CD- Reviews


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♥ = ok, for fans
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♥ = don't miss it, it's great
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The Coma Cluster – Observation
♥ ♥ ♥


Audio CD

Tracklist
01. Flow
02. Galdur
03. Cro Magnon 1
04. Fear
05. Conflict
06. Initial Protection
07. CC21
08. Come Down
09. Flawed Reality
10. Bambaló

Quote: “The Coma Cluster is a concept developed by the Icelandic artist Hallvadur Ásgeirsson and Siffvilnus, together with others scattered over several countries and continents, they’ve sculpted a vision from sound where we see a glimpse of our world from another point of view.”

So far, this is what the artist‘s page tells us about “The Coma Cluster”. And they are totally right. “Observation” works with lots and lots of sphere sounds that creates it’s basic. The whole album seems more like a journey through another world than a CD.

The album starts with a quite long intro, made of disharmonic synthesizer-sounds, raising guitars and a whispering voice. “Flow” is a very good start into the longplayer because you get a very good impression of what will follow. “Cro Magnon” works with a female voice that sounds like telling a mysterious story and by the same time a warning. The song itself is very heavy but with lying synthie-sounds it gives it also a print of flying. Really great work! “CC21” seems like a real rock-song and the only one in this style. It’s got pushing drums, clear guitar-riffs and hard synthies. The song “Flawed Reality” is only working with synthie-layers, a voice that pierces marrow and bones and a clean guitar. The last song “Bambaló” gets the heart of the whole album – sounds from another world.

All in all the songs doesn’t differ that much on that album but this is really not a bad point. The album starts with a slight number, rises into hard and heavy sounds and ends with a song that includes everything before. The whole time you will be on a journey with different stations and discoveries. Of course this album is not for everybody, especially not for those who really like to headbang or those who like catchy guitar-solos. It’s for those who just want to listen and wanna get lost in an experimental kind of music.

www.comacluster.net

Sound advice: Galdur, CC21, Bambaló

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Killer Aspect – How does it work?
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥





Audio CD 2008
Sonic Kitchen & Oy Bonnier Amigo Music Finland Ab

» You're the one who gets shot down – I'm blowing into pieces «

Tracklist

1.    TV
2.    Bloodshot
3.    How does it work
4.    Losers
5.    Rock 'n' Roll
6.    Plush
7.    Kissing Goodbye
8.    Bonfire
9.    Skyscraper
10.    Beautiful Morning
11.    Fragile
12.    Fireworks
13.    Best Of Debido


'How does it work?', the 2008 full-length debut of Killer Aspect -raising from South East Finland's Kotka- is, matter-of-factly, typically untypical Finnish.

Imagine 30 Seconds To Mars meet Lost Prophets, mixed with a good sense of Foo Fighters and all well shaken with a little bit of Fall Out Boy. That's the recipe to get a Killer (Aspect) sound!

The record blows off with 12 fresh, American styled alternative rock songs and ends with the beautiful ballad Best of Debido even Jared Leto would be jealous of. 'How does it work?' is like listening to a soundtrack with a happy ending.
Their American influenced rock music sounds alike other Finnish bands like i.e. Sunrise Avenue but even here they won't completely fit into the category and they surely won't hum you a lullaby either!

All in all it's well produced rock music, made by talented musicians. It easily fits into every mood, giving you at least one song for each day to listen to.
Certainly, they didn't invent a new sound and it may not be original either, but they definitely do better!

Killer Aspect will represent Finland from another, less melancholic and dark side that has actually been long overdue. Sit down and find out how it works...



Must listen: How does it work, Best of Debido, Kissing Goodbye
For fans of: 30 Seconds To Mars, Last Prophets, Foo Fighters, Sunrise Avenue





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The 69 Eyes- Back in Blood
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥


Audio CD 2009
Lable: Virgin Records / EMI


1.Back In Blood
2.We Own The Night
3.Dead'n'Gone
4.The Good, The Bad & The Undead
5.Kiss Me Undead
6.Lips Of Blood
7.Dead Girls Are Easy
8.Night Watch
9.Some Kind Of Magick
10.Hunger
11.Suspiria Snow White
12.Eternal

After 2 years of waiting for new input the goth-rockers from Helsinki finally blessed us with new tunes!
Already the opener and title track "Back In Blood" shows that it's no shallow girlie-rock!! This band has come back with full forth! Less doomy then the previous album "Angels",  that's the music I wann hear when I'm up to make the night become day!! With rougher voice and very present guitars this is rock at it's best!!
One must also say that they got more back to the roots, for example concerning the intros, a huge variety , lots of different effects, remembers me a lot of the good old days!
"We Own The Night" and "The Good, The Bad And The Undead" come up with a great
chorus to sing along with which makes it perfect for live performances.
The more melodic "Dead And Gone" and "Lips Of Blood" could be right out of a road movie soundtrack which shows the influence the states have on this band. Some like it others want them to get back to the finnish basics. . .
"Kiss Me Undead" caught my attention right away. . if  I had to do a lab dance I'd probably choose that song! Even the faster part of the song stays "hot and sensual". . .

"Dead Girls Are Easy" could also be a track from "Angels" thow this is not supposed to be understood in a negative way! Another perfect live song and a wise choice for the first single!

What offends me a bit is "Night Watch". . it sounds too much like another finnish band with a very famous and outstanding singer. . .it's not what I expect from the 69Eyes.

Thanks to "Some Kind Of Magick" I forgot this idea quite fast again. Typical Eyes chorus without having a déja-vu!

The surprise of the album is for me "Hunger". When you read the title you expect something different than what you get! Powerful and melodic song where Jyrki does a bit more the usual dark timbre!
"Suspiria Snow White" is, as one of the faster tunes, adapted to all the gothic girls who want to shake their booty to the music of their favourite band!
As conclusion we get the classic/acoustic "Eternal" . Live this could bring up some tears. . without being boy group like of course ;-)
Simply beautiful!
The contents of the songs are all about girls, love, blood and life! One doesn't have to be a big philosopher to write great songs, write down what your heart tells you, mix it with good finnish rock and a nice amount of vampiric inspiration and what you get is The 69Eyes!!
Matt Hyde has had a good influence on their new creation and from my point of view the high expectations got satisfied!



