When I listened to this album the first time, my first though was, “You have got to be kiddin'? How can a band hope to make it in today's music business with such a singer?”...well, time to check the info, which (literally) reads as follows :
Originally formed in the Crete town of China (situated on the West side of the northern Coast of the Island) during 2007, Playgrounded only stabilized its line-up around lead singer Stavros Markonis, guitarist Michael Kotsirakis, keyboardist/ electronics man Orestis Zafeiriou, bassist Odisseas Zafeiriou and drummer Vasilis Podaras in 2010.
Yet another female fronted metal band I thought. But boy did I make a mistake.
I’d never heard of this US band before, yet this is already their third album, and the second with Sabrina Valentine on vocals. And contrary to many other female fronted bands this lady doesn’t try to mimic an opera singer, but instead sings more in the lower and mid range of the spectrum; yet at the same time being able to reach rather high notes as well.
I recently got a record of the band named Züül, A band with little info to be found about. so for those who missed it, Züül is an American metal band from Illinois. These guys play a mix of heavy metal with hard rock with here and there some pro elements. The sound of this band reminds me of "The Sword".
Bunker 66 hail from Messina, an historical city on Sicily, Italy. The band debuted in 2009 with the grandiose EP Out Of The Bunker, originally self-released in a limited edition, and re-released later on both CD and vinyl. Infernö Interceptörs is the second studio release (there was a live-EP in mean time, which was brought out as part of Fenriz’ Band Of The Week vinyl series) and this eight-tracker is an enormous step forward in comparison to the former record.
Crismon Cult are an Austrian band, that has existed partly for serveral years under the names Stygma IV/ Stigmata and Big Heat. In 2008, Günter Maier (guitars) and Alexander Hilzensauer (bass) have formed the new band and have added new members on vocals (Walter Stüfer) and Peter Bachmayer on drums. In 2009 they released their- debut-album ‘Crimson Cult’. Now they will release their second album ‘Tales Of Doom’ on the Pure Legends Records- label.
Do you know Hatred For Mankind, Dragged Into Sunlight’s debut full length studio record? It was one of my favourite releases from 2008 (the stuff had been re-released in 2010/2011 through their current label, Prosthetic, and was reviewed very positively by colleague Tony, who shared my enthusiasm about this UK-based act; for the review: see the archives section, posted on the very end on October 2010).
I was very, or better: extremely pleased with late 2011’s release On The Coming Of Darkness (review posted November 12th 2011 - see archives section), and luckily this successor goes on in the very same vein, both musically as lyrically (conceptually). On The Dawning Of Light consists of nine tracks with a total running time of forty seven minutes, and still the project is veiled within mystery and unknown identities (for what this might be worth).
To me, Otep has always been quite the mystery. I've always had the hardest time putting this band in one genre. Perhaps that's a good thing. Too many people have been spending too much time labeling bands nowadays. Time to put an end to this. However, not touring Europe for centuries might be another reason for remaining that same enigma. After the release of Hydra, let's hope this last disappointment alters for the better. Back to Otep's new release now, which goes by the liquid name of Hydra.
Formed by Pete Newdeck (drummer at Eden’s Curse) and Ian Nash. After successfully writing an array of hard hitting music, they quickly enlisted the enthusiastic drummer Mark Cross (Firewind, Helloween). Cross was so impressed by the vocal ability of drummer Newdeck, he booked into a studio for the album F.E.A.R.