this chick to give them a show.
So, next thing I know, while we are in the middle of a song I might add, she starts going into this choreographed type of moves, I mean it looked like it came out of that movie Flash Dance. I mean spins and kicks and jumping and just all over the stage, from one end to the other. So much so the guitarist and I kinda had to move as far back as possible and basically hug the amps to keep out of her way and avoid a collision.
So we finish the song and it was one of those spots in the set where we just would do a four count on the high hat and go right into another song. So she stays on stage and starts this routine again. So finally we finish the second song and ask her, or rather guide her of stage.
Be sure to check back in again next Tuesday as we continue to share more mosh pit stories.
Every Monday we take a break from the news to highlight three lesser known bands that deserve a moment in the spotlight and can help expand your metal horizons.
Last year we showcased three side projects from black metal icon Ihsahn, but there are plenty of musicians from throughout metaldom who have a host of additional projects outside their most well-known bands. This week we’ll take a look at bands covering a range of sounds from the members of Borknagar, Katatonia, and Samael that all show a different side than what fans may be expecting from their favorite musicians.
While many may be aware that Vintersorg from Borknagar has had his own self-titled, folk leaning and clean singing focused project for years, it’s not as well known that he was also involved in a folk metal project called Otyg prior to his solo releases.
Otyg had a very ‘90s, proto-metal feel as the musicians were starting to explore the boundaries of the genre, and is a must hear if you want to explore the roots of folk metal or are into the early works of bands like Amorphis or Borknagar. The band released two full-length albums titled “Älvefärd” and “Sagovindars Boning” before going on hold indefinitely. The music is a little on the lo-fi side and not quite as bombastic or epic as the intricately arranged folk and orchestra stuff that has come out of metal in the interim, but just listen to that atmosphere!
Slaughter was (and still is for some) a guilty pleasure. A band spawned from the eighties, Mark Slaughter and company enjoyed major, but brief success with both “heavy” tracks as well as the all important power ballad. It wasn’t always pretty, but it was always Slaughter!
Formed in Las Vegas, Slaughter came in at the height of the glam metal movement. Mark Slaughter (vocals/guitar) and Dana Strum (bass) from Vinnie Vincent Invasion started Slaughter and recruited guitarist Tim Kelly and drummer Blas Elias. In 1990 they released the album “Stick It to Ya,” yielding immediate success with singles “Up All Night”, “Fly to the Angels”, and “Spend My Life.” Soon after they recorded the song “Shout it Out” for the movie soundtrack, “Bill and Ted’s Bogus Journey,” once again receiving heavy airplay on the radio and video plays on MTV. More...
The Cult has released the official music video for their new single, "For The Animals," from their forthcoming album 'Choice Of Weapon.’ More...
Every Tuesday we share metal show mosh pit stories from bands and fans coming from every genre and corner of the globe. This week we have the following story from Illinois based act DaiTribe about a giant in the pit getting a taste of his own medicine:
Pits and stage diving has changed a lot in the last 20 yrs. First pit I saw was during my time in TX. Brutal and intense circles with a lot of surfing. Back then, you'd see them ignite like they'd been waiting all their lives to unleash and explode. I'd look out from the stage and see hundreds of kids having a great night. If someone got knocked down, someone would get picked up. The mosh pits would police themselves and everyone looked out for each other in the truest sense of brotherhood.
Fast forward to today where the spirit is there, it just seems like the outcome is very different. You see these giant guys in the center knocking down people half their size. The Brazilian style pits where the circle kicks rule and seems like most people aren't paying attention. Now, I took my hits back in the day, it was gonna happen. You might catch an elbow or a fist here and there but it wasn't intentional.
So, the funniest thing I ever saw was at a show and this girl had to be about five feet and it's the middle of the set. She's thrashing and holding her own and some giant guy who's at least a foot taller, goes against the pit and she lowers her head and nails him in the gut! At first I thought she'd knocked herself out cause she flew back about 4-5 feet before the pit caught her and put her upright again. I'd been watching this guy for a couple of songs and it was clear that he was way too out of it and just trying to hurt anyone he could. Coolest thing I saw all night cause she pretty much leveled him!
