Rumors Heard in MySpace, Episode 11

Happy New Year, Waveriders! I know that most of you will be heading out to some warm and, hopefully, safe place to celebrate the end of 2008 and consume some liquid indulgency to welcome in 2009. So, Racer and I want to wish you all the best. Don’t get behind the wheel after sucking down some sudsy elixir or mixed love potion . . . and remember to wear protection, oh promiscuous ones! Though we love you, we don’t need more of you! To ring in the New Year with hopes of positivity and growth, we’re going to focus on a number of bands that are releasing new goodies in the coming months. Yeah, most of its metal . . . that’s not a bad thing, is it? Not from where I’m standing. Well . . . sitting. It’s a bitch to type standing up. Try it sometime. You’ll know what I mean.

Enough of this nonsensical banter . . . on with the Rumors!

Out of the fog enshrouded banks of the San Francisco Bay comes a band that I stumbled on about three years ago. Way back then, the music that I heard from Cloakwheel was this heavy progressive thrash instrumental type stuff (probably because they hadn’t worked out the vocal portions yet) and I thought that these guys had a pretty cool sound. Well, fast forward to the end of 2008 and I’ve heard some new tracks with vocals and all, and let me tell ya’ . . . their debut album should turn many a head! The tracks that they have posted on their page showcase songs with strong vocals filled with their own nuance, great bass and guitar work, and some wonderfully colorful drumming. I shit thee not . . . check out the tune “Oceans of Time.” What’s that sound? Oh yes . . . that is the sound of heads turning. The album, entitled This Crooked Path You’ve Drawn, was released on December 12th and if you’re interested in more info, swing by the bands page and check ‘em out. You won’t be sorry with this one!

I loved Ashes of the Wake from Lamb of God. I went to see them on tour with Slipknot and felt like a team of nut socking ninjas used my ballsack as a speed bag. I felt a little bit of a letdown with Sacrament, but that was because Ashes was so damn good. Now, I paid a visit to their MySpace page and feel like everything I know about metal has been wiped clear from my being. Waveriders, if their new single, “Contractor” is any indication of the brilliance of their new album, then Lamb of God have laid claim to the title of Kings of Heavy Metal and it will take the combined might of every sub-genre to knock them off of that mountain. In-freaking-credible! Filled with dynamic breaks, trademark speed drumming, killer riffage, and the politically scathing lyrics of Randy Blythe, dear Lord . . . my heart is racing with anticipation for this release. Oh, and isn’t this nice! As if to pay homage to your friendly neighborhood Pope, Lamb of God is releasing Wrath on my birthday! February 24th, y’all . . . write it down. Get me something nice.

Oh, and something else that is coming out on the 24th of February (hint, hint) is the new God Forbid album, Earthsblood. From what I’ve gathered about the album is that, as is common with the band, it’s brimming with social and political observations meant to get us listeners to stop and think about our actions from time to time. The music is as heavy as anything I’ve heard them do in the past and, as per usual, features some stellar guitar work. Now, what would be really cool is if, since both bands are releasing albums on the same day, that God Forbid goes out on tour with Lamb of God. They could call it the Good God Tour. Or maybe . . . God Only Knows Tour. Or how about . . . The Lamb of Good God Forbid Tour! Alright. I’m out. Anyway, it appears that God Forbid will be traveling down the European highways for the better part of two months, so maybe we’ll get them back home this summer. Fingers crossed!

Norwegian death thrashers, Susperia, have a new album scheduled for release in early 2009. I don’t have a lot of info outside of the album title (Speaking Killing Words) and that it will be available for the masses in the very near future. The band has mentioned that the new album will exhibit the fast and heavy qualities that we’ve come to expect from the band, and all with a touch of melody. Yeah. I’m looking forward to that, coz’ y’all know how much I loved Unlimited.

I received news that our good friend Jeff Sanders of Mountain Mirrors is hard at work on the follow up of the magnificent Dreadnought album that came out earlier in the year. He’s working with a rhythm section in Stockholm, Sweden called OddGrooves. These guys apparently throw down rhythms in odd or non-traditional meters, which can be used as samples for other musicians worldwide. I’m not sure on all the in’s and out’s of how this process works, but if I understand it correctly, it opens the door to create some wonderful compositions that the home studio can’t offer otherwise. No date yet on the new Mountain Mirrors release, but I’m sure Jeff will keep us posted. And if he doesn’t, we’ll just ask him.

