Posts Tagged ‘metallica

23
Jan
13

Music Review: Newsted – Metal

Newsted - Metal (EP 2013)

Jason Newsted’s new band has released what sounds like Metallica’s Load without the masterly songwriting. The bassist even sings like James Hetfield.

To the brainless boobs who have been going around saying Jason Newsted’s new band’s debut EP is better than anything Metallica has released in the last 20 years, answer ask yourselves this question: How is Newsted‘s Metal different from Metallica‘s Load? Yeah, stop looking at each other – I’ll tell you: Newsted doesn’t have Metallica‘s songwriting skills. Quit gawking, motherfuckers, because Jason Newsted’s new band hasn’t done anything worth even a second listen. It’s limp-wristed, watered down metal, unfit to be labelled as thrash metal – four songs that even Lou Reed might find weak. It’s not as bad as fucking Lulu, but that doesn’t mean anything. Fucking idiots who got swayed by public opinion so much that they didn’t give Load a good listen – it’s brilliant songwriting, even if it’s nothing like the ‘Tallica‘s early attacks, and it has some great songs – so I’m asking you again: How is the heaviest thing you can find on Newsted‘s Metal better than the worst feature you’ve been trashing Load for? But it could be that Jason only wants to jam with two other guys and have fun and isn’t out to cock a snook at Metallica, so if you want to hate on the ‘Tallica, wait till Newsted at least attempts to reach that level.

RATING: 2/5

Metallica’s James Hetfield in Mumbai | 10 Metal Bands That Will Smash 2013

Concert Review: Guns N’ Roses in Bombay | Concert Review: Slayer in Bangalore

06
Jan
13

Choosing My Religion

Little do Metallica fans know that after the band’s smashing concert in India, vocalist/rhythm guitarist James Hetfield had a secret meeting with none other than Bollywood megastar Amitabh Bachchan in aamchi Mumbai. The ‘Tallica frontman decided that he wanted to turn into a religious nut just like Megadeth’s Dave Mustaine, and so, Hetfield went to the sets of Kaun Banega Crorepati, where the Big B advised our man Jaymz to start walking the holy path by seeing how he felt about Hinduism, Islam and Christianity. mehta toons - choosing my religionDedicated to all the Metallibashers who couldn’t make it to the Bangalore concert after the Delhi fiasco.

Illustration by Saloni Sinha | Text & Concept by Aditya Mehta

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15
Oct
12

Review: My Dying Bride’s ‘A Map Of All Our Failures’

A track-by-track review of the latest offering from the doom metal kings

Aaron Stainthorpe said in an interview that his lyrical themes revolve around sex, death and religion, and My Dying Bride‘s magnificent discography is proof that it those three topics have been enough for the rest of the band to wrap their powerful music around. On A Map Of All Our Failures, the singer begins his whining much before you expect him to, sorrowful as ever on ‘Kneel Till Doomsday’, a song unmistakably MDB. The mournful riffs plod on till the band moves unexpectedly into death-doom territory with harsh growling, showing they are as at home with extreme metal as they were on As The Flower Withers.

If there ever can be a doom-metal version of Metallica‘s musical style, it is ‘The Poorest Waltz’. My Dying Bride have since their debut held their place in my life as the masters of melancholy, and most of the sections on this track are what could be passages the ‘Tallica couldn’t come up with on Load or Reload. ‘The Poorest Waltz’ could well be the sequel to ‘Low Man’s Lyric’, and that’s as soul-stirring as music gets.

At no point does A Map Of All Our Failures attempt to create new anthems; My Dying Bride have enough of those. It becomes clear as the album progresses that the band is helplessly occupied thought, either dragging the listener deeper into sorrow or very engrossed in telling stories. ‘A Tapestry Scorned’ is storytelling with music and Aaron singing, growling and talking, and the song is nicely done filler. The doyens of doom get back to their bereavement with ‘Like A Perpetual Funeral’, a beautiful track which has only the guitars coating Aaron’s crooning for more than three minutes, till the slow drum beats and bass get the song moving, only to stop soon again. ‘Like A Perpetual Funeral’ does sound nice, but the most fitting music to play at a loved one’s death is ‘For My Fallen Angel’, that heartrending song from MDB‘s Like Gods Of The Sun.