DaiTribe is out now with the new album "Epochalypse A.D." and recently released a new music video for the song "I Hate Me". You can also check out a track-by-track video for "Epochalypse A.D." at this location.
Check back in again next week for another dose of pit stories from fans and metal musicians.
We've done a Connecticut scene report before, but the volume of bands coming from this third-smallest U.S. state is incredibly big - so today it merits another look. Connecticut has a long history with metal music, due to the vast number of colleges and radio stations promoting the scene in the eighties and beyond. The Constitution state also has a rich hardcore history that ties in with the metal scene, which dates back prior to the existence of that legendary club The Anthrax in South Norwalk. The classic metal and hardcore shows played there became the subject of the book "Everybody's Scene: The Story of Connecticut's Anthrax Club," which was penned by Chris Daily. Check out that book trailer here. Even the fabulous Forced Reality (a band with members of the now disbanded Skeletal Ambitions) has reformed and is playing oi punk rock again, recently doing a few shows down south. More...
This past week, MetalUnderground.com has largely (and irritably for some,) been discussing the latest Opeth album, "Heritage," which has divided fans with its blend of seventies inspired prog rock. To understand why some fans are so upset about the direction, perhaps it would be best to take a look at the history of the group. Opeth was formed in 1990 in the Swedish capital by vocalist David Isbgerg and guitarist Mikael Åkerfeldt after an argument with former band mates of Isbergs. They soon recruited bass player Nick Döring, drummer Anders Nordin and a second guitarist named Andreas Dimeo, though Dimeo and Döring left the group after their first performance. A number of lineup changes would follow, most notably the inclusion of guitarist Peter Lindgren (who originally joined as a bass player) and the departure of Isberg, with Åkerfeldt taking over vocal duties, in addition to keeping his role as a guitar player. They soon earned themselves a record deal with the then newly formed Candlelight Records and recorded their debut album, "Orchid" in the Spring of 1994, though due to distribution problems, it wouldn’t see a release until the next year. The album was positively received, with critics praising their blend of death metal with acoustic guitars and harmonies.
They soon followed "Orchid" with their sophomore effort, "Morningrise," which garnered even higher praise than "Orchid," allowing them to embark on a tour of the United Kingdom and a large Scandinavian trek with Cradle Of Filth. The growing interest in the band led them to sign with German label, Century Media, who released the groups first two albums in the United States (they had previously only been available in Europe.) Soon after the signing however, the band first parted with bassist Johan DeFarfalla, before splitting with Nordin, leaving Mikael Åkerfeldt as the sole original member. The first band first hired a new drummer named Martin Lopez before recording their third album, "My Arms, Your Hearse," which featured Åkerfeldt performing bass duties, though they soon found a permanent bassist in Martín Méndez. "My Arms, Your Hearse" continued Opeths tradition of releasing albums that were more acclaimed than their last, with many ranking it among their finest albums. More...
It’s Friday and we have new videos from I AM I, Dirty Glory, Jaded Heart, and a very special video clip from Dee Snider. More...
Every week we continue our ongoing quest to get the best pit stories from metal shows. This week Dying Fetus checked in with us to share the following story from the Metal Alliance tour about meeting the "chicken guy" at Sonar in Baltimore:
The Metal Alliance tour came to Baltimore at a club called Sonar. The tour had been going well and the pits were killer for our set. We all come from Maryland so playing Sonar was always a show to look forward to.
When ever you play at Sonar or in the Baltimore/Washington D.C. area you see the chicken guy. I don’t know this guys name but I know his look. He wears a chicken costume to every show in the area. The chicken guy is killing it in the pit for all our shows. You cant miss the guy crowd surfing. This guy even gets applause from the crowd. Way to be chicken guy cant wait to see you again!
Dying Fetus will be releasing new album "Reign Supreme" this coming June 19th, 2012 via Relapse Records. The band will also be hitting the road throughout the entire summer, icluding an appearance at Maryland Death Fest as well as the "18 Nights of Blood Tour" in North America with label mates Revocation and Six Feet Under.
