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Webzine dedicated to the metal band fronted by girls. We also like ambient,darkwave,rock & electronic music.
Coming from an “artistic” family as Anne states : “my mom was a theater major in college and a director and my dad has written a novel”, her project Upon Wings debuts with the EP “Afterlife” that features the “guest vocalist Brett Hestla (ex-Creed, Dark New Day), master Grammy-nominated mixing engineer Glenn Brown (Kid Rock‘s recording engineer) and guitar work and production from Canadian-based Kevin Jardine”. “When it comes to writing songs and creating a theme with the lyrics, I have to write what is true to me and whatever I’m experiencing at the time”, so Anne it’s a true artist that tries to fullfil her dreams [and maybe he achieved this mission].
(@alabama_shakes) Only the fact that former The White Stripes “Jack White has chosen them as support” would be a reason to check this awesome debut by US Rock/Black/Blues band Alabama Shakes called “Boys & Girls”. But let’s do step back and have them properly introduced: Alabama Shakes are coming from Athens, Alabama - precisely “from the South of United States of America where soul, blues were born many years ago”. In its line up is featured the singer Brittany Howard whose “voice is powerful and sensual, full of passion and suffering”. Luisa has attempted to compare Brittany’s voice to “Aretha Franklin or Janis Joplin” but our reviewer prefer to state that [Brittany] “has her own identity and it is correct to judge her for her own skills”. Wrapping up, “Their debut record “Boys & Girls” is built over a simple rock-blues without frills”.
That’s below another nice release for the industrial aficionados. Here below you can find the REVIEW of the third album “Chain Letters” (released via Alfa Matrix on 2011) by the US Neikka RPM- Just read a nice excerpt by Luisa : “The US-based industrial band Neikka RPM is back with its third release. “Chain Letters” is definetely an up-tempo record in which the industrial is mixed with club beats. The groove can be found in every second of it and the enigmatic vocals of Dominique make everything sexier”. Continue to read this TOP REVIEW (RATED 80 OUT OF 100) @ (via Neikka RPM – “Chain Letters” (2011) « Femme Metal Webzine)
Yesterday I promised to post you something big and here it comes. Our dear live reporter Jesse spent his New Year’s Eve in an unusual way and he has spent his Eve doing a long trip from Canada to the USA, precisely in Maryland to attend this SPECIAL gig of the rockers Halestorm, what is following here is a full-detailed REPORT inclusive of EXCLUSIVE PHOTOS. This live was SPECIAL because “The show was no ordinary concert, but rather a celebration of Halestorm’s past, present and future. The night was divided up into two sections: Light and Acoustic as well as Dark and Electric”. Are you dying to know more details? Well, simply click in the link below (via HALESTORM @ Baltimore Soundstage, Baltimore, Maryland, USA 31/12/2012 « Femme Metal Webzine)
Label : Vàn Records
Review by Luisa Mercier
After the highly praised debut “In Witch Order”, Castle are back after only a year with “Blacklands”. The vocalist Elizabeth was and still is impressive with her gloomy, raspy voice, perfect for this kind of music, but, of course it is the whole band that is really convincing. Without too many pretenses, the band managed to create some of the heavier doom metal out there. There are no embellishments in these riffs, which seem to get more fluid and encompassing as the album goes on; and Elizabeth not only contributes with vocals, but also with her powerful bass. Castle manages to draw a thin line between traditional and doom metal. The lyrics are smart texts about the dark sides of life, forcing the listeners to think about it. Definitely “Blacklands” is one of the best albumns released in contemporary doom metal, one which mixes old classics and more modern myths, so if you are a fan of the genre, please take a listen.
Rating - 70/100
Interview by Adam
For the benefit of those who don’t know, what is the story behind Beautiful Dark?
When I left Strict 9 Brian discovered we had many of the same musical tastes and decided we wanted to start a band incorporating many different styles of music. Brian tends to lean towards the industrial side, I come from a metal background. It just worked. We found our first drummer, David, while he and Brian were working at the same company. That’s how BD started.