From here the album goes fully into storytelling mode, and it gets very boring unless you’re getting drunk, except the parts without any vocals, because from ‘Hail Odysseus’ onwards it is the music that is the highlight of My Dying Bride‘s latest work. This song should have been instrumental, because the vocals aren’t doing anything they haven’t done before and are instead being a distraction. ‘Abandoned As Christ’ could have been enjoyable if it didn’t have Aaron – I love his voice and singing style, but it gets too much at times – because this way it’s as boring as Jesus. The song drags on and on and I’m wondering how I’ll survive the last two songs. ‘A Map Of All Our Failures’ and ‘Within The Presence Of Absence’ are more interesting though, and the vocals belong with the music to the songs the way they should. No band has sounded as great with violins and keys the way My Dying Bride has; they use both to maximum effect even when they’re using very little of them. Craving as I was for doom metal/death-doom/funeral doom, the 2012 offering from these greats has left me exhausted.

A Map Of All Our Failures doesn’t surpass or even come close to My Dying Bride‘s previous works, but it is an album the band of this stature can take the liberty of making to release creative energy. Evinta seemed pointless to me even though I’m a big fan of MDB, and The Barghest O’ Whitby was quite interesting, but a few listens of this and I’m done. A Map Of All Our Failures isn’t an album I want to give my attention to again except for that one song ‘The Poorest Waltz’, unless I get back to drinking, but then there’s so much other music that’ll go so much better with that state.

RATING: 2.5/5

Black Metal 2012: Solar Deity’s In The Name Of Satan | Solar Deity’s Snowless | Solar Deity’s The Darkness Of Being

17
Sep
12

Is India having an international-band overdose?

Slayer is finally coming to India, but even Megadeth is returning for its second concert in the country, and both the shows – Megadeth In Delhi and Slayer in Bangalore – have a gap of a week.  The Indian thrash fan is luckier than the open-minded Indian rock music buff who will have a lot more shows to attend. It’s a great thing to have these legendary bands come to the country and blow us away, no doubt, but it really looks like the average Indian metalhead  goes to school or college or has work and family responsibilities to handle and may not be able to run to Bangalore or Delhi every other month.

MEGADETH IS INEVITABLE: Back for a second helping!

It’s a fair excuse for an outstation holiday, too, for some of us overworked people who find it taxing to even think about getting out of the city for a weekend. But the thrash fan who missed Megadeth when they hit Bengaluru in 2008 is going to have to pay through his nose to attend both the shows, or will slap his forehead after picking one extraordinary band over another he loves equally.

Having already seen Metallica and Megadeth when they performed in Bangalore, I personally won’t give a fuck about seeing those super bands live now unless they hold a concert in Mumbai, and I’m going to feel the exact same way about my all-time favourite band Slayer after this October. And Iron Maiden – I love them to death and have attended their concerts in Bangalore and Mumbai but have no desire to see them ever again. Hell bless them, because heaven can wait. But not everybody is satisfied as easily as I am.

SLAYER AWAITS: Welcome back… for the first time!

The younger lot has it much worse. They have all these old greats to catch up with and newer bands like Gojira and Periphery, who are playing on consecutive days over a weekend in Bangalore. Children Of Bodom and Testament and Behemoth are coming to Bangalore as well. Of course, all the shows will suffer to a small extent, but that’s what the organizers already know.

