The Rapids – Debut

Here’s the Line-up:

Joshua Elkington – Vocals/Guitar
Phil Crawford – Guitar/Vocals
David Bicheno-Samways – Drums

I recovered this from their Facebook page, so I’m not sure if this is a recent change or what not…

Tuff Swami – Lead Vocals/Guitar
Respected Desperado – Lead Guitar/Vocals
Insane Ninja – Guitar
Tuff Professional – Drums
Tuff Commander – Bass

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So, having heard this music:

This is the second band from Portsmouth that I’m reviewing to date (the first I believe was Forest Floors). The bands songs seem very pop oriented, and I enjoyed listening to them very much. Elkington and Crawford have a good ear, Like Bono/Edge. The lyricism in this music was commendable, showing I wasn’t listening to amateurs. Samways also has a good rhythm, but very technical (the reason I say that their band is pop-structured). Samways follows a very specific drumming pattern, but his strongest song appears to be “Maybe It’s You”.

The whole album is a set of hard rock hits… with milder tracks like “Waves” giving a breath of fresh air. Eight steady tracks with VERY well written, down to earth lyricism. Elkington sounds different in each song, usually the element of vocally (mood-setting). However, I will say this:

The songs ARE goof. The lyrics ARE brilliant. But the melody is very “poppy”, particularly when in sync with Elkington’s vocal style (I.E, T.R.B). Correct me if I’m wrong; perhaps that’s the sound the band wants… but same goes for the Disney channel. I advise they be cautious with the melodic strategy they’ve taken on as their signature sound (or learn the same lesson Journey did pre-Steve Perry). A lot of child friendly bands have adopted this sound, and following in such a pattern could result in being taken less seriously. Fortunately, having a stronger ear for lyrical content and instrumental experience, it would be safe to say that this band is on the right track, and at least the sound isn’t conforming to mainstream/popular demand.
Mind that the band does have a sense of hollow sound to them. I noticed in the actual Bandcamp page, no Bass player is identified (though one is on the Facebook page). The lack of a bass player (assuming the lack of credit means there was none), means that the songs might come across as being a bit flat sounding, even with a steady guitar rhythm.

Quotes from unspecified reviews, regarding the band’s first release (taken from their Facebook page, no source verified):

‘Honestly the most exciting up and coming band I’ve heard in a long time’
‘A much bigger future awaits them.’
‘More hooks than a school cloakroom’
‘The birth of a band that have more potential to burst through and wreak havoc than a lion at a fun fair!’
‘First impressions – wow’
‘Simply thumping rock n roll at its best’
‘Slice of irresistible rock n roll’
‘Certainties for big things’

In the long run, these young guys seem to have what it takes. They’re different (if you think along the lines of mainstream-induced expectations), and they have drive. I was a huge fan of a pop-styled hard rock band, and I see that potential in these guys.

As for this piece of work, I would love to sit back and watch these guys grow and embrace a unique sound with their original music. They sound like they put effort into writing this music (unlike today’s musicians), and I really would love to look forward to a new release.

Heart Impaled: Review on 14 Track LP…

Why aren’t these guys multi-platinum? They should move to Japan. The industry’s faster there…

About a month ago, I was blown away by a track listing for the January Complex. Literally- I was blown away! I fell off my chair headbanging. That master work was more electronic oriented, fused with Industrial workmanship and heavy metal riffs. But if you get me hooked on one album, I better OD on the next. Now, I think I’ll write this review in a trauma-unit, so I can resuscitate dead people with this EPIC GOD-MODE music!

Hearing this, I thought the opening sentence above. This is truly a work of art. The ultimate blend of electronic music and the ultimate hardcore metal styles. It’s like when Bruce Lee married different fighting styles in the seventies, but with music! It’s as if two polar styles can coexist with the merging of music and technology!

The vocals sound like a cross of Jeff Becerra, Spider One, Jonathan Davis and Mustaine all in one! It’s truly amazing that someone could carry this on through a long play. The drumming style is never the same on any track, lending methods of power and speed drumming. The lyrics sound like a crossover of Doom and Trash and Death; a polygamous intertwine. The track Avil sounds like the voice of American Hardcore Chris Van Dahl. I swear to God, I could assault this album with the pro sound they’ve achieved. The guitars are just as brilliant; like Judas Priest meets Spineshank. The solo work of the fourth and fifth track (Pinions and Locust) are mesmerizing for the average metal head, igniting a racing pulse (no wonder they call it heart impaled).
Here’s what’s interesting; the music is so heavy and guitar/electro oriented, and yet you hear the bassist clearly. Through track 4 to 7, he sounds like a ravaging Steve Harris, and then John Entwistle all the way through. I love the keyboard work on Mantichords (The Awakening)… That was unexpected but proved that these guys don’t just shred like maniacs (not that they’re anything wrong with that).

