Nordic Union-Animalistic ©2022 Frontiers Records
Ronnie Atkins has kept pretty busy in the last couple of years with his solo records and now another Nordic Union album with Erik Martensson. We get to once again hear the heavier side of Atkins with this record. The music on this album is probably close to the intensity of Pretty Maids, but with that Nordic union feel. I felt the record was really good. Songs are very well written with memorable characteristics. The chemistry between these two musicians is solid and has been through the three records. The album is also a complete listen where you'll enjoy everything here if you are into the more traditional side of the metal genre. The songs are also crafted with plenty of melodic elements as well. This is common when looking at the songs these two musicians have been a part of with this band as well as other bands and projects. More excellence!
Release Date: August 12, 2022
Five Finger Death Punch-Afterlife ©2022 Better Noise Music
It's been a bit bumpy for these modern metallers, but the results are always worth it. Songs began coming out as singles a bit back offering a taste of what to expect on the bands new album. The music has a very cool vibe to it this time. At the core, it's still Five Finger Death Punch with all of the heavy rhythms and tempo, but it's also a bit more. The band has evolved a little over time and the music sounds great. If you are looking for crushing heavy stuff, there is some of that, but the vibe overall is a bit different. I came away pretty happy with this album. Probably would rank it in my top three. There are a few tracks that have that slightly lighter feel that you heard on 'F8' with 'A Little Bit Off'. There is no denying who this band is however. If it was played for you without telling you who it is, you'd know. Another great record that will be in my rotation!
Release Date: August 19, 2022
Orianthi-Live From Hollywood ©2022 Frontiers Records
While Orianthi readies another studio record, we get a live album showcasing some good rock and blues based tunes through her career. The show sounds great and the track selection is really good as well. The show comes off smooth and intimate. Orianthi is a very good guitar player that has shown her ability to write and deliver good songs as well. When I mention smooth, it is not only meant to comment on the songs, but the guitar playing as well. Feels and sounds very natural. I really dig the blues tracks in this setlist. Probably my favorites of the show. You can buy the CD which will also have a DVD or if you prefer a HD version, the title is available on Blu-ray as well. I haven't viewed that yet, so will refrain from commenting for now, but this is a very fun live show from a very talented musician. Excellent!
Release Date: July 15, 2022
Dead City Ruins-Shockwave ©2022 AFM Records
I'll just say it, I did this record. There is a very cool groove going on with the songs on this album. Hard rock played an old school way with a few different vibes added in. If you take Guns 'N Roses and mix it with somebody like Monster Magnet, you'll have a feel for what some of this is like. At times there was almost a Corrosion of Conformity feel as well. Not the heavier side of C.O.C. , more of the groovy side. Each song ends up being a treat to listen to. Little things stand out from track to track. Take for instance the drums in 'The Sorcerer. Very catchy. The band hails from Australia and continues that gritty rock vibe that others before them have displayed. Bands like Kings Of The Sun, Airbourne, or maybe even AC/DC. The land down under has given us some excellent rock music through the years and Dead City Ruins is now a part of that!
Release Date: September 16, 2022
Generation Radio-Generation Radio ©2022 Frontiers Records
This album will go down as one of the more interesting collaborations on the Frontiers Records label. Members come from Chicago, Journey and Rascal Flatts and offer up a unique sounding AOR style. Songs are obviously well written. These members are all veterans and know what it takes to write music on a higher level. You do have a bit of a pop country feel here and there which I personally expected with Jay Demarcus being a part of the band. The album really is a good fusion of ideas coming from different parts of the rock and country genre's. Most of the music is fairly light and melodic. 'Time To Let Go' is the rocking tune on the album. Everything else is somewhere between this song and the more ballad themed songs. I thought the album was really good and it will be interesting to see what others think. Essential AOR!
Release Date: August 12, 2022