Tempt-Runaway  ©2016 Rock Candy Records
This album is really refreshing. A young band that creates a sound very similar in my opinion to the mid 80's hard rock genre. Very upbeat and memorable sounding melodic hard rock. Musically, the album is guitar driven with big choruses and comparisons are drawn to bands such as Van Halen. Upon many listens the vocals at times reminded me of Tesla's Jeff Keith and musically I was thinking along the lines of bands such as Bronz who I was a big fan of. Michael Wagener who worked with many great bands and albums in the 80's was here for the mixing of this album. Great results and 15 good tracks make this a very cool and in a way old school kind of listen! 
J.B.O.-11    ©2016 AFM Records 
At times I've found myself wondering about the language barrier and music. You know, like all of the other parts of the world that embrace english speaking (or singing) bands although some might not understand anything of what's being said. That's me and J.B.O. Never have been exposed to this band before but they have a decent size catalog at this point and deal with quite a bit of humor apparently. I like what I hear in the music and found it interesting and fun to listen to the tracks such as 'Nürnberg Groove' and 'Har Har Har' that are going to come across very familiar. If you don't mind music delivered in a foreign language, this album is really cool!
Tarja-The Brightest Void  ©2016 Ear Music
As Tarja progresses through her solo career post Nightwish, it's apparent that she is only getting stronger with each album. In my opinion, 'The Brightest Void' is some of her best work to date. Michael Monroe appears on the track 'Your Heaven and Your Hell' and does an excellent job. Kudos to Tarja for letting this song play to the strengths of Monroe and what he typically does. Also notable on the album is Chad Smith and Toni Tarunen. This album is a prequel to the album 'Shadow Self' which streets August 5th. With the quality of what was offered here, I'm very excited to be able to check out the next chaper very soon. Very good record!
Sinnergod-Sinnergod   ©2016 Sinner-G Records
​One of the styles of heavier music that I personally have come to like a lot is Gothic. I had not run across Sinnergod before this release, but after checking this out, they are definitely on my continue to watch for new stuff list. I did go back and check out some of the bands previous stuff, and while pretty good, this album goes a definite step above. You get that thick wall of sound as usual in this genre and the huge amount of atmosphere as well. The songs are really good and in a lot of ways very diverse. The bands core sound is evident with each track, but there are a variety of differences in play as well. Definite easy recommend!
Letzte Instanz-Liebe Im Krieg   ©2016 AFM Records
Another band that offers their music in their native tongue. Knowing that, this is more based in a Gothic rock sound with a fair amount of melody. For listeners like me who don't speak that particular language, we turn to the music itself and with Letzte Instanz, it's quite good. This to me was an album that didn't immediately gel, but upon more listening continued to grow. There are a lot of rich tones an cool atmosphere to the songs on this album. Songs like 'Steh Auf!' have a very catchy and upbeat rock vibe. I felt after this album really started to sink in with me that this is a pretty complete and consistent album. Very good melodic music with a definite edge to it!