Author Archives: WarpRider

Album Review: Coal Chamber – Rivals


585_CoalChamberAlbum:  Rivals

Release Date:  19 May 2015

Label:  Napalm

Songs:  13

Length:  42 Minutes

Genre:  Nu Metal

Previous Studio Albums:  Coal Chamber (1997); Chamber Music (1999); Dark Days (2002)

Location:  California, U.S.

I never thought I would see another reboot of Coal Chamber in any way, shape, or form especially after the way things fell apart over a decade ago.  But, as quickly as Dez’s DevilDriver crumbled and went on hiatus, Coal Chamber resurfaced, got most of the original (or long-time) band members together, and have a new album out now.  Dez surely didn’t waste much time.  Those Coal Chamber reunion shows in Australia obviously sparked something.  Anyway, Rivals is Coal Chamber’s 4th studio album and surprisingly picks things up where they left off.  I say surprisingly because this album sounds like Coal Chamber never broke up at all.  Read the rest of this entry

A Few Things to Check Out…


As summer looms, it must be a good time to release metal because it seems to be coming at us from all angles.  Here is another group of music files, videos, and clips to take a listen to. This is a diverse grouping, so be prepared.

Pyramaze is about to release Disciples of the Sun on May 22nd.  The title track below is their first video.  They fall under the umbrella of melodic metal, but don’t let labels steer you in any particular direction. The music should do the talking.

   Read the rest of this entry

Album Review: Six Feet Under – Crypt of the Devil


495291Album:  Crypt of the Devil

Release Date:  5 May 2015

Label:  Metal Blade

Songs:  10

Length:  37 Minutes

Previous Albums:  Haunted (1995); Warpath (1997); Maximum Violence (1999); True Carnage (2001); Bringer of Blood (2003); 13 (2005); Commandment (2007); Death Rituals (2008); Undead (2012); Unborn (2013).

Genre:  Death Metal

Location:  Florida, United States

Six Feet Under is back with another dose of groove-laden death metal. The only problem the groove part.  The classic rhythm that laid the foundation for most of the eleven Six Feet Under albums simply doesn’t exist on Crypt of the Devil.  Instead, it has been mostly replaced with blast beats, tighter riffs, and abrupt tempo changes.  On paper, that really doesn’t sound like a problem does it?  For some reason it doesn’t work as well as I think they might have planned.  There is either something missing from the recipe or there is too much of something that spoiled the end result.  Let’s figure this out…  Read the rest of this entry

A Few Things to Check Out…


I wish we had time to talk about every band/artist that gets sent to us.  Unfortunately, time is not always on our side despite our finest efforts.  But, we do our best to spread the word because no one should be deprived of metal in whatever metal subgenre it comes in.  Here are a few bands we checked out that may or may not find a home in your music library someday.

Have you ever thought about what Maroon 5 would sound like with growling vocals?  Neither have I.  Honestly, I never knew such a thing existed.  Personally, I can’t really stand Maroon 5, but hearing someone else metalize it puts a new spin on it.  The Persevering Promise currently has their debut album out called An Illusion in Shambles.  If you are into genre labels, they are considered post-hardcore, but it would be hard to tell from the cover song, so I included another song from their album.

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Xbox: Games With Gold & Deals With Gold


xbox-one-featured-imageIt’s time to discuss May’s free games for Xbox Gold members.  Keeping in mind, it cost about $60 a year to be a member, the games they have been giving away this year are worth far more than that…but, you have to like them or want to play them to make it worth your time.  April’s roundup was quite nice, featuring a bunch of free games.  May can be considered a little on the light side comparatively speaking since there are only four games including one from April that is still on the list.  But, when given free stuff can you really complain?

Here is the lineup for the Xbox One:

Castle Storm Definitive Edition.  Available all month.

Pool Nation FX.  Available all month.

  Read the rest of this entry

Show Review: Opeth in Tokyo 30 April 15: The Full Report


IMG_0582If you have been following A Metal State of Mind, you may have noticed that Opeth gets mentioned quite a bit for one reason or another.  I guess you could say, as a whole, we like them here.  Just putting the bias up front.  This time it’s yet another show review; my first from the island nation of Japan.  The Roppongi district of Tokyo was the setting for the show; my third time seeing Opeth and my first ever concert that actually ended at a very reasonable time.  In short, it was a great night for many reasons and here is a rundown of the evening.

