Archive for the ‘Album Of The Week’ Category

728For this week’s album of the week, I wanted to cover an album by a band who if there was ever a conversation on expanding the Big Four to the Big Five, Exodus would be the band that could argue for that. Exodus is one of the more underrated bands to come out of the Bay Area Thrash Metal Scene who at one time featured Kirk Hammett of Metallica in the band before he left for Metallica. The album that we are covering for today is the band’s debut record Bonded By Blood which was supposed to be released in 1984, but due to issues with their label, it didn’t see the light of day until April 25, 1985. The album featured Paul Baloff (Lead Vocals) in his only album appearance, Gary Holt (Lead and Rhythm Guitar), Rick Hunolt (Lead and Rhythm Guitar), Rob McKillop (Bass), and Tom Hunting (Drums). It is often believed that because of the delay in the release of the album, that it sounded outdated due to how much further the other bands in the scene had gone especially Metallica whose 1984 album Ride The Lightning featured a guitar riff that originally belonged to Exodus. The track I am talking about is Trapped Under Ice which featured the main riff from an Exodus track called Impaler.

exodus 21. Bonded By Blood– An amazing thrash anthem that kicks off the album which explores the bond that the band feels with it’s fans during live shows. 5/5

2. Exodus– Every band in that era had a song that was named after their band and this track features some pretty intense lyrics to go along with the all out metal assault. Just be aware of the Exodus attack when it comes to your town. 4.5/5

3. And Then There Were None– You have to imagine when this song was written that there was still a fear of nuclear war and all the cold war, 1984 stuff going around. The riff of this track competes with the best of them that were out there at the time. 5/5

4. A Lesson In Violence– The track opens with some laser fast, face melting guitar riffs that drive the song forward and the lyrics of the track are only emphasized by the amazing vocals of Baloff who you believe is pissed off just by listening. 5/5

5. Metal Command– Another thrash classic from the band that is a war cry for all those who believe in Metal and are willing to battle all those who oppose us. 5/5

exodus 36. Piranha– An absolute headbanger that could be a metaphor for the music scene or metal in genre. A warning not to mess with Metal heads or they’ll eat you alive. 4/5

7. No Love– The track starts with some clean acoustic guitars before the most evil and amazing guitar riff takes right over. Not sure exactly what he was talking about with the lyrics, but it’s subject matter lies in the dark occult. 4.5/5

8. Deliver Us To Evil– Another track on the album that deals with dark subject matter, but it has a killer riff that will have you headbanging and playing air guitar in no time. 4.5/5

9. Strike Of The Beast– The last track on the album that has that lightning quick playing from Holt and Hunolt in a track that is about fighting off the temptations of the beast. 5/5

My Final Thoughts– A truly amazing album from an underrated band, but you can definitely see in this record that they were definitely influenced by Venom or at least they were on the same wave length. I’ve seen these things happen when a label holds up a release and it jeopardizes everything the band worked for. It’s a shame that it happens, but what are you going to do? The band was in my Pedal To The Metal Tournament this year and they did pretty well for themselves. I am going to give the album 4.7 stars out of five for a final grade.

896b858eI have decided to cover an album for the album of the week that was a but controversial when it came out. The album that I chose for you guys is the last Guns N Roses record to be released to date in their sixth studio album Chinese Democracy. The very album that fans waited 13 years for Guns N Roses to release when it finally came out in November of 2008. The reason I chose the album is because of the fact that I bought the Axl Rose Funko Pop and I went on my Spotify that day and decided to listen to the album once again. The album besides Axl Rose (Vocals) features an army of musicians that worked on it like Robin Finck (Guitars), Ron “Bumblefoot” Thal (Guitars), Buckethead (Guitars), Paul Tobias (Guitars), Richard Fortus (Guitars), Tommy Stinson (Bass), Bryan “Brain” Mantia (Drums), Frank Ferrer (Drums), Dizzy Reed (Keyboards), Chris Pitman (Keyboards), and Josh Freese (arrangements). The album was successful around the world as it went number one in eight different countries and it went number one in the European Top 100 charts as well as peaking at number three on the Billboard Top 200 charts. The album also went platinum and sold over a million worldwide.

