L&D wish you a blasting beginning of the week! Here's todays Featured Bands!
Omnium Gatherum (FIN) - Hailing from Finland, Omnium Gatherum is a band playing fierce death metal with breathtaking melodies and progressive originality for people in the metal field looking for something different that still is catchy. A band that truly walks it's own path proudly and shows some new exciting sides on identifiable character. A band of many directions and styles, some of them clearly visible while others were more unseen - namely working and keeping it all together under the moniker of melodic life-and-death metal and bastardizing it with various influences. Adult oriented death metal! During the first spring rays of 1996 a thing called OMNIUM GATHERUM took its first steps and shapes in a gloomy and oily cellar in the south-eastern harbour town of Kotka in Finland. Omnipotent young fellas Markus Vanhala and Olli Lappalainen (who's still a part of the band as an art designer & have made all the OG artworks since the very first demo) were extremely influenced by the rapidly ascending wave of scandinavian melodic death metal and the polar alliance between brutal death metal spiced with the despairing Finnish melancholy. The result of intensive training was seen as a four demos; "Forbidden Decay" '97, "OG-ep"'98, "Gardens, Templesâ€¦This Hell!" '99 & "Wastrel" '01, that built up a quality cult following in the underground scene and set standards for the up-coming. After the highly acclaimed "Wastrel" demo the band signed a deal with the growing UK metal label Rage Of Achilles and were sent right away to the Sonic Pump studio in Helsinki with Nino Laurenne to re-record their latest demo as debut EP entitled "Steal The Light" during the last days of 2001. The debut EP was released after a long, long wait in September 2002 and both the critics and the audience seemed to like the stuff and the metal medias awakened for the new Finns. The debut full-length album "Spirits And August Light" was released in April 2003 via Rage Of Achilles and gave the band some well deserved attention within the underground metal community and the press. The album showed another side to the light: despite the clear and catchy melodies and the stable rhythm all along the way it had a lifelike taste of dirtiness to it, with desperate love and uninvited hate searching for an outlet, like something you didn't want to see happen but it did nonetheless. The reviews were unbelievably great, for example being the only Finnish band then so far with a debut review of 5/5 in Kerrang! and all the major metal magazines followed in the same vein. So far, so good... so what! Next in line to be was the band signing to a metal giant label Nuclear Blast in the autumn of 2004 to release the second album "Years In Waste", as also re-issues from the "Steal The Light/Spirits And August Light" via NB. More technical, more progressive and sophisticated, thus naturally more difficult also, while at the same time keeping distance to the listener. The new recipe was completed with themes from the wasted youth and the verses of fall. "YIW" showed another way out from the great depression, and OG did the first festival appearances outside Finland. In the spring 2006 an era came to an end. The long-time singer Antti Filppu was replaced by Jukka Pelkonen aka J, sealing the long-awaited homecoming of our Wastrel. The debut album of "The new OmG" - featuring J on vocals - was released in April 2007 after a successful UK headlining tour and signing with British Candlelight Records. "Snakes Way" is an endless road dealing with the choices in our existence and the temptation within the mind of every soul on this third planet of ours, and unfortunately so many people are stuck. Gladly OG didn't get stuck with the album and the "Snakes Way" conducted the band to do tours abroad with Dark Tranquillity, Caliban and Entombed, spiced with a large amount of Finnish headlining gigs and the #31 position in the Finnish national album chart! The 4th album "The Redshift" & year 2008 introduced the camp OG in its very strongest form seen yet. The album were recorded in the spring days of 2008 once again by their court engineer Teemu Aalto and it was mixed/mastered at Unisound Studio in Sweden by the legendary metal-mastermind Dan SwanÃ¶ himself, who even commented the album with his nice words: "You won't find a better album in years!" The album was full of contrasts; melodic but yet brutal, lots of changing atmospheres, moods from sorrow to joy and from hope to despair, very catchy but still stand outs after lots of listens and the sands of time. The album themes are about that certainty, when you reach a point in your existence that makes you transform into something new and improved, It is about going faster and yet more calmly than ever before, It is a salute to knowing oneself and the space that is around! The redshift riders were sent to playing all over the Europe about 100 shows in support of the album, doing festivals and tours in Europe alongside Nile, Grave, Swallow The Sun, Insomnium & Dark Tranquillity, and even gained a #24 position in the Finnish album chart. Change for the better!"New World Shadows" - the most honest, unique and grandiloquent magnum opus of Omnium Gatherum shows an ever-evolving band unafraid for musical exploration even after 15 years of intensity! The moods and emotions swirling in the midst of the cauldron are the result of a challenging dramaturgy based on thinking outside the box and reflected creativity beyond learnt structures. About the lyrical themes, for every "new world" there are "shadows" to be reckon with - It is merely a constant flux of variating motives and action. "New World Shadows" masterpiece were again recorded by Teemu Aalto & mixed by Dan SwanÃ¶, who also provided some amazing clean vocals for the album. This is for sure the great northern death metal without limitations - really melodic and intelligent but still aggressive and heavy as a really heavy thing, aside quoting feels from prog rock to even AOR - this is adult oriented death metal in it's most epic & purest form!.
