May 092011

It’s safe (and easy) to say that everyone who has listened to Arch Enemy falls into one of three camps: (1) you like everything the band does; (2) you like nothing the band does; (3) you liked the earlier albums, but have been meh about the more recent ones. We will soon have a new Arch Enemy release from Century Media. Khaos Legions will debut on May 30 in Europe and June 7 in North America. So far, two songs have been made publicly available.

The first — “Yesterday Is Dead and Gone” — was released as a video and premiered by Guitar World.  We wrote about that one here. The second, “Blood-Stained Cross”, has been exclusively streaming at MetalSucks since last Friday. I finally listened to that track and felt it was worth a post, because although many of you are also MetalSucks readers, I know some of you aren’t.

MetalSucks introduced the song by proclaiming that Khaos Legions “may very well be the legendary melodeath outfit’s finest hour since 2001′s Wages of Sin.” I certainly can’t agree or disagree with that comment yet since I’ve only heard two songs, but I will say this: Although I thought “Yesterday Is Dead and Gone” was okay (and only okay), “Blood-Stained Cross” is wonderful, and if the rest of the album is in league with it, I’l be agreeing with that MetalSucks assessment.

The song has a dark, vicious edge that does indeed recall Wages of Sin, with a great melodic guitar lead — and Angela Gossow’s vocals on this song may be the best effort from her I think I’ve yet heard. Yes, it’s still a very melodic song, but it’s also morose and seething and musically varied. I’m liking it a lot. If you’re in Category (1) or (3), as described above, you should definitely go to MetalSucks today (using this link) and listen to “Blood-Stained Cross.”

Apr 182011

Fans of Arch Enemy get a treat today — the band has debuted the first official video for their new album, Khaos Legions, which will be released by Century Media on June 7.

The video is for a song called “Yesterday Is Dead and Gone”, and for now it’s being streamed exclusively in the U.S. at Guitar World (at this location). If you live outside the U.S., you may not be able to view it there — and if not, the band’s press release says you should visit the world map at this link to find out where you can see it.

If you’re a fan of Arch Enemy (as we are), you’ll like this song. If not, it won’t change your mind, because it sounds like . . . Arch Enemy. The video integrates shots of the band playing the song with shots of masked protestors running, waving flags, and protesting . . . something.

That is all.

Mar 072011

Arch Enemy revealed the cover art for their next studio release, Khaos Legions. I thought it was so damned cool that I had to stick it up here for all to see.

The artist is Brent Elliott White, who has done covers for the likes of Megadeth and Death Angel, and many others.

The album is due in the late spring or early summer on Century Media and will mark the band’s return to new original songs after the re-recordings album, The Root of All Evil (2009) and the live DVD/CD they released in 2008, Tyrants of the Rising Sun.

Wonder if they’ll perform wearing those masks now? We’d still be able to recognize Angela, don’t you think?

Jan 182011

Yeah, I know I’m taxing your attention span with our third post of the day, but I continue to see eye-catching items and just can’t resist. But I will keep this one short and sweet. It’s about breaking news from three of our favorite bands.


You’re looking at Item One: The just-released cover art for Amon Amarth‘s new album, Surtur Rising. Talk about a fucking metal album cover. The art is by Tom Thiel. The album will be released in North America on March 29, 2011 via Metal Blade Records.

The track listing for the album is out, too, and includes such juicy titles as “Destroyer of the Universe”, “Live Without Regrets”, “For Victory Or Death”, and my favorite: “A Beast Am I”. I’m expecting epic levels of epicness.

Did you know that Surtur was (is?) the leader of the fire giants of Muspelheim (“flame land”) and the oldest being in the nine worlds of Norse mythology? Oh, fuck me, sorry about that; I said I would keep this short. On to the next item (after the jump). Continue reading »

Jan 072011

Ladies and gentlemen, this is the debut of a new column which Islander has kindly allowed me to write and display here at NoCleanSinging.

Each week (ok, whenever I get round to it, they may not be weekly – or they may be more frequent, we’ll see) I’m going to be providing an introduction, a retrospective, or simply a re-consideration of  a band which I feel merits the treatment. Certain bands will be more well known than others, and primarily these bands will be part of THE SYNN REPORT simply because I feel that with all the bullshit media hype in the world, the band in question has been perhaps judged unfairly due to the influence of matters non-musical. Certain bands, however, you may not have heard of before at all, as although I do not consider myself a paragon of underground taste, there is only so much time each of us can devote to finding new music and really exploring it. Hopefully this column will help a little!

Each column will deal with a single musical entity, considering their works and progression in turn. Certain columns will be dedicated perhaps simply to eras in a band’s career and progression, considering and evaluating changes in style and direction with the benefit of hindsight and (hopefully) critical objectivity. Although that probably won’t last very long!

Anyway, for my first column I would like to introduce you to the Greek band ASTARTE (more after the jump, including sample songs from the band’s discography . . .) Continue reading »

Jan 012011

HAPPY NEW YEAR!  Did you see what we did?  We had to change the logo for this edition of SICKNESS.  Because 2010 is behind us, and the new year lies ahead.

We spent the last 30 days, as we’ve been doing for the last year, collecting news blurbs and press releases about forthcoming new albums from bands we know and like, or from bands that look interesting, even though we don’t know them yet. And in this post, we’ve cut and pasted the announcements and compiled them in alphabetical order.

