Month: November 2016

Cover Comparison: Trivium vs Lacuna Coil (REM)- Losing My Religion

I haven’t done a cover comparison in a bit. I was searching for covers to share with you all and came across these two bands, Trivium and Lacuna Coil doing covers of R.E.M.’s classic “Losing My Religion.” I’m interested to hear what you all think about these renditions and whose is good and whose isn’t.

 

Trivium- Losing My Religion:

 

Lacuna Coil- Losing My Religion:

 

R.E.M.- Losing My Religion:

 

Album Review: Vanishing Life- Surveillance

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When I first heard about Vanishing Life, I already knew, without hearing a song, that this band was going to be something I’m going to enjoy. Having one of my all time favorite drummers in Jaime Miller from Snot behind the kit and Walter Schreifels of Quicksand singing, this was sure to be something special. Joining them on guitar and bass, are Zach Blair of Rise Against and Autry Fulbright of And You Will Know us by the Trail of Dead. The first 7″ they put out was two songs of pure energy and unrelenting aggression. Now on their first full length album Surveillance, Vanishing Life has put together a record that harks back to the days when music had something very important to say.

From the urgency of the first song “Realist,” you can tell that you are in for quite a ride. “Outlier,” has a really cool melodic tinge to it without losing the “vibe” of what the band is. “Painter” is the type of song you’d expect from Walter, which has a sort of Rival Schools feel to it. “Pretty Ruined” has a post-hardcore vibe. “Exile” is a great punk rock track. “Image” is a pretty poignant song lyrically. “Vanishing Life” is full of the energy you’d want from a band in this style. “Thinking Weightless” is a really cool song that has great dynamics. “People Running” was featured on their first 7″ and the first song I heard from Vanishing Life, and this song is raw and full of punk ferociousness. Closing song “Big Other” has an epic vibe to it. I could almost see this as a pre-cursor to what the band might evolve into.

There is something beautiful about the simplicity of these songs. These guys are all great musicians and can play the hell out of their instruments, but they understand the need to play according to the song. Everyone in Vanishing Life lives in different areas but, I really hope that doesn’t cause this to be a one off project. This debut album really shows promise of what the four of them can do together and I’d love to hear more.

Overall Rating= B

Vanishing Life- Surveillance:

Cover Song: The Unseen (Rolling Stones)- Paint It Black

I really dig when friends of mine make suggestions to me (hint hint wink wink). Yesterday during the chaotic aftermath of the election, my friend Kevin passed this cover of the Rolling Stones “Paint it Black” by underrated punk band The Unseen. This isn’t the best cover, but it is pretty decent. So check it out, and let me know what you think. And thank you Kevin!

 

The Unseen- Paint It Black:

 

 

Bands That Should Return: Rage Against The Machine

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I’m going to keep this short and sweet. Zach De La Rocha, get back in front of the microphone with Tom Morello, Brad Wilk, and Tim Commerford. Knock off this Prophets of Rage junk, and do the right thing.

The world really needs Rage Against The Machine now more than ever.

Rage Against The Machine- Live at Woodstock 99:

 

Rage Against The Machine- Live at Grand Olympic Auditorium:

 

 

 

Greatest Political Songs

Today is election day. Probably one of the most important elections in the history of the United States. I thought that today I should put together a list of the greatest political songs. This is open to all who would like to contribute a suggestion to the list. I will be updating this a lot!

Neil Young- Rockin In The Free World:

 

Creedence Clearwater Revival- Fortunate Son:

 

The Beatles- Revolution:

 

Rolling Stones- Street Fighting Man:

 

Bob Dylan- The Times They Are A Changing:

 

Bob Dylan- Only A Pawn In Their Game:

 

Bob Dylan- Masters Of War:

 

Rage Against The Machine- Sleep Now In The Fire:

Rage Against The Machine- Killin In The Name:

 

Buffalo Springfield- For What It’s Worth:

 

U2- Sunday Bloody Sunday:

 

The Clash- Clampdown:

 

The Clash- Know Your Rights:

 

John Lennon- Imagine:

 

Marvin Gaye- What’s Going On:

 

Bruce Springsteen- Born In The USA:

 

Gil Scott Heron- The Revolution Will Not Be Televised:

 

The Doors- Five To One:

 

Green Day- American Idiot:

 

Rise Against- State Of The Union:

 

Black Flag- Rise Above:

 

Bad Religion- American Jesus:

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Second Look: Trivium

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There are times that when a band first comes on the scene people tend to be very cynical. Especially when the band is made up of teenagers. About 12 years ago, Trivium was thrust onto the heavy music scene, and was met with mixed thoughts. These kids could play their instruments and shred, but that wasn’t enough for most people. Trivium’s first couple albums Ember To Inferno, Ascendancy, and The Crusade, were barely showing the full potential of what the band could be. I first took notice of Trivium when Ascendancy came out. I bought the album and enjoyed it for what it was, a solid piece of metal, that played off the “metalcore” genre that was big at the time. I saw them twice on that cycle, and they did put on a great live show, and were very gracious and humble guys. When it came to The Crusade, I didn’t bother with it. It didn’t seem to have a sense of real depth, and it lacked a real direction of what the band was. Fast forward a few years, to a night when I was searching for something to listen to, and out of the corner of my eye, I saw Trivium had put out a new album. So naturally I was curious to see and hear what they had become, and I was genuinely intrigued with what the band had become. For the first time I really thought that Trivium had come into their own.

