How many of you have thought, “Man, wouldn’t it be just awesome if [insert band name here] toured with [insert band name here]?” I know I’ve done it on more than one occasion. Hell, I do it all the damn time. There are some tour pairings that make so much sense that it simply boggles my mind that the’ve never been done. These are tours that would get fans salivating, drool flowing from the mouth like waterfalls.
So I put together six of my most desired tour pairings, ones where the headliner and co-headliner would not only compliment each other but would take things to an entirely new level. Head on below to see my list! READ MORE
Folks in Albany, NY who are going to the April 28th Opeth/Katatonia stop on their N. American tour will be treated to an incredibly special gift as Steven Wilson (Porcupine Tree, Blackfield) will be performing his solo material there, complete with live band. This show will be the only one during the tour, so make sure to pre-order tickets in advance to ensure a spot. Head on below to see a poster for this event (I would hang that on my wall in a heartbeat). READ MORE
Swedish melodic metal band Dark Tranquillity have announced that they will be releasing Construct, their 10th studio album, on May 25th in N. America via Century Media Records. This will be the follow up to 2010′s We Are The Void (review).
The band comments: “Greetings, Darklings! After having played over 200 shows in every corner of the world in support of the ‘We Are The Void’ album, it’s time to focus inwards and lock ourselves up in the studio. Months and months of hard songwriting work has paid off, and the recording sessions will start early this year. Further details will be announced in due time, but for now we can reveal that the album will be entitled ‘Construct’ and that we’re very excited to have Jens Bogren (Paradise Lost, Opeth, Katatonia) taking care of the mix. The release date is set for May 28 in North America.” READ MORE
The New England Metal & Hardcore Festival is celebrating the 15th anniversary of delivering brutal metal to masses. The festivities will be at the historic venue The Palladium in Worcester, MA and will commence with a pre-party on April 18th, 2013 with the three official days of the fest following on the 19th, 20th, and 21st. Tickets will go on sale Wednesday, Jan. 16th.
Commented the festival’s founder Scott Lee, “I am excited with how far we have come and am ecstatic for this to be on our 15th year! It has been a long, interesting journey. We always try to make it a memorable event and we really hope you all enjoy the festival this year.”
The festival will be headlined by Hatebreed, Opeth, and Suicidal Tendencies, along with Anthrax performing their entire Among The Living album.
Over 40 acts will be performing across two stages. The full list of bands can be seen below. READ MORE
Two of Sweden’s greatest musical exports, Opeth and Katatonia will be joining forces for a full N. American tour this Spring. The two bands will kick things off in Buffalo, NY on April 18th and wrap things up on May 26th in Santa Cruz, CA. Opeth will be touring in support of their 2011 album Heritage (review) while Katatonia will be supporting their 2012 release Dead End Kings (review), which made #2 on my Top 10 Albums of 2012 list.
Katatonia guitarist Anders Nyström comments, “Back in the U.S.A…That’s right Springsteen! We’re looking at round #2 as special guests to our brothers in Opeth on their last North American leg of the Heritage World Tour. This time we’ll mainly cover off-territories, so regardless if you caught or missed us last time, consider this a second chance to attend the dead ends of North America with one of the best bills there’ll ever be!”
You can see the full touring schedule below. READ MORE
Two of Sweden’s greatest musical exports, Opeth and Katatonia, will be touring N. America this spring. So far only one release date has been released: May 10th at the Machine Shop in Flint, MI (check out the flyer below). Tickets will be made available this Friday, Jan. 11th at 10am.
Opeth will still be touring in support of their album Heritage (review) while Katatonia will be touring for Dead End Kings (review).
On a personal note, I’m beyond excited for this. I saw Katatonia and Opeth tour together before and it was nothing short of incredible. Another combined tour from the two of them is something that I refuse to miss. READ MORE
And so another year comes to a close. 2012, just like any other year, you had your gems and you had your flops when it came to album releases. For this article, I’d like to give you my Top 10 albums of 2012 as well as several honorable mentions that didn’t exactly make the cut but were too good to leave unmentioned. So, read on to see my Top 10 Albums Of 2012!
