MIDNIGHT: Creeps Back In

It almost beggars belief that, 17 years into Midnight’s career, they remain something of a best kept secret—a seditious pleasure celebrated only by those who lurk in the darkest alleys of the underground. Founded in Cleveland in 2003, Midnight is a one-man shop, conceived by multi-instrumentalist Athenar, whose original vision saw the band staying well out of the spotlight, favoring EPs and split releases over full albums. The approach was both celebrated and bemoaned by his growing fan base.

KIRK WINDSTEIN: Going It Alone

Crowbar and Down guitarist Kirk Windstein steps outside of his wheelhouse on his debut solo album Dream in Motion. Handling every instrument except drums, its 10 tracks are a fantastic affair, including a riveting cover version of 70 rock icons Jethro Tull’s “Aqualung.”

SEVEN SPIRES: Under the Cathedral

Formed in 2013 in Boston, symphonic/power/black/melodic death metal band Seven Spires’ members met while attending the renowned Berklee College of Music. Featuring frontwoman Adrienne Cowan, guitarist Jack Kosto, bassist Peter de Reyna, and drummer Chris Dovas, the band has just released its sophomore affair, Emerald Seas, through Frontiers Music.

GOD DETHRONED: Under Pressure

Even after 11 albums and a history that goes back further than most of you reading this have been alive, God Dethroned’s Henri Sattler is still bright-eyed and bushy tailed about the band he formed as an unruly, Christ hating teenager back in 1991 in the Dutch village of Beilen. It’s the band he still leads—and is still excited about—as a rebellious adult who has failed to conform…

MARK MORTON: Lamb of God Guitarist Steps Outside the Box

Lamb of God guitarist Mark Morton steps outside of his day job with his second solo effort Ether. Known for his extreme metal style of playing with Lamb of God, Morton strips the music down with five acoustic songs, including covers of The Black Crowe’s “She Talks to Angels” and Pearl Jam’s “Black.”

ANNIHILATOR: Looking Forward, Not Back

In the interest of full disclosure, my Annihilator fandom goes back to 1986 and the Phantasmagoria demo. Back in the day, the four track demo may have had the most ridiculous looking piece of headgear for its cover art, but it set my home and native land ablaze. Annihilator ended up being placed in a stead with Sacrifice, Razor, and Slaughter to often be referred to as The Big Four of Canadian Thrash…

KONVENT: Wake Up and Kill Your Masters

The rise of Copenhagen quartet Konvent has been astronomical. When bassist Heidi Withington Brink got the idea to direct her lifelong love of music towards actually creating and playing it, she didn’t let her inexperience get in the way. Teaming up with a collection of fellow exuberant amateurs from the local scene, Konvent was born, and in four short years, the doom/death quartet—Heidi, guitarist Sara Helena Nørregaard, vocalist Rikke Emilie List, and drummer Julie Simonsen—has gone from nervous newcomers to Danish festival regulars, a band with European tours under its belt, and a deal with Napalm Records, who are issuing the band’s debut, Puritan Masochism.

SATYRICON: Rebel Angels

Hindsight can be a funny thing. I’ll admit that, at the time, I didn’t quite hip myself to what Satyricon was doing with their fourth full-length LP, Rebel Extravaganza [1999]. Gone were the medieval trappings of The Shadowthrone and Nemesis Divina, and in its place were songs that were cold and aggressive, with a very noticeable mean streak. Oh sure, I eventually grew to dig the album pretty hard, based largely on the presence of undeniable jams like “Havoc Vulture” and “Filthgrinder,” but the actual sound of the album always felt like it could’ve used improvement.

NOSTALGIA PERSONIFIED: Nickelodeon’s Pete & Pete and All That on Tour

If you’re a child of the 90s, meaning you were born in the mid to late 80s and grew up during that seminal period, you probably begged your parents to let you watch Nickelodeon for 24 hours straight on the regular. Amazing programming such as The Adventures of Pete & Pete and All That were comedy staples in every healthy American kid’s diet. Thankfully, Danny Tamberelli and Lori Beth Denberg, giants in kid comedy from both of these pivotal hits, are giving us another taste of personified nostalgia with...Nostalgia Personified

LACUNA COIL: Releasing the Anima to the World

Outburn had the pleasure of speaking with Italian melodic rock star Cristina Scabbia of Lacuna Coil at the band’s Los Angeles show with All That Remains a few days before the release of the band’s new album, Black Anima. We dug deep into the inspiration behind Black Anima—Lacuna Coil’s ninth full-length studio album—and Cristina’s personal philosophy on the healing power of music.

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