Metalmance’s Top 20 Albums of the Decade

20 of the best albums from 2010-2019.

Album of the Year lists aren’t enough this year. 2019 heralds the end of one of the best decades of metal. Emerging genres have really come to the fore in the past ten years (blackgaze anyone?) whereas we’re all surprised at how metalcore has survived and evolved. With technology advancing, the decade has also seen different consumer habits as well as advances in music technology as a whole. But that’s enough faff and chat. Without further ado, behold my Top 20 Albums of the Decade!


20. ORPHANED LANDAll Is One. Release date: 24 June 2013.

I’ve always enjoyed oriental music but hearing it in a metal context was a phenomenal concept to me. When I finally checked out Israel’s ORPHANED LAND I fell in love immediately. To me, they’re still the best ‘oriental metal’ band out there. They mix traditional instruments, metal elements and heartfelt messages so seamlessly it’s hard not to fall under their spell. All Is One is a superb example of the epic anthems they create to help reunite people of all faiths, race and genders. Tracks such as the title track, Freedom and Children emphasise their mission, all the while keeping tracks catchy and heavy. A must-listen for all.


19. SLEEPING WITH SIRENSFeel. Release date: 4 June 2013.

Now before you close this post and avoid my blog forever, hear me out here. Every track on SLEEPING WITH SIREN’s Feel is absolute gold. There’s a song for every occasion and emotion and it beckoned the start of their retreat from poisonous emo-pop-punk to the boring rock music they create today. With Feel they get it just right. Personally for me, this album dropped at a huge transitional period of my life so tracks such as Free Now, Congratulations and Satellites became anthems of this time. It’s not only teenagers who relate to Kellin Quinn and co. and their lyrics are more honest and relatable than many of their peers (FALLING IN REVERSE I’m looking at you).


18. TESSERACTOne. Release date: 22 March 2011.

I just had to include something by TESSERACT in this list. It was a tough choice between One and Polaris, but I chose One in the end as it was unlike anything I had heard in the metal world. Yeah there was PERIPHERY as well but for me, TESSERACT had a little something extra…mainly the vocal expertise of Daniel Tompkins. The first track I heard was The Impossible – Concealing Fate Part. 3 and I will never forget its melodies, djent and overwhelming atmosphere. In a way One signifies the innocence of the beginning of the djent genre before it became oversaturated by awful bands and copycats. Today it’s evolved into a whole new progressive metal beast but it’s good to look back on One and see how far metal has come.


17. AVASTMother Culture. Release date: 26 October 2018.

This decade saw the rise of blackgaze as a genre and it is one of the best things to have ever happened for metal. Mixing black metal and shoegaze to create highly emotive extreme metal is a dream come true. Only a handful of bands are getting the formula right and Norway’s AVAST is one of those bands. Last year’s debut album Mother Culture is a superb example of the heavier end of the genre. Tracks such as the title track and The Birth Of Man show some of the best that AVAST have to offer, but their instrumental tracks also trigger a strong emotional response. Powerful, climatic and devastating, Mother Culture is an important album.


16. MOTIONLESS IN WHITEReincarnate. Release date: 15 September 2014.


Metalcore is alive and well and MOTIONLESS IN WHITE have helped the survival of the gothic strain of it. Reincarnate saw the band at their most industrial, experimental and arguably…their catchiest. The guest features on this album are spot on, with the likes of Dani Filth, Maria Brink and Tim Skold making Reincarnate a goth’s wet dream. There is absolutely no filler on this album like a lot of their others, with tracks Break The Cycle and Wasp being some of the best keyboard-led metalcore for years. Now if only MOTIONLESS IN WHITE took the blueprint for The Final Dictvm for the latest albums…


15. TIMES OF GRACEHymn of a Broken Man. Release date: 18 January 2011.

I am one of those fans who think the new Jesse Leach-era KILLSWICTH ENGAGE has never surpassed what Leach and Adam D achieved with Hymn of a Broken Man. Yes, TIMES OF GRACE was always meant to be a more melodic and honest project, and remember Howard Jones was still in KILLSWITCH ENGAGE at this point, but Hymn of a Broken Man is one of the most beautiful albums created this decade and few have surpassed its melodic prowess. Live in Love, Where The Spirit Leads Me and Willing are some of the most stirring metal tracks this decade has seen. It’s just a shame the duo decided to lead the album with one of the weaker tracks, Strength in Numbers. Let’s hope they release a new album next year.


14. 65DAYSOFSTATICWe Were Exploding Anyway. Release date: 26 April 2010.


We Were Exploding Anyway was everything I wanted from 65DAYSOFSTATIC. The Sheffield post-rockers have always pushed the boundaries of the genre and have created the most phenomenal sounds. With this album, the band were their most ‘dancey’ and it even saw the inclusion of vocals on Come to Me, but they were very cleverly sliced and used as samples. Mountainhead, Crash Tactics and Piano Fights are some of the most genius songs 65DOS have written and the album as a whole is a delight from start to finish.


13. BLEEDING THROUGHThe Great Fire. Release date: 31 January 2012.

The Great Fire

Before the Orange County crew split up in 2014 (and reformed in 2018) the metalcore darlings dropped one of their finest albums to date, The Great Fire. This glorious slab of brutality incorporates every genre that BLEEDING THROUGH can execute so well, metalcore, hardcore, punk, black metal, melodic death metal…tracks like Goodbye To Death and Everything You Love Is Gone are perfect examples of their melting pot of styles. No metalcore band have achieved this again.


12. ABORTEDRetrogore. Release date: 22 April 2016.


I must admit I was a bit late to the ABORTED fandom, but once I finally got there I was besotted. Retrogore was my first exposure to the Belgian death metallers and it’s still my favourite. Everything just seems to gel on this record and the blackened elements which play a big part on 2018’s Terrorvision come to the fore on this record. Termination Redux and Divine Impediment are brutal gems, dark death metal at its best. The band aren’t showing any signs of slowing down, constantly evolving to remain one of the most terrifying bands out there.


11. NORDIC GIANTSA Séance of Dark Delusions. Release date: 20 April 2015.

nordic giants

NORDIC GIANTS are always best to experience live, but 2015’s masterpiece A Séance of Dark Delusions brilliantly captures the intense material this post-rock duo create. The guest vocalists on this album are all outstanding with standout tracks being Dissolve (with SATURDAY SUN), Rapture (with Beth Cannon) and the superb Futures Dark (with Nadine Wild-Palmer). Each tracks tells its own story and every track with vocals could easily be a radio hit, making NORDIC GIANTS your favourite secret.


10. EIGHTEEN VISIONSXVIII. Release date: 2 June 2017.


C’mon you knew EIGHTEEN VISIONS were going to make an appearance. This was the comeback of the decade for me. In true 18V fashion, their comeback album XVIII sounded unlike anything they have recorded before. The throwback references to earlier material (film samples, insects buzzing and the objects in the artwork) create a nostalgic record which still bludgeons you with modern, crunchy metal. Songs such as Oath and Live Again are the perfect tributes to the band’s roots and their late bassist Mick Morris (RIP). This is definitely an album for the loyal fans, but any lover of heavy, crushing metal will equally enjoy this album.