bknation_Chinese_Democracy1. Chinese Democracy– The opening track on the album that was inspired by the film Kundun which was about the Dalai Lama. This track and the words contained in it is the reason the album is banned in China as we speak. 5/5

2. Shackler’s Revenge– A track dipped heavily into Industrial metal which is about all of the school shootings in America and how the media tried to pin one on Guns N Roses and their song Mr. Brownstone. 4.5/5

3. Better-An amazing electronic rock track that sees Axl singing in a falsetto style. There’s this one part in the song at the 2:30 mark that is absolutely killer and heavy. The song also contains a killer solo in it too.  5/5

4. Street Of Dreams– the track was originally titled The Blues before the name change and it’s a straight up pop piano rock song that definitely has some Elton John influence in it. 5/5

5. If The World– This is a very sexy song that features Buckethead playing the Flamenco guitar in the beginning with the funk and neo soul influences in it combined with some Nu Metal. 5/5

6. There Was A Time– An epic track on the album that is personally one of my favorties with the heavy orchestral sound with the mellotron, violins, etc. I feel the song is about how we change because we may grow distant with someone. 5/5

7. Catcher In The Rye– A song that Axl Rose wrote in tribute to John Lennon after watching a documentary on Mark David Chapman where Rose criticizes the book in the song. 4.5/5

2FF8. Scraped– The track takes us to that Industrial Rock sound that a lot of people were talking about when it came to this record. With lyrics like, “Don’t you try to stop us now” and “All things are possible, I am unstoppable.” Rose is telling you, he is here to stay. 4/5

9. Riad N’The Bedouins– Axl talked about the track saying, “Riad is the name my one time momentary brother-in-law of Erin Everly went by when I knew him. Of part Lebanese descent and a former student of Pepperdine University, he claims to be an international arms dealer.” 4/5

10. Sorry– Sebastian Bach described the song saying, “There’s this one song called ‘Sorry’ that’s almost like doom metal with Axl singing really clean over this grinding, slow beat that is fucking mean, I cannot get it out of my head.” Rose said the track is about, “anyone talking nonsense at mine and the public’s expense.” 4.5/5

11. I.R.S.– The song starts off a little bluesy before some cool heavy guitars come in during the chorus. 4/5

12. Madagascar– Another track on the album that is one of my favorites. It kind of has the same kind of message as Civil War as it features quotes from films like Mississippi Burning, Casualties of War, Cool Hand Luke, Braveheart, and Seven as well as some excerpts from speeches by Martin Luther King Jr. over some Trip Hop styled sound.  5/5

13. This I Love– Supposedly the song dates all the way back to 1992 as it was a piano ballad written by Rose to one of his former loves. 4.5/5

14. Prostitute– A power ballad with that is actually a cool track that is not about actual prostitutes, but rather him telling you that he wouldn’t pimp the band out just for money to have in his pocket. 4.5/5

My Final Thoughts– In my opinion, this was an excellent release from Axl even though it took forever to come out. The question that was on everyone’s mind then was whether the wait for the new record was worth it. You have to listen to it yourself and just be the judge for yourself, but I love the album. I am going to give the record 4.6 star out of five for a final grade.

suicidesilenceyoucantstopcdFor this week’s album of the week, we are looking to a band that has been the center of a hot topic in metal and I am talking about deathcore artist Suicide Silence. The band which is made up of Hernan “Eddie” Hermida (Vocals), Mark Heylmun (Lead Guitar), Chris Garza (Rhythm Guitar), Dan Kenny (Bass), and Alex Lopez (Drums) have been the center of attention thanks to their new self titled album. In the past I interviewed guitarist Mark Heylmun and respected him and the band after that interview which is why I have decided that I would cover the band’s previous effort, 2014’s You Can’t Stop Me. The album was the band’s first effort with previous singer Mitch Lucker and their first with former All Shall Perish vocalist Hermida. The band’s fourth album was a success for the band as it peaked at number 16 on the Billboard Top 200 charts making it the band’s highest charted effort as it spent five weeks on the charts. According to a source, the album’s title came from a set of lyrics that were left behind by Mitch before he passed away.

