Site hosted by Build your free website today!



3-piece band from California, USA playing the good old portion of Glam/Sleaze Rock and Roll which made Hollywood once a city within a city for this kind of music. TATTOOED MILLIONAIRES go back even a little further as much of their 13 tracks counting CD sounds like T-REX and NEW YORK DOLLS in their early 70s days. The songs are short and although the sound is very independent like, this is one to check out if you’re into any of the mentioned bands. More info at: 

(Points: 7.4 out of 10)


Here we go again, another high quality female fronted rock and roll release from the USA. This time, it’s a band called BARLOW GIRL formed around 3 sisters in their 20s, who all look good, sing very well, play their instruments perfectly and write a bunch of catchy tunes, such as can be heard on their 2nd CD ‘Another journal entry’, which has just been re-released in an expanded version, just like what we have seen with the recent ALY AND AJ release. Musically making a mix of early 80s PAT BENATAR catchy poprock (“Grey”, “No one like you”), big 80s HEART/VIXEN/LAOS Power Metal ballads (“Take me away”, “Porcelain heart”, “I need you to love me”) and a whole lot of today’s female catchy melodic poprock a la KELLY CLARCKSON/ALY AND AJ (“Let go” and “5 minutes of fame”) mixed with just a little THE DONNAS, of course THE VERONICAS and even a slight dish of EVANESCENCE in the almost Gothic sounding ballad “Never alone”, of which even a video is included here. This release comes along with a large book that contains all the ins and outs of this 3-piece all female/all family rock and roll band, so there’s a lot to enjoy from this release. Anyone into female fronted rock and roll should check out this new BARLOW GIRL CD, which easily beats all KELLY CLARCKSON/HILARY DUFF/AVRIL LAVIGNE and whatever they are called. BARLOW GIRL hit the USA Billboard Charts big time and now it’s time for the rest of the world to hear some of the greatest female fronted rock and roll at the moment. More info at: 

(Points: 8.6 out of 10)


Singer/Songwriter ANNIE MINOGUE comes out of New York and has a band formed around her, calling it all together the ANNIE MINOGUE BAND. The CD they released is called ‘Tripping the velvet’, and despite the fact it is an independent CD, it sure feels and sounds like a major label release. The music of ANNIE MINOGUE is a good deal of strong mature melodic poprock in typical female fronted tradition, sometimes akin to a SASS JORDAN or a ALANNAH MYLES, but also approaching a 90s ROBIN BECK sound as well, so there’s definitely something of interest for the AOR/Melodic Rockfans here, because songs like “Down”, “Little bit of good” and “Love goes down” are very strong catchy tunes. Be sure to check out this awesome female rocker at: 

(Points: 8.2 out of 10)


For an independent CD this album from the New York based LOUDLIFE sounds very impressive. Especially female lead singer LORRAINE FERRO has got a fantastic voice, which sounds like she is like a very well-known singer, meaning that it sounds just amazing. In the USA she sang on National TV and Radio spots, but also sang with RITCHIE BLACKMORE of RAINBOW. Lorraine is one of those singers of whom we will be hearing A LOT MORE in the near future, because she easily beats with her voice any of the top 40 female singers. It’s like JANIS JOPLIN starts singing like JOAN JETT, so a really raw Rock voice is what to expect here instead of the childish singing of most female singers out there! Musically LOUDLIFE go in a sort of Classic Rock meets heavy Bluesrock meets Melodic Rock direction, sometimes reminding me of SASS JORDAN and ALANNAH MYLES, although comparisons to CINDERELLA and BADLANDS would be better. 10 songs are included on the band’s debut CD, which has it’s highlights in songs like “Tear in the curtain”, “Cradle to crypt” and “Icarus”. Although the first song is a very calm track, the rest rocks big time, very bluesy Classic Hardrock orientated, sort of a female version of FREE/BAD COMPANY/LED ZEPPELIN… Just listen to the groovy “May I print” and you would swear this is a cover of those bands! Check out this band asap at: 

(Points: 8.3 out of 10)


Here we have another high quality independent release. The band is called STAREWELL and they hail from Canada. They deliver a great deal of classic Hardrock with a slight modern touch. They remind me a lot of some of the other new acts from around the world (read: THE CASANOVAS, WOLFMOTHER, ROADSTAR…). This is how Rock is supposed to sound, although the band also adds some more melodic parts into their sound, but that ain’t a bad thing at all, as now songs like “Wrong way home”, “Blurrier” and “Take me away” are very catchy tunes as well, besides featuring a groovy classic hardrocksound. The guitarsound is by the way very impressive, with strong references to the 80s and 70s, with still an updated approach. This is one of those bands that should be taken out of their part of the world (in this case, Calgary in Canada) and unleashed to the whole world! Check out this STAREWELL asap at: 

(Points: 8.4 out of 10)