Where did the name Beautiful Dark come from?
Brian was trying to discribe GOTH music to me, in terms. He called it Beautiful and Dark. There’s no beauty in the dark. Darkness being all encompassing. Also he says I’m the beautiful one, he’s the dark one. Primarily, Beautiful Dark is our baby. We also think the Dark is Beautiful….
Who would you regard as your influences?
Lauren : Wow. We’re very different! The Beatles, Enuff Z Nuff (yesssss they had lots more songs) Scorpions, Judas Priest, Iron Maiden, Simon and Garfunkle, Linda Rondstadt, Pink Floyd, Def Leppard, Jellyfish, Imperial Drag,Tony Iommi,Sacred Reich, Pat Benatar, Kate Bush, Yes, Flotsam and Jetsam, The Ramones, NIN, Faith no More, Dead or Alive, FF5, Ac/DC, DePeche Mode, The Cult, classsical, progressive and jazz, I won’t go on, I’m really varied.
Brian : Vince Clarke, Pink Floyd, Nick Rhodes, Tony Banks (Genesis), Rik Wakeman from Yes, Peter Gabriel, Van Halen, Def Leppard, Erasure, Yazoo, Baroque classical music, Trent Reznor, Bach & Mozart, and he says his imagination inspires him the most.
Given that you’ve re-invented yourself under a different name how important do you think it is for bands to keep sounding fresh?
Critical. Unless you want to stagnate, you have to grow with the music of the time. More than anything we never want our music to be boring or get into a groove where every song sounds the same. It gets to the point I’ve heard happen with too many artists they find a formula and stick with it. But all the songs sound alike. We never want that to happen and don’t think we will ever be a formula band. As far as “fresh” goes, we always make music that we want to listen to. Every song we do has been something we always wanted to hear.
What would you say makes Beautiful Dark different from other bands of a similar style?
Definitly our range. We love to surprise the audience. Hell, we might end up with a country song some day. When that day comes though, I quit. (laughter) We’re all different people with different musical styles. I think too often bands get boxed into a category and genre and can’t grow from that. What makes us unique, is no one can really categorize us. “Alone” is a ballad, yes, but most of our songs are really varied sounding.
On MySpace you state the intention to release songs on a number of different subjects, how many of them are relative to a prevailing mood or emotion?
Lyrically, ALL of them are about my journals. I write between 1-5 songs lyrically a day, whatever is going on in my life at the moment is what ends up on a song. Sometimes you gotta read between the lines though to figure out what it means to me. Brian: The music comes from not necessarily feelings I’m having at the time, but surely had felt in the past. I’m trying to make a statement musically, more than emotionally. If it effects someone else, great! The music for me does come from my heart mind and soul. It may sound corny…(laughs)
What can people expect from the forthcoming CD?
LOTS of surprises. A lot of emotion went into this cd. A lot of different textures musically on this one. We experimented with a lot of different sounds, just hearing the first mixes we’re very excited. It’s going to be a cd where every song is different! And of course it will contain a lot of Dark Beauty.
Where do you see Beautiful Dark being in about ten years time?
Brian : We want to be just as hungry and naive as the first track we ever put down.
Lauren : TOURING, making more music. Music that makes a difference if that is possible. It’s never been about money or conquering the world with us. Hopefully we effected someone with our music.
If you could open the show for any band in the world who would they be?
Nine Inch Nails, Hands Down, or the Beatles, but don’t think that is possible…sadly.
What first made you want to pick up a musical instrument?
Lauren : The Beatles! Most of the metal that was going on in the 80’s. I had a major musical upbringing and very varied musical styles by my mother. She inspired me a lot. My first instrument was an antique Autoharp. I still have it and still play. It will pop up on the CD if you listen closely! I picked up guitar at age 9 seriously and began taking lessons 2 days a week. I majored in music in college, but found reading music a wasn’t my forte’!
