ALESTORM: The Virtues of Piracy

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Ahoy! If the coronavirus hadn’t worked its deleterious magic on the planet’s seven billion-plus inhabitants, the originators of pure Scottish pirate metal—none of whom are actually based in Scotland any longer, ironically enough—would just now be blasting from the starting blocks for the promotional and touring cycle for Curse of the Crystal Coconut, their latest album of metallic swashbuckling.

HJELVIK: From Start to Finish

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Hjelvik quietly cut ties with the band he was a co-founding member of and after a spell of downtime has returned with Welcome to Hel, the debut album by his eponymously named project. To say Erlend cut ties with Kvelertak is a bit of an understatement, though.

GWAR

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“GWAR lives motherfucker!” says new frontman Blothar after every show as the band leaves the stage. And it’s true. Not even the death of original frontman Oderus Urungus (Dave Brockie) in 2014, as well as their fallen brother guitarist Flattus Maximus (Cory Smoot) in 2011, can stop GWAR.

DESTRUCTION: One Point Vanish

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You can’t say “legendary thrash metal band” without mentioning Destruction. We spoke to Destruction vocalist and bassist Schmier to discuss Born to Perish, writing and recording with new members, the band’s history, and his views of the German Big Four.

KIRK WINDSTEIN: Going It Alone

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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.”

ENSIFERUM: Into the Water

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Thalassic, being the band’s most diverse offering yet, is bound to keep fans engaged and occupied during this period of indeterminate downtime. We caught up with guitarist/vocalist Petri Lindroos as he sweated through one of the hottest Finnish summers on record to discuss why live show cancellations are especially painful, water’s elusive power, and the reason he’ll never stop smiling through even the worst flight conditions.

TRIBULATION: Myth, Magic, and Religion

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Nothing, not even a pandemic, can prevent Tribulation from releasing the band’s new album, Where the Gloom Becomes Sound. Guitarist Adam Zaars discusses adding Joseph Tholl to the lineup, the band’s songwriting, and performing after so much time off.

KEVIN LYMAN: A Warped Retrospective

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As part of Outburn’s Warped Tour retrospective, and with the tour on its final cross country run, we sat down and to talk with its creator and curator Kevin Lyman about the history of Warped Tour—where it started and the journey that got it to where it is today.

ANIMALS AS LEADERS: 10 Years

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It’s hard to think that Animals as Leaders forged its legacy only 10 years ago. The trio of musical geniuses still reigns today, but we can’t forget about the band’s powerful self-titled debut that will perpetually leave its mark on both metal and instrumental music history.

TOXIC HOLOCAUST: Back to the Future

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Primal Future: 2019 may be the sixth Toxic Holocaust full-length, but six albums is just the tip of the discographic iceberg for the Portland crossover thrash institution. Numerous EPs, demos, splits, live albums, and compilation appearances, in addition to those six albums, round out and comprise the 20 years of Toxic Holocaust’s recorded history. Ironically enough, Primal Future: 2019 has the most in common with the band’s earliest releases…

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