Here we go again! Italy, big sound, huge keys, flashy guitars, super melodic clean high pitched vocals and catchy hooks/choruses straight out of the big AOR book, well with this METATRONE from Sicily/Italy we can add another band to the list of KAMELOT, SONATA ARCTICA, SUPREME MAJESTY, WONDERLAND, LABYRINTH, VISION DIVINE, DERDIAN… It’s been done before a lot and although people will call this a very uninspired record, nobody can deny that this METATRONE sounds huge and their music sounds sometimes as good as the mentioned bands. The band has a fantastic lead singer (JO LOMBARDO) and their songs are super melodic big sounding, mixing the best of Classic Italo Power Metal with AOR melodies. It sounds HUGE, trust me, fans of mentioned bands will absolutely love this band. METATRONE was formed 8 years ago, with as most important member keyboardplayer DAVIDE BRUNO, who combines his love for music with the Catholic culture, so you can call this band the very first official Catholic Power Metalband! If you’re fed up with the endless superfast songs of DRAGONFORCE, try METATRONE, as they offer much more diversity in their songs. The CD contains faster uptempo KAMELOTish Melodic Power Metal (“Free and forever”, “The best way” and “Mirror city train”), SHYish AOR/Melodic Rock (“The prince” and “Not afraid”) and some midtempo tunes that combine the best of prog, power, classical music and aor (“The song begins” and “One in a million”). This CD sounds very impressive, maybe nothing new is brought here, but just like WONDERLAND, also this Italian band deliver an amazing masterpiece that should be in your collection if you’re a fan of legendary similar records, such as LABYRINTH ‘Return to heaven denied’, KAMELOT’s ‘Karma’, WONDERLAND’s ‘Follow me’, VISION DIVINE’s last 2 albums and SONATA ARCTICA’s debut. Go check out their site at: 

(Points: 8.8 out of 10)


HUGE in Japan, the brother of ULI JON ROTH (ex-SCORPIONS), guitarist (and multi-instrumentalist) ZENO ROTH is a mastermind and has released some sensational records throughout his career. It all started with the debut album back in 1986, which had to wait very long for a follow-up, but the 1990s were a good time for ZENO ROTH, with 2 succesfull albums released in Japan, all reflecting the man’s amazing talents on the guitar and the other instruments, but also the songs themselves as on vocals he was accompanied by some amazing singers, such as TOMMY HEART (of FAIR WARNING) and MICHAEL FLEXIG. Then it once again became quiet, although MTM MUSIC re-issued the ZENO debut CD as well as a CD with unreleased ZENO material titled ‘Zenology 2’ recently. Now in 2006 ZENO returns with new singer MICHAEL BORMANN, who himself is an excellent musician too (he plays all the instruments on his solo record for instance), but on this new ZENO record Michael only sings, but does an amazing job, as does ZENO himself with the instruments. The music is in the same vein as the previous ZENO records, so high quality top-notch catchy Melodic Hardrock, once again with some really sensational tracks, such as “Land of illusion”, “Shades of blue”, “Fanfares of love”, “Refugees (Longing for paradise)” and “I feel – I live”. This is how Melodic Hardrock is supposed to sound. Good to see ZENO back and with such a talented singer as MICHAEL BORMANN singing it is a pleasure to listen to the record without skipping…

(Points: 8.8 out of 10)


Releasing 3 records around the same time with the same singer is something you do not plan and most of the time it will be hard for each record to standout, but in the case of MICHAEL BORMANN, one of the best German singers of all times, it is a blessing to hear him on 3 records. In fact, after listening to all 3 you wish for more, believe me, as this guy has such a fantastic voice. Winning a contest more than 10 years when singing a BON JOVI tune, he has rapidly become one of the best singers in Europe, releasing amazing records with CHARADE, JADED HEART, JR BLACKMORE, THE SYGNET, RAIN and recently a new solo record as well as singing leads on the new ZENO. In the meantime, he also releases a new CD with the Swedish band RAIN. 11 songs are on this album, musically very 80s Arena Melodic Hardrock the US way a la BON JOVI, DANGER DANGER… Funny it all starts with 2 ok tracks that miss the strong choruses of Michael’s other bands/projects, but with the midtempo “Get over it”, the uptempo “Crazy” and the ballad “Die for you”, RAIN is right on track delivering high class catchy 80s Melodic Rock in the best JADED HEART/80s BON JOVI style. The CD continues with a nice selection of OK heavy rockers and good catchy melodic rockers, although I would have liked to see more uptempo rockers as most of the material is based on a midtempo backing sound or is semi-ballad orientated. Not as good as Michael’s new solo-CD, JADED HEART and the new ZENO, but still also this RAIN is a nice one to check out for fans of 80s melodic rock!

(Points: 8.2 out of 10)


It was announced as the final concert of TNT with longtime singer TONY HARNELL, so the crowd showed their enthousiasm that night in Madrid when TNT made their last appearance with their most well-known line-up. Replacement TONY MILLS of SHY surely is not a problem as the guy has an identical voice. Nevertheless, this DVD is a nice thread for the fans of the band as I am sure not everyone went to Madrid to check it out. The recording, sound and footage is all sounding and looking very well, maybe a bit too perfect here and there (studio technology these days… everything can be done), but anyway, this DVD is of course a must for the melodic rock and TNT fans out there. A bit on the short side, with only a few extras and the concert lasts about minutes, but at least it is a good thing to see a DVD TNT. Professionally done and sure a good move to record it in Spain as the people over there are much more alive during a concert, instead of the stubborn people from up North (yes, here in Holland it sometimes is depressing to see thousands of people doing nothing while watching a concert!). Anyway, not the best setlist of TNT, as I missed some of their songs, but still showing this band was and of course still is with new singer TONY MILLS a band you need to see live, too bad they perform very little outside of Norway, so one more reason to check out this DVD.

