The title says it all! Opinions expressed here are those of the authors. Personal tastes may vary, and we are cool with that.

Sunday, July 31, 2011

New Find/Come Cover Me: Dama

Thanks to my new colleagues over at the Sonic Cathedral Zine, I'm on the path to discovering all kinds of great new music, something that always gives me immeasurable pleasure.  It's especially pleasurable when, after downloading a whole bunch of new music, the first new CD you play is just killer.  Such is the case with Italy's Dama, which was recommended in a review of their CD, Eirwen, by my colleague Doctor T.

Dama is, to my ear, a symphonic rock-symphonic metal cross-over band and I have been listening to Eirwen all afternoon.  I love it!  The singer, Barbara Schera Vanoli, is fantastic, and Dama's music is just beautiful.  Not super heavy, but heavy enough, and very vocal and keyboard-centred, with great symphonic elements to boot.  They are tagged on as "Gothic" but I disagree with that.  They are not gloomy or dark enough to warrant such a label and their sound is lighter.

One song on the album, which is their first, that really stuck out for me is a remake of Madonna's "Live to Tell."  It's fucking spectacular and I have been playing it over and over again (probably driving my neighbours up the wall).  This cover is fresh and keeps the songs integrity while making it more interesting than the original.  And I liked the original; it's one of my favourite Madonna songs.  But this is better, in my opinion, than hers.

Here it is:

Dama also has a single out in Italian called "Regina d'Inverno" which they have translated as "Your Winter."  There is an English version of this song, too, but here is the Italian, which is quite lovely.

What do you think?

You can find Dama at these fine locations:

Last. fm
Dama's official web site

Saturday, July 30, 2011

"Metal Elitists are Killing Metal"

A man (or woman) after my own heart.  I found this posted on Sarah Jezebel Deva's Facebook.  It's fantastic and definitely worth a look. 

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Not funny anymore

 "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe." - Albert Einstein

This quote crossed my mind today while watching one video on YT. Probably, some disappointed NW fan, decided to "pay tribute" to Marcelo Cabuli, husband and manager of Tarja.

Sladen Dead, the "artist", wrote the song in early 2006 after the infamous Open Letter and Tarja's departure.  As you will hear, the lyrcis are not really nice and are even worse than Tuomas' "Master Passion Greed", IMO. And I though, that no one can compose shittier lyrics than MPG.

Opeth's new single The Devil's Orchard

The Devil's Orchard is a new single from Opeth's 10th album "Heritage". This album will be the last recording with Per Wiberg as the keyboardist because he is leaving the band as part of a mutual decision. Joakim Svalberg, new keyboardist, is already rehearsing with the band. Here you can find album artwork and track listing.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Some news

1. Epica are in the middle of new album recording. The release date is set up on 9th March 2012. In April, band announced: "About 14 tracks have been written and the best ones will be selected with Sascha Paeth, the producer of the new album." 

2. Lacuna Coil's new album "Dark Adrenaline" won't be released this year. Band's record company, Century Media Records, has moved the release date to an early 2012. 

3. Mike Portnoy's new album release has been delayed. According to Portnoy:  "For those wondering about the 2012 release... Most labels require a three month "setup" for a well promoted release... as it is now late July, delivering the album to a label TODAY won't get a release til October... and basically ALL labels won't release a new album past October (unless you are MADONNA, LADY GAGA, EMINEM, etc.)."

Portnoy started new project "Adrenaline Mob" featuring Symphony X's singer Russell Allen, guitarists Rich Ward, Mike Orlando and bassist Paul DiLeo. Adrenaline Mob will be one of the support acts for Godsmack's headlining tour throughout North America in August. Band will release a four-song EP in August and plan on releasing their full length debut album at the start of 2012.  

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Some News & A Review

This week I applied for and accepted a position with Sonic Cathedral as a reviewer. SC an organization I've been getting CDs from for quite a while now and I've discovered a lot of new female fronted bands through them.  They have a web zine, in addition to all the other things they do, and my CD reviews for SC will be appearing there.

First up, my review of the new Sarah Jezebel Deva release, The Corruption of Mercy.  You can read it here.  As you can see, I really loved this CD, and thought it was a great step forward for SJD in the evolution of her sound and solo career.  Check it!

Anette Olzon's Ever Dream demo

So Anette gave us another demo song today. It is not a song from her unreleased solo album, but her version of "Ever Dream" which she sent to Tuomas while NW was looking for new singer.

Check the song here.

What do you think?

