KnuckleTracks #49

1) VOIVOD - 'Rebel Robot' 4:48; from Voivod (Chophouse)
Huge news in the metal world as Jason Newsted joins northern, plutonium-cored, beyond measure metal lifelights Voivod for a record with brains, impact, accessibility... basically the ability to supercharge everything the way Nirvana, Pantera or Metallica did with Cowboys, Nevermind and Lightning respectively, respectfully and reflexively. Damn... Snake's back too. or or

2) OLD MAN'S CHILD - 'Sacrifice Of Vengeance' 4:31; from In Defiance Of Existence (Century Media)
Galder is back with a highly ambitious, hi-fidelity blast of black metal which just might include the most impressive full album's worth of Nick Barker acrobatics anywhere. Fast, plush and shockingly detailed, Galder and crew have vaulted OMC into the rarified realm of his 'n' Nick's other band, Dimmu Borgir. Contact: or

3) GOD DETHRONED - 'Enemy Of The State' 3:16; from Into The Lungs Of Hell (Metal Blade)
Technical death wizards God Dethroned are at the height of their legendary game, blessing the world with their gnashing machinations between Swedish death thrash and Florida death grind, arriving at a brilliant collection of songs that teach the young pups how to be traditional yet expertly detailed and almost dauntingly professional.

4) CALIBAN - 'Forsaken Horizon' 2:50; from Shadow Hearts (Prosthetic)
With three full-length albums now, Germany's Caliban have quickly become one of the most important metalcore acts in Europe, fusing Swedish thrash circa The Haunted to bands like Hatebreed with a hint of Relapsecore. Siggi Bemm produces and the results are skull-frying in intensity, sonic quality and virtuosity. Contact: or or

5) EVERGREY - 'Blinded' 4:34; from Recreation Day (InsideOut Music America)
Rising fast within the ranks of progressive metal are Evergrey, and it's no surprise why: the band's passionate, weighty sound is neither power metal nor prog, but more of a doomy, even timeless one. Pre-sales reviews have been ecstatic, and the record has taken on a life of its own. Come see regal metal integrity in all its glory. or

6) PHARAOH - 'After The Fire' 5:08; from After The Fire (Cruz Del Sur)
Pharaoh is a Philadelphia band that mines the rich terrain between power metal and the NWOBHM. Leads are twinned and thrilling and vocals are handled by none other than Control Denied's Tim Aymar. Fierce, tight, melodic but gritty enough to please true headbangers. Contact: or or or

7) STRATOVARIUS - 'Eagleheart' 3:50; from Elements Pt. 1 (Nuclear Blast)
Controversial but eminently stylish, Elements Pt. 1 is a brave departure from the band's patented triumphant style, offering more bombast, orchestration and detail than past fast blasters. Featured track 'Eagleheart' is fairly traditional but the rest of the album will pleasantly surprise you. Contact: or

8) BLACK LABEL SOCIETY - 'Stoned & Drunk' 5:02; from The Blessed Hellride (Spitfire)
Zakk Wylde is riding high as Ozzy's crucial right hand man, but it is Black Label that is really on the rise, the band gathering a firestorm of good press and album sales to match, folks finally getting - in droves - Zakk's no nonsense straight up metal attack. The Blessed Hellride is sure to be the breaker it deserves to be.

9) SINNER - 'There Will Be Execution' 3:32; from There Will Be Execution (Nuclear Blast)
Mat Sinner and crew are back for a grounded bit of hard old school he likes to call "more rock 'n' roll than Primal Fear." In that spirit, There Will Be Execution is no-frills, aggressive, street-heated hard stuff banging about between Accept and the NWOBHM. Contact: or

10) DREAM EVIL - 'Break The Chains' 3:32; from Evilized (Century Media)
Fredrik Nordstrom is back quick with a more aggressive, dirtier and more retro chunk of power metal that lives up to the name. Evilized packs a punch throughout, all frequencies steely and determined, the album working as both sly irony and hot iron. Contact