9. SOILWORKThe Ride Majestic. Release date: 28 August 2015.


The kings of melodic death metal, SOILWORK seem to get better with age. The Ride Majestic is a sublime album by the modern version of SOILWORK. This is an absolute belter from start to finish. Some old school fans look down on it for not being Natural Born Chaos 2.0, but this album is the full package. The vocals, lyrics, instrumentation, flow of the album are outstanding. When their peers are crashing and burning, SOILWORK have evolved and grown to be the melodic death metal darlings they are today. The title track, Death In General and the stirring finale Father and Son, Watching the World Go Down are some of my favourite songs of the decade. The fact that the band are still going strong is a blessing.


8. BLACK CROWN INITIATE Selves We Cannot Forgive. Release date: 22 July 2016.


Selves We Cannot Forgive was my first ever Album of the Year when I started this blog back in 2016. It has stood the test of time and cemented itself as one of my favourite progressive death metal records of all time. There has been a surge of progressive death metal bands in the past few years and BLACK CROWN INITIATE remain one of the best. This album exhibits the best aspects of the genre, with tracks such as Belie The Machine and For Red Cloud providing the brutality, and the title track and Again providing the soaring melodies. This album has it all.


7. DYSCARNATEAnd So It Came To Pass. Release date: 27 February 2012.

and so it came to pass

DYSCARNATE’s last album With All Their Might topped my AOTY list back in 2017, but I couldn’t have two of their albums in my top 20 of the decade so I’ve opted for their phenomenal second album And So It Came To Pass. If you’re still unfamiliar with this death metal trio (yes, they’re a trio and still heavier than most bands) then you are seriously missing a trick here. A band haven’t been this brutally groovy since…well…forever. And So It Came To Pass is a tremendous example of this, with The Promethean, In The Face of Armageddon and A Drone In The Hive bringing the hardest bangers of the album. Fingers crossed there will be a new album in the new year!


6. DREAMSHADEThe Gift of Life. Release date: 25 January 2013. 

gift of life

DREAMSHADE are always such a treat. These Swiss metalcore lovelies are still relatively unknown yet every album is an absolute blinder. 2013’s album The Gift of Life saw the band hit their stride. Photographs, Your Voice and Consumed Future are some of the best metalcore tracks you haven’t heard yet. Not only do DREAMSHADE write catchy songs but somehow their riffs are hella catchy too. A super slick and polished beast, DREAMSHADE are currently working on a new album and it promises to be another stellar effort.


5. DISTORTED HARMONYChain Reaction. Release date: 9 July 2014.

chain reaction

Discovering DISTORTED HARMONY was one of the best things I did in the past few years. Their progressive metal is fuelled by melodies and heart. Their second album Chain Reaction has just the right amount of technicality and melody to make it a beautifully balanced record. The charm and passion oozes out of this record with tracks such as Every Time She Smiles, Hollow and Natural Selection being some of the most stirring. With the ever-growing prog metal scene it takes something special to standout from the rest of the pack these days, these guys have got it.


4. MAYBESHEWILLI Was Here For A Moment, Then I Was Gone. Release date: 30 May 2011. 


So this is my third and final post-rock album in this list. I Was Here For A Moment, Then I Was Gone is my favourite of them all, for a number of reasons. The main one being, the album triggers the biggest emotional response of any album without vocals. It demonstrates the sheer, emotional power that rock instruments have. The melodies and climaxes are sublime, there’s no other post-rock albums quite like this one. Another reason why this ranks so highly is because MAYBESHEWILL were one of the pioneers of British post-rock and they are very sorely missed by fans. Just listen to the song Accolades, Critical Distance and Red Paper Lanterns and you’ll see what I mean.


3. EARTHSIDEA Dream In Static. Release date: 23 October 2015.


There are few bands who make a huge impact with their debut album like EARTHSIDE have. This is modern prog rock at its finest. But the thing that EARTHSIDE has that sets them apart from the rest is their expert musicianship. Each member is an incredibly talented musician and this talent can be heard in the ambition of their tracks. They execute their brilliance without any pretentious fluff and they scored some of the best vocalists in the business to elevate their tracks to new levels (see: Crater, the title track and Mob Mentality). With a new album being recorded as we speak, we can expect big things from the rising proggers.


2. MØLJord. Release date: 13 April 2018.


It’s probably no surprise MØL have ranked so highly on this list, considering they were my Album of the Year last year. It’s been warming to see Jord resonating with other people so strongly. Songs such as Storm, Bruma and Penumbra are some of the most striking blackgaze tracks of the past decade. Their shoegaze riffs, black metal vocals and chilling melodies add up to a spectacular album. I’ve already written so many words about this album but I never run out of praise to say about it. Emotion and soul drip from every note and syllable screamed. A phenomenal album by one of the most promising acts around.


1 . ANAAL NATHRAKHVanitas. Release date: 23 October 2012.


Behold, my album of the decade! ANAAL NATHRAKH have always been one of the best extreme metal acts from Britain, but 2012’s Vanitas shows the band at their most ambitious and polished. These songs are huge! I honestly don’t know where to start with this album. A lot of their albums prior (and after) have a few standout tracks and the rest are forgettable. Vanitas has banger after banger, with every track being its own individual beast you’ll remember for a long time to come. Yes, Forging Towards The Sunset and To Spite The Face are incredible, but can we just talk about album finale A Metaphor For The Dead? With one of the most climatic choruses the band have ever written, along with some of the most devastating riffs, it has gone down in history as my favourite album closer of all time. A strong statement I know but once you hear it for yourself, you may agree! Every great album needs a powerful closer and Vanitas concludes in such a roaring fashion, you feel compelled to start over again. After seven years no album has topped this for me.

Roundup – January 2019

It’s gonna be another good year metal fans!

Happy new year! Christmas might seem like a distant dream now but rest assured you can feel consoled by the promise of stellar releases in 2019. January has boasted some incredible album and single releases and February is looking even better. We’re going to be utterly spoilt this year! I’m excited to share my first roundup of 2019 with you, as usual you can read about my Top 3 albums of the month but I’ve also included my favourite singles of January to whet your appetite for the bands’ forthcoming albums!


Metalmance’s Top 3 Albums of January

The albums released this month have really set the bar high for the remainder of the year! January has seen a mixture of releases from the tech wizardry of BORN OF OSIRIS to the black metal madness of ASTROPHOBOS and my Top 3 are equally a mixed bag; melodic death metal, beatdown/deathcore and progressive metal. Who made my first Top 3 of 2019? Continue reading below!


soilwork - verkligheten - artwork

SOILWORKVerkligheten. Release date: 11 January

I am so relieved Verkligheten has been well received by SOILWORK fans and death metal fans alike. This album has been a grower on me and since writing my review I’ve fallen in love with this album even more. SOILWORK never fail to release a good album. Sure, they might be getting a bit mellower with age but Verkligheten features enough punishing riffs and elements to keep the most hardcore fan happy. All the tracks on here sound like SOILWORK but it’s not a repeat of 2016’s The Ride Majestic, proving the band are always reinventing themselves but never selling out. Fingers crossed the band still have a fair few albums in them yet. Read my fuller review of Verkligheten by clicking the link below.