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CD Review: MÖTLEY CRÜE – Saints of Los Angeles 
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥


Audio CD 2009
Lable: Elektra


We'll leave a scar – won't give a damn
- - - -

Mötley Crüe. Back in the business!
After eight long years the waiting finally came to an end. Mötley Crüe are back! Better than before and it's the first record release to feature the classic line-up since 'Generation Swine'. Sixx notes that “the album is loosely based on 'The Dirt'. Each song is like a mini-story and you can plug in into the book. Some of it's funny, some of it's serious and in-your-face. It's like a typical, successful Mötley Crüe record!” -I couldn't argue on that. Hear it. Love it.
Go down in flames and pray to 'The Saints of Los Angeles'!


Tracklist

1.    L.A.M.F.
2.    Face down in the dirt
3.    What's it gonna take
4.    Down at the Whiskey
5.    Saints of Los Angeles
6.    Motherfucker of the year
7.    The animal in me
8.    Welcome to the machine
9.    Just another psycho
10.    Chicks=Trouble
11.    This ain't a love song
12.    White Trash Circus
13.    Going out swinging


L.A.M.F. -the opening track welcomes you with Mick's guitars, solemn whispers and announcements. A typical Mötley welcoming; we're all invited to visit the Crüe in Los Angeles. Are you ready for the ride?!

Then come along... 'Face down in the dirt' won't be easy, it won't let you think long enough whether you want to join the ride or not! Be prepared to get dirty, don't be afraid of bullets -enjoy the song, listen to the lyrics! Tommy is at it's best and so is Mick, but Nikki and Vince won't have to hide either. A typical Mötley song, catchy from the very first tunes -you can't stop going with the beat.

'What's it gonna take' -everything and nothing! Mick's picking you up and takes you on yet another ride down the Sunset Strip, along with Tommy and Vince. Shortly after Nikki's joining and speeds up the ride... see for yourself what's it gonna take. Listen carefully to Mick's solo in the middle of the song -rock at its best!

Let's go 'down at the Whiskey'... where it all began, back to the roots so to say! This song comes along very easy and is probably one of the best songs of this album. It's in the typical style of the old Mötley -it's like a shotgun, bringing you back to the 80's and letting you wish to be at the Whiskey for another rocked out night with the Crüe! Fantastic!

The title song of the album. 'Saints of Los Angeles'... featuring Chris Taylor Brown, Michael James, Jacoby Shaddix and Josh Todd. Another masterpiece! Starting with subtle whispers, followed by heavy guitars and drums and roaring vocals! Let's follow their say and “pray to the Saints of Los Angeles” -it's a fine mixture of the old Mötley with a very 21st centurian attitude...

'MF of the year' practically describes Mötley in their own words. Wonderful, catchy. It's the second single of this record to be released, without a doubt a good choice. Get hooked on Mick's guitar play and Sixx's lyrics!

The next song is one of the slower tracks, but yet another masterpiece! The lyrics are outstanding... the musical arrangement let's you feel the song with every part of your body. “It feels like thunder... it's an ache that never heals... it's the darker side of lust... I wanna feel your last breath...” -no need to say more! Find your own animal in you.

After some rather calm tunes we won't get a rest, it continues without a break, without looking back! “...listen to the show...” -do it, don't hesitate, feel it! Rock with them the machine!

Don't we all inherit a little psycho deep inside of us?! Of course we do. Listen to the voice inside your head and be sure -it's Vince, telling you he's also 'Just another psycho'! It's another typically Mötley-like rock song, that will keep you rocking from the very first minute and has, yet another great solo by Mick!

The next song must be Sixx's favourite! 'Chicks = Trouble' -his very own opinion ever since the 80's... what true words, huh?! But that shouldn't offend you, rock with it! It's one of the 'harder' songs, it's gonna rock your socks off. Along Nikki himself James Michael and Dj Ashba were involved in this song, perfect mixture!

'This ain't a love song' -no, it's surely not! But I wouldn't say it's a fuck song either -it's rather a pure rock song with astonishing rhythm and yet another of Mick's wonderful solos. Nikki, Tommy and Vince are at their best as well... wanna have tonight? Don't sing along, just rock it!

The third single release, voted by fans on SOLA.  A worthy third release... rocking, relentless, full of power. Pure rock and roll!

The last song on 'Saints of Los Angeles' let's us rock out once more before the ride ends! The title says it all.. let's 'go out swinging' and rock the night away. Forget all your sorrows and just let loose! The guitars couldn't be any better, Sixx wrote yet another milestone of Mötley Crüe's history!

******

Saints of Los Angeles is yet another masterpiece of rock 'n' roll history written by Sixx and his 'little' helpers! Despite their 8-years-long break Mötley Crüe didn't lose an inch of their pure rock energy and will set you on fire with probably 13 of their, again, better songs... you couldn't always distinguish whether it's a new song or an old 80's song, back from their glory days!


Sound advice: Down at the whiskey, The animal in me, Just another psycho, Motherfucker of the year


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IAMX - KINGDOM OF WELCOME ADDICTION
♥ ♥ ♥


   
Audio CD 2009
Lable: Nineteen95 (Soulfood Music)

Tracklist:
1. Nature of inviting 
2. Kingdom of welcome addiction 
3. Tear garden 
4. My secret friend 
5. An I for An I 
6. I am terrified 
7. Think of England  
8. The stupid, the proud 
9. You can be happy  
10. The great shipwreck of life 
11. Running 