"Ryan Boc: Sequester"
Sequester (CAN) -Sequester is the musical project of Canadian singer-songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Ryan Boc. Founded in 2005, all of the material thus far has been written, performed, recorded and produced by Boc, having drawn inspiration from various genres of music including heavy and thrash metal, progressive and psychedelic rock, traditional English and Scottish folk, grunge, blues, jazz, and classical. Sequester’s sound has been described as being both expressive and melodic, with frequent use of counterpoint and harmonized layering in both the guitar and vocal sections. The songs are usually long in duration due to progressive structuring and arrangement, utilizing numerous sectional changes throughout each piece. The lyrics range anywhere from personal topics to fantasy literature, history, folklore and mythology; generally they are sung with a clean voice— oftentimes with thrashy, more aggressive overtones. Graduating with a combined degree in Music and Computer Science from the University Of Victoria, Ryan Boc had been writing and recording music both in his classes and his spare time. He obtained initial exposure after recording a number of Blind Guardian covers and posting them on the band's official forums. Met with positive feedback in regards to his guitar playing and unique vocals, Boc moved on to writing original songs under the name Sequester, and has since created his own sound by combining elements from a vast array of different musical styles.
DoomSword (ITA) - DoomSword are an Epic/Heavy/Viking Metal band hailing from the foothills of the Alps in Varese, Lombardy. DOOMSWORD is one of the few bands firmly rooted in the sound of '80s heavy metal while being able to create something new for the next era in metal. The first nucleus of the band was formed in 1996 when Deathmaster and Guardian Angel joined forces to create an ancient music project called 1014 AD. The project was entirely acoustic and the style was very influenced by medieval music. After a short hiatus the duo re arranged the existing material into proper metal songs in the way of Warlord, Cirith Ungol, Candlemass, Medieval Steel, maintaining a strong medieval influence but adding a heavy epic vein. The project changed name from 1014AD to DoomSword, and a first demo was recorded in 1997 called "Sacred Metal". Guardian Angel took care of guitars and drums, Deathmaster of vocals and guitars, and a session bass player was recruited to record the 5 tracks comprised on the demo. The band immediately received a good response from critics and fans and in 1998, Italian label Underground Symphony signed DoomSword for the release of an album, and bass player Dark Omen and singer Gabriele "Nightcomer" Grilli were recruited for the recording of the first album. The homonymous debut album was released in 1999, and it's still considered a classic of Epic Heavy Metal. After the release of the first album, the line-up dramatically changed. Guardian Angel and Nightcomer left the band and were replaced by Grom (ex-Ancient) at the drums, The Forger at rhythm guitar, Gianluca Ferro (a.k.a. Guardian Angel II) at lead guitars, Deathmaster resumed his original role of singer in the band, which he would maintain to this day. Italian metal label Dragonheart signed DoomSword and with this entirely new set up the band would go on to release the critically acclaimed "Resound The Horn" in 2002 and - after Grom left to be replaced by Wrathlord in June 2002 - the band began their live activity taking part at important European festivals including the very first edition of the Keep It True. The sound of the band became more varied and melodic, and more strictly epic, abandoning in part the obscurity of the first album. As the live activity intensified, Gianluca Ferro left the band to be replaced by Sacred Heart in 2003, right after the publication of DoomSword's "Viking" album "Let Battle Commence". The album was a remarkable success and DoomSword were awarded best Italian band of 2003 by the popular Italian magazine Metal Hammer. The band evolved into a dark, heavy, oppressive battle-like sound, with Bathory being a strong influence on the band's compositions. In 2004, after intense touring and participations to festivals such as the Bang Your Head and the Tradate Iron Fest (w/ Virgin Steele and Omen), and the replacement of Dark Omen with Midryasi bass player Geilt, DoomSword took a break, only to return in 2007 with the masterpiece "My Name Will Live On", an album of extreme creativity that included elements from all the previous albums with new features such as fast songs and more intricate instrumental parts. In 2011, DoomSword return with "The Eternal Battle", an album that represents a new benchmark for Epic Metal, with the usual passion and emotion of the DoomSword sound combined with a further increased musical intelligence and depth, proving once again that DoomSword are a band in constant evolution with a lot more to give to Metal. Since the recording of "The Eternal Battle" bass player Geilt (who recorded the album) has been replaced by Fury'n'Grace bassist Christian "Nidhoggr" Grilli, already a member of DoomSword's side-project Gjallarhorn.
Odd Logic (USA) - US band ODD LOGIC was formed in 2003, originally as a trio consisting of Sean Thompson (vocals, guitars, keyboards), Sam Blades (bass) and Jeffery Leigh (drums, percussion, programming). Inspired by acts such as Queensryche, Symphony X and Styx they created their own brand of progressive metal, resulting in debut album Parallax Panorama (created and released the same year featured a guest percussionist and bassist who are in reality Sean's alter egos). Later on Odd Logic became a solo vehicle for Thompson, who decided to start making concept albums in a manner similar to what Arjen Lucassen has done for many years with his Ayreon project. He took over all instrumental duties himself, and featured guests for voiceovers and vocals, A few guests including Sean's wife, family, and friends have helped with voice-overs. Other releases include Legends Of Monta: Part I (2006), Part II (2009), and the Sync-To-Movie adventure Over The Underworld (2011).
Ofsoski (AU) - Ofsoski is a solo project of Australian based musician Richard Ofsoski. The music consists of various metal styles from tradititional, Neo Classical, Goth, Power, to Prog with a strong emphesis on melody. Richard Is also the voice of Brisbane based metal band Sedition and features on the bands second release 'World Of Illusion'. He also recently featured performing 3 guitar solos on the debut album for the Russian melodic metal band Eclipse Hunter. Ofsoskis well recieved debut album 'Later Than Never' was released in 2007 and after a hiatus due to personal tragedy the follow up album 'The Next Dance is finally set to be released Dec 2010. The Next Dance is the next chapter and features some notable guest musicians Richard Ofsoski Vocals Guitar, Bass Keys: Christian Nativo (Vanishing Point), Drums: Andre Osokin (Eclipse Hunter), Keyboards: Andre Andersen (Royal Hunt).