And don’t we all know what happened to Korn? It wasn’t heavy rains, but dismal sales of the very expensive tickets that didn’t allow the band to perform in Mumbai. An out-of-shape nu-metal band struggling to keep up with the times by playing dubstep wasn’t able to fool this nation (we’ve had far greater scams here), and ran back after admiring the Taj Mahal and eating chicken tikka masala.

India has been ready for international acts for a long time now, and the live scene is bubbling because of world-famous bands looking at India as the big country with hungry audiences waiting for the main course.

IN CONCERT: Metallica in Bangalore | SLIDESHOW: Megadeth in Bangalore

CONCERT REVIEW: SLAYER IN BENGALURU, INDIA | Bevar Sea Album Review

30
Aug
12

Gig Review: Outside Lands, San Francisco

By Karan Patel (Simple Complex Continuity)

Outside Lands – The First Day

Reached into the city. The quiet California land mass as seen driving on the 5 North had been replaced by a spectacular vibrant San Francisco buzz.

Parking, as usual was a pain in the ass. I gave up and parked my car for 2 nights at 25 usd/a night. Caught a bus from the Civic Center and as soon as we halted, started to run through the walking trail, to make my way to the Polo Fields.

Beck

Just made it in time when Beck was playing “Devil’s Haircut”. It just about blew my mind. I used to relate to this song literally, back when i used to have long hair. I still do, but only figuratively. Witty punk rock fueled with Beck’s painful lyrics, just got me jumping up and down. They played a great set, with the bassist playing the cello on some of the songs. Interestingly enough, they break into an acoustic cover song by Neil Young, who would be playing in a couple of hours. A brilliant selection, considering the location, they played “After The Gold Rush”, and the crowd was out with their lighters and smoke.

Foo Fighters

Beck was done. My friends were at the show by then. A couple of beers and pizza slices later, Foo Fighters stormed onto the stage with the most maddest, kinetic energy ever. Taylor Hawking seemed like he was going the beat the crap out of the drums until they bled. Dave Grohl was killing the microphone. Pat Smear was tearing up the bass and Chris Shiflett was modest in his solos, yet very powerful. They had no lights, fireworks or any other public gimmicks other than of course, jumping and running around the stage and at times Grohl would run into an open strip where the audience was, which was, for obvious reasons, barricaded on both sides. They played enough songs for an hour and a half including all the crowd favorites such as “The Pretender”, “Learn To Fly”, “All my life”, “Walk”, “White Limo”, “Rope”, “My Hero”,”Best Of You”, “Everlong” and a few more.

I have been dying to see this band live since 2005 , when i first arrived in the States. A seven year wait and it was totally worth it. I was hoping they would have played at least a couple more songs , but the band had different plans as after the third or the fourth song, Dave Grohl says, “We have an hour more to go and we gotta play a lot more songs. But let’s be honest. The sooner we get done, we all get to see Neil F@#$^% Young”.

I still have to watch this band again somewhere, wherever. They are off the hook.

Neil Young and Crazy Horse

Neil Young and Crazy Horse took the stage soon and the stage exploded with four seventy plus men jamming away to glory on a song called “Break It Down”.

I have not heard anything by Crazy Horse. Just a bunch of songs by Young, but this was like watching a real jam. It seemed like they were in a  garage and just jamming. Incredible is the word! It was just pure brilliance, as each song ended in an eccentric feedback and a unique form of experimentation backgrounded by different kinds of sounds. They just did not stop playing with each song ending with bizarre and yet organized melodious sounds, which were eventually built back into a new song.It was very inspiring to say the least. I felt like getting out of there, grab a guitar and hook it up to a couple of effects pedals and make some noise.

They did play a few of the songs i have heard and it was definitely a treat. “Into the Black”, “The Needle and the Damage Done” and “Cinnamon Girl”.

Outside Lands – The Second Day

The next day, my friend and me did not have tickets. This is my favorite part and i am so excited to write about this. TICKET SCALPING!! Yeah, that is how we got in.

