Hemina – Night Echoes

Hemina are one of those bands that I really want to/”should” like but have never quite gotten myself around to. On previous releases, something in their sound felt off to me, even though it bares favorable comparisons to groups like Ayreon, Voyager, Haken or even Caligula’s Horse (it’s not a…

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Disco Loadout: 2018 In Review

Four years ago, I started to keep a complete list of every band I saw. Three years ago, I began kicking myself for not starting that childishly simple task sooner. Never mind. At least I can tell you exactly what I got up to this year – with one important caveat. A…

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The Progress Melter – Steel Panther and the Extent of “Comedy”

This should go without saying, but women have always had the ability to excel at playing guitar, and they often have. The rock and metal scene specifically has benefited from the contributions of players like Chelsea Wolfe, Liz Buckingham (Electric Wizard), Simone Dow (Voyager), Nancy Wilson (Heart), Lori Von Linstruth (Ayreon), Sarah Longfield, Laura…

Stargazer – Tui La

Think of Caligula’s Horse or Vildhjarta, two extreme ends of the same phenomenon. They each stretch the limits of what the genre does in opposite directions: one towards the melodic side and one towards the heavier side. Now to these annals we can add Stargazer; while their album Tui La, which sees release on August 18th via Famined Records, is not their first piece of music released, it is their first full length album. It is chock full with the kind of formula we described above, a djent-y approach to progressive metal which blends chugs, technical riffs, off kilter vocal work and an overall progressive structure. However, unlike the bands mentioned above (and perhaps most similarly like Uneven Structure), Stargazer refuse to sacrifice either side of the formula, instead preferring to wield both approaches at the same time.

Voyager – Ghost Mile

It’s strange to think that Voyager have been active since before the turn of the century and actively releasing full length albums since 2003, beginning with Element V. Way back when, the now-progressive metal band from Perth would have been more readily lumped in with power metal mainstays like Rhapsody…