Soilwork – Verkligheten review


last ten seconds of lifeTHE LAST TEN SECONDS OF LIFEMachina Non Grata. Release date: 11 January

This is utter filth. Their beatdown-infused deathcore is always a punishing force but with Machina Non Grata, they’ve really ramped the brutality up. Their filthy riffs mixed with their ferocious vocals is a terrifying mix but it absolutely slays. Tracks such as Axe To Grind and Psychophrenia obliterate the senses and considering it’s quite a lengthy album (14 tracks) THE LAST TEN SECONDS OF LIFE never ease the savagery. 2019 has already seen one of the most brutal albums of the year in the form of Machina Non Grata, it will be frightening to see which brutal release tops this. You have been warned.



EVERGREYThe Atlantic. Release Date: 25 January

Could this be the best EVERGREY album ever?! I must admit I wasn’t too pumped before I heard this because I loved their last album, 2016’s The Storm Within so much, but I was wrong to doubt the Swedish progressive metal band wouldn’t be able to top its predecessor. The Atlantic features bigger riffs, bigger choruses and bigger feels than ever before. It’s heavy and melodic in equal measures which EVERGREY have always been masters of, but somehow on The Atlantic the balance is just right. The band just seem to get better and better with each album and this record has a much fuller sound making EVERGREY that all more encompassing. You can thank me later for the recommendation.


Top Singles of January

I’ve lost track of all the kickass singles released this month! The list below is only chipping at the surface but may I present to you my favourite singles from January.


Getting ready to release their forthcoming album Eternal Forward Motion through Spinefarm Records, Woking’s heaviest export EMPLOYED TO SERVE have finally dropped their first single off the new album and it’s a corker! Force Fed is by far one of the ballsiest tracks the band have ever released, and with the added ‘clean vocals’ it is probably one of the most dynamic. It feels like EMPLOYED THE SERVE have quickened the pace, making Force Fed a beastly force to contend with. A potential album of the year? I believe so. Below the video is a link to my live review of the band’s headline show in Norwich last year.

Employed To Serve/Conjurer/God Complex/Nervewrecker live review


DREAMSHADEQuestion Everything

We all know I hold Switzerland’s DREAMSHADE in high regard so let’s cut to the chase here. With each new single they prove they cannot write a bad song. Question Everything is one hell of a catchy track with plenty of riffs and bold textures to keep every DREAMSHADE fan happy. The band still haven’t announced any album release plans yet but you can read more about what the band are all about and what they’re aiming to achieve in my interview and song review links below the video. For now, treat yourself and watch their hilarious new video for Question Everything!

INTERVIEW: Dreamshade

Dreamshade – On My Own



It’s been a while since I heard such a catchy hardcore song, but Norwich’s BASTARD have hit the nail on the head here with their newest single Snake Hips. 80s synths, gang vocals, sexy lyrics, beefy CANCER BATS-esque riffs…cor BASTARD you ain’t half spoiling us. The confidence and swagger displayed here is irresistible yet there is just enough rawness and metallic goodness to entice the most ‘hardcore’ of metal fans. In the age of overly technical wankery, sometimes it’s delightful to indulge in something more straight to the point…and something damn groovy. So stick on Snake Hips, grab your lover, and start movin’!


CARTOGRAPHSPeace Was Never Mine To Be Found

Danish post-rock band CARTOGRAPHS are nearing the release of their debut album Wilt & Blossom through Prime Collective on 1st March and their first single Peace Was Never Mine To Be Found is a stunning example of what’s to come. With blackgaze textures, soaring riffs and ambient passages, this single is the soundtrack to cold and tense January days. Recorded live and produced by Chris Kreutzfeldt who also produced the likes of CABAL, MØL and GHOST IRIS, you can guarantee the album will be top notch quality. Expect to hear more of CARTOGRAPHS this year.



Ahead of their appearance at Downsurge Festival, London hardcore band CHAOS REIGNS have dropped this absolute banger, Peripheral. The video was filmed in one of my favourite London venues, The Dome and the track sounds like the lovechild of THE GHOST OF A THOUSAND, EVERY TIME I DIE and CANCER BATS so you can probably gauge what a riot this band are. Fast, to the point and raw (oo-er) CHAOS REIGNS are another exciting addition to the blossoming UK hardcore scene. Catch these guys before they get huge!



Last year at Tech Fest, Glasgow’s FROM SORROW TO SERENITY absolutely blew me away so I’m really curious to see what’s in store when the band release their new album Reclaim on 22nd March through Long Branch Records. The album will be first featuring new singer Gaz King (ex-NEXILVA) and he’s on top form in this new single, We Are Liberty. One word springs to mind when listening to this track…RIFFS!!! I’d be surprised if this track and album didn’t propel the band into the big leagues as their potential is HUGE. Everything about this track is spot on, you’ll be silly not to check it out. A link to my review of their set at Tech Fest is below the video.

From Sorrow to Serenity in Tech Fest 2018 live review


EQUIPOISEWaking Divinity

Just when tech death fans could finally recover from the influx of stellar releases last year, American band EQUIPOISE drop their new single Waking Divinity and sends the tech death scene into meltdown. Fans of OBSCURA, BEYOND CREATION and INFERI will want to take note here as the parallels cannot be ignored (mainly because the band features members from the latter two bands and also an ex-THE FACELESS member) but the technicality and quality of the songwriting is absolutely staggering. Their forthcoming album Demiurgus will be released 8th March through The Artisan Era, but until then, make sure you indulge yourself in Waking Divinity. The bar of tech death in 2019 has been set high already.



Next month sees Florida band TRAITORS head out on tour with THE LAST TEN SECONDS OF LIFE and ANGELMAKER (both of whom are featured in this roundup as well) and have just demolished our senses with the devastating new single Left To Rot. The single is off their forthcoming album Repent, due for release on 25th February, and if the album is anything like this single then we are all in for a sore neck from banging our heads too hard. The down-tempo filth TRAITORS have belched absolutely pummels the senses and makes us surrender to its nasty beats. Don’t listen to this track alone.


THE ROYALState of Dominance

Metalmance faves THE ROYAL are almost ready to release their third album Deathwatch on 8th March through Long Branch Records and if the singles are anything to go by then we’re in for an exciting release! The band dropped new single State of Dominance this month and it features some irresistible keys giving it an air of SHOKRAN but with a metallic crunch. THE ROYAL have always had the ability to crossover genres but this sounds like THE ROYAL at their most versatile and most brutal yet. The video includes footage from many of their tours and shows from last year (their Tech Fest appearance being one!) and is a visual representation of their gruelling tour schedule. THE ROYAL are one of the hardest working bands I know, fingers crossed this will be the year it all pays off.