SUICIDE-SILENCE---YOU-CANT-STOP-ME-2014-White-21. M.A.L.– A cool instrumental intro that leads us to the next track on the album. 4/5

2. Inherit The Crown– The song kicks off like a bullet from a gun and the track seems fitting with the opening lines “I’ll wear the mask if I have to,I will inherit the crown” which seems to be Hermida telling the crowd that he’ll inherit the spot that Lucker left behind to keep the band rolling. 5/5

3. Cease To Exist– The track starts with the razor fast shredding from Heylmun and Garza and the insane thrash like drumming from Lopez as Hermida sings about his distaste for pedophiles. The song features those typical metalcore breakdowns tuned down to death metal standards with a sick guitar solo. 4.5/5

4. Sacred Words– I absolutely love this track on the album because it makes you believe that it’s going to be more melodic than most tracks until it actually kicks in to overdrive with the hardcore like riffs. The song seems to be about someone who questions the existence of faith and how it has never helped him. 5/5

5. Control– a more death metal like track on the album with the blast beats and fasster than lightning playing that also features vocals from Cannibal Corpse singer George “Corpsegrinder” Fisher. 5/5

6. Warrior– A call and response between the rhythm section and Heylmun set up the beginning of the track as they fiercely blast away in a track about a warrior’s journey. There’s a cool part in the track where all the music stops except for the bass and drums and it’s a kick ass section. 4.5/5

max1408706601-potlaccd-cover7. You Can’t Stop Me– The title track on the album which is also one of two songs to feature lyrics by Mitch Lucker. The track seems to be about stepping up the plate and not letting anyone deter you from being what you want to be. It’s a kick ass section that is a definite sing along with fans. 5/5

8. Monster Within– An in your face unrelenting track that is gets the blood boiling with every note and chord that also features vocals from The Dillinger Escape Plan singer Greg Puciato. 5/5

9. We Have All Had Enough– The track starts with some nice clean guitars and some sound effects like a storm is brewing and it is in the form of some kick ass metal that explodes through your speakers. I think the track is about someone who is trying to fool the public even though it’s written all over his face and we have all had enough. 4.5/5

10. Ending Is the Beginning– This is the other track on the album that features lyrics by Lucker, but that is because this is a re-recording of the track from the band’s Suicide Silence EP. 4.5/5

11. Don’t Die– I feel like this track is a tribute to Mitch and all of his fans like in saying let’s not let his legacy die and let’s keep it moving forward. 4/5

12.  Ouroboros– I had to look up what the title meant and it’s this, “a circular symbol depicting a snake, or less commonly a dragon, swallowing its tail, as an emblem of wholeness or infinity.” The track more or less is them coming to grips with the fact that the world is f**ked and there is nothing we can do, but be one with ourselves. It’s another track that features clean guitars and is a lot slower in tempo, but don’t let their musical abilities fool you because they turn it up in the track as well. 5/5

My Final Thoughts– The bonus tracks on the album feature the track Blue Haze and a cover of an Hatebreed song in Last Breath. From a standpoint of traditional Suicide Silence records, I think this is a pretty kick ass record and a great debut for Hermida on vocals who had huge shoes to fill. You can see the band’s change of direction in the last track on the album so it’s almost foreshadowed. Anyways, I am giving the album 4.6 stars out of five for a final grade.

witchery_in-his-infernal-majesty-serviceAs promised here on Moshpits and Movies, we have covered the album of the year (Post Pop Depression), the rock album of the year (Gore by Deftones), and the metal album of the year (Dystopia by Megadeth) from the Sixth Annual Monster Entertainment Awards. Now we are tasked with covering the last album from the awards show and it’s one of our favorites in the Extreme Metal Album of the Year and it’s from an artist we feel is extremely underrated. Swedish Thrash Metal band Witchery won the award for Extreme Metal Album of the Year for their record In His Infernal Majesty’s Service which is also the band’s sixth album to date. The album is also the first to feature Angus Norder (Vocals) and Chris Barkensjö (Drums) as they replaced Emperor Magus Caligula (Never recorded an album with the band) and Martin Axenrot respectively. The rest of the band is rounded out by Patrik Jensen (R. Guitar), Rille Rimfält (Rhythm and Lead Guitar), and Sharlee D’Angelo (Bass). The album was released on November 25, 2016 and was produced by the band themselves.