Make sure to check out my worst 5 albums here. READ MORE
Roadrunner Records has uploaded a short clip on their YouTube channel that suggests Swedish progressive metal band Opeth will be touring N. American in Spring of 2013. The clip shows a view of Earth spinning slowly while “The Devil’s Orchard” from the album Heritage (review) plays. The camera begins to pull in and stops when N. America is in the screen. The Opeth ‘O’ logo comes up along with the words ‘Spring 2013′. Based upon that, it’s kind of hard to come up with any other conclusion aside from a tour. Once more details are released, we’ll let you know!
In the meanwhile, check out the video below. READ MORE
We all have those moments in songs that just speak to us. You know what I’m talking about, right? It’s that part of the song that you’re blasting in the car with a several of your friends and you make them all shut up so you can share that one special moment with them. Usually, it ends up with everyone staring at you, wondering what the hell you’re so excited about.
You know what? Screw ‘em. You know what’s so special. You know what’s going on. And you’re gonna scroll back to hear that part again, whether they like it or not.
So, join me below as I share 10 Moments In Songs That I Just Love! READ MORE
In a recent interview with Uppsala Student Radio 98.9, Opeth mainman Mikael Akerfeldt briefly described two new songs that are being written for the followup to 2011′s Heritage (review). He says that the first song is rather miserable yet beautiful. But the real interesting part is that he describes the second track as being heavily influenced by Italian prog rock band Goblin, who scored many of Dario Argento’s films, including the fantastic Suspiria.
Akerfeldt stated, “I have one new song, which I really like, a new song. It’s the most miserable song I ever wrote, and it’s beautiful, I think. And then I have a song that we jammed, actually, on tour. I came up with a little lick and became a bit of a director and just told everyone to play this and that, and we started jamming on something. And it sounded, immediately from the beginning, which was also my idea, it sounded like the band Goblin, if you heard them, the Italian band. So it’s a crazy riff, a GOBLIN rip-off, and the song is called “Goblin”, which is a good title, I think. And we’re gonna record it. I’m not sure if that will be too much of a fucked up song to be on the record, because there will definitely only be one song ever we do that is gonna sound like that. So maybe it’ll just be some extra thing that we have. But it’s really good; I love it. But then again, it’s just because of the closeness to Goblin.”
You can watch footage of Akerfeldt describing the music below. READ MORE
Norwegian prog metal band Leprous has commenced the recording of their as-of-yet-untitled follow up to 2011′s Bilateral (which was tied with White Willow‘s Terminal Twilight as my Album of the Year).
Singer/synth-player Einar Solberg gives an update: “As many of you already know, we’ve started recording our new album. The drums are finished, and we’re now focusing on the guitars. Also this time we’re using Vegard ‘Ihsahn‘ Tveitan and Heidi ‘StarOfAsh’ S. Tveitan as our producers / technicians. The drums were recorded in the really cool and old school Juke Joint Studio, and we’re really satisfied with the result.
“As far as the new music, we can only remind you that LEPROUS will never be the kind of band to re-create the mood from previous works, and it’s very important for us that each album has its own strong character. We have great belief in this album and we promise something fresh, challenging and soulful! This album will also be mixed and mastered by Mr. Jens Bogren (Bloodbath, Opeth, Amon Amarth) at Fascination Street Studios.”
The band has released a studio update that shows the drums being recorded. You can hear snippets of new songs during the video.
Also, make sure to check out our interview with Einar here. READ MORE
Nuclear Blast Records artist Soilwork have unveiled the album artwork and track list for their upcoming double-album The Living Infinite, which will be released March 5th, 2013. The album was produced by Jens Bogren (Opeth, Amon Amarth, Bloodbath) and the artwork was designed by Mnemic‘s Mircea Eftemie Gabriel.
Gabriel shares, “Seven years ago, I created the artwork for the Stabbing The Drama album and I can’t believe how time flies! Here we are, with sexy gray hairs, working with my friends in Soilwork again. This time, we built the cover around a maritime concept, aiming for something direct and symbolic. I believe we achieved that quite well. From my creative deck, I salute you and say: ‘Long Live The Living Infinite.’”
The bands states, “After commissioning some pretty elaborate covers for the last couple of records, we decided to try something more sober and design-oriented for The Living Infinite. Who better to call than the man who created the iconic Stabbing The Drama cover? Mircea Gabriel Eftemie is not only a close friend but also an incredible graphic designer. We’re all stoked about his work which is different from anything Soilwork has ever done and perfectly suits the elegant oceanic concept of The Living Infinite. Enjoy folks!”