Brian : My mother, too. She had a piano when I was a kid and I used to play on it a lot, she could play to sheet music which I still can’t do (Laughs) I used to listen to records with her as a kid.
What would you say were the attractions of being involved in the music business?
It’s the hardest business in the world. I’m going to be honest. I don’t highly recommend it, I’ve lost a lot of musician friends over the years, I still worry about many, their hearts are broken because they never “made it” or almost did and lost it. This business is very finicky. One day you’re the biggest band in the world playing to sold out audiences, the next to a bar with 4 people in Topeka, Kansas. The only attractions we can think of is having our music reaching the masses. Trying to send them all a message through the music. To change the world one person at a time. That would be cool. There’s just too many sad rock n roll storys out there.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to follow in your footsteps and establish a band?
Brian : You need to keep your MIND clear. This sounds corny, be true to yourself, don’t be a FAKER or copycat. Try your hardest to get your music and creations out there.
Lauren : Have a stable life and be realistic. Don’t get caught up in being a ROCKSTAR. Also, never SETTLE.
Female fronted metal bands such as Within Temptation and Nightwish seem to have been on the increase over the past few years, how do you see them as fitting into an industry which was before this more often than not the all-male territory of bands such as Iron Maiden and Black Sabbath?
Good Question! The industry has finally woken up and discovered that girls can rock just as much and sometimes better than guys. A female led band should be a bonus. You get the fans from both male and female. The girls want to be her, the guys want to be with her. Why shouldn’t a female led band be just a good as a male led band? It’s been a long time over due. Back when I grew up we had Pat Benetar, Lita Ford, Chrissy Hynde, Girlschool and Joan Jett. That was pretty much it. I couldn’t get in a band to save my life in the 80’s or 90’s because of the way I look and the simple fact that I am female…..I finally can be accepted now.
If you were to write your autobiography what would it be called?
Lauren : And Chaos always ensues (or….My life in the rock n roll twilight zone) I am working on another book eventually. I have 2 that are finished, that I will publish in the next year.
What was the last film you watched?
Lauren : “Even Almighty”
Brian : “Grindhouse”
Do you have any final messages for your fans?
The best is yet to come!!! Buy the CD next year! See us on tour Spring/Summer in Europe! And thank you for everything, you guys are the best!!!!!!!!
Review by Tony Cannella
From Chicago, Illinois, the band Solarsphere plays melodic symphonic metal, adding a touch of other influences here-and-there to create their debut 3-song demo. Solarsphere is led by vocalist Rachel Sabine. She has got a beautiful, melodic slightly operatic style to her voice. “Eternal Hunter” opens the CD. This is a good start and my favorite of the 3-songs. Starting off with drums, bass and Rachel’s vocals, the song slowly builds as a rock solid guitar riff joins in. This song has loads of atmosphere (thanks in part to the haunting keyboard arrangement) and a simply addicting melody. “Eternal Hunter” is a Beautiful start to the 13-minute demo. Next is “Sick Pleasure” and it is really not too different stylistically than the previous song. Rachel’s voice sounds great and the song is perhaps a bit heavier, but if you liked the first song, than “Sick Pleasure” does nothing to bring the quality down. The final song, “Inner Demons” is perhaps my least favorite song, but it still packs quite a punch and is the heaviest thing on here. On their debut demo, Solarsphere plays symphonic metal with all the conviction of a veteran band. This is a positive step in the right direction for this young Chicago band.
