This is wonderful!
From the new Taylor Hawkins album ‘KOTA’.
This is wonderful!
From the new Taylor Hawkins album ‘KOTA’.
I’m loving this new track from Thumpermonkey, “Tzizimime” taken from Electricity, which will be released on Friday 13 October 2017 on Rockosmos.
KLOGR release their third studio album ‘Keystone’ (mixed by Grammy winning producer David Bottrill (Stone Sour, Muse, Rush, Tool and more) on Friday 6 October 2017 via Zeta Factory (distributed in the UK/Europe by PHD).
The artwork is a piece of a painting by renowned Italian artist, Andrea Saltini.
Keystone is the third album from Italian-American band Klogr (pronounced Kay-logger). A band that I’d never heard of until now, but isn’t that the joy of this project.
Musically, the band sits somewhere between alternative rock and alternative metal. The album is very nicely produced and mixed. It has a warm, full sound that suits the melodic arrangements. The guitars are heavy without sounding harsh.
When you listen to album for the first few listens, if you’re anything like me then you’ll try to reach for comparisons. The album reminds me in part of Stone Sour fused with Freak Kitchen with a little Seven7 thrown in for good measure.
The album opens with what sounds like the start of the Star Trek theme tune, but accompanied by a children’s plinky piano. (“Sleeping through the seasons”, track 1) Then the guitars introduce a chug-chug-chug-chug riff. It’s catchy and melodic.
And so the album continues. “Prison of light” (track 2) features a nice ascending riff; “Technocracy” (track 3) is a fast-paced track with a twisting-turning riff; “The echoes of sin” (track 4) has a Dream Theater vibe to it; “Pride before the fall” (track 5) sounds a bit like a slowed-down “Technocracy”.
For me, the stand-out track is “Something’s in the air” (track 6). It’s a mid-paced, chugging rock track with a beautifully heavy, slide-y riff. I could listen to it all day. It’s heavy, it’s melodic, it’s interesting and varied. Brilliant stuff!
“Drag you back” (track 7) is built around a fluttering riff; “Sirens’ song” (track 8) is a short track that sounds like it was recorded underwater, and leads beautifully into “Dark tides” (track 9) which has an ’80s metal ballad feel to it.
“Silent witness” (track 10) opens with a bass riff that gives way to a complex guitar riff, that changes directions. Every. Few seconds. “Enigmatic smile” probably has the most metal riff on the album but gives way to a melodic rock track.
The album plays out to “The wall of illusion” which probably encompasses everything that Klogr have thrown at us so far in this album.
And then it ends.
To be honest, there is little to criticize the album for. Some of the songs do begin to sound a little bit same-y as you progress through the album, but that would only really become a problem if the songs weren’t great. And these are really good songs. There is more than a little prog influence contained in the tracks on this album, and that is also a good thing. The songs have dynamics, and a shape, that each tell a musical story.
I really like this album. I can see myself returning to it again and again.
What more could you ask for from a piece of music?
Review score: 85%
Twenty-three minutes of progressive rock magnificence illustrated by Nathaniel Barlam.
“Supper’s Ready” appears on the 1972 Genesis album Foxtrot.
Recorded and mixed by Kurt Ballow at Godcity Studios, Witchcity from 2 to 12 January 2008. Mastered by Alan Douches at Westwestside in New Windsor, NY on 22 January 2008. Released by Level-Plane Records on 15 April 2008.
This appears to be the one and only release from New Hampshire hardcore/grunge band Transistor Transistor.
New Hampshire, New Hampshire, so good they named it twice.
Having been mostly reviewing symphonic and avant-garde black metal bands for the last few weeks this requires a little change of gear. But having established quite firmly a few months back that it no longer takes me by surprise every time I listen to a hardcore album and discover that I like it, it shouldn’t take a detective to hear that this album gets the thumbs up from me, too.
As well as the usual hardcore elements, there is more than a dollop of Bob Mould-inspired alternative/post-punk rock infused in this particular recipe of high energy, shouty-vocaled hard rock.
A few highlights: The cheeky riff in “Brass bones” (track 3).
There are not many albums that make me smile involuntarily while listening to them on first listen, but this was definitely one. This is inventive, creative, exploratory and downright exciting. It’s not perfect but I fully expect it to grow on me and with me.
Review score: 96%
Recorded at the Old Chapel by Gavin Johnson. Mixed and mastered at V-Edition Studios by Gavin Johnson. Produced by Gavin Johnson and Steroid Freak Pussy.
With the chorus of the opening song “Pussy blowout” (track 1) including the line “Everybody wants a little bit of pussy / Everybody needs a little bit of pussy” it’s quite clear — as if the band’s name itself wasn’t enough of a clue — that UK sleaze rockers Steroid Freak Pussy are going down the in-your-face sexual imagery path of the likes of WASP, Faster Pussycat and Mötley Crüe.
It’s not really my thing really, either the lyrics or the music. That said, there is a bit of a Warrior Soul sound lurking in there somewhere but the cheap lyrics put it off for me, to be honest.
“Fire your guns” (track 2) is an energetic rocker that would probably sound great blasted loudly on the motorway. It’s probably my favourite track on the EP, but that’s not really saying much, to be honest.
“Nitroglycerine” (track 3) is built around a start-stop riff that is planted firmly in the sleaze rock genre, and features Anneka Latta’s vocals on the chorus (or pre-chorus).
“Suicide nation” (track 4) has a punk vibe and chugs along cheerily but there isn’t much to it. “Wrong side of right” (track 5) reminds me a little of early Motörhead in its attitude but it doesn’t have enough of a riff to interest me. It’s sleaze-by-numbers,
“Shut your mouth” (track 6) opens promisingly with a chugging riff and pounding drums. Alongside “Fire your guns” this is probably one of the strongest songs on the disc, but despite the strong intro it fails to deliver much during the verses,
This album wasn’t really for me. I was never really into glam or sleaze metal. This has a very 80s LA feel to it, in attitude if not entirely musical content. They weren’t so close to Warrior Soul (a band that I’ve seen live and would rank among my favourites) to redeem them for me. Thankfully the overly sexualized lyrics didn’t extend far beyond the opening track but by then they’d done their damage.
Review score: 45%
Produced, engineering, mixed and mastered by Andy Sneap. Recorded in the summer of 2003 at Backstage Productions, Derbyshire.
I’m running hugely behind on reviews this autumn and for some reason I really thought I had already written this review. Probably because I’ve listened to this album more than probably any other album I’ve reviewed during this project. It sat in my car CD player for weeks. Last.fm tells me that I’ve played 90 Stampin’ Ground tracks in the last 90 days; they are my fourth most-played band in the last six months.
This was one of those albums that hit a chord with me on my first play through. Stampin’ Ground from Cheltenham, Gloucestershire here in the UK play fusion of hardcore and thrash. Imagine Exodus, Slayer, Hatebreed and Biohazard forming a supergroup and you more or less have their sound down to a tee.
A New Darkness Upon Us (2003) is the band’s fourth, and to date, last full-length album. According to Encyclopaedia Metallum the band formed in 1995 then took a hiatus from 2006 until 2014 when they reformed. I’d definitely love to hear both their back catalogue and whatever they might release next.
Keeping with my tradition of writing really short reviews for the albums that I love most, I find myself writing the conclusion already.
This is an album I could listen to on repeat for days – and have done. While the album isn’t entirely perfect, I can’t but give it a full 10/10: the flaws just don’t seem important enough to quibble over. I can see me listening to this album for a long time yet.
It is discoveries like this one that makes me love this project and probably is why I am running behind on reviews (it’s currently early October): I just don’t want it to end.
Review score: 100%