Read on to check out the album cover and track list! Also, make sure to check here for Soilwork’s 2013 N. American headlining dates. READ MORE
Polish progressive rock group Riverside has unveiled the album artwork and track list for their upcoming fifth studio album Shrine Of New Generation Slaves, which will be released Jan. 21st, 2013 via Century Media/InsideOut Music. You can see both below.
The artwork was designed by Travis Smith, who has done most of the album artwork for bands such as Opeth and Katatonia as well as the Avenged Sevenfold Nightmare cover, which many regarded as the best hard rock album cover of 2011. READ MORE
Swedish progressive metal band Opeth performed an acoustic set (their first ever) at the Union Chapel in London this past Friday, Nov. 16th. Below is fan-filmed footage of many of the songs as well as the full track list of the show.
According to Blabbermouth, singer/guitar Mikael Akerledt stated in a recent interview, “We’re constantly looking for new ways to push things forward with the live set. We’ve done so many, so to speak, run-of-the-mill type of tours, meat-and-potatoes type of tours where we just go up and play our songs. So this is a little bit of an odd thing, which both makes me excited and a bit nervous; I kind of wanna run away and hide. We’ve never done unplugged shows. I’m not sure if it’s gonna be ‘unplugged’ unplugged; it’s just gonna be laid back…And our discography is quite diverse and we can do things like that, so we figure, why not?”
Opeth’s last album is Heritage (review), which was mixed by Porcupine Tree‘s Steven Wilson. READ MORE
British progressive rock band Porcupine Tree have released a live video for “I Drive The Hearse”. The video comes from the 3-disc edition of their upcoming live album Octane Twisted, which comes out Nov. 20th in N. America (pre-order here). You can watch the video below.
I remember my first time seeing Porcupine Tree back in 2003 at St. Andrews Hall in Detroit, MI when they opened up for Opeth (who were touring Damnation). While the crowd was more interested in Opeth, I was blown away by PT. I bought I think three albums and a t-shirt from the merch table and I’ve seen Porcupine Tree each time they’ve come through Detroit since then. I actually flew out to San Francisco to seem them at the Fillmore when Robert Fripp (King Crimson) did a solo opener doing his Soundscapes. Easily one of my favorite bands ever. READ MORE
Excuse me for on moment. Ahem…ahem ahem…FREAKIN’ AWESOME!!! I’m a HUGE Ayreon fan. The Human Equation is one of the greatest concept albums ever released and 01011001, while I personally don’t think is as good, is still an incredible album.
So, getting to the news, even though Arjen Lucassen released Lost In The New Real, a solo album, earlier this year, he is already hard at work on the next Ayreon record! No release date has been schedule but it is tentatively scheduled for 2013 (hurry up already!). Below is a lighthearted video of Arjen recording electric and acoustic guitars as well as keys for the release. Check it out below!
Personally, one of the things I always get excited for with a Lucassen release is the game where we have to figure out who the guest singers are going to be. Considering the stellar talent that he gets for each release, from Dream Theater‘s James LaBrie to Opeth‘s Mikael Akerfeldt to ex-The Gathering‘s Anneke van Giersbergen, my expectations are at near fever-pitch. READ MORE
Soilwork singer Bjorn “Speed” Strid has posted a video of new guitarist David Andersson laying down a guitar track for an as-of-yet untitled song on the upcoming album The Living Infinite. The riffing going on is pretty awesome and encompasses exactly what I’m expecting and hoping for from the release. There’s lots of low-string chugging as well as high-string melodic passages. The video can be seen below.
The Living Infinite, the band’s ninth studio release, will be a double album. Jens Bogren (Opeth, Amon Amarth, Bloodbath) has been tapped as producer and the album will also mark the recording debut of long-time touring guitarist David Andersson (Night Flight Orchestra). More information from Strid can be found here.
The album has an undetermined 2013 release date. READ MORE
Swedish melodic death metal band Soilwork have announced that their next studio album The Living Infinite will feature TWO CDs, not one. Jens Bogren (Opeth, Amon Amarth, Bloodbath) has been tapped as producer. The album will also mark the recording debut of long-time touring guitarist David Andersson (Night Flight Orchestra).
