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EP PREMIERE + INTERVIEW: Indian Heavy Metal band Knight

Knight are a heavy metal band from Silchar, Assam. The duo of vocalist/guitarist Shibam Talukdar and bassist Soumyadeep Nath Barbhuiyan have been working on their EP High on Voodoo for quite some time now and it is going to be released next week via new label Slaytanic Records. We’ve got an exclusive stream to it below.

I spoke to vocalist/guitarist Shibam Talukdar about their influences, their soon to be released EP and plans for the coming year below

Transcending Obscurity (Peter K): Hi Shibam, you have been working on your EP High on Voodoo for some time now. How does it feel now that it is releasing soon?

Hi, Peter. Thanks for the interview. Yeah, the release of High on Voodoo has been on hold for quite some time now. It feels great to know that the EP will finally see the light of the day. I’m pretty excited about the release since it is the debut offering by my band.

TO: Why did you decide to start a heavy/power metal band? What about the sub genre appeals to you?

I have been a fan of heavy metal bands like Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Saxon, Accept, Running Wild, etc. for a long time and I think heavy metal as a genre appeals more to me than any other form of music. Around 2013, I was listening to a lot of NWOTHM bands like Skull Fist, Enforcer, Cauldron, etc. That’s when I decided to form a traditional heavy metal band. As clichéd as it may sound, I wanted to keep the spirit of heavy metal alive, and that was the sole motivation behind the formation of Knight.

A number of NWOTHM bands have formed over the past decade or so, and I think I can connect to the movement because these bands are trying to play music true to the roots of old school metal. I cannot go back in time to the glory days of heavy metal when steel and thunder reigned supreme, but this movement, for me, is the next best thing because it is happening right now – at this moment. I can follow releases, read interviews, and watch shows by my favourite bands in real time. It feels like I am, somehow, a part of the entire movement, and that’s an awesome feeling.

TO: As you are a duo, what is the writing process you follow?

I write all of the music and the lyrics. Soumyadeep Nath Barbhuiyan helps in arranging the songs.

TO: The first single from your High on Voodoo EP, The Ventriloquist is reminisce of the NWOBHM sound. Do tell us more about the EP.

Thank you. The EP consists of four tracks which are in the same vein. All the four tracks deliver unrelenting traditional heavy metal assault from start to finish. The EP was written and recorded around two and a half years back, but its release was stalled for a long period of time. Thanks to Brijraj Agarwal, the EP is finally getting a proper release via Slaytanic Records. So far, the response has been phenomenal and I am really grateful for that.

TO: The EP was produced by Soumyadeep Nath Barbhuiyan. What do you feel are the pros and con of recording yourself?

The best part about producing it ourselves is that we had total control over the sound. We wanted the EP to sound like it was straight out of the 80’s and I think we could achieve the sound we were looking for. However, since the EP was recorded around two and a half years back, there may be a few issues here and there. Rest assured, the next release, which will be a full-length, will have better production as we have better equipment in the studio right now.

TO: What have you been listening to lately (metal and non-metal)? Are there any acts that have inspired you of late?

I like to listen to different genres of music. I don’t curate a list of albums for a month or week. I just listen to whatever I feel like at a particular point of time. Currently, I’m discovering some of this year’s retrowave releases along with listening to some heavy rock and proto-metal.

I draw inspiration from anything that sounds good to my ears. Like I said, while I was writing the EP, I was listening to a lot of NWOTHM and I still do. The greats like Thin Lizzy, Blue Öyster Cult, Deep Purple, Scorpions, etc. are sources of endless inspiration for me. Newer bands like Black Magic, Eternal Champion, Black Trip (now VOJD) have also influenced me a lot which will probably show in the full-length.

TO: What are your plans for the coming year? Do you have any shows/tour planned in support of the EP?

I have already started working on a full-length and hopefully will wrap up the entire process by the end of next year. As of now, we are only two people in Knight. As soon as we have a full line-up ready, we’ll start touring.