Released earlier this year this 3rd album by Chris Corner´s project IAMX is another prove of this artist´s uniqueness! All 3 albums clearly distinguish themselves from eachother but one can´t miss the thick red line that connects them! IAMX is not just a project of Chris Corner, it`s a style of it`s own!
“Nature Of Inviting” the starter of  the album makes you wanna shake your hips right from the beginning and combined with the chorus that “invites” you to sing along it`s the perfect song to be played live.
The title track “Kingdom Of  Welcome Addiction”intensifies from a minimalistic piano part to the typical IAMX sound. Melodic and strong at once it becomes the hymn of the album and naturally the lyrics also add their part to this fact!
“Tear Garden” is very rhythmic with capturing words. . it becomes a catchy tune faster than you can turn up the volume!
“My Secret Friend” featuring Imogen Heap is one of the highlights of the album, if not even THE highlight! The perfect fusion between Chris` and Imogen´s voice, the amazingly clear and “lovely” sounds make you float away with the song!
My first thought when I heard “An I For An I” was “Holy Shit!!” This song is a real burner, waking you up! Chris shows us the power of his voice with a slightly aggressive touch! “If you´re not with us you´re against” well I´m convinced that this song will “recrute” more new fans that are “with them”!!
“I Am Terrified” is one of the more touching songs, the lullaby type of music, the captivating words make the song organic, one has the impression that Chris speaks to us right out of his soul. . .it leaves you behind a bit more vunerable than before. . .
The first single “Think Of England”should make the last doubters fall for IAMX. From the musical point of view it creates a connection between the 2 predecessors (Kiss And Swallow/The Alternative). And once more we get a glimpse into what´s going on in this brilliant man`s mind. . . . It was from my point of view the perfect choice for a first single!
“The Stupid, The Proud” has a bloomy intro and lyrics that hit you! It shows the energy and potential that lies within IAMX. The song makes you switch on your brain and stays there for quite a while. . .
The fallowing song is a perfect example for what makes the difference between mainstream stuff and “pearls” like IAMX. “You Can Be Happy” is pure songwriter quality!
“The Great Shipwreck Of Life” is guided into the right direction by a strong drum-line, the slight distortion of the vocals makes it my highlight nr 2 . “I´ll be Peter Pan and you just be pretty” ; so individual but also directly out of life.
The last goody on this album has the title “Running”. How could one describe this song?! Fragile, beautiful and touching. . .touchier than “I Am Terrified” it makes you want more and you`re a little bit sad that it was the last song.

This album shows that Chris Corner makes music out of love for it, you hear this in every single song. I had to listen to “Kingdom Of Welcome Addiction” several times before being completely into it, but it was the same with the 2 before. That´s what shows that this tunes have quality, it`s no flat music you´ll get to hear in the elevator or at the supermarket!!





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Silenzio (FIN)
- EP „Citizen Scar“

♥ ♥ ♥



Release Date: tba
Lable: Bullshit Productions

Silenzio is a four-piece rock/metal band from Helsinki, Finland, that was formed in 2005. The Ep is not published yet , waiting for a deal! The band published two Demos and a Promo Live- DVD before.

The Band:
JJ Ilvonen                                     -vocals (+composing, lyrics)

Heka Kainulainen                       -guitar (+composing)
Pexi Puhakka                               -bass
Andy Kuussalo                             -drums

Woundplay: Interesting, experimental-like start, which makes you curious to the following Record. Fast, hart, rock. Elements from gothic and death metal. Exciting combination of gripping accords and melody. Very good “dialogue” between haunting vocals and the guitar part, which are positively contrasting.   
Airbone: More direct entrance into the song as concerning the other three songs.For a change there is a vocal intro in stead of a guitar one. A song full of energy, which definitely spreads over to the crowd during live- gigs.
Taurus Emblem:Not only because of the hart guitar intro to be seen as a hart rock or metal song. Very appealing guitar solo at the end of the song.
Tidal Waves:     The calmer sound in the song’s beginning is nearly similar to a mystic rock ballad to drift suddenly into a hart death metal like song. Very interesting change between calm melody and aggressive-rock, which continues through the whole song. And of course a lot of interesting guitar parts.

All in all a brillant and well composed record done by a band which you should bear in your mind.


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The Rasmus (FIN) –  Black Roses
♥ ♥ ♥


Audio CD: 2008
Label: Vertigo Be (Universal)

Tracklist:

1.Living In A World Without You
2. Ten Black Roses
3. Ghost Of Love
4. Justify
5. Your Forgiveness
6. Run To You
7. You Got It Wrong
8. Lost And Lonely
9. The Fight
10. Dangerous Kind
11. Live Forever

Out of the shadows into the crowded clubs in Germany. The Rasmus are back, with some new material. Last autumn they released their eight studioalbum and we took a look on the new songs.

Lauri Ylönen, singer and songwriter of the band obviously holds on to his dark poems about love and pain. The opener „Living in a world without you“ gives us a good look into his heart. Singing about a lost love, Ylönen knows how to touch the listener.
„Ten Black Roses“, one of the uptempo numbers in good old finnisch manner, is a wonderful song about love and the fact that everything is possible when you're with somebody you love, though it might seem hopeless.
In genereal Black Roses sounds like Lauris Diary and one after another song makes the listener understand the singers sight of the world. Justify and Run To You, which beginning reminds of „30 Seconds To Mars' „Hunter“, are one of the slower numbers on the new album. They sound heavy and paint love in black.
Although this is already their eight album the band still knows, how to create fresh songs, without souding like the others. Certainly they still keep the old „Rasmus“-Sound but still it's nice to listen to every single song of them. You just don't get bored of their music.

Fact is, that once again The Rasmus did a great job to present their fans good rock music, mixed with emotional lyrics, deeply touching you.



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Manzana (FIN)– Babies Of The Revolution

♥ ♥ ♥



Audio CD: 2008
Label: Dynamic Arts Record

Tracklist
01. Wash My Sins Away
02. Panda Girl
03. Sweet Revenge
04. Near Death Experience
05. End Of The World
06. Fake
07. Nothing As Whole As A Broken Heart
08. World Is A Vampire
09. Cherry Pit

“Manzana” is a pop-metal band from Tampere, Finland. They play together since many years but they started the project called “Manzana” as a four-member-band in 2003. They worked on getting signed but it took until 2008, after releasing their debut album “Nothing As Whole As A Broken Heart” in 2007. Last year, their second album “Babies Of The Revolution” came out and was, as their first album, widely reviewed in Finland.

