Thursday, 29 May 2014

Extreme Thursday: Liquid Graveyard

It's been a strange old week here at Femetalism, with everyone going off in different directions and having holidays in disparate parts of the country. I for one spent a weekend in fog and pouring rain up a hill in Derbyshire drinking tea and listening to Agalloch. But now we're back, chilled out and relaxed, just in time for yet another bloody Thursday.

If there's one thing musicians in successful bands love to have, it's side projects. It gives them room to breathe, try new stuff, experiment and, hopefully, produce some kick-ass metal while they're doing it. This week we have the side project of Cancer front-man John Walker; a bit of avante-garde progressive death metal in the form of Liquid Graveyard.

Liquid Graveyard were formed way back in 2006 by John, his wife Raquel and Adrian de Buitléar of Mourning Beloveth. Mixing many different styles and influences, the result is a somewhat eclectic mix of every bit of metal pulled together by the precise playing and hugely diverse vocal range of Raquel. Whether growling deep and slow, taking it higher with a more ethereal sound, or messing with synths and electronics, Raquel's vocal abilities pull together the disparate riffs, beats and styles.

Wednesday, 28 May 2014

Fusion Metal

Something that has often fascinated me with metal music is the fusion of different musics to create something new.  There are the popular metal fusions such as folk metal or opera metal, but there are also some genres that stand alone, that fuse metal with some altogether… different.

Take Finnish cello metal band Apocalyptica. Starting life as a Metallica cover band, with a difference, the band is made up of 3 classically trained cellists and a drummer. Their music borrows elements from a wide variety of genres, but they are effectively a band that plays metal on cellos.

Tuesday, 27 May 2014

INTERVIEW: April Weeps

As you may have seen on Facebook, one of my favourite albums at the moment is Outer Calm, Pain Within by atmospheric metal band April Weeps.  April Weeps hail from the small town of Dunajská Streda in Slovakia and are made up of 7 individuals all with different styles and takes on music who have come together to create something truly unique.  The line up is currently N on 'vokills', Marta on vocals, Dex and Doki on guitars, Tosho on bass, Roland on drums and Stronghold on synths.

A few of the guys from the band talked to Femetalism about the band, their music, their nuclear bunker, a new video and what the future might hold for the band.

Sunday, 25 May 2014

New Release: Ravenscry - The Attraction of Opposites (May 2014)

Picture by Camilla Sarzi Photoart

Melodic Metal band Ravenscry release their second album The Attraction of Opposites on May 27th.   The band were formed in 2008 in Italy and are made up of Giulia Stefani (vocals), Paul Raimondi (guitars), Mauro Paganelli (guitar), Andrea "Fagio" Fagiuoli (bass) and Simon Carminati (drums).  The band released their EP in 2009 and their first album One Way Out in 2011.

Friday, 23 May 2014

Bandcamp Series: Whispering Woods - Fairy Woods (2011)

Whispering Woods are a metal band from Romania.  Formed in 2010, the band released their EP in 2010 and their debut album Fairy Woods, in 2011.  The band is currently made up of Alexandra Burcă (soprano vocals), Corina Hamat (mezzo soprano vocals), Cătălina Popa (flute), Cora Miron (keyboards), Alex Dascăl (drums), Istvan Vladareanu (bass guitar) and Doru Căilean (lead guitar).

Thursday, 22 May 2014

Extreme Thursday: Black September

The summer approaches, and the day star threatens to burn our pale, necrotic skin. The days are growing longer, the comfort of the dead of night a fading memory. But we will always have Thursday.

This Thursday we are taking offence. It's something that's done a lot in the extreme metal world. Whether it be the blatant horrific imagery, unnecessary unpleasantness, or sacrilegious connotations, it's obvious that being vile and offensive is key to many bands' images. This is especially true in the more extreme death and grindcore bands.

This week's offensive band is Black September. When I first heard the name, it just sounded like a pretty cool band name. Upon searching, however, I discovered that it's actually the name of the 1970-1971 Jordanian civil war and, subsequently, the name of the group responsible for the kidnap and murder of 11 Israeli athletes and officials at the 1972 Olympics. This has been considered distasteful by some, even within the world of metal. I can't help thinking that that makes it a perfect death metal band name.

Friday, 16 May 2014

Supporting Indie Music: Unseelie - Urban Fantasy

Some months ago I talked about the rise of independent music artists and how they are turning to the Internet to help crowd fund their endeavors.

Take a look here at Northern Oak who have successfully funded and are due to release their new album soon and here at Stream of Passion who recently released their first crowd funded and fully independent album.

There are numerous bands undertaking this challenge at the moment, but French Gothic Metal band Unseelie really stand out.

With an EP (Unholy Light) under their belts and a desire to release their debut album, Urban Fantasy, the band are undertaking an IndieGoGo campaign to help make their concept album come to life.  They are a fully DIY band pouring not only their heart and soul but also their own cash into this project.

Thursday, 15 May 2014

Extreme Thursday: Riverain

No bank holidays this week mean a long slog to Thursday. What better way to make up for the rare five-day May week than to fill it with metal? This week we mix up our extreme metal with, well, a whole bunch of stuff. You'll see.

Riverain are a Russian band started in 2003 by vocalist Anastasia Ligotskaya. A five piece melodeath band, including guitarists Arthur Naumenko and Daniel Seriy, bassist Maxim Efimov and drummer Alexander Horoshevskiy.

Although the band's sound is primarily melodic death metal there are a lot of other styles thrown in, including gothic, electronic and progressive rock. Anastasia's vocal diversity is put to full use, including growls, screams, cleans and even incorporating synths.