Rating - 78/100
Review by Tony Cannella
From California come the Gothic, Progressive Metallists Phavian. The band formed in 2005 and in 2009, they released their debut album “Kiena”. Their new EP is out now and goes by the title of “Foreword” and although I never actually heard their debut – thus, I have nothing to compare this to – I like what I have heard throughout the 33-minutes worth of playing time on “Foreword”, it makes me curious about their earlier material. The EP opens with “Feldgrau”. This is a pretty good, thumping opener and one that highlights the top notch musicianship – particular Elizabeth Matson’s strong vocals – that Phavian is capable of. Next is the intricate and epic 12-minute “Watersong”. This is a great progressive rock track that offers the listener some twists and turns; tempo, mood and style changes and definitely keeps the listener on their toes. This also is my favorite track. Despite clocking in at 12-minutes long, it never gets boring and is just an all around testament to the bands talent as musicians and songwriters. After the musical gymnastics of the previous tune the next one “Green Iris” gets back to basics before the final track “Acolyte” shows the band returning to their epic style, by closing things out with this monster 10-minute number. Phavian is planning to unleash their 2nd full-length album called “Meridian I” in the not too distant future. Until that happens, “Foreword” would be a pretty good starting point to becoming familiar with this band. If you feel like you want to check out this interesting band, the EP is available for free download at their official web site.
Rating - 85/100
Review by Tony Cannella
From New Jersey comes the Symphonic Goth Metal trio Luminis. Luminis began as a Symphonic Metal tribute band, playing songs from their favorite bands of the genre before embarking on their current path of writing and performing original material. Their initial work is called “From Within” and features a playing time of 4-songs, 21-minutes. Their sound is melancholic, moody music with symphonic elements and the operatic at times vocals of Tara. Piano signals the opening of the laid back first track “Into My Sin”. This has a mournful, somber quality to it. “Nightfall Child” begins with piano once again and has a slower tempo to begin things and follows the same musical path as the previous song. The songs are mostly taking on a down tempo pace, and I don’t think anyone would say that this is happy sounding music; still it is obvious that the band put a lot of their heart and souls into the crafting of these songs. The 3rd track “Falling Away From Me” begins with an acoustic guitar and orchestral opening which pretty much dominates throughout the duration of this ballad, which has a sad quality to it. The final song, “The Other Side of the Mirror”, is one of the heavier tracks featured here and quickly became my favorite, thanks to some excellent vocal work by Tara, changes in tempo and a cool choir-like chorus. For a first try, Luminis has delivered a pretty good introduction with “From Within”. The band could probably be helped with a better production, but despite the weak production, the quality of the music shines through.
Rating - 72/100
Label : Relapse Records
Review by Tony Cannella
When it comes to music, I am very much a child of the 80s. That is when I first discovered my love for all things metal and when I got my musical education, not that it matters much. I still love metal, but reserve a special place in my heart to any band whose style harkens back to that glorious time in metal. The second album from Washington’s Christian Mistress (titled “Possession”), definitely piqued my interest for this reason. Now, nostalgia can only take you so far, and realizing this is now 2012 you have to bring something current and relevant to the table and that is exactly what Christian Mistress does on “Possession”. Sure there is no lack of 80s-isms, but “Possession” also possesses (no pun intended, okay maybe a little bit) all the fire and energy of any band that has emerged in recent history. I don’t know why but I always associate the label Relapse with Death and Metal Core bands so that is half what I was expecting when played the “Possession” album. From the frenzied thrash-like opening of “Over & Over” I knew I was wrong and was instantly captivated by the sound emanating from my speakers. Christian Mistress mixes thrash, traditional heavy metal and NWOBHM influences throughout the course of “Possession”. Songs like “Cross and Crucifix”, “Conviction” and “The Way Beyond” are fine examples of this, whilst the song “Possession” has a definite early Black Sabbath vibe with the opening guitar riff and doomy feeling. The opening riff to “Black to Gold” had a definite Paul Di’Anno era Iron Maiden vibe to it, and it is also one of the main highlights for me. “There Is Nowhere” gives the listener a chance to catch their breath at the beginning and is the closest thing to a ballad on “Possession”. It does have its heavy parts and the song changes tempo several times before speeding up and bringing the song to a frantic conclusion. So, all I can say it that any preconceive notions I might have had were put aside after listening to this 41-minute slice of pure metal heaven. Sure it’s not perfect but Christian Mistress is a band that would sound good in any decade, and “Possession” sure isn’t lacking of vitality and power.
Rating - 90/100