The official tickets had long been sold out and all third party vendors were selling at a ridiculous marked up price, so that was not an option. So the idea was to go there and ask anyone with extra tickets. The official price was a 110 bucks with tax and we were willing to pay till 200, as Metallica was playing, we figured it would be worth it.

I am not sure if this is luck or whatever you want to call it but we reached there and within a minute we found a scalper, whose name shall not be mentioned. We got a great deal.

A 100 bucks a pop and we pay him once we pass through security/ticket check. Wait, what , we are paying less than the official tickets. Hell yes, lets do it. So the ticket he gave us was a xerox copy of a 3 day pass issued to someone, whose name shall not be mentioned either. All right – it was Anna Rodriguez. Thank You, Anna! We reach the ticket check point. The scalper waits till his friend, who works for the ticket check arrives. He walks in before us, tell her, the next two guys are cool and we pass through. She scans the ticket and the machine says “Invalid Ticket”. She smiles and says “You can go in now”. That was it. Thats how easy it was.

If you ever do not have tickets, trust me, just go there. 8/10 times, you get lucky and those are some pretty good odds. This is the third time i have been lucky, twice before with Alice In Chains and Soundgarden.

Alabama Shakes and The Kills

So we go inside, our joy we couldn’t contain. The crowd was definitely more vibrant than the previous day on account of the fact that it was a Saturday. We checked out a band called the Alabama Shakes and it was a nice folkish band and a couple of Newcastle’s later we headed to the field where Metallica would play in a bit.

We reached there when “The Kills” were killing the stage. Definitely got me hooked on as i have to get my hands on this band. Its a great punk rock duo and the female vocalist plays the guitar, drums and bass on different songs.

Metallica

A couple of tacos, tater tots and best damn cheese grilled sandwich later Metallica exploded on the stage after playing a clip from “The Good, The Bad and The Ugly”, where Tuco (The Ugly) is running around the cemetery. I obviously thought “Master of Puppets” would just start anytime, but the lights went out and “Hit The Lights” started rocketing through the atmosphere. Not much to my surprise, but “Master of Puppets” was next. As a kid, i have been to many a mosh pit. Every Thursday night at Razzberry Rhino, a pub in Mumbai where Indian Rock bands have made their debut. But this was a hell pit, as everyone literally threw their bodies around in a sheer f$%^& frenzy. A girl friend of mine was devasted as she took a small hit, so for her sake we went back a little bit but it has hilarious enough to see the pit after so many years. The last mosh pit i have been in was for a secret Soundgarden show two years ago. Metallica might be old but they totally totally still got it. I mean its incredible that Hetfield’s voice has not changed a bit since The Black Album. Beautiful guitar solos by Hammett, Robert Trujillo’s trademark style of playing bass with that frog like stand and Lars was just being Lars. I think its one of the only bands in the world that i feel more comfortable calling them by their first or last names as against full names. P.see: i obviously do not know them.

The highlight of the night: “One”. As all Metallica fans know, this is a song about a soldier who is hit by an artillery shell and loses his limbs, eyes, ears and mouth. His mind functions perfectly, however, leaving him trapped inside his own body. They recreated a war scene with fake bombs exploding and a lot of FAYYYYURRRR!! I honestly cant put this in words, but they started playing the most trippiest lights to go along with the song, it was f%^& unbelievable. The band went on to play most of my favorites including “Ride The Lightning”, “Creeping Death”, “Blackened”, “For Whom The Bell Tolls”, “Fade To Black”, “Enter Sandman”, “Sanitarium”, “Seek and Destroy”, “Battery” and more. I mentioned earlier about Foo Fighters’ energy, but Metallica was way more charged up than any other band i have ever seen.

It was a blast of a two nighter and as i write all of this a few days later, i can still feel the sounds and sights of the two days spent in music, food, beer and a whole lot of people feeling the exact same way as me.