New Orleans based prog-rockers, Abigail’s Ghost are putting the finishing touches on their next album. I don’t have a title for you at the moment, but I do know that pre-orders will be taken after January 10th as that is the scheduled date for the mastering to be complete. If you haven’t heard Abigail’s Ghost, then you’ll definitely want to check these cats out. They have that proggy vibe going on with a lot of ambient tones washing through the music and, when you least expect it, the music explodes in a furry of distorted riffs. Kinda’ reminds me of Deadwing-era Porcupine Tree, so if you’re a fan of that style rock, these guys oughta’ perk up the ears.

Finnish masters of symphonic metal, Nightwish, are releasing a CD/DVD in March. From what I can tell, it captures the band live in Hong Kong and various other points of interest along their massively popular Dark Passion Play Tour. Being a big fan of the bands last two albums, I can’t help but get excited about this one. Though I enjoyed the last DVD that featured Tarja Turunen on vocals, I was bugged by her stage presence and her constant waving at the audience. I’m curious to see how Anette Olzon handles the duty of front person. I know she can sing like an angel, but now . . . does she have the charismatic strength to lead a band such as Nightwish in a live setting. I’ll be letting you know what I think in March.

On a local slant, San Diego’s Incomplete Neighbor is reportedly in the last days of recording and prep for their first album. I have sketchy details at best pertaining to this release, but what I do know is that the band is working feverishly to complete the disc and release it in early Spring of 2009. Now, if you haven’t heard these guys, which I’m sure a lot of you haven’t, then swing by their page and listen to the four tracks from their demo. They’ve got this great alt-rock sound going on and dude’s voice eerily reminds me of Bono. That’s a good thing coz’ really . . . who doesn’t love Bono’s voice?

Word has come down from the mad geniuses of East of the Wall. It looks like they’re working on a split disc with Spring with Rosetta and Year of No Light. Excited? Me? Just a little. In no way am I even remotely close to being tired of the bands monstrously epic album, Farmer’s Almanac. It’s just that at this time of year, I’m like a greedy little kid who can’t get enough presents under the Christmas tree. I gotta’ have more East of the Wall. And if I’m going to be exposed to two more bands in the process of getting more East of the Wall, well . . . all the better! It’s slated to be released through Level Plain Records. Stay tuned for that! Also . . . before I forget, the lads from EOTW who are also in Biclops are in the planning stages of recording a new Biclops album. Holy shit, I say. It’s like Christmas is running all year long!

I posted a review a few months back from a band called Machinery, and I know a few of you readers actually read that one. I know because you told me. Anywho’s . . . the band has posted a video for the lead track off of The Passing album called “Cold.” I normally couldn’t give a shit about videos, but in this case, there was something about seeing these guys hammer out this amazing tune. The video actually captures the essence of the song in excruciatingly perfect detail. Grab a blanket and watch the video. Me likey a lot.

In tour rumors, two Swedish bands have either hit the road or returned from the road. The tripped out sounds of Dead Man will be hitting U.S. soil in February and concentrating on the states of the East Coast. I probably should be careful to mention this, otherwise Racer may book a midnight flight to catch the entire leg of the tour. So, Dead Man . . . for the sake of our yearly budget, please schedule a show or two on the West Coast. Thanks. The other group of Swedes in the rumor mill are prog-meisters, Trettioariga Kriget. They’ve just returned from they’re very first sojourn to Japan in support of their first double live CD set, War Years. I guess it wasn’t so much of a tour as it was a trip to Japan to play a couple of gigs and then come back to Sweden. I guess you could liken it to a vacation where the entire band traveled together and then played their music to a group of fans. I gotta’ talk to my travel agent about a vacation like that. Sound like fun!

Well friends, that pretty much sums up what I’ve heard while I had my ear pressed against the information super highway. It sounds like 2009 will be another incredible year of equally incredible music. All the stuff I passed info on is due for release in the first quarter alone! Yes . . . I know I’m asking a lot of you to do math on the day we all traditionally get so inebriated that we can’t even remember our own names, but work with me here. It’s simple math. Four quarters make one whole. That means, we have three more quarters of the year with the expectation of great music! Doesn’t that excite you? It does me. And, I’m sure Racer is wiping the drool from his face at the realization of what stands before us. Ain’t life grand? Be safe tonight, my friends. Please drink responsibly. We want y’all to come back and be a part of the family next year! Happy New Year!


Anonymous said…
I know you're addicted to East of the Wall but do are you familiar with the other two bands on the split? The sheer awesomeness of all three has me very excited for that one.
Chris - I haven't heard either of these other bands, but I'm looking forward to knowing more about them and shedding some, apparently, much needed light on them!

Happy New Year!

Jingles said…
The bands names you shared in the post are new for me but some of them are my favorites. Susperia is good and I watched it many times.
Thanks for coming on board Jingles. Hopefully we'll find lots more new bands for you.