Volbeat goes Wild West metal on new disc


No idea how Michael Poulsen reaches the depths of his throaty vocals, but trying to find out is well worth the $11.99 you’ll pay at Best Buy for Volbeat’s new 14-song disc, “Outlaw Gentlemen and Shady Ladies.”

You’ve heard “Dead But Rising” and “The Hangman’s Body Count” and the rest are just as energetic, loud and fun.

From the harmonic intro through the groovy “Pearl Hart,” into rock n roll drive tunes “Dead But Rising” and “Hangman’s,” it’s nonstop goodness.

Not one song can’t be a single, including songful “”Cape Of Our Hero” and heavy “Room 24,” featuring King Diamond.

“Lola Montez” is a near punk love anthem, before “Black Bart” is right back on the Volbeat style train.

If Western went metal, this is it, with “Lola Montez,” “Black Bart” and “Lonesome Rider,” featuring the beautiful vocals of Sarah Blackwood.

The Danish band’s Elvis influences shine on “Lonesome Rider” and the guitar riffs on “The Sinner is You” are flawless, as are Poulsen’s vocals.

There are breaks from the metal, like on “The Sinner is You” but this is a great metal band that Copenhangen should proudly tout as its own.

“Doc Holliday” and “Our Loved Ones” close what some would call the psychobilly section of the record. I call it Wild West Metal.

Catch VB in the East, Louisville, Ky. on a loaded Louder Than Life two-day fest on Oct. 3-4.

Avatar takes you on a sadistic circus

Hail one sadistic circus.

Swedish metal band Avatar will take you on a rock ride – that whether you love or hate – you won’t forget after one listen to Hail The Apocalypse. 

Avatar wastes no time slinging the metal around with the title track and single that is putting the outfit on American air. Flesh-eating riffs open for the first taste of lead singer Johannes Eckerstrom’s gutteral screams – screams you absolutely clamor for more for, even after several consecutive listens. When he belts, “Throw the spear,” better have the cruise set if driving.

Religious themes pop their heads here. “All flesh is equal when burnt/We are forgiven/forgive as we never shall learn”

At the 3:09 mark, the band generously gives you 35 or so more seconds of the opening glory.

No time lapse as “I Don’t Know” kicks in to a trippy circus-themed backdrop. “Death of Sound” breaks up edgy riffs and chops with a songful chorus.

“Vultures Fly” had to grow on me, but when it did, it grew quickly. A Rob Zombie-ish intro is followed by the now-typical melody, but also with Eckerstrom’s varying vocals and pushy gritty calls.

“Bloody Angel,” another released American single is a beautiful mix of metal, melodic vocals, sweet arrangements and paralyzing lyrics: “Come bloody angel/Break off your chains and look what I found in the dirt/Pale battered body/It seems she was struggling/Something is wrong with this world.”

More religious theme it seems.

Hopefully, “Murderer” never gets overlooked on this masterpiece. From the bass to the chorus screams of “Murderer,” it’s a metal thing of beauty.

Religious theme continues with: “Shame on you who dared survive/You shall pay/The dead will rise” and “Will the torturer save your soul/Will this path take you down below”

“Tsar Bomba” comes right at you in anti-English venom (More on the meaning of Tsar Bomba)

“Puppet Show” is the favorite track of both my 6-year-old and my 3-year-old. Back to the twisted circus beat behind Eckerstrom, it’s the deepest growl of his made-for-horror-movie pipes. And is that a trombone?

“Get in Line” is heavy, heavy and a perfect way to lead into a cover of Nirvana’s “Something in the Way.”

“Tower” closes the disc with an unexpected and delightful melodic twist as Eckerstrom sings down the 11th and final track.


It’s like a metal show with classical instruments, like a rodeo with poodles, like a metal show with all the bells and whistles. Get it, before the rest of America beats you to it.

TFK opens PledgeMusic campaign for new disc


Modern rock favorite THOUSAND FOOT KRUTCH announces its first new studio album in over two years, OXYGEN:INHALE, which is set to release independently worldwide Aug. 26 on TFK Music and with marketing, sales and distribution through Fuel Music. With the album being produced now by TFK frontman Trevor McNevan and longtime collaborator Aaron Sprinkle (One Republic, Anberlin, Pedro the Lion, The Almost), TFK is once again engaging the “TFK Army,” fans of the band that they prefer to call their “friends and family,” for a goal-driven PledgeMusic campaign.


Sparking the second-biggest campaign ever for Kickstarter at the time for its 2012 independently released, SiriusXM Satellite Radio Octane-nominated “Epic Album of the Year” and Billboard No. 1 selling Hard Rock album, The End Is Where We Begin, TFK’s ethos is to always include its fans in the equation.  For the release of OXYGEN:INHALE, the band is asking its fans to help them through PledgeMusic to take its radio, retail, tour, video and media promotions for the album to the next level internationally.  The PledgeMusic campaign will also be a place for fans to pre-order the album and receive exclusives from the band that are not available anywhere else, including audio and video downloads, special incentives for all PledgeMusic backers after reaching target levels, and much more.  Pledges for support are now being accepted at http://www.pledgemusic.com/projects/tfk.


Asking for only one dollar to fully support the PledgeMusic campaign, TFK received the first dollar from hardDrive’s Lou Brutus and Roxy Myzal during an interview while at the recent Rock on the Range festival in Columbus, OH. 


“Why one dollar? Because we are going to do this anyway…for you guys,” says McNevan to the band’s fans.  “The difference is that we need your help to take the marketing and promotion to a whole new level.  We believe we have our best record brewing from the studio and we need your help to get it out there.


“Oxygen is our lifeline,” continues McNevan, reflecting on the impetus behind the new record.  “It’s what keeps us alive and breathing. Most of us spend our entire lives taking half breaths when we were created to take full breaths. To live life to its fullest, to treat every day like it might be our last, and treat other people the same way.  We can’t see it, but we need it.  It exists. It fuels everything we are.”


With upcoming featured performances and headlining positions on the summer festival circuit, the Ontario, Canada-bred TFK has been a continuously escalating highlight reel since their formation in 1997.  Receiving over 2,000, 5-star average customer reviews on iTunes® alone for The End Is Where We Begin, the album went on to become the band’s biggest ever selling mainstream album and spark four Active Rock radio hits (“Let The Sparks Fly,” “War of Change,” “Light Up The Sky,” “Courtesy Call”), as well as two No. 1’s at Christian radio (“War of Change,” “Light Up The Sky”).  With best-selling albums, additional Active Rock radio hits “Fire It Up,” “Move” and “Phenomenon,” plus a slew of soundtrack slots, the group has literally infiltrated every facet of pop culture.  They continue to receive ongoing ESPN appearances, as well as various NASCAR, MLB, NHL, WWE, NCAA and NFL airings (including the 2010 Super Bowl), along with the “GI Joe” movie trailer, WGN-TV’s “Smallville” and EA Sports’ NHL 2010 and 2013 video games.


All the latest tour dates and additional band information can be found at www.thousandfootkrutch.com, http://twitter.com/officialtfk and www.facebook.com/thousandfootkrutch, where the band has over 995,000 fans.