I took the time to go back to all the albums I missed, and I have to say, since their album Shogun, Trivium has really found their sound, and honed their songwriting craft by leaps and bound. Shogun, was thrashy and heavy, with moments of melody that didn’t let it get too extreme. The follow up the very epic In Waves, is an album that really took it up a notch. You can really hear the amount of work and passion in this album. The next album Vengeance Falls, is somewhat of an experimental album for the band. They chose to work with David Draiman of Disturbed (who is a big fan of Trivium), and the results of their work turned out to be quite interesting. The vocals on the album featured a more dramatic singing approach, which seemed to have given singer/guitarist Matt Heafy, better control and understanding of what to do. Their latest album and the one that got me to listen to them again, Silence in the Snow, is everything you would hope the band could evolve into. The songwriting, playing style, vocals, lyrics and all around performance, shows a band that has really come into their own.

Trivium has defied the critics and have finally matured into a band that can really deliver. Not that they couldn’t before, but with anything, time and growth can make things that much better. I highly recommend taking a second look at Trivium.

 

Shogun:

 

In Waves:

 

Vengeance Falls:

 

Silence In The Snow:

Band Of The Week: Car Bomb

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Being original isn’t easy these days. There is a sense of “it’s been done before,” but, there are some bands out there that have been inspired to create music that takes it up a notch. One band in particular that the inspiration bug has hit is Car Bomb. They have released a new album called META that is spectacular, and the footage I’ve seen of their live shows, makes them really something to watch. If you were to take a bit of Meshuggah, a bit of Gojira, a little Deftones (more of their atmospheric sound), and a dash of The Dillinger Escape Plan, what you get is Car Bomb. This band packs one hell of a punch. From the technical instrumentation, to the scathing vocals, Car Bomb is quite the band to look out for. They are punishing in their delivery, yet have a keen sense of space and bits of melody.

 

Car Bomb- Meta:

 

Video for “Black Blood:”

 

Cover Song: Metallica (Lynyrd Skynyrd)- Tuesday’s Gone

Metallica does a great job covering the classic Lynyrd Skynyrd song “Tuesday’s Gone.”  At Metallica’s 30th anniversary shows, they invited some friends up on stage to join in the cover of this song. Joining them was Pepper Keenan (Down/Corrosion of Conformity), Jerry Cantrell (Alice in Chains), Jim Martin (Faith No More), and Gary Rossington (Lynryd Skynryd).  Check it out!!

 

Metallica and Friends- Tuesday’s Gone:

 

Lynryd Skynyrd- Tuesday’s Gone:

Guest Vocalist: Anthony Green of Circa Survive & Saosin

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This past year Saosin returned with a great new album, and their first since 2003 to feature original singer Anthony Green. You might know Anthony from the band Circa Survive, which he started after leaving Saosin. His voice is very unique and interesting. He’s got a very high pitched singing voice and one of the best higher screams I’ve heard. Since the new Saosin album Along The Shadows came out, I’ve been listening to it a lot and it’s quite good. It also got me wondering what other songs Anthony has guested on over the years. So here you go!

A Life Once Lost- All Teeth:

 

Envy On The Coast- The Gift of Paralysis:

 

Fear Before the March of the Flames- My Deer Hunter:

 

Balance and Composure- Keepsake:

 

The Receiving End of Sirens- Flee The Factory:

 

Album Review: Red Fang- Only Ghosts

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After 3 years of non stop touring and writing, Red Fang have returned with their fourth studio album, Only Ghosts. Produced by Ross Robinson, this new album features some of the best performances Red Fang has ever recorded. There is a level of volume about Red Fang that is gripping and explosive, and on Only Ghosts, those elements are even more present. The hooks and riffs have a very strong impact throughout the 10 songs. One thing that I noticed on this new album is that the band have really become solid songwriters. There is a real sense of maturity to this album, and that really brings about something different for them. Tucked in the album are bursts of textures the band have never experimented with, along with ambiance and space to let the songs feel like a different beast. This is an “album” through and through. The mixing of the album is top notch, courtesy of Joe Barresi. Stand out songs include “Flies,” “Cut it Short,” “Shadows,” “The Smell of the Sound,” ” I Am a Ghost,” and “Living in Lye.”

Red Fang have always been a band that makes music they enjoy, and they really showcase that here. Working with Ross, seems to have really brought out something more from them all, with the results being superb. I love hearing a band grow like this and make an album that will stand up with their earlier material.

Overall Rating: B+

Red Fang- Only Ghosts:

 

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