witchery-in-his-infernal-majestys-service-2016-eu-red-lp-21. Lavey-athan– The track is an all out metal assault that gives you the best of both worlds with the fierce thrash metal with a touch of black metal. This is what thrash bands should sound like today. 5/5

2. Zoroast– a thrash track with a little more of a punk attitude in the beginning, but that fierceness is still there with an amazing guitar solo towards the end. The track sort of sounds like what would happen if Shagrath from Dimmu Borgir sang thrash metal. 4.5/5

3. Netherworld Emperor– a kick ass trash track that sounds like a tribute to German thrash and Slayer. This would definitely be Satan’s theme song if he marched with troops. 4/5

4. Nosferatu– A clear tribute to Late 80’s Slayer (it has a flow like Mandatory Suicide) on this one about the famous silent era vampire that does kick ass. 4/5

5. The Burning Of Salem– A face melting thrash track with a little speed/death metal influence on the track that is about the village of Salem. 4.5/5

6. Gilded Fang– Another in your face speed metal track that reminds me of Slayer’s Jesus Saves because it doesn’t waste time and it cuts out the fat. 5/5

max1481450599-potlaccd-cover7. Empty Tombs– a straight up thrash metal track with a little groove metal in it that reminds me of early Sodom, but I love Norder’s vocals in this track because he gives it that black metal feel to it. 5/5

8. In Warm Blood– A cool trash track that has a little Mercyful Fate mixed into it as far as the metal feel to the track. 4.5/5

9. Escape from Dunwich Valley– I love the intro to this track with the creepy organs before the band hits the red button and explodes into your speakers. 4/5

10. Feed The Gun– A hard charging supercharged thrash track that is guaranteed to start a moshpit and be a live anthem for the band. This may be my favorite track on the album or at least one of them because it makes you want to slam dance and the solos kick ass. 5/5

11. Oath Breaker– The last track on the album that that competes with the best out of Germany as far as modern day thrash is concerned. It has the fast double bass playing of death metal with the thrash guitars and the Slayer esque solos. 5/5

My Final Thoughts– These guys are one of the most kick ass bands on the scene who have definitely done their homework on Thrash metal and German Thrash metal. As I said, this album sounds like what would happen if Dimmu Borgir had a baby with every thrash metal band in the world. I say that because the vocals are black metal esque with the thrash metal sounds. This was definitely a pleasure to listen to, lovers of Thrash should check it out. I am going to give the album 4.6 stars out of five for a final grade.

megadeth-dystopia_japan_edition-frontalJust as we have done for the last couple of weeks, we are covering albums by bands that won at the 6TH Annual Monster Entertainment Awards. We have already covered the album of the year (Post Pop Depression by Iggy Pop) and the rock album of the year (Gore by Deftones). So, it’s only natural that we move down the line to the next which is the metal album of the year which was taken home by Megadeth for their 15TH studio album Dystopia. In a way Dystopia was a return to form for Megadeth after lackluster sales plagued their previous album. The band had some new players for the album in Kiko Loureiro (Guitars) and Lamb Of God drummer Chris Adler (who recorded the record with the band, but is not a permanent member). Together they joined Dave Mustaine (Lead Vocals/Guitars) and David Ellefson (Bass) in recording what was a huge step in the right direction as the album debuted at number three on the Billboard Top 200 charts making it the second highest charted album in the band’s history (Countdown To Extinction debuted at number two). The album also peaked in the top 5 in six other countries and the title track earned the band their first Grammy after 11 failed attempts for Best Metal Performance.

megadeth-dystopia_japan_edition-trasera1. The Threat Is Real– The song is everything you would want to hear from Megadeth as it’s fierce, in your face, and reminds of me of Rust In Peace era Megadeth. Dave Mustaine is still writing his fierce politically driven lyrics of world destruction and it still sounds fresh. 5/5

2. Dystopia– The title track that won the band the Grammy for Best Metal Performance features some really amazing guitar work from Loureiro and Mustaine that sort of reminds me again of Rust In Peace. The song is about a world that is not ok in any way shape or form. 5/5