All of our previous monthly updates can be found via the “Forthcoming Albums” category link on the right side of our pages, and because we’re not keeping a cumulative list, you might want to check the last couple months of these posts if you want to get a full picture of what’s coming. The list that follows, in alphabetical order, are albums we didn’t know about at the time of our last installment when November ended, or updated info about albums we’d previously heard were on the way. And be forewarned: This is a really long list. There’s a massive slag of new metal coming our way, and man, does it look hot.

So, without further ado, let’s get started. See if there’s anything on the list that makes you moist, or tumescent, or just generally slobbery.

ABORTED: “Good news is that we are starting pre-productions for our upcoming record on January 4th. This means we will demo all the songs for the record, make sure everything sounds good and make the necessary adjustments to make sure they are all more lethal than a chainsaw in Mr. Leatherface’s hands. We’re all very excited about the material thus far and can’t wait to get this over with and proceed to the actual recordings later this year. Expect a fall 2011 release through our culprates in mayhem Century Media.”

AGNOSTIC FRONT: “The Godfathers of New York Hardcore, Agnostic Front, have just finished recording their highly anticipated follow up to their 2007 release, Warriors. The yet to be titled album features 13 new powerful and anthemic songs laid down by Erik Rutan (Madball, Goatwhore, Cannibal Corpse) at his Mana Recording Studio in Tampa, FL under the watchful guide of producer Freddy Cricien of Madball. The record was mastered by Alan Douches (Nile, Mastodon) and will be released in Europe of March 4, 2011 and in North America on March 22, 2011.”

(the list continues after the jump . . .)

Continue reading »

Oct 242010

We just discovered video of Arch Enemy‘s performance on Oct 22 at The Waerdse Tempel in Heerhugowaard, The Netherlands. We had to watch those clips, because Arch Enemy is an NCS favorite and because the band’s live performances in Seattle have been some of the best shows we’ve ever seen.

These are fan-filmed clips, but the video quality is very high and the audio quality is above-average, too. So, they’re worth sharing with you. Besides, featuring Arch Enemy is in keeping with the female-centric nature of our previous post today. As far as we know, Angela Gossow doesn’t swallow swords (or running jackhammers) and hasn’t married herself, but man, can she command a stage.

Here’s the clip of Arch Enemy performing “Ravenous”, which is just a cool fucking song to begin with.

(more clips after the jump . . .)

Continue reading »

Jul 042010

Fair warning: This will be one extended session of spittle-flecked frothing at the mouth, because we haven’t been this blown away since stumbling into a full-fledged Seattle windstorm last winter. So get the safety glasses on and strap on sanitary masks if you got ’em.

The subject of our enthusiasm is Nothnegal. They’re a band from The Republic of the Maldives that now includes two non-Maldivian heavyweights — drummer Kevin Talley from Dååth and keyboardist Marco Sneck from those Finnish swamplords Kalmah. They’ve got a four-song EP to their credit called Antidote of Realism and they’ve just signed with Season of Mist for the release of their debut album early next year.

Oh yeah, they’re also playing with Arch Enemy this month and touring Europe in the fall with the likes of Rotting Christ, Samael, and Finntroll.

And we’d wager that most of you have never heard of them. Until earlier this week, we hadn’t either. But this band shows all the seismic signs of an impending Vesuvius-sized eruption onto the scene — and based on the band’s output to date, it would be well-deserved.

If you like technically immaculate, headbangingly compulsive, Scandinavian-style melodic death metal played at autobahn speed, stay with us after the jump. Among other things, we’ll stream all four tracks from that EP and we’ll show you how to download a cut from Nothnegal’s forthcoming debut album. Continue reading »

Feb 082010

Arch Enemy comes to town and your NCS Authors turn into moths drawn to a candle flame.

On February 6, 2010, the TYRANTS OF EVIL tour stopped at The Showbox in Seattle and two of us plus our entourage were there to take in the tyranny of evility. We file this report (along with a big batch of our regrettably amateurish photo images at the end of the post).


This band first drew our attention through a YouTube video of their transplant-from-England vocalist Chris Clancy singing an operatic aria called “Nessum Dorma.” So, okay, the dude’s got some pipes. But does he belong in a metal band, and is the band itself worth a damn? Someone thinks so, because they’re signed to Roadrunner Records, they’ve got a debut album coming out on February 23, they’re touring with Arch Enemy, and they clearly had a bunch of appreciative fans in the Showbox audience.

But this is power metal, with mostly clean singing, and you know that’s not our thing (see the name of this site). Anything we might say would come off as a put-down, but that wouldn’t be our intent. We’re just not into this kind of metal. So, we’ll pass on the review and move to the next band . . . . (after the jump) Continue reading »

Jan 262010


See those pictures above? In descending order, that’s Arch Enemy, Behemoth, Dragonforce, Dez Fafara, Carnifex, Axl Rose, and the late great Dimebag, all flipping the bird. This is a pretty random selection. If we’d had more time, we could have made this photo gallery a lot longer. For every metal band you’ve got on your personal music player, odds are that somewhere there’s a photo of them giving the finger.

Who are they flipping off? Is it the photographer? Is it you, their adoring fans? Is it the world in general? And why are they doing this?  (more after the jump . . .) Continue reading »