I must admit Hollow Heart, the new single by Vancouver metallers ANGELMAKER is the first time I have really be ‘wowed’ by the band. Hollow Heart was the first single of 2019 I got mega excited about and it’s still a thrill listening to it now. The unforgiving brutality is relentless and it’s got me all hot under the collar. Their forthcoming album is still shrouded in mystery but one thing’s for sure, it’s not going to be a disappointment. I needed this track to blow away the cobwebs from Christmas and when their next single drops then my body will be ready. Question is, are you prepared?

Dreamshade – On My Own

Single, self-release. 29 June 2018.

Out of the blue last Friday, Metalmance favourites DREAMSHADE dropped new single On My Own and it’s a corker. Taking the plunge and self-releasing this song, DREAMSHADE are taking a risk putting their new music out there themselves, but with top notch music such as this and a dedicated fan base, they’ll pull it off.

Old fans who were unhappy with the lighter output of last album Vibrant will no doubt be disappointed with this new song, but DREAMSHADE have evolved into a much bolder and a more vibrant (sorry) outfit. They have outgrown their metalcore roots and nailed a mature DREAMSHADE sound. Most bands never achieve a signature sound but this Swiss band achieved it by album number two. Now looking at releasing a fourth album, if On My Own is anything to go by then we might see their most ambitious release to date.

On My Own has that glorious signature DREAMSHADE sound courtesy of guitarist Fernando ‘Fella’ Di Cicco’s shimmering riffs. But it is vocalist Kevin Calì who captures attention in this single with his ballsy approach with his clean vocals now having an extra zest. Immediately you’re confronted with a strong rock song that would keep the radio listeners happy as well as metal fans happy. This winning formula reminds me of later ATRYEU, especially the album Lead Sails Paper Anchor, with it’s catchy yet heavy sound. The chorus sounds a little like a continuation of DREAMSHADE’s single Where My Heart Belongs, a fan favourite from their last album. This will make the transition between Vibrant and the next release a lot smoother for fans.

With the song title and their current situation of self-releasing their material, I can’t help but interpret this tune is their anthem of going it alone and allowing DREAMSHADE to be who they want to be, and create the music they want to make. By releasing On My Own on their own they are making a statement while testing the waters. A promising progression for the band, it will be exciting to see how their direction will evolve for their next full length. More please!



If you would like to read more DREAMSHADE related posts then follow the links below:

INTERVIEW: Dreamshade

Dreamshade + The Royal Live Review

Metalmance Top 20 Albums of 2016 featuring Dreamshade

Dreamshade – Vibrant Album Review

INTERVIEW: Dreamshade

An interview with the Swiss metallers about their music loves, touring the UK and the Swiss scene.

Interview 26 March 2017.

Nestled in a cosy corner of an Irish pub in Tufnell Park, DREAMSHADE members Kevin Calì (vocals), Fernando ‘Fella’ Di Cicco (guitar) and Gian-Andrea Costa (bass) are relaxed with pints of Guinness and are excited for their first ever London show. Conversing with friends and their old vocalist (who later provided guest vocals during their set), the guys were in high spirits and excitedly chatting about their European shows and their world tour for latest album Vibrant.

First UK tour, first time in London, what has taken you so long to come over here?!

Fella: It’s actually not really easy to come to the UK for a Swiss band. Actually nothing is easy for a Swiss band. We never really had a good proposal from the UK before, so this is the first time we’ve had a nice tour set for this part of the world.

Gian: For us it’s very good because much of the music we listen to comes from England, it’s a special country for music, especially rock and metal music. So it is a good place to be invited for a Swiss band who come from a very small city like Lugano which is where we come from, so it is a great pleasure to be here.

Yeah I was going to ask, because over here we’re not familiar with many Swiss bands, is there a scene over there and where do you fit in that?

Fella: There is one. But first of all Switzerland is a special country because it’s kinda divided in the middle, it’s not really united. Mostly because the language changes along the way. The northern part is really influenced by the Germans, they speak German. The western part is influenced by the French. We are from the south, we’re influenced by and speak Italian. So we live in the same country but we don’t really share the same music scene. We’re kinda divided but there is a music scene. It’s quite good, not really big obviously because it’s a small country but there are cities like Zurich which is in the centre of Switzerland which is pretty good. The clubs are also small, it’s a small country so you can’t expect 10,000 people for a show.

Gian: We get a lot of Summer festivals and open airs, it’s kinda a tradition. I think it’s the country in Europe with the most open airs during the summer.


Gian: Yeah it’s crazy, you can believe that! Every weekend during the summer and even during the week there are some open airs at the same time as other countries. It’s crazy for us Swiss people, it is usual for us to do an open air in the summer.

So how many are you playing this summer?

All: We don’t know yet!

Gian: We don’t know but we will have some festivals of course. And bands from all over the world come to Switzerland to play a festival. The biggest ones always come to Switzerland.

I did not know that!

Fella: The summer is actually really good.

Kevin: Also with the weather it’s usually pretty good which is good for festivals.

Gian: Traditionally you have the Montreux Jazz Festival which is the biggest in the world. So yeah, it is a special country for festivals.

Fella: For festivals yeah. [laughs]

So you were saying about the British bands that you’re into. Are there any British bands in particular that are your favourites or influences?

Fella: Yeah, from the classic ones like GENESIS and er…


Fella: THE POLICE definitely. STING.

Gian: ECHO AND THE BUNNYMEN, we’re big fans of British music in general.

Fella: Yeah we’re big fans of the rock style. But also the newer bands, even more heavy like ARCHITECTS, or LOWER THAN ATLANTIS, DON BROCO…

Kevin: BRING ME THE HORIZON. They’re really, really good. I mean, I could name like, a thousand groups.

Gian: Yeah, we like many! Many good bands here.

Fella: Especially for rock, but also for rap. I like some rap artists, there’s this guy called P MONEY. I don’t know where he’s from [London], but he’s really good. And also some female rap artists.

I remember you saying when you brought out Vibrant you wanted to get your rap and hip-hop love into that.

Fella: Yeah we’re really into that, especially the three of us.

Gian: I used to listen to Italian rap because it’s easy for the words and language you know.

Fella: It sounds good actually, the Italian language fits really well.

Gian: That’s why personally, I don’t listen to a lot of British hip-hop, or British rap…

Kevin: Or American.

Gian: Yeah we’re big fans of Italian rap and it’s come out in our music.

Would you add more into later records?

Fella: We can’t really tell. When it happened we did it with some songs like You Don’t Wanna Go and Sleep Alone, but we were just like, fucking around.

And it works!

Fella: [laughs] Yes, exactly! It was like I cannot think of anything else that fits on this particular piece. It’s just small pieces, here and there and it sounded good to us.

Gian: Because we love hip-hop music, also the hip-hop culture, but we are quite far away from that being in a rock band. But for Vibrant we asked a friend of ours to dj and do real scratches on the album because I was thinking if we were doing something with hip-hop then we’d do it in the real way. We wanted a real dj with real turntables to do the scratch sounds.

