Los Angeles-based metallers WHITE WIZZARD recently announced The Devil’s Cut as the title of their new album, to be released later this year via Earache Records in Europe and via Century Media/Earache in North America.
The band have posted a new video from the studio where they are recording the album. The studio video features clips of the band recording, as well as a track-by-track breakdown from bassist and main man Jon Leon. Watch below:
White Wizzard are once again working with producer Ralph Patlan (MEGADETH, UFO, MICHAEL SCHENKER) at Phase Four Studios in Tempe, Arizona. The Devil’s Cut is the band’s third full-length album and their first to feature new vocalist Joseph Michael. The band released a demo in 2012. One of the new tracks, ‘Torpedo Of Truth’, was the band’s first recording to feature the new vocalist. Listen to the track below:
Scion A/V Metal presented a label showcase for Earache Records at The Glass House in Pomona, CA on Saturday January 12th, featuring performances from OCEANO, VEKTOR, BONDED BY BLOOD and White Wizzard.
Footage of White Wizzard performing ’40 Deuces’ can be seen below:
More on White Wizzard at this location.
Music Review: Enforcer
CD: Death By Fire
Label: Nuclear Blast
I have always been a fan of the early New Wave Of Heavy Metal (NWOBHM) sound which was so instrumental in spearheading the surge in heavy metal popularity in the early to mid-80’s before you had the mega successful bands finally able to be financed by mega record labels and placed inside recording studios to give them a ultra polished production sound to help them sell a million copies of their record.
As the metal scene/sound evolved during the 80’s and beyond I noticed that the bands tended sound more and more removed in their recording due to the production of their albums which to me sometimes would make the band’s sound seem sterile and detached sometimes. I also understand time marches on but sometimes at the cost of losing that something special that once made the band great. I once read where Tom G. Warrior once stated that when he first heard the sounds of early Metallica and the American Thrash bands of the mid-80’s it was so different from the European bands of the time. He said the European bands sounded more like pub bands in their studio sound and the American bands had a more of a clinical sound. Though those early thrash bands still had that special warm sound and not the polished sound we hear today. But that old sound was a sound that helped us identify with those bands and feel we were a part of what they were doing.
Now that we live in a age where more people are able to have bands, record their music and be more creative without the pressure of a record label CEO telling a band how to sound, we are beginning to see bands go to a more stripped down form of recording their mixes and leaving the raw aggression and youth sound in their music.
This brings us to the Swedish band Enforcer. Enforcer has taken up the torch of the old NWOBHM sound and applied it to their sound, image, lyrics and style. And all I can say is what a breath of fresh air it is. From start to bottom of their album “Death by Fire” you have classic early 80’s metal in the youthful high ranges vocals, the intimate, warm, sound of the old school way of recording their songs, the twin guitars, and the catchy choruses.
Songs like ‘Death Rides The Night’ is pure NWOBHM as is the instrumental ‘Crystal Suite’ which will make you think you are listening to old Iron Maiden…as in Maiden’s debut album/Killers old. Here you will hear a style all in the form of those old bands from the early 80’s. Bands like Angel Witch, Praying Mantis, Exciter, Venom, Diamond Head and early Iron Maiden are all obvious influences here.
This album reminds of a time when if you were a kid in the 80’s you would buy a record and sit in your room, that was filled with posters of metal bands (and scantly glad women), for hours listening to the album on your record player as you look over the albums artwork and photos of the band just to know more about them.
I really can’t get enough of the sound on this album and just the raw enthusiasm of the songs, and the songs themselves are really great with catchy hooks and excellent guitar work.
I don’t think Enforcer is an aberration either. You have bands like Skullfist, White Wizzard, Holy Grail, Lost Society and a slew of other younger bands who are trying to go after this sound. I feel this is a telling sign that our youth of today, no longer influenced either by MTV or radio, who is wanting to strip away the clean image and glitter that, pervades our pop music and even some our metal scene of today and just ROCK and be rebellious. A sound that makes you feel as if you are THERE.
Go out and get Enforcer’s ‘Death By Fire’ and experience the resurgence of what helped make Heavy Metal great to begin with.
- Olof Wikstrand
- Jonas Wikstrand
- Joseph Tholl
- Tobias Lindqvist
Death By Fire Tracklisting:
01. Bells Of Hades
02. Death Rides This Night
03. Run For Your Life
04. Mesmerized By Fire
05. Take Me Out Of This Nightmare
06. Crystal Suite
08. Silent Hour / The Conjugation
Music Review: Midnite Hellion
Enter the Unknown EP
I recently was contacted by a band called Midnite Hellion hailing from Trenton, New Jersey asking me if I would mind reviewing their ep Enter the Unknown. Well of course I don’t mind. If I did I wouldn’t be a music reviewer now would I?
After reviewing Zamboni’s ep Sucks! The Stupid Ep I was unsure what I was going to get out of Jersey these days…after all it is the home of Aqua Teen Hunger Force and we all know how ef’ed up that is…and how metal it is too. So should you Enter the Unknown with Midnite Hellion or be a grammar Nazi and autocorrect their name right now? Read on!
What kind of band do we have with Midnite Hellion? Is it a retro band? Is it a talented band? Is it a band on the verge of something special? Well the answers to these questions are a traditional metal band that has good solid talent that with a little more time and experience could be a band that makes a name for themselves.
Midnite Hellion is at its core a New Wave of British Heavy Metal Band which, with bands like Holy Grail, White Wizzard, Enforcer and Skullfist and some others seem to be making some sort of comeback.
Midnight Hellion’s sound has catchy melodies, the old school sound but with a bit of modern touches in their production and a vocalist that goes between midrange growls to trying to hit the high end notes. You have two guitarists that you will hear compliment off each other at times and songs that talk about supernatural and horror elements that some of those old NWOBHM bands would sing about.
I think Midnite Hellion have the core ingredients to maybe get them signed to a label with a few caveats. The first is the vocalist. The first song on the EP is 1903. In nearly the whole song he seems to be trying to sing out of his range and it really took me out of the song. However, the other 3 songs on the Ep he reverts to a more mid-range growl vocal style which I thought sounded amazing and helped the songs really hit and I thought he complimented the songs really well when he did this. He would also revert back to trying to sing high like the old NWOBHM bands would, like Praying Mantis, and it just did not work. I’m not saying this to bash the singer anyway.
Being a singer is tough, and he may mature into singing in the high range more effectively as time goes on and I can even see where such a style would sound good in the song if implemented properly. Can anyone remember what James Hetfield sounded like on those first Metallica albums? Yeah. So anything is possible.
As of right now though, I think when he sang in the mid range areas the songs were so much stronger and he reminded me a bit of Armored Saint’s John Bush. If he can get the high range vocals down then we might have a force to reckon with here.
The only other thing is I wish the songs had a bit more “PUNCH” to their sound but overall we have good song compositions and I think with a little more time Midnite Hellion can mature and find a niche for themselves. Which I hope they do. I’m really interested to see what a few more years together can produce from these guys as I think they can break through and get a deal.
Keep it rocking guys.
Bands Official Homepage:
Listen to the songs here: