Author: Simon Rushworth

TYKETTO – REACH

Out Now (Frontiers Records) Tyketto have forged their reputation on incendiary live shows fronted by the effervescent Danny Vaughn and January’s rescheduled UK tour dates can’t come soon enough. However, if there’s one criticism of the Hard Rock Hell favourites it’s that they simply don’t produce enough new music! If supply just about meets demand where the band’s must-see gigs are concerned then the constant clamour for fresh songs suggests that’s where Vaughn and co. still have work to do. Reach goes a long way towards quenching the thirst for a new take on Tyketto. Boasting the combined talents...

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PRIMORDIAL – GODS TO THE GODLESS (LIVE)

Out Now (Metal Blade) Anyone who has witnessed one of Primordial’s (frustratingly rare) live shows will have the experience burned into their memory. The Irishmen are one of the most emotionally intense, moving and supremely powerful acts on the extreme metal scene – and in A.A. Nemtheanga, they have a frontman who can rule over an audience…from first note to last. Bottling that primal energy and releasing it as a live album will always be difficult but this opus – recorded at Balingen’s Bang Your Head Festival last year – is a fine taste of Primordial in full flow. Gods...

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METALLICA – HARDWIRED…TO SELF DESTRUCT

Out Now (Blackened) Death Magnetic’s noisier moments aside, the noughties were a nightmare for Metallica. And things didn’t get much better when the band unleashed Lulu – 2011’s unloved and uninspiring collaboration with Lou Reed. Fans of the biggest of the Big Four could have been forgiven for slapping their battered Master Of Puppets picture disc on the turntable and pretending the past quarter of a century had never happened. But it did. And maybe Metallica needed the lean years to rediscover the glory days. Hardwired…To Self Destruct can’t be deemed a classic just yet – only time will...

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RANGER – SPEED & VIOLENCE

Out Now (Spinefarm) Helsinki’s Ranger may not have been around when speed metal first reared its head but that hasn’t stopped them spearheading the style’s resurgence. The youngsters know how to flick on the afterburners and go for the jugular, as their string of EPs – and last year’s Where Evil Dwells album – demonstrate. Speed & Violence, unsurprisingly, offers more of the same: lightning riffs, reverb soaked vocals and raw aggression are Ranger’s hallmarks, and they’re evident throughout this opus. Night Slasher is a particular highlight, with its furious, unhinged attack and proto-thrash vibe, while Satanic Panic is...

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THE QUIREBOYS – TWISTED LOVE

Out Now (Off Yer Rocker Recordings)   Back on the road across the UK this month, relentless rock and roll troubadours The Quireboys could well have stolen a march on their rivals in 2016 and delivered the album of the year in the tense and emotive Twisted Love. It’s perhaps no coincidence that Spike and co. have just been revealed as one of the first acts to play Ramblin’ Man Fair’s Blues Stage next July. This record is rich in self-reflection, deeply affecting melodies and lyrics that prove you really can teach an old dog new tricks. Add in...

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