That time Genghis said...
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CD of the Month
  • Mudvayne
    by Mudvayne
  • Lords of Chaos: The Bloody Rise of the Satanic Metal Underground New Edition
    Lords of Chaos: The Bloody Rise of the Satanic Metal Underground New Edition
    by Michael Moynihan, Didrik Soderlind
  • Retribution
    by Shadows Fall
  • Brutal Legend
    Brutal Legend
    Electronic Arts

Podcast #107: Dream

Last time aboard the train that goes around the world...It is still hard to believe that Mike Portnoy has left Dream Theater.  I shudder to think what might happen to the band having just lost a key member.  Yes, they're all talented, but Portnoy was such an integral part in this band's make up, that it will be hard to imagine them without him.  Join Genghis and Ragman as they discuss the departure of Portnoy and the future of DT.  Next, the boys rounded up former TNT lead singer Tony Harnell for a one on one as he discusses his current project, The Mercury Train, and their debut CD, Round Trip.  Tony gives an in-depth look into the new CD and discusses the challenges of making an old song sound new.

Beer of the Show: Green's - Endeavor  Beer Rating: N/A

DVD of the Show: Dream Theater - Live at Budokan

Featured Tracks: James Labrie - Slightly Out of Reach; Dream Theater - Home; Avenged Sevenfold - Nightmare; Iron Maiden - The Man Who Would Be King; Fates Warning - Eye to Eye; Mekong Delta - A Certain Fool; Dream Theater - Ytse Jam; Blind Gaurdian - Control the Divine; James Labrie - Mislead; Black Label Society - Parade of the Dead; TNT - As Far as the Eye Can See; Tony Harnell & The Mercury Train - Northern Lights, Somebody Told You, 10K Lovers, Ready to Fly & Uninvited; TNT - Too Late

Classics of the Show: Dream Theater - A Fortune in Lies & Vanishing Point - Surreal

Ragman Pick of the Show: System Divide - An Intoxicating Affair

Genghis Pick of the Show: Lemur Voice - Akasha Chronicles

- Ragman is spent

Podcast #107: Dream


Allegaeon - Fragments Of Form And Function

From out of the mountains they conquer!Melodic death metal has been around some years now.  Enough that it's hard to release a debut album and receive critical acclaim right out of the gate.  But everywhere you look these days, you seem to find no shortage of praise for Allegaeon's first full album, Fragments Of Form And Function (their self-titled EP came out a couple of years ago).  I don't know what they're feeding their kids in Colorado these days, but the chops these boys display are phenomenal.

The music itself is both brutal and melodic at the same time - something you'd expect from melodic death metal, but Allegaeon manage to make it sound fresh and powerful without splintering off into yet another hybridization of the genre.  Vocalist Ezrah Haynes performs as expected, with powerful, guttural singing, but it's the twin guitar attack of Ryan Glisan and Greg Burgess that make this album stand out.  Their frenetic exchanges are nothing short of mind-blowing even in an age where guys like Michael Romeo walk the Earth.

The Bottom Line: This is one killer debut from these boys from the Mile High state.  If you're a fan of melodic or technical death metal, you'll probably want to give this a listen.  I only fear what Allegaeon will have to do to top it.

- Genghis will be watching this band from now on


James LaBrie - Static Impulse

Damn, James, what have you done? This CD fucking ROCKS.It's funny to think of Labrie as anything other than the Canadian vocalist from Dream Theater.  It's not like he just joined one of the biggest bands in the prog metal scene (try the last 20 years).  But his solo work is relatively sparse for a singer with his talent.  After a couple of albums as "Mullmuzzler", James has finally accepted his role as leader of the James LaBrie band.  And their latest effort, Static Impulse is, in a word: incredible.

LaBrie has slowly been gathering an amazing group of musicians with which he's forged a tight, melodic - and now heavier than ever - band worthy of a big tour.  I mean it, this album sounds like it deserves a place on the shelf next to In Flames as well as Dream Theater.  Though many side projects become another "guy from a popular band does his own thing" self-centered solo CD, James and Matt [Guillory, keyboardist extraordinaire, of Dali's Dilemma] are a great song-writing team, crafting songs with punch while maintaining a lyrical sophistication that transcends most solo efforts from lesser musicians.

The Bottom Line: I can't stop listening to this CD.  James and company have made an incredible album that incorporates all of the best elements of his solo work to date in a tightly focused musical force.  If Ragman hadn't already declared a CD Of The Month (the bastard), this would be it for me.

- Genghis is cranking up "Mislead" for the third time...


System Divide - The Conscious Sedation

"I like how they're able to transition from brutality to beauty"Imagine if Soilwork and Lacuna Coil had a baby, I know it's hard to imagine, but if they did, it would sound just like new comers System Divide.  System Divide have just released their debut CD on Metal Blade Records entitled The Conscious Sedation.  System Divide pack the heaviness of Soilwork with the melody of Lacuna Coil.  As you might of guessed, the band is fronted by a male and female vocalist.  It is a nice blend of melodic death metal with a touch of goth.  I really like how the band is able to transition from brutality to beauty. 

The song Echoes is a prime example of this perfect transition.  The song pummels your senses and then goes into this beautiful melody, that take the song to a new level  I have to say this band is a breath of fresh air, because they are able to blend these two genres.  With the success of bands like Lacuna Coil and Evanescence, the metal market has been flooded with copy cat bands, but System Divide has taken it up a notch, and distanced themselves from the pack.  Go get this one, it rocks!

Bottom Line: Great melodic death metal with a little goth.  Well-written tunes that will get the blood pumpin'.

Standout tracks: Lethargy, Echoes, Hollow and Vagaries of Perception

- Ragman has a new favorite band


Roswell Six - Terra Incognita (A Line in the Sand)

A proggy concept album based on best -selling novels? What a country!Terra Incognita is a epic fantasy book trilogy, created by author Kevin J. Anderson, based on world discovery and battles for religion.  Not too far from what we see and hear about today.  All that being said, it appears that Mr. Anderson is a metal head and has decided to put his books to music.  Anderson enlisted the talents of many names in the progressive rock industry to give him a hand in bringing his books to life, via music.  For the project, he asked Frame Shift multi-musician Henning Pauly to create and play all of the music on the CD.  I have to say, I was not familiar with Pauly, before this project, but now that I've heard this guy play, I'm truly amazed.  Dude is a bad ass.  The vocals were primarily handled by Steve Walsh (Kansas), Michael Sadler (ex-Saga) and Sass Jordan (This one left me guessing when I saw her name on the liner notes, because she is not affiliated with the metal community what so ever.  Not sure what rock they found her under, but she does a nice job).  A Line in the Sand, is the second in this trilogy and promisses to be heavier than it's predecessor.  I haven't heard the first CD, but this one is dark and heavy and very catchy.  The songs are well crafted and flow very well together.  The songs are progressive and have a very heavy edge to them.  All in all a very enjoyable listen.

Bottom Line: A concept album from a best selling author.  Much like the Ayreon projects that we are more accustomed to, Roswell 6 delivers the same sort of progessive punch.  A well crafted disk that gets better with every listen.

Standout Tracks: Barricade, When God Smiled on Us, My Father's Son and Whirlwind

- Ragman is looking for his reading glasses