A new Puscifer album is always a big deal so we decided to chat to Carina Round about the band’s brand new album – Existential Reckoning which is out now.
A new Puscifer album is always a big deal so we decided to chat to Carina Round about the band’s brand new album – Existential Reckoning which is out now.
It was early in the year 2000 when the buzz started to go around the music scene about this brand new band called Linkin Park. People were starting to talk about this band out of California, people knew there was something great coming but couldn’t quite put their finger on what it was. I remember a friend seeing them at a show and then when trying to describe them to me said “they are kinda nu-metal but are kinda not… nobody has ever had this sound before.”
In September that year the world got its first dose of Linkin Park with their first single “One Step Closer” and by the time their debut album Hybrid Theory dropped in late October the band were already a mainstream success. Heavy music was once again being played on commercial radio and television… yes the album was a game changer.
It is hard to imagine that twenty years later the album is now one of the highest selling albums in music history and that the driving force behind the band Chester Bennington is no longer with us. In a way that makes the celebration of the album even more important – especially considering the band have just put together four brilliant special editions of the album that launched them in the first place
“There is so much stuff on this thing,” says Mike Shinoda desperately trying to pull up a list of what rarities are to be found on the 20th Anniversary Hybrid Theory release. “I actually forget what is on there…. there is just so much stuff,” he continues still laughing loudly.
“The process itself took about a year,” he says when he has finally find the list he is looking for. “A lot of it had actually been collected by friends of the band and some relatives. Lots of stuff came from parents and even from people that worked at the label, some even from management. It was a big team effort and we brought it all together with an art director that we have been working with since Hybrid Theory. We even did the front cover of Hybrid Theory with Frank. It was a huge team effort.”
One of the things that the band has always embraced is the fact that their music was globally loved, even in continents like Asia where heavy music has at times struggled to become mainstream. That is well reflected in the release of these special edition albums as the band found material from all over the world. “We also felt that we could be a local band to everywhere,” says Linkin Park guitarist Brad Delson. “I think partially that happened because we are such a diverse group. We engaged so deeply so often even when we were just starting out. Even with Hybrid Theory we toured the world multiple times and we were going to parts of Asia that many of us had never been to before and we were hearing the songs being sung back to us so loudly.”
“Sometimes that was even happening in countries where English was not the primary language,” continues Delson. “I think that because there was an emotion in the words that is relatable to the world over, but particularly in Asia we have felt like we are a local band. We have felt that right across Asia.”
Nodding along Joe Hahn says he agrees with Delson on why Linkin Park connected with so many people but he also believes that the bond was caused from something even deeper. “I think it came from the connection and collaboration between Chester and Mike,” he says thoughtfully. “There was just something in the melodies that was a natural dynamic that they were able to play with. It did feel challenging at times to have two front-men but I think at the same time that was something that made us really unique.”
“But also when they were writing the music they would often touch on very personal instances but coming from two perspectives,” he says continuing. “They really had to find somewhere to meet and that place where they found the common ground did translate into something very universal and an universal emotion. They really struck a chord that was super personal and super relatable. At times it was really hard to makes things work but I think when it did it came across as something really magical on our records.”
The Hybrid Theory Special Edition albums are out now through Warner Bros. Records.
Artist: Marilyn Manson
Album: We Are Chaos
Date Of Release: 12th September 2020
Label: Loma Vista Recordings
1. Red Black And Blue
2. We Are Chaos
3. Don’t Chase The Dead
4. Paint You With My Love
5. Half-Way One Step Forward
6. Infinite Darkness
8. Keep My Head Together
9. Solve Coagula
10. Broken Needle
I still remember the first time I ever heard Marilyn Manson. While at High School a friend slipped me a mixed tape that contained a couple of Manson’s tracks. One was “Irresponsible Hate Anthem” and suddenly I had discovered another artist that seemed to be turning my diary entries into music.
Of course like all Manson fans I weathered the storm of the whole ‘he’s not really heavy… you shouldn’t be listening to him’ crap and to this day I still believe that Holy Wood (In The Shadow Of The Valley Of Death) is one of the greatest alternative albums ever made and I even have a soft spot for his more commercial The Golden Age of Grotesque.
Now comes Manson’s new album We Are Chaos and yes it seems even twenty-five years down the track Manson is still an artist that knows how to capture the mood of the world in an album. This isn’t just an album to listen to in 2020 this is the freakin’ soundtrack of 2020.
The album overcomes a fairly strange pre-amble (it is Manson so what do you expect) to fall straight into “Red Black And Blue” which captures the traditional Manson sound so well. From there Manson goes into “We Are Chaos” – a track that captures the mood and emotions of 2020 in a way that no other track has. He repeats that formula with “Broken Needle” which also serves to be the perfect closer for a deeply emotional and moody album.