(Points: 8.2 out of 10)


How many more bands are out there with a CD that could have easily been in everyone’s room if released on a major label and promoted heavily enough on MTV? Well, RADIO RADIO is another band with a CD that fits the perfect rocksound of today, which is catchy, hooky, melodic, progrock breaks, 80s keys and a sound that sounds like the ideal combination of America’s Emo/Punkpop and Britain’s new Modern Rock, as if bands like KAISER CHIEFS and MY CHEMICAL ROMANCE are thrown together when going for a more straight-forward melodic rocksound of the 80s. Yes, Melodic Rock, but then modern sounding, while also adding a bit of the 80s THE ALARM, THE CURE, THE MISSION, SISTERS OF MERCY, etc. sound. It’s a mix of all kinds of rockstyles from that flashy 80s decade as it represents the best of the 80s and also today’s sound (which then again is as retro 80s since the 80s ended!), 2006 meets 1984 is my guess here! RADIO RADIO are from Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA by the way and with rockers like “The game”, “The tide” (strong 80s DURAN DURAN chorus), “Butterfly”, “Ruby reflection 395” and “Watch ‘em all come runnin” (I smell a HUGE 80s retro UKish New Wave Rock vibe here, kinda like SIMPLE MINDS, ULTRAVOX, BIG COUNTRY and very early U2), this band should be right up there with bands like ARCTIC MONKEYS, PANIC AT THE DISCO, THE KILLERS, THE KOOKS, KAISER CHIEFS… It’s not their first release, as their debut was indeed on a major label (UNIVERSAL), but sadly it didin’t gave them a big break. However, also on this new CD they sound like they are big rockstars, but I guess you’ll have to check that out for yourself at: 

(Points: 8.4 out of 10)


2nd CD of Australian band, which was actually recorded 4 years ago, but now released as a dual-disc, so a CD and DVD. Musically it is still the same of course, presenting a pure late 80s Bay Area Thrash Metal sound with sensational guitarwork, but songwise sounding the same from start to finish, which is heavy loud aggressive and faster than SLAYER ever was. Looking for melodies? Forget about this release! Looking for an even heavier SLAYER clone from Australia? Check out this CD asap at: 

(Points: 7.0 out of 10)


Hailing from Denmark, BARCODE deliver aggressive fast Hardcore, with happily still melodic choruses, although with gang-vocals, but a whole lot better than the Screamocore. This is Hardcore the way it should sound as in SUICIDAL TENDENCIES, BLACK FLAG style. Sounds good for what it is, but it really is something you only have to check out if you’re a fan of Hardcore, as it is just 30 minutes long with 13 very short fast songs over in a flash and all sounding the same for an outsider.

(Points: 7.2 out of 10)


Finnish act with instrumental sort of that typical Finnish melodic metalsound, but the vocal department is Black Metal screaming mixed with some Death Metal growls I am afraid. Only for fans of CHILDREN OF BODOM, as the use of keys is very prominent in the mix of this band, but be careful as they also add Industrial Metal influences a la NINE INCH NAILS here and there. Extreme Metal is what this is all about and therefore not interesting for the melodic fans among us…

(Points: -)


Apparantly you can organize chaos, according to the CD title of the live CD of WAYSTED. The legendary UK band around UFO bassist PETE WAY started up again somewhere in 2003 with a new CD release in 2005 and they even toured, of which this CD (produced by ROBIN GEORGE) is the living proof. Actually, it ain’t bad at all, it sounds pretty good, strong vocals, awesome guitarwork and a nice song selection, with a lot of surprised and very long improvisation, such as singing the first few words of the GOLDEN EARRING classic “Radar love” in the WAYSTED classic “Won’t get out alive”. Singer FIN from Scotland was the band’s original singer and 25 years later he still is, although he went away for a while. However, he sounds very good, like FRANKIE MILLER meets JIMMY BARNES, the Whiskey type of voice. Of course their classic “Heaven tonight” is not missed live, although I will never forget the version on which DANNY VAUGHN of TYKETTO sings. Anyway, it is a good sounding live CD of a band, which most of you probably forgot about for many years until a few years ago. Now they are back and are sounding very tight. Check it out if you’re a fan of classic Hardrock!

(Points: 8.1 out of 10)


The Finnish band SOULCAGE is not playing the typical Finnish Goth melodic rocksound so many other bands from there are playing. Instead SOULCAGE are choosing a Melodic Progressive Heavy Rock/Metal style which also has some additional variations in the vocal department (some screaming here and there), but mainly you can compare their sound to a PAGAN’S MIND, MIND’S EYE and VANDENPLAS, yet a little less sensational, but very melodic for sure. This is high quality music, which for sure will be loved big time by the fans of progressive metal. Maybe nothing new is brought here, but what we get to hear is quite impressive, although not in the first division of mentioned bands, but this band is definitely a promise for the future, especially since there are not many Finnish bands out there playing progmetal. Best song is definitely “Sum of choices”. More info at: 

(Points: 8.2 out of 10)


Progressive Metal from Florida/USA, only with some modern touches in the TOOL department, yet a bit more leaning towards our beloved melodic sound of bands like PAGAN’S MIND and MIND’S EYE. However, best description would be a mix between TOOL and EVERGREY, then we’re pretty close to this ONE. The band’s debut CD sounds very impressive and is as professional as most label releases, so no problem this is an independent CD, just listen to the strong opener “Control freak” and you will hear this is not just another band. Recommended to fans of MERCENARY as well. Combining big groovy metal riffs, complex prog metal breaks and melodic choruses with some modern elements is what this ONE is all about and therefore recommended to fans of mentioned bands. More info at: and listen to their songs at: 

(Points: 8.1 out of 10)


It’s hard to keep with every release on the major labels worldwide, but every now and then a few come through and they are sometimes pretty good. The band O.A.R. has already release a lot of albums, with this ‘Stories of a stranger’ being their latest release. Musically the band is playing your typical American laid-back singer/songwriter Midwestern rock that should be compared to acts like TOM PETTY, DAVE MATTHEWS BAND and also some VENICEish Westcoast can be traced in O.A.R.’s very radiofriendly pop/rock music which is quite melodic all the way through. The band scored a hit with their song “Love and memories”, a very strong rocker with catchy melodies. Although the band has a saxplayer in their line-up, you can barely hear him, although he also plays guitar, so O.A.R. is really a rockband, with just strong pop melodies and they truly sound like a traditional American Rockband, although here and there they go a bit more into a pop/reggae direction, but still keep it quite strong and interesting for the rockers. More info on them at: 