Singer Bjorn “Speed” Strid explains, “So here’s the scoop. Me and the boys have been waiting to share this for quite some time now: The Living Infinite will be a double album! A REAL double album, in the true sense of the word, which means no fillers and no left-overs.
I’ve been wanting to do this for a while and I proposed the idea to the rest of the guys in the band, during our festival tour last summer. Everybody liked the title The Living Infinite and also the idea of working towards the goal of releasing a double album. David Andersson was already playing with us last summer, so he has also been a part of this goal from the start. I feel very excited and proud that we’ve managed to find the inspiration and dedication it takes to create somewhat of a conceptual double album, especially since it’s dealing with a lot of existential questions.
We would also like to reveal a brand new band shot by Hannah Verbeuren Photography [below]. We are currently hard at work in the studio, putting this beast on tape. Things are sounding incredibly good so far. So excited about this and can’t wait to share the awesomeness with you all!”
I was a huge fan of 2010′s The Panic Broadcast so I’m very eager to hear this next album. READ MORE
Oh snap! We’re officially in the top ten and only one day away from finding out which riff crushes them all! Have you been keeping up with the awesome riffages that I’ve been posting? If not, check out 25-21, 20-16, and 15-11 before you head on down. That way, you’ll give your neck a nice warm up, getting it ready for some more Guitar Riffs That Make You NEED To Headbang! READ MORE
Following the trend of Grand Theft Auto and Saints Row, the newly released Sleeping Dogs, a sandbox “take down the Triads” game, will feature a radio station that provides you with nothing but metal. However, Sleeping Dogs took it one step further and aligned themselves with Roadrunner Records. That’s right, the whole station is RR heavy rock and metal artists. If you tune in, you’ll be able to hear bands such as Opeth, Trivium, Killswitch Engage, DevilDriver, Black Stone Cherry, and more. Check below for the full list. READ MORE
Trivium guitarist/vocalist Matt Heafy was in Florida last night at a benefit for the MOSCOT Mobileyes Foundation, which provides free quality medical eyecare and eyewear for New York City’s “underserved populations” [source]. During the acoustic performance, Heafy did a rendition of Opeth‘s “Harvest”, which comes off their 2001 album Blackwater Park. You can watch the performance below.
Trivium’s latest album is In Waves. The band is currently on the Trespass America tour with Five Finger Death Punch, Killswitch Engage, and more. READ MORE
In an interview with PitCam.TV, Opeth frontman Mikael Akerfeldt discussed playing the Wacken festival, recording Storm Corrosion (review) with Steven Wilson, and many other great topics. Among them was the discussion if the next Opeth record would be on Roadrunner Records, since the RR offices in Europe were shutdown. Akerfeldt confirmed that the next record would indeed be on RR but that he was very saddened by the shutdown, stating that many people there were friends and he’s not sure who is dealing with the logistics now.
Towards the end of the interview, Akerfeldt discussed how he and Martin Mendez used to play Guitar Hero while on tour, sometimes even up to the moments before going out on stage. End result? Akerfeldt had to force himself to stop because he was getting nervous on stage without a button guitar. Check out the interview below. READ MORE
Hailing from Savannah, Georgia, Baroness is a four-piece group that plays a mixture of sludge and melodic metal with traces of prog and a sprinkle of punk. With elements of these genres, you KNOW that I was intrigued to listen to their latest offering. After all, they’ve toured with Metallica, Opeth, Clutch, Mastodon, and many more influential, fantastic artists. Add to this the fact that both Red and Blue are fascinating, incredible albums, and I was all set to sit back and delve into the two-disc set that is Yellow & Green. So, was I satisfied or left wanting? READ MORE
Described as “string metal”, Judgement Day are a three-piece outfit that is comprised of a cello, a violin, and drums based out of San Francisco, CA. Brothers Anton and Lewis Patzner began playing string metal on the streets of Berkley, CA. As their popularity grew, so to did their ranks. They welcomed in Jon Bush began to play drums and the band was able to perform amplified shows at various clubs and venues in the area.
With several albums and compilations under their belt, Judgement Day is back with their latest offering, Polar Shift (iTunes pre-order). With 14 tracks and nearly 40 minutes of music, does this string metal offering work or end up sounding dangerously out of tune? Read on for the answer. READ MORE