11) CORE DEVICE - 'Torn From Within' 4:51; from the forthcoming Our Fellowship Eternal (
Experienced both in terms of press and playing live with metal heavies, Core Device are set to release their eagerly awaited debut. The band's sound is aggressive, rhythmic and progressive with soaring, even delicate vocals that aren't afraid to hit the trenches as well. Versatility is key with these guys and journeys are taken that fill the metal soul with inspiration. Contact: POB 305, Middletown NJ 07748, 732-895-9403, or

12) PRECIPICE - 'Degeneration' 3:00; from Prophet Of Doom (Crook'd Records)
Aaron Small, in Issue #39 wrote: "Precipice is bold and challenging. If King Kong was transformed into a musical entity, this would be it. Precipice impresses - 9/10." Prophet Of Doom is a frenzied mix of head-pounding technical death/thrash that will satisfy any headbanger longing for something different. Contact POB 1238, Lutz FL 33548 or or or

13) FUNERAL FOG - 'Order Of The Dragon' 4:57; from Under The Black Veil (Cold Trance Productions)
An awesome black metal track with a fresh trick rhythm switchback, 'Order Of The Dragon' is a promising first taste of this New Brunswick band's authentic black metal sound. Killer vocals down a Venom and Bathory direction also set the band to the left hand path and above. Contact: 9 Inglis St., Shediac NB E4P 8S9 or

14) SOMBRE NOSTALGIE - 'Hommage Aux Noirs' 5:47; from Batailles de la RÈdemption (Sombre Nostalgie)
This defiant and proudly French black metal band (all lyrics in French) from Quebec City are a shocking throwback to the authentic lo-fi, underground black metal sound of yore with gurgly vocals to boot. In existence since '99, the band put out a rare, sought-after demo in 2000 which was reviewed in BW&BK. Contact: Alexandre Lemieux 235, Rheaume Ouest, Rouyn-Noranda QC J9X 2W7 or or

15) GENOCIDE SUPERSTARS - 'Hatestomp' 3:07; from III (Relapse)
Sweden's most notorious punks (in business since 1994) are back with a fast, loose and drunken third record of lethal hardcore punk that mixes old school, new school and burnt to the ground school. Cool production, nasty grooves and raucous drunk punk vocals drive this thing down the highway way too fast.

16) INFERNAL METHOD - 'Reanimating The Wicked' 2:58; from Demo CD 2002 (Infernal Method)
Intense yet melodic death metal from Australia with elements of both black and progressive thrown in for good measure. Formed in February 2002 and with a ferocious live reputation building already, Infernal Method are looking to both Europe and North America as targets for their precise metallic onslaught. Debut album produced by Astennu (ex Dimmu Borgir) will be released in 2003. You have been warned. Contact: POB 72 Surry Hills, NSW 2010 Australia or or

17) BABYLON MYSTERY ORCHESTRA - 'We Are Power' 4:16; from Divine Right Of Kings (Babylon Mystery Orchestra)
Here's an enigmatic gothic metal entity with chilling, low vocals, refreshing acoustic rock, huge Sabbatherian riffs, old school keyboards and stiff 4/4/beats, all combining to cast listeners within a spell. Lyrically, mastermind Sidney Allen Johnson casts a wide moralistic net that drifts uneasily into the apocalyptic. Contact: 610 Flowers St., Greenville AL 36037 or or

18) X-SISTER Z - 'Kill The Rest' 4:54; from the self-titled four-track demo (X-Sister Z)
A nightmarish industrial jungle leaps forth from the mind of Syn and associated compatriots in evil. These are some of the most sophisticated and subversive industrial metal sounds you're likely to hear, recalling the glory days of Godflesh, Ministry and Pitchshifter. Contact: Barbie Griffin 3740 Hermitage Rd. E., Jacksonville FL 32277 or or