(Points: 8.2 out of 10)


Female singer/songwriter V.K. LYNNE comes out of North Hollywood/California and has released a strong typical female fronted rock CD the traditional American way of BONNIE RAITT, ALANNAH MYLES, SASS JORDAN, so a bit bluesy, groovy with soulful vocals. It also remind me a lot of the recently reviewed BONITA CD. 10 songs are included and the sound and especially vocals of V.K. LYNNE sound very impressive. This lady has got all it takes in becoming a star, as she also looks very nice, while musically she knows how to rock right. The songs “Her end of the phone” and “Become again” are the strongest tracks here, almost 80s DARBY MILLS/CHRISSY STEELE kinda rockers. The material is slightly less rocking at times, but any fan of female fronted pop/rock will like this for sure. Check it out for yourself at:  and 

(Points: 8.2 out of 10)


The German female fronted band DORRN returns with a new CD titled ‘Oversexed and underfucked’, which musically is filled with nice slightly modern sounding slow rock. Some strong melodies are here and there, although the sound is at times also quite heavy and modern. Do not expect any fun uptempo melodic rockers, but on the other hand if you want to hear groovy midtempo melodic heavy rock this might be something to check out. The vocals of the female singer are very strong and so are some of the 11 included tracks on the band’s latest CD. More info at:  and e-mail at: 

(Points: 7.8 out of 10)


Formed 20 years ago the UK Neo-Prog band GALAHAD rapidly became one of the genre’s icons, although somehow they were different and more experimental than acts like PALLAS, IQ, JADIS, PENDRAGON… GALAHAD was just like TWELFTH NIGHT experimenting a lot, with also some extraordinary vocals, so they were also one of the acts you either loved or hated. Now in 2006 a handful of die-hard fans are left and call themselves GALAHAD freaks. Although they are a nice progband, they are musically nowhere near acts like ARENA, PALLAS and IQ, whom present us very strong tracks. On the other hand, GALAHAD has a stage act that most other progacts do not own and maybe therefore they earn a lot of respect. Now there is a DVD available with a concert recorded in Poland as well as background footage and an additional 7 bonustracks taken from various sessions. All in all, a stunning 200 minutes counting DVD with also 80 minutes on the additional CD. Concert was performed in Katowice in the summer of 2006, just like most of the other DVDs on the METAL MIND label, in a rather Opera like beautiful setting. For the fans a must-have, but it ain’t exactly every progfan’s favorite act this GALAHAD as they are more experimental prog/new wave than our standard neo-progrock. Nevertheless this DVD is of course very nicely done and available through: 

(Points: 8.0 out of 10)


One of the best Neo-Prog bands from the past decade, although they were formed way back in 1978 and with this new DVD, PENDRAGON deliver another masterpiece. The DVD contains an amazing 240 minutes of footage, of which of course the main event is the concert the band gave in the beautiful Wyspianski Theatre in Katowice/Poland on the 22nd of May 2006. The performed concert of course was excellent and the professionally filmed recording on this DVD is rather superb. Concert itself is a collection of songs PENDRAGON recorded through the years, with as highlights the most well-known songs of the band, such as “As good as Gold”, “Paintbox” and “The black knight”. As extra there is some backstage footage and a lengthy documentary, basically a dream for every fan of the band, giving you a very pleasant long evening (4 hours!!!). One of the best DVD as of lately, really worth your money and way more interesting than the new studio-CD of PENDRAGON, which after a couple of spins still is quite disappointing, which I can’t say about this DVD, because that is really excellent. available through: 

(Points: 8.7 out of 10)


MAYAH is a new Norwegian band which is made up of members of SEA OF DREAMS and MILLENYA. The past musical experiences therefore go into both a Progrock and AOR direction, although the 2 songs on the band’s first recording are slightly more progressive metal with a very strong SAVATAGE meets CIRCLE 2 CIRCLE kinda style. Heavy progmetal with strong melodies and especially singer ROY EGELAND singing like ZAK STEVENS, but also more melodic arrangements such as the pompy/symphonic keyboardwork of OVE BJORN WILSON. All together these 2 songs show a very impressive band and I can easily predict a promising future for this MAYAH. Especially the 2nd track “She” is very interesting, starting as classic 70s Pomprock like STYX/URIAH HEEP with fantastic vocalwork, this song builds up to become an epic SAVATAGEish Progmetalpiece. MAYAH is the perfect mix between URIAH HEEP and SAVATAGE is my conclusion. Can’t wait for a full-length CD! In the meantime, check out their site for full downloads of these 2 songs at: 

(Points: 8.3 out of 10)


The German band MYRIS is working on their first full-length CD, but in the meantime here’s a review of their debut EP ‘Spinning around’. MYRIS is a female fronted band, which recently supported BON JOVI in Germany, so they are definitely a very serious band and this can also be heard on this 3-tracks counting EP CD. They play catchy melodic poprock not that far away bands like COASTLINE/NEXX actually, although not that good. However, the uptempo melodic rocker “Spinning around” is a real catchy tune that sticks in your head pretty quickly. A band to check out if you like fun 80s type of melodic rock. More info at:  and e-mail at:  or 

(Points: 8.1 out of 10)