TO: Thanks for answering all the questions. Do you have any final words?

It was my pleasure. I would like to say that people should do what they love doing, without harming others. I believe heavy metal is a sanctuary for many people from the crummy things in life. For others, it is a source of strength to stand against any problem life throws at them, and flip the bird to it. I am not saying that people should support all the artists they come to learn about, but if one comes across an artist who truly inspires them or adds meaning to their life; it’s only fair that they support them in whatever way they can.

Also, our debut EP is releasing on the 25th of December, 2017. If you like traditional heavy metal, you may want to give it a listen, and I hope you will dig the music.

 

To order a copy of the EP on cd email: slaytanicrecords@gmail.com

Knight Facebook

Slaytanic Records Facebook
 

 

SONG PREMIERE: U.S. Doom Band Bestialord

Bestialord- Law of the Burning

Formed last year by ex-Manilla Road bassist Mark Anderson alongside his bandmate Chris Johnson from Sanctus Infernum, Bestialord offers up their version of occult/horror themed doom on their debut full length ‘Law of the Burning’.  While there have been plenty of bands that have fallen into that category in recent years, where Bestialord differs is in their ability to pull in riffs that recall death metal’s earlier days just as much as doom.  It’s a combination that’s drenched in an ominous, gritty atmosphere that feels appropriately old-school without treading too closely to any one particular band.  With ‘Law of the Burning’ due out on January 1st courtesy of Cimmerian Shade Recordings and Symbol of Domination Productions, today we’re premiering the track All Fall Down.

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May 2017 Highlights – TO STAFF

Music to me has always been a gateway away from reality. But these days I come to understand as to how this world’s reality shapes and influences music, while the music itself offers escapism to those that seek it during troubled times. The past few weeks have just added more reasons and examples as to why this world is turning into this terrible place. It’s good that we had some solid metal and punk releases to lean on this month. ~ Shrivatsan R

Amiensus (USA) – All Paths Lead to Death (Black / Death Metal, Apathia Records)

Amiensus

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SONG PREMIERE: U.S. Thrash/Heavy Metal Band Death of Kings

Death of Kings- Kneel Before None

Atlanta’s Death of Kings has had plenty of time to perfect their blend of thrash and heavy metal, as they’ve focused on short form releases like demos and EP’s since forming in 2009.  Last month the group released the single ‘Hell Comes to Life’, and now they’re finally set to put out their debut full length ‘Kneel Before None’.  Set for release June 2nd via Boris Records, it’s clear that the amount of time Death of Kings has spent honing their craft has been put to good use, as the album is full of blisteringly intense riffs and soaring vocals that blur the lines between abrasive thrash screaming/singing and falsetto heavy metal singing.  Today we’re premiering the album opener Shadow of the Reaper so you can hear just why these guys are one of the more promising bands to come out of Atlanta in recent memory.

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February 2017 Highlights – TO Staff

When I put up the post for the February 2017 highlights in the staff group, I honestly did not expect these many entries. My tunnel vision and assumption that February’s tend to have few notable releases, led me to believe that there were only a handful of records worth noticing this month. Good thing I work with a bunch of talented scribes that always turn my attention towards the stuff I overlooked. Here are the albums that we believe you must check out this month  ~ Shrivatsan R

Ancst (Germany) – Furnace (Black Metal / Crust Punk, Independent)

Ancst

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EXCLUSIVE PREMIERE – Spanish doom/sludge band MOTHERSLOTH

So today we have the opportunity of doing a full album stream for the Spanish sludge/doom monsters Mothersloth on the respected Italian label for this kind of music, Argonauta Records. The music is of high quality, building up slowly but setting up a solid foundation of what’s to come. It’s immediately reminiscent of early Danzig but the doom influences seep in and make things interesting and heavier. Overall, it’s a smooth yet grainy affair, with some massive riffing going on to soaring vocals. The whole album resonates with an old school vibe but the sound isn’t necessary dated. It’s this melding of genres that lends to it a fresh feel, something wholly intriguing and charming. It’s been a while since I heard someone try and sing like Glenn Danzig, and even though the vocalist here isn’t exactly trying to imitate him, the influence is healthy and well sustained. The album maintains an uptempo plodding momentum and doesn’t wallow too much in the sludge trappings, and coupled with inspiring vocals, elevates it above hordes of other such bands.