3. Fatal Illusion– I have always been a huge fan of Dave Mustaine and the lyrics that he writes as in this one about a prisoner so evil and against society that nothing can kill the evil inside him even the lethal injection. There is a cool bass section in the track that showcases Ellefson’s amazing abilities. 5/5

4. Death From Within– A cool track on the album about an enemy that is constantly is under attack in war that he waits for the perfect moment to enact revenge. 4.5/5

5. Bullet To The Brain– A cool drum cadence starts off the track with some acoustic guitars before the band kicks into overdrive. The track is an interesting take on relationships about how man give in easily to sex when they think they are winning, but they are really losing. 4/5

6. Post American World– an interesting commentary on the way the world is today. We all complain about what is happening in America even though we feel safe, but what if all of that changes and America falls? What will we look like in Post American World? The music reminds me a lot of The World Needs A Hero era Megadeth. 5/5

megadeth-dystopia_japan_edition-cd7. Poisonous Shadows– The track opens more with the clean/acoustic guitar playing before the band turns up the energy in a track about someone who holds some sort of guilt inside of them and they let it manifest. I love hearing Farah Siraj’s vocals in the background, it adds to the track. 5/5

8. Conquer Or Die– A very cool instrumental track on the album that showcases what these guys can do. I think Kiko adds some of that Brazilian flavor to this track and it’s very cool. 5/5

9. Lying In State– An in your face track right from the get go that is hammering and is classic Megadeth. The track is about the government and how they distract you fromt he real issues that are going on as our society is in decline. 5/5

10. The Emperor– The track has more of a hard rock flavor to it then the rest of the album and it may be the band showcasing their influences in a track about a president who thinks he is King, but doesn’t realize he is a joke. 4/5

11. Foreign Policy– This is the band’s cover of California punk band Fear’s track that is actually pretty kick ass. Check it out cause it sounds like something Suicidal Tendencies should have covered. 4.5/5

My Final Thoughts– Sadly I do not know if Chris Adler will return to the fold for future albums, but this was truly an amazing record. It was definitely Megadeth moving in the right direction and they deserved the Grammy and the win here. Kiko Loureiro is an amazing edition to the band and I can not wait to here what else he brings to the table. I am giving the album 4.7 stars out of five for a final grade.

 

goreJust as we did last week when we covered the album of the year for the album of the week, we are continuing it by cover the Rock album of the year as voted by you the fans. At the Sixth Annual Monster Entertainment Awards, the Deftones took him the rock album of the year award for their eight studio album Gore. The album featured the usual suspects in Chino Moreno (Vocals/Guitar), Stephen Carpenter (Guitars), Abe Cunningham (Drums), Sergio Vega (Bass), and Frank Delgado (Samples/Keyboard) and it was produced by Matt Hyde (Hatebreed, Parkway Drive) as well as the Deftones. When released, the album charted at number two on the Billboard Top 200 charts making it the highest charted album from the band since 2003’s self titled album and it was also their highest amount of albums sold in the first week (69,000) since 2006’s Saturday Night Wrist (76,000). It’s also the first Deftones record to hit number one in Australia and New Zealand.

img_20170215_0006_new1. Prayers/Triangles– The very first track on the album that kicks things off in the right direction. The song starts off very atmospheric especially with the guitars and the band lays it down during the chorus. I feel like the track is talking about someone who wakes up one day, but realizes that he is trapped inside this hell. 5/5

2. Acid Hologram– The track picks up right where the last left off with it’s post punk laced rhythms. The track could be talking about how he is trying to be close to someone and they push him away, but that will soon change. 4.5/5

3.  Doomed User– This is more of a traditional sounding Deftones track with the big bass riff and the in your face groove laden guitar track and amazing vocals from Moreno. 4/5

4. Geometric Headdress– The experimental side of Deftones is alive in this intense math rock track that tests Cunningham’s abilities to which he shines. 4.5/5

5. Hearts/Wires– starts off very space rock like thanks to the samples Delgado provides in the beginning. The track starts off more mellow than previous tracks, but don’t worry t has it’s moments of heaviness. It seems to be about some one is distraught over not being able to connect with someone who has passed or gone away. 5/5

