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Music Review: The Last Stand’s ‘This Is Real’
Dr. Zaius   |  @   |  

The Last Stand This Is Real Header

The Last Stand
This Is Real
CD | MP3
Label: Irish Voodoo Records
Release Date: June 9th, 2017

If you’re a fan of New York Hardcore, then you have probably heard the music of The Last Stand before now, perhaps without even realizing. Each of the members has been around the hardcore scene making headbanging music for well over 20 years. Lead singer Michael Scondotto was vocalist for Inhuman, and bassist Dion De Nardo, guitarist Stephen Della Croce and drummer Jimmy McCormack were all members of Shutdown. The Last Stand got together in 2010 and released their self titled record in 2011. This past Friday, June 9th, they released their latest record, This Is Real on Irish Voodoo Records on vinyl and CD. The album features 4 original songs as well as a couple of covers, and provides all the face smashing power one would expect from the genre.

More below.

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Concert Review: Metallica – ‘Hardwired… To Self-Destruct’ Tour At MetLife Stadium, New Jersey
Dr. Zaius   |  @   |  

Metallica Hardwired...To Self Destruct Album Art

17 years ago, in the summer of 2000, I arrived at a melting hot Giants Stadium parking lot at noon for a day-long festival to metal, Tattoo the Earth. The concert would culminate with me seeing my all-time favorite band for the very first time, Metallica. My friends and I never sat down, sang every lyric, and I even teared up during the firework show that opened “One.” Now 35 years old, I arrived with my wife to the new Giants stadium, MetLife Stadium, in East Rutherford, New Jersey to see Metallica for the 8th time. And as they’ve done every time, Metallica, the greatest metal band of all time, did not disappoint.

More below.

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Blu-ray Review: Fates Warning ‘Awaken the Guardian Live’
Empress Eve   |  @   |  

Fates Warning Awaken the Guardian Live banner

Fates Warning
Awaken the Guardian Live
Blu-ray | 2-CD/1-DVD | Vinyl
Label: Metal Blade Records
Release date: April 28, 2017

In 1986, progressive metal outfit Fates Warning released their Awaken the Guardian album up against such seminal works as Metallica’s Master Of Puppets, Slayer’s Reign In Blood, and Megadeth’s Peace Sells… But Who’s Buying?. With competition like that, it’s no wonder that the band’s third effort didn’t skyrocket to the top of the metal world, even though it deserved to, as Awaken the Guardian is a masterpiece, plain and simple.

The album marked the Connecticut band’s final release with original singer John Arch before continuing till today with frontman Ray Adler. But last year, for the 30th anniversary of Awaken the Guardian, guitarist, songwriter, and mastermind Jim Matheos reassembled the album’s line-up to play two festival shows. Now, Metal Blade Records has released the performances on DVD and Blu-ray as Awaken the Guardian Live, and if you’re a fan of this album and line-up, then this release is going to blow you away.

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Disney In Depth: Music Review: Beauty and The Beast (2017)
Brett Nachman   |  @   |  

Disney In Depth Banner

The tale as old as time is timeless, and so is its music. With the recent release of Disney’s smash success Beauty and the Beast, let’s unpack the music box that is the film’s soundtrack. With all of the original tunes from the 1991 film, as well as some new additions, this new version blends classic and contemporary almost seamlessly, with a few exceptions.

Here is my review of the soundtrack for the 2017 version of Beauty and the Beast.

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Album Review: Nathan Gray Collective “Until The Darkness Takes Us”
Ides Bergen   |  @   |  

Nathan Gray Collective Until The Darkness Takes Us Album Cover

Nathan Gray Collective
Until The Darkness Takes Us
Label: Tongues Of Fire
Release date: March 3, 2017

Nathan Gray wants you to live your life to the fullest. The 44-year-old singer, best known for his work with the bands Boysetsfire and I Am Heresy, is also a reverend and active member in The Church of Satan. One of the main, underlying philosophies of the church is that all we have is the here and now. There is no afterlife, so it is the duty of each each individual to make the most of their time in this world. That means indulging in as many self-gratifying “sins” as one wishes so long as you are not causing harm to other innocent parties. Life and pleasure are to be celebrated, not squandered or stifled. Death and creation are the great motivators.