This album is going straight to my listening devices!!! I’d pay for three houses worth to have this!

However, being as unbiased as a jury member, I can’t give this a full five. The output is incredible, but electronic fusion must always be confronted with the winning question: Can it sound good live. It’s sounds contrary, but hey; we learned our lesson with DragonForce, and EVERY modern pop star from Lady Gaga to Katy Perry. If I can see clear quality live footage, then they’ll be top quality for sure!

This is still amazing work! Well polished! Very intriguing, and satiable for people of every walk of musical taste! Poetic! Complex!

I Am I: Event Horizon


So, after several years with DragonForce, ZP has left and started up with a new band called “I Am I”. So now their debut album “Event Horizon” is out, and being such a huge fan of ZP, I’ve decided to write a review.
Of course, the hard part is not comparing this piece of work with DragonForce’s sound or playing style. In fact, I’ll do my best to not even mention them. Still, many fans are probably looking at ZP the same way they probably looked at Vince Neil when he left Motley Crue… or maybe Brian Had Welch wen he left KoRn, since he shows no signs of coming back. But I’ve heard all the tracks and I must say; it’s a formidable masterpiece, kind of like Steve Perry’s Street Talk when compared to Journey.


Here’s The Line-Up:
ZP Theart – Vocals
Jacob Ziemba – Guitar
Neil Salmon – Bass
Phil Martini – Drums
Jake Thorsen – Guitar

Hearing this albun is an interesting experience. You’ll almost forget that ZP switched bands until you realize that the guitar riffs are slower. A majority of the tracks like “In The Air Tonight” (Not a Phil Colins cover) seem to have familiar lyrical approaches, but the absence of Li and Totman make them sound like Axel Rudi Pell songs. “Stay A While” and “Chill In The Air” are almost on the verge of romantic lyrics. “King in Ruins” (comprised of a beautiful guitar-piano unison), being the only tender ballad on the album, a true change of direction for one like ZP.
Jacob Ziemba and Jake Thorsen share dual guitar duties – and I’m going to break my vow of comparison – they were very much in sync. Some riffs that Li and Totman did were very messy, not in unison at all until the arrival of Hudson. These two on the other hand (Ziemba and Thorsen) seem to have a very melodic approach that would make Frontiers Records put dibs on them for a life long contract. Phil Martini is a master drummer, and the most steady member of the group, and most versatile it seems. He’s really the only moderately speed-oriented player of the band, and only on specific tracks. As for Neil Salmon (bass); the principle of being drowned out remains the same. His playing is almost to ensure that the band doesn’t sound flat, but fails to really stand out other than “king In Ruins”.

Overall, I would call this album a real “Blizzard of Ozz” (even though Ozzy was technically fired from his previous band). You think the singer is totally screwed and than… it’s like instant death from above with pure awesomeness. Like “Street Talk” vs. Journey’s Frontiers. I loved hearing it, and it showed that ZP never lost his fire. I recommend this to anyone who craves good music. Hopefully, unlike “Street Talk”, it will be followed up with EVEN more success and a solid line-up.

Buy on Itunes:

http://itunes.apple.com/gb/album/event-horizon/id549898923

Evil Twin Sister


 
 
 
 

Here’s the line-up:

Adam- Vocals, Bass
Rey-Drums
Sergio-Guitar
M of The P- Rhythm Guitar, Back up Vocals

 

So far, from what I’m hearing, Sergio has a very interesting guitar approach, especially in Medicine Hands. I really enjoyed Rey’s drumming a lot. But so far, they sound like Rap Rock, but not to the point of being nu metal like Linkin Park. It’s almost like Red Hot Chili Peppers meets Beastie Boys. Adam has one hell of an eccentric voice, like a frantic Eminem. That was highly unexpected. Still, I do appreciate the uniqueness this band offers, but with fronting vocals like those… they’ll probably blow up overnight (and that’s NOT a compliment). If Adam would sound a bit more dignified (his voice almost screeches at some points within the songs), then maybe they’d sound more appealing to listen to. I mean really, it sounds like they’re clowning, which isn’t what you want any listener (or scout) to think.