It does work on Vibrant! So, how are you enjoying the UK then?

Fella: I love it, I’ve already been here a few times before.

Kevin: It’s really, really good.

Are you enjoying the breakfasts? (The band had been uploading photos of their English breakfasts on social media during their tour)

Gian: Absolutely yes!

Fella: I’ve actually had too much so I really need to stop, because otherwise my cholesterol levels will go… [laughs]

Gian: Each morning since the beginning of tour we have been eating just English breakfasts…

Fella: It’s too many eggs, it’s too much!

You can never have too many eggs!

Fella: [laughs] Oh you can! When your heart stops beating…[Gian laughs]…that’s when you know!

Gian: But you know, we love beers, we love music, we love pubs, so the UK is perfect for us.

And we’re here in an Irish pub! You’re going to have to come back soon.

Kevin: We hope so.

So, you have quite a strong presence on social media and you’re in touch with fans. The DREAMSHADE community is so tight knit, how much does that fan community mean to you as a band?

Fella: I think we build that up, because we had a hard time in the beginning to come out and reach people. Actually the audience has always been the most important part of the project, because we really felt that everyone we could reach, even playing at smaller shows , like with five people in the front row, that was really good because we could actually get to them and they were so happy to see us and meet us, to talk with us, to say what they think about the music. That’s what really matters to us, when someone else can recognise what you’re doing is actually good and you’re doing the right thing. We may not be the most famous band in the world , but it’s really good because they feel like us when we play. So we’re really into this community style, social media managing and it’s working really good.

As it’s your first UK tour, how has the turn out been for each show?

Fella: It depends on the night, depends on the city. The last show we did in Derby…

Kevin: Last night in Derby was really good.

Yeah? Was that the best one so far?

Fella: Yeah because of the quality of the people.

Gian: Yeah everybody knew all the songs, a lot of sing alongs…

Fella: It’s really good for us, especially for the Vibrant songs because they’re new. It was surprising to see some of the songs we didn’t really push, actually people knew and were singing.

Gian: It’s really interesting because the song Sleep Alone…it’s quite strange for us because we don’t understand how important it is for people yet, but yesterday we saw many of the crowd singing it. It’s interesting because we love that song, it’s one of my favourites.

Fella: Also You Don’t Wanna Go was really surprising.

Gian: It was a nice place to test songs yesterday.

Fella: That’s so true, that’s so true. Manchester was really good too.

That’s always a really good city for music.

Fella: Yeah it was on a Tuesday so we didn’t really expect a lot of people, but the quality of the people like for Derby, everyone knew all the songs we played and that’s what really matters to us because we don’t want to have singles here and there and everyone knows the singles but for the whole set they’re not really having fun. But most of the people yesterday who we met [in Derby] told us they’re really into the albums. They’re in love with the albums, not just the songs and that’s what really matters to us because we really put a lot of effort in each song and they’re really different from each other, and the album shapes…that’s what’s really important to us.

Yeah, when you released a couple of tracks off Vibrant early, there was a lot of people like “are there gonna be any heavy songs”…

Gian: Yeah it’s a very different album, to listen to it and we also had some fun looking through the comments…

Kevin: It was funny…

Gian: For the people saying “oh no, where’s the heavy parts” on Youtube, and we’d think, wait, next week we’ll release another song and this will be heavy enough. So for us it was quite fun.

Fella: It was even funnier that most of the people that were commenting like “ah, this sucks, it’s too soft, it’s too rock, it’s too pop”…it is really pop actually haha. It was really funny to see those people commenting on the first song releases like You Don’t Wanna Go, which is really pop…they fell in love with the album. After they were like “ah, this is shit I’m never listening to DREAMSHADE again”. Then the album drops. You’ve got to see the album as a piece of art, not just the song. That’s our way. Maybe we’re doing everything wrong, whatever…[laughs]. We like it that way, so…

Gian: We love dynamics, we don’t believe in a kind of music where the beginning is the same as the end…

Fella: Same bpm, same notes…

Gian: This is also because the lyrics are quite different. There are different moods on the album, there are songs that are really positive in a certain way, there are personal stories about our families, and you can’t see all the songs in the same way…

Kevin: Yes [claps] makes no sense.

Fella: Just to be metal. It makes no sense.

I mean, even on The Gift Of Life [previous album] and Vibrant, each song does have its own sound. I get that. Maybe Vibrant is a bit heavier emotionally?

All: Yes.

Fella: That’s nice that you’ve noticed that. You know, the average metal listener is maybe looking for something, so then they find the bands that they like. But if you’re giving yourself through music, then you just need the right people to get it. It’s very difficult. But when they do, they’re hooked because they really enjoy what they’re listening to and they can see themselves through the lyrics and the mood of the songs and the ambiance, whatever. That makes sense for us.

So, after the UK tour, is there anywhere you haven’t played yet that you want to play?

Fella: Australia…United States…

Haven’t you played the United States yet?!

Fella: Ah actually yes, we’ve played there before, but never toured…not even Canada, Brazil or South America. South America would be really good…

Kevin: Mexico…

Every band, their fans are like “come to Brazil!”…

Fella: It’s a really big audience!

It’s a big country!

Fella: It’s a big country, a lot of people, but especially a lot of rock, a lot of punk rock. And metal. A lot. A lot of festivals like Rock In Rio.

Gian: We also know we have fans down there, we continue to receive proposals for gigs there. We just have to arrange the right time, the right moment, it’s all organisation with all the tours. But we just wait for that. We’re almost ready to do that.

Guys, thank you for you time, enjoy the rest of the tour and your breakfasts!

Dreamshade + The Royal

Boston Music Room, London. 26 March 2017.

There was quite a lot of hype surrounding tonight. DREAMSHADE had finally made it to the UK and this was their first ever London show. DREAMSHADE fans are a fiercely loyal bunch and this small community had found its way to Boston Music Room to give the Swiss metalcore band the warm welcome they deserved.

Getting to the venue just as THE ROYAL kicked into their set, these rising stars of Dutch metalcore were pulling out all the stops, making it impossible to tear your eyes away to get to the bar. Frontman Sem Pisarahu commanded the crowd’s attention with his ferocious delivery and infectious energy. The rest of the band were also on fine form, jumping in time with a hardcore punk attitude. Fella from DREAMSHADE jumped on stage for guest vocals which really got the room  moving. Winning over new fans tonight with their absolutely tight delivery, THE ROYAL will no doubt cause a bigger stir in the scene. Be sure to check them out at Tech Fest in July!