When I first read the expression „pop-metal“ I had no real idea what to expect. But at first listening, I was positively astonished. The album starts with the strong opener “Wash My Sins Away”, pushing hard with fast guitar-riffs and catchy vocals. From that point I had a vague idea, what pop-metal was like, because the next song “Panda Girl” is much smoother and if there wouldn’t be the distorted guitars in the background, it could be a “Disney Soundtrack”. So, it’s quite interesting to see how “Manzana” are creating this unusual sound.
The next tracks alternate between hard hymns (“Sweet Revenge”, “World Is A Vampire”, “Cherry Pit”), aggressive rock songs (“End Of The World”) and overwhelming electronic-element-ballads (“Near Death Experience”, “Fake”).
Although some songs are smoother than others, “Babies Of The Revolution” never loses it’s strain. Of course not every song is as strong as the other, while “End Of The World” is definitely the best and most pushing song, “Sweet Revenge” seems like a failed try of creating an interesting sound. A high compliment should be paid to singer Piritta Lumous. In some songs I wasn’t sure if I am listening to a guy now or if it’s still her and in other songs she uses her voice just as female as possible.
All in all it’s a very good album and live’s up to the expression “pop-metal”. If you are interested in the band, check out their homepage www.manzana.fi or visit their upcoming Germany / Finland – Tour in April.

Sound advice: Wash My Sins Away, End Of The World, Cherry Pit



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CD Review: WHITE FLAME – Yesterday's News 
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥




No Rock 'n ' Roll Hall of Fame
- - - -

Positively surprising is the debut record of the four piece from Finland's rock town -Tampere.
The 2004 released demo 'Reaching The Sky' already sounded pretty much promising but after all it was just the demo release and it was still kind of rough.
After changes within the band they quickly moved on and with the release of the first full length record the guys around Vince finally prove that they belong to Finland's rock elite.


Tracklist

1.    GUN
2.    The World We Live In
3.    Swimsuit Issue Centerfold
4.    RockHard
5.    MissU
6.    Down
7.    Your Joint Tonight
8.    Yesterday's News
9.    Hour of Emptiness
10.    Kill The Radio
11.    Close To Me
12.    My Future Ex-Girlfriend


The first track, GUN, sounds promising and with the first 30 seconds the track already keeps its promise.
With 'The World We Live In' it continues habitually rocking. It doesn't only convince with catchy guitar riffs, but also with a social critical text you should definitely pay attention to.

“This is the world we live in; not a fairytale – more like an endless nightmare!”

What true words?!

The fourth track – Swimsuit Issue Centerfold – goes another path to find its way to Rome. Having still the usual catchy rocking guitar riffs and a powerful voice, it now combines everything with a little trace of blues to mix it all together into one great and typical White Flame song!
'RockHard' sounds what it is. A rock hard song full of energy, being ruled by Anthon and Jony, perfectly accompanied by Vince's typical and unique rock voice.

After four rocking, uptempo songs the band now pursues a more silent and calm path. 'Miss U' is a wonderful rock ballad – it couldn't be any better. The listener will be totally fixed to Vince's voice telling a wonderful story about a lost love. The end is the reckoning – get lost in Anthon's solo playing!
'Down' is a well done, but yet simple midtempo song which is rather bassy but still makes you wanna rock out!
'Your Joint Tonight' gives a rocking insight into the guys life “on the road”. Stylistically confident they prove that there's nothing more important for a band than to play live and to be on the road.

The title track of the record – Yesterday's News – is an example par excellence of a traditional, straight forward rock song. Music and text together form one unit that couldn't be done any better! Unfortunately I can't decide which is the best: the text, Vince, the guitars, bass or the drums maybe!?

On 'Hour of Emptiness' Vince is coming along with a rather smoky voice which is, as usual, flourishing softer and more melodically for the chorus parts.
'Kill the radio' slowly kills you with expressive lyrics and catchy guitar riffs, accompanied by a solid bass and dashing drums!
The next song, Close To Me, is my very personal favourite! It's yet another ballad with catchy, sensitive lyrics and an absolutely fitting music. Vince's voice puts the final touch to the song – goosebumps guaranteed!

The final makes 'My future ex-girlfriend' – a rocking but rather a little on the short side song. It relentlessly gets even with all the women far from reality!

- - - -

All in all the guys from White Flame made a good start with their debut album! A rocking, yet little bluesy masterpiece of Finnish rock history!







For Selena And Sin (FIN) – Overdosed on You
♥ ♥ ♥



Audio CD: 2007
Label: Mascot Records

Tracklist:

01. Who’s Behind The Door?
02. Lost Like Dreamers Are
03. A Rain Tonight
04. Heal
05. Ghost In The Family
06. Jubileum Of My Sorrow
07. Satellites
08. Million Miles High
09. Draining
10. Happy New Year

The story of “For Selena And Sin” starts in 2004. After their demo “Draining” and a change of their former vocalist, the band released their debut album “Overdosed On You”. Their style can be described as melodic gothic-metal with a fondness for complex emotions. You’ll find joy and happiness but also sadness and despair while the catchy guitars chime together with a wide synthesizer-background.
From the beginning on, “Overdosed On You” convinces with harmonic vocals, also in the straight mid-tempo songs like the opener “Who’s Behind The Door?” or “A Rain Tonight”. A very surprising song is “Jubileum Of My Sorrow”. Here, the sound changes from smooth caressing vocals to an overwhelming refrain, who will definitely stuck in your head for some time.
But Annikas voice is also strong in the slow moments. The second song, “Lost Like Dreamers Are” is a dreamy ballad with emotional highs and lows. Interesting is the short Death-Grunt part, that makes the song very surprising. The only flaw is the position in the track list. It’s never a good place for a ballad as second number. It takes all the pressure and energy from the opener and that is a bit sad. “Ghosts In The Family” might make the listener’s flesh creep because of the great choral refrain and the ghostly samples. But also the other ballads (“Heal”, “Satellites”, “Draining”) will give the listener a rollercoaster-drive through different feeling like hard, thoughtfully, dark or just beautifully sad.

