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LacunaCoil2014_2

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Kyng2014_3

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EveToAdam2014_5

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Cilver3

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Simone Simons on the physics of The Quantum Enigma

The name Epica says it all. This is truly epic music, combining the classical and metal genres, challenging the listener’s senses and mind. Led by vocalist Simone Simons and guitarist/vocalist Mark Jansen, Epica has been a leader in female-fronted metal since 2003. With genre-defining albums like 2007′s The Divine Conspiracy and 2009′s Design Your Universe (review), a Live Metal favorite, already in its discography, it would be easy for a band with a beautiful singer with amazing pipes to sell out and conform to the mainstream rather than the route Epica has chosen. Preconceived notions that this is just another symphonic-goth metal band led by a bombshell, writing cheesy pop-metal songs are way off base. In fact, this has never been the case. Epica is more Dimmu Borgir than it is Within Temptation. And it certainly doesn’t hurt that two former members of death metallers God Dethroned have joined the band’s ranks in recent years.

We’ve talked to Simone Simons a few times before, first after the band’s release of The Classical Conspiracy (a two-disc live performance with a full orchestra in Miskolc, Hungary) (review), and then after the release of Design Your Universe. Since that time, Simons has become a mother and married (to Oliver Palotai of Kamelot), yet still she found time to record Epica’s latest brilliant and maybe most complex album to date, The Quantum Enigma (May 6, 2014, Nuclear Blast). Now we finish tour Epica trilogy (hopefully we’ll start another soon) as Simons gives us the details of  the new album and a brief lesson in physics, and tells us how she has gained perspective as a new mother. Read the rest of this entry »

Brian Marshall, left, and Mark Tremonti of Alter Bridge

Brian Marshall, left, and Mark Tremonti of Alter Bridge

ALTER BRIDGE LIVE PHOTOS
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Review by Greg Maki
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We haven’t finished the fourth month, but I have a surefire candidate for the best show of 2014. And the band pulled it off with its singer fighting a cold or some other malady affecting his voice.

The last time I saw Alter Bridge in concert, they were co-headlining the 2011 Carnival of Madness tour with Theory of a Deadman, also here at Baltimore’s Rams Head Live. It was a midweek show, with Black Stone Cherry and two other bands also on the bill. If I recall correctly, it was a good bit short of a sellout. This time, they came to town on the most un-rock ‘n’ roll night of the week, Monday, with support only from Monster Truck, a Canadian band with which few in the audience were familiar. And they sold it out well in advance. Read the rest of this entry »

AlterBridge2014_17

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Wovenwar, featuring the talents of Jordan Mancino (drums), Nick Hipa (guitar), Phil Sgrosso (guitar) and Josh Gilbert (bass/vocals) of San Diego, California based metal act As I Lay Dying, and Shane Blay (vocals) of Oh, Sleeper, has just released their first single titled “All Rise” off the band’s upcoming self-titled debut. Listen to the track inside from wovenwar.com, which is the final mastered version that will appear on the album dropping in late summer 2014. Read the rest of this entry »

inflames2014
“This one is for you Jesterheads,” reads a recent Facebook post on In Flames official page in reference to its upcoming album. Does this mean a return to the melodic death metal style of earlier albums? An entirely heavier yet different sound? We haven’t had the chance to hear anything just like anyone else, but if I had to guess, I’d say the new album will be a combination of both. Oldschool fans are dying for a heavy death metal record from In Flames, and I think the band wants to deliver. On the other hand, they probably don’t want to alienate new fans that have come aboard on newer albums Come Clarity (review), A Sense of Purpose (review) and Sounds of a Playground Fading (review), so I’m thinking maybe we get the best of both worlds here? Only September will tell. View the album cover art inside. Read the rest of this entry »

Review by Greg Maki
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There’s nowhere to hide in a trio. Whether they want it or not, the band members are always in something of a spotlight. For Kyng, that works just fine. Read the rest of this entry »

Monster Energy’s Carolina Rebellion has announced band performance times for the two-day festival, which returns to Rock City Campgrounds at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C., on May 3 and 4. The lineup includes Avenged Sevenfold and Kid Rock, along with Rob Zombie, Five Finger Death Punch and more.  Read the rest of this entry »

foxy-shazam-press-photo
We almost missed this one! Foxy Shazam have released its fifth album GONZO, available now for free on bandcamp! This is the band’s first independent release since 2005, self-produced and recorded with famed engineer Steve Albini. GONZO is available for free stream and download at this location. Read inside for more album info. Read the rest of this entry »