Hard Rock

Skyscraper – Elevation Review

Skyscraper – Elevation Review

“I want to begin this review of Skyscraper’s début, Elevation, with a game of complete the lyrics, from sixth track “Walk Through Fire.” “I walk through fire…” (a) “while in ferocious combat with the dragon sent by the Elven armies,” (b) “in order to emulate the fiery depths of Hell for my unification with Lucifer,” or (c) “for you.” Done? If you chose (a) or (b) then I regret to inform you that neither option is correct, but if you liked either, I would suggest that this record may not align with your usual musical preferences (and that you should book an appointment with your local shrink and/or exorcist).” Well, I flunked that pop quiz bigtime. I hate pop quizzes.

Audrey Horne – Pure Heavy Review

Audrey Horne – Pure Heavy Review

“It pains me to say it, but the best American rock band hails from Norway. Their name is Audrey Horne and they’re mercy ruling the competition out of the game. This brilliant, idiot-manchild side project of Ice Dale (Enslaved) and Thomas Tofthagen (Sahg) has blazed a shockingly catchy trail of pure rock lunacy since 2005s Confessions and Alcohol. Their eponymous 2010 album was a positively brilliant amalgam of Faith No More and Stone Temple Pilots, surpassed only by 2013s Youngblood for skin snagging hooks and mega memorable rock anthems. This is the kind of band that serves up frothy, foamy good times music with so much swagger they can barely walk in a straight line. That’s right, it’s big pimpin, hard rocking, dirty rolling, greasy rock that sticks to the ribs and makes you cooler just by listening.” Resistance is futile, you will be converted to the Horde of Horne.

Lou Siffer and the Howling Demons – At Your Service Review

Lou Siffer and the Howling Demons – At Your Service Review

Lou Siffer and the Howling Demons are the bastard offspring of a devil-may-care attitude and a party roaring like a room full of V8 engines. Hailing from, of all places, the blackened heart of Sweden, this band of evildoers loudly spew their volatile and contagious brand of aggressive hard rock and gruff, gasoline powered heavy metal to bring you their second full-length jammed with fast cars, horror, death and violence. At Your Service continues on from where The Devil’s Ride left off, combining the familiar influences of Chrome Division, Volbeat, Corrosion of Conformity and even The Misfits, leaving you with a funky taste in your mouth that smacks of familiarity and a lot of devilish fun!” Looks like the party’s in your mouth and everyone is…invited.

High Spirits – You Are Here Review

High Spirits – You Are Here Review

“Running searches on the vast database that is the Metal Archives can be a fascinating – and sometimes hilarious – way of looking at the genre at a whole. For example, filtering for “lyrical themes”, unsurprisingly, finds that “nihilism” and “national socialism” trump out “rock”, “rocking” and “fun” in the heavy metal thematic lexicon. We sure are a cynical bunch, aren’t we? I’d like to think that Chicago-based traditional metal champion Chris Black (fellow music journalist and leader of a number of lauded traditional heavy metal groups such as Dawnbringer and Pharaoh, both of which I’ve unfortunately managed to neglect) himself went on a sojourn into these nether reaches of the Archives and decided that enough was enough. Black clearly has no time for modern metal cynicism, and his one-man throwback project High Spirits, with lyrical themes tagged in the Archives with “rocking” and “being in high spirits,” is about as light-hearted and easily palatable as modern metal gets.” Chris Black continues to be the new black in the world of throwback metal.

Miracle Master – Tattooed Woman Review

Miracle Master – Tattooed Woman Review

“Hot on the heels of Steel Druhm’s review of Crematory’s Antiserum and sticking with zee Germans, we have Miracle Master’s Tattooed Woman, which delivers an unhealthily large dose of Dio worship, a smattering of modern American hard rockers Shinedown and the growlings of Monster Magnet.” Madam X loves her catchy hard rock, but can she make it through a whole review without Jorn nuthugging? Take your bets now!

Monster Magnet – Last Patrol Review

Monster Magnet – Last Patrol Review

“That sketchy van is back in town. You know, the one with New Jersey plates, mushrooms and wizards painted on the side and the “Free Candy” bumper sticker. And as usual, there’s more smoke pouring from the tinted windows than from the tailpipe. That can only mean Monster Magnet is back to drop more of their spaced-out, stoner-themed hard rock to conjures the era of bongos, free love and lava lamps. Coming off 2010s masterful Mastermind release, Dave Wyndorf and company had some big sandals to fill.” So how do you fill a sandal exactly? Monster Magnet fills it with rowdy, stripper club friendly rock and that can’t be a bad thing, can it?

Magnus Karlsson – Free Fall Review

Magnus Karlsson – Free Fall Review

“Hot on the heels of Jorn’s Traveller, Free Fall is living, breathing, tangible proof that Frontiers Records know their 70’s flavored hard rock! Picking up Free Fall is a little like solving a riddle… getting thrown head first into a melting pot and it’s quite literally a who’s who of hard rock or heavy metal. At the forefront of Free Fall you have the man of the hour, Swedish, heavy metal multi-instrumentalist, classically trained wizard and songwriter Magnus Karlsson axeman to the likes of Primal Fear, Allen/Lande, Last Tribe and a host of others. Do you like the slick hard rock style of metal that Jorn and Allen/Lande traffic in? Does the idea of an album with 9 vocalists work for you? This thing is directly in Madam X’s wheelhouse, so she will help you answer the above questions.

Jorn – Traveller Review

Jorn – Traveller Review

‘For Angry Metal regulars, Norway’s Jorn Lande needs NO introduction! This leaves me in a quandary… I need an opening paragraph so you get a repeat of what you already know. As Lord Steel Druhm has already mentioned in his review of Bring Heavy Rock To The Land, Lande has a massive career spanning across solo, group and collaborative projects Ark, Masterplan, Beyond Twilight, Avantasia and Allen/Lande that easily makes him one of the most recognized voices in the industry. Well surprise, surprise, hot on the heels of Symphonic, Lande adds another notch to his well-worn belt with the much anticipated all original release of Traveller.” Well, it looks like the days of Madam X’s unabashed Jorn worship have finally reached a middle. Does that mean you must bring your own heavy rock to the land (BYOHRTL)? Read and find out!

Jorn – Symphonic Review

Jorn – Symphonic Review

Really? The almighty Jorn Lande needs an introduction? I’m sure Steel Druhm has probably covered this before, but alright, so where to start – He’s the Father of all the Gods and is usually seen with his two ravens close at hand, them being Huginn (Thought) and Munin (Memory) [for pictures of said ravens check out the covers of Spirit Black, Dio, We Bring Heavy Rock to the Land and now of course Symphonic]. I see Wikipedia says he’s the God of magick, wisdom, wit and learning…fkkkkkk wrong Wiki page, that’s what happens when you get your Norse Gods confused (I swear it was the ravens that threw me)!

Adrenaline Mob – Omerta

Adrenaline Mob – Omerta

I’m a Russell Allen fanboy. I sing his praises every chance I get because he’s one of the best vocalists to ever grace the metal genre. Whether its his work with Symphony X, Allen/Lande or Star One, his vocals make good music great and great music stupendous. It was only a matter of time however, until we found out what his vocals could do for average or bad music.