May 092010

Arma Gathas is a riff machine. Seriously, we’ve seen it. It’s got these big slots where you feed in raw materials — guitar strings, fret boards, rusty nails, the severed claws of Black Forest wolves, barbed wire, well-oiled jackhammers, a hive of hornets that’s just been lit on fire, a gassed-up chainsaw — and on the other end are these giant fucking speakers, out of which come one blistering riff after another.

Actually, we saw the Arma Gathas riff machine in a dream. But we still think it was real, because we’ve got confirming evidence: the band’s debut album on Metal Blade, Dead To This World.

The members of Arma Gathas have honed their craft with some bands you’ve probably heard of. Guitarist and riff-genius-in-residence, Simon Fuellemann, was also a founding member of Cataract (among others). Vocalist Ché Snelting used to front Born From Pain. Lead guitarist Marc Niedersberg played with Machinemade God and Cornelius. And the resume of drummer Max van Winkelhof includes Disloyal.

You could draw a few correct inferences about the sound of Arma Gathas from the lineage of its members, but that wouldn’t give you the whole picture. To fill out those images of metal-infused hardcore, you’d need to sketch in some jolting guitar solos, some splashes of thrash and punk, a hailstorm of power grooves, some moody instrumentals, and even passages of melodic death metal.  (more after the jump . . .) Continue reading »

Feb 232010

We’re now almost two months into 2010, and it’s already time for our second update to the list of forthcoming new albums we posted on January 1.  (See the original list here and the first update here.) Below is a list of still more projected new releases that we didn’t know about on January 1 or at the time of our last update about a month ago — and there’s a lot of them.

Once again, we’ve cobbled together news blurbs about bands whose past work we’ve liked, or who look interesting for other reasons. Needless to say (but we’ll say it anyway), these are bands that mostly fit the profile of music we cover on this site.

So, in alphabetical order, here’s our list of cut-and-pasted blurbs from various sources over the last month about forthcoming new releases:

1349: “Prosthetic Records will release the brand new album from Norwegian black metal legends 1349 in North America via an agreement with Indie Recordings. The new CD, which promises ‘a return to the band’s more traditional, raw-yet-technical black metal sound,’ is due on April 13. In support of the yet-to-be-titled record, 1349 will embark on a North American tour in April and May as the support act for CANNIBAL CORPSE (alongside SKELETONWITCH and LECHEROUS NOCTURNE).”

ABACABB: “ABACABB are currently out on the road headlining the Hot Dice On Black Ice Tour featuring Upon A Burning Body!. The tour just hit Texas and will be in California this weekend. Following the tour ABACABB will enter the studio with producer Will Putney at Machine Shop in New Jersey and will have a new album to be released sometime this summer.”

AEON: “Swedish death metallers AEON have set Path Of Fire as the title of their third album, due later in the year via Metal Blade Records. The CD was recorded in September 2009 at Empire Studio in Östersund, Sweden and was mixed the following month at Mana Recording Studios in St, Petersburg, Florida by Erik Rutan (HATE ETERNAL, MORBID ANGEL, CANNIBAL CORPSE). The mastering was handled by Alan Douches at West West Side Music (CONVERGE, HATEBREED, THE DILLINGER ESCAPE PLAN) in New Windsor, New York.”

AMORPHIS: “AMORPHIS will release its first-ever live DVD, Forging The Land Of Thousand Lakes, in early June via Nuclear Blast, in time for the band’s 20th anniversary. The filming took place on November 20, 2009 at Club Teatria in Oulu, Finland, where AMORPHIS was supported by STRATOVARIUS and BEFORE THE DAWN. In addition to the full-length live show, the anniversary DVD will include plenty of bonus material documenting the band’s impressive career.”   (much more after the jump . . . ) Continue reading »