The amount of female fronted bands these days is incredible and a lot of them go into the Goth Metalstyle. DELAIN is yet another band playing Gothic Metal and although their sound is close to that of NIGHTWISH, EPICA, WITHIN TEMPTATION, etc. the debut CD of this Dutch band is maybe the best female fronted album in ages. DELAIN deliver a MASTERPIECE here, which blows away any of the other female fronted Goth Metal releases from the past few years. It seems like The Netherlands is the most important country for this kind of music and I am quite sure this DELAIN will get a lot of attention from the rest of the world, because their first CD ‘Lucidity’ is a brilliant record, which sounds like the best moments of mentioned bands, with a prominent part for the superb vocals of lead singer CHARLOTTE WESSELS, who is as good as SHARON DEN ADEL (WITHIN TEMPTATION) and LIV KRISTINE (LEAVES EYES), whom both are also doing a duet with Charlotte. Other appearances on the CD include bassist/vocalist MARCO HIETALA of NIGHTWISH and guitarist AD SLUIJTER of EPICA, whom both appear on most of the songs, so they are truly a part of this project. DELAIN really is a project and not a band, but somehow it sounds better than EPICA, NIGHTWISH and WITHIN TEMPTATION, which of course shows these musicians and singers are very talented and able to do more sensational stuff. DELAIN was started by keyboardplayer MARTIJN WESTERHOLT, ex-WITHIN TEMPTATION, so we owe a big thank you to him for making this all possible, with the big bombastic sound he creates this CD gets a really sensational touch. 12 songs are included on the CD and nobody can ignore the amazing melodies of songs like “Frozen”, “Shattered”, “The gathering”, “Day for ghosts” and “Sleepwalkers dream”. Forgive me saying this as a Dutchman, but this DELAIN CD belongs to one of the best releases in the female fronted Melodic Goth (Power) Metal genre from the past few years! A true masterpiece that may be put next to AFTER FOREVER, EPICA, LEAVES EYES and NIGHTWISH without any doubts!

(Points: 9.1 out of 10)


Formed in 1992, the Swedish band CRYSTAL EYES became one of those Power Metal bands stuck in the underground. For 13 years their singer was founder/guitarist MIKAEL DAHL, but last year’s 4th CD ’Confessions of the maker’ saw the band introducing a lead singer, namely ex-LOST HORIZON singer DANIEL HEIMAN. 2006 brings more changes, but this time it comes along with a sensational new release of the band. First of all, new Dannish singer NICO ADAMSEN (STAR RATS) has a superb voice, the sound of the new CD is huge, thanks to the mixing of FREDRIK NORDSTROM (DREAM EVIL, HAMMERFALL) and more important, the songs are all high class Melodic Metal in the tradition of HAMMERFALL, DREAM EVIL, NOCTURNAL RITES, BLOODBOUND, MYSTIC PROPHECY… This is the kind of Metal we all love so much, with lyrics about battles, fights and dungeons, catchy hooks, melodic choruses to sing-a-long and the classic 80s guitar riffs. It’s a style the Swedish bands really like to play and this new CRYSTAL EYES CD is a must if you like the mentioned bands! Songs like “Battlefield”, “The quest remains”, “Dawn dancer” and “Roads of loneliness” are very impressive sensational Melodic Metal songs. By far, the best CRYSTAL EYES CD in their 14 years of activity. Maybe not original, but definitely very good and even better than the new HAMMERFALL!

(Points: 8.7 out of 10)


When you have JUDAS PRIEST guitarist KK DOWNING and YNGWIE MALMSTEEN playing solos on your first CD, you have definitely done something right. OK, VIOLENT STORM’s CD is not an original record, but who cares, because the classic 80s Melodic Metal a la FIFTH ANGEL, RACER X, LEATHERWOLF, etc. sounds very strong. Songs like “Fire in the unknown” (fast a la RIOT), “Deceiver” (midtempo a la FIFTH ANGEL), “Owing you” and “Empty hope” are showing this VIOLENT STORM is a band which combines huge Metal riffs with strong melodies out of the classic 80s book of DIO/RAINBOW/TWISTED SISTER. The band is made up of guitarist/bassist MICK CERVINO, lead vocalist MATT REARDON and drummer MIKE SORRENTINO (only on 3 songs unfortunately, the rest sounds like it has been done with a drum machine, which is a major pity!!!) and this is VIOLENT STORM’S official fist record, featuring 10 short songs, barely reaching 35 minutes of playing time. So, the vocals and songs are pretty good, but with a real drummer on all songs it would have sounded much stronger. MALMSTEEN/PRIEST fans will love the guitarsolos here and there for sure, while musically this is stuff for the DIO/FIFTH ANGEL/RACER X fans… Concluded, with longer playing time and real drums, this CD would have gotten a much higher rating than it gets now…

(Points: 7.9 out of 10)


This Italian guitarist can surely play the guitar very well, shredding all over the place on his solo-CD, sounding pretty good, but the song that makes the biggest impression of them all is the song “3000 Zombies”, one of the few songs with vocals on it, as this is mainly an instrumental journey. Anyway, this song contains almost every musicgenre from the past 100 years, mixing a Melodic Rock/AOR chorus with Death Metal growls, neo-classical shredding, house/techno beats, jazz and mood music, it’s like going crazy all the way! Guitarfreaks will like this a lot, but with a song like “3000 zombies”, this guy wants to do something out of the ordinary. Interested? Then go check out this release asap!

(Points: 7.5 out of 10)


Honestly I thought this REDEEM was the latest Finnish sensation playing Goth Melodic Rock/Metal a la HIM, ENTWINE, TO/DIE/FOR, but REDEEM are coming out of Switzerland. Not that it doesn’t affect the music, as it sounds exactly like HIM/ENTWINE… so nothing original here. However, the sound is huge and some of the songs are quite strong. Call REDEEM the Swiss version of HIM, they are not bad at all. If you’re looking for something original, you can forget about REDEEM, but if you like that typical Finnish dark melodic rock/metal sound you will instantly fall in love with REDEEM. Songs like “Two points of view”, “Alive” and “Behind the music” are very nice tunes that sound so much like our friends of HIM. If you’re a HIM fan, you’re a fool if you don’t get yourself a copy of this REDEEM asap!

