heavy metal

How to describe a show that's thirty years in the making? An event so domineering it was called, without hyperbole, the largest metal show that the East Coast has ever seen. It was the culmination of a timely anniversary, fan support and the consistently discussed dream of all metal fans world wide. We asked and eventually, with some prodding, New York City's collective thrash prayer was answered.

So, the Big 4 and roughly fifty thousand of their closest friends came by all roads and paths to Yankee Stadium for an evening of heavy metal history and fury.

I was first introduced to Edguy during my college years, when "Mandrake" was the band's signature album. That album was possessed of fire and heart, armed with a devil-may-care attitude and a new age power metal swagger.

Gather round, fans of Fates Warning! Jim Matheos and former vocalist John Arch have put together a six-cut record of entirely new progressive metal material under the banner of brand new side project Arch/Matheos. "Sympathetic Resonance" lies somewhere between EP and full album, and was rendered from material that Matheos had written with preconceptions of another Fates Warning album. The musician goes on to say that he and Arch began working the songs one at a time, never really intending a full-length debut, but arriving at that destination in time.

First and foremost, “Inner Monster Out” is not Brazilian heavy metal as we traditionally think of it. Loaded with melodic artistry and accessible structures, Shadowside ignores the looming legacy and idiomatic trappings of their countrymen such as Sepultura or Torture Squad. What is left in place is a sound more akin to a cross between Lacuna Coil and not-quite-Iron-Maiden. That comparison has surprisingly little to do with the fact that Shadowside, like Lacuna Coil, has a female lead singer.

Emerging from Wales, Anterior arrived on the scene in 2007 with their debut album "This Age of Silence." Critics worldwide credited the band's acumen, and heavy metal pundits were now watching Anterior closely on radar. Widespread touring in support of acts like The Black Dahlia Murder, DevilDriver and Dragonforce increased the band's notoriety, all underscored by their affiliation with Metal Blade Records.

Cover songs can be a tremendously difficult wire to walk. This is even more true when covering songs that are beloved in the eyes of the general public in their original incarnation.

“Shallow Bay” is a greatest hits album that represents the full catalogue of Breaking Benjamin. Now, it should be noted that includes both the good and bad parts of their legacy.

It’s also more than that. To obtain the deluxe edition of this release is to gain ownership of a double disc loaded for bear with rarities, live cuts, remixes, acoustic performances and all other manner of scattered musical ephemera.

The metal community has been waiting for the sophomore album of Black Tide ever since their debut was released. Everyone who was anyone, no matter their opinion of the album, was witness to the nearly limitless potential that Black Tide was harboring. Merely teens at the time of their first release, the band was considered in need of just a little refinement; a few minor tweaks, and Black Tide would join their inspirations (Metallica, Trivium, et al,) in the upper echelons of heavy metal's notoriety.

In 2002, I saw Soulfy and In Flames open for Slayer. Of the two openers, In Flames impressed me more, coming equipped with style, youth and engulfing passion. I was certain that In Flames was destined to become part of the heavy metal landscape for years to come, as were most other attendees and metal people on the whole.

There’s something about German power metal that sets it wide apart from all other manifestations of heavy metal; it is even different than the power metal from other European nations. The strong identity of Germany’s entry into the genre seems to be brewed from a combination of that country’s robust tales of yore and musical idiom inexorably entwined with baroque and opera.