Author: Hobbes Caltous


SOUND STORM – VERTIGO (Rockshots Records) Listen to the first couple tracks of Vertigo, and you’ll easily figure out what Torino, Italy’s Sound Storm is going for; all out, in your face cinematics, and at least in part, they succeed! The album starts off with a nice, short intro, as the title track. To its credit, it doesn’t run long and it has a well defined direction. Nice job. It carries directly into “The Dragonfly”, which continues Vertigo’s semi-slow tempo with some kickin’ double bass. If one dug deep enough, one could find himself thinking there’s a bit of similarity...

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CARDIANT – MIRRORS (Inverse records) Looking at the album cover, you’d never suspect that Finland’s Cardiant would sound like anything but Green Jelly (Jello?). I like being surprised like that. In fact, these guys don’t sound anything like that at all! If I had to narrow it down, I’d say that they sound like a mixture of Dragonforce, Ghost, and Avenged Sevenfold. Erik’s voice just has that M. Shadows timber to it. I actually thought he was Robert Stjärnström from Machinae Supremecy for a good two songs. Buuut then I checked and alas, no. The disk is good. Not great, but it...

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BABY WAS A SINNER: A TRIBUTE TO CHAD HANKS OF AMERICAN HEAD CHARGE A great man was lost to the depths today; he was a talented musician, an intelligent nihilist, and all around good person. He was an avid fan of the band KISS, a sushi aficionado, a Ren & Stimpy fan, a dog lover, and he enjoyed the Mass Effect trilogy.  And certainly not least of all he loved his mother with all his heart. His name was Chad Hanks and he was a very good friend of mine. Normally I’m also pretty indifferent to death. I’ve always been...

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POISON PILL – POISON PILL (Sliptrick Records) Here’s the funny part: I actually asked for this album to review and then completely forgot what Poison Pill sounded like! Chalk it up to being super busy with the show, and don’t in any way let it reflect on these guys, because you’d be doing yourself a disservice. Poison Pill starts off with an intro that, thankfully, didn’t drag on too long or was too monotonous. It then kicks into top gear overdrive with “Wake the Sinner,” which, when I heard the guitar divebomb- and I’m being completely honest – I...

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BEYOND VISIONS – CATCH 22 (Bleeding Music Records) Whenever I get assigned a review, I generally wait until after I’ve listened to the music to read the press release – I like a surprise. So when I popped in Beyond Visions‘ newest offering, Catch 22, I was quite pleasantly taken aback! Sometimes, you get a band and don’t really know what to expect; either the band name or the album art can be pretty vague as to the band’s style, and this is no different. I had no idea that I would be greeted with some pretty damned good...

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ANDREW W.K. IN MILWAUKEE, WI ON OCT 18, 2017 I once met Andrew W.K., when I saw his band for the first time. Afterward, we got to talking for a little over two hours, which his tour manager got more and more pissed off. During this conversation, amidst my shit talking of groups like Backstreet Boys, this man let fly with a barrage of logical cannon fire that sticks with me to this day. in fact, I wrote it down so I would never forget it. Here’s what he said to me: “The thing you have to remember is,...

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LOSTAIR – AD JUBILAEUM (Revalve Records) I didn’t even read the press release, because with an album title like Ad Jubileaum, I wanted to keep an open mind. What I was expecting was Italian death metal, and that’s not quite what I got. “Ad Jubilaeum” is Latin for “The Jubilee.” I don’t know if there’s a special meaning to that, but I suspect that it was titled that because it sounds cool. From listening to the lyrics and reading the notes, I know that this album is a concept album dealing with the band’s feelings on religion and its dominance...

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GLASS MIND – DODECAEDRO (Rock Shots Records) We don’t get a lot of music from Mexico, and when we do, it’s mostly death metal. It’s in that respect that I imagine Glass Mind having a tough time booking shows, because I can’t imagine there being a lot of prog rock bands down there, and even less fans for such a band, especially given that there’s no vocals. That said, I found Dodecaedro enjoyable because, after a long day of listening to music that makes you want to kill someone, singer-less prog rock is a good palate cleanser. Listening to...

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