Keeping the energy up by opening with the storming It’s Over, DREAMSHADE fed off their fan’s vibrancy (pun intended) and in return put on a performance worthy of a venue triple its size. Mostly playing tracks from last year’s Vibrant, the modest crowd shouted back every word, clearly pleasing the band as there were smiles all round for the remainder of the night. Playing old gems like Photographs and Consumed Future really sent the crowd into a frenzy, but London was in for one heck of a treat. Before erupting into Wide Awake, former vocalist Iko joined the band on stage, sending old fans into meltdown. DREAMSHADE were always teasing something special for London, but no one could have predicted jumping along to both Iko and current vocalist Kevin Calì sharing vocals. Newer tunes still went down well with Dreamers Don’t Sleep and Autumn Leaves having the loudest crowd sing-alongs. The band sounded just as good live as they do on record, oozing talent and professionalism yet still bringing the fun by joining the crowd and rocking out with us. Tonight was one of those nights when everyone looked super chuffed after the set. Every person in the room was in high spirits and the band stuck around to chat and take photos, clearly appreciating their fans, some of whom had travelled many miles to catch their first London show. It had been worth it, a very special night indeed.

Metalmance Top 20 Albums of 2016

A great year for metal! Who took the top spot?

Welcome to the first Metalmance Top 20 Albums! 2016 has been a hell of a year for metal this year, with lots of reunions and surprise releases. Not all entries will have a blog link due to Metalmance only being a third of a year old. So let’s get straight to it…


sleeping  No. 20  CANDIRIA – While They Were Sleeping                     

It’s good to have CANDIRIA back isn’t it? While They Were Sleeping is the band’s eighth album and their first on Metal Blade and it’s a reminder of the band’s refreshing metal mix of hardcore, prog, hip hop and jazz. If you’re new to CANDIRIA, then this album is a good start. Check out the link below to see what Metalmance said about the band’s video for the title track.

Weekly Roundup #4


a3458996965_10  No. 19  INCITE – Oppression

You can always rely on INCITE to provide some straight-up, relentless metal, and with their fourth album Oppression, the band continue to carve their own niche in the scene. This isn’t easy when you’re the stepson of metal god Max Cavelera, like frontman Richie Cavalera is, but INCITE are more than capable of thriving on their own. With an intense live show to match, INCITE should be one of your bands to watch.


kvelertaknattesferd  No. 18  KVELERTAK – Nattesferd

Every KVELERTAK release is an exciting bag of rock n roll, black metal and punk. This, being the Norwegian’s third album is no different but includes a glorious classic rock tinge to proceedings without losing any the original ferociousness the band are known for. Still raw, fast and exciting, KVELERTAK are still on the rise.


mortiis_cover  No. 17  MORTIIS – The Great Deceiver

Another welcome return in 2016 was MORTIIS with their new album The Great Deceiver. After a hiatus of almost five years, the new material was like reuniting with an old, industrial friend. The album has the timbre of Downward Spiral era NIN, but with a contemporary twist, all resulting in a pretty impressive album for the revival of industrial metal.


14040057_10154510824634759_8534743349618738043_n  No. 16  NOCETM – Haeresis

Stumbling upon Spanish extreme metallers NOCTEM was an excellent discovery this year. Their album Haersis is still bludgeoning the ears of Metalmance. Read a snippet of the review below and follow the link to the full review.

“Introducing NOCTEM, a black metal band that have more tricks up their sleeve than you might first perceive. They sound like all of your favourite extreme bands rolled into one delicious, morbid package, each track offering a new twist to proceedings.”

NOCTEM – Haeresis Review


nails_-_you_will_never_be_one_of_us  No. 15  NAILS – You Will Never Be One of Us

Probably the most unforgivingly brutal release of the year, NAILS winded metal fans around the world with the absolutely punishing You Will Never Be One of Us. Twenty minutes of sheer face-ripping, ear-pummelling metal, it never gives up for a second. This is how metallic hardcore punk should be done.


annisokay  No. 14  ANNISOKAY – Devil May Cry

One of Germany’s most promising metal exports, ANNISOKAY makes metalcore exciting again with their pure passion for their craft. Not afraid to include massive choruses, this young band can only get bigger with their irresistible melodies and crushing riffs.

“With the aggression of newer PARKWAY DRIVE and the melodic sensibilities of bands like SAOSIN and SILVERSTEIN, ANNISOKAY will appeal to fans across the melodic metal spectrum.”

ANNISOKAY – Devil May Care Review


lacunacoildeliriumcd  No. 13  LACUNA COIL – Delirium

Italy’s finest never disappoint. Still churning out masterpiece after masterpiece, LACUNA COIL have set their own bar high in the form of Delirium, their eighth album and heaviest to date. Based on narratives surrounding the abandoned asylum near to where the band live, the album is full of intensity and emotion. It still packs a punch over half a year later.

“The subject matter helps to shape the band’s most intense album to date with opener House of Shame bursting in kicking and screaming with the heaviest riff and vocals we’ve heard from LACUNA COIL in a long, long time.”

Weekly Roundup #2


textures-phenotype-artwork  No. 12  TEXTURES – Phenotype

Four long years since their last release, TEXTURES finally dropped fifth album Phenotype back in February and it’s still a rewarding progressive metal album. Vocalist Daniël de Jongh is proving his worth with the absolute belters of New Horizons and opener Oceans Collide. Recorded simultaneously with the album Genotype which will be released next year, don’t be surprised if TEXTURES also feature on the list next year.


wallsofjerichonoonecd  No. 11  WALLS OF JERICHO – No One Can Save You From Yourself

Yet another band returning from a hiatus, Detroit’s WALLS OF JERICHO released No One Can Save You From Yourself and it is a perfect return to form. The hardcore greats are as ferocious and as angry as ever and could easily show younger bands how it’s done. Welcome back.

“Candice Kucsulain, along with the rest of the band WALLS OF HERICHO, delivers such straight up, no nonsense hardcore punk, it’s mind boggling this hardcore troupe from Detroit do not receive more credit and recognition.”

Weekly Roundup #3


brutai  No. 10  BRUTAI – Born

2016 finally saw the release of the debut album by London’s BRUTAI. It was well worth the wait, with its refreshing approach to the melodic metal genre making the band one to watch. With big riffs, big ideas and big choruses, BRUTAI pulls it all off with aplomb and passion. One of the UK’s brightest metal hopes.

“The future of British metal has indeed been born.”

BRUTAI – Born Review


a0651344947_10  No. 9  ANAAL NATHRAKH – The Whole of the Law

A band who never disappoint, ANAAL NATHRAKH returned this year with ninth album The Whole of the Law, which is quite possibly the band’s most punishing album to date (if that’s even possible). The brutality ramps up with each song, making The Whole of the Law an intense listen which rewards you with mutilated ears.

“A new ANAAL NATHRAKH album is always a joyous occasion – if joyous means the same as the sensation of having your face battered off by a shovel.”

ANAAL NATHRAKH – The Whole of the Law Review


dreamshade  No. 8  DREAMSHADE – Vibrant

A late treat in the year, DREAMSHADE’s third album Vibrant is a gloriously melodic affair with a whole lot of heart. Their passion for their music overspills in each song, ensuring you get wrapped up in their infectious metal and melodies. A great discovery for Metalmance this year.

“An album which shimmers with melodic metal perfection, this third offering from Swiss band DREAMSHADE is indeed a vibrant effort.”