The albums end is an (almost) acoustic song “Happy New Year”. This track is definitely one of the albums highlights. It starts creating a dreamy atmosphere from the beginning on and establishes very slow the rest of the song and intensity of the instruments. This one got almost everything: acoustic guitar, a chime of bells, begging chords, mystic drums, keyboard-samples, guitar-solos and the one line “Happy New Year”, sung by Annika as this would be their last words. Just awesome.

The only song that is a tad too poppy is “Million Miles High” who seems to be filler or one of the member’s favourite song, who had to be put on the album.

All in all “Overdosed On You” is not only an album for fans. It’s very emotional, got its highs and lows and whets the listeners appetite. The songs are well arranged, especially for a debut album. So, if you’re a fan of dark romantic music, you should definitely listen to “For Selena And Sin”. For more information check out their page www.forselena.net where you can find their tourdates for Germany and Finland with Manzana, or  check out their MySpace www.myspace.com/forselenaandsin.

Sound advice: Who’s Behind The Door?, Jubileum Of My Sorrow, Draining, Happy New Year







Negative  (FIN)– In The Eye Of The Hurricane DVD (2008)
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥



Punctual at the end of the year, lots of bands release DVDs, this year also Negative was one of these bands. The disc „In The Eye Of The Hurrican“ is a double-DVD and shows their gig in Pakkahuone, Tampere, includes also lots of bonusmaterial.

Negative exists since 1997 and since 2002 we regularly get new sounds from them. With their newest release „Karma Killer“ the Finns got four longplayers on the markt and better that with this DVD. During the last years, the glam-rockers were gluts with gold and platin and also with their new work they did no mistake.

When you hold the DVD the first time in your hands and you browse through the chubby booklet, you know that it's not only an unkind recorded gig, you know that theres something behind it. This booklet includes lots of pictures and info about the past records, how they worked on it and why they did it. Then, with watching DVD number one, you see a really nice menu, in a circus-style.

The concert starts straightaway, no intro, no entrance of the band and that .unfortunately, takes a lot of atmosphere. They just start rocking. By the way, the gig is the last one on their tour, two years ago. So they guys have typical signs of wear,rocking in front of an enthusiastic ausidence that celebrates their return. The first song „Glory Of Shame“ explodes like a bomb and it's getting very clear that afterwards they didn't do anything with the sound, it's very authentic. The vocals are sometimes very bad (especialy in „Still Alive“), the guitars are partly too loud for the whole sound while the keys get a raw deal. However, it's a lot of fun watching the Finns on that relative big stage, giving everything. They rock until the end. There is also a very good camera work, that acoomodoates almost mechanically to the hard and also soft sounds. It creates a very good blank for the viewer. The quality is absolutely valuable and very pleasant to watch, although they work too much with warm colours. Their outfits are tyically, singer Jonne undresses in the first songs and later he wears his fancy officer-jacket from the „In My Heaven“- Video. Ut you have to see it yourself. The concert is not perfect at all, often tones are in a very bad tune, even with the instruments but that doesn't restrain the fun factor.

SETLIST
01. Glory Of The Shame
02. My My Hey Hey (Out Of The Blues)
03. Last Hero
04. Reflections
05. Sinners' Night / Misty Morning
06. Naive
07. Embracing Past
08. Frozen To Lose It All
09. Lost Soul (Instrumental Version)
10. One Last Shot
11. Planet Of The Sun
12. L.A. Fedding Fire
13. The Moment Of Our Love
14. In Memoriam (Immortal Peace)
15. Still Alive / A Song For The Broken Hearted
16. Until You're Mine
17. In My Heaven

On DVD number two bonusmaterial is batched so that you don't know where to start. Also herethey stick to the circus-motto, and I personally think that's very fancy. At first you can watch some mandatory videoclips, like „The Moment Of Our Love“ in the mental hospital (not the one in the peep-show) ans of course the „In My Heaven“- video. Additionally there are some „Making Ofs“. But they should be more seen as a funny „Behin The Scenes“-section. One of the guys films with a camcorder the happing around the shooting. One really funny highlight you find at the „Frozen To Lose It All“- Making Of where Akki dances without his pants.

MUSIC VIDEOS
01. The Moment Of Our Love
02. Frozen To Lose It All + Making Of
03. In My Heaven + Making Of
04. Planet Of The Sun + Making Of
05. Sinners' Night / Misty Morning

Continuing there is the part NEGATIVE. Here you can examine carefully the bandmembers. Under „Members“ you can click on so-called playercards where you can read a lot of info but not just listed as a profile but formulate in sentences. Then there is an almost twenty minutes interview, it shows blunt and reliable first steps of the band and how they became what they are now. The interview itself is in finnish with english subtitles. One more highlight is the „Around The World“-documentary, it shows they guys in about two hours with they life on tour. Afterwards there are some fan-made-videos from a gig in switzerland, Konzerhaus Schüür in Lucerne, November 16th, 2006.

FAN VIDEOS
01. Intro / Glory Of The Shame
02. Planet Of The Sun
03. The Moment Of Our Love

With this DVD, packed with videoclips, backstage-recodrings, studio-sessions and bandrehearsals, making ofs and a documentary, fan-pictures and videos plus gallery, with interviews and info round the band, the glam-rockers provide a straight package full of Negative and not only for ingrained fans but for normal Glam- and Sleazeaficinados. You get a lot of image and sound and for touching you get a beautiful designes booklet and the layout from the DVD itself. I can only invite you to grab it, this DVD shouldn't miss in any collection!




Valkyrend Varieté (FIN) - Tonttu & Kaihomieli Valpas
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ 

Kaihomieli Valpas



Audio CD: 2005
Lable: Playgroundmusic

Tracklist:

1. Karjala 3:53
2. Sulanut Lumi 4:21
3. Velvet Night's Mysticism 4:06
4. Teatteri 3:03
5. Our Passion's Language 5:32

Well this is special, not to compare with anything I heard before, the songs of Valkyrend Varieté  are moody acoustic Songs wih finnish traditional roots and the melancolie of this country. The finnish lyrics are powerful and sound unique to european ears.
Theres a lot of passion in it that music actually don't need electric guitars and hard drums!
The first song Karjala is a very natural song just guitar, percussion and main vocals, Sulanut Lumi then brings along some backing vocals and more keys! Velvet Night's Mysticism comes up with english lyrics and I think it reminds me of some very old irish traditionals, it either has mediveal elements!!
Teatteri is a bit faster but still on the same sound level! It reminds me at Nightwish's Erämaajärvi.
Our Passions Language starts with english spoken verse and goes on slow and calm including some grunted parts! The second voice is perfect integrated in this song, after 3 minutes it shows some faster part just to change into calm again, very good tempo changing and great sung by the vocalist!!! My favourite!!


