Tag: heavy metal

New Metallica – “Cyanide”

New Metallica – “Cyanide”

Music
A live version of "Cyanide", from the Metallica's upcoming album Death Magnetic, was uploaded to YouTube yesterday.  It's from the band's recent performance at OzzFest in Dallas.  To my ears it sounds like the Black Album era, with a bit more complexity in the songwriting.  The short clip of another song at the beginning actually sounds pretty cool.  Check it out: Sounds like it could be a good sign for the rest of the album, but I don't yet by into the band hype about its all-consuming awesomeness.  In any case, the Rick Rubin-produced Death Magnetic, unfortunate cover and all, comes out September 12.
Meme time: Pick an album for every year you’ve been alive

Meme time: Pick an album for every year you’ve been alive

Music
From Idolator via the AV Club comes a pretty cool music meme - compile a list of your favorite albums, with one for each year you've been alive. Sounds easy enough, but some years are positively stacked with music I love.  Forcing me to choose among my musical children is just so...cruel. For me the most bountiful years were 1975-1978, 1980, 1982-1984, 1990, 1997, 1999, 2002, 2006, and 2007. 1975 - Kiss, Alive! 1976 - Led Zeppelin, Presence 1977 - Rush, A Farewell to Kings 1978 - Ace Frehley/Kiss, Ace Frehley 1979 - Pink Floyd, The Wall 1980 - Genesis, Duke 1981 - Rush, Moving Pictures 1982 - Rush, Signals 1983 - Iron Maiden, Piece of Mind 1984 - Iron Maiden, Powerslave 1985 - Kiss, Asylum 1986 - Queensrÿche, Rage for Order 1987 - Anthrax, Among the Living 1988 - Queensr
Album cover of the week: British Steel

Album cover of the week: British Steel

Album Cover of the Week
As we approach this most American of holidays this week, I thought I'd throw a curveball and present the cover from one of the quintessential albums of the so-called New Wave of British Heavy Metal movement. Released in April 1980, Judas Priest's British Steel is one of the seminal albums of heavy metal. The music is reflective of the cover art -- brutally simple and simply brutal. The group had been refining its approach since their 1974 debut, Rocka Rolla. Gone were the slow-building gems and gentle numbers from albums like Sad Wings of Destiny and Killing Machine (aka Hell Bent for Leather in the U.S.). In its place are nine slabs of vintage headbanging glory, such as "Breaking the Law", "Metal Gods", and "Living After Midnight". Scott Ian commented on the record title whe...
No storm or heavy weather will rock the boat you’ll see

No storm or heavy weather will rock the boat you’ll see

Music
Growing up in the '80s, my musical universe basically consisted of three bands - Kiss, Iron Maiden, and everyone else (Rush became the third member of the holy trinity of music closer to high school, but that's another topic). Sadly, somehow I never made it to see either band during their accepted prime periods (I was way too young to have seen mid-'70s Kiss and just barely too young to have caught mid-'80s Maiden). In the case of Kiss, that was rectified when I caught them twice during their much-ballyhooed (and first) reunion tour in 1996. And now, just about 25 years after I became a fan, I finally witnessed an Iron Maiden concert on Saturday night at the PNC Bank Arts Center. I use the word "witnessed" because this wasn't just a matter of a band playing music in front of a crowd....
Gray Flannel Mixtape – 10 Classic B-sides

Gray Flannel Mixtape – 10 Classic B-sides

Music
Looking back, mixtapes sure were a pain in the ass to put together. But man, were they fun. So for just a minute, let's imagine iPods don't exist (I know, scary) and we are putting together a new one. The ground rules for the songs on this mixtape are: Each song was released as the B-side of a commercially available single. The songs did not appear on a regular album (at least not at first). No more than one song per band. I must like the song (the critical part). "Total Eclipse" (Iron Maiden) - Over the years Iron Maiden has compiled what is probably the strongest collection of B-sides in heavy metal history. This one nearly made it onto the group's seminal 1982 album, The Number of the Beast, but was left off and instead included on the "Run to the Hills" single. Th...
In Concert: Queensrÿche at the Nokia Theater

In Concert: Queensrÿche at the Nokia Theater

Music
It's been nearly 10 years since I've seen Queensrÿche in concert, and that was for the group's ill-fated jaunt in support of Hear in the Now Frontier. That tour was canceled after the band's record label, EMI, went into the crapper. A lot has changed for the group since then, not the least of which was the departure of co-founder and guitarist Chris DeGarmo. For 2006, Queensrÿche went back to the future and released a sequel to their 1988 magnum opus, Operation: Mindcrime, cleverly titled Operation: Mindcrime II. While not quite the classic the first one was, OM:II was good enough to rekindle my interest in the group. It was that rekindled interest that brought me to see them perform at a sold-out Nokia Theater last Friday night. The theater, I must say, is a very nice ven
Album review – Queensrÿche, Operation: Mindcrime II

Album review – Queensrÿche, Operation: Mindcrime II

Music
I've had about a week to digest the latest release from Queensrÿche, Operation: Mindcrime II. It was an album I dreaded listening to when I first heard the group was planning a sequel a year or two ago. In most cases, sequels serve only to reinforce the fact that one was enough. Notable exceptions to this rule are, of course, The Godfather Part II and Superman II. Oh, and The Empire Strikes Back.  Which was Part II at one point, and now is just Part V. So first things first -- for all the positives of this album, it is no Operation: Mindcrime. Oh, the effort is clearly there. But what is lacking is the grand vision and sheer power of the first installment. OM:I is the product of a band clearly firing on all cylinders. OM:II runs at about ¾ speed.  I can appreciate that while Queensrÿche
A Loving Tribute to “Slave to the Metal”

A Loving Tribute to “Slave to the Metal”

Music
In the days before CD players, iPods and file sharing services became a part of everyday life (aka The Dark Ages), the mix tape was an essential part of a music lover's life. There were two varieties of mix tapes - homemade (for yourself or some girlfriend/boyfriend whose name you can't even remember anymore) and store-bought. Store-bought mix tapes (known in the industry as "compilations") were superior in two ways - they exposed you to bands you might have never heard before, and they didn't take five hours to put together on your crappy home stereo. During a road trip from New Jersey to Florida in the mid-'80s, I purchased my first mix tape at a Stuckey's in South Carolina. Or maybe it was North Carolina. No, it was South Carolina. Maybe Georgia. Anyway, being a proud metal he...