Big City-Testify X ©2021 Frontiers Records
Big City is a melodic metal band based out of Norway and have released their new album via the Frontiers Records label. Musically, the band is very good. Songs are well written and when you look at the term melodic in melodic metal, it applies greatly here. There are some heavier tracks that have that infectious melodic element as well. There are some lighter tracks such as 'I Will Fall' that bring a good mix of ideas to the album. I really liked the choice of 'Testify' as a video track. That song represents the sound of this album for those who want to test it out. That video will be linked below with the YouTube link. Overall, this album is pretty consistent. The listen is pretty even throughout. The balance of intensity and melody will hook many listeners who come from both sides of this genre. More great Norwegian metal from this cool band!
Release Date: July 16, 2021
Pentesilea Road-Pentesilea Road ©2021 Pentesilea Road Music
For all of you looking for something a bit different, I have got one for you. Pentesilea Road is part progressive, post-rock and metal. I wasn't sure what to expect with this album, but came out of this one very happy. First of all, the band was new to me, but does feature Ray Alder and Mark Zonder who fans will remember from Fates Warning. The band was started by Vito F. Mainolfi back in 2014. It is hard in ways to describe their sound, but if I took a shot at it, I would thrown in Rush with a bit of Fates Warning. The music is very smooth and the transitions are awesome. There is a really nice clarity to the sound of this album and some of the guitar sounds are gritty at times. I did like the vintage rock feel that appeared at times. This is an excellent album that will be loved by progressive rock and metal fans alike. Recommended!
Release Date: February 26, 2021
Laurenne/Louhimo-The Reckoning ©2021 Frontiers Records
Here is an interesting collaboration. Netta Laurenne from Smackbound and Noora Louhimo from Battle Beast. These two vocalists work really well together. Both can sing elegant if the the music calls for it, but can also sing much more aggressive. This album is geared a bit more to the heavy side of the spectrum. Their vocal qualities and sound blend very well together. Sometimes you don't know if these collaborations will generate the right type of chemistry. In the case of a lot of Frontiers artists, the chemistry is quite good. Take a listen to 'Bitch Fire' and you get an idea. This song is like Judas Priest with female vocalists. I also really liked the track 'Hurricane Love'. It is always nice to have something a bit lighter to shake things up. This was a very cool album to listen to. The songs were well written and delivered with excellence. Hoping for more soon!
Release Date: July 9, 2016
Dee Snider-Leave A Scar ©2021 Napalm Records
I Guess Dee Snider was going to retire a few years back. Lucky for us fans, he chose not to. We get another dose of his brand of metal and once again it's quite good. If you were able to check out his previous album 'For The Love Of Metal' then you will pretty much know what to expect here. It's a pretty solid power metal sound. I have followed Snider from Twister Sister through his days of Widowmaker and now his solo stuff. He's been consistent in delivering great metal music for decades. This album is up to the usual standards and the band he used deliver the goods once again. When you release music as good as this, the fans are never going to want you to hang it up. There are a couple of videos via YouTube to check out, but if you are a fan of Snider, you already know you need this. Another very solid record. Highly recommended!
Release Date: July 30, 2021
Crowne-Kings In The North ©2021 Frontiers Records
Man, I almost missed this one, and that would have been a huge mistake. This is an amazing record. Crowne is a collaboration between some very talented musicians. Alexander Strandell from Art Nation, Jonah Tee from H.E.A.T., John Levén from Europe and Christian Lundqvist who played with The Poodles. Love Magnusson from Dynazty played the solos. You could say this is a Swedish supergroup. The music is excellent. It is geared to a melodic metal sound. The music is delivered in places to the heavier side of the genre, but with this group of musicians, you know that the melodic side will always be there as well. I think the band has a very cool vibe to them. Songs can be quite catchy without losing intensity. The melodic element makes these songs all very memorable. This is an album that will stick with you right away. Another easy recommend!
Release Date: June 18, 2021