As an album We Are Chaos makes a lot of twists and turns. “Don’t Chase The Dead” is pure old school Manson while “Perfume” is a creative despite its catchiness. “Keep My Head Together” captures more of an alternative rock vibe while the thought provoking “Infinite Darkness” has you seriously thinking about the line ‘you are dead longer than you are alive.’
There are some truly amazing tracks on the album as well though. “Paint You With My Love” sees Manson push his vocal boundaries and reach some amazing new heights and the beautiful instrumental sounds on “Half-Way One Step Forward” conjure up sounds normally only heard on folk metal albums. Then there is “Solve Coagula” which is clearly the best track on the album. Moody, blues like guitar mixed with Manson doing what he does best and capturing the inner thoughts of the disenchanted. ‘I’m not special, I’m just broken and don’t want to be fixed’ may well be some of the best written lyrics of this year.
Somebody had to step up and capture 2020 on an album and turns out that person was Marilyn Manson. Twenty-five years into his career and Manson once again shows why he deserves to be mentioned alongside artists like David Bowie and Iggy Pop for his creativity and the ability to capture the mood of his fans.
Rating (out of 5):
As I begin my interview with Ron Winter from The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus I want to tell him how much I enjoyed listening to their latest offering The Emergency EP. But things don’t go exactly as I planned as Winter straight-away starts to tell me how much he loves Australia and how much he has missed it during this time of lockdown.
“Oh man it has been an amazing journey,” he says with complete honesty. “We have been in this band for seventeen years and the first time we were ever on the ground was at Soundwave. Since then it has been absolutely amazing… we have never had a bad show in Australia and we’ve consistently come back over and over again and that’s been sweet. We did the tenth anniversary awhile ago and I think that the Australian shows that we did were the best in the world and that wasn’t just because of the band – it was because of the vibe.”
As we talk more about his love affair of Australia we chat about their cover of “Down Under” which Winter says he loves of the lyrics of. That leads me to bring the conversation back to the lyrics on their new EP which to me felt like I was reading Winter’s diary because of how personal they were.
“Thank you,” he says laughing. “There are a lot of bands out there and everybody has a gimmick and ours has always been lyrics and I have always tried to stick to that. With this time all of these songs are directly related to me. Every song on the EP is something that I went through or it happened to somebody close to me.”
“So I have just tried to be as honest as I can and paint that picture,” he says continuing. “That is something that I dealt with because when somebody close to me goes through something I always try to be there with them and I am going through it with them… that is the way friendships are. But yes everything on there is something that I went through or going through currently and that is why I feel like there is some urgency there because it is a crazy time right now right across the board – it doesn’t matter how you look at it. It is just strange times, man.”
As we talk about that I mention the track “Please Unfriend Me” which I admit really resonated with me as I live in a lockdown and read people’s posts on social media about it. I ask Winter whether he has thought about the fact that most of the band’s fans will be listening to these important songs while they are still in lockdown. “I have thought about it,” he admits. “And that is something that I am going through as well… I am going through it with you right now. Here we are talking to each other right across the world and that is cool at least. It’s been weird and tough but I am glad that that is the one song that you have mentioned because that one is super, super fresh. That song wasn’t even mixed thirty days ago, it was written while we were in quarantine so those lyrics in that song… I am literally explaining what it felt like for me to be in quarantine and to see all this madness – that title is exactly how I reacted.”
The Emergency EP is out now through EMI.
GRAMMY® Award-winning, critically-acclaimed alternative rock luminaries, The Smashing Pumpkins return with two new tracks, Cyr’ and ‘The Colour Of Love,’ out on Sumerian Records today!
Recorded in Chicago and produced by Corgan, the new tracks come with the news of a forthcoming studio album in the works with founding members Billy Corgan, James Iha, Jimmy Chamberlin, with longtime guitarist Jeff Schroeder.
“Cyr is dystopic folly,” front-man Billy Corgan reveals, “one soul against the world sort of stuff, set against a backdrop of shifting loyalties and sped up time. To me it stands as both hopeful and dismissive of what is and isn’t possible with faith.”
Listen to ‘Cyr’
Listen to ‘The Colour of Love’
The band also revealed a very special official performance video of ‘Cyr,’ directed by Linda Strawberry, the video was shot remotely, during lockdown in Chicago and Los Angeles. “This is a goth fever dream of pent up emotion – an artistic visual release attempting to create a momentary escape from the emotional black cloud hanging over all of us this year.” Director, Linda Strawberry explains. “A dark seduction filmed in quarantine at a social distance” An undeniable and welcomed reminder as to why one of America’s most influential alternative bands continue to sell out arenas and garner praise worldwide.