First, I will say that the cost of a show in Japan is more than I have ever paid to see one band.  As a result I will have to pick and choose my future shows carefully.  ¥7,500 ($62.41, €55.75, kr524.30) seems to be the average price from what I have been seeing lately.  The cost was for a standing ticket.  If I wanted a seat it would have cost ¥2,000 extra.  Seems to me being closer to the action would cost more, but I am sure there is a reason to price tickets that way.  Anyway, throw in train tickets (took about an hour to get there), a shirt for ¥3,500 and it adds up to an expensive night out…for one band.  There was also a pre-show dinner for about ¥2,800.  But, for metalheads it’s always worth it to see a band you love. I don’t have to explain this, you know…

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Album Review: Mellowtoy – Lies


PromoImage

Release Date:  20 Jan 2015

Previous Albums:  This is their fourth album

Length:  42 Minutes

Songs:  12

Genre:  Hard Rock

Label:  Scarlet Records

FFO:  Ill Nino, Five Finger Death Punch, All That Remains, Stone Sour, Gemini Syndrome, Disturbed

Location:  Milan, Italy Read the rest of this entry

Album Review: Nightwish – Endless Forms Most Beautiful


613dW-xBHFL._SY300_Album:  Endless Forms Most Beautiful

Label:  Nuclear Blast

Songs:  22 (deluxe version)

Length:  2 hours; 38 minutes (deluxe version)

Previous Albums:  Angels Fall First (1997); Oceanborn (1998)’ Wishmaster (2000); Century Child (2002); Dark Passion Play (2007); Imaginaerum (2011)

Genre:  Symphonic Metal

Location:  Finland

I had high hopes for a newly invigorated Nightwish.  Not that Anette’s departure was a blessing, I actually liked Anette with Nightwish quite a bit.  Lineup changes happen and sometimes it is unfortunate. But, after hearing Floor’s initial performances with the band on various YouTube clips I maintained the hope that Nightwish would continue to pump out highly fervent symphonic metal to the masses. I read that Floor was with the band during the recording process which was something new for the band.  This led me to believe things would be just different this time around.  Sadly, the only thing that is different that Nightwish acquired a new singer that’s sounds equally as excellent their previous front-ladies, but the passion in their music seems to be largely absent.  Read the rest of this entry

Album Review & Interview: Southern Front – Death Throes


sothern_front_-_death_throesAlbum:  Death Throes

Label:  N/A

Release:  1 Nov 14

Songs:  8

Length:  28 Minutes

Genre:  Thrash/Death

Previous Albums:  Join or Die (2010); Seasons of Hate EP (2012)

FFO:  Lamb of God, Testament, Exodus, Pantera

Location:  Austin, Texas, USA

For those that feel an album must be of a certain length, Southern Front’s Death Throes is probably going to disappoint you before it even begins.  It’s a quick album and you’ll have to get used to it.  Southern Front is not about pumping their albums full of anything irrelevant.  Therefore, it’s quality over quantity on this one.  It’s just metal and quite heavy metal at that.  I’ll admit it even falls a bit short on whether I would call Death Throes an album or an EP, but for eight songs and the punch they pack, it’s an album.  Following up their Seasons of Hate EP, Death Throes is a no frills experienced mixed with growling (Lamb of God-like) vocals, copious double bass drumming, and enough guitar solos that give them a more thrashy edge. Read the rest of this entry

Album Review: Katatonia – Sanctitude (Live)


489616I am not one for live albums anymore.  I used to always buy them because I felt I was enjoying a piece of the band that I did not have regular access to.  The live setting was raw and mostly unedited back then.  It seemed pure and energetic.  Then, bands like Dream Theater and Opeth (to name just two) went and threw a whole bunch of production into their live albums/DVDs and now my bar has grown accustomed to excellent sound.  How can I go back to bootleg-ish production now?  There is one exception to the rule though.  The (sort of) “unplugged” setting is an intimate atmosphere free of distortion and all around craziness.  More importantly, bands have to rehearse quite a bit because the audience will be able to hear every single nuance of the music.  It has to be awesome.  This is where Katatonia’s new live concert, Sanctitude, comes in.  It is (basically) unplugged, crisp, and sensational.  Of course, the production helps.  Read the rest of this entry