The constantly evolving Heavy Metal scene in Melbourne, Australia just seems to keep on giving, and it seems like it’s every other week these days where another band will crop up and release something worthy of the world stage. Although the seeds for DIREBLAZE were sown back in 2009 where they began life as a SLAYER tribute band, before quickly realizing they had the ability and will to create original music, and though they have been a pretty regular feature in the local live scene for a few years now, 2015 sees the release of their debut self-titled album.
Since the release of a handful of demos in 2003, Australian Black Metallers DROWNING THE LIGHT have been flying the CVLT flag and making huge waves throughout the underground scene across the globe. As well as becoming one of the most respected bands in the genre, they have also been one of the busiest with a discography of full albums, E.P’s, demos, cassettes, compilations and splits that dwarfs most bands twice their age. I will not pretend to have heard them all, though I have heard quite a few.
Before you delve any further into this review, let me say right off the bat that this album isn’t for everyone. Regular readers of MGM will note that the site generally steers away from anything that can be classified in some way as ‘core’, especially when another word is combined with it to create the contentious title of “metalcore”. But due to my overwhelming desire to keep you guys up to date with all of the great things the Australian rock & metal scene is doing these days I am more than happy to go a little out of the boundaries when I feel that something is worthy of a mention.
Over the course of the three albums they have now released, CHAOS DIVINE have been adjusting their musical approach from what began as a pretty typical Melodic Death Metal groove on their debut AVALON, to a more Progressive Metal approach on the 2011 follow-up THE HUMAN CONNECTION, and now with their third release, the crowd-funded COLLIDING SKIES, a sort of Modern Heavy Rock/Prog Rock/Prog Metal hybrid.
It isn’t too common to find a power/folk metal hybrid anymore, but one country that has proven reliable for this style in recent years is Italy. Obviously, the leaders in that field are Elvenking, but over the past few years, up and coming band Vexillum have proven themselves to be quite the force as well. They emerged in 2004 under the name Shadow Vexillum, but never really took off until 2011, when they released their debut The Wandering Notes, which showed a ton of promise.
If you were to catch me by surprise and ask me right now who my vote for new band of the year would be, I would have little or no hesitation in telling you RavenEye. The Milton Keynes based blues rock trio are made up of singer and guitarist Oli Brown, drummer Kev Hickman and bassist and Aussie native Aaron Spiers.
It’s been six years now since Impellitteri released their last album, the critically acclaimed Wicked Maiden. A heck of a long time to wait for any album, but this is Chris Impellitteri folks, a man who defines the word perfection. Since their self titled EP in 1987, their world renowned shredder has been awarded just about every accolade from numerous guitar magazines, including fastest guitar player in the world.
‘Bad Touch’ are here with a brand new original material debut album entitled ‘Half Way Home’. Forming five years ago this young Rock band have had many live experiences playing huge festivals such as Download, Steelhouse, legends of Rock and 2012’s Hard Rock hell. In this short period of time the band has achieved all of this as well as now supporting Rock Band ‘The Answer’ on their UK tour 2015. Now getting ready to release their debut album late April this year, I have been fortunate enough to get my hands on it early.
The fine purveyors of sleaze rock are back with their tenth studio album. And the good news, the Gothenburg boys, now in their 21st year of existence, are as mean and salacious as always. The madness opens with the bluntly titled Don’t Mean Shit, a demonic cocktail of raw power and fearsome attitude. Jocke Berg’s robust vocals deliver with every note on a song laced with anger.