Tonttu



Audio CD: 2007
Lable: Playgroundmusic

Tracklist:

1 Tonttu
2 Jouluun Sydän Virttynyt
3 Vapaus

"Into an unplugged style with physical instruments that create a majestic atmosphere and put you right into the right emotions. Don’t lose this trip to Mother Nature and true spirit of man..."
Well that describes exact the songs of Valkyrend Varieté.
Tonttu sounds a bit fuller than the songs from KV, it gives you a feeling like you sit in the dark under the full moon in the wilderness and the music is just around you in the air! Well that's what I assoziated with it. Find you own assoziation and listen to it!!
Jouluun Sydän Virttynyt starts with basic piano and is a kind of a ballad with a touch of darkness!
Vapaus
is a great ballad with a beautiful melody and lots of passion and feeling to dream away!
If you like traditional stuff and /or finnish music in general you will find something in this!! Try it and visit www.myspace.com/valkyrend to check some songs!!



Sound advice:  Karjala, Our Passion's Language, Vapaus!!










HEAT (SWE)- Heat



Audio CD:  2008
Lable: Playgroundmusic

Tracklist:

01 - Intro (0:33)
02 - There For You (3:25)
03 - Never Let Go (3:07)
04 - Late Night Lady (3:13)
05 - Keep On Dreaming (4:10)
06 - Follow Me (4:03)
07 - Straight For Your Heart (3:24)
08 - Cry (4:20)
09 - Feel It Again (3:24)
10 - Straight Up (4:18)
11 - Bring The Stars (3:32)
12 - You're Lying (3:13)
13 - Feel The Heat (3:52)


Sound advice:
soon






Monsteriser (FIN)- Shortcuts To A Dead End
♥ ♥ ♥



Audio CD: 2008
Lable: Playgroundmusic

Tracklist:

1. Slowly we Die
2 . Freefall
3. Save me from the outside world
4. Crying in solitude
5. Candle for the doomed
6. Nothing Is Holy
7. The Devil is Down
8. Shallow waters
9. Fly me away
11. God among us

 Monsteriser start now with their secons album called "Shortcuts To A Dead End" , well a promising title in every way. o make a long story through this album short: finnish metal is the best! By the way the music is not as dark/ black as the musicians look! It is kinda melodic metal with strong polyphonic choruses. Reminds me of Stratovarius, Charon and other big finnish metalbands. The singers voice is very many-sided, varied and the musicians are professionals on their field!

Sound advice:  Save me from the outside world, Crying insolitude, Nothing is holy







The Floor Is Made Of Lava (DEN)-  All Juice No Fruit
♥ ♥



Audio CD: 2008
Lable: Playgroundmusic

Tracklist:

01. The Floor Is Made Of Lava
02. Pick Up A Shovel
03. Do Your Sister
04. Ho
05. Happy Monday
06. Sucker Love
07. Tango In My Tummy
08. 5-Vice
09. Told Her I'm From Compton
10. You Ain't A Bitch (Bitch)
11. IKEA Did A Job On You


This band is from Denmark and their name is as creative as their album title. I had no Idea of what will come to my ears when I opened the CD and put it in my player! But well I would say this is basically, elemental Rockmusic, a bit stoic and all songs sounds equal in a way, but no, it is not that bad. If you like brit-rock like Oasis or Wheezer this is your band, man!!


Sound Advice: Ikea did a job on you & Do your sister!!

http://www.thelava.dk/







Soul Tattoo (FIN)- Malaga
♥ ♥ ♥




Audio CD: 2008
Lable: Playgroundmusic

Tracklist:

1. Feather Girl
2. La Luna Park
3. Whirling
4. Burning Edgar
5. Highlight
6. Magic Hat
7. Let The Light In
8. Deepest
9. Silent Ways
10. Still Strangers
11. Skeleton Garden
(12. Space Rocker)

Soul Tattoo are difficult to classify. The album incudes (metal and) rock songs and very nice ballads like Whirling. The band is from Finland but I miss the typically finnish sound it is more an southern-american sound. Just at the number 4 Burning edgar- a very funny song- you can hear the finnish extravagance. Not that this album is not dark, sometimes it is!
There are definitley some glam-rock influences and I am pretty sure you could dance to every single song and have fun. It is crazy, dark, funny and adorable all rolled into one!
For Fans of finnish Rockmusic (Rasmus, Jann Wilde, Uniklubi, Sunrise Ave, NGT) a must have for all others a good choice!

   Sound advice: Burning Edgar, Highlight, Magic Hat, Still Strangers





Asgard (RUS)- On the Verge
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ 



Audio CD: 2008
Lable: Playgroundmusic

Tracklist
01 - Sermon of Memphistipheles (4:32)
02 - Greedy, Thieving Weaklings (4:15)
03 - She-Wolf (7:07)
04 - The Room of Nowhere (5:48)
05 - Frozen Void (3:45)
06 - Headless Horseman (7:34)
07 - On The Verge (7:27)
08 - Wave of Destiny (7:06)
09 - Presto Evolution in G-dur (4:23)
10 - The Eternal Road (5:13)


I was very doubting I have to say, when I got that record from Asgard for a review. Asgard is a russian band and they now have released their debut album "On The Verge".
well the first chords reminded me extremely of Nightwish and oher related symphonic/ melodic metal bands.
This is melodic hardrock meets power metal. They open the album with a fantastic song called Sermon Of Mephistopheles that is strong melodic rocker with pompish keyboards and a good chorus. I just found myself dancing through the room.