Yet so far, I little objections…

I Heard Wonderfool…

Originally, I was on YouTube trying to see what became of Tracii Guns, and instead, I stumbled across some footage of him playing at his regular club circuit. Instead of Jizzy Pearl on Lead, I see this ugly girl with Dread locks and Pink Hair with more tattoos than Brian Welch. Her name is Dilana Smith/Robichaux, and I was a bit impressed that she could sound like a female Jizzy. Still, that stick only lasted for about two months, and she’s apparently pissed at Tracii for some reason.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ugly, Yes?

So Anyways, I decided to give her work a bit of a listen, starting with the album Wonderfool. A few years late to be reviewing it, but I must say: that wasn’t expected at all.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
From what I did hear, her songwriting (assuming she wrote these), was very down-to-earth. I guess someone could see the realism in tracks like “I Kissed A Butterfly” but songs like “To All Planets” went over my head in terms of structure. The track “Great Escape” was in total compromise to every other track on the album, which is basically reflecting this crazy girl trying to be too fast for love like Motley Crue (but even Gun N’ Roses have a cheesy ballad on the raunchiest album of the 80’s).
So far, I like Dilana (as long as I don’t have to look at her). The bad girl thing is overplayed, but at least she can make a well rounded equation with her songwriting and musicianship. I might actually listen to Inside Out. She has some album (I hear) called Dilana and the crazy troll who lived under the bridge… Is that self-imagery?

Whatever. Great album.

Amerakin Overdose – Eponymous Album


 

 

 

Okay? Here’s the Line-up:

Cody – Vocals
Andrew – Backing Vocals
Freeman – Guitar
Brick – Drums
The Human – Keys/Sequencing
? – Bass
Enygma – Hype and Shenanigans

 

 

I’ll just ignore the eccentric names and get straight to the album…


Just from what I’m hearing, these guys sound as if they’ve fused heavy metal with electronic melodies, almost like industrial music. The lyricism of Cody is very unstructured (not that it has to be), and it sounds like it’s resting uneasily on the radically thin line of screamo and rap. I’m not sure what genre this lands in, but at least that gives it some uniqueness. He and Andrew are in perfect sync, almost like the Nevermind album.
The guitars by Freeman were very interesting to accent the features in this music, but ? (if that’s the actual name or an uncredited musician) is practically drowned out by the Sequencing of… the human? Are these actual stage names? If so that’s really confusing and incapacitating.

What the hell is Enygma doing? I’ll just ignore his existence then.

I’m full of more confusion than anything listening to these musicians, but the overall sound still holds with uniqueness. I’m just not sure if that’s gonna be the same mentality of the general public, considering the lack of actual lyrical structure.

Texas Hippie Coalition – Peacemaker

Here’s the Line-up:

Big Dad Ritch – Vocals

John Exall – Bass Guitar

Wes Wallace – Guitar

Timmy Braun – Drums

 

 

 

 

 

 

I saw the title of these guys, and I was thinking, “Oh great, a Psychedelic band”. Of course, the “hippie” part is what through me off. But then I heard one of their newer singles: “Turn It Up“, and I thought Pantera came back! One thing I’ve learned permanently is that Texas knows how to rock, especially after hearing Pantera and Drowning Pool (other good bands).

 

 

 

 

So I’ve heard the album Peacemaker, but they sound more like “Hell Raisers”. The music has been described as New Age Metal, but these really know how to rock. Their approach to the music is unorthodox, and they seem to have taken Red Dirt Metal to a WHOLE new level. Bug Dad Ritch is insane with the vocals; he has no speed limits in songs like “Damn You to Hell”, and has versatility with his vocals that grab you whether high or low range like on the track “Wicked”. “Turn It Up” deserves to be a club anthem: it’s narrative style makes it surprisingly unique and addictive. I’m sure many girls will take their clothes off to it. Wallace is a ten out of ten with his lead: you can tell Zakk Wylde to move the hell over. Exall and Braun have a powerful rhythm section: A Rex Paul and Vinnie Brown type duo. Tracks “Sex & Drugs & Rock and Roll”, “Don’t Come Lookin'”, and “Hands Up” make you feel like a criminal or a real cowboy, but album itself stands apart. It separates the posers from the guys who really know their stuff. A Jonas Brothers fan would run from this! Who knows, they might even call the sheriff on this one.

I give this a straight up five for it’s sheer genius:


Buy on Itunes:
http://itunes.apple.com/us/album/peacemaker/id544969053