Reviews – Album/Gig 2016

Xerosun – This Dark Rage EP.

One that never got published in the end, but through it should be out there somewhere, one my favourite Irish bands over the last few years, well worth checking out, Technical, Aggressive, and a little on the progressive side.


Black Aces – Shot In The Dark                       for Midlands Rocks

Aussie Rockers are ready to party, music might not sound hugely original, but there is something interesting and a little unusual about the vocals and delivery.


KHOMPA – The Shape Of Drums To Come                  for Midlands Rocks

Really interesting and different sounding work from a drummer, standard drum kit, 4 triggers, and hard work. Be prepared for something different and outside most people’s boxes.


Maverick – Big Red                  for

The excellent new album from Maverick, out now on Metalapolis Records, worth more than just checking out.


Suicide By Tigers – Suicide By Tigers       for Midlands Rocks

Excellent new Swedish Rock Band with an old school vibe.


Bloodstock 2016 – including my contributions  for Overdrive

Here are the links to each days summary from this years Bloodstock Festival on Overdrive.

Thurs 11th

Fri 12th

Sat 13th

Sun 14th


Christopher Shayne – Turning Stones       for Midlands Rocks

A really excellent album for fans of Country/Rock/Americana and just plain old good music, these guys are going somewhere.


Blue Öyster Cult – Academy, Dublin – 28-07-2016          for Overdrive

An at times truly sublime performance from a band that are true legends of Rock.


Ramblin’ Man Fair – Day 1 – 23-07-2016                      for Overdrive

Just an awesome day of a wide variety of music, impossible to be great music, great people and beautiful weather.


Blood Red Throne – Union Of Flesh And Machine            for Midlands Rocks

Crushing new album from Blood Red Throne, Norwegian Death Metal of a very high standard.


Fates Warning – Theories Of Flight                   for Midlands Rocks

Stunning album from an unbelievably talented band, they just continue to make wonderful music and Theories Of Flights is a beautifully made album.

Hugely honoured that Fates Warning added the review to their Website and that Ray really liked it too.


Theories Divide – Outcast                            for Overdrive

An absolute pleasure to work on a really quality Irish Metal release, this is a cracking album, if you like your Extreme Metal with some melody, crunchy and crisp riffs, get your lugs wrapped around this, cracking album.


Luna Rise – Dark Days And Bright Nights            for Midlands Rocks

Austrian Melodic Rockers Luna Rise, provide a very different sounding album, mixing melancholy, melodic and some pop overtones, take a listen and try something new.


Elm Street – Knock Em’ Out …With A Metal Fist                     for Midlands Rocks

Aussie Metalers Elm Street back with a really powerful hook to the guts, moving forward and smashing it.


Whitechapel – Mark Of The Blade             for Midlands Rocks

Very interesting new album from a band that are pushing their own boundaries and continuing to evolve as they develop, continuing to enjoy their work and growth.


DARE – Sacred Ground           for

A very welcome return from the British AOR stalwarts with a really good album and one of the best ballads these ears have heard in a hell of a long time.


Illdisposed – Grey Sky Over Black Town            for Midlands Rocks

Danish Death Metal legends Illdisposed continue to break necks and destroy ear drums.


Nervosa – Agony           for Midlands Rocks

An excellent slice of Blackend Thrash Metal from one of Brazil’s premier Metal Bands, the three ladies shred like crazy on this new album, it’s killer stuff \m/ \m/


Massive – Destination Somewhere           for Overdrive

More good time Rock ‘N’ Roll from Oz, these Melbourne guys really know how to kick it. Fun and sounding excellent, don’t miss out on these guys if they are near you later in the year on their return trip to Europe.


Death Angel – The Evil Divide       for Midlands Rocks

Already one of my favourite albums of 2016, absolutely cracking stuff from a band that has continued to create meaningful and powerful music. This is for me their strongest release since the 90’s, bravo, terrific album all around, don’t miss out on this one.


Harbinger – Paroxysm              for Midlands Rocks

First EP release for London Technical Death Metal band Harbinger, and it’s a damn fine effort to introduce themselves to the World.


Daxx And Roxanne – 4×4               for Overdrive

Sleazy Swiss Rockers show a lot of potential on this four track EP, certainly will be keeping an eye on them for a follow up album release, they definitely know how to Rock.


Iodine Sky – Tides               for

Manchester four piece alternative rock band Iodine Sky are definitely trying to make some waves with their debut album Tides, some excellent tracks on this one.


Flotsam And Jetsam – Flotsam And Jetsam      for Midlands Rocks

Thirty years on from the release of Doomsday For The Deceiver this band are still creating and releasing really excellent Thrash Metal albums. This self titled 12th studio release is a monster – go check it out and go see them live in the UK & Ireland in October.


Destruction – Under Attack               for Midlands Rocks

Teutonic Thrash royalty, Destruction have rarely strayed from the mission to obliterate your ears, the new album Under Attack is still really powerful, cutting riffs and in your face, and on the whole certainly one of the best releases since the reunion with Schmier around the turn of the century.


Devildriver – Trust No One     for Midlands Rocks

Beast of an album just released from another Calafornian band, Devildriver, great that is still a Hardcore element in the vocals, these guys are still improving, and always great live.


Deftones – Gore       for Overdrive

The latest release from the Californian Alt Rock powerhouse. Have always thought they this was a band that required a bit of work to get into, but that should never be a problem, if anything it should be a plus, once you do get into an album like this it’s a joy.


Rob Zombie – The Electric Warlock Acid Witch Satanic Orgy Celebration Dispenser  for  Overdrive

The new album from Rob Zombie may not contain a huge amount of secrets in it’s style, but it’s been really well put together and is Zombie all over, if you like Gore splattered schlock rock this really is where it’s at.


POEM – Skein Syndrome  for MidlandsRocks

Now that things are moving along quite nicely here’s another of my reviews gracing the pages of Midlands Rocks. Greek Progressive metallers POEM release their second album on a very non-expectant public. Great music and concept.


Dust Bowl Jokies – Dust Bowl Jokies    for  MidlandsRocks

Swedish sleaze rock with a massive touch of class, Dust Bowl Jokies have released an album that should be taken very seriously, great mix of styles and deliveries and songs that you want to come back to.


Amon Amarth – Jomsviking for MidlandsRocks

My take on the new Amon Amarth album, the Swedish Melodic Death Metal legends have made the bold step this time around of taking on a Concept album, and for me it works. Will we ever get to see the full thing in a live environment – it would be a night to remember.


Moonspell/SoulLine – Button Factory, Dublin – 29-03-2016 for

What a thrill it was to have a second band make their debut performance on a Dublin stage and again Overdrive where there to cover the occasion, thoroughly enjoyed Moonspell’s set, another cracking band.


Amorphis/Textures/POEM – Button Factory – 20-03-2016 – for

The amazing Amorphis visited Dublin recently for a show in the Button Factory, in fact it was their first ever Irish show and Overdrive where there to cover the event.