Blog Archives

Atmospheric Videos: Caligula’s Horse – Into The White (live, supporting Opeth)

The C-Horse team certainly know how to make spectacular live videos! Similar to the last one, this video for the beautiful tune “Into The White” is filmed with fantastic images and audio, really emphasizing the greatest moments in the song. It’s recorded at the Brisbane concert at Eaton Hills Hotel, where Caligula’s Horse had the well deserved honour to be the opening act for Opeth. Who needs Opeth when you can listen to these guys? *wink*


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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Matt’s Top 15 Albums of 2014!!!

tumblr_static_cm4blpgifnwo8wokk0wo4scscIt’s that time of year again for arbitrary lists of really great albums that were released since the last time I did one of these things.  Contributing to my absolute burnout of writing about kick ass metal bands, I can not think of another year where there were just so damn many stellar records released.  I simply had to say fuck it, step back, and enjoy the great stuff I already had.  Sure, I missed out on some great stuff, but on the other hand, all killer no filler.  To try to make up for the insane amount of great albums this year I’ve expanded my usual 10 to 15 and will have an honorable mentions post sometime in the near future.  I hope you find yourself something cool to listen to with this list or at least nod in agreement with some of my picks.  Thanks for reading, sticking with AMSOM, and being awesome and stuff.  Enjoy!!! Peace Love and Metal!!!

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Album Review: Black Crown Initiate – The Wreckage of Stars


Release Date: September 30th, 2014 on eOne Entertainment

Tracks: 10

Length: 53 minutes

Genre: Pushing limits in Progressive death metal

Location: Pennsylvania, US

Previous releases: Song of The Crippled Bull EP 2013

Recommended for fans of: Early Opeth, The Contortionist, Fallujah, Fleshgod Apocalypse


“…And we stand still, nothing worth changing, no cause to seek within our minds. There will never be another dawn here, a time where I’d feel, a time for taking and the path to freedom passed us by. Watch the waves and wither away here.”

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Sorry, Opeth!

When we Metal State reviewers gave the round table treatment to Opeth’s “Pale Communion” earlier this year I was less than flattering about the album. I said it wasn’t hard enough to be good metal or inventive enough to be good prog.

It isn’t metal. It is, however, damn fine heavy prog rock. That is what Opeth intended it to be, I believe, and that’s what it became.

Opeth and their industry associates haven’t said anything about the review. Nor have my fellow reviewers or any Opeth fans. It’s my conscience that’s been smacking me on both earholes.

I did update my comments and rating of the album in our published review, but such things tend to go unnoticed. If we’re wrong — not necessarily when we’re told we’re wrong but when we know it deep inside ourselves — we should retract and correct. It gives me the greatest of pleasure to concede how very wrong I was about “Pale Communion”. The more I listen to it, the more I know it’s one of the best prog albums of the year.


Album Review: Soen – Tellurian

soen-tellurian-7113“I will fight the system, break it down and redesign it, I don’t want anything the way it’s created by them. Where is my right to choose, if all the options are theirs?

Release Date: November 4th 2014 on Spinefarm Records

Tracks: 9

Length: 53 minutes

Genre:  Atmospheric progressive metal

Previous releases: Cognitive 2012

Location: Sweden/US

Recommended for fans of:  Opeth, Leprous, Rishloo, Riverside, Karnivool

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2011, #20 – #17


Rare photograph of a New Zealand alligator playing the Belgian violin.

Yet again today I encountered some of the weird prejudices that prevail in the world of popular music, as in FM radio and the current Top 20 Best-Marketed Hits of the Week.

The young fellow I spoke to in a store was surprised that someone of my age, which is 64, would listen to modern music at all [Prejudice 1]. He was even more surprised that I would listen to something as weird as metal [Prejudice 2]. When I mentioned that I would be posting some of my favourite music from Sweden, Belgium and New Zealand, he exclaimed: “Oh, well, I wouldn’t listen to it anyway. I don’t listen to anything unless it’s from England or America because I can’t understand the words [Prejudice 3].”

I could add [Ignorance 1] but maybe they don’t speak English in New Zealand. Isn’t it a region in Mongolia?


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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2008, #4 – #1

MetalCatDark Metal Cat has issued an advisory that this series has come under the scrutiny of the NSA because today’s episode includes no American bands. American metalheads may laugh at this allegation. Yeah? How did the NSA know what I was going to select before I did?

So today we have Amon Amarth, Sieges Even, Opeth and To-Mera. Dark Metal Cat has issued an advisory that the NSA has listed all of those band names as code words for secret meeting places where “strange people” in the USA listen to European bands.

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2005 / #6 – #4

MetalCatFrom my selections today it looks like I’m doing a hit parade of Swedish metal. Do you Swedes appreciate how much the metal world owes to your country? You do? Good. Send each of us a Volvo, thanks.

Maybe I should rearrange my sets of annual hit parades and do three American bands in a row. Then we’ll each get an apple pie. Dark Metal Cat wants his with huge dollops of cream.

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Mammal’s 21-Year Hit Parade: 2003 / #3 – #1

MetalCatIt may seem ironic that Chimaira wins one of the top three spots in my year-by-year hit parade a week after they finally split up, supposedly for ever. They made a live come-back that reportedly drew ridiculously small audiences.

Whatever the reasons for their calling it a day, I wish all of them well. They gave me some good listening, which is ultimately all that anyone can ask of a band.

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