Dying Fetus will also be on a headlining tour of Europe which includes appearances at the "Copenhell Festival" in Copenhagen, "Hell Fest" in France, the "With Full Force" festival in Germany, "Sevilla Rock Festival" in Spain and the "Getaway Rock Fest" in Sweden. You can check out studio footage from the band's time recording new material, as well as find a listing of upcoming tour dates, at this location.
Be sure to check back in again next Tuesday as we share more mosh pit stories from metal bands around the world.
Just across the causeway from Singapore sits the Malaysian “small town” of Johor Bahru, though its population of nearly 1.5 million shows us just how the Western definition of “small town” differs from that of deepest, densest Asia. Thanks to its proximity to the Lion City, just about an hour’s drive away including the time it takes to cross the border on a good day, JB presents a great opportunity for bands touring in Asia to cross another country off their list of places played without traveling too far, and to get an excellent introduction to the Malaysian scene. Here are three hardworking bands currently plying their trade in the southern gateway to the Malay Peninsula. More...
The month of May marks a couple of pivotal moments in the history of one of America's most classic power/thrash bands, Metal Church. It was in May of 1984 that the band played its first gig at the D&R Theatre in Kurdt Vanderhoof's native Aberdeen, Washington. It was also in May, nearly seven years to the day, that the metal world lost one of its most iconic metal singers - original Metal Church vocalist David Wayne. In this homage to the Seattle band, we will look at the history of this venerable old school band and how it ties in with so many other acts while fulfilling its history. We will also bring you the rich history that Metal Church and all of its offshoots have lived through. Because, with Metal Church there is six degrees of separation from several other groups.
Back in the late seventies, Aberdeen's son Kurdt Vanderhoof was living in the San Francisco bay area. He played for a hardcore punk band by the name of The Lewd. As he started listening to the early prototypes of the British invasion of metal, he had an epiphany. Kurdt decided he'd rather start playing metal music, so he began talks with a few of the members of another San Francisco act - Leviathan. Together they formed Anvil Chorus - The Church of Metal, later shortening it. The rest of Leviathan left and formed Vienna. More...
Steven Adler (ex-Guns N’ Roses) is back with his new band named Adler and a new single titled “The One You Hated.” The band insists that the band is about a man/woman relationship and not what we all assume: heroin. Of course, I guess it could be about Axl Rose as well, or maybe the song is about Steven from the mindset of Celebrity Rehab’s Dr. Drew. Either way you look at it, Steven has an impressive memory catalog to pull inspiration from… More...
Colombia just might be one of the forefathers of the extreme metal scene and it may have influenced some of the most nihilistic groups to come out of Europe. Yes, this South American land of extremes may have been one of the catalysts for the Scandinavian scene, ushering in a whole horde of sick and twisted metal bands. You may think that's an incredulous statement to make and a mighty tall order, but wait. There's a true story I am going to recount for you now.
Back in 1992, a few Colombian metal fans/musicians went up from Stavanger, Norway to a record shop in Oslo owned by Oystein Aarseth (better known as Euronymous). As they were going through the releases, they struck up a conversation with Euronymous about the country they were from, black metal in general and their respective bands. Euronymous became animated and said "Two bands from your city of Medellin influenced Mayhem's sound."
"Parabellum and Reencarnacion were a few of the true bands that shaped us. They captured a hellish environment and represented a true hardcore, evil sound that we emulated in the band."
Spoken by Euronymous himself a year before he died in infamy, and put in Spanish on the liner notes of the 2005 compilation "Tempus Mortiis" put out by Blasfemia Records. This anthology featured Parabellum, a nihilistic affair redolent in that evil backwards riffing that characterized the band. Songs such as "Engendro 666" and "Madre Muerta" influenced Mayhem and other Norwegian bands and helped create a whole genre of evilness, blasphemy and sickos.