Tune in for the performance video for ‘Cyr’
Friday, Aug 28 from 11pm Sydney time
The new songs ‘Cyr’ and ‘The Colour of Love’ follow the band’s 2018 Rick Rubin-produced full-length Shiny And Oh So Bright, Vol. 1 / Lp: No Past. No Future. No Sun And headlining tours that sold in excess of over 350,000 tickets across North America, selling out arenas including The Forum, United Center, Madison Square Garden and more. Also, the band’s first tours in nearly two decades to feature Corgan, Chamberlin, and Iha, alongside Schroeder, they received rave reviews from critics, noting the tour as “a massive gift to their fans” (Uproxx), “a welcome reminder of why those early albums resonated in the first place” (SPIN), and “an unforgettably rewarding and often spectacular odyssey” (Forbes).
Formed in Chicago, IL in 1988, The Smashing Pumpkins released their heralded debut album Gish in 1991 and found mainstream success with 1993’s 4x multi-platinum Siamese Dream and 1995’s 10x multi-platinum Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness. The band has released seven additional studio albums; Adore, Machina/The Machines of God, Machina II/The Friends and Enemies of Modern Music, Zeitgeist, Oceania, Monuments to an Elegy and their last full-length, Shiny and Oh So Bright, Vol 1 / LP: No Past, No Future, No Sun. With over 30 million physical albums sold, the multiple GRAMMY®, MTV VMA, and American Music Award winning band remains an undeniable force in alternative rock.
Having recently signed to Sumerian Records, CEO and founder Ash Avildsen reveals “The Smashing Pumpkins are one of the most influential, iconic and timeless bands of all time. They’ve played a huge part in my life and I can say the same for so many others in the Sumerian family. This a colossal moment for the label but most importantly, it’s the dawn of a new decade of Smashing Pumpkins music.”
Album details to be revealed soon.
‘Cyr’ and ‘The Colour Of Love’ is out everywhere now.
Gold Coast’s favourite prog sons, Mass Sky Raid, are today announcing their return with new single ‘Not Alone’ and with news and new personnel! While it’s been a quick minute in between releases, the four-piece are dropping their new single this Friday, August 28th – the first taste of an album to come in the near future. Add to that – Mass Sky Raid have switched up their lineup and are welcoming two new members to the fold!
Their new track ‘Not Alone’ is an ambient anthem – vocalist Adam Lomas shared his take on the lyrics and his attempt to “…consider the concept of facing one’s own fears as you try and find your own deeper purpose and meaning. The song explores the struggle one has when reaching for your dreams and the uncertainty that it creates when you step outside your own place of comfort to create a more meaningful life. It looks at the battle to find strength to take that unfamiliar and uncertain path which can lead to an ultimately more fulfilling existence.”
The new lineup of the band consists of original members Adam Lomas (Vocals) and Alex Kewley (Guitar) – along with new faces Nic Ross (Drums) and Joshua Whitney (Bass). Lomas went on to say that he is extremely excited about the future of the band with the new roster of faces and talents. “We couldn’t be more excited – to take this time to perfect our music and get it out there has been cathartic – and when we finally hit the live stage again, we can’t wait for everyone to see and hear just how large the sound we have created with this new lineup is!”
2019 saw Mass Sky Raid gain significant funding support through the local Gold Coast Regional Art Development Fund program. This enabled them to continue to develop and expand their unique anthemic sound and work toward their highly anticipated follow up album in collaboration with talented local Gold Coast producer Luke Palmer.
Gold Coast alternative/rock outfit Mass Sky Raid formed in 2011, releasing their debut EP ‘Courage Under Fire’ in mid 2013. That release received strong media reviews – including a 4.5 out of 5-star rating in rock bible Blunt Magazine – and went on to grab support slots with high profile Australian bands including Dead Letter Circus and Twelve Foot Ninja as well as UK exports I Am Giant.
They then followed up their successful EP with their first full length album “Science of Fiction” (produced by Matt Bartlem). Each single released from the album including “Oceans”, “Enemy”, “Sacrifice”, “Edge of the Unknown” and “Closer” gained considerable airplay on rock radio shows around Australia including triple J, Triple M, Rebel FM, 4ZZZ, Andrew Haug Radio, The Faction and FBi, in addition to over 40 stations worldwide. Their single “Closer” was also placed in Jane Gazzo’s Top 30 of Triple M Home Grown tracks in 2017.