The melodies on the album are really great to listen and it is not  that big problem that their singer Alexander Savchenkos seems to have problems with the spoken language. The singer is not an outstanding one but it works, the album lives from the great music! It's just the question how he sings live?
The ballad Frozen Void is pure magic with a  wonderful melodie and the fantastic chorus as most of the songs have!  They should try some songs with female vocals as a contrast!!

The album has been recorded with Micke ”Nord” Andersson (The Rasmus) as producer. 

If you like melodic metal you have to listen to Asgard!


Sound advice: Sermon of Mephistopheles, Frozen Void,  She- Wolf



Lovex (FIN) - Pretend or Surrender
 ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥



Label: GUN (Sony BMG)
Release: May 2nd 2008

Tracklist:

If She's Near
Turn
Take A Shot
Different Light
Writings On The Wall
Time And Time Again
Belonging To No One
My Isolation
Rid Of Me
Ordinary Day
End Of The World
End Of The World (Outro)


Almost exactly one year after the release of their debut album "Divine Insanity" the six Finns from Lovex are back with some fresh material.
The first track on the album "If she's near" lets you imagine that Lovex have gone through an ripening in the manner only a band which knows exactly what they want can do it: harder guitar riffs from Sammy Black and Vivian Sin'Amor, deep lyrics and a catching tunes which makes you wish for more.
"Turn" and "Belonging To No One" some of the faster tracks of the album also convince by sounding more grown up and makes the new Lovex sound  more unique.
Sometimes you even get the idea of listening to an alternative band like Linkin Park or System Of A Down, when you notice how singer Theon McInsane worked on his voice, trying to sound more harder,  by shouting out the lines of the songs.  The band defenately tries to angle off and get a name as an serious band with some orchestra parts and dominating, smashing drum parts by Lovex's youngest member Julian Drain, who gets support from bass player Jason, as we all well know from bands like Evanescence and even Lovex's compatriots from HIM.
Though some might have expected and album pretty much influenced by the 80s after Lovex released their first single "Take A Shot" some time ago, you can't directly find a big common.
In fact keyboarder Christian's parts might remind of the old days of popular bands like Bon Jovi, but Lovex still manage to bring their on style in.
For those who were waiting desperately for some ballades like "Remorse" from the last album Divine Insanity, Lovex also got some nice songs on Pretend Or Surrender: Time And Time Again, a song about a busted love story or End Of The World will make the teen girls melt away and go on dreaming about being the one, Theon is singing for.

So to sum up you can say that, though Lovex grew in their music, they still hold on their old sound.

Sound advice: Belonging to no one, End of the world, Take a shot
 

Midnattsol (GER / NOR)- Nordlys
 ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥



Audio CD: 28.03.2008 (GER)
Lable: napalmrecords 


Tracklist:

01. Open your eyes
02. Skogens lengsel
03. Northern light
04. Konkylie
05. Wintertimes
06. Race of time
07. New horizon
08. River of virgin soil
09. En natt i nord
10. Octobre (Limited Edition)


The second album of Midnattsol, Nordlys, sounds much more professional than the first one what makes sense if you knowparts of it were produced in the legendary Finnvox studios. It's not possible to put them into one category. The music still has influences from the nordic folk and it is still metal. But  Carmens voice sounds much stronger as before, she learned a lot over the past two years and she is definitley better than her sister Liv Kristine (Leaves Eyes) with her thin voice, and it's nice to hear that this "operatic/ symphonic" metal works also with a lower voice than a sopran.  The album lives from the dark, melancholic atmosphere that is perfectly  converted on this album with the tragical vocals , the very dense weaved sound with a lot of mystic tunes.  There are strong heavy metal parts and faster songs that breaks the melancholie up and make this album interesting in every way and I never had the thought of ever saying that, it sounds sometimes like the old Nightwish with these full sound and the female vocals and it is as good as they were.  We are very excited to listen to the new songs live and you should do so if you like bands like Nightwish, Epica, Regicide or  Tristania.

Sound advice: Open your Eyes, Northern Light, Konkylie

www.midnattsol.com
www.myspace.com/midnattsolfolk

PICTURES of Midnattsol in the Gallery

www.northern-rockmusic.com







Lines of Leaving (FIN)- Battle  for Humanity
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥



Audio CD: 20.07.2007
Lable: Independent Sounds OY

Tracklist:

1. Extravagance (The Fabulous Life Of)
2. Fistula 
3. Conscience Rise (No Kiotos?)
4. Slut #1
5. Hearts In Overdrive
6. Sacrifice For A Greater Cause
7. Christy Brown
8. Tourniquet
9. Of Cause It’s All Your Fault
10. Battle For Humanity
11. Survival Of The Fittest (Album Version)


Lines Of Leaving  convince us with a full Power Rock / Metal Sound that's very propulsive and invites to mosh!
The political & social-critical lyrics (that are very impressive by the way- you shoud read through and think about) and the singers voice conveys the impression that there are a bigger punk- influences working within that band.  They really have something to say, so listen!!
Even every song owns an catchy chorus what makes this album very strong and useful also for people who are not that much into metal or hardrock, Tourniquet for example shows much comercial potential with a very plausible melodie! !
The complete sound is very clear and straight, no flourishes and no needless instruments are used in this production. Just the naked truth.. an that is what describes the album the best: HONESTY !
So go and get yourself this album, you will love it!!  I promise!

Sound advice: Hearts In Overdrive, Sacrifice For A Greater Cause, Tourniquet, Battle For Humanity!