6. Pittura Infamante– I believe the title itself means infamous painting, but I’m not sure that is what they are talking about here in this track. It seems to be a song about worshiping someone and the lengths we go to do so. 4.5/5

img_20170215_0007_new7. Xenon– Another track that has a little bit of a classic Deftones feel to the guitar track while have that New Wave flavor to it. Like Xenon which lives undetected, he is talking about being that thing inside you that makes you do what you do. 5/5

8. (L)MIRL– A track that takes you deeper into that world that Deftones are painting with the experimental elements. The song is definitely dark in nature as far as the gloomy guitar riff in the beginning and progresses with a cool metal guitar riff later on. 4/5

9. Gore– A real hard charging metal riff starts off the track that reminds us of what the band had accomplished on the last two records. 4/5

10. Phantom Bride– a pretty cool track on the album that features Jerry Cantrell from Alice In Chains providing the guitar solo. 4.5/5

11. Rubicon– The last song on the album that is a genuine riff fest for Carpenter and company, but an amazing way to close out the album. 5/5

My Final Thoughts– You can definitely tell that the band was heavily influenced by Moreno’s side projects as they’ve all adopted that atmospheric sound. I think it pushes the band forward as far as what they are capable of producing even though Diamond Eyes and Koi No Yokan are considered masterpieces. I am giving the record 4.5 stars out of five for a final grade.

post-pop-depressionAs per custom (or at least we try to), we always cover the albums that have won album of the year, rock album of the year, etc. at the Monster Entertainment Awards. Last year, we didn’t cover a lot of them because I had already covered them before hand so I made a rule that I will not cover new albums until after the award show is done. There were definitely some interesting albums that were up for Album Of The Year, but the one at the end of the day that you chose as the winner is none other than the legendary Iggy Pop and his latest album Post Pop Depression. The special thing about this album is that not only is the 17TH album overall that Iggy Pop has recorded, but it features an all star lineup from bands like Queens Of The Stone Age and the Arctic Monkeys. The band is made up of Josh Homme (vocals, guitar, bass, piano, synthesizers, mellotron, production, percussion), Dean Fertita (Guitar, Piano, Synth, and Bass Guitar), and Matt Helders (drums, percussion, tom-toms, shaker, backing vocals). The album did very well for Iggy Pop as it went placed in the top 20 in 18 different countries including that it peaked at number 17 on The Billboard Top 200 Charts.

2016_iggypopgardenia_press_2201161. Break Into Your Heart– I love the intro of the track that has that Arabic feel to it like a sitar is playing. The song has a Queens/Desert rock sound to it. I feel like it’s Iggy saying that he’s going to break into your heart so that we all love him again. 5/5

2. Gardenia– A more poppy sound to it then the last track that reminds me of 80’s pop/Bowie with it sound and killer bass line. I often wonder if this is a response to The Passenger which is also by Pop. 5/5

3. American Valhalla– a cool and different intro opens the track before the killer bass line from Fertita drives the song forward. The song could be commentary on fame and that all musicians are driving for that place where you are immortalized forever. 5/5

4. In the Lobby– A track that is more in the style of Pop that has that garage rock sense to it while also having the Homme touch to it. 4.5/5

5. Sunday– A very hip track that has a disco touch to it as far as the overall sound and I want to say that the track is about the joys having to do nothing cause it’s Sunday, but I’m not sure. 4.5/5

iggy-josh-preess-26. Vulture– The track starts with an acoustic guitar before a western style bell and music comes along and it’s all about Vultures (maybe literal or metaphorically). 5/5

7. German Days– A cool bluesy garage rock track that has many other layers as well with the music. 4/5

8. Chocolate Drops– A Steely Dan esque track that seems to be about when the going gets rough, it just rains shit. 4.5/5

9. Paraguay– The last track on the album that is smooth in it’s delivery with it’s surf rock melodies entwined into it. The track contains a huge rant from Pop that could be directed towards his skeptics and the internet trolls everywhere. 4/5

My Final Thoughts– I think the band does a pretty terrific job of trying to recapture the sound that was contained in the Bowie/Pop collaborations. This is definitely an album to check out, I am giving it 4.6 stars out of five for a final grade.