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That time Genghis said...
Album of the Month - July
  • Underworld
    Underworld
    Nuclear Blast
Video of the Month - July
  • Like It Is-Yes Live At The Mesa Arts Center (BR) [Blu-ray]
    Like It Is-Yes Live At The Mesa Arts Center (BR) [Blu-ray]
    starring Yes
What's in the mind of Behemoth?
  • Confessions Of A Heretic: The Sacred And The Profane: Behemoth And Beyond
    Confessions Of A Heretic: The Sacred And The Profane: Behemoth And Beyond
    by Adam Nergal Darski, Mark Eglinton
Props

CD of the Month
  • Mudvayne
    Mudvayne
    by Mudvayne
Inspiration
  • 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
    Retribution
    by Shadows Fall
  • Brutal Legend
    Brutal Legend
    Electronic Arts
Thursday
Jun132013

Doro - Raise Your Fist

Doro has been one of those artists, that you can depend on, from release to release.  Doro album's are dependable, and you pretty much know what you are going to get, from release to release, just like AC/DC and Motorhead, which is not a bad thing.  She went through an experimental phase, in the 90's, but has really settled in, on her sound, over the past 3 to 4 releases.  As one would expect her latest release Raise Your Fist picks up where Fear No Evil left off.  The CD is packed with 13 songs of unadulterated heavy metal.  

The songs are melodic, as one would expect, but they also seem a bit more intense and pissed off.  Doro sings, on this CD, with more aggression, which gives the record a heavier feel.  Songs like Take No Prisoner and Revenge are prime examples of Doro expressing her heavier side.  There are also some great anthems on the CD, like Rock Till Death and Grab the Bull (Last Man Standing).  Lots of variety on this disk; ballads, rockers and anthems, what else do you need?

Bottom Line:  Doro, once again delivering a solid release and proving why she is the queen of metal.  A great selection of well written catchy tunes.

Standout Tracks: Coldhearted Lover, Rock Till Death, Freiheit (Human Rights) and Hero

-Ragman is raising his fist.

Thursday
Jun132013

Scale The Summit - The Migration

Holy smokes, these hometown heroes can play instrumental prog like nobody's damn business. This album is fucking amazing.It's hard enough to start a band these days in a town that's not known for having a thriving music scene, but that's exactly what Scale The Summit did in my home town of Houston, Texas back in the mid 2000s, putting out their debut album in 2007 on their own.  Since then, they've released three sucessive albums through Prosthetic Records bringing us to their latest work, The Migration.  And it's a progressive instrumental lover's sweet, melodic dream.

Far from the wankery of their brilliant-but-way-too-esoteric musical predecessors like Watchtower (another Texas band), Scale The Summit's strength is its firm foundation in melody; more Gordian Knot than Messhugah.  And no matter how intricate Chris [Letchford] and Travis [Levrier]'s complimentary guitar passages get, there's always a strong sense of direction from beginning to end like a boat floating down a river.  Indeed even when things go from pensive to energetic as on Evergreen, you never get the feeling of disorientation that some bands do; you need a melodic anchor in an instrumental piece when the vocals aren't there to tie it all together emotionally. Think Animals As Leaders meets...Eric Johnson? However you want to describe what they're doing, I just hope they keep doing [in Houston] it for a long time to come.

The Bottom Line: These hometown boys have done it again! They've put out an amazing catalog of music in the short time they've been around and they show no signs of stopping with each new album sounding better than the last. If you get a chance to see them live, DO IT!

Tracks To Make Your Guitar Playing Irrelevant: The whole damn album

- Genghis sometimes just looks at his guitars and asks "who am I kidding?"...

Wednesday
Jun122013

Dio - Finding the Sacred Heart - Live in Philly 1986

It has been 3 long years since the passing of metal legend Ronnie James Dio, but his legacy lives on, with all of the vintage releases that have followed, since his passing.  The latest release, is actually a re-release of his 1986 concert film Sacred Heart (The Video).  The show was filmed in Philadelphia during the second leg of the Sacred Heart tour.  The original release was an edited version of the full show, but the re-release, now features the full concert, which is definitely a good thing.  If you were a fan of the original line up, then you will be happy, because they are all there, with the exception of original guitarist Vivian Campbell.  At the start of the second leg of this tour, Campbell had been replaced by Craig Goldy (Ex-Giuffria).  Goldy joined the band, after Campbell left to join Whitesnake.