Matthau Mikojan (FIN)- Same
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥



Audio CD:  12.03.2008 (FI)
Lable: Poko Records

Tracklist:

1. From My Mouth To Me And To You
2. Too Fortunate To Cry
3. Welcome & Goodbye
4. Stiletto Heels
5. Ditch
6. No Hard feelings
7. A Girl On Her Own
8. Come Clean
9. April Song
10. Bring You Back
11. Then She Cried

Not only for Bloodpit Fans this piece of art will be one of the best CDs this year.
Giving a deep look into his heart and soul ex-Bloodpit singer Matthau Mikojan is singing about love and live, inspired by his own experiences.
Honest lyrics, mixed with catchy melodies, his music will make you feel like every single is dedicated to nobody but you.
Once more, Mikojan shows his great writing skills and sense for good rock music.
Probably Matthau has never been more honest than on this record. Taking a closer look at Stiletto Heels, or Bring You Back you got the feeling that he wrote this songs for the only one in his life.
The one's who were expecting him to reproach anyone for whatever happened or caused the seperating from his band will be disappointed. In this case Matthau just does what he can do best: singing authentic songs and touching everyone deep within.
April, one of the slow songs on the Album reminds of an old cowboy song, down at the fire place with it's whistled intro. In general songs like No Hard Feelings or A Girl On Her Own, a song about finding his own way, procure the impression, as Matthau finally find HIS own. He grew up in the past months and that album defenately reflects that.
His lyrics became more wise and his music sounds more grown up.
You can hear how content he is with his self and the things he is doing at the moment proverbial.
But not only songs with deep meanings are there to catch the listener. Songs as Print Lies or Too Fortunate To Cry just invite you to let go of everyday life and having a good time with his music.
For all of those who are getting excited now, Matti will be on tour this fall, to prove his life qualities.

Sound advice:  2) Too fortunate to cry, 7) A girl on her own, 11) And then she cried







Stam1na (FIN)- Raja
 ♥



Audio CD:13.02.2008 (FIN)
Label: Sakara Records

Tracklist:

1. Hammasratas
2. Susi-ihminen
3. Muistipalapelit
4. Vartijaton
5. Voima vastaan viha
6. Lääke
7. Kädet vasten lasia
8. Luova hulluus
9. Muuri
10. Murtumispiste

Raja is the third album of the extravagant finns and it is their best work yet.
They present precious trash metal with finnish vocals what makes it even more unique for everyone outside of Finland.  Raja hits the finnish charts at No1 and will be released in Germany in June 2008. In Finland they are fabuluos known and acknowledged, it's time to conquer Germany and the rest of Europe.
The songs on Raja are technically demanding, played with lot's of passion, power and precision.
If you've ever seen Stam1na live you can imagine the head- bang -factor of this album. It just brings fun to listen to these progressive tunes and forwarding rhythms, even if you don't understand the lyrics. Try it!!

Sound-advice: 1) Hammasratas, 5) Voima vastaan viha and 7) Kädet vasten lasia!

If you wanna check Stam1na live, there's the possibility at 27. Apr 2008 in Berlin @ Knaak.


Pictures of Stam1na 2007









Reflexion (FIN)- Dead to the past, blind for tomorrow




Audio CD:  14.03.2008
Label: Out Of Line

Tracklist:
1. Non-stop Glorious Ride
2. Embrace Of Wrath
3. Twilight Child
4. Dancing In The Air
5. Dead Without You
6. Weak And Tired
7. Black Is The Colour Of Your Life
8. The One With No Name
9. Forever Got Too Long
10. Thousand Nails In My Heart
11. Just One World (Goodbye)

After releasing the last album Out Of The Dark in 2006 the finnish Goth-rockers are back with Dead To The Past, Blind For Tomorrow. It unites melodic- rock with the typically finnish goth- melancholy and it's definitley an album for every dark soul out there. Nevertheless it is also a powerful, diversified and hot composition of songs that always communicate honesty what makes the band just more sympathic. It reminds of bands like Entwine, whose drummer Aksu Hanttu took part on this album as producer, HIM and maybe To Die For, to name just a few ones in this big, almost overflowded genre. You can also hear the developement from the last to the new album, the songs are harder and fresher, what shows that Reflexion never rests to become more rock 'n' roll.  "DTTP, BFT" is not that extraordinary work that breaks all the mold but it is a solid and competent album that bring a lot of joy in spite of all the compulsive melancholy and that has the makings of becoming a basic-one in anyones cd-collection.

Sound-advice: Dead Without You, Twilight Child, Black Is The Colour Of Your Life

Interview with Reflexion 2007
Pictures 2007





Manzana (FIN)- Nothing as whole as a broken heart
 ♥


Audio CD :1. June 2007)
Label: Zyx/Gcr (ZYX)

Tracklist:
1. Pain
2. Falling To Pieces
3. Silence
4. Mermaid
5. Gift
6. Call
7. Cripple Heart
8. Diamond
9. Valentine
10. FALLING TO PIECES, (Video) (optional)



Manzana is a metal/ rock combo from Tampere/ Finland with a female singer.
Frontgirl Piritta’s voice is very variable from soft tunes to a great rock voice.
Their first Album „Nothing as whole as a broken heart“ is  a complete thing with a high leveled sound, hard guitars and great melodies.
It starts with „Pain“ wich begins with some synthetic piano tunes that goes over to heavier guitar sound, this song is the perfect introduction for the whole album. Rocking and melodic vocals comes together all along...
It goes on with „Falling to pieces“ where the focus is more on the  vocals and Pirittas voice sounds more crystal than on „Pain“! This song ist to be one of the best on this album.
It is followed by „Silence“ wich is everything but not silent!! Piritta gives anything and it’s great to hear what she can do with her voice! „Silence“ is a fast song that pushes you forward with hard beats and dirty guitars.
Mermaid“  for me is the big highlight on the album! The melodie fixes itself in your head after listen to it once and it is definitely a rock ‚n‘ roll song with „Hit“ qualities!!
Gift“ is different from the beginning on! It sounds like it comes from a crazy trip or something. It reminds me on some american independent girl rockbands of the 90ties like „Letters to Cleo“. Strange , steeled and hypnotic!
The next song „Call“ is again a very melodic rocksong that animates to move your asses and dance along!
The much darker „Cripple heart“ convinces with a full sound and a „sing along“ chorus- you like to mosh?? You can do!!
Diamond“ is the calmest song on this album even though it’s not a ballade. It leads us to the last song: „Valentine“ wich also seems to have a HIT character and lot's of commercial potencial!! 
It closes a very succsessful compilation of great songs on a high level that are individual each for itself but have an unmistakable sound and that always will be discovered as Manzana.
If you like metal and rock’n’roll you need this album in your collection!

Frances Amelie Sin™

© www.northern-rockmusic.com