DREAMSHADE – Vibrant Review


evergreythestormwithincd  No. 7  EVERGREY – The Storm Within

EVERGREY…dark, emotional, intelligent, melodic, heavy, progressive…and catchy too. Is this an album with everything?? Guest appearances from Floor Jansen? Check. Songs with a big heart? Check. Dark and moody atmosphere? Check. Intense and beautiful video accompaniments? Check!

“If you want some progressive metal which you can belt out around the house, then look no further than EVERGREY.”

Weekly Roundup #9


vola-inmazes-album-art  No. 6  VOLA – Inmazes

Technically a reissue through Mascot Label Group, it’s such a treat of an album it would have been rude not to have featured it in this year’s list. VOLA’s Inmazes features most of the year’s catchiest melodies and big choruses, with Stray The Skies still owning the most memorable keyboard hook in recent memory. A young band full of promise and potential, VOLA are ones to watch for sure.

“The young band from Copenhagen have already fine tuned their sound which incorporates chugging guitars giving way to soaring vocals and catchy keyboard hooks.”

VOLA – Inmazes Review


animalsasleadersmadnesscd  No. 5  ANIMALS AS LEADERS – The Madness of Many

Modern metal legends ANIMALS AS LEADERS dropped The Madness of Many a month ago and it is captivating and mesmerising audiences worldwide. Just listening to a few seconds of opener Arithmophobia will make you understand why. An album bursting with a stupid amount of musical talent, ANIMALS AS LEADERS have outdone themselves again. How will they ever be able to top this?

“The diversity of sounds on this album demonstrates how far the band push the boundaries of progressive music and composition itself, as far as utterly breaking free of limitations and creating the most mesmerising music which doesn’t seem possible by man.”

Weekly Roundup #11


0045778746064_png_1200x1200_q90_crop  No. 4  SAOSIN – Along The Shadow

Another band who ended their hiatus and released an album this year. With Along The Shadow, SAOSIN have created a modern, post-hardcore classic. There was always a risk of sounding run-of-the-mill or sounding too similar to CIRCA SURVIVE, but the band thankfully pulled out all the stops and released one of the year’s most surprising highlights. Heart wrenching songs, big riffs and even bigger choruses, they’re the kings of the new post-hardcore generation.

“The album is one hot nostalgic trip to the glory days of post-hardcore, but somehow they sound timeless.”

Weekly Roundup #13


ihsahn-arktis-e1450461123634  No. 3  IHSAHN – Arktis

Ihsahn needs no introduction. This year he almost reached perfection with Arktis, an album so full of twists and turns in extreme styles it is spectacular from start to finish. There are plenty of unexpected elements which feature in the album, including SHINING’s Jørgen Munkeby providing a cheeky bit of saxophone on Crooked Red Line and LEPROUS’ Einar Solberg providing the stunning vocals on closer, Celestial Violence. A modern classic, Arktis will astound listeners for many years to come.


635902518368165120  No. 2  PORT NOIR – Any Way The Wind Carries

Possibly the most exciting discovery for Metalmance this year, PORT NOIR is a band which is almost impossible to pigeonhole. With songs bordering on pop, then others edging towards CULT OF LUNA-esque riffs (see Black From the Ink) each song is a different melodic beast. Elements of funk, jazz and metal complete with the distinct vocals of frontman Love Andersson, make Any Way The Wind Carries a rewarding listen each time. For a trio, PORT NOIR have such a rich and deep sound you wonder at how they haven’t already cracked the mainstream. An album so diverse and well executed, Any Way The Wind Carries deserves its high ranking in this list.

“The level of melodic goodness doesn’t detract from the heaviness on the album, instead you feel like you’re listening to all of your favourite genres as they are all sprinkled into one tasty package.”

Weekly Roundup #5



No. 1  BLACK CROWN INITIATE – Selves We Cannot Forgive 

And here we have it! Metalmance’s album of the year! BLACK CROWN INITIATE’s Selves We Cannot Forgive has been on frequent rotation since its release. A truly spellbinding example of progressive death metal and its very best. An absolute beast of an album, it pummels you with its devastating riffs and ferocious drumming, then revives you through the utterly compelling clean vocals. The band mix slow and brooding, with fast and aggressive with such zeal the album is a seamless triumph of modern metal. Standout track Belie the Machine pulls you in with its entrancing introduction, you think you’re safe for a few minutes, then the band absolutely crush you with a catastrophic riff GOJIRA would be proud of. The title track shows the more melodic side of BLACK CROWN INITIATE, with its soaring vocals and piano accompaniment. A diverse and ambitious album, it deservedly owns its place at the top spot.

“This, being the band’s second album released through eOne Music, is such a varied beast with  each track harnessing its own surprising little nugget.”

Weekly Roundup #4

Weekly Roundup #13

Unlucky for some, but lucky for you metal lovers.

Band to watch: SET ON END. Think New Zealand is all about The Lord of the Rings, Flight of the Conchords and sheep? Guess again. Prog metallers SET ON END are well on their way to stamping their homeland on the progressive metal map. Their debut album The Dark Beyond was realised in July through Artery Recordings but new video for single Claw At The Throne dropped this week, reminding everyone why they deservedly demand your attention. On the TEXTURES end of progressive metal, previous singles Dissent and Dark Beyond also demonstrate the band’s knack of mixing groove into proceedings. With energetic aggression in the form of captivating frontman Jesse Cleaver and the riff genius of guitarists Matt Borsos and Gerry Dunn, SET ON END also somehow incorporate hardcore-punk worthy breakdowns to give their music an added punch. Brutal, groovy and progressive, what are you waiting for? Delve in!


Video to watch: DREAMSHADE. Today, Metalmance favourites DREAMSHADE dropped video for new single Where My Heart Belongs to accompany the release of their new album Vibrant. The content of the video matches perfectly the love and feedback the band have received from their fans already today. With footage of the band touring the world and playing many shows and festivals, it’s obvious the DREAMSHADE community are a passionate lot; with their fans showing the band some love but also the band clearly appreciating them and giving the love back through their energetic performances and attention they give on social media. The song title has connotations of returning to a loved one after months of touring, but maybe, just maybe it stands for the band returning to where they belong – on the road and amongst their fans. With tunes as strong as their fan base, DREAMSHADE are only set to get stronger.


In the stereo: SAOSIN. When Anthony Green reunited with SAOSIN at the tail end of 2014 I think everyone rejoiced with the news. As good as the other vocalist Cove Reber was (the debut self-titled album is still an emo classic) SAOSIN with Anthony Green is post-hardcore heaven. In May this year the band released their first full length album with Green (he had only appeared on their debut EP before) in the form of the stunning Along the Shadow. The album kicks in with the incredible The Silver String, raw emotion clearing the way to soothing melodies. The album is one hot nostalgic trip to the glory days of post-hardcore, but somehow they sound timeless. Ideology is Theft has probably the most climatic post-hardcore middle eight seen this side of 2010. An album full of beautiful moments and heart wrenching melodies it’s no surprise Along the Shadow still gets frequent spins in the stereo.