‘Moon Omen’ comes out on March 3rd, 2017 and happens to be the band’s second full length album. Argonauta have a fine album to offer and fans of heavy metal/doom metal will be sure to derive some pleasure out of it. Stream the album in its entirety below and don’t forget to support the music if you like it!

Argonauta Records | Argonauta Records Facebook | Mothersloth Facebook 

 

 

Long-running old school heavy metal band LUCIDREAMS to release album under Transcending Obscurity India

LUCIDREAMS from Bangalore, India have been around for a seriously long time. There’s a lot of passion in the music and a heady beat to go with it, and we’re glad to put out their latest and indeed much-awaited album, ‘Ballox’.

Transcending Obscurity India (sub-label) owner Kunal Choksi states, “I’m happy to put out the long-running Bangalore-based heavy metal band’s much-awaited album, ‘Ballox’. It holds a nostalgic charm and has its own individual flavour as well. Though originally supposed to be out on the now defunct distribution sub-label, this has been upgraded to the Transcending Obscurity India sub-label and will see a release in March. A slew of wonderful packages have been designed for this one, setting a new standard hopefully for the bands here.”

Narayan from LUCIDREAMS says,”It’s awesome to finally put LUCIDREAMS‘ music out on a CD, considering the band’s been around for more than two decades. It’s even more special to partner with Kunal and Transcending Obscurity, considering everything the label stands for, both locally and internationally. We look forward to an exciting future together.”

Jayanth adds, “This release is extremely special and we’d like to dedicate this to our brother Suraj Dutt. A band that has seen over 20 musicians, Suraj made a massive impact, musically and personally. It’s an honour to see the release out and to work with Kunal from Transcending Obscurity India on this.”

LUCIDREAMS Bandcamp | LUCIDREAMS Facebook | LUCIDREAMS Store

INTERVIEW+ ALBUM PREMIERE: Norwegian Heavy Metal Band Ghost Avenue

Ghost Avenue- Impact

When you think of Norway, chances are that the metal bands that come to mind are on the extreme side of the spectrum.  Certainly much of the metal from that country over the past two decades has skewed towards black metal and similar styles, but there are some talented acts that channel melodic heavy metal if you dig a bit deeper.  One of these is Ghost Avenue, formerly known as Ghost.  Formed in 2002, the group has been offering their own take on melodic heavy metal and hard rock across two full length albums, and now they’re ready to release album number three via Pitch Black Records.  Titled ‘Impact’, this is a sci-fi concept album that features powerful, soaring vocal lines courtesy of singer Kim Sandvik and catchy guitar leads.  With the album set to come out this Friday, February 3rd, we’re excited to offer you an exclusive first listen of the entire release alongside an interview with the band.

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INTERVIEW: Greek Heavy Metal Band Agatus

Agatus- The Eternalist

In October Agatus released their third album ‘The Eternalist, their first full length in nearly fourteen years.  The interim period saw two limited EP released in 2011 and 2012, with the title track of 2012’s ‘Gilgamesh’ finding its way onto ‘The Eternalist’.  While earlier incarnations of the band explored elements of black metal that were reminiscent of some of their other Greek counterparts, over the years Agatus has gravitated towards heavy metal and progressive rock to create a sound that’s epic in scale yet warm and inviting at all the right moments.  Traces of black metal remain, but this is a very different effort when compared to the group’s back catalog and it finds them reaching new heights.  ‘The Eternalist’ draws you in with bombastic riffing that has traces of early progressive rock and traditional heavy metal wrapped in a black metal esthetic, revealing more nuances with each listen.

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