Blog Archives

Retro Roundtable Review: At the Edge of Time by Blind Guardian

MI0003036053Label: Nuclear Blast

Release Date: July 30th, 2010

Songs: 10

Genre: Symphonic Power Metal

Studio Albums: 9 other ones

Location: Germany

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Retro Round Table Review: Imaginations from the Other Side by Blind Guardian

imaginations_from_the_other_sideAlbum Review: Blind Guardian – Imaginations From The Other Side

Label: Virgin

Release Date: April 5th, 1995

Songs: 12

Length: 1 hour 8 minutes

Genre: Power Metal

Studio Albums: 9 plus 1 compilation album

Location: Krefeld, Germany

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Retro Roundtable Review: Adrenaline by Deftones

Adrenaline-Cover-300x300Label: Maverick

Release Date: October 1995

Songs: 11

Length: 48 minutes

Genre: Nu Metal

Studio Albums: This was their first of seven studio albums

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Full Album Streams: Infestissumam by Ghost

ghost-infestissumam-1000x515The fine folks over at Pitchfork made my day yesterday with an advance stream of the new Ghost album Infestissumam.  It is one of my most highly anticipated records of the year after their debut album Opus Eponymous straight up blew me away with its retro ’70s grooves and delightfully (and hilariously overboard) Satanic themes and a couple years after its release still gets a lot of spins on my stereo/Ipod.  The new album is another win in the books for the Swedish Satinists and is packed with the same stellar songwriting and possessing grooves and melodies as their first album.  I wouldn’t go as far as to say it trumps the debut, but it resides on the same plane and shows a lot of growth in the band.  So far my favorite track is a groovy as sin tune called “Jigolo Har Megiddo” that is sure to get any demon loving booty shaking.  Full review will certainly pop up here in the near future, but until then, just know you have an album to get hyped about for next week and you should buy it.  Don’t want to take my word for it, listen for yourself here.  I also really enjoy the fact that Pitchfork included all of the album artwork and lyrics in the stream, nice little bonus.  And if you have a bit of trouble finding the play button, hover your mouse over the bottom of the page and it will pop up (took me a hot second to figure that out 😉 ).  Enjoy and let us know what you think!  Peace Love and Metal!!!!

Game Review: Primordia


Can the maker repair what he makes?

-Roy Batty

By now, video games have reached a point where questioning religion, society, war, and other difficult and taboo subject matter have found their way into the subject matter.  Dig deep into the lore of games like Portal 2, Bioshock, Limbo, El Shaddai, Deus Ex, Spec Ops: The Line, Metal Gear Solid, etc. and you will find deep and introspective ‘mature’ subject matter.  I applaud games like this for giving the medium a much need push forward, and when a game comes out that tackles these type of themes I make it a point to play it.  When I first caught wind of Primordia through the Steam Greenlight feature the concept of a post-apocalyptic world where man had become extinct and robots and androids lived on to create their own society where some had began to worship their makers, man, had really piqued my attention.  Then quickly seeing it was being co-produced by one of my favorite adventure game publishers, Wadjet Eye (Gemini Rue, The Blackwell Series, Resonance), and newcomers Wormwood Studios, I knew I had to get my hands on this game.  Did Wadjet continue their amazing track record, are Wormwood Studios a worthy new dev. team, did Primordia live up to my lofty expectation of delivering quality gameplay as well as a narrative that would tickle my brain?  Read on. (note: I’m trying a different style to my game reviews and am now going to add a score at the end :gasp!:, hope you dig it)

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Album Review: Living With the Ancients by Blood Ceremony

For me, the purchase of this record came right out of left field.  I was doing some Youtube surfing and stumbled upon a track of theirs off their previous effort and within 10 seconds I was completely hooked and knew I had to have a record by Blood Ceremony as soon as possible.  The blend of doom-y Sabbath-ian riffs and rhythms, female vocals that are like a mix of Grace Slick (Jefferson Airplane) and Ozzy’s Black Sabbath days lulled me in, and then a heavy kick of jazz flute ala Jethro Tull immediately appeased the side of me that loves great melody and non-standard instruments in metal.  Luckily that same evening I was browsing the local record store and lo and behold their latest release, Living With the Ancients, was sitting there just waiting for me to pick it up, which I did post-haste.  When I got home and popped the record in I had some very high expectations based off what I heard from the couple of songs I heard on Youtube, and Living With the Ancients delivered flawlessly and lived up to that huge hype I built up in my head in such a short period of time.