At the time, neither Parabellum nor Reencarnacion were satanists, but critiqued Christianity and Catholicism and played an early prototype of metal that predated the "black" genre in 1981 (with the exception of Venom) and was called "ultra" metal or "anti-technical" metal in Colombia since it was raw and primitive musicianship. Kreator, Beherit and Impaled Nazarene have also paid homage to them in one form or another. More...
For many, the band Ugly Kid Joe was the group on MTV with videos for “Cat’s In the Cradle” and “Everything about You,” but there was more, trust me. They landed in a strange time (right at the start of the grunge nineties) and had a song picked up by a major movie, giving them immediate success. Then, despite this good fortune, the band was unable to keep their momentum (again, blame the nineties – damn you Cobain!) and flamed out rather quickly, leaving us with a limited catalog of three full albums. However, that may change soon... SPOILER ALERT: Ugly Kid Joe is coming back!
Initially, the band used the name Ugly Kid Joe as a parody of the band named Pretty Boy Floyd, and then it just stuck so they kept it. Their first EP was titled “As Ugly as They Wanna Be,” again another parody, this time a take on 2 Live Crew’s “As Nasty as They Wanna Be.” It was clear from the start that this band wouldn’t take themselves too seriously; the music was a mix of hard rock, funk, and glam, though mostly hard rock as they were heavily influenced by Black Sabbath. The current lineup of Ugly Kid Joe is Whitfield Crane (vocals), Klaus Eichstadt (guitar), Cordell Crockett (bass), Dave Fortman (guitar), and Shannon Larkin (drums). More...
Swedish rockers H.E.A.T. have released a video for “Living on the Run” from their album titled ‘Address the Nation.’ As with most rock bands from Sweden, H.E.A.T. have a sound that may be referred to as “1986.” Yes, love it or hate it…let’s take a trip back to 1986! More...
Each week we chat up bands and fans from all corners of metaldom to get their favorite pit stories from live shows. This week guitarist Fack of French death grinders Infected Society shares two memories from the pit, including the following tale of reverse sexual harassment:
When we played in Finland, with some of my previous bands, the boss from our label had a ferocious argument with a guy from the audience because of of the guy’s gorgeous girlfriend. Why? Not because his girlfriend was seriously looking after the label’s boss, but because he was trying to refuse to fuck her. Her boyfriend, a colossus, was really angry someone could refuse to fuck his girlfriend. So the label’s boss had to explain that he was married, with children. But it seems it wasn’t a good excuse enough to the angry colossus, so he had to explain, again, that “no, seriously, you’re girlfriend’s absolutely sexy and beautiful, but I’m married, with children and that, despite his girlfriend’s so hot, he can’t cheat on his wife” to save his life.
Another one? Well. With one of my previous bands, which I won’t name, the singer was so drunk at a gig that we had to play the same song twice because it was on the set list and the singer wouldn’t believe we were just finished playing it, having no memories of the few previous minutes. The crowd was dead laughing, such were we! Encore fait!
Infected Society recently premiered the new song "Victims of Procreation" online, which can be heard at this location. The band will be releasing a debut MCD through Kaotoxin Records this year, and more details on the band can be found via the Infected Society Facebook profile.
Feel free to share your favorite show experiences below, and check back in again next Tuesday as we share more mosh pit stories from metal bands.
A couple of weeks ago I had the chance to tour around Asia with my band for eight days, stopping in seven cities. One of the highlights of the tour was Hong Kong, not just for the great crowd, but for the excellent bands I and my band mates had the privilege to share the stage with. Here’s a quick intro to those bands in this week’s edition of Unearthing the Metal Underground:
Melody, abject brutality, and paramount evil. This is the formula that death metal four-piece Elysium has adopted as its own. Featuring some of the most earthy and natural guttural vocals this side of Incantation and Immolation, along with the occasional elongated pig squeal thrown in for good measure, Elysium has been plying its trade for a few years in the Hong Kong scene, and has managed to make its way to foreign shores at least once, having played at last year’s Drown In Metal Festival in Kaohsiung in southern Taiwan.
