heavy metal

Confession time, kids. I have long been, since my college days, a closet Saliva fan.

We metal fans are not above snobbery. We love our pedigrees as much as any blue-blood. When a new band comes along, we tend to look and see who the members may have played with in the past, hoping for an indicator of quality before we ever hear a note.

By this point, the saga of Kyuss has been fairly well reported. To tell the story fully would require a documentary film of appreciable length, a flowchart with Cliffs Notes and a very long afternoon.

I had the good fortune to come of age during the "golden era" of metal.

Sometimes, all it takes is a moment.

My top ten list last year was incomplete, because Monsterworks' “Album Of Man” straddled the new year and now exists in it's own little world, unattached to any year in particular.

Dan Swano is as much an extreme metal legend as you can get. From his work with the seminal Edge Of Sanity, to his years spent behind the desk making every band he worked with sound better than they ever had before, he is one of the key figures in the history of European extreme metal.

So here we are again. Steve Souza, singer, songwriter, band leader, legend, metalhead, sports fan, father and horror aficionado extraordinaire, is back with another record. Not content to rest on the laurels of Hatriot's recent debut "Heroes of Origin," the man known as Zetro is determined to take the nearly unprecedented step of releasing two records inside a calendar year. The always outspoken and never shy Souza sat down with me again to talk about the new record, the present stage of metal, the latest Slayer developments, the rumors surrounding Dublin Death Patrol, the quandary of Hatriot, the Oakland Raiders and as ever, horror. It was, as you might imagine, a long conversation. In an interviewing first for me, Zetro started the conversation off without prompting. Read on and enjoy!

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What can I say about "Winter Kills", the latest release from "Devildriver", except "holy crap!". These guys are really pissed off. "Winter Kills" is heavy handed, aggressive and at times, dare I say, even melodic.

If you’ll be kind enough to indulge for a moment, I’m probably about to sound like the metal Garrison Keillor.