Band to rediscover: DEVIL SOLD HIS SOUL. It’s been a while since we’ve heard from these metalcore greats from London, but today they released their new track The Reckoning on Bandcamp for a good cause. In August, fellow metal musician and friend of the band, Tom Searle from ARCHITECTS sadly passed away. All proceeds from The Reckoning will be donated by DEVIL SOLD HIS SOUL to The Martlets Hospice as a tribute to Tom Searle’s legacy and to help others with a terminal illness and their families. A good cause by a great band, The Reckoning is also an exciting slab of atmospheric metal which is hopefully a good indicator of the crushing material we could expect from the band next year. Follow the links below to hear the single and buy off Bandcamp or to donate directly to the JustGiving page.


Dreamshade – Vibrant

Label: Artery Recordings. Release date: 9th Dec 2016.

An album which shimmers with melodic metal perfection, this third offering from Swiss band DREAMSHADE is indeed a vibrant effort. Focusing lyrically on relationships whether romantic or familial, the band explore the ability to grow and learn from the inevitable shifts in relationships and friendships. This feeling of inner strength and growth is matched by the instrumentation, a strong and mature sound while remaining unpredictable throughout the record. With unexpected twists and turns in styles, DREAMSHADE’s music can be seen as a reflection of the unforeseen changes in life.

Vibrant kicks off with blinding opener Autumn Leaves, a song which demonstrates the band’s knack of juxtaposing metalcore with pop punk elements. Crushing riffs are accompanied with bittersweet keys while vocalist Kevin Calì screams and sings his lament for a broken relationship. But when autumn leaves fall, new ones eventually take their place, and this hope and regrowth is expressed through Calì’s declaration of self-reparation in It’s Over. A stripped back beginning, it soon erupts into a massive chorus which is sure to become a firm fan favourite.

Things take a bit of a LINKIN PARK-esque turn for track Don’t Wanna Go, with rap, electronic elements and a killer chorus, all executed with aplomb creating an emotionally raw track. The band then turn towards their metalcore influences for Dreamers Don’t Sleep, which once again expertly combines raw and clean vocals to a standard of later KILLSWITCH ENGAGE and SOILWORK. This heaviness continues into The World In My Hands but the pace picks up, creating a positive force of facing fears which will most certainly make the song a future anthem for DREAMSHADE fans.

An unexpected gem is found in the form of Another Me Another You which evolves from a blissfully laidback tune into almost a power ballad with its blistering lead guitar. It’s these small shifts in style which make DREAMSHADE an exciting band to listen to. Oceantides is also a standout track, with fierce guitars and a soaring melody, it’s a perfect example of the band’s own brand of metalcore.

Bringing the album to a close is the heart wrenching Father, a song which seems to incorporate all emotions which makes a fitting finale to what is an emotionally exposing album. DREAMSHADE have a created a solid body of material with Vibrant, a rewarding listen which displays the potential of DREAMSHADE hitting the mainstream and making it their own.

Weekly Roundup #10

Number 10 Astounding Street

Band to watch: DREAMSHADE. In the run up to the release of their album Vibrant on December 9th, this Swiss band have been teasing fans with previews of new tracks which are, put simply, something special. Introducing DREAMSHADE then, a band hard to pigeonhole so let’s just stick with ‘melodic metal’, but after you listen to these talented chaps you’ll soon realise they experiment with a vast array of genres in their music. Most recent preview Up All Night has a bright pop punk riff, but soon evolves into a blissful hard rock tune. Catchy, yet mature, this band know how to take their influences and turn them into their distinct style of heavy music. Dreamers Don’t Sleep has a definite melodic death metal vibe, sounding similar to later KILLSWITCH ENGAGE and a softer SOILWORK. A little bit of LINKIN PARK can even be heard here, with Kevin Calì’s vocals turning a bit Chester Bennington at times. But this is most certainly DREAMSHADE. An exciting mix of heaviness and raw with clean and melodic, they break the mould by remaining unpredictable. With teasers such as this, Vibrant is set to be a corker of a release. 2017 will most certainly be a big year for them. Don’t miss out.


Video to watch: TWELVE FOOT NINJA. Finally receiving the recognition they deserve in the UK, this metal band from Australia always treat us with entertaining videos, and this video for Sick is no different. Adopting a Stranger Things vibe, this is 9 minutes of pure WTF accompanying the band’s unique brand of funk-fusion-prog-infused metal. The video begins with TWELVE FOOT NINJA watching a movie which also features the band. Their car breaks down and they are approached by a hella creepy fella and all hell breaks loose from there. A morbidly funny video, expect blood, chainsaws and a twist at the end! So risk it for a biscuit and giggle at a bit of TWELVE FOOT NINJA.


In the stereo: EARTHSIDE. It’s hard to believe EARTHSIDE’s debut album A Dream In Static has been out for over a year now. It’s also hard to believe it is a debut! The sheer talent and passion displayed on this album makes the record a rewarding listen each time. Each note and lyric is carefully composed and considered, making A Dream In Static a rich variety of sounds and layers. Cinematic in style, this metal band from New Haven have a few tricks up their sleeve with some impressive guest vocals from the likes of Lajon Witherspoon (SEVENDUST), Bjorn ‘Speed’ Strid (SOILWORK) and Dan Tompkins (TESSERACT). Each track has its own unique EARTHSIDE stamp on it, from the blissful opening of The Closest I’ve Come with Frank Sacramone’s incredible keyboard lead, to the heart wrenching closer of The Contemplation of the Beautiful with the vehement vocals of Eric Zirlinger. A standout track from the album is Mob Mentality, a composition by guitarist Jamie Van Dyck, it not only features the vocals of Lajon Witherspoon, but also instrumentation from the Moscow Studio Symphony Orchestra, making the track the most cinematic in style. This doesn’t even scratch the surface of what this album has to offer; an expansive and emotionally deep album, it will take you on a journey to the depths of your soul and to the edges of your mind. A dream in static indeed.


Back to rediscover: MAYBESHEWILL parted ways in April, but recently teased fans with news of a collaboration with design and production house WeTheConspirators. This will ultimately be a going away present to fans, but any MAYBESHEWILL material is always gratefully received. This instrumental band from Leicester were always a special gem in the post-rock world. With an impressive back catalogue, the band ended their career on a high with Fair Youth but it was 2011’s album I Was Here For A Moment, Then I was Gone which was the most critically acclaimed, with soaring tracks such as Accolades and Red Paper Lanterns. MAYBESHEWILL successfully mixed samples and electronics with uplifting and spectacular instrumentation. Their live performances were something to behold as well, in a similar vein to 65DAYSOFSTATIC, their live shows were blinding and the band members were always approachable and pleased to meet fans after. 2008’s album Not For The Want Of Trying propelled the band into the wider rock world, with songs such as Paris Hilton Sex Tape and the sample-tastic self-titled track, this album was a milestone in the British post-rock scene. Fans will always hope MAYBESHEWILL might release more material, maybetheywill.