Every Friday I turn the blog over to Dan Marsicano for his Retro Recommendation, giving you a chance to learn about underrated and overlooked gems from metal's past.
This week is a very special edition of Retro Recommendation. It's the Italian band Dark Quarterer's 1987 self-titled debut. The album was recommended by Cormorant frontman Arthur von Nagel, and Dan spoke with von Nagel about the album and how it influenced Cormorant's music. He was also able to interview Dark Quarterer vocalist/bassist Gianni Nepi, who gives the historical background of the record.
Other Recent Retro Recommendations:
In addition to his main gig as Sepultura's guitarist, Andreas Kisser is also part of the band De La Tierra, who released their debut album earlier this year. That was on the heels of 2013's Sepultura album The Mediator Between Head and Hands Must Be The Heart. I spoke with Kisser about the genesis of De La Tierra, Sepultura's U.S. tour plans, another solo album, his son following in his musical footsteps and other topics.
(photo courtesy Roadrunner Records)
As the '80s came to a close, a lot of different styles were competing for attention. Grunge hadn't yet killed mainstream metal, so groups like Skid Row and Badlands made strong showings. The underground was thriving as well, with death metal legends Morbid Angel along with thrashers Exodus, Testament and Annihilator releasing excellent albums. Here's our list of 1989's best metal releases.
And in case you missed any of my previous lists, here they are:
- Top 10 Heavy Metal Albums Of 1988
- Top 10 Heavy Metal Albums Of 1987
- Top 10 Heavy Metal Albums Of 1986
- Top 10 Heavy Metal Albums Of 1985
- Top 10 Heavy Metal Albums Of 1984
- Top 10 Heavy Metal Albums Of 1983
- Top 10 Heavy Metal Albums Of 1982
- Top 10 Heavy Metal Albums Of 1981
- Top 10 Heavy Metal Albums Of 1980
Which album do you think was the best of 1989? Post your response in the comments section below.
It's a busy week for new releases, as we review more than two dozen albums. Check out our opinion of the latest from Acheron, ADX, Agiel, Anarchos, Aurora Borealis, Bast, Battleaxe, Bleeding Fist, Colossus, Destrage, Ektomorf, Hammercult, I Am Heresy, Kayser, Kuolemanlaakso, Mount Salem, Nothing, The Overseer, Prizehog, Profezia, Ready Set Fall, Suffer In Silence, Vanishing Point and Wolves Like Us.
(album cover courtesy SPV Records)
Here are the new heavy metal album releases for this week. For the most detailed and up-to-date schedule, check out our complete Heavy Metal CD Release Date calendar.
March 4, 2014
Acheron - Kult des Hasses (Listenable)
Agiel - Dark Pantheons EP (Deepsend)
Anarchos - Descent Into The Maelstrom (Vic)
Battleaxe - Heavy Metal Sanctuary (SPV)
Bleeding Fist - Deaths Old Stench (Moribund)
Carnifex - Die Without Hope (Nuclear Blast)
Cholera - Plagiarised Hope (COF/Holy Ground)
Colossus - Lobotocracy (Klonosphere)
Comeback Kid - Die Knowing (Victory)
Cremetory - Antiserum (SPV)
Destrage - Are You Kidding Me? No. (Metal Blade)
Ektomorf - Retribution (AFM)
Fossils - Flesh Hammer (Indisciplinarian)
Frail Grounds - The Fields Of Trauma (Hostile)
Freedom Call - Beyond (SPV)
Hammercult - Steelcrusher (SPV)
Hirax - Immortal Legacy (SPV)
I Am Heresy - Thy Will (Century Media)
Kayser - Read Your Enemy (Listenable)
Kuolemanlaakso - Tulijoutsen (Svart)
Morbus Chron - Sweven (Century Media)
Mount Salem - Endless EP Re-Release (Metal Blade)
Nothing - Guilty Of Everything (Relapse)
The Overseer - Rest And Let Go (Solid State)
Portal - For All That Is Damned To Vanish (Vic)
Prizehog - Re-Unvent the Whool (Eolian Empire)
Profezia - Oracolo Suicida (Moribund)
Ready, Set, Fall - Memento (Lifeforce)
Ribspreader - Meathymns (Vic)
Scars Divide - Scars Divide EP (Tenacity)
The Strigas - A Poisoned Kiss To Reality (Southern Brigade)
Suffer In Silence - Behind The Truth (Sliptrick)
Vanishing Point - Distant Is The Sun (AFM)
Wild Throne - Blood Maker EP (Brutal Panda)
Wolves Like Us - Black Soul Choir (Prosthetic)
2014 is off to a slow start. There have been a lot of disappointing and pedestrian metal releases so far this year. February continued that trend, with not very many standout albums. Behemoth tops the list, a highly anticipated release that actually met its lofty expectations. Check out our list, and let us know what your choice is for the month's best new metal album.