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Album Review: Kreator ‘Gods Of Violence’
Ides Bergen   |  @   |  

Creator Gods of Violence Album Cover

Kreator
Gods of Violence
CD | MP3
Label: Nuclear Blast
Release Date: January 27, 2017

Teutonic thrash lords Kreator have just unleashed their fourteenth studio album, Gods of Violence. The record is out now worldwide via the Nuclear Blast label and marks the German legends’ first studio effort in five years. That’s the longest period that Kreator have ever taken between albums in their 30-year career. So, was it worth the wait?

In short, yes! Not only is Kreator at the top of their game musically, but Gods of Violence may just be their most cohesive effort to date. It’s truly amazing when any band has such longevity, but to continue raising the bar when many of your contemporaries have long since fallen out is an extreme rarity.

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Metallica ‘Hardwired…To Self-Destruct’ Album and Video Review
Ides Bergen   |  @   |  

Metallica Hardwired...To Self Destruct Album Art

In a move unprecedented in the metal world, thrash titan Metallica has just released, in 2-hour intervals, videos for all 13 tracks from their highly anticipated tenth studio album Hardwired…To Self-Destruct, which will be available worldwide tomorrow, November 18, 2016 via the band’s own Blackened Recordings label.

The release will be the first double album of original material in the band’s history. Let’s take a look at each song and its respective video per the sequence in which they appear on the album, shall we?

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Album Review: National Lampoon Presents: Are There Any Triggers Here Tonight?
BAADASSSSS!   |  

National Lampoon Presents Are There Any Triggers Here Tonight?

Are There Any Triggers Here Tonight?
iTunes | CD Baby
The Final Edition | NL
Release Date: September 9, 2016

National Lampoon has certainly seen better days; a few decades before they became a brand synonymous with puerile, sophomoric frat boy humor and cheap direct-to-video “comedies,” the Lampoon was a brain trust of America’s boldest and most fearless young satirists who used their incisive, inventive wit to offend, compel, and amuse and who would lay the foundation for some of the great works of modern comedy, from the small screen success of Saturday Night Live to the celluloid classics Caddyshack, Ghostbusters, and This is Spinal Tap.

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Mommy Goes Back To Metal: A Surly Middle-Aged Woman’s Review Of Ozzfest/Knotfest 2016
Marissa Bergen   |  

Ozzfest Knotfest 2016 banner

Don’t ask me why I decided to go to Ozzfest/Knotfest this year. Normally an annual rite of passage for my husband and our 13-year-old son, I somehow got it in my head that it would be a fun thing for me and my 9-year-old daughter to tag along this year. Perhaps it is all part of my middle-aged crisis that is also attempting to convince me that I am a somewhat relevant rock n’ roll star who is destined for success in my family band (#thecheesebergens), but anyway…

I was approaching the festival in what already looked like miserable conditions as hot winds kicked up dust storms all over the San Manuel Amphitheater in San Bernardino, CA. Early thoughts on the parking lot situation: Why do schlubby guys feel like it’s necessary to take off their shirts and stand in the beds of their pickup trucks? And why are there so many more of them taking off their shirts than the ones who actually look good without shirts? But there were plenty of those too…shout out to the twin shirtless heavy metal cowboys with man buns (yes, you are reading that correctly!).

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Album Review: Killswitch Engage “Incarnate”
Ides Bergen   |  @   |  

Killswitch Engage Incarnate

Killswitch Engage
Incarnate
CD | MP3
Label: Roadrunner Records
Release date: March 11, 2016

Killswith Engage‘s last album, Disarm The Descent, was a ripping return to form for a band that many had written off as being past their prime. The return of original vocalist Jesse Leach after a nine-year absence was just the injection of new lifeblood that the Massachusetts metalcore pioneers had been in desperate need of. Disarm The Descent was an absolute master class in modern metal that kicked the listener’s ass up one side and down the other. I gave the album a perfect 10 out of 10 and would ultimately go on to name it my favorite album of the year for 2013. The lead single “In Due Time” earned Killswitch a Grammy nomination for “Best Hard Rock or Metal Performance.”

Now, after three years KSE is back with their seventh studio album Incarnate. The question on everyone’s mind is, “How do you follow up a nearly perfect record?” The answer… by somehow ramping up the quality of songwriting and a heavier than ever delivery!

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