(Points: 8.3 out of 10)


I was just thinking myself what would be the first 2007 release I am going to review. Well, the answer is the new CD of the Christian Singer/Songwriter JEREMY CAMP. In the USA he is very well-known, selling millions of records and sort of part of the next Christian Music Generation to follow-up the likes of MICHAEL W. SMITH, PETRA, STRYPER and the rest. Musically he sounds like a modern BRYAN ADAMS/RICHARD MARX, yet really modern American Rock with melodies straight out of the classic AOR book. The new CD of JEREMY CAMP will be released on a EMI distributed label and some big names from the American Rockscene are involved with the production and mixing. The CD was produced by AARON SPRINKLE (someone who is responsible for bringing back melodic rock choruses into today’s American Rock/Metal and Punkmusic, examples: KUTLESS, FALLING UP, ANBERLIN…) and the mixing was done by CHRIS and TOM LORD-ALGE (80s AOR producers, but also recently scoring huge with modern pop/rock acts). The sound is crystal clear, with some supertight melodies to be heard all throughout the CD. It all starts with the fantastic catchy AOR/Melodic Rocker “Tonight” that has 80s written all over. Next track “What it means” is midtempo modern poprock with AOR chorus, while “Beyond measure” is close in being an AOR ballad. These first couple of songs show that this new JEREMY CAMP is his strongest and most AOR based album. The melodies and choruses simply are a blessing to hear if you’re an AOR fan, with besides the first couple of songs as other highlights “No matter what” (very catchy uptempo melodic rocker), “I am nothing” and “Give you glory” (very catchy melodic rock chorus, even reminding me of SPIN GALLERY/SUNRISE AVENUE!). It is different than the 80s AOR sound, such as the fun keys are not there, but it is close to the singer/songwriter AOR like we heard in the past from RICHARD MARX, BRYAN ADAMS, MICHAEL MORALES, BRIAN SPENCE, STAN BUSH… If you’re a Christian you will love this album for sure, but also the regular AOR fan need to check out this release as it is filled with some beautiful melodic music that rocks from time to time. More info at: 

(Points: 8.4 out of 10)


Sometimes bands need to evolve, because in the beginning they sound very average. EDGUY is a very good example, because listening back to their early demos it was quite horrible and now their last 2 albums and all their live performances are filled with high energy Melodic Metal at it’s best. GUTTER SIRENS are another example. This is a Polish band, of whom in the past I heard and also reviewed 2 albums, which didn’t make a big impression. Now it’s 2006 and with beautiful artwork, the new CD of the band is making a spin in my laptop. It sounds huge and I do not know what has happened with this band the past 3 years, but they sound better than ever. The sound/production is very good, the melodies are strong, the band’s singer (bassist DOMAN) has got a great voice and songs like “Horror’s makers”, “The new horizon” (fantastic chorus!), “The power of inspiration”, “Lullaby” and “The enchanted place” are very strong Melodic (Power) Metal pieces. They even put a great semi melodic rockballad on the CD titled “Looking for the night”. There is a guest appearance of one of the best Swedish lead singers ever (GORAN EDMAN) and also a female singer called MARTA WOLTANSKA appears on several of the songs as backing singer. All together, this new GUTTER SIRENS CD surprised me with it’s strong Melodic Metal sound. Recommended if you like acts such as THUNDERSTONE, TWILIGHT GUARDIANS, TWILIGHTNING, SAIDIAN, EVERGRACE, EDGUY… More info at: 

(Points: 8.7 out of 10)


THE BEATLES have been covered many times, also many tributes have been delivered, but this is one of the first real all-star Metal tributes to the band which changed the musicscene 40 years ago. Involved singers and musicians are top-class, because none-other than BRUCE KULICK, LEMMY, ERIC SINGER, ALICE COOPER, GEOFF TATE, BILLY IDOL, JEFF SCOTT SOTO, YNGWIE MALMSTEEN, TOMMY SHAW, GEORGE LYNCH, TONY FRANKLIN and many others make their appearance here. They do an excellent BEATLES tribute here, with their versions of classics like “Back in the USSR”, “Lucy in the sky”, “magical mystery tour” and “I saw her standing there”. 12 songs in total, so check it out asap to hear a Metal version of THE BEATLES!

(Points: 8.1 out of 10)


The latest US band with a CD that could have easily been a major label release charting high in the Billboard Charts, but VIEW FROM EVEREST is an independent band with a local following. They have released a very good CD, which sounds typical American, combining modern rock with catchy melodic choruses, although I have to say there are a bit too much ballads on the album, but on the other hand they do sound pretty good. Without a doubt, lead singer CHAD ARMSTRONG gives this band the own identity, as he sounds very good, a real soulful kinda vibe can be heard, also partly due to the fact he listened in his youth to the singers of FOREIGNER/DOOBIE BROTHERS, so what you get is a clean melodic voice with a modern rocksound backing it up. THE TORIES, THE REMBRANDTS and even NELSON come to mind here and there, especially on the impressive first couple of songs (“Slowdance” and “Standing”). Definitely a band with a bright future, check them out at:  and e-mail them at: 

(Points: 8.2 out of 10)