(album cover courtesy Metal Blade Records)
Hammercult hail from Tel Aviv, Israel, and their second album is Steelcrusher. Yakir Shochat is the band's vocalist, and he tells us about their background, the new album, the guest appearance from Sepultura guitarist Andreas Kisser, the metal scene in Tel Aviv and other topics.
(photo courtesy SPV Records)
The Canadian death metal band Kataklysm will hit the road in April in support of their latest album Waiting for the End to Come The Belgian band Aborted will open the North American shows.
"It's been a little while since we hit the road in North America with Kataklysm," says vocalist Maurizio Iacono. "We were bummed out when our tour with Sepultura was cancelled, so we decided to do what our fans have been asking us for and do a headlining run. This is guaranteed to be a good time with our friends in Aborted and will also be a two part tour; we plan on returning in the Fall again to all the cities we are missing on this first part. Judging by our recent shows, the new material has been going over amazingly well live! We look forward to seeing you guys in April!!!"
Kataklysm and Aborted Tour Dates:
04/04/14 - Club Soda - Montreal, QC
04/05/14 - El Mocambo - Toronto, ON
04/06/14 - The Foundry - Lakewood, OH
04/07/14 - High Noon Saloon - Madison, WI
04/08/14 - Zoo Cabaret - Winnipeg, MB
04/09/14 - The Exchange - Regina, SK
04/10/14 - Pawn Shop - Edmonton, AB
04/11/14 - Republik - Calgary, AB
04/12/14 - Columbo Lodge - Kamloops, BC
04/13/14 - Rickshaw Theatre - Vancouver, BC
04/14/14 - Studio Seven - Seattle, WA
04/15/14 - Jub Jubs - Reno, NV
04/16/14 - DNA Lounge - San Francisco, CA
04/17/14 - Ramona Mainstage - Ramona, CA
04/18/14 - Mirror Image - Anaheim, CA
04/19/14 - Joe's Grotto - Phoenix, AZ
04/20/14 - Tricky Falls - El Paso, TX
04/21/14 - Marquis Theatre - Denver, CO
04/22/14 - Riot Room - Kansas City, MO
04/23/14 - Reggie's - Chicago, IL
5 Questions With... is your chance to get to know a new or up-and-coming metal band. The Italian group Destrage recently released their third album Are You Kidding Me? No. Vocalist Paolo Colavolpe introduces us to Destrage.
Give us a brief history of Destrage.
The current lineup has been consistent since 2007. After our first demo Self Id Generator we signed a deal with Howling Bull Records, Japan, and released the full length Urban Being, which also saw a worldwide release by Coroner Records in 2009. The second full length The King Is Fat'n'Old was released in 2010 by Coroner Records and Howling Bull, supported by European and Japanese tours and international festivals. In 2012, we wrote and recorded our third album. The result, Are You Kidding Me? No. led to a worldwide deal with Metal Blade Records.
How did the songwriting and recording process for Are You Kidding Me? No compare with your first two albums?
We recorded and mixed the first two albums to the Ettore Rigotti's db Studio in Turin. For this album, the instrumental recordings took place in Milan at Reclab Studio with Larsen Premoli, the vocal recordings in Livorno at Adrenaline Studio with Daniele Nelli and finally the mix and master were done in New Jersey at The Machine Studio By Will Putney.
We were looking for someone who could mix albums from different moods, genre and backgrounds, who could catch the band's sound and bring it at its best. Will Putney has worked with huge bands from different scenes, so we thought he could be the right person for us, and he definitely was. We spent great time with great professionals and amazing persons. We're really excited about the final result!
How has your sound evolved/progressed on this one?
Todd Lyons has been involved in the music industry for a while, in several different capacities. Back in the day he wrote for Creem Magazine, and he's also worked in A&R and as a composer and engineer. His tracks have been used on television shows, commercials and movies. And of course he has written for About.com Heavy Metal for the past few years. Once a month we let Lyons roar, giving him a platform to speak his piece on a music related issue. This month, Todd looks at the NSA and heavy metal.