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

New Wintersun song "The Way of the Fire" live at Metalcamp 2011

This is a bootleg video of a live performance featuring the new Wintersun song "The Way of the Fire" from their upcoming album Time. For a while, fans of Wintersun like myself have been waiting for the new album for quite some time, but this video, which was uploaded yesterday, is the first time I heard a full song off the new album anywhere. Though the sound quality isn't the greatest since it was recorded on a camcorder and not with pro audio equipment, you can still tell that this is a great song, particularly @ 3:16 with an awesome interlude and @ 6:58 with a great guitar solo by the one and only Jari Mäenpää. This video gives me hope that the new album should be released sooner than later. Let's all hope so!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Come Cover Me: Little Lion Man by DareDevil Squadron

Power meta/progressive/hard rock band DareDevil Squadron from New York covered my favourite song "Little Lion Man" by Mumford & Sons.
DareDevil Squadron came up with new genre (if we can call it like that) or perhaps term - "Next New Wave of British-Inspired American Heavy Metal" shortened - NNWOBIAHM. To find out more about DareDevil Squadron visit their official website.

"Little Lion Man" is a song by British folk rock band Mumford & Sons. This song received Grammy Award  nomination for "Best Rock Song".

I might be biased, because Mumford & Sons are one of my all time non-metal favourite band, but I really miss the "lightness" of the original version. The folk-ish touch is replaced with guitar riffs and I also find DareDevil Squadron's version less emotional than Mumford & Sons'. OK I know that this is a cover so it is different but once and again I prefer origianl version over covered one.

DareDevil Squadron    

Mumford & Sons

Monday, July 18, 2011

Visions Of Atlantis parted ways with bassist

Today, Visions Of Atlantis announced: "After some crucial internal differences, Mario Lochert (bass) is no longer a member of Visions Of Atlantis. For the upcoming shows we`re already working with new session-members who will take over this position for now as the band is currently not looking for a new fixed bass player!
We're looking forward to meeting you all at the next shows, rock on!"

Borrowed Melodies: Where Is the Love by Baracuda

Baracuda is a German dance project consiting of DJ Toby Sky and vocalist Suny. Their 6th single, they don't have an album just singles, "Where Is the Love" is a sort of cover of NW's "Amaranth" single. The single consists of Amaranth's melody and some elements from Alice Cooper's "Poison". The single was released in 2009 and became very popular in the dance scene.

The lyrics can be found here.


NW's Amaranth video: 

Saturday, July 16, 2011

New Nightwish Download

If you read Lizzie's post here, you'll know that Nightwish had a sample version of one of the upcoming tracks off of Imaginarium released for a Kitee sporting event.  The piece is a remix by DJ Orkidea, who also remixed "Bye Bye Beautiful" and now on NW's web site there is a good quality download available of this snippet!  You can download it for the link here.  Just right click the link and go "save link as..." and it will download for you.  It's short, but sweet!

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Audio samples "From Chaos to Eternity" by Rhapsody of Fire

New Rhapsody of Fire album was released in June. Alex Staropoli said about the album: "This album has two hearts: in the first 8 titles we let the guitars blast stronger again, putting emphasis rather on basic heavy metal... but with the last song we defined once again the cinematic impact of our music for the grand finale of Rhapsody’s tale".

"From Chaos to Eternity" is their final fantasy based album that follows the chronicles of Algalord. The album  contains nine tracks, one of which, "Heroes of the Waterfalls' Kingdom", is almost twenty minutes long and is split into 5 parts.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Short sample of Evanescence's new song

Amy had previously described the song as being "really different" from previous songs. "What You Want" is probably  the heaviest song Evanescence have ever made. According to Amy, the song is about freedom her relationship with the music and the fans.

The single "What You Want" will be released in early August and the new album "Evansecence" will be released on 11th October.

To see the short interview and hear the song check here.

A bit of Imaginaerum tease

In studio diary, Tuomas mentioned that "during the home games of Kiteen Pallo, the entry music will be a remix consisting of the main riff and chorus of song number 11". 

And so this new entrance song for Finnish baseball team Kiteen Pallo was uploaded on YT yesterday.
It's not the best quality because it was recorded by mobile phone but you can clearly hear the song.

I think it sounds very promising. It makes me even more curious now, what Imaginaerum sounds like.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Amberian Dawn New Album Trailer

Finnish symphonic metal outfit Amberian Dawn - one of my fave bands! - is in the studio recording their fourth album, and today they released this trailer, which includes a bit of a teaser for one of the tracks.  It sounds excellent!  The album is slated to come out in "early 2012" - whatever that means.  I hope it means as early as possible in 2012, like January.