Here we go again! Swedish Melodic Metal at it’s best! The band is called DAWN OF SILENCE and they have recorded a bunch of demos before they released this full-length CD. I even recall reviewing one of them, but this CD really blows me away. If you enjoyed the likes of BLOODBOUND, DESTYNATION, DIONYSUS, EDGUY, DREAM EVIL, NOSTRADAMEUS, NOCTURNAL RITES, MYSTIC PROPHECY, then here’s one more to add your wantslist, because this is Metal with superb melodic hooks, catchy choruses and twin-guitars in classic MAIDEN style. OK, not original, but definitely a band worth checking out. The sound/production of their first CD is huge, thanks to JONAS KJELLGREN (SCAR SYMMETRY) and with songs like “Out of time”, “Point of no return”, “Long time dead” and “Misguided life” DAWN OF SILENCE belong to the latest sensation in the Melodic Metalscene. Check it out asap if mentioned bands are your fave acts! More info at: 

(Points: 8.8 out of 10)


Released 10 years ago and a huge hit among the Christian community, the first CD of DC TALK. Back in 1996 it did very well in the USA, with a number 16 spot on the US Billboard Charts, several hitsingles, a Dove Award for the song “Jesus freak” and till this day it remains to be one of the most succesfull Christian Rock projects of all times. Now a decade later the CD is being remastered and will be re-released as a 2-CD set, with an additional disc that contains mixes, live-cuts and other unreleased material. Musically DC TALK was very 90s, sort of Alternative Pop/Rock with still decent melodies, but in the end sounding like a mix between KING’S X, WHITE HEART and RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS, with some Pop/R&B elements added. Quite extraordinary and therefore a big hit. It changed the Christian music climate as well, not as dark as it did with the Rockscene in the mid 90s, but it influenced rockartists/bands so much they also went for such a modern poppy sound (read: WHITECROSS/PETRA). Anyway, now it celebrates it’s 10th year anniversary with this new release, so if you liked the record this sure will please you a lot.

(Points: 7.7 out of 10)


The German band MONGREL deliver 15 catchy Melodic Punkrocksongs on their latest CD. The band may easily be called the German version of US acts like NOFX, PENNYWISE… This is the kind of fun poppy punkrock which shows how it really needs to sound instead of the poppy US GREENDAY Punkpop. MONGREL take no breath and from start to finish this is catchy pure Punkrock, with singable choruses and a straight-ahead sound to instantly love if you’re a fan of classic Punkrock. Songs like “Chosen ones”, “Scarred of what I see” and “Someone’s got to pay” are a must-hear for fans of IGNITE, NOFX, PENNYWISE… Check out this CD asap!

(Points: 8.2 out of 10)


Finnish band ALLIANCE is back with a strong new mini-CD titled ‘Winds of fire’, which contains a good deal of classic 80s inspired Melodic Rock. 4 songs are included and without a doubt, this ALLIANCE shows they can pull off some great Melodic Rock in a SHY/TNT style. With songs like “Winds of fire”, “Traces in the sand” and “The 800th lifetime” they show to be ready for a full-length CD release, which hopefully happens someday soon. In the meantime, check out their site at: 

(Points: 8.2 out of 10)


German band playing classic Melodic Punkrock in the style of THE DONNAS, THE RUNAWAYS… The songs are poppy, catchy and radio-ready, with the melodic vocalwork of singer GALACTICA. The band is drawn in cartoonstyle in their CD booklet, but the music is not like the catchy cheesiness of THE BRATZ. In fact, this is really classic Punkrock the female way, with songs that could have been on a classic THE RUNAWAYS record, just listen to the impressive “Aim and shoot”. Fans of THE DONNAS and THE RUNAWAYS should check out THE HEROINES at: 

(Points: 8.2 out of 10)


Already the 4th CD of the band BISS, which is formed around lead singer MARC STORACE (of KROKUS) and guitarist RALF HEYNE. Together they once again come up with a very strong classic Hardrock sounding album that sounds even better than the last KROKUS release. Especially songs like “Born to ride”, “Blood on sand” and “Train of thoughts” are very strong Hardrocksongs with memorable melodies. All sounds great on this new BISS album, very powerful and melodic, just the way we want MARC STORACE wanna hear sing. Only the HEART cover “Barracuda” is a bit useless as you can’t top the original version of this classic. Nevertheless, a very strong BISS album and highly recommended to anyone into classic 80s Hardrock!

(Points: 8.4 out of 10)


Multi-instrumentalist FRANK TIENEMANN basically did everything on his own on the first CD of his project/band CROW 7. With a little help from the musicians of the band SEVEN SEALS, this German musician sang, wrote, produced and played almost everything himself. Musically CROW 7 is your typical German Melodic Hardrock with neo-classical influences, very much like ZENO/FAIR WARNING… Only vocally Frank does not sound as strong as for example MICHAEL BORMANN or TOMMY HEART, but some of the 13 included songs are definitely very interesting to hear if you’re a fan of this bombastic sounding Melodic Hardrockstyle that ZENO, FAIR WARNING, CRAAFT, ROKO also did (or are still doing). Songs like “Fallen angel”, “Somewhere in heaven”, “Son of a hero” and the titletrack are very strong Melodic Hardrocksongs. Highly recommended to fans of mentioned bands! The CD is available through:  and more info at: 

(Points: 8.2 out of 10)


High quality complex Progressive Metal is what to expect on the debut CD of the Norwegian band TWISTED INTO FORM, a band formed by a couple SPIRAL ARCHITECT members. Singer LEIF J. KNASHAUG is a fantastic gifted singer, who shines on the music of TWISTED INTO FORM, which is very progressive at times. It all starts pretty melodic actually with a sort of KANSAS type of style, but throughout the CD it becomes more and more complex, heavier and goes more into a NEVERMORE style, without losing the melodies of course. The CD was produced by our dear friend NEIL KERNON (SPYS, AUTOGRAPH, MICHAEL BOLTON, QUEENSRYCHE, AVIATOR, NEVERMORE…), who did a great job. This is one of those growers, as you have to listen a couple times to discover some very unusual twists that sound just right for this kind of Metal. This is not melodic progressive metal! This is PROGRESSIVE METAL as progressive as you can get, so with tempo changes all the time, but do not fear, there are still strong melodies to be found. It’s just that this is one of those releases which is more recommended to the open-minded progmetalfan! Without a doubt, this could well become a masterpiece in the coming years, as it is quite different than the typical progmetal release out there!

