The year is winding on and we’re about out of winter in this part of the globe. Music is still coming out hot and heavy as artists pent up from pandemic tour disruptions have turned to recording to get their fix. I’ve got a bit from several walks of the sonic aisle to cover this time around so let’s have at it.
Kreator – Hate Uber Alles
The German thrash legends are set to release their 15th studio album bearing the same name as this lead single on June 3rd. There is one change in the band, as former DragonForce bassist Frederic Leclercq makes his studio debut with the group.
The bassist may have changed but all else seems to be the same with camp Kreator. This song offers the same thrash with Gothenburg-accented metal the band reinvigorated themselves with over 20 years ago. This song fits in well alongside past title tracks like Enemy Of God and Hordes Of Chaos, joining the tradition of strong title songs and singles from Kreator. It’s hard to imagine that the upcoming album will be anything but the same style on offer here – thrash with topical themes dealing in the dark side of life and society.
As a note since I’m talking about them anyway – the band’s 2001 opus that reignited their career and perhaps the thrash scene as a whole, Violent Revolution, will be the album of the week this coming Monday.
Amon Amarth – Put Your Back Into The Oar
The Swedish Vikings are back again with a new single. This is apparently a standalone single and does not indicate a new album on the horizon.
In the past several years there has been a bit of a “hipster Viking” fad, fueled in no small part by Amon Amarth as well as hit TV shows like Vikings. Just as the trend came about it found many detractors and today it’s easy to find people bemoaning the presence of Viking cosplayers.
Rather than slide away from the now frowned upon trend, Amon Amarth have leaned 1000% into it. Put Your Back Into The Oar is a full-on Viking row song. It sits in fine with the group’s legacy that has seen them become one of the most visible extreme metal bands in existence. It will also no doubt stoke more flames among the detractors who have grown weary of the band’s Viking image, but that’s always part of the fun.
Brennen Leigh – If Tommy Duncan’s Voice Was Booze
It’s time to go country for a bit. I first encountered Brennen last year when she opened for Charley Crockett on tour. She put on a great set and I began exploring her catalog of absolutely old-school country.
Brennen is preparing to release a new album on May 6 titled Obsessed With The West. The album will explore Western swing and features swing legends Asleep At The Wheel backing Brennen. This is the lead single from that effort and it beckons another excellent set from Leigh. I haven’t been keeping up with country near as much as I used to but it’s nice to be reminded of the finer points of the genre now and again.
Destruction – Diabolical
We didn’t get enough German thrash yet, so long time act Destruction have been kind enough to present their new effort. This song is taken from the album of the same name and is due April 8.
The song is signature Destruction and indicates that we are in for yet another thrash gem. The video gives screen time to the band’s Mad Butcher mascot as he, uh, enjoys a snack. It seems as though Germany might make a huge impact on metal this year, what with Destruction, Kreator and Blind Guardian all with albums in queue.
Dream Widow – March Of The Insane
This new thrash act came out of nowhere with a blistering track that recalls Midnight and Toxic Holocaust, very dirty and gritty thrash which is a sound right up my alley. This band should rocket straight to the top of the metal scene ….
… except that they’re already very popular. Dream Widow is actually the Foo Fighters. Dave Grohl and company recorded this and an entire album’s worth of thrash for their upcoming horror-comedy film Studio 666. This album is getting a release “any day now” according to Grohl and may see the light of day by the time this post goes live on Wednesday, February 23rd. However exactly it goes down I’m quite impressed by this and will look forward to hearing what they got up to in terms of a full album.
Robin Trower – No More Worlds To Conquer
The legendary British guitarist is back with a new single sharing the name of a new album releasing April 29. Trower has release over 20 solo albums and that count doesn’t include his time with Procol Harum or his collaborations with Jack Bruce and others. This song offer a mellow groove and sings of someone who had it all but what he really wanted. For Trower it’s another gem in his extensive collection and it’s nice to see him still going, he’ll be 77 when the album releases.
Dorothy – Rest In Peace
This a new song from one of the 2010’s more interesting new rock prospects. Though she has yet to formally announce a new album she has released a few singles from what are presumed to be included on Gifts From The Holy Ghost, a previously announced title. The single is released just ahead of a major nationwide tour.
The song is a pretty epic and powerful tune that sees Dorothy again having at somebody, a theme she’s used to a fair bit of success on past albums. She is really, really not into whoever she is laying to rest in this song, the lyrical fare is pretty brutal towards her target. The song is well done and bodes well for the album we’ll hopefully get more news about in the near future.
Kurt Vile – Like Exploding Stones
This preview song is ahead of Kurt’s new album (watch my moves) which is due April 15. This is totally new territory for me as I haven’t heard a note of his before playing this song, I haven’t heard his stuff or his prior work with War On Drugs.
This is a very interesting track, I dig the chilled out vibe of it. It’s not something I always seek out but in the right mood I can appreciate something like this. It’s a bit hard to keep up with the enormous indie scene some times. I’ll keep an ear out for the full album when it’s out.
Halestorm – The Steeple
Halestorm are back with a new album Back From The Dead due May 6. This is the album’s second single released as the title track saw play last summer.
I have not previously been into Halestorm that much. I’ve heard great things about them from a lot of different circles but for whatever reason their music hasn’t taken with me. This song might be the one that gets it done – I’m absolutely enjoying this track. I don’t know if they’re doing something different or if I’m just in a more open place mentally or what, but I’ll be on the lookout for when this album hits.
Liam Gallagher – Everything’s Electric
On offer is the lead single from Liam’s long-announced third solo album C’Mon, You Know, out May 27 and destined to be Liam’s most-used Twitter hashtag for the next year.
The song marks Dave Grohl’s second appearance in this post. Liam had his album pretty well finished when Grohl rang with this song on offer. Liam went back to the studio and cut the track and it’s now the album’s lead single.
The song is well done and a pretty chill and “vibe-y” track. It’s not quite the all-out banger Liam was discussing months ago, so perhaps he had a different song in mind for the lead single before Dave got a hold of him. At first the tune doesn’t stand out as much as the singles from his prior release Why Me? Why Not but the song is growing on me with multiple listens. Liam will certainly want to go into the summer well-armed with songs as he is preparing a headlining set at Knebworth, the site of Oasis’ historic triumph 26 years ago. While plenty of Oasis standards will certainly get time I’m sure Liam also wants to have his solo songs stand on their own as well, if for no other reason than to keep up the perpetual sneering contest between he and his brother.
That’s a wrap on this huge edition of upcoming music. As the temperature warms up it seems like a massive amount of new music will be heading our way. Hopefully these and other acts will get to air their songs out on stage out of the shadow of the pandemic and the industry can start making up for lost time and money.