Website of the festival: Outside Lands

MORE GIG REVIEWS: Metallica in Bangalore | Megadeth’s Tour of Duty | Metal Bajaao Special Edition | Deathfest 2 at B69 | Rolling Stone Metal Awards 2012

07
Nov
11

…And Metallica For All

An open letter to India’s metal maniacs from an overjoyed, content Metallica fan

There are now two categories of Indian metalheads: those who attended the Metallica concert in Bangalore, and those who didn’t. On the evening of October 30, 2011 at around 7:20 pm, my country saw the greatest heavy metal band in the world ever – right before its unbelieving eyes that were dehydrated from two litres of craft beer and half an hour of crying. When these eyes opened because it was impossible to hold back tears at the tune that marks the grand entry of the world’s most influential metal band on stage, they saw countless others in the exact same state – drunk or sober, there were so many others sobbing uncontrollably. It wasn’t closure of any kind; the band that understood us when nobody else did, the force that gave us strength and saw us through the most difficult phases of our youth, the band that wrote and sang songs about our lives, for all of us and yet exclusively for each of us – that band let us know that evening that they had never been content being there as just our emotional strength or spiritual guide – that evening they stood before us – physically present, to make it even more personal.

The Delhi Fiasco: The Thing That Should Not Have Been

Funny as it was (and it still cracks me up) at how things went all wrong in Gurgaon, Haryana, it also makes me sad to think how fucked the fans must have felt at Metallica’s no-show. It is terrible what must have happened to them: Stranded in a strange city with 25,000 stranded strangers; air, bus, or train tickets to cancel or amend; time wasted, money wasted… my heart goes out to those who were at the venue that evening and couldn’t make it to Palace Grounds.

About those guys who trashed the stage and broke equipment – well, I don’t expect Metallica fans to behave any other way. Those were drunk, pissed-off Metallica fans who had been standing for hours without eating, pissing or shitting. Would they nod their heads like Coldplay fans and walk out? I’m sure there were a few hundred Metallibashers among those 25,000 pussies, so I’m slightly disappointed the damaging incorporated was such a low-key affair.

Holier Than Thou

If someone didn’t make it to the concert, what makes people think they’d want live updates of the damn show? It wasn’t a cricket match that people had to keep a track of the score. Were people dying to know which song Metallica was playing or what James Hetfield was saying?

Metallica has to be experienced, and I believe every Metallibasher understands that. I only feel sorry for people who thought they were doing something of great importance by providing live updates during the Metallica concert – you missed the experience of a lifetime because you were tweeting instead of taking it all in. Now don’t send live updates to anyone during an act of sex, because you’ll be ruining it for your partner as well.

All you ‘fans’ who didn’t come to the show and hoped Kirk Hammett would fuck up the Nothing Else Matters solo and disappoint the poseur fans: That’s James’ solo, not Kirk’s – and you’re the poseurs.

The kids you called ‘poseurs’ made time for the concert and spent good money buying a ticket to the show and traveling to Gurgaon/Bangalore to see a band they cared about. You were laughing with me on Friday night and scratching your balls on Sunday evening. Good going, losers.

Besides separating the metalheads from the poseurs, the mighty ‘Tallica also give a few idiots who know absolutely nothing about Metallica or metal or even rock music the chance to spout moral commentary on networking sites. One of the rules of Heavy Metal is that when you know absolutely nothing about metal or what it represents… shut the fuck up because you’re going to be taken even less seriously from now on.

Banging The Heads That Didn’t Bang

To all who didn’t attend the concert because you thought Metallica are ‘sellouts’, ‘too commercial now’, ‘washed-out’, ‘have-been’ etc… after Kill ‘Em All, Ride The Lightning, Master Of Puppets, …And Justice For All, The Black Album, Load (it’s a classic, no matter what you say), some good songs from Reload, a strong comeback with Death Magnetic, and a few other strong songs from here and there – and we won’t even get into the live shows and how they’ve influenced how many bands and how they still pack arena after arena – you want to tell me Metallica has let you down in some way?