(Points: 8.4 out of 10)


Anyone wishing for a real good new QUEENSRYCHE album should not wait any longer, because the answer is ZERO HOUR. This band was formed in 1993 and they already released 4 CDs since that time. Now they are releasing a new CD, which might well be their finest release, a real epic prog metal masterpiece in classic QUEENSRYCHE/FATES WARNING style. The change of lead singer did only make them stronger than ever. New singer CHRIS SALINAS, formerly of POWER OF OMENS, is definitely one of the best singers out there for this kind of music. He sounds like GEOFF TATE sounded in his best days (read: 15-20 years ago!). The music is your typical epic Progressive Metal. This is exactly the album the QUEENSRYCHE fans have been waiting for. Maybe the onbly complaint might be there are only 5 real songs on the CD, as the other 2 are short instrumentals, so with a playing time of a little under 40 minutes a bit short, but who cares if it is high quality Prog Metal from start to finish. PYRAMAZE released an amazing album with LANCE KING earlier this year and this new ZERO HOUR should be put right next to it, both easily beating that dreadful new QUEENSRYCHE album!

(Points: 8.7 out of 10)


ROCKET SCIENTISTS return with a new CD, their 4th so far, but it took them 8 years to complete the new album ‘Revolution road’, as the previous record ‘Oblivion days’ was released back in 1999. Actually the members of ROCKET SCIENTISTS are constantly busy with other bands/projects, so therefore the time to continu the ROCKET SCIENTISTS project is very limited. However, founders ERIK NORLANDER (keys) and MARC MCCRITE (guitar, vocals) just finished a new CD of ROCKET SCIENTISTS, along with a bunch of other musicians, of which most are known of the solo projects of ERIK NORLANDER. Musically this new 2-CD (!) set is filled with high quality music that takes a lot of 70s influences, but is actually a mix of progressive rock, melodic hardrock, classic rock and even AOR. Not that far away from ERIK NORLANDER’s ‘Music machine’ CD, this is a superb new record of ROCKET SCIENTISTS, with many highlights. It’s very lengthy, but in this case that is not a problem, because from start to finish it is a pleasure to listen to such beautiful music that is quite diverse and will attracts fans of AOR, Hardrock and Progressive Rock all together. Be sure to check this release out. More info at:  and 

(Points: 8.7 out of 10)


ME FIRST AND THE GIMME GIMMES is a sort of Gimmick fun Punkband formed around members of NOFX, LAGWAGON and THE FOO FIGHTERS. They have already released a bunch of albums, mostly covering famous poptunes in a punk version and also this time that is the case. Covered are 12 songs that are known for being America’s most famous Country tunes (GARTH BROOKS, DOLLY PARTON, DIXIE CHICKS, KENNY ROGERS…), all done in a fast Poppunkstyle, easy to sing-a-long and perfectly done. Always nice to play while having a party…

(Points: 8.0 out of 10)


All-girl band made up of members of bands like HELLE’S BELLS, THE RAZORBABES, NEW FANGS, THE FLYING DUTCHMEN, THE PIN-UPS, RAGAZZA and THE APOCOLIPSTICKS. They were formed in the late 90s by members of these groups and they have been since then making music and also touring a lot as the latest all-female punkrock sensation. Although they hail from Seattle, they play classic late 70s New York Punky Rock and Roll like early BLONDIE (even a cover “Picture this” is included) and also THE RUNAWAYS and THE DONNAS come to mind. ‘Snap out of it’ is a 45” single they released on TRASH 2001 RECORDS. It contains 3 catchy uptempo punkpoprockers in the late 70s/early 80s style, even reminding one of early PAT BENATAR and SUE SAAD. Be sure to check out this band if you’re a fan of female fronted punk/rock. More info at: 

(Points: 8.1 out of 10)


Another female fronted act. This US act is mixing 60s poppy melodies of the Motown sound with catchy 70s New York Poppunk, ending up sounding like a mix between THE DONNAS, THE SUPREMES and THE PIPETTES. The 13 songs are all very catchy fun uptempo punky poprockers, with as highlight the early 80s typed “Thinkin’ bout you”. Must-have for fans of female fronted poprock! Recommended to fans of early PAT BENATAR and early BLONDIE! More info at: 

(Points: 8.1 out of 10)


Yet another female fronted band. THE SPOOKSHOW come out of Sweden and play catchy Melodic Punkrock’n’Roll. 14 very short songs are included, most of them fast punky sing-a-long tunes, with sometimes a sidestep, such as the slower and longest track of the album “Tonight is the night”, which sounds a lot like JOAN JETT. However, most of the time this band is all about catchy fun uptempo Melodic Punkrock and they do that very well, especially on the songs “With my own hands” (very catchy), “Send me an angel” and “I sold your soul to the devil”. The band is planning 3 episodes of their Psychosexual story, with this being Chapter 1. The other 2 parts will be released later this year and next year. More info at: 

(Points: 8.1 out of 10)

(All reviews by Gabor Kleinbloesem)