Despite being around for over ten years, Riverain haven't really been active in the recording studio. They spent the first six years of their existence gigging and touring, making a name for themselves in their home region around the southern Russian town Anapa, on the coast of the Black Sea.

Tuesday, 13 May 2014

INTERVIEW: Caelestis

Caelestis - an Italian alternative metal band formed in 2010, who have grown and evolved from an ambient/new age solo project into a fully fledged metal band.  Distinctive in sound and image, the blue ones are forging ahead supporting their 2013 EP release Helicardio and their single Io E Te Siamo La Luna as well as working on new material and an exciting collaboration.

Currently the band are made up of Cataldo Cappiello (Songwriting, Guitars), Vera Clinco (Vocals), Piero Avitabile (Keys) and Fabiana Figurati (Bass).

Founding member Cataldo Cappiello and lead singer Vera Clinco kindly agreed to answer a collection of random and rambling questions from yours truly about their past, their music, their EP, their passions and of course what the future holds for this young, vibrant and passionate group.

Sunday, 11 May 2014

Dames Of Darkness: The Morning After ...

So that was Dames Of Darkness 2014! What a day. The bands were fantastic, the venue was brilliant and the car parking was convenient. While we're spending a day recovering (and catching up with Eurovision), have a look at the photos we took with and of the singers and bands to get a feel of the experience! The full photo album is available on the photos page.

With Divided We Fall With Karolina Pacan
from Skeptical Minds 
With Maxi Nil
from Jaded Star
With Dianne van Giersbergen
from Xandria

Friday, 9 May 2014

Edenfall release Under Sultry Moons and Velvet Skies - May 2014

British gothic doom metal band Edenfall are just a few days away from releasing their second full-length album Under Sultry Moons and Velvet Skies.  Since releasing their first album, Forever Fallen in 2011 the band have added to their line-up, spent some time touring and signed with independent record label RavenHeart Music.

Under Sultry Moons and Velvet Skies features 10 tracks:
01. The Rhinemaiden’s Song

02. Thistle’s Cairn

03. Obsidian

04. Dark Wings, Dark Words

05. Wolves

06. Made of Mist

07. The Wyvern Child

08. Escaping

09. Wandering Moon

10. She Brings the Winter

Thursday, 8 May 2014

Extreme Thursday: Noumena

Do you know who knows how to make the most of Thursday? The Finns. Able to make misery out of anything, the musical output of an entire nation could be the soundtrack to any Extreme Thursday.

This week's Finns of choice are melodeath outfit Noumena. Fitting well with the template of their fellow countrymen Insomnium and Omnium Gatherum, Noumena produce a variety of melodeath dripping in anguish and despair while still having catchy lead melodies, great riffs and a beat to keep your toes tapping. Dancing with tears in my eyes, indeed.

Wednesday, 7 May 2014

Divided We Fall release new album in time for Dames of Darkness - May 2014

Symphonic metallers Divided We Fall are releasing their debut album Dream Crusher on the 10th May 2014.

Originating from Stafford, UK, the band released a 3-track EP in 2012 and have been working on new material for the album hoping to have it ready for The Dames of Darkness Festival. After much success the album is going to be available to buy from the band at the festival on the 10th May.

The new album consists of ten tracks all written, recorded, produced and mixed by the band. The artwork for the album was provided by iGreeny Designs and one of the tracks features the vocals of Melissa Adams of Operatic Metal band Aonia.

Sunday, 4 May 2014

Die so Fluid to release The Opposites Of Light - May 2014

Die So Fluid are a 3-piece English hard rock band that formed in London, England in 2000. Members include songwriter Grog (vocals, bass), Drew Richards (guitar), and Al Fletcher (drums, backing vocals).

The band have released 3 full length albums to date - Spawn of Dysfunction, Not Everybody Gets a Happy Ending and The World Is Too Big For One Lifetime.

On 5th May, they release The Opposites of Light, their first full-length album for 4 years.

Friday, 2 May 2014

Sixth album release for Epica - The Quantum Enigma - May 2014

Epica are to release their next album, The Quantum Enigma in the UK on 5th May with Nuclear Blast. It is their first studio album with new bassist Rob van der Loo, who replaced Yves Huts in 2012 .  As the followup to 2012 Requiem for the Indifferent, the album promises to bring us another dose of classic Epica.

There are 13 tracks on the album:
1 - Originem
2 - The Second Stone
3 - The Essence of Silence
4 - Victims of Contingency
5 - Sense Without Sanity - The Impervious Code
6 - Unchain Utopia
7 - The Fifth Guardian - Interlude
8 - Chemical Insomnia
9 - Reverence - Living in the Heart
10 - Omen - The Ghoulish Malady
11 - Canvas of Life
12 - Natural Corruption
13 - The Quantum Enigma - Kingdom of Heaven part II

Thursday, 1 May 2014

Extreme Thursday: Darkestrah

Now the festivities of Ēostre are over, the bunny is back in his cage, and our little Spring break is done, it's time to get back to business. The business of bringing a little extremity to your Thursday

This week we have Darkestrah, a band who originate far from the usual glut of major metal producing nations. Instead they hail from the small nation of Kyrgyzstan in central Asia, where they produce a variant of melodic black metal that they refer to as "Shamanic pagan black metal."

The band draw their influences from the pre-Islamic history of their nation, from way back in the early 7th century and before. Using traditional instruments as well as traditional themes they forge their own style. The vocal talents of the enigmatic Kriegtalith combine with throat singing (the art of singing multiple tones simultaneously) and ancient Kyrgyz instruments such as the kyl-kyjak (a two string fiddle) and the temir-komuz (a Kyrgyz jaw harp) makes for an interesting mix of Kyrgyz folk in the midst of the traditional blackened metal sound.