Magnum – “Live At The Symphony Hall”

Magnum – “Live At The Symphony Hall” 2CD / 3LP (Steamhammer / SPV)  Following the release of their hugely successful “Lost On The Road To Eternity” album, which many including myself saw England’s most famous pomp rockers return full circle to their roots, Magnum embarked on a 42 date tour, culminating in a final show at Birmingham’s Symphony Hall last April. It was truly a special moment for vocalist Bob Catley and guitarist Tony Clarkin, not because they both live in the area and as such this was a hometown gig – but somewhat embarrassingly, Magnum had only played Birmingham… Continue reading

Evergrey – “The Atlantic”

Evergrey – “The Atlantic” (AFM Records)  And so we come to the concluding album of the trilogy that began in 2014 with “Hymns For The Broken”. “The Atlantic” is Evergrey’s 11th release and as we might expect from this Swedish band renowned for their complex and progressive material, it’s deep and in this particular case, also highly diverse. Viewing life as a journey across the ocean taking in its experiences of beauty and darkness, fortune and grief, love and hate, despair and joy and everything connected with it, what could be more apt than to title this album “The Atlantic”?… Continue reading

The Three Tremors – “The Three Tremors”

The Three Tremors – “The Three Tremors” (Steel Cartel)  ‘…Three times louder than a sonic boom, three fingers on the hand of doom!..’. F–k yeah, no kidding! That’s exactly what you get here from Tim ‘Ripper’ Owens (Judas Priest, Iced Earth, Dio Disciples), Harry ‘The Tyrant’ Conklin (Jag Panzer, Satan’s Host, Titan Force), and Sean ‘The Hell Destroyer’ Peck (Cage, Denner / Shermann, Death Dealer) – and not just from one but all simultaneously!!! If air raid crescendo screaming is what you crave then these 3 renowned sonic shockers will give you what you’re looking for in the 12 searing… Continue reading

Dust Bolt – “Trapped In Chaos”

Dust Bolt – “Trapped In Chaos” (Napalm Records)  Wow, like 12 years on and Dust Bolt are here with their 4th album – and even singer / guitarist Lenny Bruce is surprised! Despite his very humble posture of almost feeling knighted at his band’s success, Dust Bolt have come a long way, at each step growing but always in line with fans’ expectations but never forgetting their past of ‘… playing every shit hole that has electricity…’! “Trapped In Chaos” is pay dirt for all those years of dedication and focus, containing 11 tracks of Dust Bolt’s trademark thrash n burn, but… Continue reading

Come Taste The Band – “Reignition”

Come Taste The Band – “Reignition” (AOR Heaven)  With their origins going back the late 90s as an acclaimed Deep Purple tribute band, playing hundreds of concerts throughout Scandinavia, Come Taste The Band have unsurprisingly been involved in collaborations with Glenn Hughes, Graham Bonnet, Joe Lynn Turner, Bernie Marsden and Norwegian singer Jorn Lande. After celebrating their 20th anniversary in 2017, guitarist Jo Henning Kaasin sat down with vocalist Doogie White (Rainbow/Michael Schenker) to write new material resulting in this amazing album, featuring not just White handling lead vocals for 6 of the 8 tracks, but Joe Lynn Turner singing on the remaining… Continue reading

Soilwork – “Verkligheten”

Soilwork – “Verkligheten” (Nuclear Blast Records)  Oh wow, Björn ‘Speed’ Strid has really hit the mark this time – although you may need a few listens to take in all of this stupendous release, such is its depth! Formed in the mid 90s as part of Sweden’s melodic death scene, and certainly retaining an aspect of that in Strid’s deathly growls and hoarse vocals, Soilwork have since come a long way to becoming a modern metal band. Some 4 years in the making, “Verkligheten” (‘reality’) continues from both its predecessor albums, be it 2013’s “The Living Infinite” or “The Ride… Continue reading

Flotsam And Jetsam – “End Of Chaos”

Flotsam And Jetsam – “End Of Chaos” (AFM Records)  I never thought I’d say this but at last comes an album that could rival “Doomsday For The Deceiver”! The first album in Kerrang! history to attain a 6k mark, this debut threw the bar so high that sadly this Arizona thrash band would never surpass. However, the “End Of Chaos” certainly hits the mark – the first to do so in the band’s 37 year career. Almost relegated to being a band touring off past glorious (and that by now long used up Metallica connection), Flotsam And Jetsam got back… Continue reading

Raven – “Screaming Murder Death From Above: Live In Aalborg”

Raven – “Screaming Murder Death From Above: Live In Aalborg” (Steamhammer / SPV)  Gotta hand it to these Gallagher brothers, they’ve handled everything from crushed legs to now heart attacks given the sad departure from music of longtime drummer Joe Hasselvander. Still, it’s all water off a ducks back for these two, who’ve soldiered right from the days of NWOBHM through thrash n grunge to remain a name, nay legends in their own right to those appreciative of their never say die Geordie attitude and moreover, live shows that are so intense that in the 1980s justified a genre classification all … Continue reading

John Garcia – “John Garcia And The Band Of Gold”

John Garcia – “John Garcia And The Band Of Gold” (Napalm Records)  The Kyuss legend and founder of desert rock institutions such as Unida, Slo-Burn, Hermano and Vista Chino is back! After 2 solo records and the “Coyote Unplugged“ tour, John Garcia has returned to doing what he does best – stripped no frills desert rock. A dryer, modern day successor to the backwater swamp rock of Creedence Clearwater Revival, Garcia brings his talent honed from almost 30 years through the instantly catchy, laid back grooves here. Not quite stoner to put you into a haze, there’s also elements of… Continue reading

Woven Man – “Revelry (In Our Arms)”

Woven Man – “Revelry (In Our Arms)” (Undergroove)  Formed by Acrimony’s guitarist Lee ‘Roy’ Davies (and formerly of power-violence crew Black Eye Riot and riff monsters Lifer), Woven Man is low driven pagan heavy rock with elements of doom, sludge and stoner. Heavily influenced by Welsh culture and films like “The Wicker Man”, this debut mini album actually begins with a nod to Acrimony in opener ‘Calling Down The Leaves’, which is follow on from ‘Leaves Of Mellow Grace’, both of which are inspired by Davies’s village of Tirydail. Both are similar sound wise in having dirty syrup stoner riffs although the tempo here is much faster… Continue reading