Here is the trailer.  Enjoy!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Come Cover Me (Sort Of): Draconian Does Wordsworth

This isn't a cover per se; it's a famous poem put to music by Draconian, a Swedish doom/Gothic band that recently came to my attention and who I am really enjoying.  This is William Wordsworth's "A Slumber Did My Spirit Seal", one of his famous poems that most English Lit students get to spend time with in high school English class or first year university English Lit class.  I quite like Wordsworth, actually, and I got to see where he spent time moping about his cottage in the Lake District during a trip there in the 1990s.

I think Draconian did a great job of turning this poem into a metal song.  It captures the mood and atmosphere very well, and the female vocals are lovely.  The band's style really lends itself to the poem.  I love it!

Come Cover Me: Linkin Park & "Rolling in the Deep"

Why I'm including this on a metal blog is questionable, I know, since LP seems to have left metal behind.  The connection is tenuous to this blog, I know, but I thought it was worth posting nonetheless, mainly because I think this song is so good.

About a month ago, a friend of mine introduced me to British sensation Adele, and I have to say I really dig her stuff.  This song, "Rolling in the Deep" is one of her big hits and I quite like it.  Earlier this month, LP covered it at the iTunes festival in England.  Say what you want about LP, Chester Bennington is an amazing singer, even if LP has gone down the tubes a bit.

Here is the original by Adele.

And here is LP's version:

Borrowed Melodies: The Heart Asks Pleasure First by Nightwish

"The Heart Asks Pleasure First" composed by Michael Nyman, is a part of soundtrack for a famous film The Piano. This album is rated in the top 100 soundtrack albums of all time.

In 2007, Nightwish recorded the song as a bonus song for their new album Dark Passion Play.
Anette wrote about the song in the sturio diary: "Sunday and last day for my vocal recordings!!! Only one song left and this one is a bonus song, which we don't even know yet if we're gonna be allowed to release since the original composer hasn't said his yes yet....but we keep our fingers crossed and of course we record it anyway... It's a very, very beautiful song and Tuomas lyrics are so good and suit it well. For me, I felt a bit nervous about this one, since it goes extremely high in the end and there were some difficult parts here and there for me to get over. But the guys were so nice and helpful and when we started to work on it, I just let the song flow and it went very well. Did the harmonies as well and then Tuomas recorded some demo-keyboards on top and it sounded amazing! I sure hope the composer will say yes, cause it would be so disappointing if we can't release this one..."

Unfortunately, Nyman haven't given the permission for the song's release yet.
In February, Tuomas said about the song "It's gathering dust in my cd-r shelf and hoping to see daylight one day." In June, during the live chat on his official website, Tuomas confirmed that he was told "to get rid of everything to do with their version".

However, NW played "The Heart Asks Pleasure First" as an outro at the end of the Hartwall show in 2009.

There aren't high-quality videos, so I tried to pick up the best one.

In December 2010, Italian rock noir band Belladonna released a song "Let There Be a Light". This song's based on Nyman's "The Heart Asks Pleasure First" and he himslef plays the piano on the track. That's probably the reason why he gave the permission for its release.
I find this song really messy. The piano parts don't fit to the song at all, IMO. In this case I find NW's version million times better than this one.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Lady GaGa goes "metal"

I am not a GaGa fan but when I listened to metal version of "Born This Way" I was stunned. You can find many fan made "metal" versions of pop or other music genres songs, especially on YT. Some are really good but some are a real crapp. This time, Ol Drake of Metal band Evile version of GaGa's hit single is really great IMO. 

Some news

Sarah Jezebel Deva's new single "The World Won't Hold Your Hand" was released yesterday. The single comes from her new album "The Corruption Of Mercy".

Tarja works on her new rock album. She has written 18 songs already and wants the songs to be ready at the end of the summer. The name of the album or release date is not known yet.

Simone Simons from Epica will join Kamelot on their NA tour singing "The Haunting". According to Kamelot's founder/guitarist Thomas Youngblood, the members of the band have already begun searching for a permanent replacement for Roy Khan.

Johnny Depp recently joined Alice Cooper on stage to play "I am Eighteen" and "Schools Out".

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Anette Olzon's demo songs

In April, Anette announced, that she's not going to release a solo album. Today, she launched 2 raw demo songs "Floating" and "Invincible" on her official MySpace page. Later on, Anette will add another song. Read Anette's description of the songs.

So, what do you think about the songs?

I like them. It's nice too hear "other" musical side of Anette.

Dream Theater's new single

"On the Backs of Angels" became the first single from band's new album "A Dramatic Turn of Events".
The album feature new drummer Mike Mangini and will be released on 13th September.

A Dramatic Turn of Events track listing:

01. On The Backs Of Angels
02. Build Me Up, Break Me Down
03. Lost Not Forgotten
04. This Is The Life
05. The Shaman's Trance
06. Outcry
07. Far From Heaven
08. Breaking All Illusions
09. Beneath The Surface