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Monday Metal Madness- Modern Retro Video Battle

Last weeks poll revealed that fellow Dream Theater fans are quite accepting of Mike Mangini as he took the vast majority of the vote!!!

It’s always cool when a band not only pays homage to yesteryear with their sound, but also does it visually.  This week The Sword and their performance piece for “How Heavy This Axe”, complete with Orange Amps and bell-bottoms, does battle with Mastodon and their Deluxx-o-Vision sci-fi epic “Sleeping Giant”(pause at 0:44, Is that Lars Ulrich?!).  Enjoy!! Peace Love and Metal!!!

Album Review-Ghost-Opus Eponymous

   In recent years retro bands have been popping up quite a bit, mainly in the thrash metal and 70’s prog department.  I’ve asked myself, “with all this retro going on, why isn’t anyone going back to the era godfathers of metal, Black Sabbath, Blue Cheer, The Doors, ect.?”  Well one could argue that bands like St. Vitus and some other doomy and sludgy stoner metal bands do so, but none of them, while really good in their own right, really capture the real feel that Black Sabbath and Co. had.  Blame it on modern production, being a bit too heavy, or lack of being melodic or catchy, none could really pull it off.  Sweden’s Ghost have come to put an end to all that and they succeed with flying colors on their debut album Opus Eponymous.  And they’re pretty big fans of Satan.

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Song of the Week-Ritual

Remember a time when everyone’s parents accused metal of being nothing more than Satan worship and its fans took part in cult rituals and made sacrifices(Viva Memphis Three).  Let’s be happy that Ghost wasn’t around during those times because while parents and politicians were out scrutinizing bands like Black Sabbath and Twisted Sister for lyrics that encouraged Satanism and sacrifice, Ghost sings about those themes right up front point-blank.  While it may be a gimmick, it’s a gimmick that they use to perfection as they harken back to the sound of Black Sabbath and Blue Cheer and create retro awesomeness.

Here is the song “Ritual” off their debut release Opus Eponymous.  Never did I think that the lines “The chapel of ritual, smells of dead human sacrifices, from the altar bed, on this night of ritual, invoking our master, to procreate the unholy bastard” would ever be so damn fun and catchy.  Boy, moms and politicians in the 70’s and 80’s would have had tons of fun with this one.  Check it out!! The album is awesome too, maybe I’ll do a review of it later today or tomorrow.  Peace Love and Metal!!!!

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Music Video Mania-Modern Retro Videos

When watching movies I’ve been caught often saying “they don’t make ’em like they used to”, especially if I’m going back and watching a classic such as Ghostbusters, The Dark Crystal(or any Jim Henson movie for that matter), or Conan the Barbarian.  There was something special about those films that gave a warm human touch to them, probably the fact that human hands had touched every aspect of the creation.  I’m not saying that modern movies suck, in fact I enjoy them quite a bit, but you have to admit that some of the movie magic is gone.  The same could be said about music videos.  Back then(err, the 80’s and 90’s) making a music video was usually on a tight budget and people didn’t have access to inexpensive HD video camera or video editing software, but they got by using some creativity and imagination.

Here are some modern(post 2000’s) metal music videos that whether using modern technology or not give a shout out to an age past by incorporating themes, moods, colors, and techniques used in movies and music videos.  Enjoy!! And if you know of any modern retro metal videos that aren’t listed here I’d love to know about it down in the comments!!  Peace Love and Metal!!!!

Opeth-The Devils Orchard

Just like Opeth‘s latest album is a throwback to the sounds of the 70’s it would seem logical that their latest music video would do the same.  It has that 70’s psychedelic exploitation movie style and I love the soft colors throughout the video.  So, who else thought of The Seventh Seal(I think the chess board was a direct nod to that film, especially since it’s a Swedish-made movie and Opeth are Swedish) and Hitchcock, especially Vertigo?

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