While technical, Elysium manages to keep its songs memorable without compromising brutality—no mean feat. Slams and pinch harmonics are put to good use, but not overused, and the band knows how to employ versatility while still maintaining a discernable sound. Currently, the only way to hear Elysium’s music is to pick up a demo from them at a show or check out the band’s Facebook page.
Previously in Sunday Old School, we've looked at several big names in thrash metal from all over the world. These include two of the "Three Kings" of German thrash, Sodom and Destruction. This week we'll be completing the trilogy by taking a look at Kreator, arguably the most well known of the three. Kreator were formed in the city of Essen in 1982 by vocalist/guitarist Mille Petrozza and drummer Jürgen 'Ventor' Reil, originally using the moniker, Tyrant before switching to the name, Tormentor, under which name they released two demos which attracted the attention of Noise Records, home of such other notable metal artists as Celtic Frost and later Sabbat. It was the label’s suggestion that the band change their name, due to the company already having a band from Hungary on their books called Tormentor, and so the German thrashers settled on Kreator instead. The band recorded their debut album, "Endless Pain" in only ten days, featured had a more proto-black metal sound, similar to what Sodom were doing at the time. "Endless Pain" was released in 1985 and was soon followed by the groups sophomore effort, "Pleasure To Kill," which is now considered something of a thrash metal classic and a clear influence of the burgeoning death metal genre. The success of the album led them to embark on their first ever tour (having performed only five gigs before it’s release) and soon they followed with their third record, "Terrible Certainty," which like its predecessor was critically acclaimed and warmly welcomed by underground metal fans, owing in part to the songs, "Behind The Mirror" and their first music video for "Toxic Trace," as well as a strong cover of the Raven song, "Lambs To The Slaughter."
They then focused on breaking America with their next effort, "Extreme Aggression," which was produced by Randy Burns, notable for his work with established metal bands such as Megadeth. "Extreme Aggression" became a hit in Europe and helped to achieve their goal of penetrating the American market when the music videos for the song, "Betrayer," as well as the title track received regular airplay on MTVs Headbangers Ball, before touring North America for the first time with Suicidal Tendencies. The band soon released a fifth album entitled, "Coma Of Souls," which, while praised by many, failed to gain the same recognition that previous records did, with some feeling that the album sounded rushed, though it still managed to sell quite well and spawned two singles in "People Of The Lie" and "When The Sun Burns Red." More...
Van Halen has released their second single titled “She’s The Woman” from their latest album ‘A Different Kind of Truth’, this song is one of the six new songs that were based on older material. Here’s a look…
The video starts with classic slide moves of David Lee Roth and a smiling Eddie Van Halen. Everyone having a good time? Roth follows up with his version of working the pole.
0:43 Roth shimmying across the stage as the Van Halen boys look on, is Roth entertaining the audience or the band? Sometimes it is hard to tell. I guess that’s why Diamond Dave is often referred to as an entertainer first.
The video is the band playing their small come back show at Café Wha? in New York City combined with other stages (appears to be same stage as first video “Tattoo” in a lot of shots) and still photos moving across the screen.
1:11 David Lee Roth deep in thought or trying to remember the lyrics? Discuss amongst yourselves…
1:29 A still shot of an airborne Roth. Probably not recent, but still awesome!
FAVORITE YouTube comments: 3) “She's? the Wombat!” by k4cper3k 2) “no videos should contain lots of? still photos or overalls” by changeofaddress1 and 1) “cool, but who is the new young bassist? !!” by ccbbom.
1:44 A Kodak Gallery of still shots, then we get a look at Eddie Van Halen in red pants. Good to see he still has a little flare, and is not ALL frayed sweatshirts and jeans.
2:10 Was that an album promo in the middle of the video? A distraction or genius? Discuss amongst yourselves…
2:16 Roth using his scarf to “cool down” Eddie during a guitar solo.
2:48 An ass cam (we know because it says ASS CAM) displaying what appears to be a revolver tattoo on Roth’s ass!
2:55 “Thank you very much. Yeah!”