Godsmack-When Legends Rise ©2018 Godsmack/BMG
It makes you nervous when you hear that a band is taking it's direction to a more radio friendly sound. With 'When Legends Rise' this is only partially the case and honestly, there's nothing to worry about. The album does have some heavy rockers mixed into the line up and the balance overall is pretty good. I have personally spent a fair amount of time with this album and came to the conclusion that I definitely like it. Even though tracks such as 'Bullet Proof' or the lighter 'Under Your Scars' definitely feel different than the bands earlier material, it just feels like the bands sound is not only evolving, but broadening. You still have enough of the older sound in places to keep you comfortable. My recommendation with this album is go into it with an honest ear. Make your determination based on your own listen. I came away feeling pretty good about it!
Release Date: April 27, 2018
Kobra and the Lotus-Prevail II ©2018 Napalm Records
And now we have 'Prevail II' by this great female fronted metal act. The first 'Prevail' album offered up some very good metal and a lot of the same qualities that made that record really good are evident here as well. The sound as a whole across records works very well. The music has good intensity and I liked the tightness of each track. The album contains 11 tracks and one bonus track. The bonus track is an acoustic version of 'Let Me Love You'. It's hard to pin down which version I like better. The track sounds great either way. I thought the Fleetwood Mac classic 'The Chain' was done different, but well. I also like the feel of the instrumental 'Ribe'. It's a cool way to lead into 'My Immortal' which is another album highlight. This album is solid start to finish which is exactly what I expected as this band is very good.
Release Date: April 27, 2018
Stryper-God Damn Evil ©2018 Frontiers Records
The latest chapter from the Christian rockers is another solid outing with some pretty intense moments. The album opens with the heavy track 'Take it to the Cross'. When I say heavy, I mean heavy as in Fight. You remember them. Halford's band that had an industrial edge although this song doesn't have that, but it definitely reminded me of Fight. Other tracks on the album are gritty, heavy and at times even atmospheric. Stryper has been getting it right for a long time and once again, they got it very right. It's amazing with as long as this band has been on the scene, they seem to be able to keep it fresh and push the limits of their creativity. I do like the fact that the band kept a bit of a raw feel to the music. This kind of music translates well to the live show and this album should be no exception. Also, Michael Sweet's vocals are off the charts. Recommended!
Release Date: April 20, 2018
Shinedown-Attention Attention ©2018 Atlantic Records
When it comes to modern rock bands, Shinedown is one of my very favorites. One of the reasons I like this band so much is their ability to evolve their sound yet still keep you interested. It's a tricky thing to pull off, and they do it well. 'Attention Attention' is another phase in their evolving sound. The first track I heard was 'The Human Radio'. Kind of a different sound, but very, very catchy and definitely memorable after one listen. I guarantee you'll go back time and time again. This characteristic of the album holds true with most of it. It definitely sounds Shinedown as they have a sound all of their own. It's just a new sound in ways and at the same time has that familiar feel. This update in their sound doesn't go as far as what happened with Theory of a Deadman. Fans know Shinedown never release the same record twice. Essential!
Release Date: May 4, 2018
Overkill-Live in Overhausen ©2018 Nuclear Blast Records
This review covers the blu-ray/cd version of the band's latest live package. What sets this one apart is the band playing 2 complete albums. 'Horrorscope' and 'Feel the Fire' are played in their entirety. 'Horrorscope' is one of my favorite albums by the band. I didn't realize it was the highest charting, but I'm not surprised either. That album was a banger. The band deliver it magnificent as they do with 'Feel the Fire'. The first album was a good historical thing to add to the show. As far as the blu-ray, it looks really good overall. Probably the best way to see the show aside from being there live. I tend to like my live shows in video format mostly, but do like these packages that include both compact discs and DVD's or blu-rays. This is an absolutely great set featuring two of the bands best works from their earlier years. Very nice package!
Release Date: May 18, 2018