Finding the Sacred Heart, has finally been released, the way it should have been, several years ago.  It baffles the mind, to think some exec., back in the day, thought it was a good idea to edit this thing down. The set list relies heavily on the Sacred Heart album, but many of the classics are present as well. The great thing about the re-release is that you now get to see the performances of songs like Don't Talk to Strangers and We Rock, which were left off of the original release.  

If that ain't enough, make sure to check out the bonus features.  There is a vintage interview with Ronnie, at the time of the release of Sacred Heart as well as a more recent interview with Ronnie and Craig, that features them reminiscing of the the Sacred Heart tour.  Cool stuff.  A must for Dio fans.

Bottom Line: This is a solid performance from the Dio band, in which they were firing on all cylinders.   If you own the previous version, I would suggest you box it up and grab this one because this release trumps it by a mile.  

Ragman is biting his nails for the re-release of the Hear N' Aid...Release it already!!

Tuesday
Jun112013

Podcast #153: Owner

Geoff Thorpe is an old school guy, and a class act to boot - and Vicious Rumors sounds amazing these days!Is there really a need for two incarnations of the same band? That is, when bands split up into two (or more) separate factions to carry on shouldn't only one of them get the name? Join Genghis & Ragman as they discuss how it's not only confusing when you go to see these bands live, but equally so when they're releasing new product under the same name (this practice has been more prevalent over the last 10 years, but Queensryche's taken it to a new level). Next, the boys welcome Vicious Rumors guitarist Geoff Thorpe for a one-on-one as Geoff discusses the band's latest release Electric Punishment as well as their current tour plans.

DVD of the Show:  Judas Priest - Epitath

Beer of the Show: Préaris Quadrupel (Vliegende Paard Brouwers)
 
Appearance: 3.0
Aroma: 3.0
Palate: 3.0
Taste: 3.5
Overall: 3.0
"What starts out with as a great sipping beer becomes really strong on the alcohol taste when it warms up."
 

Featured Music: Jolly - Firewell; Judas Priest - Metal Gods; Dio - Night Music; Queensryche - Rhythm of Hope; The Winery Dogs - Elevate; Adler - Just Don’t Ask; Vicious Rumors - Don’t Wait for Me, Thirst for a Kill, Together We Unite, Escape (From Hell), This Sign of the Southern Cross (Black Sabbath Tribute), Electric Punishment, and Children

Classic of the Show: Crimson Glory - Painted Skies

2nd Classic of the Show: Sevendust - T.O.A.B.

Genghis' Pick of the Show: Soen - Oscillation

Ragman's Pick of the Show: Jettblack - Sweet and the Brave

- Ragman is ready for a throwdown between the Queensryches...

Podcast #153: Owner

Tuesday
Jun042013

TesseracT - Altered State

The addition of Ashe O'Hara has really put this band at the top of their prog metal game - and they do it all without guitar solos! WTF?I have said it before, but it bears repeating that the key to good progmetal isn't just killer musical chops; there are loads of talented people all over the world - just check out YouTube some time. But there has to be a good listenable quality to it in the vocals and in the melodies. Luckily, UK-based TesseracT displays not only a good sense of that melodicism but also possess an extraordinary intensity in their music that makes for an exhilarating sense of momentum.

Despite a seemingly ever-changing [vocalist] lineup over the last several years, as heard on their debut CD and follow up EP, the band's drive to make a name for themselves clearly remains undaunted, and their sophomore effort, Altered State, attempts to reflect that sense of the dynamic nature of our existence. Based on the scientific Law of the Conservation of Energy, the album muses on the law's four stages of change. But, while there are deeper levels of thought involved lyrically, the music of Altered State is what hits you with the most impact. It is classic progmetal all the way, though thankfully light on the esoteric noodling that often permeates the genre today.

For a band that's apparently gone through as much inner turbulence as this one, the music has a remarkable focus and intensity - perhaps due to the creative energy brought to the table with the addition of vocalist Ashe O'Hara. His amazing voice injects the rest of the lads' incredible music with an organic presence that connects emotionally in a way too few fellow proggers do these days.

The Bottom Line: Let's hope that this lineup stays together for a good long while. This is progmetal at its finest, and I can't wait to hear more from this band!

Tracks To Make You A Believer: Of Matter - Proxy, Of Mind - Nocturne, and Of Reality - Palingenesis

- Genghis got through most of the album before he even realized: no guitar solos...