Never again shall we never speak of ‘integrity’ and ‘loyalty’ because it is clear that we know different definitions of those words. People who stopped listening to metal years ago and can’t tolerate heavy music now – even they came for the fucking show; while you were sitting at home, tweeting and whining about how Metallica are too old now or whichever reason you picked up to excuse yourself from attending the concert. The ones who were there that evening to witness Metallica live are the ones who have understood Metallica, are the ones who understand Metallica.

Fucking pussies, I will laugh so hard when you run to attend a local show to “support the scene.” You can’t support yourself or even be present when the most phenomenal international act of all time comes to your country, so next time don’t bother exhuming some ‘kvlt’ band from the underground to share with your fellow poseurs, because you’re disqualified from talking about metal and its intricacies. You have disqualified yourself from talking about music.

Metallica’s Final Destination: India

It only seems right that Metallica came to India after all these years of making us wait. Everything is big now, everything is so huge, inflated – of course, now was the time for Metallica to show India their full form. As Metallica belted out anthem after anthem in Bangalore, it was easy to see why Iron Maiden and Megadeth came before them. I now think Iron Maiden and Megadeth, with all love and respect, served merely as warm-up acts. Iron Maiden came with melodies galore but didn’t pack a punch; Megadeth were stunningly brilliant but charmless; they were getting our nation ready for the magnificence that is Metallica.

This was one of the biggest shows for Metallica, and there’s no doubt about that. They came on one glorious evening to this overpopulated, poverty-ridden, corruption-ravaged, unorganized and impossible-to-manage nation that has countless diseases and even more deities – and they delighted thousands of people who had been waiting for many years to see that day. Time did not bring them to us; the four horsemen came when they decided the time was right, when they wanted to come, when they chose to come. Because time was never on our side. And we would have waited a whole lifetime.

22
Sep
11

Music Review: Machine Head – Unto The Locust (2011)

Looks like someone in hell heard my complaints about the lack of quality thrash metal in my life, and it sure sounds like it. The shortage of chugging guitars, memorable licks, solid grooves, killer solos, thumping bass and pounding drums – the dearth of everything that made me a fan of thrash metal along with a curiosity for more morbid sounds and the need to reach deeper emotional states drew me towards death metal and black metal respectively. Thrash Metal still doesn’t sound as convincingly morbid as Death Metal unless we’re talking about Slayer, and Black Metal is all one needs to reach emotional heights and also plunge into its depths.

Machine Head’s 2011 album Unto The Locust is that beast which smashes its way into the soul with everything thrash metal needs to be. Modern and yet fully traditional, Robb Flynn & Co. mean business right from the first note of ‘I Am Hell (Sonata In C#)’, dragging the listener on a wild, thrilling ride of superb thrash metal, complete with rowdy riffing, perfectly timed breaks, thunderous double bass drumming, dazzling solos and boisterous vocals.

Thrash Metal is meant to be ballsy – even Anthrax manage to sound likeable when they get ballsy – but Machine Head in 2011 is pushing the boundaries with so much force that the titans of thrash (Metallica, Megadeth and Slayer) will have to match this intensity to prove their relevance.

Balls to you if you think this is ‘nu-metal’; Machine Head is modern thrash metal: polished and yet rougher than every other thrash metal great right now. There is nothing stale on Unto The Locust, not one dull moment, and in fact, it’s the most refreshing music I’ve heard so far this year.

Just listen to what they’ve done with Judas Priest’s ‘The Sentinel’ and Rush’s ‘Witch Hunt’ – it’s one great band covering two. These are bonus tracks on the special edition, with an acoustic version of ‘Darkness Within’ thrown in. Here’s a band I could never get into despite liking two of their albums quite a bit, and I’m embracing them now. Machine Head‘s Unto The Locust is a contender for album of the year. ‘Music, it will set you free.’

                                                                    




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