Mass Sky Raid’s new single ‘Not Alone’ will see it’s release into the world Friday August 28th and will be available at http://ffm.to/MSR_NA.
Artist: The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus
Album: The Emergency EP
Date Of Release: 28th August 2020
1. A Long Time Ago In A Galaxy Called LA
2. Stuck On A Repeat
3. Brace Yourself
4. Don’t Buy Into It
5. Is This The Real World
6. Please, Unfriend Me
I’ll admit that I came a little bit late to the Red Jumpsuit Apparatus party. Yes, they were a band I had heard about but I never really sat down to listen to their music until I saw how many of my colleagues were excited about the fact they were touring Australia at one time. When I asked them why they felt that way the response seemed to be an over-whelming “this is one of the greatest live bands that you will ever see.”
As it turns out they are not just one of the best live bands going around but are some of the best song-writers as well. You can seriously get lost listening to the lyrics from their brand new Emergency EP. You sit there, listening and nodding as you agree to everything that Ronne Winter is singing, but you also feel like a voyeur as it feels like you are reading the guy’s diary – that is how personal the lyrics are here. Mix that with the amazing guitar work of Josh Burke and Randy Winter and the right mix of heavy music with a hint of electronica and you soon get a perfect track like “Stuck On Repeat.”
Personal lyrics are the forte of this EP though. “A Long Time Ago In A Galaxy Called LA” sees Winter perfectly capture the night that he met his wife and the track is destined to become a live favourite because of its stunning melody. Then there is “Don’t Buy Into It” which is political but delivers its point well.
The thought provoking lyrics continue on “Is This The Real World” which makes you think about the world around us, while Winter’s screams take Red Jumpsuit Apparatus into some of the heaviest territory that they have been into during their careers. That aggression continues on the start of “Please, Unfriend Me” which then turns to mellow vocals as Winters sums up the Covid-19 lockdown in a way that no other song-writer has been able to so far.
The highlight of this EP though is “Brace Yourself.” Everything comes together perfectly on this track. Burke and Winter are on fire, as they throughout the EP – seriously this is some of their finest work to date – while Winters’ naked style of singing reminds us all one he is one of the finest front-men going around at the moment.
It is hard to know how the band have picked any singles off this album because truthfully every track is good enough to have a life of its own on radio. The Emergency EP is some of Red Jumpsuit Apparatus’ best work and is a must have for their fans.
Rating (out of 5):
Fearless Records is pleased to welcome boundary-blurring trio Chase Atlantic, who represent the missing link between woozy trap, nocturnal R&B, and psychedelic alternative through creative sonic experimentation, to the worldwide roster. Chase Atlantic join the Fearless family as the second Australian band on the label.
Today, the group shared the video for the brand new track:
Italian alternative metal band Fenisia will release their new full-length album entitled The Spectator on October 30, 2020 via Eclipse Records. The album was produced by Ray Sperlonga (American Idol) at Rosary Lane Studios, mastered by Collin Davis (Imagica, Deeds of Flesh) at Imperial Mastering, and the cover art was designed by Charles Prabowo at Blackout Brother. See below for the full track listing…
The Spectator is the band’s third full-length concept album named after a historic newspaper published in England in the early 1700s. The paper quickly became the symbol of modern journalism, and the album is a profound philosophical story developed around the character Lord Lumieres, who is both a journalist and a man of science. The first single off the album “Lord Lumieres” identifies him as a metaphor for knowledge and truth. As the story unravels, Lord Lumieres investigates and unmasks the deceptions and lies of every plot made up by fanatical leaders of illusory cults. Other highlights off the album include “Manifesto”, where Lord Lumieres declares his ideals to the world which are born from the enlightenment philosophy, and “Burned In My Brain” which elaborates how he scans both reality and oblivion, in search of the truth. Every song on the album is an epic musical adventure which awaits the listener.
The band have also revealed their first music video from the album, for the first single “Lord Lumieres”. The video was directed by Dario Berardi and shot on location at the historic Itri Castle, Italy.
“The location for the shoot was fascinating because of the historical events that link the castle to the legend of the brigand Fra Diavolo“ says frontman Nic Ciaz. “Filming at the castle was also courageous because of the steep stairways and narrow access points which were designed to protect the inhabitants from attack. This made it impossible to mount our entire backline as we originally planned for the video. The fantastic setting of the castle, the details and natural lighting effects created by the imposing walls immediately made us understand how the presence of all the equipment wasn’t even necessary to get the right atmosphere we wanted for the video. We thank the local administration for allowing us to access the building. It was a fantastic experience!”